Gaming: the longer it exists, the more hardware you need to fully enjoy it and everything it has to offer. You need consoles, the games themselves, controllers, charging stations, and of course, headphones. There’s no game that sounds better without headphones than it does with them, so finding a pair with awesome audio fidelity is something nearly every gamer wants to do at some point, mostly when they’re willing to splurge a little bit.
But there are a lot of headphones out there, and they are not all created equal. Some have better sound quality, some are better for individuals with glasses, others have nifty special features specific to one platform, and of course, they all have different price points. We’ll be talking about five different headsets in this article, but before we even get into that, we’ll talk about the features you should take into consideration when choosing a headset for your gaming setup, as well as why you should consider a real gaming headset over your average, everyday headphones.
Here are the best gaming headsets:
1. Most Compatible: BENGOO G9000 Stereo Gaming Headset
The first gaming headset on the list is the BENGOO G9000 multi-platform headset. As the name implies, gamers who play on multiple platforms can consider the BENGOO G9000 a viable product for any device they are playing on: whether you are on PlayStation 4 or 5, Xbox One or Series X, PC, Nintendo 3DS, tablets, iPad or even a mobile phone, this headset is compatible with them all. The headset has surround sound with strong bass, ambient noise isolation, and other high-precision rendition of sensitive noise. The sound fidelity is extremely clear and very well balanced, making for an audio experience that is not only particularly immersive, but also capable of giving you a competitive edge.
Along with this excellent audio for the gamer themselves, the noise isolating microphone ensures crystal clear communication between teammates as well. It blocks out extraneous noises so your teammates and friends can focus on what you’re saying. Along with blocking out background noise, this mic is also omnidirectional, so it could be moved to any position you need. There is also a mute button as well as a way to control input volume. While this is a wired headset, the cable is anti-winding braided to ensure longevity and durability. The soft-memory earmuffs ensure a comfortable fit even over long play sessions. At $49.99, this headset is an average price compared to others.
Original Retail $50
2. Most Versatile: Runmus K2 Gaming Headset
The Runmus gaming headset is well regarded for a combination of its immersive sound quality, comfortable over-the-ear-fit, multiplatform capability, noise-canceling microphone and LED display. This headset is designed with gamers in mind and has an adjustable headband and mic to fit any size and shape of the head. The earmuffs are both breathable and comfortable enough to wear for several hours at a time, without causing any significant discomfort. The mic blocks out unnecessary background sounds while picking up the user’s voice with clarity. At the same time, that mic can be muted with an easy switch.
These many features are achieved with excellent design, using a 50mm driver for sound and a 3.5mm audio jack for compatibility with nearly any platform. The adjustable headband and earmuffs are equally comfortable, and a USB plugin allows the headset to be plugged into a compatible port to activate its red or blue LED lights. Finally, there’s a pretty thorough warranty that lasts for 12 months, which is nice. All of this is priced at $42.99, though this varies a little bit based on what color variant you choose.Original Retail $43
3. Best Wireless: Sony PULSE 3D Wireless Headset
One of the wireless headsets on this list, the Pulse 3D headset has a sleek design that, more importantly, had enough power in a single charge to provide up to 12 hours of high-quality audio for your gaming experience, which is achieved through a rechargeable battery. It is compatible with the vast majority of platforms, but the Pulse 3D was designed primarily for the PlayStation 4 and 5, which it can connect to using a wireless adapter. If you want to use it with a different platform, it has a wired 3.5mm connection for use. However, the wireless adapter can only be used with PlayStation consoles, so if you want a wireless headset for any other platform, you’ll need to skip this entry.
There are two hidden microphones built into the headset to capture the user’s voice clearly without picking up any unnecessary background noise. For easy control of the audio systems, there is also a mute button for the mic, a master volume control and a mixer for in-game audio and chat audio. In order to check output sound, there is even a mic monitoring button. Gamers can connect to PlayStation VR and mobile devices with the audio cable available in its package, however, the built-in headset controls are not supported on PS VR or any mobile devices. That too is another reason non-PlayStation player should consider skipping this. The price for this headset varies depending on the retailer you buy it from.Original Retail $100
Model PULSE 3D
4. Best for Xbox: Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Gen 2 Wireless Gaming Headset
Similar to how the previous headset was designed specifically for the PlayStation, this wireless headset is primarily designed to be compatible with the Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. What’s special about that intentional design is that this headset can wirelessly connect to your Xbox in the exact same manner that the controllers do. This makes it very intuitive and simple to use with your Xbox console, with no hassle whatsoever.
Of course, other features are just as important. The rechargeable battery can provide up to 15 hours of play, and is recharged using the USB-C charging cord. The plush and breathable earmuff material makes the Stealth 600 Gen 2 perfect for being worn comfortably for hours of gameplay. Also of note for this headset is that it has a built-in mic that not only improves chat clarity, but also folds into the frame of the headset when not in use. This way, you can put the mic completely away when it isn’t needed, effectively extending its durability. Along the outside of the headset are custom audio presets including a mic mute button, chat versus game volume mixer, a bass boost function and signature sound. Players can also activate a function to hear their own voice in order to fix audio setting to their preferences. Something especially noteworthy is the fact that this headset is also glasses friendly, with soft cushioning that rests against glasses without pressing them into the face or shifting them out of position. All of that said, this headset is a hefty $99, so it does have to be an investment you are willing to make.Original Retail $100
Brand Turtle Beach
5. Best For PC: Jeecoo Xiberia USB Pro Gaming Headset
The Jeecoo Pro Gaming Headset is great for PC gamers looking for surround sound, and it comes with a noise-canceling mic, audio controls and RGB lights to add some aesthetic flair to your gameplay. The speaker unit is 50mm with a built-in USB audio sound card and a USB audio jack, so there’s nothing to worry about when it comes to the sound quality: 50mm is pretty much the standard for top gaming headsets these days. Like most gaming headsets, the mic for this one is designed to isolate the user’s voice from any background noise in order to provide clear communication with friends and teammates without interference. The audio controls are easily accessible on the cord of the headset and can mute the mic, adjust mic volume, adjust game volume, and turn the RGB lights on and off. The headset is built to be comfortable and adjustable to a gamer’s preference so they can play for hours without any discomfort.
Perhaps one of the most noteworthy aspects of this headset is the fact that it is a very affordable $34.99 for the array of features it offers and the standard of audio quality, which is equal to many more expensive models as well. Even though it’s much cheaper than some of the alternatives, it still has a sound isolated omnidirectional mic that can be retracted, 50mm audio drivers, and very sturdy construction. If there was anything bad to say about it, it is only the fact that this headset is designed for computers only. It has a USB plugin only, so it doesn’t work with many platforms. This is its one major drawback.Original Retail $40
Gaming Headset Buying Guide
When you’re playing a game, that game is what you really want to hear, not anything else. You don’t want outside noise getting in the way of your game, whether that noise is the hustle and bustle of a city or other members of the household. That’s why one of the most important factors for a high-quality gaming headset is noise cancellation and isolation. It’s a lot different than just having your volume high enough to overpower other noises, which could be bad for your hearing. Noise cancellation and isolation ensures that other noises are filtered out, but your game volume stays at a reasonable level.
On top of that, noise cancellation generally filters out low level noise, while allowing high pitched noise from the outside to come through. That way, if there’s an emergency, like an alarm or someone yelling for you, you’ll still be able to hear it.
Generally speaking, most professional level gaming headphones have noise cancellation and isolation, and you won’t find too many models that lack such a crucial feature. However, it is also one of the main reasons to invest in such a pair of headphones over a cheaper set of earbuds, which can’t do the same thing. And of course, this noise isolation makes it much easier to hear the actual game, which can give you a competitive edge compared to using cheaper headphones.
One of the primary reasons to invest in a gaming headset as opposed to relying on cheap earbuds is the fact that such headsets almost always have a microphone. Having a mic is naturally a great boon in almost any team-based game, allowing you to communicate with strangers on your team, or with a party of your friends while you play together. Nothing really needs to be said about the value of a microphone to a gamer, so any headset with a microphone is a far superior option to headphones that don’t have one.
Of course, not all mics are created equal. Some have better noise isolation, ensuring that background noise doesn’t enter your voice chat as easily. Some are omnidirectional, allowing you to maneuver them to almost any angle you could possibly need. And some retract directly into the headset, which makes sure they aren’t in the way when not in use, and are less likely to get damaged.
Either way, there are many types of mics out there, and they have different features and benefits. You’ll want to weigh the pros and cons against each other when choosing a headset for your gaming setup.
Exclusive Platform Functionality
While the vast majority of gaming headsets are compatible with nearly any platform, there are some headsets that were designed for and intended for use with particular gaming platforms. When this is the case, such headsets often have special features that are specific to the platform they were designed for.
For instance, a gaming headset designed for the PlayStation 5 may have special features that can only be taken advantage of when used with the PlayStation 5, even though the headset could still be used for an Xbox, a PC, or mobile devices.
This is of particular note to cross-platform gamers. If you have multiple platforms that you play on, then picking a headset designed specifically for one platform is probably not a great idea, even though it can be used with any platform. Keep this in mind when comparing the various headsets available to you.
Wired or Wireless
There are benefits to both wired and wireless headsets. Wireless headsets obviously have a much longer range than wired ones, and lack of a wire means that you don’t have to worry about those wires getting damaged and ruining the usefulness of your headset. On the other hand, wireless headsets require batteries or charging stations, which means they require extra cost for batteries or downtime for charging. Furthermore, wired headsets tend to cost a little less than wireless ones.
We probably don’t need to tell you how important the price of a product is. Everyone has a budget, and everyone wants to stay inside of it. More importantly, they don’t want to get cheated or ripped off, paying a higher price than something is worth. That’s why it’s valuable for a gamer to know what the average price range of high-quality headsets are: to know when they are getting a good deal and when they are being overcharged by their retailer of choice.
That said, there’s a pretty big window when it comes to price range. Some headsets can be as low as $40, while some of the really high-end ones can be up to $99. It often depends on exactly what kind of special features the headset has, but also the brand. It’s up to you to determine whether or not a price point is worth the offered features, especially since you may be able to find a headset with similar features at a lower price point. That said, you at least know that anything over $100 is probably a bit too expensive, while anything cheaper than roughly $35 may be of questionable quality.
Now that all of that has been established, let’s talk about the five headsets up for discussion today.