When my wife got her SteelSeries headset, I’ll admit that it looked very comfortable. The fact that she can sit wearing it for 16 hours straight is testament to that. So when I got the opportunity to review the SteelSeries Siberia 800, I jumped at the chance. It doesn’t look anything like her Siberia 350, but that’s because it’s wireless so there’s more to house in the headset itself.
Inside the box are a surprising number of things including the headset which has a battery inside as well as a spare one inside the cable box. There’s the transmitter unit, guide book, three SteelSeries stickers and a plug with adaptors for UK, Europe, America and Australia. The cable box has the following cables: Analog, Mobile (if your phone has a headphone jack), Optical, USB and Power. It also comes with separate chat cables for Xbox One and Xbox 360, due to the differences in their controllers.
The Siberia 800 itself is fairly hefty, with a plastic construction. It feels nicely built, unless you pull out both earcups fully, then it feels a little shaky -- although you’re probably never going to need to do that. There is a strip of rubber along the top of the headband, foam cushions along the underside, and of course the earcups have memory foam covered in stitched faux-leather material. The right earcup has a port on the underside that allows you to connect to a pair of regular earphones to share the sound with someone or connect the mobile cable to your phone, and another port for the Xbox chat cables. It also has the power/mute button on the underside and volume slider on the top. The left earcup is where the microphone slides in and out of.
The outside of both earcups twists to allow you to open them. Inside the left one is the battery compartment and you just pull it out to swap it. The other one has a mini-USB port that allows you to change the voice levels if you plug the headset directly into the transmitter. I didn’t find any reason to mess with the levels, as I was told that the audio sounded perfectly clear, but the option is there.
The battery is pretty beastly - it can last an entire day and then some before it starts to run out. When the battery gets low there is a double beep and warning on the transmitter screen every two minutes, but I literally had it on and listening to games or music for about 20 hours across two days before that happened.
You recharge the battery by slotting it into the side of the transmitter, after removing the charged one. The screen shows your current volume, the charge of the battery currently inside and (if the headset is on) the charge left in the headset. I found that it wasn’t very sensitive, as the battery lasts for hours when the transmitter says it has no bars of power left.
The transmitter has two buttons, a back button and the everything else button which also twists to control the volume. If you press the volume button on the Siberia 800, it allows you to change the equaliser profile-- for instance Music when you’re listening to tunes, Voice when you’re in a podcast/VOIP call, etc. Pressing the volume button on the transmitter lets you into the various menus, such as changing which source you’re currently using, switching the equaliser profile or changing a few options.
As mentioned, you can plug the Siberia 800 into your phone. Doing it while the headset is turned on allows you to still hear audio through the transmitter (so, your computer or console), although your phone audio sounds quite muffled. Once you turn off the headset, the sound is as clear as any earphones I’ve used with my phone.
I did note a slight crackle in the left earcup while the headset is turned on, but I quickly got used to it enough to ignore it, as it disappears when there is actual audio coming through. I tried both the Analog and USB cables for audio, and honestly heard no difference between the two. I prefered using USB as otherwise I couldn’t get Dolby Surround Sound.
The voice quality on the other end is nice and clear, according to people on Mumble and Discord. I had to adjust the microphone so that it is away from my nose and up away from my mouth to avoid the harsher letter pronunciations, but it was still fine.
Although I didn’t try it while talking to someone, you can go a huge distance away from the transmitter before it starts breaking up. From where my PC is, I can go to the opposite corner of my three-bedroom house (upstairs toilet room in case you’re curious) before the signal gets too weak. When you move back into range it reconnects instantly, so you won’t miss anything important if you lean backwards the second you lose signal.
I really like the SteelSeries Siberia 800, and as I’d hoped when I agreed to review it, it’s comfortable. My head is on the big side, so if yours is bigger than mine it might affect how comfortable you find it, but if it’s smaller than mine you’ll be laughing. The cushion along the bottom of the headband helps it avoid pressing too tightly, and the memory foam on the earcups is quite comfortable even for extended periods. I would definitely recommend the 800 if you’re after wireless.
SteelSeries Siberia 800 Wireless Headset Review
A comfortable headset with a long battery life, well worth considering if you're after wireless.