SteelSeries Arctis Nova 5 Wireless review - Gaming headphone of the year?


Recently, SteelSeries released its latest entries for the Arctis line - the Nova 5 Wireless headphones and Nova 7 Wireless headphones. In case you didn't know, the former is priced at just RM699. For audiophiles and gaming enthusiasts, the Nova 5 Wireless is one of the most anticipated gaming headsets of the year.

That said, does it live up to everyone's expectations? Thankfully, we managed to get our hands on these headphones for around 2 weeks. So, here is our verdict on it.

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Impeccable packaging

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Based on our experience so far, the Arctic SteelSeries Nova 5 excels in delivering an outstanding audio performance. This is a huge W for gamers and audiophiles. The sound profile is well-balanced, providing clear highs, robust mids, and deep bass. This results in an immersive listening experience. Whether you're navigating intense in-game environments or enjoying a music playlist, the Nova 5 ensures every detail is audible.

One of the Nova 5's standout features is its compatibility with various audio technologies, including virtual surround sound, which enhances spatial awareness in games. This feature is pretty useful if you are a competitive gamer who relies on precise audio cues. The headset also supports high-resolution audio formats, making it a great choice for those who appreciate high-fidelity sound.

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Sexy Black? Consider us sold

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Might be too bulky for some, but we always love em' thicc

In addition, this device is a great investment because it is compatible with a lot of devices. For example, you can use it with your smartphone, PC and your PS5 too. This is exciting for Sony PlayStation users because the console does not permit access to other Bluetooth gaming headsets save for the default Sony headsets. Personally, this is a dub in our books.

Comfort is another strong point of the Nova 5. The plush ear cushions and adjustable headband provide a snug yet comfortable fit, even during long gaming sessions or extended periods of use. The design also effectively minimises sound leakage and provides good passive noise isolation, allowing you to stay immersed without external distractions.

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The USB-C charging port, Power and Bluetooth Pairing buttons are located under the right ear cup

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The Volume dial and the Mic mute buttons are placed under the left ear cup

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Having a hard time knowing which sides you are on? Not with this one

On top of that, the headphones are pretty durable. Once, we accidentally dropped the device and there was no scratch on it. We also had the headphones on for 3 hours straight. Safe to say, we didn't experience any hearing fatigue thanks to its lightweight and comfortable build. The bulky design might deter some people, but that is a matter of individual preferences.

In terms of connectivity, the Nova 5 offers both wired and wireless options. The wireless mode provides convenience and flexibility, though the battery life, while decent, might require frequent recharges for heavy users. The wired mode ensures zero latency, making it ideal for competitive gaming scenarios where every millisecond counts.

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The 2.4Ghz dongle allows for no latency while gaming

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Power button located behind the dongle

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Connect to the PS5? No problemo

Personally, we feel the mic is great for casual use. It captures clear voice capture and minimal background noise. However, it may fall a bit short if you need professional-grade voice quality for streaming or recording. The microphone is also detachable, which makes it a convenient feature for those who prefer using an external mic.

Like other headphones, the Nova 5 allows you to fine-tune the audio settings and personalise the RGB lighting. While the software is powerful, it does have a steep learning curve and may take some time to master for those new to it. However, if you use the app on a mobile phone, configuring your preferred sound setup is relatively simple.

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We love the how the UI looks like

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Sleek and simple, just the way we like it

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Look at the amount of presets

Overall, the Arctic SteelSeries Nova 5 offers exceptional audio performance, comfort, and versatility, making it a solid choice for serious gamers and music enthusiasts alike. Its few drawbacks, such as battery life and microphone quality are pretty negligible. So, it won't affect your gaming experience significantly.

Also, it might be quite pricey. But, compared to other Bluetooth headsets we have reviewed before (Soundcore Aerofit Pro, Edifier Comfo Run), this is easily the best we ever had. If we were you, we would get it. No questions asked.

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It might look bulky, but it's deceptively light

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The retractable mic is a pretty handy feature

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Hearing fatigue? Not with this one

Tech Specs and Features

  • Driver Size: 40mm Neodymium Drivers
  • Microphone Type: Retractable, Bidirectional
  • Microphone Frequency Response: 100Hz - 10kHz
  • Microphone Sensitivity: -38 dBV/Pa
  • Wireless Technology: 2.4 GHz wireless
  • Wired Connection: 3.5mm audio jack
  • Battery Life: Up to 20 hours (wireless mode)
  • Charging Time: Approximately 2 hours
  • Compatibility: PC, Mac, PlayStation, Xbox, Mobile devices
  • High-Resolution Audio Support
  • Enhances spatial audio for better in-game awareness.
  • Offers both wired and wireless modes for versatile usage.
  • Designed for maximum comfort during extended use.
  • High-quality materials ensure longevity and robustness.
  • Customisable RGB lighting options.
  • Advanced Audio Customization with the mobile app and PC software
  • Fast recharging capabilities for minimal downtime.


Pros - Excellent sound quality, comfortable design, durable build, advanced and flexible connectivity options, various customisable features with the app.

Cons - Pricey, could be too bulky for some people, clear but average mic quality, audio software could be too complex to handle, average battery life

Summary - Buy it because it's an amazing gaming headphone with decent mic quality, pass if you need a professional grade mic for work.


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