I am posting because I was looking for a comparative review between the Astro A50s and the Turtle Beach Tango before I went out and bought one and I couldn't find one. I saw gamers here waiting for a similar review so I decided to do one. This isn't a professional comprehensive review this is just my take and how I ended up with one over the other. I am not saying which you should buy I am just noting my opinion. IF you have either one of these headsets then you have a great headset and you will be very happy. For me there were some things that stood out over the other and because of that I was able to make my decision and I feel I made the right choice!
So I picked up both the Astro A50s and the Turtle Beach Tangos to test out. I used each one for about two days on various games and tried all the features to help me decide which of these 300 dollar headsets I wanted to keep.
In the end I felt the Tango's are well ahead of the Astro A50s in terms of awesome features like software to create user custom EQ presets for audio or chat, surround angles, removable microphone and Bluetooth, which makes it compatible any Bluetooth device like a real headset. The sound quality on both the A50s and Tango are great so any edge the A50s may have isn't enough to lose out on all the features the Tango's give you. Honestly even if the Astro A50 were $100 cheaper I would still opt for the Tango's. The Astros just don't have enough features, and with no Bluetooth you have to use them with the transmitter only. The Tango's have incredible features and since I can use them with my Vita, smartphone and tablet I feel has more use and therefore a better value.
I am not a fanboy I have wanted the Astros for a long time, when the A50s came out I decided to make the plunge, I was a bit disappointed which lead me to try the Tangos. Between the two the Tango's are it. Turtle Beach really made an awesome headset that is packed full of gaming features and is comfortable and stylish. The Astro A50s are bare bones compared to the Tango and the lack of features and comfort does not make up for the slight sound difference. So on to it!
Setup: Verdict: Tango
Astro A50: It wouldn't power on via the PS3 Slim USB port. I had to go online and install a firmware for both the headset and the transmitter. Once I did that it worked somewhat. Every time I would power off the PS3 and power it on again the transmitter would not come on - I have to keep switching USB ports to get it to turn on. Not what I want to do for a 300 dollar set of headphones. Also you have to turn on both the headset and transmitter manually. No charge and play cable so I had to wait for it to charge before I could use it (I didn't have a long USB)
Turtle Beach Tango: No issues. When you turn on the headset the transmitter turns on automatically - small but great feature. The Tango's also came with a long charge and play cable.
Sound : Verdict: Astro A 50 (but only by a slight edge)
Astro A50: Very nice, warm deep rich sound. I wouldn't say I was blown away but they were nice. They have a bit more bass and volume then the Tangos.
Turtle beach Tango: As with the Astro I wasn't blown away but again these sound great. The Tangos produce a different sound from the A50s, they aren't as warm but they do seem to have great clarity and still sound very awesome.
Surround Sound: Verdict: TIE
Both do surround sound and both sound awesome, listing to both I am happy with either one. The A50s do 7.1 the Tango's do 5.1. I don't think you need 7.1 as most movies and games aren't even in 7.1 and really that is more used for bigger spaces. Also the 7.1 is almost too much for headphones and can make it a little harder to pinpoint direction like footsteps - you still will be able to great it just may be a little less accurate. 5.1 are plenty for headphones and you will be able to pinpoint better in my opinion. So for surround sound, they are both great!
Surround Sound Angles: Verdict: Tango
Astro A50: none
Turtle Beach Tango: 6 surround angles. This is a very cool feature that lets you select 6 different surround angles,. The angles are basically simulating different distance and angle setups for the front and rear speakers and it works well. I use setting 5
Comfort: Verdict: Turtle Beach Tango; Feels great even with extended gaming.
I wore both headsets for extended periods of gaming
Astro A50: They are a heavy headset. The ear cushions feel great no issue at all however the head strap felt uncomfortable after about 40 minutes due to the weight and was definitely noticeable. After longer game time I started adjusting the position of them on my head.
Turtle Beach Tangos They have memory foam, are lighter and they did not get uncomfortable at any time of extended gaming, they never got heavy feeling.
Presets EQs: Verdict: Tango
Astro A50s: Have 3 presets Out of the 3 presets only number 3 sounded great, the other two I doubt I would use they just didn't sound that different yet they weren't as good and the volume was weaker.
Turtle Beach Tangos: Have 9 presets: I use number 4 and it sounds great. Each preset sounds different from each other. There are presets to focus on footsteps, action, chat - you name it.
Customizable EQ: Verdict: Tango
Astro A50: no option for user generated EQ settings, the 3 presets is what you are stuck with
Tangos: Has an awesome feature and software that allows the user to create customized EQ presets for audio and chat. The online community will even upload presets specific for various games. Treyarch even has a preset specific for COD Black Ops 2.
Microphone: Verdict: Tangos
Astro A50: The microphone is hardwired to the headset so you can't remove it. This concerns me because if there is ever an issue with the MIC you will need to pay to ship it to Astro to have them repair it. To mute the Mic you have to flip it up, to un-mute you flip it back down - so this will be getting plenty of wear. I do not like the idea of not having a removable Mic and I don't like having to flip it up and down to Mute and Unmute.
Tango: Has a super bendy removable microphone which is nice, if I ever need a new one I can just order it and put it on myself. To mute the microphone there is button you press which I prefer. I can also remove the mic if I am just streaming music or using it with my tablet or vita.
Chat clarity: Verdict: Tie
Both sounded great
Chat Presets: Verdict: Tango
Astro A50: None.
Tango: 9 chat presets, some even alter the voice pitch. Again you can create custom ones if you want.
BlueTooth: Verdict: Tango
Astro A50: No Bluettoth feature at all. You have to use these headsets with the transmitter or they will not work on their own. You can run a wire to the back of the transmitter from a headphone jack of something like an Ipod but you need to stay connected to the transmitter.
Tango: Bluetooth on the headset. You can connect two Bluetooth devices at once so you can answer or make a call while gaming or even stream music. You can also use the headphones as a real stand along headset with a tablet or smart phone or even a Vita. This feature alone gives me so much value out of the Tango headphones. The Tango's can be used for any Bluetooth device and doesn't need to have the transmitter in range, they can be used as independent headphones - I can take them to work if I want and stream music from my smartphone.
Style: Verdict : Tango
Astro A50: The head set is nice but the stand looks cheap and doesn't form fit the headphones very well. I actually thought it looked bad on the stand, lots of dead space and kind of just hangs there.
Turtle Beach Tango: Looks great, the stand is the transmitter and fit the headphones. It looks awesome with the orange trim on both the headphones and transmitter.
Connection No issues on either one, no static or pops. Both use the 5ghz band