A new version of SteelSeries’ Arctis 9 wireless gaming headphones is available today, starting at $ 199.99. The design and feature set are almost exactly the same as the SteelSeries Arctis 9X. But while the Arctis 9X supports Xbox One (and is compatible with the Xbox Series S / X), the new Arctis 9 is compatible with PC and PlayStation 4, with PS5 compatibility provided at launch. And while the Arctis 9X doesn’t require a dongle to connect to the Xbox, the Arctis 9 needs a plug-in USB receiver that you can switch from a computer to a PlayStation, depending on the platform you’re plugged into.
Otherwise, the new headphones have the same claim of 20 hours of battery life and the ability to be connected simultaneously via 2.4GHz wireless and Bluetooth at the same time ̵
The controls of these new headphones are also unchanged, with a chat dial and game mix that is easily accessible from the back of the cup on the left ear. Unfortunately, this feature is currently only usable on personal computers due to the way Sony currently handles routing audio for games and audio for chat via USB on its PlayStation consoles. The left ear cup also contains a retractable microphone.
Everything else is located on the cup of the right ear. There you will find a 3.5 mm jack that allows for cable listening, Micro USB charging port, buttons for turning on the headphones and pairing them via Bluetooth, a button to mute the microphone and finally a main volume dial.
We are seeing an increase in gaming headphones from companies that claim to be ready for next-generation consoles. While brands such as SteelSeries and Turtle Beach seem to continue to launch headphones designed specifically for each platform, other options such as the Audeze Penrose and Astro A20 Gen 2 can work with both consoles – that is, if you have wireless receivers for both the Xbox S / Series. X and PS5.
I expect to see even more headphones coming this fall when the consoles are close to launching, so there won’t be a shortage of choices if you’re in the market.