(Pocket-lint) - Setting out on a mission to find the very best gaming headsets was a daunting task. There are a multitude of options out there - wired, wireless, closed and open cup designs, stereo and surround sound headsets, oval and round earcups, leather and material finishes, the list goes on and on.
A lot of what makes a great gaming headset will be down to personal preference, but what we were looking for was a product that struck a perfect balance between quality of design, value for money and features that gamers would love. To create this shortlist, we worked through a mass of PC gaming headsets (many of which are also compatible with consoles) to whittle down to a list of finalists that we're sure you'll love.
If you're looking for the best gaming headset for your money, then keep with us as we break down the very best we've seen and the reasons why you should consider adding them to your shortlist.
Overall best surround sound gaming headset
- 100 mm Audeze planar magnetic drivers
- Waves Nx fully immersive 3D audio
- Closed-back earcup design
- 10Hz–50,000Hz frequency response
- 24 bit, 96KHz sample rate and bit depth
- USB-C, 3.5mm and Bluetooth connection options
- Uni-directional Electret condenser microphone
This is one of the most interesting gaming headsets on our list thanks to Waves Nx head tracking technology that delivers "immersive 3D audio" by changing the sound to account for the tilt or turn of your head as you play. Combine this with 7.1 virtual surround sound and hi-res audio options and you have some seriously impressive positional audio.
The Mobius boasts awesome 100mm planar magnetic drivers which are capable of delivering a max of 50,000Hz frequency response, with 96Khz sample rate and 24-bit depth resulting in a rich, impressive and convincing sound.
Deep earcups, comfortable padding and a solid build quality round off a superb package.
The Audeze Mobius is an incredibly interesting (and incredibly expensive) gaming headset that seemingly offers it all. A premium high-quality design, fantastic audio, brilliant comfort and more. All in one package.
Most versatile wireless gaming headset
SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless
- 10–40,000 Hz frequency response via 40mm Neodymium drivers
- 102 dB SPL sensitivity/32Ohm impedance
- Ski Goggle headband and AirWeave material earcups
- 20-hour battery life via swappable batteries
- 2.4Ghz wireless and Bluetooth 4.1 support
- DTS Headphone: X v2.0 surround sound/Dolby audio via optical input
- Compatible with PC and PS4 (all variants)
- ChatMix on-the-fly adjustment
- 40-foot wireless range
- Bi-directional noise-cancelling retractable microphone
SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless continues to be one of the very best gaming headsets available, thanks to great sound and incredible versatility.
It has a variety of inputs including optical and USB for PC that allow you to take advantage of the Dolby audio and DTS virtual surround sound processing power inside the transmitter box. Built-in Bluetooth and an understated design mean it can also be taken with you out of the house in place of standard headphones.
Two batteries are included, one in the headset and one in the base station which means one is always on charge so you never need to plug the headset in. The result of all this is a marvellously comfortable wireless headset with a variety of inputs, features and functionality that deliver a superb sound quality whatever you're doing and whatever gaming system you're playing on.
The SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless is an expensive option but you get what you pay for, with great sound and convenience.
The most comfortable wireless gaming headset
Astro A50 wireless gen 4
- Open Air Over-Ear design
- Cloth ear cushions upgradable to leather
- 40mm Neodymium Magnet drivers with 20Hz - 20,000Hz Frequency Response
- Tuned Astro Audio V2 and two years free access to Dolby Atmos
- Game/voice balance button
- Optical Pass-through, USB Power & Soundcard, USB Charging Port, AUX In / Mic out (TRRS 3.5mm) inputs via basestation
- Compatible with Astro Gaming Command Center
- Up to 15-hours battery life and up to 30ft wireless range
The Astro A50 wireless is an uber-comfortable gaming headset. Sporting velour style cloth ear cushions, we feel like we're wearing small puffs of heavenly goodness resting on our ears. It's also lightweight and easy to wear for hours and hours.
Astro A50 is also able to deliver fantastic sound quality with deep bass notes and impressively convincing surround sound. A number of equaliser settings tuned Astro Audio V2 and Dolby options give you plenty to choose from sound-wise.
When not in use, this headset is simply docked into the charging base which connects to your computer via MicroUSB for power and audio. Thanks to 15-hour battery life and convenient charging we found we were able to get a full day's use out of this headset on a regular basis without any need for extra juice.
The microphone on the Astro A50 is a pleasure to use too. It has deep and warm tones and manages to cancel out a fair amount of the surrounding environmental noise during use. It can be tweaked and customised in the software and adjusted to your personal preference.
We liked the sidetone capabilities here that allow you to hear your own voice and gauge volume with ease.
The Astro A50 is in our mind, one of the best PC gaming headsets available. It's convenient, capable and brilliantly designed. It's easy to pick up and use and equally easy to drop in the charging dock when you need to.
We're rarely left wanting when using this headset and would happily recommend it to anyone who is looking for a gaming headset that delivers constant comfort throughout the day.
Best closed cup wireless gaming headset
EPOS GSP 670
- 10–23,000 Hz frequency response
- 112 dB sound pressure level
- Dynamic, closed transducer
- Bi-directional mic with 10–7,300 Hz frequency response
If you prefer a tight-fitting, all-encompassing, passive noise-cancelling headset then look no further than the EPOS GSP 670. This is a gaming headset, that not only offers some serious style, but also great sound as well.
It's tighter than other headsets, but that's no bad thing as it won't fly off your head if you turn too quickly. This, along with the closed-back design means it blocks out a lot of background noise and keeps you immersed in your games.
The GSP 670 also shines thanks to a dual-connectivity option where you can connect via both a low-latency dongle and Bluetooth at the same time.
20-hour battery, fantastic sound, convenient controls and more round off an awesome headset.
This is certainly one of the best wireless gaming headsets available. If you want great sound, a good looking headset and something that's as durable as it is feature-rich then the GSP 670 is it.
Best headset for pro gamers
Astro A40 TR with MixAmp Pro TR
- Dynamic, Open 40mm drivers with 20 - 20,000 Hz frequency response
- 48 kHz @ 16-bit game audio/16 kHz @ 16-Bit
- Cloth ear cushions upgradable to leather
- Tuned Astro Audio V2 with two years free access to Dolby Atmos
- Optical Pass-through, USB 2.0 Full Speed and USB Audio 1.0, Aux port line in/out
- Xbox One/PC compatibility switch
- Four customisable EQ modes, Dolby virtual surround sound, optional Dolby Atmos
- 3-metre Micro-USB and Optical cables, detachable 3.5mm audio cable
- 6.0mm Uni-directional boom microphone
- Optional voice isolating upgrade, sidetone and noise gate settings in software
If you're serious about sound and your gaming, then the Astro A40 Tournament Ready edition might well be for you. Another comfortable headset from Astro, but a wired one that includes the option to daisy chain multiple headsets together for LANs or eSports events.
The Astro A40 TR is an undeniably brilliant gaming headset. It's snazzy, comfortable and packed full of great sound possibilities. Positional audio is great in-game and you can hear footsteps of your enemies or the rumble of a car in the distance with ease.
Other highlights include long connection cables, easy controls on the MixAmp and a decent noise-isolating microphone too.
If you're looking for a serious headset that's as useful in an eSports arena as it is at home, then the Astro A40 TR might well be it. It's comfortable to wear, fantastic to hear and easy on the eye too.
Best affordable wireless surround sound headset
SteelSeries Arctis 1 Wireless
- 40mm drivers
- 20-20,000 Hz frequency response
- 32 Ohms impedance
- SteelSeries classic cushion design
- Wireless and wired options via MicroUSB and USB-C dongle
- MicroUSB charging cable
- 3.5mm jack
- Equaliser pre-sets, mic volume/sidetone settings
- 9-metre/30-foot wireless range
- 2.4GHz wireless
- Approximately 20 hours battery life
- Bidirectional Noise-Cancelling
- 100-6,500Hz frequency response
- Detachable design
- Mic mute button on the rear
If you're the sort of gamer that likes to play on a multitude of different devices, then you might find the Arctis 1 wireless highly appealing.
This is a wireless gaming headset that not only works on PC, but is also compatible with PS4, Nintendo Switch and even your phone. You get all those connectivity options, plus the great sound of the Arctis range at a pretty incredible price.
The build quality isn't quite as good as others we've seen but for the price this headset has surprisingly good and sound and plenty more to offer. That includes 2.4GHz wireless audio transmitted over a 30-foot range for up to 20 hours. Up to 20,000Hz frequency response also results in clear and rich audio thanks to the high-quality drivers.
Despite the lack of Dolby or DTS surround sound options, this headset sounds great in-game. If you want a headset that can connect to multiple devices, has a decent battery life and still has good audio too then this is it.
We're thoroughly impressed with the Arctis 1. It's an affordable, comfortable and feature-packed headset that's well worth considering. If you want a headset that can connect to multiple devices, has a decent battery life and still has good audio too then this is it.
There's no Bluetooth, but the USB-C wireless dongle is multi-capable and a great alternative. If you've been eyeing the likes of the Arctis Pro Wireless but were put off by the price, then this headset is the one for you.
Most stylish gaming headset
Logitech G Pro X wireless gaming headset
- 50mm Neodymium drivers with 20 Hz – 20 kHz frequency response
- 32 Ohm impedance and 91.7 dB sensitivity
- Faux leather or cloth ear cushion options
- 1.8m USB-C charging cable
- Virtual DTS Headphone:X 2.0 surround sound on PC
- Noise-cancelling microphone with Blue Voice technology
- 20 hours battery life
If style and looks matter to you and you're bored of the same old boring headsets, then this Logitech headset might be an option. Styled more like traditional headphones, the Logitech G Pro X wireless is far more understated, doesn't have any RGB and as is pleasing to the eyes as it is to the ears.
It's comfortable, thanks to a choice of faux leather and cloth styled ear cups. It also has large drivers that offer a good range of sound with deep bass levels and a brilliantly immersive sound quality that gamers will love.
One of the main selling points of this headset is the microphone. This headset makes use of the Blue Voice technology (within Logitech G Hub) that allows you to customise the live sound captured from the microphone and adjust it on the fly.
All-in-all, the Logitech G Pro X wireless is an impressive headset for the money. It's comfortable and delivers great sound, but most importantly it does so with style. Unfortunately, there's no Bluetooth, 3.5mm connection and you can't connect to your phone using USB-C either. But if you're gaming on PC and that's all you need it for then you won't be disappointed.
We found this headset was capable of delivering rich sound, despite not having as high a frequency response as other headsets on this list. It's also incredibly comfortable and the choice of (included) ear cup options makes it thoroughly appealing too. The added bonus of Blue Voice tech might be a bit of a gimmick for some, but is a nice touch.
Best high-fidelity gaming headset
Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless XT
- High-fidelity 96kHZ/24-bit audio
- Bluetooth with Qualcomm AptX HD, 24-bit audio
- Hi-Res Certified
- 32 Ohms @ 2.5kHz impedance
- 109db sensitivity
- 20-40,000Hz audio response over wireless
- RGB lighting on earcups
- Equaliser pre-sets, surround sound, RGB illumination controls and mic controls in software
- Corsair iCue compatible
- Virtual surround sound with Dolby Atmos
- RGB lighting on both earcups and mic
- Omni-directional microphone with 2.0k Ohms and 100Hz – 10,000Hz frequency response
If you think of yourself as a bit of an audiophile and only the very best audio is enough whatever you're doing then the Corsair Virtuoso RGB wireless XT may be for you. This is an upgrade to the original Virtuoso with a number of nice new changes that make it even more appealing.
Multiple connection options now include Bluetooth connectivity with Qualcomm AptX HD for hi-res audio streaming via something like Tidal. That connection sits alongside wired ones via USB-C and 3.5mm as well as wireless with SlipStream wireless.
It's well designed and comes with a high-quality finish that includes faux leather memory foam cushioned ear cups, a padded headband and an adjustable size that can be easily tweaked to fit your head.
The Virtuoso XT sports 50mm custom drivers that are capable of delivering hi-res, high-fidelity (96Khz) audio when you plug into a PC. Alternatively, you can use it wirelessly with 24bit/48kHz audio for as long as 15 hours.
A high-quality, broadcast-quality microphone rounds off a superb package. The only downside is the round earcups that might be uncomfortable for some.
The Corsair Virtuoso XT is our favourite high-res, high-fidelity gaming headset with audio that really floats our boat.
Best affordable 3.5mm headset
- 53mm stereo drivers
- 1.2m and 2.0m extension 3.5mm connection cables
- 20Hz-40kHz frequency response
- Detachable distortion-free boom mic
- Large protein leather ear cups with memory foam padding
- Also compatible with Xbox One, Mobile, Nintendo Switch, Mac and more
Fnatic's React headset is interesting proof that a good gaming headset doesn't have to cost the earth. It also shows that you can have a good set of gaming cans without all the extra bling, RGB or over-the-top features.
Highlights to this headset are the large, all-encompassing earcups that cover the entire ear and boast a premium protein leather design with memory foam cushioning. This design is not only comfortable, but blocks out a lot of external noise and prevents sound bleed too.
We were pleasantly surprised to find that, despite its price, the Fnatic React is capable of delivering a pretty impressive soundscape with a rich sound experience for the money.
The detachable microphone is also superb too. Clear, capable and convenient.
All told, the Fnatic React is the underdog but almost certainly one of the best value for money headsets money can buy. If you're looking for a headset that sports large, capable cans without all the extra fluff and a 3.5mm connection, then look no further. However, we will say that if you want perfect positional audio then you might like to look at others on this list. However, even the React can be improved with the addition of Dolby Atmos.
nuraphone + nuraphone gaming microphone
- Bluetooth aptX H3671301D and 3.5 mm connection options
- Up to 20hrs battery life, recharged in 3 hours
- Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) + Dual passive isolation
- Soft-Touch silicone material with over-ear and in-ear design
- Unique hearing profile
This is a fairly interesting bundle that takes the unique Nuraphone headphones and transforms them into a gaming headset. We enjoyed the Nuraphone design and sound when we originally reviewed them as earphones, so we were intrigued to see what this setup could bring to gaming.
If you don't know already, Nuraphones selling points are sound and design. These are unusual headphones which use both in-ear and over-ear designs to immerse you in the sound. The technology contained within these headphones also allows them to be personalised to your specific hearing. On initial setup, the app measures the way your eardrum responds to sound and adjusts audio accordingly. The result is incredibly personalised audio that you really need to witness to appreciate.
The in-ear and over-ear design is then backed up by active noise cancellation to really immerse you into what you're listening too. Plug into the nura gaming microphone and you can then take this personalised sound into the gaming world as well.
This connection uses a single 3.5mm jack, meaning you need a mixed mic/headphone jack on your PC, but the result is some really interesting gaming sounds and a decent microphone to match.
The design takes some getting used to, as you have silicone tips in your ears the whole time, but the way the audio surrounds you is undeniably excellent. You can also crank the immersion up within the app and get a much more bassy experience with a warble that's close to sticking your head near a subwoofer or next to a trundling tank (perfect for first person shooters).
This set up certainly won't be for everyone. The fit of these headphones is undoubtedly unique and we aren't entirely sold on comfort, but the sound of Nuraphone is certainly something special. If you're already a fan, then adding a mic and plugging in is an awesome way to bring that rich, personalised sound to your gaming fun as well.
Others to consider
Asus Rog Delta S
- 50mm Neodymium magnet drivers
- 20Hz to 40KHz frequency response
- Hi-Res ESS 9281 QUAD DAC
- MQA rendering technology
- 24-bit, 96KHz sample rate
- Virtual 7.1 surround sound
- Custom audio profiles via Asus ROG Armoury Crate
The Asus Rog Delta S is a hi-res headset that offers 24-bit, 96Khz audio and has an MQA Renderer meaning it can play Tidal Masters (MQA) recordings that delight the ears.
It connects via USB-C or USB-A, meaning you can use it on your PC or Android phone with ease. And the audio is fairly good doing so too.
Other highlights for this headset include a superbly comfortable design, AI-powered mic and RGB lighting. This headset pleases for music playback and delivers rich hi-res audio for gaming too.
HP Omen Blast
- 53mm drivers, 24-bit USB DAC
- Retractable microphone
- 3.5mm connection options
- Adjustable headband
The HP Omen Blast is a headset that's perfect for those with larger heads. It's got a large flexible headband and earcups to match. It also has a 24-bit USB DAC, 7.1 surround sound and drivers capable of delivering good quality audio too.
EQ settings in the software mean you can adjust sound to focus on footsteps and get the edge on the competition in FPS and Battle Royale games.
It's not the best looking or sounding headset on this list, but it's still worth considering if you're looking for something that's solidly built and easy to wear.
If you're looking for a large flexible wired headset that doesn't break the bank, this might be it.
HyperX Cloud II wireless
- Dynamic, 53mm with neodymium-magnet drivers
- 15Hz–20kHz frequency response
- Closed-back design with memory foam cushioning and faux leather earcups
- 30 hours battery life with 2.4 Ghz wireless (20-meter range)
- Detachable mic
The HyperX Cloud II is a bold looking headset with a comfortable fit and a great overall aesthetic. It's solidly built with an aluminium frame, memory foam cushioning and nice large earcups.
This headset sports large 53mm drivers making it loud enough for a great gaming session and it also makes use of HyperX's own virtual 7.1 surround sound.
We found this headset not only had a great battery life but sounded fantastic while listening to music, watching movies and more. The positional audio is great and it has a fairly decent microphone too. A great all-rounder but it lacks the audio richness and bass of other headsets on this list and the mic is a bit compressed.
Razer BlackShark V2 Pro
- 12 Hz – 28 kHz frequency response
- 50 mm Razer TriForce Titanium drivers
- THX Audio
- Breathable memory foam cushion ear cups
- Razer HyperClear Supercardioid Mic
This is a wireless version of Razer's BlackShark headset that Razer pitches as an "eSports Wireless Gaming headset". It offers an interesting design, comfortable fit and great sound thanks to large drivers and THX audio. The mic isn't as good as we'd like, but if you're a Razer fan and want a wireless headset, this is well worth considering.
Logitech G733 Lightspeed
- PRO-G 40 mm drivers, 20 Hz-20 KHz frequency response,
- 29 hours battery life
- Lightweight design
- Blue Voice tech
- DTS Headphone X 2.0 surround sound
The Logitech G733 Lightspeed is a lightweight gaming headset which comes in various different colourways but also sports some other interesting highlights that make it stand out from the crowd. It has RGB lighting that you can show off on camera if you're a streamer, a lightweight design that makes it comfortable to wear all day long and more besides. DTS headphone X 2.0 gives this headset great surround sound and it can also manage as much as 29 hours use before it needs recharging too. If you want something snazzy, give this one a look.
SteelSeries Arctis 9
- Neodymium Drivers 40 mm with 20–20000 Hz frequency response
- 20 hours of battery life
- Dual connectivity with Bluetooth
- DTS Headphone X V2
- 40-foot range
The SteelSeries Arctis 9 is essentially a more affordable version of the Arctis Pro wireless but with fewer features. Nonetheless, it's a fantastic headset with great sound, a decent microphone, good looks and more besides. The highlight of the Arctis 9 is the connection options. It'll work with PC, PS4 and PlayStation 5 as well as a multitude of other things thanks to Bluetooth connectivity. You can also use Bluetooth and wireless at the same time, playing audio from two different places. That alone is fantastic.
EPOS GSP 601
- 10–30,000 Hz frequency response
- 112dB sound pressure
- Dynamic closed back transducer
- 2.5 m PC cable / 1.5 m Console cable
The EPOS GSP 601 and GSP 602 are new models in the EPOS range, with a snazzy finish and a large, wired headset design. They're closed-back, with ergonomic leatherette earpads that block out loads of surrounding noise and let you focus on the game at hand. We prefer the GSP 670, but if you want something with stylish looks and a wired setup, then this might be the one to turn to.
Sound BlasterX G6
- Dynamic Range: 130dB
- Sampling rate: up to 32bit 384kHz
- Dolby audio, SoundBlasterX sound, Scout Mode, various equaliser modes
- Also works with Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PS4
Although not technically a gaming headset, the Sound BlasterX G6 can be considered as an alternative to buying a gaming headset if you already own a good pair of 3.5mm headphones. This snazzy looking thing is an external DAC that works not only as a USB soundcard but also as an amplifier too.
Plug it into your PC using a USB cable and you get a boosted sound for your headphones, Dolby audio and tuned Sound Blaster sound. The G6, therefore, adds virtual surround sound to any stereo headphones plugged into it, it also ups the levels too. Not only is this Digital-to-Analog converter able to produce a sampling rate of up to 32bit 384kHz it can also deliver 130dB.
We combined it with the Logitech G Pro X, which is already on this list, to see the difference it made. The volume difference alone was staggering. Then with the accompanying software (and easy access buttons) also gave us access to more sound customisation and tweaks that weren't present on the headset alone. Everything from equaliser changes to voice-altering settings for mic capture. The Sound BlasterX G6 is a great upgrade to your gear as an alternative to a purchase of a new gaming headset.
Turtle Beach Elite Atlas Aero
- 50mm Nanoclear drivers with Waves NX 3D audio technology
- Superhuman Hearing Optimized For PC
- On-the-fly sidetone adjustment
- Pro Specs Glasses Relief system
- Up to 30 hours of battery life
The Turtle Beach Elite Atlas Aero is, in our mind, one of the very best gaming headsets we've seen from the company. It has a number of features that make it fairly outstanding, not least of which is a rechargeable battery system that lasts for up to 30 hours.
Other highlights include ultra-deep, uber comfortable gel-infused memory foam cushioned ear cups that do a fantastic job of blocking out external noise without making your ears unnecessarily hot. Large drivers with Waves Nx and Maxx technologies offer an impressive 3D audio experience. While the software gives you access to a wealth of customisation options that include masses of EQ presets and custom options.
The Turtle Beach Elite Atlas Aero, unfortunately, doesn't have the same wireless range of other headsets, but it has plenty of awesome features that we love. The glasses relief system allows you to tighten up the ear cups and create a channel for your glasses so you don't get any unnecessary pressure on your face while you game.
A detachable microphone and the ability to use this headset with other devices via a 3.5mm cable make this a capable and delightful device to own.
HyperX Cloud Orbit S
- 100 mm Audeze planar magnetic drivers
- Waves Nx fully immersive 3D audio
- Closed-back earcup design
- 10Hz–50,000Hz frequency response
- USB-C and 3.5mm connection options
- Uni-directional Electret condenser microphone
The Cloud Orbit S is essentially a more affordable version of the Audeze Mobius, that comes with most of the same features but no Bluetooth.
The HyperX Cloud Orbit S is undeniably an expensive bit of kit, but with large capable drivers, interesting 3D audio technology and a versatile design it's also highly appealing.
This is a comfortable, great looking headset that delivers really rich convincing audio whatever you're doing. It's smashing for gaming and much more besides.