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SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7 Dragon Edition review: Flashy headset

SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7 Dragon Edition review: Flashy headset

Steelseries Arctis Nova 7 Wireless Dragon Edition

To commemorate the Year of the Dragon, SteelSeries launched a limited edition Arctis Nova 7 wireless gaming headset. Aside from being in festive red, a Chinese dragon in gold is printed on both sides of the headphones. The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7 Wireless Dragon Edition is pricey, but offers a full set of features for gamers with a unique love-it-or-hate-it design.

Quick specs

  • 2.4GHz, Bluetooth, and wired 3.5mm connection
  • Battery life up to 38 hours
  • Supports PC, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch and mobile devices
  • Retractable microphone

The dragon motif on the outside of the earcups is actually a magnetic faceplate. I removed it, and was surprised to see the Chinese word for fortune (福) printed there. This gives it an even greater Chinese New Year vibe than the dragon. When you are tired of both auspicious designs, you can swap to the extra set of faceplates with the SteelSeries logo included in the package. These headphones provide a good fit, and are comfortable even when worn with glasses. The adjustable headband also comes with a fabric strap to let you further tune the fit. I did notice that sound isolation is not great, even when worn snugly. This isn't a deal-breaker, but do expect some background noise to creep in during the quieter moments in your game.

Credit: John Chan/Can Buy or Not

Setup is pretty straightforward. I connected the 2.4GHz USB-C dongle to my PC, and it was good to go. SteelSeries includes a USB-A male to USB-C female cable for those without a USB-C port. I tested on a Windows PC, but this dongle can work directly with consoles (PlayStation, Switch) as well as mobile phones. It supports simultaneous 2.4GHz and Bluetooth transmission, so you can listen to two sources at the same time. For example, you can pick up a call on your phone, while gaming on your PC or console without missing a beat. The retractable microphone (ClearCast Gen 2) quality was good — my gaming buddies had no trouble hearing me clearly. 

Credit: John Chan/Can Buy or Not

Out of the box, this headset with 40mm drivers sounded okay for music playback, and gaming, with good clarity but weaker bass, compared to many gaming headsets, such as the Razer Blackshark V2 which I use regularly. After installing SteelSeries' GG app (for Windows), the Sonar feature there lets you finetune audio settings to your liking. If you don't like to tinker, Sonar has useful audio presets for games, with many of the most popular ones already represented there. I activated a preset for Valorant, and immediately noticed lowered bass and improved clarity. This made a lot of sense as I was able to focus more on sounds like enemy footsteps, critical for tactical shooter games.

SteelSeries says the battery life is 38 hours when using 2.4GHz wireless. I found this to be quite accurate, getting nine days of 4- to 4.5-hour sessions daily before it went flat. At S$359 from Shopee or Lazada, the SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7 Dragon Edition is pricey for a mid-range gaming headset. That said, its feature set is comprehensive, and will make those who like red and dragons very happy. If not, SteelSeries sells a regular, black version of this headset at S$299, also on Shopee and Lazada.

See Also
Creative Zen Hybrid Pro Classic

Note: Review unit provided by SteelSeries.


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Verdict



CAN BUY

Feature-packed headset with Year of Dragon vibe

Buy it at Shopee
Buy it at Lazada

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