Product: Primer Wireless Stereo Headset
Manufacturer: Mad Catz/Tritton
Voice and party chat has been an integral part of multiplayer gaming for much of this generation, with the ability to text chat effectively between team-mates lacking on consoles. Although PC gamers have long had the ability to voice-chat with their teammates, through the likes of Ventrilo and Teamspeak, voice-chat was a new thing for most console gamers with the introduction of Xbox 360 and PS3.
The headset that comes with the Xbox 360 to do this, however, is best described as a flimsy mess. That’s where manufacturers such as Turtle Beach and Mad Catz have come in, but the price range for the higher end headsets has always proved a bit of a barrier. The latest headset trying to strike a keen balance between price and quality is the Tritton Primer Wireless Stereo Headset. Mad Catz’s premium range, Tritton, has a whole host of headsets to fit any budget. Does the Tritton Primer have what it takes to bridge the void between quality and price?
Bundled with all the cables you could possibly need, to suit any Xbox 360 setup ranging from a composite to HDMI, the Tritton Primer is well stocked and easy to assemble. Besides the headset, the box also comes with the most important piece of kit you need, the 5.8ghz wireless unit, that comes with an operating range of 33ft/10m. Using a 5.8ghz bandwidth essentially eliminates interference from other commonly used wireless devices, as they operate on a much lower bandwidth.
As a product that will be worn for long periods of time when gaming, the build quality and comfort are two very important factors for a headset. In the first department, the Tritton Primer is well made and sturdy, with the ear-cups being able to rotate in order to not break around larger heads. The headstrap is similarly adjustable by up to 2.5 inches, allowing a strong and sturdy fit without worries about breaking what, at between £70-90, is a relatively expensive piece of kit.
It is important to note, however, that there are a few problems with the headset in terms of comfort. Although most people will find the fit entirely comfortable, those with larger ears or heads may find that the ear-cups become uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time unless they are seated in a specific position. What this means is that the ears will become increasingly warm if worn for a few hours. Eventually, you can get used to it, but on occasion it proved an annoyance, making my ears sore at times.
With a headset, it’s vitally important that the audio quality is exemplary, and that’s certainly the case with the Tritton Primer. Though it’s not a 5.1 headset, or 7.1, like its more expensive brothers and rivals, the stereo quality is excellent. Explosions sound meaty, voices sound clear and there’s a lot of clarity to the sound that comes from the excellent neodymium speakers. With the addition of separate controls for voice chat volume and game audio, there’s also the ability to strike a fine balance in the audio while on the fly, with the controls easily accessible while the headset is in use.
With a clear, crisp sound, and a minimal amount of background noise, the microphone is a marked improvement on the basic headset that arrives with the console. There are very few problems with the microphone itself; it’s easily retractable and, combined with the aforementioned separate controls for voice chat and game audio, it’s a great headset to use in party chat and in-game chat on Xbox LIVE.
- Premium 5.8 GHz wireless technology delivers clear audio and prevents interference with other devices
- True wireless Xbox 360 chat – no cable between the gamepad and headset
- Precision-balanced 40mm speakers with Neodymium magnets provide deep bass and crisp highs
- Frequently used controls are easy to find while wearing the headset
- Ergonomically designed for extreme comfort and extended gaming sessions
- Includes everything needed to connect to any version Xbox 360
- Speaker Diameter: 40mm
- Magnet Type: Neodymium
- Ear Coupling: Supra-Aural
- Xbox 360 Audio Input Type: RCA
- Wireless Frequency: 5.8GHz
- Wireless Range: 33ft / 10m
- Batteries: 2 AA included
VERDICT: Aiming for the more affordable end of the quality headset market, the Tritton Primer treads a fine line, providing an excellent package for a fairly affordable price. Although some will be put off by a few issues with comfort, and the fact that it’s not a 5.1 or 7.1 headset and still costs a considerable amount of money when you don’t compare it to other wireless headset, the Tritton Primer is a headset you should definitely consider if you’re after an excellent headset with great audio and build quality.