Arctis 7 vs Arctis 9 X: The Clear Difference

Arctis 7 vs Arctis 9 X – What are the key differences?

Arctis 7 is the older model of the two, and Arctis 9X is the newer model. Arctis 7 has a common look with Arctis 9X. Both have excellent sound quality and are considered among the best wireless headphones for gaming.

There are a few obvious distinctions between the two headsets. Let’s look closely at each headset to see what sets them apart.

Are SteelSeries headphones good? SteelSeries makes headphones that are good for gaming, especially on consoles like PS4, Xbox, and PC. Some great SteelSeries gaming headsets are the Artic 7 and the Artic 9X.

The SteelSeries Arctis 7 seems to be the perfect headset for gamers. It’s got many features that make it adaptable and sound good. It is also a good value because it is not too expensive

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REASONS TO BUY

Excellent sound quality

Works with PS4 and Xbox

Good wireless transmitter

Impressive built quality and design

REASONS TO AVOID

No Bluetooth

Limited connectivity for Xbox

Previously, gamers used wired headsets because the wireless ones did not have good audio quality. However, gaming headsets have come a long way and now provide a much better audio experience. The SteelSeries Arctis 9 X gaming headset is a good example. The Arctic 9X are wireless headsets for Xbox that do not require dongles or adapters for connectivity.

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REASONS TO BUY

Excellent sound quality

Best gaming headphones for Xbox

Bluetooth connectivity

Impressive built quality and design

REASONS TO AVOID

Does not support PS4 or other consoles

Less customization options

What’s in the Box?

We begin our comparison review of Arctis 7 vs Arctis 9 X by looking at what’s included in the box.

You don’t get much with the 9X. Unboxing revealed the following. For this review, we got the Microsoft wireless adapter separately to test the 9X on PC and laptop.

  • Micro USB to USB cable to access the app on your PC,
  • Manual
  • Arctic 9x headset
artic 9x
Artis 9X Accessories

As for the Arctis 7, you get the following

  • a USB Dongle,
  • USB audio cable
  • TRRS mobile audio cable (1/8)
  • Manuals
  • Arctis 7 headset
steelseries artics 7
Artis 7 Accessories 2019 edition

Arctis 7 vs Arctis 9 Comparison Chart:

Here is an Arctis 7 vs Arctis 9 comparative view of some of the key featrures. These are approx

FeatureArctis 7 (2019)Arctis 9X
Connectivity range 50 ft40 ft
Bluetooth range45 ft
Battery run time24 hours27 hours
Charging time3 hr 30 mins2 hr 30 mins
Power savingAuto-offNo
Software supportYesLimited options
Xbox CompatibleAudio onlyYes
PS4 CompatibleYesAudio only
PC CompatibleYesYes
Approx. figures for arctis 7 vs arctis 9 comparison. May vary depending upon testing condictions

Design

The similarities between the Arctis 7 vs Arctis 9 are more than just physical. The design of both headsets is based on metal frames and ski-goggles-shaped headbands.

The elastic band in the headset goes around your head instead of having hooks inside, as in Arctis 3 and Arctis 5. These headsets also do not have RGB lighting like Arctis 5. This is a good feature to improve on battery

More reasons these headsets look identical include similar padding and retractable mics. They don’t have removable back plates like other, more expensive models of the same brand such as Arctics Pro, Pro wireless, and the ProGame. The yokes of the headsets are also identical.

The overall design of both the headphones feels like what you would expect from an Arctis headset – sturdy yet comfortable. So it does not get too tight around your head after hours of gaming sessions!

Comfort

The comfort level is about the same for both models. They have similar pads on their headsets and ear cups, so gamers won’t notice significant differences when playing PC games or gaming with these devices.

Some people have bigger heads, and the Arctis headphones can feel tight for them. The metal frames don’t expand much, so it can be hard to adjust them. This makes the headphones harder to wear for long gaming sessions compared to other types of ear cups that give more space around your head, like JBL Quantum 200 or the Razer BlackShark Gaming V2 Headset

The soft fabric pads help the audio devices work well while playing games. This is because they allow enough airflow to avoid getting too hot under pressure within minutes. The headset’s mic is also flexible, which makes it easy to adjust for a comfortable fit.

artic 9x
Arctis 9X earcups and headband

Control Operations

Our review of arctis 7 vs arctis 9 comparisons indicates that there is not much difference between the two (apart from minor design differences) if you want to use them for gaming or listening to music.

The 9Xs have more practical uses. They are easier to use because of BlueTooth connectivity. The bottom of the right ear cup has a Bluetooth pairing button that also acts as your media management control when paired to a smartphone. With two presses, you can skip tracks, and with three quick clicks, you can rewind your track. This makes the 9X better than the Arctic 7 for everyday casual use. However, in gaming, they are about the same.

arctis 7 vs arctis 9
Arctis 7 vs Arctis 9 Controls

Both headphones have their power button on the bottom of the right ear cup. The 9x has the mute mic button and volume control options on the right cup instead of the left one as other models of the same brand. The mute mic button in the 9X is slightly bigger than the 7, making it easier to use in comparison.

The chat mix dial is located on different sides of the headphones, depending on the model you have. For example, those who wear an Arctis 9X are near their ear and in front. While in Arctis 7 and many other Arctis models, this feature is closer to where we plug our cable into (bottom). It isn’t much hassle since once you get used to which side yours falls under, things will be fine!

These headsets are designed for gamers, making them easy to use. They have button feedback and simple operations, making them an excellent choice!

Sound Quality

The Arctis 7 vs. Arctis 9 X headphones have similar sound quality. They both produce clear audio and have similar sound profiles.

However, they don’t sound the same. When we tested the headphones, we found that different tracks still sounded different. Moreover, the sub-bass frequencies were weaker in the Artcis 9X headphones. Whereas the Arctis 7 had slightly mismatched drivers. However, this difference is not very noticeable during gaming sessions.

These headphones reproduced vocals and lead instruments accurately and clearly. They have a good treble range performance and maintain frequency response consistency. The sensitivity may vary depending on head shape/size and whether or not you wear glasses. You can adjust the sound quality to your liking with the equalizer.

The sound isolation of the headphones was not very good. They did not block outside noise. If you are in a noisy environment, you may need to increase the headset’s volume. Keep in mind that some sounds may leak to people around you.

During gameplay, the sound traveled perfectly through the mic. You can hear the other person even with the game sounds.

Overall, the sound experience of both headphones is amazing

Range

The Arctis 7 with its dedicated transmitter in the box has a better connectivity range than the 9x with a wireless adapter. The Arctis 7’s range is approx. 53 feet without interruptions, while the 9X’s range is about 40 feet. However, this shouldn’t matter too much as you play video games not far away from your TV or PC.

If you like to walk around your house when listening to music, then 9X may not be your best option. This is because they have a limited range with a wireless adapter. However, they have Bluetooth connectivity, so you can connect them to your phone while listening to music.

Connectivity

The Arctis 7 is more versatile than the 9x. The Arctis 7 comes with a dedicated transmitter. You can easily hook them up to home theater sets via USB or wirelessly transmit any audio to your headset. 

When connected through USB, the Arctis 7 will have mic and audio support on PC and PS4 but only audio support on Xbox. 

The 9X can easily connect to Xbox wirelessly. They also have the audio jack option for connectivity without mic support. You can connect via Bluetooth as well.

Latency

Latency is the delay between when an audio signal leaves its source and arrives in your ears. This can be anything from listening through wireless headphones or speakers.

The Arctis 7 performed better for latency when compared to Artis 9X. However, the lag is minor in both headphones, you won’t experience any when playing games or listening to music on this headset.

Battery Life

The Arctis 9X has better battery life, but the difference is insignificant. The 9X runs for about 27 hours on a single charge, whereas the Arctis 7 battery lasted 24 hours. The Arctic 7 has an auto-off timer. So you can set the shut-off time through the app for a better run time.

The 9X has a better charging time. It can charge about two and a half hours, whereas the Arctis 7 takes three and a half hours. 

Application Support

Both the headphones work with SteelSeries Engine. The Arctis 7 has much better software support than the 9X. You can customize its features and use it wirelessly with your PC or laptop. The app does not support 9X when connected via the wireless adapter. You can access the equalizer mode, and mic volume controls when connected via cable.

Final Word

So, which headset should you choose?

The Arctis line is great for gaming headsets, offering clear and well-balanced sound, low latency, and comfortable designs. 

If your primary gaming device is an Xbox, the 9x are a good fit since they were designed for that console and are more convenient to use wirelessly. They will connect seamlessly like your Xbox controllers and also support Bluetooth. If you often use headsets with your phone, the wireless design of the Arctis 9X will be more practical than the Arctis 7.

On the other hand, for most people, the versatility of the Arctis 7 and their cheaper price point make them a better value, especially if you primarily game on PC or PS4.

They both have great designs, sound quality, and ease of use.

Click on the link to read more about these headphones!

Arctis vs other gaming headsets, which is better?

The SteelSeries Arctis has better sound quality and is well built as compared to various other gaming headsets. However, they are expensive in price as well.

What is the latency of Arctis headphones?

SteelSeries Arctis headphones have one of the lowest latencies in the market. The technology that the Artics headphones operate with boasts a low latency of about 16 ms which is not really noticeable.

Do Arctis headphones work with PC and Mac?

The steelseries artic 7 is a highly versatile gaming headphone. It works with PlayStation, Xbox, PC, and Mac.

Does the arctis 7 have BlueTooth?

Arctis 7 does not have BlueTooth connectivity. It uses a dongle to connect wirelessly.

Does the arctis 9x work on ps4?

You will get a limited connection with PS4 with the Arctis 9X which is audio only.

Shahzaib Haider
Gadguy.com is the go-to website by S. Haider for all things consumer electronics. You can find reviews on new releases and trending gadgets. More importantly, you'll get an insider perspective from someone who knows these devices. S Haider, a banker by profession and a tech enthusiast by evening, has been writing about consumer electronics for over five years now which gives him ample knowledge when it comes down to understanding what users need in their lives today; whether they're looking into buying something new or just want some advice.