The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition are great gaming headphones that are almost identical to the previous model. They still have good audio reproduction, and their microphone is great for communicating with friends online. They're also quite versatile, since they can be used wired, and most users will be more than satisfied with their 25-hour battery life. They have a bit more padding on the ear cups, but it doesn’t make much of a difference comfort-wise, except for people who have bigger ears. They are also a bit tight on some heads, and their isolation performance is sub-par, but this shouldn’t be an issue for most gamers.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition are very similar to the previous model design-wise but have a few small improvements. The biggest difference is that the padding is thicker on the newer model, but we didn’t feel that much of a difference in terms of comfort. However, people with bigger ears will appreciate the deeper ear cups. The headband is also slightly more curved, which better suits wider heads. Other than that, the 2019 Edition is almost identical to the previous SteelSeries Arctis 7.
There’s not a big difference in style from the previous SteelSeries Arctis 7 model. The headband is now black instead of silver and has a slightly different design. Other than that, the padding is slightly thicker on the earcups, but the design is still the same. The cups are wide, and they have a retractable microphone. The overall build is simple and polished, but not very flashy. You can purchase more colorful headband straps and backplates directly on the SteelSeries website if you want your headphones to stand out a bit more.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition is about as comfortable as the previous one. However, the earcups have slightly more padding, which makes them a bit deeper and better-suited for bigger ears. The headset feels a bit tight on some larger heads, and the length of the strap limits the size adjustment options. They come with soft and porous padding that allows airflow and feels nice on the skin. For slightly more comfortable gaming headphones, take a look at the Astro A40 and A50 headsets.
The control scheme of the new SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition is the same as the previous model. You still get access to a mic-mute button, a channel mixing wheel, and a volume wheel. The wheels are slightly more textured but work essentially the same way. Those controls are well suited for gaming, but you won’t have more versatile controls like music/call management that you could use with your mobile device.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition are somewhat breathable, due to their porous padding on the ear cups that help with airflow a bit. You might still feel a difference in temperature when wearing them for long periods of time and they won’t be suitable for most sports. However, they should be fine for casual gaming sessions.
Like most gaming headsets, the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition aren’t very portable. They don’t fold into a more compact format, but the cups do swivel to lay flat, which makes it easier to slide them into a bag. Unfortunately, if you want to use them wirelessly you need their USB transmitter, which is even more restrictive. However, you shouldn’t be on the move too often with your gaming headset, so this shouldn’t be an issue.
The overall build of the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 didn’t change much. They are well-built headphones with dense cups and a metal headband frame, which is sturdy yet flexible. The retractable microphone is malleable and feels well-made. These headphones should survive a few accidental drops without suffering too much damage, but the back plates of the ear cups might come off on impact.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition have a tight but comfortable fit that feels secure once on your head. You should be able to use them for light physical activity like jogging or working out at home with the wireless transmitter. However, their build is still quite bulky, so they won’t be ideal for most intense physical activities and aren't really designed for sports.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition are good-sounding closed-back headphones. They have a powerful bass, a well-balanced mid-range, and a fairly even treble range. However, their bass lacks a bit of thump, might be a bit boomy for some and is prone to inconsistencies, especially if you wear glasses. Their mid-range can sound a bit cluttered, producing thick vocals, and some S and T sounds in the treble range can be a bit piercing. Overall, most users will be satisfied with these since they're versatile for music and gaming, but the SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless and SteelSeries Arctis Pro GameDAC models are better-sounding options. You can EQ all these models in the SteelSeries Engine software, although we didn’t apply any EQ presets for our measurements.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 have a very good bass performance. LFE (low-frequency extension) is at 48Hz, which is decent. Low-bass, responsible for the thump and rumble common to EDM, hip-hop, and video game sound effects, is lacking by about 3dB, but this won’t be too audible. Also, there is a 3dB bump in high-bass, which will add a bit of excess boominess to the bass.
Their bass delivery varies noticeably across users and is sensitive to the quality of the fit, seal, and whether you wear glasses. The response here represents the average bass response, and your experience may vary.
The mid-range of the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition is also great and well-balanced. However, there is a 2dB overemphasis in low-mid which is the continuation of the high-bass bump. This makes mixes sound a bit cluttered and muddy and vocals a bit thick-sounding, but this won’t be too audible. The rest of the response is fairly flat and even, which results in accurate reproduction of vocals and leads.
The treble range is pretty good. The response is fairly flat and even before 5kHz, but starts to get overemphasized after, especially around the 10kHz region. Sibilants (S and T sounds) around these frequencies will sound a bit too sharp and piercing, but not everyone will hear this as intensely as others.
The frequency response consistency is sub-par. Their bass delivery is relatively consistent across our human subjects, except for the one who wears glasses. The maximum deviation at 20Hz is about 9dB. So if you have a lot of hair between the headphones and your ear, or have glasses that are not flush to your temple, then you may experience a noticeable drop in bass. In the treble range, we measured more than 7dB of deviation in response at 3.5kHz, which is not good and noticeable.
The imaging performance of the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition is good. Their weighted group delay is at 0.61, which is decent. The GD graph shows that most of the group delay is below the audibility threshold but slightly surpasses it around 40Hz. However, this won’t be audible for most users. Also, we measured some mismatch in amplitude, frequency, and phase between the L and R drivers, which is noticeable. Additionally, there are a few online reports of people saying that both drivers don’t perform the same way and the stereo image is slightly skewed. These results are only valid for our unit, and yours may perform differently, but this might show a flaw in manufacturing tolerance.
The soundstage is fair. Although the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 show a lot of pinna activation, which suggests a relatively large soundstage, the shape of its PRTF doesn't follow our reference's very accurately. This could mean that the soundstage, although large, may be perceived to be a bit unnatural and inside the head. Also, since they have a closed-back enclosure, their soundstage may not feel as open as that of open-back headphones.
The harmonic distortion performance is very good. The overall amount of harmonic distortion is quite low, regardless of the level and frequency. There is a small bump in THD around 250Hz and 4.4kHz, which could make these frequencies a bit harsh and impure. On the upside, there is no big jump in THD under heavier loads, which is good.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition have breathable and porous ear padding, which means they don’t block much noise. The headphones create a good seal around your ears that does a good job masking out higher frequency noises, but they don’t block out any lower frequency sounds like engine rumbles. This means the Arctis 7 2019 won’t be a great choice for commuting, and they won’t block out the deep rumbles of subwoofers at a gaming event. On the upside, the good seal can stop a decent amount of leakage, so you can block more noise by listening to moderately loud volumes without disturbing people around you. This shouldn’t be an issue if you mostly play in a quiet room alone.
The isolation performance is poor. These headphones don't have active noise cancelling and don’t isolate in the bass range, meaning they will let in the rumbles of airplanes and bus engines. In the mid-range, important for blocking out speech, they isolate by about 8dB, which is inadequate. In the treble range, however, they reduce ambient noise by more than 32dB, which is good for reducing sharp sounds such as S and Ts and A/C noise.
The leakage performance is decent. The significant portion of their leakage sits between 400Hz and 4kHz, which is a relatively broad range and mostly concentrated in the mid-range. This means that their leakage will sound fuller than that of in-ears and earbuds, but not as loud and full as open-back headphones. The overall level of the leakage is not very loud, either. With the music at 100dB SPL, the leakage at 1 foot away averages at 39dB SPL and peaks at 54dB SPL, which is slightly above the noise floor of most offices.
The performance of the boom microphone is very good. Speech recorded or transmitted with this mic in a quiet environment will sound full and easily comprehensible, but slightly bright and lacking in airiness. In noisy environments, the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition's mic can reject ambient noise to a great degree, making it good to use in very loud places like a gaming event.
Great recording quality. LFE is extended down to 82Hz, which is very good. This means voice recorded with the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition will sound full. However, HFE is limited to 6.6kHz, resulting in recorded speech that sounds relatively detailed and easily comprehensible, but lacking in airiness and brilliance. Also, the bump from 2kHz to 6kHz makes the sound of this microphone noticeably bright, which, although it won't sound neutral, could help with cutting through the game audio.
The boom microphone has excellent noise handling. It achieves a speech-to-noise ratio of about 34dB, which is remarkable and indicates it can separate speech from noise even in the most demanding environments, like a gaming event.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition have a remarkable battery life that can last you for a few gaming marathons. They lasted about 25 hours on one charge, and you can still charge them while using them or use them completely passively. The Arctis 7 2019 are also compatible with the SteelSeries Engine software, which offers a great amount of customization. In the app, you can EQ their sound to your liking and have access to different microphone controls. You can now set the auto-off timer within the app, which you couldn’t do with the previous model.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition have a great 25-hour battery life and power-saving features. You’ll be able to game for long sessions without a problem. You can also set your auto-off timer inside the app, which is convenient. They can also be used while they are charging, and if your battery is ever dead, you can also use them passively with an audio cable.
The SteelSeries Engine is a pretty complete app that offers many options for the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition. It provides a graphic equalizer with presets and a compressor, DTS surround sound, and a live preview, as well as volume control for the mic. You can also save your configuration under the config tab so you can quickly switch between your different settings. It lacks some of the fancier auto-calibration features that some headsets have, but it's efficient, easy-to-use, and all the controls are under a single page, so you don't have to navigate between multiple tabs. You'll also need to use their transmitter if you want to keep your EQ and different settings active. Additionally, you can now set or disable the auto-off timer with the 2019 Edition, which wasn’t available on the previous model. If you prefer having RGB lighting and special features, take a look at the bass haptic feedback of the Razer Nari Ultimate or the great Logitech G Hub app with the G935.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition kept the same connectivity options as the previous model. This gaming headset connects to its USB dock for wireless use on PCs and consoles (with limited support on Xbox), or you can use it wired on all platforms as well. The latency is minimal, and you shouldn’t notice a delay when playing video games or watching videos. The wireless range of this model is also better than the last edition.
These headphones are not Bluetooth compatible. If you want a similarly designed headset with Bluetooth, check out the SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition have a proprietary audio cable that isn't OS specific and is compatible with most consoles. If you prefer wired headphones for gaming, then check out the similar SteelSeries Arctis Pro GameDAC. They have a lot more control options, thanks to the DAC, but they're also a bit pricier and might not be worth it for everyone.
The base/dock is a small dongle transmitter with a line in and line out. It's compatible with the PS4 and PC, but only provides audio for Xbox One. It also doesn't have dock charging, which would have a been a great addition.
The wireless range of the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition is amazing. You will be able to walk around to the next room over without getting audio cuts, which can be convenient when you need to pause your game. However, the wireless range is dependent on your source's signal strength and many other factors, so your results may vary.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 practically don’t have any latency due to their dongle, and perform better than the previous model as well. This will be great for gaming, as you won’t feel the delay between the audio and video content of your game. If you really want to eliminate latency, you can use the headset with a wired connection.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition might be worth the upgrade from the previous model for some people who had comfort issues. Their versatility for their affordable price is unmatched. However, they don’t have mic support on the Xbox One when used wirelessly, so if you're an Xbox gamer make sure to check out our recommendations for best Xbox One headsets. See also our recommendations for the best PS4 gaming headsets and the best PC gaming headsets.
The newer SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition is slightly different in style from the SteelSeries Arctis 7 and seems to have more padding on the ear cups. This makes them deeper and more suited for bigger ears. However, the overall performance of the two models is fairly similar and might not be worth the upgrade if you didn’t have any issue with the fit of the 2017 model. The 2019 Edition has a better wireless range, and you can now set your desired auto-off timer in the SteelSeries Engine software.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition is a better gaming headset than the HyperX Cloud Flight. Both headsets are wireless and have great sound quality, but the SteelSeries feels more high-end and better built. It also has a great customization software that the HyperX lacks. On the other side, the HyperX has a better microphone that has amazing noise handling and will easily separate speech from background noise. Also, some may prefer having a USB dongle without a wire for easier cable management.
The SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless are a bit better than the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition for gaming headphones. The Arctis Pro Wireless have more connectivity options since they support Bluetooth, and have a base that acts not only as a wireless transmitter but also as a charging station. They also have better sound and mic quality. The Arctis 7 are significantly cheaper, though. If you don’t need Bluetooth and don’t care for the swappable battery design, the Arctis 7 may be a better choice, considering the price difference.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition are better gaming headphones than the Logitech G933. They have channel mixing, which can be useful when you need to mute game or chat audio. They also feel better-built and their microphone offers better recording quality. They also offer about twice the battery life of the Logitech. On the other hand, the G933 have more customization options in their app and also offer RGB lighting, which some may like. You also have more controls on the headset and have access to mappable buttons.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition are slightly better gaming headphones than the Astro A50. While they aren’t as comfortable as the Astros and their dock doesn’t support charging, the Arctis 7 can be used wired and are more versatile. The recording quality of the microphone is also noticeably better. On the other hand, the Astros have a better default sound profile, but you always need their dock to use them, which is restrictive. The SteelSeries are also cheaper and will have a better value for most.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition are a better gaming headset than the Corsair Void RGB. They are better-built headphones and their microphone has better recording quality for online games. You can also use the SteelSeries wired with all platforms, which you can’t do with the Void RGB. The audio quality is noticeably better on the SteelSeries and they are also compatible with a great app that offers an EQ and multiple controls, including surround sound. On the other hand, the Corsair performs more consistently across different users and they have RGB lighting, which the SteelSeries don't have.
The SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition Wireless are better gaming headphones than the Logitech G935. They are better-built headphones and don’t feel as plasticky. Their microphone is noticeably better and offers a better speech recording quality. They also have about twice the battery life of the G935. On the other hand, the Logitech headphones have a better app that offers more controls and they also have RGB lighting, if that’s something you’re interested in having. The G935 also has better out-of-the-box sound quality, although you can EQ both headsets in their respective apps.
Both the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition Wireless and the Astro A40 are great gaming headphones. They each are better in their own categories. The Astro come with a great dock that offers controls and they are slightly more comfortable. Their microphone sounds better and you won’t have to worry about battery life with this wired headset. On the other hand, the Arctis can also be used wirelessly. However, you can’t use them for full audio and mic support on Xbox One and won’t be as versatile. On the upside, the SteelSeries Engine offers more controls and customization options than the Astro Command Center software, and their closed-back design isolates a bit more noise than the open-back Astros.