So you’re looking for a PC gaming headset but don´t want to shell out hundreds of dollars. Then you’ve come to the right place!
You’re probably considering a range of factors in order to decide on the perfect headset for you. In an ideal world you want something with good sound quality that also offers maximum comfort and perhaps even looks easy on the eyes. It may seem like it’s a lot to ask for but it’s not the impossible task you may think!
Whether you’re simply looking to chat with friends while playing your favourite FPS or keen to reduce the noise level of your late night gaming sessions, there are a range of budget headsets out there that offer a high level of quality without breaking the bank. These headsets all offer greater immersion that can enhance your gaming experience while leaving you with some cash to spare.
All of the following headsets come in at under $80, you can usually get them quite a bit cheaper when on sale, and have received some great feedback from fellow gamers. Just remember that sound can be subjective. What sounds great to one person may sound different to another so it’s always worth exploring the various settings. Without further ado, let’s take a look at 5 great budget PC gaming headset options for under $80.
|Device Name||Driver Unit||Frequency||Weight||Mic sensitivity|
|HyperX Cloud Gaming Headset||53mm||15Hz - 25kHz||350g||39dB ± 3dB|
|SENTEY SYMPH GS-4531||40mm||12Hz - 25kHz||308g||38dB ± 3dB|
|Razer Kraken USB||32mm||20Hz - 20kHz||250g||40dB ± 4dB|
|Earforce X12||50mm||20Hz - 20kHz||233g||12dB|
|Logitech G430 7.1||40mm||20Hz - 20kHz||255g||40dB|
Hyper X Cloud Gaming Headset
If you’re a gamer that’s looking for a headset that’s both lightweight and comfortable then the Hyper X Cloud Gaming Headset may well be for you. The most expensive headset of this article, it´s tagline ‘game without pain’ is fully understandable. The memory foam ear cushions and the leather padded cups combine with a super soft padded headband to deliver comfort in abundance. Pressure on the head is kept to a bare minimum – yet the headset still remains in place.
This headset doesn’t just feel good, it looks great too. From the plush packaging (which includes all of the cables and accessories you could possibly want, including a spare set of ear cup pads) to the logo embroidered on the headband, this headset just looks cool. The long, braided cable is a nice touch too and reduces worry of wear and tear. These headphones are made to be used and the whole build just feels very solid thanks to its sturdy aluminium frame. Despite this, it’s still surprisingly light which is yet another advantage.
One particularly interesting feature of the Hyper X Cloud is the detachable microphone which may prove useful if you already have a preferred desktop microphone. While not the best, the microphone has very reasonable output quality and is perfectly good enough for gaming and streaming. As for sound quality, the audio is solid for the price and the headset comes with an inline control for easy adjustment. Meanwhile the noise cancellation won’t block out all background sound but just enough so that it is unlikely to distract. It’s a comfortable headset that’s definitely worth the price.
|Compatibility||PC, PS4, Xbox One (Adapter required)|
|Weight||350g / 12.3oz|
|Cable Length||1 meter (plus 2 meter extension)|
Sentey SYMPH GS-4531
Sentey have a number of gaming headsets that are popular among gamers due to their reputation for providing high quality at a very competitive price. The Sentey SYMPH GS-4531 Gaming Headset offers just this. The over the ear headphones come with a durable cable which extends to about 2 meters and is fully manageable with Velcro straps. The inline volume control is within comfortable distance of the headset, allowing quick and easy access to adjust everything from the in-game volume to the microphone. There are even LED lights that cover the earpieces and control, which makes this a great headset for late-night gaming.
The built-in microphone allows for a clear and crisp output and simply pulls down from the left earpiece. It’s both easy to access and easy to conceal, however it is made of solid plastic and thus lacks some flexibility. While it can be moved vertically it’s simply not possible to pull it closer, so it may be worth taking a look at the customizable settings if you’re not entirely happy with the setup. While nothing to write home about, the sound itself may well surprise those who are expecting a serious compromise in quality due to the low price tag. It may not be the headset of choice for audiophiles but it’s still surprisingly high quality and nicely complimented by rich bass sounds.
Ears everywhere will appreciate the generous soft padding on the Sentey Arrow. The inner cushioning envelops the ear, while the padding that runs along the headband gently cushions the head, providing adequate comfort for longer gaming sessions. The flexibility of the headset itself means that it’s easily adjustable depending on head size so that it’s great for adults and children alike. All in all, it is a great value headset that should tick every box for the average gamer.
|Weight||308g / 10.8oz|
|Cable Length||3 meters|
|Connection||USB 2.0 Gold Plated|
Razer Kraken USB
We’re all told this as youngsters: first impressions are everything. In the case of the Razer Kraken USB, it certainly makes quite a first impression. Upon opening the box you’ll notice that there’s little plastic stopping you from just picking up the headset. The whole packaging is beautifully designed and the product just sits snugly inside – it’s a small thing that some will undoubtedly appreciate.
Quite simply, the Razer Kraken USB Headset offers superb sound quality for its price – enough to impress the most enthusiastic of audiophiles. The immersive surround sound adds a whole new level to gaming and is the standout feature of the Razer Kraken. Although this headset doesn’t have noise cancellation per se, background noise will be minimal thanks to the generously plush closed-cushioning that the ear cups provide.
The microphone is of a very good standard for the budget price and along with the audio generates a clear and crisp sound. The microphone has a featured called ‘ambient noise reduction’ which basically means that any noise in the background shouldn’t be picked up by the person or people you’re talking to. It’s another small and simple thing but it goes a long way to making this a headset to be appreciated. Perhaps the main disadvantage is that although adjustable, the microphone is not removable or concealable.
It’s a nice lightweight headset as far as comfort is concerned. There’s not a lot of padding around the headband yet it’s still relatively comfortable to wear. The ear cups are nice and big and should sit around the ears well. However there is very little possibility for adjustment. Furthermore, the padding is very firm and not in the same leagues as other headsets that sport memory foam. Regardless, it’s a great headset for gamers looking for excellent sound without having to pay hundreds of dollars. It’s also worth noting that this headset is compatible with the PlayStation 4 for those who like to dabble in console gaming.
|Weight||250g / 8.8oz|
|Cable Length||2 meters|
|Connection||Gold plated USB|
The Earforce X12 from Turtle Beach offers quality digital stereo sound making it ideal for both games and movies. Its high-quality, flexible microphone will have no problem picking up your voice even if it’s the faintest of whispers. However, one disadvantage is that the microphone is so sensitive that it can on occasion pick up background noise. Also, the swivel on the microphone is not as easily moved as it should be which may cause annoyance. An added bonus for some will be the option of the microphone monitor that allows you to hear back what you’re saying.
As for the sound, it’s excellent and probably the Earforce X12’s main feature thanks to its large 50mm speakers. The easily accessible inline control is simple to use and even comes with adjustable bass boost. One obvious advantage of this is that it transforms gaming into a much more immersive experience, picking up sounds such as footsteps from behind that you’d never otherwise hear. Not only is the sound quality very strong but the headset is comfortable too. The ear cups are large and deep cushioned, allowing total comfort for long gaming sessions even when wearing glasses, however they’re not the most flexible. Meanwhile, external noise is significantly reduced when wearing this headset but it’s not 100% noise cancelling.
In general the build is very strong with the headband being particularly sturdy. The cable length is extremely long measuring at almost 5 meters. It does come with a Velcro-tie so it’s quite possible to keep it tidy should you wish. Overall, it’s a very solid headset with great sound for a highly competitive price.
|Compatibility||PC, Xbox 360|
|Weight||233g / 6.4oz|
|Cable Length||4.87 meters|
Logitech G430 7.1
Without doubt one of the key features of the Logitech G430 headset is that they boast Dolby 7.1 surround sound. But that’s not all there is to this great value product. A lightweight headset, the Logitech G430 comes with soft sport cloth ear cups that allow breathability so the head doesn’t get hot. They’re very much built for comfort with their 90 degree swivel which offers a much more personalised fit than many other headsets on the market. The cushioning is soft and deep which surprisingly isn’t always the case with all gaming headsets. It is worth noting that although comfortable for a while, they can become somewhat uncomfortable over long gaming sessions, particularly for those who wear glasses.
The foldable microphone rotates up and out of the way in the event of it not being needed. It’s also nice to see that it features noise cancelling, keeping unnecessary background noise to a bare minimum. However one issue with this is that it can on occasion cut out certain parts of your speech if it doesn´t reach a certain level. The inline volume control is very easy to use as well as access with intuitive controls for quick adjustments. Essentially both the audio input and output are good.
The angular design of this particular headset with its jet-black matte finish is particularly striking. The chrome logo on the ear-pads and the blue trim looks quite cool. The braided cable that runs from the headset is durable and measures at just over 2 meters. This is a good all-round headset that should please most gamers on a budget.
|Weight||255g / 8.9oz|
|Cable Length||2.3 meters|
|Connection||Corded USB or 3.5mm jack|