• 50mm diameter speakers with neodymium magnets
  • Speaker frequency response: 20Hz – 20kHz, >120dB SPL @ 1kHz
  • In-line Amplifier Stereo DC-coupled, 35mW/ch, THD <1%, Frequency Response: DC – 30kHz
  • Mic mute switch
  • Fixed Bass Boost +9dB @150Hz
  • USB connector for power (5VDC @ <60mA max)

The XL1’s are entry-level headsets, but entry-level Turtle Beach headsets, meaning it’s the bottom end of a high-end brand. It’s an inline-amplified stereo headset including a mic for online communication. The finish materials are of a high standard, made of good quality plastics and rubber. While it is an attractive headset, that’s hardly a contributing factor for why I would recommend them.


So what are you paying for? The performance.

At the end of the day the price you pay is modestly more than the run-of-the mill products, and spending that little bit more gets you a whole lot of performance. The headset does have a pretty large speaker (50mm) and the finishing-products’ quality comes at a price, but at the end of the day it’s the sound that you are paying for. The difference the in-line amplifier makes to an audiophile is almost night and day. It’s not just the fact that the earphone can now handle higher volumes, but it’s how it handles the higher volumes – with absolute clarity. That’s not to say that the high volumes is the only area where you benefit, the sound quality at lower volumes is also, well, better. Amplifiers basically increase the power or volume of a signal and improve it. In-line amps being much smaller than solid-state amplifiers means they can be used for headsets. The headset features a bass-booster, and so when you add bass to sound, the general clarity levels are increased as all the sound-waves benefit from bass.

The online communication is the other major factor that benefits from with the XL 1’s. The system has volume controls for both the general volume as well as communication volume. The volume controllers coupled with amplified sound, allows you not to have to miss a beat or word. The headset also allows you to hear what you are saying through your mic, as the sound is channelled back to the speakers.


Being a gamer, you probably don’t need anyone to sell you on the Turtle Beach brand. The brand has been around for some time now and is one of the most popular brands amongst gamers. Turtle Beach are also market leaders when it comes to innovation.

For the gaming set-up at home, I cannot see why you would need to spend more on a headset provided you are only looking for stereo. The XL’s online performance is very good, allowing you to hear everything in the lobby and game, and I cannot see how anyone would need more volume than these can deliver. I don’t mean “acceptable” or “comfortable” volume either. I mean the XL 1 headset is proper loud, while remaining absolutely clear at extreme volumes.

I don’t think Turtle Beach position any of their products as “value for money” in the market, I would say they are more of a performance brand – you pay for what you get. Surprisingly the XL 1’s are an absolute steal for around the R 500 mark. The Turtle Beach XL1 headset offers great bang for buck from a trusted brand.