Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Best Gaming Headsets

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The difference that the best gaming headsets can make to gaming is incredible. Crystal clear audio can help you pick up the sound and direction of enemy artillery in Call of Duty: Warzone. Or maybe you’d prefer to hear the popping guitar riffs as you rip through demons in Doom Eternal. Whether you’re looking for a competitive edge in a first-person shooter or just want to improve your overall gaming experience, packing a high-quality game headset should be high on your to-do list.

There are a few points you’ll want to consider when choosing a gaming headset. Price and sound quality are arguably the two most important factors, and we’ve taken both into account when choosing our favorites for this list. Comfort is another thing you’ll want to think about because you’ll have to constantly adjust your headset – or remove it altogether – during longer gaming sessions it’s not where you want to be. Finally, the majority of the headsets we’ve listed here have built-in noise-canceling microphones that are crucial for chatting with your teammates.

Best Gaming Headsets

Our list of the best gaming headsets has something for everyone, regardless of budget. Or, if you’re determined to cut down on cord clutter, our guide to purely the best wireless gaming headsets can be more to your liking.

1. HyperX Cloud Alpha

The best gaming headset right now

The Cloud Alpha bears the fruits of HyperX Cloud’s long heritage of excellence and presents excellent sound and build quality with essential features that are well done, without inflating the price. The stereo soundscape in this enclosed design is punchier in the low end of the building than we would normally do, but the extra bass doesn’t disturb the overall clarity – and frankly, in games and music environments it sounds great.

The dual-chamber design of each 50mm driver is designed to allow low, medium, and high frequencies to resonate without disturbing each other, and you’ll get a sense of that while listening to them. Elsewhere, it’s the usual impressive build quality, generous padding, clear microphone, and a high level of comfort during longer play sessions that the Cloud design has always offered. The inline controls are the only exception to that rule – they feel weak compared to the rest of the package.

We recommend the Alpha over the Cloud II (only just) for its better frequency range and overall sound quality, although there’s little difference between the two models.

2. Steelseries Arctis Pro+ GameDAC

A high-end gaming headset with exceptional performance

High-res audio is informed thanks to the lossless streaming of Tidal et al, and games such as Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus offers full support. The Arctis Pro GameDAC takes full advantage of that crystal clear high-res sound with a 10Hz-40KHz frequency range – a specification that also makes the drivers sound great for everyday audio use, although you’ll notice the difference in really compressed files. But if you plan to use a gaming headset for watching videos and TV on your PC, or music, this is a great choice.

The GameDAC itself is a combination of a digital-to-analog converter that relieves your CPU, a preamplifier, and a control center. With the push of a button and a roll of the dial, the DTS Headphone-X surround can be turned on or off, the chat/game mix can be adjusted and EQ settings can be perfected. The subtle ring around each ear cup on these cans taps the RGB box without compromising overall aesthetics. Overall, this is one of the best gaming headsets right now.

3. HyperX Cloud Revolver S

Elite feel and sound at a premium price

When we first sat down to watch the HyperX Cloud Revolver S, we were a bit confused. On the one hand, it has an incredible 7.1-channel surround sound, delivered through Dolby’s signature digital signal processor. On the other hand, it’s extremely expensive compared to other similar headsets. Fortunately, as one of Kingston’s most understated pair of looks we’ve ever seen (or heard), the sheer comfort and top-notch sound more than makeup for the high price and weirdly placed detachable microphone. And that’s why it’s in our list of the best gaming headsets.

4. Razer Blackshark V2

The best gaming headset from Razer

The Razer Blackshark V2 is probably the best headset Razer has ever made – and that says it all. This mid-range corded headset offers great sound for both games and music, thanks in particular to its innovative THX profiles. The acclaimed film audio company has brought in its expertise to make the surround sound of the Blackshark V2 realistic and nuanced – especially for a handful of games like Apex Legends and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, which have their own optimized profiles.

Unlike some of Razer’s larger headsets, the Blackshark V2 is extremely sleek and comfortable, making it easy to transport to esports tournaments. However, it can be a bit tricky to make it fit properly and the Razer software is sometimes annoying to navigate. Still, the Blackshark V2 with less than $100 offers great value and some innovative audio options for your favorite games. Overall, this is one of the best gaming headsets right now.

5. SteelSeries Arctis 7

The best wireless gaming headset

Wireless cans can cost you over $200, but the latest model of the SteelSeries Arctis 7 lands at a more affordable price while offering louder sound than its predecessors. Meanwhile, high volumes are distortion-free and the overall sound is clear and rich, despite a poorer fit. We prefer stronger performance at lower volumes, and the bass is not as good as what you’d hear with the HyperX Cloud Alpha above.

However, in addition to games, Arctis 7 is also suitable for light video editing and mixing. DTS Headphone:X v2.0 virtual surround sound also provides more game audio details, such as footsteps. Just like previous versions of the Arctis 7 from Steelseries, the current model sits as a reliable wireless headset for gamers.

6. Logitech G Pro X

Best for tournament gaming

The Logitech G Pro X delivers tournament performance for a reasonable price of $130. The headset’s distinguished black design stands out from the competition, thanks in no small measure to its flexible headband and ultra-comfortable foam and leather ear cup options. Simply being comfortable isn’t enough to recommend a product as one of the best gaming headsets, but it’s perhaps the most important quality we evaluate.

If you can’t wear a headset for more than a few minutes at a time, it’s not very helpful. The Go Pro X delivers rich, directional sound out of the box, whether you’re playing on the PC or the console. It’s also the first game headset with a built-in blue microphone, giving you extra sharp voice chat whether you’re practicing with your Apex Legends team or streaming to your online fans. Overall, this is one of the best gaming headsets right now.

7. HyperX Cloud Orbit S

A premium gaming headset with the best surround sound experience

HyperX succeeds in delivering one of the most comfortable and durable headsets on the market, yet with crystal clear audio. The Cloud Orbit S uses audiophile flat magnetic drivers that are as cool as they sound. Essentially a remanufactured Audeze Mobius headset, the Orbit S looks super slim and the giant memory foam earpads are extremely comfortable to wear for long periods of use without weighing your head down.

The great sound quality alone is worth the investment. You can easily use it as your all-round mobile, console, and PC headphones. Using Audeze’ Waves NX 3D sound technology, it follows your head movements to simulate 7.1 surround sound and the results are impressive. However, the software can be a bit overwhelming. It doesn’t change the fact that this is a great sounding headset with a reliable sounding detachable microphone.

8. Razer Kraken X

A budget gaming headset

As an inexpensive alternative to the cheated Kraken X, the Kraken X is a budget-friendly option that excels on the PC for a simple reason-virtual 7.1 surround sound. Available via an app, it enhances the headset’s already good sound thanks to its superior depth, clarity, and definition. It also makes it difficult to go back to X’s standard audio mode. If you bring in enviable comfort and stylish, understated design, this version of the Kraken offers great value for money.

Of course, there are niggles to temper the party (an unmountable microphone is the most important part), but you can’t complain when you get an excellent 7.1 sound at such a low price. Overall, this is one of the best gaming headsets right now.

9. Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE

Best looking gaming headset

The Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE is one of the rare headsets that look as good as it sounds. It offers premium audio that enters audiophile terrain and looks beautiful and shiny instead of clunky and heavy. The SE version of the Virtuoso RGB has a gunmetal-colored aluminum that is stamped with a touch of RGB via the Corsair logo. Overall it looks as expensive as it is. The Virtuoso RGB SE delivered strong audio, including high-res support, in our tests.

Its 50mm drivers also sounded great with gunfights in games like Borderlands 3. The music reproduction of the cans was in the middle of bass-heavy cans like the Audio-Technica ATH-G1 and flatter sounding cans like the SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless listed below. The Corsair’s Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE is a nice pair of 20-hour wireless battery life cans that look and sound good. Overall, this is one of the best gaming headsets right now.

10. SteelSeries Arctis 1

Stellar wireless under $100

Getting good wireless performance has never been so seamless – or affordable. Thanks to the high speed, discreet USB-C dongle, the SteelSeries 1 Arctis Wireless lets you enjoy wireless game audio directly from your Nintendo Switch, Android phone, PS4, or gaming PC, with none of the complicated pairing or interference that comes with Bluetooth based headsets. It is worth mentioning the Nintendo Switch functionality again, as it is difficult to get a wireless headset for Nintendo’s handheld hybrid.

The headset has the same sleek, understated design as the standard Arctis 1, complete with a removable microphone, making it perfect for playing single Switch games on the go. It also features the same powerful drivers and clear ClearCast microphone as the SteelSeries high-end headsets, allowing you to immerse yourself and play competitively with confidence. If you’re looking for the best wireless gaming headset under $100, the Arctis 1 Wireless is the new gold standard.

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