One of the best gaming headsets will bring your favourite games to life better than a standard set of headphones ever would. You might not think that to be the case if you can splash out on the latest set of headphones from the likes of Bose, but gaming headsets are designed a little differently to ensure you get the most out of your games. We've provided a bit of a checklist as to why down below, followed by our top picks on the market right now.
First of all, gaming headsets differ from the likes of the best wireless headphones because they're designed with video game sound design in mind, and that means they'll represent sounds a lot differently. To begin with, the best gaming headsets usually have larger drivers in the cups, which usually help to create broader sound spectrums and convey bass ranges in a more immersive way. Gaming headsets will also connect better with various devices, or be designed with a certain console in mind. Perhaps most importantly, comfort is a must in gaming headsets for those longer, late night sessions so are designed with longer wear-time in mind.
The best gaming headsets will be your best bet for experiencing the wonderful world of sound design in video games, and down below you'll find our top picks of the best gaming headsets today. If you're looking for more gaming inspiration, check out our guides to the best laptops for gaming and the best gaming chairs to further improve your set up.
The best gaming headsets in 2023
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Sony came to market with three gaming headsets in 2022, all geared at the PC market first and foremost. The Sony INZONE H7 is the middle child of the three, with the entry-level H3 and high-end H9 being the siblings on either side. The H7 sits at a bit of an odd price point since it's far closer to the H9 than an even middle, but arguably, that's for good reason.
By far the best thing about the H7 headset is that it takes the H9's best features and puts it in a more affordable package. You won't get active noise-canceling, but you will get the exact same build quality which means minimal sound bleeding. You won't get some flashy LED lighting, but you will get sidetone - a feed of your microphone audio like you would in a radio studio. Whilst wearing, our reviewers found that there's excellent comfort to be found with the H7 and that's thanks to its plush nylon cushioning. Most importantly, you'll get dual connectivity in the form of Simultaneous Bluetooth, which means you can connect to a phone at the same time as your PC or PS5. This is an excellent feature you won't find on many gaming headsets, and it's well worth paying a bit more for.
The packaging for the HyperX Cloud Alpha Wireless headset claims that this device can last up to 300 hours. Considering the best gaming headsets only usually last about 20, this feels like a stretch. Nevertheless, the HyperX Cloud Alpha Wireless lives up to that claim. Testing this headset for about a week was incredibly enlightening. After running the headset through its paces in every possible way, both with games and music, there was nothing that could make the battery even think about running out. What's more, stamina isn't all this headset has - the sound quality is up there with the very best on the market.
You might be thinking that a headset with this kind of battery life is perfect if you like to play a lot of online games. While that's certainly true, it is worth noting that the microphone for this headset is really not the best when it comes to clarity. Nonetheless, if you're a individual that forgets to charge their headset this is a great option.
Razer is as reliable a gaming hardware brand as you'll find. Its products are consistently found in "best of" lists no matter what you're looking for, and the headset market is no different. The Blackshark V2 is a cracking headset that is perfect for anyone who refuses to move on to a wireless option.
Wired headsets still have their place, and they can be really helpful for certain streaming setups and PC loadouts. One crucial thing is that they have a cable that's long enough to not inhibit movement, and the Blackshark V2 personifies that. This headset is extremely comfortable, has a long threaded cable, and has excellent passive noise cancelling that you'd be fooled for thinking was actually ANC. The only disappointment here is that at the loudest settings the sound mix can sometimes lack some clarity. Otherwise, this is one of the best gaming headsets you'll find.
Now I know what you're thinking - this doesn't exactly look like a gaming headset, and this brand is usually a market leader for studio and music headphones. However, the Beoplay Portal from B&O blends the world of its top-tier sound quality into a gaming-specific headset that bucks all the trends. There's no obvious crane-mic that's in your face, there's no outlandish design or cans that stick so far out from your head you look like a Cyberman. The Beoplay Portal is lightweight, sleek, and uses super plush materials to give you a gaming audio experience like no other.
Without a doubt, this is the best sounding headset on this list. Unfortunately, that brings about its worst trait - the extortionate price tag. But any audiophile will be more than satisfied with this headset. If you can afford these, this is a do-it-all headset that will come in handy for listening to music and podcasts too. With an impressive wireless battery life of over 30 hours, this is a really impressive headset. The only reason it isn't our number one pick is because of that price tag.
Another Razer entry, although this one is a few generations older. The Kraken line has grown arms and legs since the original stormed onto the shelves, but this is still one of the best gaming headsets money can buy, and it's often found blissfully cheap. It's supremely comfortable, especially for glasses wearers, and it's available in lots of nice colours and designs (yes, even with kitty ear attachments on top).
There's a clever bit of design work that means the microphone can retract into the left cup instead of detaching, and the mic quality is to be applauded for the money you pay. There are plenty of more feature-rich gaming headsets out there, but the original Razer Kraken has some serious staying power and is still worth buying as it continues to get cheaper. The only big downside that's worth noting is that because of the shape of the headset itself, it can be hard to get the cups to fit securely over your ears without any gaps. This means you can experience some sound bleeding both in and out of the headset. Other than that, this is a comfortable and great-sounding option that punches well above its weight.