Roccat Noz review: a top-class, ultra-light gaming headset

Audio, Reviews

Buy from Roccat
£59.99

Roccat’s latest headset is the Noz, an ultralight (210g) over-ear model that strives for comfort above all. The combination of an elliptical earpad, light materials and solid build quality should result in a keyboard that remains comfortable for hours and intact for years, but how does it sound? And more importantly, is it worth its £60 asking price? Here’s what we think.

Features

Natural sound: Hear things as they’re supposed to sound with stereo redefined. Top-of-the-line 50mm drivers deliver the perfect audio profile: crisp highs, rich mids and deep lows. A Real-Voice mic covers the full vocal spectrum for authentic sound reproduction.

Extended comfort: A novel earcup design featuring an ellipse shape maximizes ear space for improved comfort and acoustics. Weighing only 210 grams and with a premium fabric that keeps cool during wear, you can game without distraction.

Durable engineering: Solid metal hinges and a stainless-steel headband slider provide structural reinforcement in key areas of use. Despite its toughened design it retains its remarkably low weight through the use of advanced build materials.

Compatibility & convenience: Volume controls and a push-push mic mute button are conveniently located within reach on the earcup. With a mobile adapter included, you can enjoy the Noz’s premium stereo sound both at home and on the go.

Specifications

  • Drivers
    • Type: 50mm Neodymium
    • Measured freq. response: 10 ~ 20000Hz
    • Impedance: 60Ω impedance
    • Max SPL at 1kHz: 112dB
  • Microphone
    • Measured freq. response: 100 ~ 10000Hz
    • THD% @ 1kHz: 2%
    • Signal-to-noise ratio: 58dB
    • Sensitivity at 1kHz: -40dB
    • Impedance: 2.2kΩ
  • Cable: 2.45m dual 3.5mm (with single 3.5mm adapter)
  • Weight: 210 grams

Design

The Noz provide a good first impression, feeling well-built in the hands with enough allowance for flex to prevent damage from normal use. The cups are slightly articulated to face left or right, but don’t fold flat for portable use.

The headband is thin but padded, while the breathable fabric ear cushions conform nicely to the shape of my ears. From what I can see, it’s the same sort of modern material that is well received on SteelSeries’ line of premium Arctis headsets and it feels good here too.

A microphone mute switch and volume wheel are found on the back of the left earcup, allowing for rapid in-game adjustment as needed.

As the monochrome photos suggest, there’s no colour anywhere on the Noz, with the only decorations being small Noz and Roccat wordmarks on either earcup and a subtle Roccat engraving along the top of the headband. That means you’ll have to rely on your other RGB peripherals (like the Roccat Vulcan Aimo 120 modelling below) to light up your room.

With our brief design tour of the headphones completed, it’s time to get to work testing them out in some games. Let’s get started.

Testing

Putting the headset on, you can see that Roccat have delivered on their goal of a comfortable, ultra-light headphone with the Noz. Our review unit tipped the scales at just 204 grams sans cable, while my daily driver – the seminal Sennheiser HD 598 – weighs 245 grams with the cable detached. Of course, there are far heavier headsets than that; the Razer Nari Ultimate are twice as heavy as the Noz at a whopping 430 grams. I think I prefer the velour earcups of the Sennheiser set to the breathable synthetic used by the Noz, but the latter is certainly an improvement compared to the usual leatherette you’d expect to find on a gaming headset.

The Noz sits nicely on the noggin too, just the right shape and size to encapsulate my elephant ears. The noise isolation you get here isn’t outstanding, but it’s on par with other gaming headphones at this price range and of course better than open-ear sets like the HD 598. Likewise, noise leakage shouldn’t be a problem unless you are listening at ear-destroying volumes; the average mechanical keyboard will make far more of a din for your housemates or office colleagues to enjoy.

Using the Roccat Noz in first-person shooters like Counter-Strike, Apex Legends and Battlefield V’s Firestorm mode, these headphones did the job nicely. Imaging was decent, making it a bit easier to locate enemies by their footsteps or gunshots. I prefer stereo headsets than those that use simulated surround sound, as the latter tend to muddy and delay my perceptions rather than help in any meaningful way, so the simple solution proffered by the Noz suits me just fine.

When it comes to critical listening, these headphones are fine for most genres of music but aren’t likely to beat out listening-focused (i.e. non-gaming) headphones at a similar price point. Listening to Look Alive from Guster’s album of the same name, stereo separation is good throughout the song, although the presentation could be slightly cleaner. There’s not a ton of bottom end evident in tunes like Smokin’ and Ridin’ off the Grand Theft Auto V soundtrack, and what’s there is a little flabby. However, treble is reproduced well, with reasonable imaging, which makes up for this somewhat.

The microphone on the Roccat Noz is nothing special: it’s a microphone, it works well enough for Skype calls or chatting with your teammates on Discord, but you’re going to want a proper USB or XLR microphone for more professional tasks like streaming, recording podcasts or creating videos for YouTube.

Wrapping up

The Noz is a simple gaming headset, eschewing a long feature list for just the essentials: good-sounding stereo drivers, a decent mic and intuitive controls. The modern materials used here allow for breathability and durability, while the lightweight design ensures a comfortable fit over hours of gameplay. Overall, the quality provided here is impressive given the £60 asking price – and it makes me wonder whether we’ll see similar designs at a higher price tier down the road. If these headphones represent the future of Roccat’s audio efforts, I’ll be paying close attention to their next releases.

Buy from Roccat
£59.99

Last modified: April 7, 2019

Previous Story

Buy from Currys
£1199.00

Desktops, Reviews

Acer Nitro 50 review: a compact 1080p gaming desktop

Acer’s Nitro 50 desktop is designed to offer strong 1080p gaming and productivity performance in a...

Next Story

Buy from Scan
£90

Other products, Reviews

NZXT Hue 2 Ambient lighting kit V2 review

The screen goes black, and with it the room. Then, a klaxon fires up, bathing the walls with flashes of...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.