When it comes to gamers, gear makes up a good chunk of the enjoyment we get from our games. Good visuals, great controls, a streamlined experience, topped with the amazing sound all come at a cost – but the entire thing mixed together for that time that we’re lost in our virtual universes makes up for it entirely. In the following, we’ll be looking at the best gaming headsets in 2018 and determining which are your best choices, and why.
What Is a Gaming Headset?
Gaming headsets are basically just like your regular headsets, aside from a few key features. First and foremost, most of them will feature wireless technology and will almost always include a microphone. That’s because the world of gaming has changed significantly over the years where now you get to compete or cooperate with your friends or complete strangers over the internet – competition or cooperation which needs communication. And while typing your messages in-game is still viable, there are some instances like in real-time games where downright talking to everybody else is much easier.
And then, of course, you’ve got to have quality and complete integration with preferably most if not all available gaming platforms. A huge chunk of gaming is in the music, the sounds and the sound effects they use – gaming headphones will need to relay that quality in real time just like you’d expect for good headphones to allow you to listen to your music at high quality. As far as integration goes, the huge array of available gaming platforms poses quite the challenge for gaming headsets, as some of these platforms may even rely on proprietary connectivity options, as we’ll explore in the buyer’s guide below.
Best Gaming Headsets in 2018 Buyer’s Guide
The first thing you’ll need to keep in mind when choosing your gaming headset is, of course, the platform it will be used on. Some gamers play on their PCs, others prefer consoles or even mobile gadgets like smartphones or tablets. Each of these platforms requires either slightly different connectivity options or simply is better to use with specific headsets. Like for example, you might not be bothered by a wired headset while you’re sitting on your PC – but if you’re playing on a mobile platform and don’t want to disturb others around you, you may need to consider a wireless option instead which will give you increased mobility without getting in the way.
Next up you have the type of headphones – are they the type that covers your ears or will they fit snugly in your ear? This will depend solely on your personal preference. Some may be bothered by headsets which cover their ears, while others may need them so that outside noise can be completely drowned out while you’re gaming and talking with your friends in-game. Then we have the microphone – not all headsets will feature microphones with noise reduction technology. And there’s only so much that software can aid you in that regard, so if you live in a crowded house or have pets or kids around constantly, noise-reduction microphones may be a worthwhile investment towards an overall better gaming experience. Sound frequency and driver size may also be some of the things you need to take into account if you’re super knowledgeable about these things, as both of those metrics dictate sound quality in a headset.
Last, but definitely not least is the design, the look and feel of the headphones. Depending on the materials used, these things can differ immensely from one model to the next. Some prefer smart foam which molds over your ears snugly, others may prefer a firmer feel over their ears. Of course, it’s all chalked down to personal preference – but design choices can have a huge impact on your experience as well. Nobody likes volume knobs or mute buttons being placed in hard to reach locations. So always keep an eye out for these design choices the manufacturers made, as they can negatively or positively impact your gaming experience by quite a lot.
However, without further ado – here are the best gaming headsets in 2018:
#1 ASTRO Gaming A50 Gaming Headset Xbox One / PC / MAC – White
With a futuristic look, but still a fresh, modern one, the ASTRO Gaming A50 Gaming Headset is the perfect choice for those looking to play on their PCs, Xbox One or MACs. With full unabridged compatibility with all of the aforementioned platforms, it is certainly a flexible, popular choice among hardcore gamers who are looking for not only looks but quality as well.
Featuring a Mix Amp Tx, which is a separate controller which you can use to control your headset, and a connectivity with a 0.5M micro-USB cable, and another 1-meter Xbox One Chat Cable, a 1.0M Micro-USB cable and a 1.0M TO Slink optical cable for the Mix Amp Tx, you’ve got your connectivity options covered.
The microphone is fitted with noise reduction technology so that it picks up your voice only, and ignores other sounds and background noise around you. This headset takes into account the progress made by newer gaming platforms like the Xbox One and offers everything you’d need to get it working on the console. Are you a user of PlayStation 4? No worries – there’s a model for that as well.
- Easy connectivity with new gaming consoles like PlayStation 4 and Xbox One;
- Stylish, modern design;
- Accessible price;
- Noise reduction technology on the microphone;
- Plenty of connectivity options for both the headset and the amplifier.
- Not completely wireless technology;
- Needs the amplifier which can take up extra needed space.
#2 HyperX Cloud Stinger Gaming Headset
The HyperX Cloud Stinger Gaming Headset is a perfect beginner’s headset, just so you can get a good feel of what a good gaming headset can do for you. With a simple design which will most likely please anyone, this is a wired headset which can work with your PC, Xbox One, PS4 and Wii U.
The lightweight design allows you to wear this headset for prolonged periods of time without feeling any strain on it. The ear cups rotate 90 degrees and it features 50mm directional drivers for the best audio precision possible at this price. The HyperX memory foam on the ear cups will make them even more comfortable, and there’s an adjustable steel slider which allows you to find the perfect fit for you. You can control volume on the headset ear cup which is very intuitive, and the microphone offers noise cancellation technology and swivel-to-mute technology as well, making it a very versatile gadget. Swivel-to-mute basically means you can get the microphone in an upright position to mute it, without having to press any buttons, change game settings or alt/tab out of your application to do so.
- Weighs only 11 ounces;
- 90-degree ear cup rotation;
- Place microphone upright to mute;
- Volume control on the ear cup;
- Multi-platform compatibility with no setup needed (adapters sold separately);
- Very cheap;
- Noise reduction technology incorporated in microphone.
- A viable option for newcomer gamers only;
- Parts of the headset stop working relatively shortly after purchase.
#3 Corsair Gaming VOID USB RGB Gaming Headset – Carbon
Still, in the beginner spectrum of headsets for gaming, the Corsair Gaming VOID USB RGB Gaming Headset employs a couple of nifty gimmicks to get you hooked on its design choices. For starters, this is the first item on this lists which offers multi-color lighting options for the headset. You can get nearly unlimited lighting customization to fit your specific preferences. It also intuitively integrates with the Corsair RGB keyboard if you own it.
Aside from that, this headset offers full Dolby 7.1 sound delivered over 50mm drivers. But keep in mind that this is entirely dependent on the sound card you have on your PC – if the sound card does not support Dolby 7.1, neither will the headset play that quality sound. The microfiber memory foam ear pads are highly comfortable, allowing you to forget you even have them on, which makes this headset a good fit for even the more dedicated of gamers out there.
There is a total of 3 equalizer settings which you can use depending on what the headset’s being used for at that moment. The microphone has noise reduction technology incorporated, so you can relay your messages without fearing your teammates won’t be able to hear you. LED indicators near the microphone will offer you information such as mute status, EQ settings, and battery life.
- Decently priced beginner’s headset with pro features;
- RGB lighting for unlimited personalization;
- Status notifications on microphone for ease of use;
- Noise cancellation technology;
- Comfortable memory foam wrapped with microfiber;
- Dolby 7.1 sound support.
- Still on the low-end spectrum of headsets;
#4 Cougar Immersa Gaming Headset (CGR-P40NB-300)
The Cougar Immersa Gaming Headset is again one for initiate gamers who want a feel of what a gaming headset should not only look like but feel like. To that end, these headphones feature ultra-lightweight suspended leather atop of the head which offers stability without adding to weight which you’d feel in prolonged gaming sessions. The total cable length is 2 meters, making these a perfect headphone set for your average PC gamer. They output high-quality stereo sound, but it can be greatly influenced by the quality of your PC’s soundboard.
The ear shells are omnidirectional and adaptive, meaning they’ll fit regardless of the shape of your head or your ears. The microphone is retractable and made out of a durable material which will most likely last you for a very long time. The volume controls and microphone on/off functions are located on the cord of the headset for easy access. All in all, this is a pretty basic headset which relies heavily on its design to be appealing. It has a decent sound and offers decent voice output quality, at a very affordable price.
- 100mm ear pads;
- Omni-directional adaptive ear shells;
- Retractable microphone;
- 2-meter cable with volume and on/off microphone functions placed on it;
- Ultra-lightweight design;
- Affordable price.
- Basic headset, nothing which makes it stand out;
- Not compatible with modern consoles.
#5 Sennheiser GSP 350 Surround Sound PC Gaming Headset
Moving towards the more professional headsets out there, the Sennheiser GSP 350 Surround Sound PC Gaming Headset is a wired set which offers amazing Dolby 7.1 surround sound quality. These headphones are made with PC gamers in mind, and they offer a customizable surround sound experience through the proprietary software it comes with.
As far as design goes, these headphones also use a lift-to-mute microphone technology so you can easily shut off communication when needed without having to reach for buttons and knobs somewhere else. What’s more, the microphone is equipped with noise cancellation technology so you’ll always be heard crystal-clear in-game. The volume control is conveniently placed on the ear cup, allowing you easily adjust it in even the most extreme environments.
When it comes to the sustainable long use of this headset, the memory foam does a great job of keeping the set comfortable on your head. The upper part is adjustable of course for an even tighter and comfortable fit. If you buy this headset from the manufacturer or any other authorized seller, you also get a full 2-year international warranty, which spells out that this product was indeed built to last and satisfy even the more demanding gamers out there.
- Amazing surround sound with Dolby 7.1;
- Adjustable surround sound through proprietary software;
- Memory foam on ear pads offers great comfort for prolonged use;
- Lift to mute microphone with noise cancellation technology;
- Easily accessed volume controls on ear pad;
- 2-year international warranty.
- It does not enhance the sound – you also need a high-end sound card to get full sound quality capabilities out of the headset;
- Wired set only viable for PC use.
#6 HyperX Cloud Revolver Gaming Headset for PC & PS4
Designed for a similar gaming audience like the set before this one, the HyperX Cloud Revolver Gaming Headset for PC and PS4 is indeed a slick looking pair of wired headphones with the included microphone. These headphones can put out studio-grade sound stage, but their main attraction is the HyperX memory foam which also features premium leatherette. For the gamer, this translates into prolonged use without feeling tired, incapacitated or annoyed by wearing this headset.
The durable steel frame on which the headphones is fixed makes this set a perfect one for those looking for a durable option. The 50mm drivers offers directional sound, and you can use these headphones with PCs, MACs, PS4s and even Xbox One. For the latter though, you will need a separate adaptor which is not included in this pack. These are even marketed as mobile-friendly, but you will need a device which supports the CTIA standard connector.
The microphone features noise-cancellation technology, and is completely detachable when you just want to listen to some music and don’t need to use it. Discord, Skype, Ventrilo, Mumble and RaidCall friendly, this headset has been certified by TeamSpeak as being a good quality one with no echoes or background noises getting in the way of the gaming experience.
- 2-meter cord;
- Stereo plugs;
- Detachable noise-cancellation microphone;
- Durable steel frame;
- Memory foam proprietary HyperX ear cups;
- 50mm directional drivers;
- TeamSpeak certified;
- Studio-grade sound.
- Wired headphones;
- Questionable cable quality.
#7 Logitech G933 Artemis Spectrum Wireless 7.1 Surround Gaming Headset, Black
Sticking to the mid-entry gamer headsets, this Logitech G933 Artemis Spectrum Wireless 7.1 Surround Gaming Headset, Black is definitely something to behold. It may look big and bulky at first, but it’s amazingly comfortable and lightweight when you wear it, without compromising on build quality. Again, we see with this headset a full customizable 16.8 million color lighting. The cups are over the ear and the breathable materials allow for prolonged use even when gaming gets intense. You can remove the ear cups and wash them whenever you like, which is always a plus with gaming headsets.
Now let’s talk sound: this again sports a full Pro-G audio & 7.1 Dolby Surround Sound capability. You will need the soundboard to back that up, though. The microphone is foldaway and has noise cancellation built-in. You can either wear the headphones with a wire or use them wirelessly with an autonomy of 12 hours. There are 3 programmable G-keys which you can assign to do 3 distinct actions, from playing or skip a song, to in-game commands.
- Superb 7.1 Dolby Surround Sound or DTS (Logitech Gaming Software required for Dolby Surround);
- Wired or wireless connection of headphones;
- Foldaway noise-cancelling microphone;
- Compatible with Windows, mobile, home theater devices, Xbox One, PS4 and more;
- Ability to personalize RGB lighting on the headset with more than 16 million colors;
- 3 programmable G-keys for customizable commands.
- Often unstable wireless connection.
#8 Razer Overwatch ManO’War Tournament Edition Gaming Headset
Fans of Overwatch will be happy to know that they can now get the Razer Overwatch ManO’War Tournament Edition Gaming Headset at a very great price, considering the popularity – for good reason! – of the manufacturer. Well-known for their exceptional keyboard builds, Razer now offers this custom made for Overwatch fans headset which not only looks great but offers some neat little perks too – at a price.
The 50mm custom-tuned drivers offers great sound, and coupled with the rotatable ear cups and plush circumaural padding deliver focalized sound directly to your ear, blocking any noise from bothering you in your gaming sessions. The MEMS microphone is retractable, but keeps a flexible design which allows you to position it exactly the way you want it. The total cable length is 1.3 meters with an additional 2-meter splitter adapter.
- Great Overwatch design;
- Snug ear cups which drown outside noise;
- MEMS microphone, fully retractable;
- Volume and mute for microphone controls on cord;
- 50mm custom-tuned drivers;
- Lightweight design and rotatable ear cups for prolonged gaming sessions.
- Cheap-feeling plastic on the design.
#9 SteelSeries Arctis 3 Gaming Headset with 7.1 Surround
Taking it down a notch in terms of pricing, the SteelSeries Arctis 3 Gaming Headset with 7.1 Surround is compatible with PS4, PC, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, iOS, and Android. The design is inspired by athletic use and so it offers huge comfort for prolonged gaming sessions. The AirWeave ear cups breathe easily while you wear them and you’ll never have problems sweating because of them, even though they do drown out outside sound quite well.
The microphone boasts great output quality and offers noise cancellation as well. This headset is perfect for gamers, music listeners and movie watchers alike. They offer full SteelSeries 7.1 surround sound, but only available on PC. Stereo sound is available for all other supported platforms. The headset features its own software option which allows you to customize profiles and change audio settings easily. Volume controls are placed on the ear cups for easy access.
- Very versatile headset, compatible with most modern devices including mobile ones;
- 7.1 Surround sound for Windows 7+ PCs;
- ClearCast microphone with noise cancellation and bidirectional design;
- S1 speaker drivers for clear audio;
- Comfortable ear caps which breath, and ski goggle headband for pressure relief;
- Affordable price considering the capabilities and sound quality.
- Possible problems at times with firmware updates;
- Some users not happy with overall sound quality.
#10 Turtle Beach – Elite Pro Tournament Gaming Headset
Probably the most professional gamer-geared headsets out there, the Turtle Beach – Elite Pro Tournament Gaming Headset comes at a spicy price – but is it worth it? Well, for starters it is compatible out of the box with PS4, PC, Xbox One and mobile gaming platforms, and that’s always a plus for the ever-changing gaming trends we see today.
The ComforTec Fit System is great for making sure that you stay comfortable regardless for how long you’re planning on gaming with friends. It even takes into account whether or not you wear glasses, making this design one which is geared for all sorts of gamers right away. This headset is geared specifically for eSports gamers who need the extra quality boost they can rely on in even the most challenging environments.
The microphone offers crisp, crystal-clear and loud voice output to your teammates so you can rely that once you said something, it’s being heard loud and clear across the board. The nano clear speakers at 50mm offer great sound quality to deliver not only those amazing in-game sounds but the voice output from your teammates as well. With a frequency response of 12Hz – 22kHz and a total weight of 390 grams, this lightweight headset is definitely something to keep in mind if you’re looking to get into professional competitive gaming.
- Lightweight design with over the ear cups;
- Crips, clear output sound through microphone;
- ComforTech Fit System makes sure your gaming sessions remain comfortable and are not impeded due to the use of the headset;
- Multi-platform compatibility;
- Geared towards eSports;
- Very good price for the specs it boosts.
- Some users report short lifespan of either headphones or microphone.
So there you have it – the 10 best gaming headsets in 2018. Whether you’re an avid gamer, but like to keep to yourself at home and also listen to some music from time to time, or you’re a pro gamer who needs quality specifically for in-game use and communication with teammates at all times, you’ll be sure to find something suited for you on this list. The range in both price and quality, as well as the addressed market, is so wide that’s it’s nearly impossible not to get a decently priced, well-suited wired or wireless headset from this list. Just make sure you follow the basic outline of the buyer’s guide and take into account the pros/cons of each, along with pricing before making a decision. Good luck!