The best gaming headset

Our picks for the very best sound on consoles and PC

There are more gaming headsets around than there are stars in the sky, grains of sand on a beach or vapid reality shows. On the plus side, this means that you’re pretty much guaranteed to find one that matches your budget. But how do you know what the best gaming headset is for you?

Finding a headset that not only sounds good, delivers clear audio, great soundscapes and just the right amount of bass, but also has a great mic, feels right on the head and costs less than a new console..that’s the challenge and that's where we can help.

Whether you are looking for a headset for use with PS4 or Xbox One while getting your Destiny on or, a PC headset for long stints on CS: GO, there's something here for every budget and then probably a couple to add to a wishlist or two. With virtual reality basically screaming for headsets too, it's important to have a set of headphones that'll really do your games justice. Here's our pick of the very best gaming headsets available today. 

1. Turtle Beach Elite Pro Tournament

Made for esports, this headset feels and sounds incredible

Acoustic design: Closed Back | Cable length: 5ft | Frequency response: 12Hz-22kHz | Drivers: 50mm | Driver type: NanoClear

Compatibility: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Mac, mobile

Compatible with both consoles and PC, these cans are in a league of their own when it comes to detailed sound quality and comfort.  Developed with esports players in mind, the headset itself has multiple tension options and even a nice feature where you can reduce the pressure of the ear cushions on your glasses. You might scoff now but add that to the tension settings on the headband and you've got a set of headphones that don't feel like they're crushing your skull after a few hours of play. 

The included microphone is ultra clear already but you can buy an additional noise cancelling microphone to make sure just your voice is all your teammates get. Also available is the excellent Elite Pro Tactical Audio Controller to precision control your audio experience down to a decibel. Regardless of whether you go for the add ons or not, the headset is a brilliant overall package that's clearly been crafted with long term gaming in mind. Prepare to hear sounds you didn't even know were there.  

2. Kingston HyperX Cloud

An absolute beast of a gaming headset at a brilliant price

 Acoustic design: Closed Back | Weight: 272g | Frequency response: 15Hz - 25kHz | Drivers: 53mm | 

Compatibility: PC, PS4, Mac, mobile, Xbox One (Xbox One Stereo Adapter Required, not included) 

It was no April Fool’s when storage and PC memory manufacturer, Kingston, released a gaming headset back at the start of April 2014. Two years later and it still stands the test of time. Kingston brought in the expertise of Swedish gaming experts, QPAD, to help it with its first set of headphones. And, building on the excellent QH-90 cans, Kingston tweaked the original’s slightly flat bass response just enough to make the HyperX Cloud an astoundingly good headset.

You genuinely won’t find a set of headphones that sound as good for the price of the original Clouds. Kingston created a second gen version with USB 7.1 surround support, but changed little else, which still makes the originals perfect if you just want a standard 3.5mm connection so ideal for plugging into a PS4 controller. Kingston has gone its own way with its new Revolver headset, but it’s twice the price of the stunning HyperX Cloud.

3. SteelSeries Siberia 800

 The ultimate in wireless luxury

Acoustic design: Closed Back | Weight: 318g | Frequency response: 20Hz - 20kHz | Drivers: 40mm | 

Compatibility: PC, PS4, Mac, mobile, Xbox One (via 3.5mm audio cable with Xbox One Stereo Headset Adapter, not included) 

If you're looking to invest in a monster set of luxury gaming headphones and not have the worry of pesky wires, the Siberia 800s should be top of your shopping list. These cans run through an included external transmitter and it's easy to switch between devices without any hassle. You've got multiple options when it comes to sound too. Wire up your optical cable and the 800s deliver exemplary surround sound that means you're not going to want to take your headphones off any time soon. 

We've no complaints with the stereo offering either and the bass is booming enough to plug into your mobile device for music when you've not got your head in the game. Another nice thing is the supplying of an additional lithium ion battery so no running out of sound when you need it most. The extra battery charges inside the transmitter so it's ready when you need to swap them out.  If you want a multipurpose - not to mention comfortable -  wireless headset for PC or console, this is worth the investment. 

4. Creative Sound BlasterX H5

An excellent balance of price and sound quality 

 Acoustic design: Closed Back | Weight: 260g | Frequency response: 20Hz - 20kHz | Drivers: 50mm | 

Compatibility: PC, PS4, Mac, mobile, Xbox One (via Xbox One Stereo Headset Adapter, not included) 

Sound Blaster is a brand synonymous with gaming audio history stretching back decades and the closed-back H5 headset is another great option for getting the best aural experience in-game. These headphones are a little heavier than the Kingstons, and don’t have the same level of frequency response, but the Sound BlasterX H5 cans still have a great sound to them. They're comfortable with a snug fit around the ears and will work with both PC and consoles.

Worth noting too is that the noise reduction microphone works well for in game chat and mobile but is of course removable if you don't fancy walking down the street looking like you're in charge of a fleet of spaceships. 

5. Audio Technica ATH-AG1x

Money no object luxury cans 

 Acoustic design: Closed Back | Weight: 320g | Frequency response: 15Hz - 35kHz | Drivers: 53mm    

Compatibility: PC, Mac, Mobile, PS4, Xbox One (via 3.5mm audio cable with Xbox One Stereo Headset Adapter, not included) 

Audio-Technica has been creating audiophile headphones for years, but its first gaming headset, the ATH-AG1, didn’t go down so well with gamers. Not resting on its laurels though it has recently released a revamped version of the closed-back cans, with more a more solid soundscape and incredible detail. The only downside of this great-sounding headset is the slightly odd ‘wing’ design of its headband.

Audio-Technica’s AG1x is the sort of headset which screams ‘what do you mean you don’t have a dedicated soundcard?!’ when you plug it into your motherboard. This is a premium headset which deserves serious audio hardware. It will work with PS4 and mobile via its 3.5mm jack but to give yourself the audio you deserve, you'll want a PC with a dedicated sound card to deliver all those perfect decibels straight into your brain. 

6. Roccat Renga

The ultra lightweight option 

 Acoustic design: Open Back | Weight: 210g | Frequency response: 20Hz - 20kHz | Drivers: 50mm    

Compatibility: PC, Mac, Mobile, PS4, Xbox One (via 3.5mm audio cable with Xbox One Stereo Headset Adapter, not included) 

The seriously lightweight Roccat Renga headset certainly isn’t going to crush your neck over a long gaming session, but its acoustic design might not be everyone’s cup of tea. A rarity in gaming terms the Renga headset is an open-back design - that means there’s no noise cancelling at all so sound can leak in and out making them largely unsuitable for loud environments. But open-back cans do create a much more natural soundscape without the acoustic restrictions of a closed ear-cup and these are happy working with both PCs and console. 

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