The Turtle Beach Recon 200 Review
The Turtle Beach Recon 200 gaming headset, like many of the company’s other offerings, is designed for gamers on a budget. This headset provides only the bare minimum in features—stereo sound, a built-in microphone, and a few control options—but the market for headphones is quite competitive. A note concerning our previous testing technique and adding the JBL Quantum 50 and ROCCAT Syn Buds Core to the list of alternatives was added to this Turtle Beach Recon 200 evaluation on February 25, 2022.
Turtle Beach Recon 200 Specs
|Speakers||40mm with Neodymium Magnets|
|Frequency Response||20Hz – 20kHz|
|Earcup Design||Over-Ear (Closed)|
|Headband||Synthetic Leather with Foam Cushioning|
|Cusion Meterial||Athletic Fabric with Memory Foam Cushioning|
|Microphone Design||Fixed Omni-Directional Flip-to-Mute Microphone|
|Colour Available||Black and White|
The headgear looks excellent and has a lot going for it. The white version I tried was quite comfortable to use and looked and felt great. The headset has a solid heritage as a product of Turtle Beach, making it both a high-quality and aesthetically pleasing piece of hardware. It is also evident in the product’s construction; despite being on the cheaper end of the price range, it feels as solid as anything else. Different from the Elite Pro 2 and the Elite Atlas, it seems like it could be more affordable despite its unique design. The earpads are made of a synthetic material that initially looks and feels cheap. Moreover, the headband’s little padding at its peak appeared skimpy. However, at a glance, it is easy to see that this is a Turtle Beach product, and plenty is there to inspire trust in its durability.
First, let’s take a look at what comes in the package, which includes the headset itself, along with the audio jack cable, a short USB charging cable, and a brief leaflet with setup instructions. Nothing fancy; just the basics, always ready to use. The microphone is an obvious addition to the headset and cannot be removed. It’s proportioned well and looks good with the headset. Thus, it’s comfortable to wear. It’s practically undetectable when turned up (and muted) because it blends into the design. The headset’s controls are easy to understand and use, without any cryptic icons or other nonsense.
Plug the headset’s audio connector into your controller and turn it on (the Xbox setting should be used whether connecting to a PC, Switch, or mobile device). The headset’s power switch is clearly labeled with off, PS4, and Xbox settings. The two knobs to its right control the microphone and overall volume independently. Very straightforward, with minimal room for error during installation. The Recon 200 is also compatible with Windows Sonic, Microsoft’s spatial and surround sound support for Windows and Xbox One, while older Xbox controllers will require an adaptor to make the connection. Be advised, though, that the audio connection on the Recon 200 might be a bit longer if you want to use it with a personal computer. It’s not a wireless headset, but it still needs charging, so you can’t just use it by plugging it into a controller.
So, let’s get right down to business: the audio quality is excellent in general. There are no big issues that I have with the audio, and I do not feel like anything was missing. On the other hand, it was never really impressive. It never exposed me to anything new, never rocked my world, and never left me speechless. Despite the acceptable but unremarkable sound quality, I would mention that the always-on bass boost is nice and became really obvious when switching to a different headset; I ended up missing it.
The quality of the microphone was immediately apparent as it picked up the sound of my dishwasher from another room. The intention behind this is to gauge the volume of one’s voice, but I’ve always found that asking one’s friends whether or not they can hear one is a more reliable indicator. The flip-to-mute feature is convenient and effective at keeping the mic out of the way, but the mic itself is neither removable nor retractable. You won’t have to worry about power since its battery life of 12 hours is above average for a gaming headset of this budget.
Despite the peculiarity of the Turtle Beach Recon 200’s battery, a single charge lasts for a respectable amount of time. In our tests, with a fully charged battery, the headset lasted for a little under 16 hours of continuous listening time. Since we always test at 75 dB, which is louder than most people listen to, you may also see an improvement in your own findings. The battery life isn’t great, but it’s also not terrible. There is no shortage of inferior wireless choices, albeit many also provide 3.5mm audio output for use after battery depletion.
Even with its heavy focus on the bass, the Turtle Beach Recon 200 produces passable audio. The bass increase, which you can’t disable, has resulted in a severe boost in the lowest frequencies (down to about 300 Hz). Aside from that, the headset has no problems producing highs and mids of high quality. It seems like gaming headphones frequently fall into the trap of over-amplified bass. When playing a game with this kind of frequency response, the boom of explosions and the crackle of gunfire will be up to twice as loud, depending on the frequency of the sound. Although the idea is intriguing, the audio in video games is already optimized for a specific experience.