What Every Gamer Should Know About Gaming Headphones
The category of gaming headphones has been coined in the past few years and now all the bigger companies are offering dedicated “gaming” headphones.
What most people don’t realize it’s all just marketing.
So called, gaming headphones aren’t any different from regular headphones if we overlook the colorful design and fancy names.
They use the same technology, drivers, materials …
In the end, it all comes down to how much of a competitive advantage your headphones provide…
… or how good is the sound for immersive game play.
4 Important Aspects of Gaming Headphones
It all comes down to 4 categories:
Sound & soundstage
Comfort for long playing sessions
Durability and other features
These are the 4 categories that make any headphones, great gaming headphones.
Sound quality is important for immersion, but for competitive games soundstage has a priority.
Soundstage is the ability of headphones to produce “spacious” sound, the illusion that the sounds are coming from different directions and not from the center of your head.
When you hear your enemy approaching and you can determine from which side, at what height and at what speed, you have a big advantage over enemy players. This is something most “gaming” headsets can’t do efficiently.
If you can clearly hear when the enemy is reloading and at what specific corner, going in for the kill is a matter of seconds and can be the deciding factor between winning or losing.
For purposes of immersive gaming, soundstage also comes in handy as it creates better, more real audio environment.
Additionally you want to pick up every ambient detail and present it in high quality audio.
Bass shouldn’t be overlooked here either, for immersion good bass is a must have.
When playing games, time flies by faster.
Many times you probably meant to play for 1-2 hours and end up playing 3-4 hours and more in a row.
Some of you are even more hardcore and go for the 12 hour playing sessions.
This is why comfort is one of the most important aspects of a quality gaming headset.
Big, plush, over-ear headphones offer the best comfort.
Weight is important too, the most comfortable models are very light and put very little pressure on your head.
There’s no secret to comfort really.
As long as headphones have thick, quality ear pads, aren’t too heavy and have good structural design, you can be sure they won’t irritate your ears even after hours of playing.
When playing in groups there’s always somebody with a bad microphone.
You don’t want to be that guy.
The job of a gaming microphone is to have clean, precise sound that’s easy to understand.
Background noises should not be picked up as they only make conversation harder.
If you’re making your own gaming headset you have many microphone options.
You can get a microphone mod which you can attach to any headphones, or a clip-on mic that you attach to the wires.
For more high end users, streamers for example, getting a good table microphone is almost a must.
In the end, you want your microphone to record only your voice and not everything else around you.
Since gaming headsets aren’t the cheapest and are getting frequently used, durability plays a part.
You don’t want to buy new headphones every few months, because the old ones broke.
Spend your hard earned money on a solid, quality built headphones that will stand the test of time.
Look for quality materials and sturdy structure as these will ensure your new gaming headphones serve you well. You can find the most durable earbuds here.
As for features, things like replaceable cables, ear pads, foldable design all come into play, but aren’t as important for specific gaming purposes.
The Secret of Gaming Headsets
There is a secret about great gaming headsets.
It’s a secret manufacturers don’t want you to know about. It’s actually very simple, but most people don’t bother thinking about it.
To use this secret you have to think with your own head and do some research.
To get the best value out of your money, make your own gaming headset by combining regular, quality headphones with a reliable microphone.
Viola, you can have a top notch gaming headset for less money.
What you don’t know is that most “gaming” headsets use poor quality sound drivers, put some fancy colors on them and charge a premium price for it.
The smart thing to do is to pick good “non-gaming” headphones for your needs and combine them with one of the many microphone options.
The right combination will give you the biggest advantage in competitive games like Counter-Strike where soundstage and details play a crucial role.
Picking one of the better gaming headsets on this list is still a good decision, but don’t expect maximum performance.
To save some money and get the most out of it, combine your own gaming headset.
There are a lot of options, so first know what kind of gaming headset you want to have.
You can go for the ultimate competitive gaming headset for FPSs (first person shooters) like CS:GO and Team Fortress.
But if you’re looking for more immersive headphones pick the ones with better bass and fun sound.
Check below for the best combinations.
7.1 Surround Sound a Marketing Trick or The Real Deal?
Many companies market their gaming headsets as 7.1 surround sound headphones, but what you don’t know is that headphones can’t really produce surround sound.
It is only simulated with the help of software and many times does a mediocre job for a high, premium price.
Getting regular headphones for less money and a good microphone will give you similar or even better performance.
Know that 7.1 surround sound and the like only come into play for PC gaming as consoles don’t have support for it, unless you also buy something like MixAmp Pro which has support for surround sound as well.
Are Wired Headphones Better Than Wireless for Gaming?
It is a fact, wired headphones simply have better sound than wireless models. The reason being the Bluetooth technology itself that is unable to transmit the highest audio quality over air, instead it compressed it and makes it lower quality overall.
Better sound quality is the biggest and most important reason why wired headphones are better for gaming.
Of course we’re thinking in terms of gaming audio performance, because when it comes to convenience, wireless wins.
Being wire free gives you the freedom to move around and not worry about the annoying wires. Simply charge the battery regularly, especially before long playing sessions and you’re good to go.
Grabbing a snack, in between games, with your headphones on isn’t a problem.
Additionally you have to take into account the cost of the gaming headset/ headphones and batteries. Wireless headsets are usually more expensive, plus they’ll take more of your time because of constant charging.
In the end if you want maximum advantage and the best sound for immersion you’ll have to go with wired headphones. There are just more quality options of wired headphones out there.
I’m a serious/casual gamer, what do I pick?
Wired gaming headphones are top choice for a hardcore/serious gamer.
But if you’re a more casual gamer and don’t care about the best audio quality and you’re willing to pay a higher price for convenience, go for wireless gaming headphones.
Gaming without wires in a non-competitive game is just more fun.
They don’t have fun, bassy sound, but they have one of the best detail rich sound with amazing soundstage which is perfect for competitive FPS games.
Get a good microphone, like ModMic 4.0 and you’re set to kick some serious a** on the servers.
All-round gaming headset combination
For better immersion and good competitive advantage you still want good soundstage but combined with some deep bass and clear highs.
One of the best models with these characteristics are Sennheiser HD 598, open-back headphones or Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO which have a closed-back design which leaks less sound, but has worse soundstage.
Combine with ModMic 4.0 uni-directional microphone and you have one beast gaming headset.
These are only our recommendations, other headphones on the list are also great options, all with their own advantages and disadvantages.
Kingson’s HyperX Cloud II is probably the hottest gaming headset right now.
It is recommended and used by a lot of professional gaming teams and in our opinion it’s the best value gaming headset on the market right now, especially considering the price.
When it comes to value for money, you can’t beat them. High build quality and lots of nice accessories, with great comfort and sound, HyperX Cloud II is the go to gaming headset for a reason.
Even if you’re used to your audiophile $300+ headphones, these $100 headphones won’t disappoint you.
HyperX Cloud II is compatible with PC, Mac, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One with the adapter. You can connect them with the 3.5mm plug or use the USB adapter if AUX plug-in isn’t available.
This makes them very versatile and you can easily use them with all of your gaming platforms.
The microphone has been improved over the older version.
Recording sound quality is better and works well in any gaming environment.
It isn’t as flexible, but works well because of its low sensitivity so it doesn’t pick up background noise. You can also detach it when not needed, keeping it safe for later use.
Lower sensitivity is perfect for gaming purposes as you don’t want your buddies to hear your noisy PC ventilator, your dog barking outside or your own breathing. The breathing is especially annoying.
They don’t require any additional software like Logitech or Razer headphones. Just plug in and play.
Truly, a great all-round gaming headset.
The headset is well made, has quite a heft to it while maintaining comfort. It’s made mostly out of plastics, but good quality plastics, better than most gaming headsets and on par with audiophile headphones.
You can expect long life out of these.
The design is closed-back which means it has good noise isolation so outside sounds can’t get in or out. Perfect for gaming in noisy environments.
There is almost no sound leakage so others can’t hear your game and can easily sleep nearby.
HyperX Cloud II are very comfortable headphones.
The ear pads are super comfy, you get 2 pairs, one pleather and one velour set to customize your fit.
Memory foam headband nicely fits on top of the head and doesn’t inflict pain.
Wearing these for hours on end is not a problem and can compare to the most comfortable high end headphones on the market.
The new HyperX Cloud II headset now features virtual 7.1 surround sound. This basically “improves” its soundstage. Positional accuracy doesn’t work as well as with real, high end soundstage headphones, but it’s an improvement over the old model.
You can hear from which direction a certain sound is coming from very easily, this is very useful for FPS (first person shooter) games.
Another change from the old model is noise cancelling. It’s not comparable to high end noise cancelling as it’s more adjusted to the gaming environment.
Sennheiser PC 363D is the best gaming headset for a PC gamer.
This crème de la crème of Sennheiser’s gaming headsets sure is pricey, but it offers more than any other gaming set on the market right now.
The only way to get better sounding headphones is to get one of the high-end headphones on the list (like Philips X2 Fidelio) and combine them with a microphone, like a ModMic 4.0.
You can connect it either via 3.5mm plug or a USB port, depending on what mode you’ll use it in.
You can use it with consoles as well, but won’t be able to make use of virtual 7.1 surround sound. You can read more on this below under sound category.
This headset is perfect for a serious PC gamer who wants the best and is willing to pay a premium price.
It has a very high quality boom microphone that can compare to the best of them.
It is noise cancelling and picks up only your voice without any distortion or background noise. Your voice will be clear and easy to understand, something that’s very important during group play.
Sennheiser PC 363D are open-back headphones meaning they do leak some sound, but this isn’t a problem for the microphone. It won’t pick up sound from your headphones, unless you mess up the settings, which you can easily fix.
As all Sennheiser headphones, they are very well built and don’t have any weak points.
They are big, but lightweight due to their plastic structure.
Due to open-back design it doesn’t have very good noise isolation.
You will hear outside noises and people around you will be able to hear your game.
This isn’t very convenient if you’re playing in a noisy room or if other people are present, but gives better soundstage.
Sennheiser PC 363D headset is one of the most comfortable gaming headsets on the market. It can easily compare to HyperX Cloud II or even high end, audiophile headphones.
Soft and plush ear pads that go around your ears offer plenty of breathing space. Cushioned headband messes with your hair, but this the most damage it will do.
Wearing these for long playing sessions of 8 hours or more is not going to be a problem.
This headset comes with an USB sound card that produces virtual 7.1 surround sound with the help of software.
You need to install the drivers on your PC, connect via USB and set the mode you want. You can choose from 2.1, 5.1 or 7.1 surround sound.
What this does is basically widens the soundstage.
Soundstage on its own isn’t bad due to its open-back nature and with the 7.1 mode it gets slightly improved.
Positional accuracy is better than with HyperX Cloud II, but can’t compare to headphones like Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X which have beast soundstage and are a top choice for FPS games.
Details in games are very good and will really make any game as immersive as the developers have intended.
For the music, sound is pretty good, maybe slightly lacking in bass extension, but overall better than the average gaming headset.
For a PC gamer who wants the best of what a gaming headset can offer today, Sennheiser PC 363D is the way to go.
Best PC gaming headset
High build quality
USB sound card for 7.1 surround sound
High sound quality, better than any gaming headset
Sound and soundstage worse than with audiophile headphones
Sennheiser GAME ONE headset is the younger brother of PC 363D.
Both gaming headsets are very similar, but the GAME ONE and GAME ZERO models don’t have the 7.1 surround sound, just stereo.
In other regards, this is one great gaming headset that you can use with most gaming platforms.
It’s compatible with PC, Mac, PlayStation 4 or older and with Xbox One. If you have the new Xbox One controller you don’t need anything else, for older versions you’ll also need the proprietary Xbox adapter.
The higher price compared to HyperX Cloud II is because of a slightly better sound quality.
The microphone is basically the same, high quality mic from PC 363D. It produces very clear and precise sound while very little background noise is picked up.
If you’re using it for gaming or to have a conference call over Skype, you can be assured your voice will get through sound and clear.
Durability-wise these are as well made as the premium Sennheiser PC 363D. Strong, sturdy plastics make them lightweight, but durable at the same time.
Because of the open-back design noise isolation isn’t very good. Sennheiser GAME ONE leaks out some noise so the best way to use this gaming headset is in a quiet room.
For basically the same gaming headphone model, but with closed-back design, take a look at GAME ZERO. It has much better noise isolation, but at a price of smaller soundstage, so for strict gaming purposes, GAME ONE model is better.
Just like with Sennheiser PC 363D, comfort is top notch.
Big ear cups with cushioned ear pads offer maximum comfort comparable to any other gaming headset.
If you wear it for 8 hours straight, you will probably forget about it somewhere in between.
There’s nothing more to say, when it comes to comfort, GAME ONE headset delivers.
While not having the virtual 7.1 surround sound, stereo is still pretty good.
Because of open-back design the soundstage is much better than with most gaming headphones. You can hear where your enemy is coming from.
At the same time, it has high enough sound quality to produce maximum immersion in single player games.
Details are good, you will hear everything you’re supposed to hear in a game.
As for music, these really need a good amplifier to compare to high end headphones. Without an amplifier they still sound decent and aren’t so bad as many gaming headsets.
To get the most out of this Sennheiser set either combine it with something like MixAmp for console use or get a very good sound card for PC use.
Nonetheless, Sennheiser GAME ONE is one of the better gaming headsets on the market right now.
Great compatibility, comfort, good mic and above all sound reproduction suitable for all types of gaming, make it a great choice.
Compatible with most gaming platforms
Good soundstage due to open-back design, still decent for music
Astro is a well-known company for making great gaming headsets. The Astro Gaming A40 TR model is one of them.
This gaming headset has everything you need for long playing hours, except the surround sound, at least without MixAmp Pro.
The new updated model called A40 TR (Tournament Ready) has a few new features the old A40 doesn’t have.
Like the ability to use various TR Mod Kits like voice isolating mic or noise isolating ear cushions.
You can use Astro A40 TR with all gaming platforms, but you need MixAmp TR for PS4 and Xbox One. Black MixAmp TR for PS (3&4) and white one for Xbox One, both also work for PC and Mac.
The PC/Mac version is cheaper as it doesn’t require the MixAmp.
For those of you who want virtual 7.1 surround sound you’ll have to get MixAmp Pro TR bundle. Just make sure you select the right combo when ordering.
It costs more money, but this is the best gaming sound you can get from a console.
Keep in mind that there’s a different MixAmp for PlayStation than for Xbox, unfortunately you can’t use one version on both consoles.
The microphone is very good and in fact, you get two. One is boom mic that extends in front of your mouth, which you’ll probably use most of the time, and the second in-line mic on the cable.
You can also switch sides of where the mic is attached in case you prefer one side from the other.
It picks up your voice very clearly without any background noise or distortion.
Just make sure to adjust the settings accordingly, the microphone is quite sensitive and can be too loud in certain situations.
Astro A40 TR gaming headset has a customizable design.
You can change the cables if they get damaged.
Purely for cosmetic purposes you can get special speaker tags with various themes and make your headset look unique.
You can detach and change the microphone if you want to save it somewhere safe or if it stops working.
You can also change the ear pads if they get worn out from your long playing sessions and want to replace them with something more comfy or the noise isolating ear cushions.
As for the noise isolation with original ear cushions, Astro A40 TR has open-back headphones, meaning there isn’t much noise isolation and you’ll be able to hear people talking nearby.
As explained earlier, open-back headphones have better soundstage, the ability to produce “spacious” sound which comes very handy in competitive gameplay and helps with immersion in single player.
Additionally you can transform the open-back design to closed-back design with special speaker tags, this is also possible with the regular gen2 A40 headset even though it was never designed to have this feature.
The customization is a very nice option that will ensure long life for your A40 TR headset.
Build quality is what you’d expect from a premium product, a combination of quality plastics and metal structure.
When it comes to comfort these are as comfortable as any headphones can be. You can easily wear them for 8 hours or more without irritation.
The headset has big ear pads that go around your ears and don’t touch any of the sensitive areas.
It is lightweight and once you get used to it, you’ll forget you’re wearing it altogether.
The PC version of Astro A40 TR headset has only stereo headphones.
You can use software to simulate surround sound on PC and Mac, but for surround sound on console you’ll need MixAmp Pro TR which costs a bit more money.
The new MixAmp TR Pro has the new feature of having your own EQ presets. This enables you to customize your own sound and change it depending on who is using the headset or what type of game you’re playing. This simple add-on makes the headset sound even better.
The stereo sound isn’t bad per se as these are open-back headphones and have decent soundstage on their own.
You’ll be able to hear the footsteps of your enemy and predict their movement, you don’t need surround sound for that.
The overall sound is pretty good, it also has some nice bass that makes gaming more fun and immersive.
For playing games, Astro A40 TR headset is one of the best pieces of technology widely used by some very successful professional gaming teams.
As for the music they are only decent and you’d do better to get some other headphones from the list if you want to listen to music as well.
Astro A40 TR is one of the best and most convenient gaming headsets on the market, with a quality microphone, comfort and sound that enables it to compete in FPSs or make any game immersive and fun.
The wires come with a small remote where you can mute the mic and increase/decrease volume.
There is only one thing that kind of bothers, the new steel frame can be very loud.
If you’re walking around or you accidentally hit the frame with your hand you will hear the echo inside your head. This is annoying to say the least, but doesn’t bother when playing games. As long as you don’t rock your head all the time, it’s a non-issue.
This headset is very comfortable. You might need to get used to the new spring design, but once you put it on you’re set to go. No need for readjustment, the headphones sit on your head comfortably for hours.
Some good news for people with big heads, the ear pads are huge and if these headphones don’t fit your head comfortably, no others will.
In the end, comfort is top notch as we’re used to from HyperX.
Sound quality is very good and you can use the headphones for music as well, as long as you don’t need deep bass. These headphones are focusing on details, accuracy but not bass.
Where does the sound most differ from Cloud II? While the differences aren’t very noticeable Cloud Revolver is better suited for FPS (First Person Shooters) and it shows.
While Cloud II has good soundstage and details, Cloud Revolver is even better at it.
You might think the lack of the digital 7.1 Surround makes them worse at soundstage, but the opposite is true. The level of positional accuracy and the level of detail is slightly better than with Cloud II or any comparable gaming headset on the market right now.
The soundstage is only slightly better, but it makes all the difference in a frantic game. With Cloud Revolver you’ll be listening to those footsteps even more closely.
Is it better in every single way than the famous Cloud II? Not really, but it does excel at FPS for which it was made.
If you’re an avid FPS player and want the best performance a one-piece gaming headset can offer, Cloud Revolver is the right pick.
5mm compatible with all gaming platforms
Super comfortable spring design
Great noise-cancelling detachable mic
Superior soundstage and details in a game, great for FPS
Steel frame can be loud when moving
FPS specialization makes it worse for other gaming
Creative has entered into the gaming headset market, this well-known company makes great audio products for many years now and their new Sound BlasterX H5 is a real contender.
Competing with headsets like Cloud II, Sound BlasterX H5 does well. We like it so much we’d like to recommend it together with Cloud II as the best pick right now, but since the competing headset is slightly cheaper, we’ll stuck with the first.
With Creative’s new release you get everything you need in a gaming headset.
With 3.5mm plug-in you can connect it to any modern gaming platform. PC and Mac work flawlessly, PS4 and Xbox One with the new controller work as well. If you have the old Xbox controllers, get an adapter and you’re set to go.
Plug-in and play, no need to download and install any special drivers or play with audio settings to get the headset working, it works out of the box.
The uni-directional, noise cancelling microphone is detachable and keeps its shape well once you mold it to your liking. There is no hiss noise or distortion, the mic works like a high end product.
The design is very basic when it comes to looks, but it functions well. The steel frame is very sturdy and doesn’t bend much giving you confidence it’s going to serve you well for a long time.
The wires are protected by a layer of cloth which makes them nice to the touch and protected from bending.
The sound isolation is good, the ear pads enclose your ears tightly and don’t let too much sound in or out, just don’t expect perfect silence.
This is great for forgetting the world around you and just getting lost in the fantasy game. You won’t bother other people around you, as long as your volume is not too high.
All wires are detachable and the ones attaching to the headphones come with an in-line remote where you can mute the microphone, play/pause and change volume.
Comfort is top notch. Big plush pleather ear pads feel like clouds on your ears, very soft and accommodating. You can easily wear the headset for hours without discomfort.
The removable ear pad cushioning doesn’t seem to invoke sweating, at least in normal temperatures.
The only problem of the headset might be its relatively small size. It fits well on our heads, but we extended it to the max. In case you have a big head or big ears you might want to look at a different model, like HyperX Cloud Revolver with its huge design.
Sound quality is very good, the best feature of this gaming headset actually.
It has a balanced sound signature. Bass lovers will be disappointed as these headphones focus on details more than bass.
Nonetheless, the headphones are great for listening to music for all who like a balanced and accurate sound signature.
The details are rich and plentiful with mids coming out nicely in every genre.
But enough about music, how do they do in gaming?
Very well as well, the rich details come very useful in FPS games where every footstep matters. The soundstage is also very good and can compare to audiophile headphones.
Knowing where your enemy is coming from is always an advantage.
Immersive single player gaming becomes even better with the right balance of sound to recreate as natural environment as possible.
You will enjoy the sound of Sound BlasterX H5 no matter what you do, be it music, competitive gaming or just enjoying your favorite RPG.
As one of the best all-rounders, Creative Sound BlasterX H5 competes with Cloud II well and if you want to use your gaming headset for music as well, the H5 is the best pick.
5mm compatibility with all gaming platforms
Great, sturdy design
Very comfortable, plush ear pads
Detachable wires and microphone
Great, detailed sound quality for music and all types of gaming
SteelSeries Siberia V2 is a gem among gaming headsets.
For the price and how much you get for it, this headset is a real contender as the best gaming headset for a reasonable price, almost better than HyperX Cloud II.
Of course we can’t compare this headset to higher end ($200+), more expensive models as that would be obviously unfair…
… but in under $100 range you’ll have a very hard time finding a better gaming headset.
The Siberia V3 model has been released, but isn’t as good as the Siberia V2 headset, so pick the older model instead.
Siberia V2 is a great combination of comfort, good microphone and great sound for an affordable price.
It uses two 3.5mm plugs to connect, one for headphones and the other for the microphone.
This makes them compatible with PC and Mac without any additional accessories.
For PS4 you need the 3.5mm splitter which you can buy cheaply like this.
For Xbox One you either need a proprietary adapter or if you have the new Xbox One controller, just get the 3.5mm splitter like with PS4.
With some tweaking this headset works with all popular gaming platforms.
The pull-out microphone is pretty good. It’s not incredible but does the job it’s supposed to do.
Your voice will be easy to understand without loud background noise or static.
When you take the headset in your hands it feels okay. It’s not built like a tank, but for gaming purposes it’s strong enough to survive for a few years.
For the relatively budget price you can’t expect the same materials and build quality as with $200+ headsets, it’s just the way it is.
But this doesn’t mean durability is bad, it’s just about average.
The headphones have closed ear cups, but don’t mistake them for closed-back design, they are open-back meaning they isolate noise poorly.
The sound leakage is pretty bad, so people around you will hear the big explosions and dramatic music just in case you play games like that.
At the same time noise from the outside can bother your immersion in the game’s world. If you play in noisy environment, get some closed-back design headphones instead, SteelSeries Siberia V2 are a bit unsuitable for use in noisy rooms.
This headset has big and bulky headphones. This is good as it makes it very comfortable.
Thick cushioned ear pads and suspension headband with the lightweight design help with that.
The headset isn’t pretty to look at, but in terms of comfort, it’s as comfortable as the best of them.
8 hours or more playing sessions have a green light with this headset on.
The best thing about SteelSeries Siberia V2 is the sound.
This is one of the best sounding gaming headsets under $100.
It has decent, but not great, soundstage even though it’s an open-back design. Of course all high-end open-back headphones will be better at this, but those usually cost a small fortune.
It has good positional accuracy. You’ll be able to hear the direction your enemy is coming from, but not exactly from what height and how fast.
For those of you looking for an affordable gaming headset, look no further. Here is Sentey GS-4730 7.1 Digital Surround Sound gaming headset which you can get for around $40.
The headset was originally priced at $80 which would still be a fair price, but at $40 it is a steal.
The low price is probably the result of the unknown company in the gaming world trying to get market share. This is good news for you.
Sentey GS-4730 headset has everything and more of what you’d expect for the money.
The headset is compatible with PC, Mac and PS4 out of the box, for Xbox you’ll need a digital to analog adapter since it uses a USB connector. For most of you with updated drivers, the headset should work without the software that you get in the package, though some report it doesn’t work unless they install it.
The software is very basic and if the headset works without the software for you, you don’t need to install it.
The microphone is of good quality, can’t really compare to high-end gaming headsets like Sennheiser PC 363D or AntLion ModMic, but it does its job well.
It’s omni-directional so it picks up all the sounds around you which isn’t optimal, but not a deal breaker either. The sound recorded is clear without hissing or breakage and your gaming friends will have nothing to complain about.
One special feature of the microphone is the light at the tip which tells you when the microphone is active and when muted. This is a helpful feature when playing in groups and you accidentally mute your mic, you will know immediately…
…but it becomes a bit of a nuisance if you play in the dark when the light can be distracting, in any case you can just detract the mic low enough so you don’t get bothered.
When playing alone, just mute the mic with the in-line controls and the light will turn off.
Another special feature of this gaming headset are the vibrating ear pads. Each ear pad has a vibrating device inside that reacts to low, deep tones, bass. So every time you hear an explosion or shot in a FPS game you feel it too.
Some of you will probably like it, some not, in any case you can always turn it off if you don’t like it.
Once you take the headset out of the box you will be impressed by the heft and quality of build for such a low price. There aren’t many gaming headsets that are built this well, in fact many more expensive ones are often more “plasticy” and have worse structural design.
There are 2 colors available, black GS-4730 and white GS-4731.
Because of closed-back design, noise isolation is pretty good which is perfect if you play with other people in the room. You won’t hear much of the outside noise, and others won’t hear your late night gaming, if that is your thing.
Big, soft pleather ear pads are very comfortable even for many hours in a row. The headband is just firm enough to keep the headset on without any discomfort.
The only problem you’ll probably have is pleather which doesn’t breathe and makes you sweat around your ears after a while. As long as you are the only one using the headset there is no concern.
When it comes to sound for music, the headphones don’t do very well as you will clearly hear the deficiencies if you use higher-end audiophile headphones, but a non-audiophile should be happy with it.
For gaming use, the headset does great. All the sounds are very clear and the bass seems to really come alive in all games. The explosions and gun fire sound especially good.
Soundstage is also better than with most other gaming headsets, you will be able to hear where the sound is coming from if the game uses the right sound engine. The 7.1 software slightly improves soundstage, but don’t expect night and day difference.
Overall, Sentey GS-4730 offers everything an affordable gaming headset needs and a bit more. Good, durable design, great comfort, nice special features, a mic you can rely on and good gaming sound quality all for an affordable price.
For those on a tight budget looking for a reliable gaming headset the Creative HS-800 Fatal1ty is a great option.
For a dirt cheap price of $20 you will have a hard time finding a better gaming headset.
If you are into the eSports than you’ve probably heard about Fatal1ty and his achievements, this headset is the result of a famous gamer cooperating with Creative Labs company.
The headset uses 2 standard 3.5mm jacks to connect so you can use it with PC, Mac, Tablet, iPhone, PS4 or Xbox One with an adapter. One is for headphones and one for the microphone.
The microphone is noise cancelling and detachable which is a nice feature in such a cheap model. When you don’t need your mic you can easily detach it.
The sound quality of the mic is good, won’t beat any records, but isn’t too sensitive once you tweak the settings. You should be able to talk with your friends normally even if you are a heavy breather or live in a noisy area.
The build quality is OK for the price, in truth the headset feels a bit flimsy, but this is to be expected.
As long as you treat your headset normally and don’t throw it around it should be fine.
The ear pads are over-ear closed-back design so they provide good noise isolation. This means others won’t be able to hear what you are hearing and at the same time outside noise won’t bother your gaming experience.
With the velvet ear pads the comfort is very good. You can easily wear it for hours on end without discomfort.
One small issue that might bother people with big heads is the pressure the headband is creating. Some people complain about it being too strong, though all headphones stretch after a while so this is only a problem of a new model or for people with really wide heads.
One bigger comfort issue is for those who wear glasses, unfortunately this gaming headset isn’t too comfortable for people with glasses, if this is you, pick some other model and save yourself from discomfort.
Sound quality is better than what you’d expect from a $20 budget gaming headset. It cannot really compare to high-end models of course, but it doesn’t disappoint.
The detail in games is good, the bass is also better than with other budget headphones and if you are spending this little money you really cannot be disappointed with the sound output.
The soundstage is decent, not great, but good enough for a casual gamer.
All in all, if you are looking for a cheap gaming headset, you can’t go wrong with Creative HS-800 Fatal1ty headset.
Comfortable velvet ear pads
Good, detachable microphone
Good sound for the price
Budget model that can’t really compete with higher-end
Philips X2 Fidelio are the best all-round audiophile headphones for gaming.
The amazing soundstage, sound clarity and rich details will make you hear things you’ve never before heard in a game.
While Philips isn’t known for making high end headphones, their Fidelio flagship is truly amazing.
You can use these headphones for music and gaming without sacrificing anything, as long as you’re willing to pay the money for them.
These headphones are amazing for competitive or immersive gameplay and no “gaming” headset can compare to them, period.
The headphones use the standard 3.5mm audio plug so you can make them compatible with all gaming platforms.
PC and Mac are compatible from the start, for PS4 and new Xbox controller you need a 3.5mm splitter and with the old Xbox you’ll have to get an adapter.
Philips X2 Fidelio headphones aren’t a headset, they don’t have a microphone so you have to combine them with one.
The best solution is to get a ModMic 4.0 uni-directional mic to create the ultimate gaming headset.
This combination will give you the best competitive advantage, audiophile sound quality for immersion and music and a clean, dependable microphone all in one package.
The build quality is top notch. They’ve used a lot of metal and high quality plastics. We can easily say these are made like a tank, not that we think you would badly treat your almost $300 pair of headphones.
The design is open-back which doesn’t offer good noise isolation, but helps with soundstage.
These headphones need a quiet room to offer the biggest advantage. Because of bad noise isolation you won’t be able to hear all the details if you’re playing in a loud room.
Additionally others around you will be able to hear your game as the sound leakage is quite high.
They are big and bulky and even though they aren’t intended for gaming, offer top notch comfort.
Big, plush replaceable ear pads with suspension headband make them very light on your head. It’s very easy to forget you’re wearing them.
Just make sure to fit them in, the clamping force in the beginning is quite tight, but gets softer after a while.
Comfort is awesome as you’d expect from a premium pair of audiophile headphones, you’re paying good money after all.
This is where Philips X2 Fidelio headphones beat all the competition. No gaming headset comes close to the width and depth of the soundstage.
The high end gaming headsets with virtual 7.1 have pretty wide soundstage, but lack the depth.
With X2 Fidelio you will hear from what direction and height the sound is coming from, plus it’s a lot more sensitive and detailed which gives you an even bigger advantage.
Dominate the battlefield as the enemies reveal to you over great distances with the slightest noise they make.
Immersive gameplay becomes a new thing as these headphones reproduce such good sound you can’t know whether it’s real or not. If a helicopter flies over a house in a game you’ll be thinking it’s really flying over your house.
The bass isn’t too strong which is a good thing for the midrange to come alive.
All in all, Philips X2 Fidelio are the best all-rounder audiophile headphones that are also exceptional at competitive and immersive gaming.
Compatible via 3.5mm plug
Great build quality, made like a tank
Very comfortable after a while
Amazing soundstage, width and depth
High end, audiophile sound with clarity, balance and detail
They are fun to listen to with their strong bass making every game more fun and immersive than before, while also giving you the advantage in competitive play with big soundstage.
Regular 3.5mm jack is used for connection making them compatible with PC, Mac and PS4. To combine them with a microphone you’ll need to get the 3.5mm splitter for PlayStation and the new Xbox One controller.
If you still have the old Xbox controllers without 3.5mm plug-in then you’ll need an Xbox adapter that you can buy from Microsoft.
You can combine any microphone from our list, except the V-Moda Boom Mic as it requires detachable cables which Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro don’t have.
Put on a ModMic 4.0, a clip-on from Sony or Zalman or go for the higher end table microphone, all of the options will give you a powerful gaming headset. Click for gaming mi comparison table.
Like we said before, these headphones are built like a tank. Strong thick plastics, metal structure and velour or pleather ear pads all make one heavy pair of headphones…
… but heft is the price of high build quality. These are professional, studio headphones intended for heavy use.
You can easily expect many years of life from them.
The design is closed-back having great noise isolation. In fact DT 770 Pro are one of the better isolating headphones on the market.
Put them on and completely cut out all outside noise for maximum immersion.
There’s also no sound leakage so you can easily use them for late night gaming when somebody is sleeping nearby. They won’t be bothered.
Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro are quite heavy, but this doesn’t impact the comfort.
If you buy the 80 or 250 ohm versions you get velour ear pads instead of pleather ones.
With velour ear pads comfort is much better, even if the clamping force is a bit tight in the beginning. Big ear cups go nicely around your ears not touching any sensitive areas.
Generally, you can easily wear them for 8 hours or more if this is how long you’re playing.
Soundstage is surprisingly good for a closed-back design. In fact it has better depth and width than most high end, virtual 7.1 surround sound gaming headsets.
Good positional accuracy comes in handy with competitive play when you want to know your enemy position by listening to details.
Soundstage might not be as good as with open-back headphones like Sennheiser HD 598 or Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X, but those are a different design altogether.
For a similar model with even better soundstage, check the Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro which are open-back, amazing competitive headphones.
What Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro really excel at is immersion. They have strong bass and combined with good soundstage it makes for one fun and dynamic pair of headphones.
Explosions and ambient sounds have never sounded so good.
They are great for music too, as long as you’re not looking for flat response, because the bass can be a bit controlling at times.
If you have an amplifier get the 250omh version, if not the 80ohm version is the most versatile. But if you plan on using the headphones with your smartphone or MP3 player, then get the 32ohm version which is the easier to drive, meaning you don’t need a lot of power to make them loud.
If you’re looking for great, noise isolating headphones with good soundstage, great immersive sound and strong bass in a durable and comfy design, Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro are you best choice.
Connect via 3.5mm plug, good for most platforms
Built like a tank
Amazing comfort with velour ear pads
Best noise isolation in class for late night gaming
Good soundstage for closed-back design
Strong, emphasized bass that’s fun for music and immersive gaming
Design hasn’t changed much in visuals from the older AD700 model. Big ear cups, nice cloth ear pads and light suspension headband.
Durability isn’t top notch, but isn’t bad. They are well-made headphones, but many parts of this newer model have been replaced with lower quality plastics.
There are more durable, audiophile headphones for the same price out there, but since you’ll mostly be using these at home they should be fine.
Because of open-back design there is substantial sound leakage.
All that soundstage comes at a price and one is bad noise isolation.
Other people in the same room will be able to hear your music or game so it’s best to use them with that in mind. You don’t want to annoy your family members or your wife when they want to sleep.
Comfort is very good, if you haven’t tried many high end headphones, these will feel like the most comfortable headphones on the planet.
They aren’t of course, but there isn’t much to complain about comfort.
The ear cups are really big to fit even the biggest ears, ear pads are nicely clothed though not the thickest and some of you will touch the drivers with your ears.
They are very light and put on very little pressure.
For an average user or even someone with a bigger head these will be very comfortable.
Well to begin, Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X have monster soundstage. When you put them on you feel like you have a concert hall on your head.
The sounds are coming from different directions and you can very easily distinguish it.
Positional accuracy is superb, coming very handy when you want to pinpoint the footsteps in a competitive FPS like Counter Strike: Global Offensive or Call of Duty.
The level of detail is amazing and something you don’t usually see in $100 headphones and definitely not in any gaming headsets. If you think you have a good gaming headset, try these and you’ll hear the difference.
What they lack thought is bass. There is barely any bass output which doesn’t help with immersive gaming or listening to music.
The details are still very nice, but headphones like Sennheiser HD 598 or Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro are better because they create a full, rich game sound you want to immerse yourself in.
In the end, if you want absolute advantage in FPSs like CS:GO, get Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X with monster soundstage, accuracy and detail rich sound.
3.5mm plug works with most popular gaming platforms
Good comfort even for big headed people
Best in class soundstage
Extreme accuracy and level of detail reveals enemy positions
Flat, audiophile grade sound
Very little bass, bad for immersive gameplay
Durability is slightly worse than with the previous model
Best Gaming Microphones – Short Reviews
Tip: For consoles, use 3.5mm splitter to connect both, headphones and microphone.
The AntLion’s ModMic is known as one of the best headset, boom microphones on the market right now.
The ability to attach it to any headphones you own, high quality sound and user friendly design make it a top choice for anyone building a headset.
If you want the best for your headset, get this one.
You can choose many different variations:
The difference between uni-directional and omni-directional is in the way microphone picks up sound.
The omni-directional picks up all the sound around it, like in a circle so it will pick up more background noise.
The uni-directional picks up sounds from one direction which makes it the best option for a gaming headset.
This microphone fits to any headphones as it features a very robust attachment mechanism using magnets. You simply put a small magnet “sticker” on one ear cup and you’re ready to mount the microphone.
You can easily attach it or detach it as many times you want.
The boom is adjustable so you can always find the best position for it and if you get the regular version (non-muteless) you can also mute it by in-line controls.
The sound quality is great, very clean and without any hiss noises or distortion, perfect for gaming.
The only annoying thing is the double cables, but AntLion has a solution for that as well. You get 5 clip accessories in the package with ModMic which nicely solves the problem of dealing with 2 separate cables. You can get additional 5 for only $1.
To make the best gaming headset, get AntLion’s ModMic 4.0 microphone, you won’t be disappointed.
V-MODA BoomPro is a well-known boom microphone that is great for making a gaming headset.
The only problem is that your headphones need to have detachable cables.
This is basically a new headphone cable with a boom microphone attached to it. Replace the old cables with this one and you have a very nice headset.
The good thing about it is that you only need one 3.5mm input to use it, so it works with PlayStation 4 and Xbox One with the new controller or the adapter. No need to get the 3.5mm splitter like you’d need with double plug-ins.
The sound is clean without hiss or distortion and has just the right amount of sensitivity. It will pick up very little background noise which is exactly what you want for a gaming headset.
If you already have headphones with detachable cables or plan on getting them, V-MODA BoomPro microphone is a smart and quality solution.