Tritton AX180 Universal Headset (Xbox 360/PS3/PC)
After using the standard Xbox 360 headset for about 6 years now, I decided it was well and truly time to upgrade my gaming headset. Having recently got a PS3 as well, I decided that I could not play online on the PS3 using my O2 bluetooth jabra headset as it was, in a nut-shell, complete garbage.
Anyway, after reading several reviews of different headsets and coming to the conclusion that a) I wasn’t going to spend £100+ on pair and b) they had to be universal – I decided to pick up a pair of the Tritton AX180’s.
Retail they sell for around £45 (Amazon, Game and Tesco), depending on where you purchase them, but I got these for a cool £30 in the end using some reward points.
The Tritton AX180’s are wired, and fully compatible with the Xbox 360, PS3, PC (Windows and Mac) and Nintendo Wii. Being fully universal was an important factor for me before buying, as I needed a headset that would essentially work on the 360, PS3 and PC.
The build quality of the headset seems good and looks the part too, the orange and black go well together and the padding around the ears make these a joy to wear. I find the headband really comfy, its got enough padding in there to prevent discomfort. The Tritton AX180’s also have a detachable flexible microphone, so you can use them as regular headphones as well.
In terms of weight, they seem balanced – a slight bit of weight to them but not super light either. Long usage hours are do’able without getting a sore head or ear-ache.
I guess this varies from person-to-person as everyone is different at the end of the day. I personally find these very comfortable and can wear them for 4-5+ hours without them making me feel uncomfortable.
The headset also comes equipped with a volume/mic controller unit – which is attached to the headset cable. Thus allowing the user to adjust the game and voice-chat volume independently. You also have a small switch on the face of the audio controller that allows you to mute the mic and also select between the Xbox 360 or PS3 as the audio source, depending on which console your playing on.
Sound quality is excellent, not quite your 5.1 or 7.1 surround sound found in higher priced headsets, but the AX180’s certainly produce some quality sounds. I’ve tested the headset with a few games, both on the PS3 and Xbox 360 and also some Blu-Ray movies – excellent stuff, especially at night-time when everyone’s in bed – you can have the volume up on these as loud as you like without disturbing anyone.
Setting these up on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC is really straightforward and should only take a couple of minutes to get them up and running. If you need help to set these up on Xbox 360 or PS3, have a look the PDF (3.7MB) in the link below:
Alternatively, leave a comment below or over on the twitter page and I’ll help you out.
Overall the Tritton Ax180’s are one of the best headsets in the sub £60-£70 category and great value for the money. The ability to use these across multi-platforms such as the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC is a definite plus and the sound is somewhat amazing. I’ve tried various other headsets (at friends houses) in the same price range and can say the Tritton’s wipe the floor with many of them. If you have a higher budget and want an even better sound/gaming experience, you should look at the Tritton AX720’s, Turtle beach PX5’s or the Astro a30/40’s. At the end of the day you get what you pay for right ?
Below I’ve detailed a couple of answers to questions I see being asked time and time again in a bid to brighten up some dark areas for people looking into buying the headset. I’ve also thrown in a couple of handy pointers that may solve some people’s problems they may be experiencing.
Tips and FAQ
1) Do I need a RCA audio adaptor for the Xbox 360 if my console is connected to the TV via HDMI ?
Right, setting these up on the Xbox 360 if you are using a HDMI cable from your Xbox 360 to the TV:
Many (including what it says in the Tritton AX180 manual itself) claim you need to buy the RCA audio adaptor – RCA Audio Cable Adapter for XBOX 360 + Slim, which is not included with the headset.
This could be true for some – if your TV does not have a headphone input slot on it, and only has the white and red audio component connectors instead, then yes, you would need to buy one of these.
However, if your TV has a 3.5mm headphone jack, then you do not need the RCA Audio adaptor for the 360 at all. You can simply plug in the green jack ( which is on the same thick cable as the USB and pink jack of the AX180 headset – see image above for reference) into the headphone slot on the TV. This will allow you to hear the game and voice-chat sounds through your headset. If you don’t have the green jack plugged into the headphone slot on the TV, then you will hear the game sounds from your TV speakers instead, and only be able to hear the voice-chat through the AX180 headset.
2) What about this hissing or buzzing sound some people complain about ?
Some people have reported to hear this ‘hiss’ when nothing is happening (i.e no game or voice sounds are playing through the headset – for example, at loading screens).
Yes, it is present (due to interference on the USB port of the console), but you can make it quieter/almost non-audible by adjusting the volume controls (just adjust the voice chat dial until it disappears) – it also helps if you are using a wireless controller and not a wired one. Using a wired controller on the Xbox 360 causes a lot of interference (see point 3 below about wired controllers)
Please note that when you’re in a game/watching a movie/listening to music etc, you cannot hear the hissing sound at all (it’s actually closer to the sound of holding a sea-shell at your ear than a hissing noise).
3) Tip – Avoid using a wired Xbox 360 controller (Wireless FTW!)
If you play with a wired controller only, on the Xbox 360, forget this headset (or buy a wireless controller). I tested a wired controller with the headset on a few occasions and as soon as you plug the controller in via the wired cable, there is this most annoying and very loud whining/buzzing noise coming from the headset. This is due to interference on the USB ports of the 360 console.
Playing with a wireless controller on the 360 with the Tritton AX180 headset is 100% perfect, but if you run out of batteries and need to go wired, you can forget using the headset altogether – the whinning noise is so loud that you cannot hear the game sounds at all (even with the game volume up full blast) – seriously it will drive you mad. This may be a different story if you are using a third-party wired controller (Mad-Catz, MLG controllers etc), but I cannot comment on this as I carried out the tests with official wired and wireless Xbox 360 controllers.
Wireless controllers give optimal performance with the headset and produce very little to no interference what so ever.
4) Tip – Try not to use USB extender cables as these also increase interference
So I noticed in the audio settings on the PS3, if you have the game volume dial (found on the headset) turned up full, you can hear this high-pitched whinning/screeching/buzzing noise – This issue has been solved and was due to me using a USB extender cable (sold seperatley) to attach the USB on the headset to my USB port on the console – this was done because having the 3.5mm green jack plugged into the back of my TV wouldn’t allow the USB of the headset to reach my console on the shelf below, as the wires are short (See below).
Please note that the thick headset cable itself is 12.5ft long – but the jacks and USB at the end of this wire are on separate shorter lengths of cable. The USB extender cable does add more noise to the line, so don’t use one. The only thing you can do, like I did, was move the PS3 or Xbox to a position where you can plug the jack into the TV and USB into the console, without the need of an extender cable.
Any further questions leave a comment below or drop me a tweet over on the iTech twitter page.
Posted on February 4, 2012, in PC, Playstation 3 / PSP, Uncategorized, Xbox 360 and tagged Audio, AX720, Gaming headset, Headset, PC, PlayStation 3, Review, Tritton AX180, Universal Gaming headset, Xbox 360. Bookmark the permalink. 21 Comments.