As a father, one of the ways I like to bond with my kids is through gaming. We’ll often sit down in front of my gaming machine and play some PG-rated games together. At other times I’ll just sit and watch as one of my kids plays their current favourite game from my library as the sound blasts out of the speakers. This does annoy me at times, as there are often things that parents need to do without the sound of a child’s game blaring out of the PC speakers. That is where a headset comes in handy. Unfortunately, quality gaming headsets don’t often come in small enough sizes for the smaller heads of younger gamers. Often the ear cups hang far too low, making it uncomfortable for them or allowing the sound to escape. The Stealth XP Camo range has this taken care of though, with a smaller headrest and earcups allowing a better fit for the younger gamers amongst us.
The Stealth XP Camo headset comes in a range of fashion colours. We were sent the Raider to test out, a primarily white headset with a camouflage-like pattern featuring pink, purple and blue. It’s probably politically incorrect for me to say that it is aimed towards the younger female market, but my eight-year-old daughter was rather excited to test it out for herself when she saw it. Other models feature the traditional khaki/green/brown camouflage, a Desert Storm-style camouflage and another model features a black and white digital pattern.
The plastic frame is somewhat pliable, but the lightweight nature of the construction material means that the headset does not feel like it weighs you down after a few hours of gaming. The padded headrest provides an adequate buffer for further comfort. The leather ear cups too, were quite snug and had a small degree of flexibility themselves. The ear cups are smaller than other units, but I still found that they provided enough coverage to limit outside noise even on my adult size ears. Despite the headset being able to fit my young daughter when at its standard size, the adjustable band does expand enough to fit heads much larger than mine. Though, at the maximum expansion, the band does feel like it could snap if pressure was forced upon it.
The headset comes complete with in-line controls that have both volume control and a microphone mute switch – handy when you don’t want your online teammates from hearing conversations with your family members. The reasonably lengthy plastic cable ends with an L-shaped 3.5mm single-port jack, which is generally my preference when using the headset for mobile gaming and watching videos or listening to music on a mobile phone.
The detachable boom microphone is one of my favourite features of the unit, though. Not only is it detachable, but it also has a locking mechanism that prevents the mic from falling out accidentally. It is a full flexible mic too, allowing for greater flexibility than that of the Stealth Hornet that I reviewed a little while ago. This in turn resulted in a much clearer recording of voices and seemed to pick up less background noise when doing so. Considering this model is on the lower price scale for gaming headsets, I was quite impressed by the quality of the voice recordings.
Although the headset only features 40mm drivers similar to the Hornet, the smaller ear cups seem to result in a better-quality sound than the Hornet did when the in-line controls are set to maximum volume. I still found that the volume and bass felt a little underpowered – particularly when listening to music - when compared to more expensive models on the market. The same could be said for the explosions in action movies, but for gaming and watching your favourite streamed television series, the Raider performed above what I was expecting. The fact that the headset can be used on mobile devices as well as the Nintendo Switch means that it is a great all-rounder.
I must admit, I was pleasantly surprised at the performance of the Stealth XP Raider Camo headset. At first glance, the unit looks not dissimilar to the cheap headset my daughter had been using from Smiggle (well, the Smiggle set wasn’t exactly cheap). But the decent quality audio in all scenarios (gaming, watching videos, listening to music) and the superb quality detachable microphone puts the headset clearly above those initial thoughts. As a gaming headset is performs admirably. For a child’s gaming headset, it is even better, particularly as it is one of the only quality gaming headsets that actually fit smaller heads.
Although the set is made primarily from plastic, the team at Stealth Gaming have made a concerted effort to limit their environmental impact by using only cardboard in the packaging – something that other companies should use as a blueprint.