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The Turtle Beach Recon 70 gaming headset on an off-white surface.

Turtle Beach Recon 70 review

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 offers the basics for not much money, plain and simple. How does it stack up to the competition?
By
February 4, 2022
7.2
Turtle Beach Recon 70
The bottom line
The Turtle Beach Recon 70 is a solidly executed, garden variety gaming headset. It handles the basics well and doesn't offer any frills for very little money. Bassheads won't be satisfied here because of the quiet sub-bass response. Still, this kind of sound shouldn't be much of a hindrance since explosions are typically mixed to be the loudest sound in a game anyway.

Turtle Beach Recon 70

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 is a solidly executed, garden variety gaming headset. It handles the basics well and doesn't offer any frills for very little money. Bassheads won't be satisfied here because of the quiet sub-bass response. Still, this kind of sound shouldn't be much of a hindrance since explosions are typically mixed to be the loudest sound in a game anyway.
Release date

May 1, 2019

Price

Original: $39 USD

Dimensions

9.5 x 23.8 x 20.9 cm

Weight

476g

Model Number

B07NR2TJP9

Waterproof

No

What we like
Price
Mic output
Multi-platform compatibility
What we don't like
Isolation
Bass output
Mic is quiet
7.2
SoundGuys Rating
7.7
User Rating
Rating Metric
Our Rating
User Rating
Sound Quality
8.1
7.3
7.0
Isolation / Attenuation
1.8
7.2
7.0
Durability / Build Quality
8.0
7.9
8.0
Value
9.0
8.6
9.0
Design
8.5
8.3
8.0
Microphone
6.8
7.2
7.0
Portability
7.5
7.9
8.0
Comfort
8.0
7.1
7.0

When most people look for a gaming headset, they often really just want something cheap, simple, and ready to use. Extra frills like surround, multi-colored LEDs, and different connection options are all well and good, but they’re still just that: frills. The Turtle Beach Recon 70 sticks to just the basics—headphones and a microphone, and that’s it.

However, lots of great gaming headsets offer just the basics—how does this one stack up?

Editor’s note: this Turtle Beach Recon 70 review was updated on February 4, 2022, to answer an FAQ about the ROCCAT Elo X Stereo and add the Turtle Beach Recon 200 as an alternative.

Who is the Turtle Beach Recon 70 for?

  • Gamers looking for something reliable that works on every platform.
  • Parents looking for something cheap to make the bleeps, bloops, and gunfire filling their house go away.

What is the Turtle Beach Recon 70 like?

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 gaming headset ear cup and microphone.
For some reason the mic actually has two flipped-up positions: one where it rests pointing straight up, and one where it turns farther back, aligning with the groove running through the middle of the headphone.

There’s not a lot to the Turtle Beach Recon 70—from its build to its features, this is a pared-back device. However, if that’s what you’re looking for, there’s a lot to like about this headset. This is a stereo gaming headset compatible with your PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or Nintendo Switch.

It’s made of hard plastic with a nice matte textured exterior, with leatherette pads on the ear cups and headband. Despite the lack of any metal whatsoever, this still feels like a pretty sturdy headset. It doesn’t creak, the headband clamps down with an adequate amount of force to feel secure, and the overall design is very comfortable. At the point where the headphones connect to the headband, there’s a swivelling hinge that lets the Turtle Beach Recon 70 lay flat, and hinges connected to the outside of the headphones allow for a decent amount of tilt to accommodate different head shapes.

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 gaming headset lays on a black surface with its volume dial and microphone in focus.
Unlike a lot of other gaming headsets, there’s not a lot going on with regards to onboard controls.

The simplicity of the Turtle Beach Recon 70’s design helps a lot—there are very few flourishes or added angular elements to otherwise complicate things and add potential points of failure. The ear cups are a little on the small side, and the leatherette is rather stiff, which means people with glasses will probably have some trouble getting a decent seal (or comfortably wearing the headset at all). However, as someone without glasses, I never had any issue wearing this for long stretches.

Actually using the headset is just as straightforward as you’d expect.  It connects using a 3.5mm headphone jack, so setting it up is just a matter of plugging it in. There’s a volume dial and an attached microphone on the left which mutes when you flip it up. Pretty basic stuff, sure, but that also means it doesn’t take much getting used to.

Is the Turtle Beach Recon 70 a good gaming headset?

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 sticks to the basics when it comes to its gaming offerings. On most platforms, this is a stereo gaming headset—just a pair of headphones with a microphone. Playing games like Dauntless, Risk of Rain 2, or League of Legends on PC worked great, and anything that doesn’t rely on directional audio will work just as well.

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 gaming headset plugged into an Xbox One controller.
This works with any platform that supports a headphone jack.

If you’re playing on Xbox One or a compatible Windows PC, the headset supports Windows Sonic spatial audio, so there’s even a surround sound option if you really want it. Windows Sonic works well enough, but it definitely offers a lighter touch than other standards (especially compared to the many other options that pop up with other PC headsets).

If you don’t have a platform that supports it, don’t fret. Even in shooters and battle royale games like Fortnite, surround sound offers pretty fringe benefits—it’s not a big enough deal of a feature to dictate whether you’re good or bad at a game.

Does the Turtle Beach Recon 70 block out background noise?

An isolation chart for The Turtle Beach Recon 70 gaming headset, which shows pretty average attenuation for a gaming headset.
You definitely won’t get anything approaching ANC here.

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 offers pretty average isolation for a gaming headset, which is to say: not great. The ear pads are rather thin, and won’t do much to block out more than the occasional noises of the home. Of course, being a gaming headset, the Recon 70 isn’t necessarily meant to do much more than that—these aren’t going to be your next pair of commuting headphones (at least they shouldn’t be).

How does the Turtle Beach Recon 70 sound?

A frequency response for The Turtle Beach Recon 70 gaming headset, which shows a big drop in the bass range.
Frankly, this dip is so steep, we’re not sure this is more desirable than overly boosted bass.

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 offers pretty accurate sound for a gaming headset, with the notable exception of its bass and sub-bass output and a slight dip in output in the 3-4KHz range. Often gaming headsets run into the opposite issue where bass is boosted into the high heavens, so seeing this de-emphasis was pretty surprising.

Lows, mids, and highs

In music, frequency response like this means really punchy bass lines will sound quite less prominent than they should. In the ground below by Run the Jewels, the underlying bassy beat that punctuates the chorus and the beginning of the song is a great example of this. Rather than driving the momentum of the song as it should, it fades into just another background sound.

Even though the Turtle Beach Recon 70 offers accurate-sounding mids and highs, its under-emphasized low-end may be off-putting to some listeners.

In game, output like this is a little less of an issue, if only because the layering and mixing of sounds in a given moment of gameplay is generally less complex than in music. Even if the rumble of an explosion is far quieter than it should be, it’s still going to be one of the loudest things at that moment—you’ll never have any trouble hearing them.

How is the microphone on the Turtle Beach Recon 70?

A man wears The Turtle Beach Recon 70 gaming headset sitting at a PC.
The multi-hinge setup is actually very comfortable.

Despite the uneven audio output, the Turtle Beach Recon 70 offers a more accurate microphone than most of the gaming headsets we’ve seen. For real, I’ve used headsets that cost 10 times what this one does and gotten less accurate mic audio.

If there’s one thing to complain about, it’s volume—this is a very quiet microphone. If whatever chat service you use doesn’t have automatic gain adjustment, you’re definitely going to need to adjust some things. Once that’s sorted, expect a pretty great sounding mic. Listen for yourself:

How does the microphone sound to you?

814 votes

Should you buy the Turtle Beach Recon 70?

If you’re a console gamer looking for something cheap, the Turtle Beach Recon 70 is a solid option.

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 gaming headset's ear cups which are lined with a green material that matches the headband.
Don’t like the green and black? Don’t worry. The Recon 70 comes in eight different color schemes, so you won’t have to look like an Xbox fanboy if you don’t want to.

There really aren’t many considerations to make here. The Turtle Beach Recon 70 sounds decent, offers solid chat audio, feels good to wear over long periods, and it works everywhere. If you’re in the market for a simple plug-and-play option, you could do a whole lot worse (and spend a whole lot more money). That said, there are still plenty of great options, even from Turtle Beach, if this doesn’t quite match your needs.

Regardless, if getting something cheap that works well is the only thing you care about, this is a great option. Just remember to pick up a 3.5mm splitter if your PC doesn’t support a single jack for a mic and headphones.

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 in black and green against a white background.
Turtle Beach Recon 70
All prices listed in USD unless otherwise specified. Prices may change over time, and vary by region. Unfortunately, we cannot list Amazon prices on the site, as they vary greatly by currency.

What should you get instead of the Recon 70?

The HyperX Cloud Alpha has far more accurate audio output, a more comfortable (and durable) build, and better isolation—though it is more than twice the price. The Razer Kraken X also offers eyewear channels, so it’s probably a better option for bespectacled gamers who don’t want to break the bank. If you’re on the hunt for an even more impressive deal, the JBL Quantum 50 gaming earbuds sound more accurate than most gaming headsets (including the Recon 70) and it costs less than $30 USD.

The SteelSeries Arctis 1 Wireless laying on a Nintendo Switch running Untitled Goose Game.
A lot of the best gaming experiences on the Switch don’t need a mic, so it’s nice you can just remove it from the Arctis 1.

Of course, if you don’t mind spending a bit more, you can also get wireless gaming headsets, many of which will offer more features too. The SteelSeries Arctis 1 Wireless is a popular headset amongst gamers who wish to free themselves from the hassle of cables. It includes a USB-C dongle for wireless connectivity to your PlayStation 4, PC, or Nintendo Switch.

Next: Turtle Beach Recon 200 Gen 2 review

Frequently asked questions about the Turtle Beach Recon 70

Yes, the ROCCAT Elo X Stereo under-emphasizes bass notes much like the Recon 70. It costs even less than Turtle Beach’s headset and is about as bog-standard as it gets.

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 presents some advantages over the AmazonBasics Pro Gaming Headset. For starters, the Recon 70 has a sturdier build quality—despite also being constructed of plastic. It also features stronger microphone output and a more consistent price tag, hovering at around $40. On the other hand, Amazon’s gaming headset does provide improved comfort and sound quality over Turtle Beach’s offering. However, its price can range anywhere from $30 to $63, depending on the color you want.

From all our testing, the Corsair HS60 Pro Surround Gaming Headset is the best bang-for-your buck gaming headset. While it retails for more than the Turtle Beach Recon 70, Corsair’s offering is well worth it’s sub-$100 price tag. It offers a study build, comfortable padding, and decent sound—compatible with most, if not all gaming platforms.

The Turtle Beach Recon 70 is a popular gaming headset for Xbox One users as a great bang for your buck option—available for less than $40! If you’re looking for the best of the best, the Turtle Beach Stealth 600 is a wireless headset that is sure to please any Xbox One gamer.