Look for a headset with a spare battery so you’ll never be cut off mid-game again (The Independent)
In competitive multiplayer games, you need every advantage you can get, and while having the best wireless gaming headset won’t make up for a total lack of skill, it can significantly up your performance.
A solid soundstage or even full-on virtual surround sound means you’ll be able to hear your enemies’s footsteps around you, preventing you from being caught unawares, while a noise-suppressing microphone will ensure your teammates hear your instructions (or bragging, we’re not judging) all the more clearly.
Then of course, there are other factors to consider: comfort is absolutely key, because you don’t want to be constantly adjusting your headset during play, and equally you don’t want your ears sore for hours afterwards. Battery life is also essential, because there’s nothing worse than your headset conking out mid-match.
You also need to be aware of what systems you want to connect: while most headsets will work on PC, Switch (docked – so not the Switch Lite) and PS5 or PS4 out of the box via dongle, the Xbox Series and One consoles have their own proprietary wireless connection which needs special support – or alternatively a cable from the headset to the gamepad, which mildly cuts into the wireless label.
Finally, of course, there’s price. While you can buy a wireless gaming headset for under £50, we’d caution against spending so little if you want something that both sounds good and is built to last. As a rule of thumb, look to spend somewhere between £80 and £300, with more money generally translating to a better experience – albeit with diminishing returns the higher you go.
We tested a number of wireless gaming headsets on console and PC, putting them through their paces in single- and multiplayer games. We paid special attention to Hunt: Showdown: a game where communication and listening to every environmental detail is the key to success. Here are our favourites.
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Razer blackshark V2 pro
Thanks to Razer’s offering, you don’t have to spend £300+ on a wireless gaming headset to get excellent in-game sound. Aimed at esports players, the headset offers superb directional audio and a superbly clear microphone ensuring your team communication is completely unimpeded.
It comes with impressive built-in noise cancellation leaving you to concentrate on the in-game audio and its memory foam ear cushions are gentle on delicate ears. While it’s plug and play with both PS4/5 and Nintendo Switch (docked), the headphones really come to life on PC with THX spatial audio where virtual surround gives you a good idea of where your enemies are lurking in supported games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Doom Eternal.
There’s not too many THX supported games, and the feature isn’t present on console, but the audio quality is still good and the comfort is there, so this remains an excellent mid-range headset for those who play multiplayer on PC and PS4.
Logitech pro x lightspeed wireless PC gaming headset
Probably the best looking wireless gaming headset in our list with its coiled cable retro charm, the Logitech pro X lightspeed does not disappoint with superb sound quality both for music and gaming. On PC, the headset offers a number of presets that really make the audio pop no matter what you’re listening to, and the microphone is simply the best around, rivalling dedicated stand-alone mics for clarity to our ears.
It is a little on the heavy side, and it’s perhaps a little too wireless for its own good: there’s no 3.5mm jack, and because the headset uses Logitech’s own “lightspeed technology”, it requires a USB dongle. That means that despite its excellent audio quality and removable mic, you can’t use it as a standalone headset for your phone, which is a pity. For that reason, the headset a nose behind the Razer blackShark V2 pro above but for gamers who want superb audio and mic clarity on PC, PS4/5 and the (docked) Switch, these are well priced, even at close to £200.
SteelSeries arctis pro wireless gaming headset
This headset is pricey, but we think it’s justifiable – just as long as you’re a PS4/5 or PC gamer. With its premium high-resolution speakers, it covers frequency ranges from 10 to 40,000Hz, offering incredible sound for lossless music and any games that have uncompressed hi-res audio.
As well as sounding great and feeling comfortable for extended wear, the base station makes adjusting settings a doddle, whether you’re enabling virtual 7.1 surround sound, fiddling with equaliser settings or adjusting chat/game volumes. The best feature though, has to be that it comes with a spare battery that charges in the base station, meaning you won’t ever be caught without a charged headset again.
The only thing that lets it slightly down for us is the retractable microphone. Though it pops back into the left ear cup when not in use, it still leaves a protruding plastic blob, making it less aesthetically pleasing if you want a headset to listen to music when out in public. But that’s nitpicking – if you have the money, then it’s hard not to love this gem.
Astro A50 wireless 7.1 gaming headset & base station
If money is no object, then the Astro A50 is a good alternative to SteelSeries’ flagship arctis pro (£279, amazon.co.uk). At almost £300, it’s more expensive than both the Nintendo Switch and Xbox Series S consoles alone, but it does offer superb sound quality, comfort for days and a charging dock that lets you switch between PC and PS4 input (an adapter for use with PS5 is available, and there’s a version that jumps between PC and Xbox too.)
The charging dock offers optical audio in and out, if your setup warrants it, and it also includes Dolby virtual surround sound on PC, making picking out the locations of enemies in multiplayer that bit easier in supported titles. It’s beautifully designed, with a microphone that tucks out the way when not in use, and magnetic ear cups that can be subbed out for something with noise isolation, if you want to give Astro an extra £40.
It has its drawbacks, however. The price, obviously, is too much for some, and the look is very angular and “gamey”. Plus there are better options for blocking out ambient noise if you play in a particularly noisy environment. All the same, it remains a headset that’s hard to beat if you’re serious about your gaming and don’t mind putting your money where your mouth is.
Asus ROG strix go 2.4 GHz wireless gaming headset
This headset is an appealing addition to the list based chiefly on its flexibility. Not only does it have a built-in microphone as back up if you can’t be bothered to connect the boom mic, but it connects via USB-C (with an included USB-A dongle). That means you can use it with PC, Mac, PS4/5 and, unusually, Nintendo Switch in handheld mode. To complete the console hat-trick, you can also use it with Xbox machines – though it does break the wireless spell somewhat by needing a cable from headset to pad.
It’s lightweight and comfortable, and although sound quality and virtual surround isn’t up there with the most expensive headsets on the list, it certainly holds its own and the flexibility it offers makes it a strong contender for those looking for one headset for a multitude of consoles. With the mic removed and a wire, it even makes a decent set of headphones for your phone, thanks to its subtle, “non-gamey” design.
HyperX cloud II pro gaming headset
HyperX’s headset is certainly eye catching, with red metal decals holding the cups in place. Fortunately, it backs up the good looks with a light comfort and sound that is brilliant for both music and gaming.
There’s a lot to love about this headset, from its truly phenomenal battery life (you’ll get 30 hours of gameplay off a single charge) to a red ring light at the end of the boom mic which lights up when the mic is silenced (no accidental muting here). But, like the Logitech ProX wireless (£189.99, Argos.co.uk) it lacks a 3.5mm headphone jack, meaning it’s a no-go for Xbox players and while its minimalist controls on the cups are welcome, a lack of chat/audio mixing button makes calibration a bit of a faff in the heat of battle. Still, for just £90 it’s an excellent pick.
Turtle Beach stealth 600 gen 2
Turtle Beach’s second generation of stealth 600 wireless headphones aren’t going to win any beauty contests with their heavy use of thick black plastic that’s vaguely reminiscent of Playmobil, but this is a classic example of why it’s dangerous to judge a book by its cover. For a £90 set of cans, this set delivers seriously impressive sound and its virtual surround is equally formidable too.
They are pretty rigid, which means there are more comfortable headsets out there (though this is far from uncomfortable), and this lack of flexibility extends to the microphone – a stubby plastic arm that flips back into the body of the headset when not in use. But it’s perfectly usable, and with 15 hours of battery, this headset has got the stamina to last extended console gaming sessions too.
Corsair HS70 bluetooth stereo carbon gaming headset
Ok, so technically this set isn’t completely wireless. But we’ve included it here because its Bluetooth feature enables you to connect and chat to people mid-game while still being able to listen to your in-game sound affects via a wire. Pretty cool right?
Nintendo Switch users will find this twofer really handy – especially where chat during games like Mario Kart, Splatoon 2 and Super Smash Bros is kept off console in an official Nintendo app. It’ll also be useful for people who want to keep their chat to the Discord app, or busy people who need the freedom to take calls during a game without disrupting any of the fun. We think the price is just about right, as it offers clear mic performance and sound quality to rival headsets that are a whole lot more expensive.
Razer kaira for Xbox
You may have noticed that a lot of these wireless gaming headsets cite PS4/5 compatibility, but not Xbox. That’s because of Microsoft’s proprietary Xbox wireless protocol, which is present on both the Xbox One and Xbox Series S/X. It also comes with certain PCs and can be added to any PC with the £20 Xbox Wireless adapter.
If you have both a PC and Xbox (a sensible combination thanks to the generosity of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate) then the Razer Kaira pro is a cracking little headset that offers comfortable wear, decent sound and a crisp, clear microphone that belies its relatively modest price tag. A pro version with added Bluetooth is available for £50 more, but if you’re an Xbox gamer with a wireless adapter on PC, this will do you just fine.
Roccat Elo 7.1 air wireless surround sound PC headset
For those that play on both PS5 and PC (no 3.5mm jack, so Xboxers are out of luck), and don’t want to spend the Earth, this headset ticks a lot of boxes. It offers solid sound quality, a comfortable fit with leatherette ear cups and a very impressive 24 hours of battery life. Even the Roccat logo and text on each ear cup light up with RGB lighting when you’re playing – which feels a bit pointless when you can’t actually see it, but it’s a nice extra all the same. That being said, the build quality doesn’t feel up there with some of the high-end headsets featured in this list and noise isolation is weak compared to others, but you can’t complain when it comes in at under £100.
The verdict: Gaming headsets
While it’s hard to objectively compare wireless gaming headsets ranging from £90 to £300, ultimately our pick is the Razer blackshark V2 pro, which gives the right balance between price, overall quality and flexibility. It’s narrowly a better option than the Logitech pro X lightspeed wireless headset thanks to its 3.5mm jack providing more options for those with multiple uses in mind – especially those that want to game on PC and multiple consoles (albeit via wire for the Xbox).
Now that you’ve got the best headset, why not invest in one of these gaming keyboards too – perfect for precision and reacting in the heat of the moment
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