Another great peripherals war has been waged over your ears. After every company in the world put out a gaming mouse then a mechanical keyboard, now it’s time for headsets. So gaming headphone.
We understand you don’t want to scroll through every single headset review when all you need is a simple answer: “What’s the most effective gaming headset I will buy with my hard-earned dollars?” This article supports the answer you seek, irrespective of what your financial budget is.
We’ll keep updating our recommendations while we examine new releases and discover stronger contenders. For this particular latest update, we’ve reviewed several fancypants models, namely the Sennheiser Game Zero and and Sennheiser GSP 350, as well as the Audio-Technica ATH-AG1X. For further earthly budgets, we’ve also tested the SteelSeries Arctis 7, the HyperX Cloud Revolver S, along with the Logitech G533, which debuts as our new best mid-range wireless headset.
Kingston doesn’t have the same pedigree in the headset space as the competitors, nevertheless the HyperX Cloud can be a winning device at a cheap price.
Our 2016 headset recommendation remains just about just like our 2015 headset recommendation (and our 2014, for instance): The Kingston HyperX Cloud. Or, if you’re feeling a little fancier, the Cloud II. It’s comfortable, it sounds great, and (best of all) it’s relatively inexpensive. What else would you want within a headset?
True to the name, the HyperX Cloud is amongst the most comfortable headsets in the marketplace. It’s hefty, having a solid-metal construction that belies its cheap price, but sits feather-light around the head. The faux-leather earpieces are generously padded, oversized, and form an excellent seal without squeezing too difficult.
And yes it sounds excellent. As I said within our review, this isn’t a studio-quality group of headphones. It’s got the common gaming-centric bass boost plus a slick top quality, but both of them are subtle enough how the HyperX Cloud competes favorably with bluetooth headphone twice its cost. There’s no Kingston-provided methods to adjust the sound, considering the fact that the HyperX Cloud connects through standard 3.5mm jacks, however, you honestly shouldn’t have to tweak it in any way out of the box. It appears pretty damn great.
The only real downside is the microphone. It’s very flexible, which I appreciate, but has a tendency to grab background noise and plosives while leaving your voice nasally and hollow.
The slightly-more-expensive HyperX Cloud II is, I believe, more a lateral move than a noticeable difference over its predecessor. It swaps the 3.5mm connection for any 7.1-ready USB soundcard with better in-line controls and a little bit of noise cancellation around the microphone, nevertheless, you wouldn’t notice a tremendous distinction between both iterations and I’m unsure the increase in cost makes it worth while.
Regardless, either model is a great choice for a gaming headset. In a increasingly crowded market, the HyperX Cloud nails basically every major category with few significant compromises. I really hope another model improves on the microphone, however, for $80 it’s a steal.
The Cloud Stinger provides solid sound, serious comfort, and an attractive design for anybody who just needs a “good enough” headset without having wallet-shock.
HyperX’s Cloud headset remains to be our favorite, although the company undercut themselves a bit by releasing the HyperX Cloud Stinger. Listed at $50, it’s among the cheapest gaming headsets I’ve ever seen from a reputable brand. And it’s good.
Sure, it’s not quite as effective as the very first Cloud, but for many individuals the Stinger should do perfectly. The plastic chassis lacks a number of the original Cloud’s panache and sturdiness, but looks high-end from the distance and sits pretty slim on the head. HyperX also solved the Cloud’s biggest issue lastly put a volume slider straight at the base of the right earcup and gave it a flip-to-mute microphone, so forget about fiddling within-line controls.
With regards to audio, the Cloud Stinger’s got a great mid-range with minimal to no distortion even at high volumes. The treble is a little underpowered and the bass range is virtually nonexistent, but eighty percent for any given game, film, or song will come through clear and clean.
If you currently have a reliable headset, especially the original Cloud, I wouldn’t say the Stinger is necessary-own. However, if you’re looking for an excellent value on entry-level hardware, this is certainly it. It’s an insane bargain when you compare it to other headsets inside the same price tier.
At just under $100, Corsair’s Void Wireless is generally a good wireless headset, but you will encounter some compromises.
Frankly speaking, Corsair doesn’t actually have any competition in this category. Most decent wireless gaming headsets will run you $150 or maybe more. Corsair’s Void Wireless is priced in a mere $100, which leaves it on its lonesome.
But even accounting for that vacuum, it’s pretty good. Not phenomenal, mind you, but at this price you’re getting a bargain.
I wasn’t really sure what to make of the Void’s weird, diamond-shaped ear cups but after some use I’m actually pretty pleased. The Void Wireless sits a little forward about the head, together with the band resting just above your forehead. It will require some becoming accustomed to, but the outcome is less tension around the jaw plus more on the rear of the head where it’s less noticeable. I wouldn’t say it’s as comfortable because the classical HyperX Cloud, but without a doubt I enjoy it more than its predecessor, the H2100.
The on-headset controls are fairly intuitive, by using a volume rocker at the base in the left ear, plus oversized buttons for power and mute about the side. And it’s got 16.8 million color RGB lighting, if that’s your bag.
The largest design issue is the fact that Void Wireless is heavy. It’s not a problem when sitting up, however, if you look down or search for the headset has an inclination to slide around. I don’t know whether it’s because of the battery or even the metal-augmented construction, however, your neck gets a workout using this type of headset.
Sound-wise, the Void Wireless still needs some work. It appears passable, especially while gaming, but throwing on some music sets the Void Wireless’s limitations into stark relief. The reduced-end is muddy and distorted, along with the whole array of mid-to-high-end frequencies sounds slick, like you’ve applied an excessive amount of compression.
You can adjust the headset’s sound in Corsair’s software, but Corsair’s software is still a lttle bit unwieldy. Superior to this past year, I think, yet still not comparable to Razer, SteelSeries, or Logitech. Also, quite a few users have reported troubles with firmware updates-not really a great sign.
“This doesn’t sound like a tremendously positive review,” you may say. And you’re right, it’s not. The Void Wireless is just not an incredible headset, as I said up top. But it is the best wireless gaming headset under $150, and given just how many wires are affixed to my PC at any moment, the convenience of cheap wireless might be worth sacrificing some quality of sound.
Logitech’s G533 doesn’t have quite a similar breadth of options since the G933, but a much more restrained design as well as a bargain price turn this a robust contender for optimum wireless headset.
It’s a tough call replacing our former mid-tier wireless pick, the Logitech G933, featuring its sibling-successor the Logitech G533. Like, really tough. The G933 is a wonderful headset, with crisp and well-balanced audio and a few nifty design features (like having the ability to keep the USB dongle inside an earcup).
But I’m still replacing it. Why? Well, aesthetics can be a huge reason. If you want an indicator how Logitech’s design language has shifted in past times year or more, your search is over gam1ngheadset the G933 and G533. The G933 was all sharp angles and sci-fi. The G533 on the flip side is sleek, professional, restrained. With a piano-black finish and soft curves, it seems like a headset manufactured by Audio-Technica or Sennheiser or even a more mainstream audio company-possibly not a “gaming” headset. I like it.
The G533’s design is additionally functional. The microphone isn’t as hidden as I’d like, but that’s the sole flaw. The headset is lightweight, durable, and fewer vise-grip tight than its predecessor.
Regarding audio fidelity? It’s not quite similar to the G933, nevertheless the differences are minimal. The G533 lacks a bit of oomph, especially at lower volumes, and its particular 7.1 support is subpar. Those are hardly reasons to keep away, though-the majority of people will run the headset loud enough to counteract the headset’s deficiency of presence, and virtual 7.1 is (in my opinion) basically always bad. The G533 is worse than the average, however the average continues to be something I select in order to avoid everyday.
In any event, the G933 continues to be for sale and it is a perfectly sensible choice for many, particularly if you want console support. The G533 is PC-only, as the G933 can be attached by 3.5mm cable for some other devices. And in case you value comfort over audio fidelity, look into the SteelSeries Arctis 7 too-another great choice.
Astro’s new A50 touts a whole new charging station and better controls, yet still doesn’t put out the audio you may expect from the $300 couple of headphones.
SteelSeries Siberia 800 Wireless Dolby 7.1 Gaming Headset
Following a new generation from the game earphone and Siberia 800 released in 2016, I assumed we may finally break the tie that’s dominated our splurge headset pick within the last couple of years.
But when again, there’s no clear winner at this $300 price-though Astro certainly made some strides toward edging out SteelSeries.
The latest A50’s biggest improvement will be the battery. The brand new model overcomes a lengthy-running weak spot and packs in 12 to 15 hours of life-enough to get you through even a long day of gaming. Better still, it features gyroscopes inside the ears that give it time to detect whether you’ve set it down. It automatically shuts off ten seconds later if so, and then turns back and connects to your PC on as soon as you pick it back. Its base station also serves as a charger, a nice mixture of function and sweetness.