Best Gaming Headset

UPDATED NOVEMBER 2018​

For playing games on your console and having fun with friends, you need the best gaming headset. You can use our shopping guide to find the ultimate gaming headset.  

BEST GAMING
HEADSET 2018

BENGOO G9000

BOTTOM LINE

Compatible with personal computers and most devices, this headset is suitable for all types of gamers. A noise-canceling microphone lets you get in on the action without annoying others.

PROS

With bright lights and a sleek design, this headset will pull you right into the action of your game. You can easily adjust the volume and use the built-in microphone too.

CONS

This set is a little too large for some heads and ears. You might find that the headset isn’t strong enough for daily use.

BOTTOM LINE

With a large driver and a good frequency response, this headset provides good audio sound and blocks out some background noises. The internal battery lasts for up to 10 hours.

PROS

One button on this headset allows you to access the microphone and mute the sound. That microphone does a good job of blocking some surrounding noises.

CONS

Some of the features on this headset will not work with all devices. A few shoppers had issues with the sound quality when recording or playing music.

BOTTOM LINE

Designed for use on a soundstage, this headset provides professional sound quality. The steel frame adjusts, while the padded ears help you stay comfortable for hours.

PROS

The Plug N Play design makes it easy to plug in the headset and start playing. You can feel comfortable when playing games and using this headset in other ways.

CONS

Some customers complained that the headset produced some white noise. Others wished that it had a tighter fit on their heads.

BOTTOM LINE

This dedicated headset provides better sound quality than almost any other set. Designed for use with PlayStation devices, it has a large frequency range too.

PROS

You can use this headset while it’s plugged in or as a wireless set. It works with both Bluetooth and wireless connections and has a good range.

CONS

The microphone doesn’t cancel as many noises as you might expect. Its cable is a little too short for use in some rooms or areas too.

Turtle Beach Ear Force Recon Xbox Gaming Headset

BOTTOM LINE

The sensitive microphone on this headset will pick up everything you say and has a pause feature to turn it off. Its 3.5mm jack lets you plug it into almost any modern generation console.

PROS

Designed for Xbox consoles and compatible with other devices, this headset has large speakers in each ear. The cord has in-line controls for fast and easy customizing too.

CONS

You may need an adapter to use this headset with older consoles. Some thought that the headset was too small and fit too tightly on their heads.

Shopping Guide for the Best Gaming Headset

The newest generation of video game consoles let you do more than ever before. Not only can you play your favorite games, but you can listen to tunes and watch shows and films too. The best gaming headset for 2018 lets you do anything you want without disrupting others in your home. We searched the web and consulted with experts to find the ultimate gaming headsets for the year. You’ll find models that you can use with any console and with your computer too. We created a product matrix of the best gaming headsets and also wrote detailed reviews to help you learn more about those sets.

Some of the features you might consider when choosing a new headset include whether you prefer a corded or a cordless model and how much a simple pair will cost. When it comes to cordless models, you’ll also want to consider the battery life and the type of batteries you need. Our headset reviews make it easy to see which pair will work with the games you love to play. We recommend that you look at those reviews at the same time that you look at all the info we collected to make an informed decision on which headset is right for you.

Shopping Guide for the Best Gaming Headset

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Selection Criteria

By the time you buy a new console and purchase a few games, you might spend $500 or more. Many gamers don’t want to spend even more money on accessories like headsets. That is why we looked at prices when picking the best pairs. While some of the headsets might be a little too expensive for your budget, you can find a good price for less than you thought you might spend. Price is not the only factor we considered though. We also looked at ease of use, customer reviews and durability. All of the headsets on our list will keep up with the most exciting and demanding games that you play.

To decide on the five best gaming headsets, we sought help from both real gamers and experts. We looked at dozens of websites to see what tech experts consider the best headsets and then checked with gamers who use those headsets. Our team also looked at Amazon reviews to make sure that players just like you loved those top models. Any negative info we found appears in the product matrix that you see above. To find the best gaming headset for any console or computer, read through our shopping guide.

Selection Criteria

How We Picked the Top Gaming Headsets

  • Websites and experts used: 30+
  • Products considered: 20+
  • Reviews read: 50+

Why Should You Buy a Gaming Headset?

  • Create an immersive experience: The biggest reason to invest in a good gaming headset is that it lets you create an immersive experience. You can actually hear those tiny sounds that you might otherwise ignore in a game. The sounds produced will pull you right into any fantasy or battle game.
  • Play anytime: If you live with anyone else, including kids or a romantic partner, you probably find yourself playing games less because you don’t really enjoy playing them with the sound turned down low. You can’t crank up the volume though because it might wake or disrupt your family. With a gaming headset, you can listen to the game as loud as you want.
  • Connect with your team: Online games often let you compete as part of a team with players from all around the world. Though you can send messages back and forth, you can also talk to your team in real time. You can actually work out a strategy without the other teams hearing a word.
  • Listen and watch: A good gaming headset can also help you when it comes to listening and watching. No matter what apps you have on your console, you can stream videos through those apps and listen to music as the audio comes through your headset.

The Best Streaming Apps for Your Console

Why Should You Buy a Gaming Headset
  • Netflix: Netflix is one of the best streaming apps because it has such a large catalog of films and television shows. You can access both newer and older content, including new hit originals produced by the company itself.
  • Hulu: If you love watching television shows and films, you need to use Hulu. This streaming app lets you watch TV shows the day after they originally aired. The only downside is that Hulu does not have access to shows from all networks.
  • The CW Stream: Anyone who watches shows on The CW should download the network's own app. While it does require that you sit through commercials, you have access to a large network or current and former shows and specials.
  • HBO Go: You can now sign up for HBO Go without paying for the channel itself. HBO Go provides you with access to hit films airing on the channel and with some of its top TV shows.
  • CBS All Access: CBS announced that its latest “Star Trek” series would only air on its streaming app in the United States. That app also lets you watch shows produced by the network over the years and current shows such as the entire run of “Survivor.”

Our choice for the best gaming headset around is the G9000 from BENGOO. Designed to work across all platforms, you can use this model with your desktop or laptop and then plug it right into your game console. Not only is it compatible with XBOX and PS4 consoles, but you can purchase a separate adapter and use it with older Microsoft devices. The G9000 features a subwoofer that creates a surround sound experience to pull you right into your favorite games. You might even forget that there are other people and objects around you because of the realistic gameplay offered.

Best Gaming Headset Review BENGOO G9000
BENGOO G9000

Though some shoppers thought this set was a little too large, it fits adult heads nicely. Padded cups keep the ear pads from rubbing uncomfortably against your skin, while the headband on top adjusts to fit any size head. It also has a design that reduces the sound that reaches your ear to prevent hearing loss. The G9000 also reduces some of the sweat that might otherwise fall down your face. Attached to the end of the headset is a braided wire that won’t break down as you play. This wire lets you quickly adjust the volume and gives you access to the built-in noise-canceling microphone.

Do You Prefer Wired or Wireless Headsets?

It’s really important that you decide whether you need a wired headset or a wireless model. When you take a look at the top five headsets we found, you might notice that most are wired. That is because they have higher reviews and better ratings. When many gamers think of headsets, they actually think of wired products that they can plug into any console. You can usually use them with a PC or a laptop too. We’ll go over some of the top reasons to invest in one or the other to help you decide whether you can deal with a few wires or cords.

Wired Headsets

Wired headsets usually feature some type of plug and play design. Instead of finding an app or program that you download and looking for an internet connection, you simply plug the cord into an available port. This lets you instantly use the headset. Wired models are usually much more affordable and will work as consoles change. Even if you have an old console with a jack that isn’t compatible with your port, you can often purchase a separate adapter. With a wired model, you’ll get better sound quality too. The main issue with wired headsets is that the cable limits your movements.

Wireless Headsets

Wireless headsets are more expensive and require more set up time than wireless models do. Many gamers also find that they do not deliver very good sound quality either. Anything from the apps that you use on your computer to other electronics can produce interference that gets in the way of your signal. You can use both Bluetooth and wireless internet connections to sync your headset to your console though. Another benefit to a wireless model is that it lets you go anywhere. You can toss clothes in the washer, do some dishes, talk to a loved one and even move between floors without losing your connection.

When to Invest in a Wireless Headset for Gaming

  • You have pets that love to chew on cables and cords
  • You have consoles in different rooms and want to use one headset for all of them
  • You like sitting more than three feet away from your computer or television screen
  • You love the idea of using a headset while moving through your home
  • You have newer consoles with different ports
Do You Prefer Wired or Wireless Headsets - WITHOUT TEXT

Which Design is Right for You?

Gaming headsets come in two different designs: open air and closed air. An open-air design is much more open and features tiny holes that increase the amount of air flowing around your head and face. If you aren’t sure what design a headset has, you can simply take a look at the cups that sit on your ears. Ear cups that have a series of tiny holes across the surface are part of an open-air design. Some prefer this type of design because it keeps them from overheating and stops sweat from accumulating on their necks and heads. The downside to an open design is that it allows more noise to escape from the headset. If you use the headset around others, they can hear everything you listen to and do.

An alternative that some prefer is a closed design. With a closed design, the cups are entirely closed and do not have any holes. Many also prefer this type of design when playing games too. Even if there is someone sitting right next to you, he or she won’t hear your game. Closed designs are also great for homes where multiple people use and wear headsets at the same time. A closed design headset is the best option for gaming.

Where Can You Use a Closed Headset?

  • On the bus
  • While at the library
  • When others are nearby as you play games
  • Anytime other people might interrupt your game
  • When riding in a car
Which Design is Right for You

Comfort is Key

There is nothing quite like bringing home a new game on a day when you have absolutely nothing to do. You can kick back and relax while playing for hours. If you choose the wrong headset though, you might feel so uncomfortable that you either take it off to play or stop playing completely. While all games have different ideas of what comfort means, there are a few things to look for when buying a headset that will fit you perfectly.

  • Adjustable band: We highly recommend looking for a headset that has an adjustable band. This refers to the band that wraps around your head and holds the cups on your ears. Not only should it keep the headset from sliding down your head, but this band should also remain in place as you move. You’ll want to avoid those that slide around or poke/rub against your heard.
  • Padded ear cups: You should really look for models that have padded ear cups too. Though memory foam is the best type of padding, any type of foam will work. The padding keeps the speakers from sitting directly on your ears and keeps any parts from poking you.
  • Size: It’s equally important that you take a look at the size of the headset too. We saw many different reviews from shoppers who thought some headsets were too large or too small. You need to choose a headset in a size that fits your head.

How to Wear a Gaming Headset for the First Time

  • Adjust the band as far as it will go
  • Place the cups directly on each ear and adjust each cup until you feel comfortable
  • Hold one cup against your ear as you slowly adjust the band to make it fit your head
  • Move in place to make sure that the headset won't slide
Comfort is Key

No matter what games you play or how you play those games, you probably used Logitech products before. Logitech has such a strong reputation in the gaming industry today that we knew we wanted to include at least one headset from the company on our list. The G930 is our choice because this headset is suitable for those who use Skype and other apps as well as those who love gaming. It has a larger than average driver that increases its frequency response. This set will pick up both tiny background noises and louder sounds around you as you play to make you feel like you’re right in the middle of the action.

Best Gaming Headset Review Logitech G930 Wireless Gaming Headset
Logitech G930 Wireless Gaming Headset

Those looking for a cordless headset will like this model too because it allows them to play anywhere in the room where they have a computer or console. With surround sound and seven audio channels, the G930 also lets you experience games the way developers want you to play. The built-in microphone has a noise canceling design that helps you focus on the action without any distractions getting in your way. You can pause the microphone anytime you want too. This model will run for up to 10 full hours after you charge the battery.

Choosing a Headset Based on the Microphone

Unless you want to play games and listen to others talk without adding your own input, you really need a headset with a good microphone. There are a few things you should consider about that microphone.

  • Sound quality: The most important thing to consider is the sound quality. Do you want your crew to hear you handing out orders in the middle of a fierce game? If the sound quality is not good, you may need to scream into the microphone to make your team hear you.
  • Mute feature: Most headsets come with a microphone that has a mute feature, but the way this feature works can differ between models. The best mute feature is one that lets you hit a button and stop others from hearing you. This lets you talk to a loved one and do anything you need to do before resuming the action. Some microphones require that you turn it away from your face and rotate the microphone to mute it.
  • Sensitivity: You’ll also want to look at the sensitivity of the microphone. The more sensitive it is, the more others will hear. As you play online, your friends can hear what other people say and do in your home. Some gamers prefer microphones that are less sensitive.

What Range Do You Need?

Frequency response and frequency range are two of the top terms that you need to understand before buying a headset. The term frequency range tells you the exact range of sounds that the headset can hear, while frequency response refers to the sounds that the headset can pick up and send to your ears. Those two things are important when buying a gaming headset and one that you’ll use in other applications. A common complaint that some have about streaming apps is about the noise levels. When you watch a film, you might notice that the volume rises during action scenes and then drops back down during talking scenes. If you want to avoid changing the volume from scene to scene, you need a headset with a good frequency range and response. This allows the headset to pick up every noise and sound in the show and transmit it to your ears at the same time.

A strong frequency range and response also comes in handy when playing games. You no longer need to crank up the volume just to hear your teammates or the characters on screen. The headset will help you hear both lower and higher tones with ease.

Expert Tip:

If you have questions or concerns about the range a headset has, you can actually test it online. You’ll watch a short video and monitor the sounds that you hear, which gives you both the range and the response of the headset.

What Range Do You Need

Compatible Headsets

If you looked at customer reviews before checking out our shopping guide, you might come across some who bought the wrong headset for those devices. It’s important that you read the product description completely to make sure that it is compatible with your console. Most computers today will only work with a headset that has a USB end. Those designed for consoles typically have a 3.5mm jack, which is the standard size that most companies use. As long as the headset has a jack that is compatible with your port, you can use it with your device. Apple computers may require different types of headsets though because the company uses proprietary software and hardware.

You’ll also find some products designed for specific consoles. Microsoft makes headsets designed for both the Xbox One and the Xbox One S. If you buy the wrong type of headset, you will find that it won’t work with your older or newer generation console. Sony makes some headsets designed for its PlayStation consoles too. We did not include any of those headsets on our list though because most have poor reviews. Many customers found that aftermarket manufacturers offer better headsets with more features than console manufacturers do.

WARNING:

You should be very careful when buying any headset that features a number of lights and other features that you don’t need. Companies market those headsets to shoppers looking for the newest and coolest gadgets. You can easily spend more than you wanted on a headset that doesn’t meet all your needs.

Compatible Headsets

Other gaming headsets are a pain because you need to go through so many different steps to set them up, but this model is easy for anyone to use. HyperX added its Plug N Play design to this model. As long as you can plug the cord on the headset into a USB jack, you can start playing games in seconds. This set comes with a standard 3.5mm jack that makes it compatible with most video game consoles, including the PS4 and the Xbox One. Many customers also like the professional design of this set, which would look right at home on a Hollywood sound stage.

Best Gaming Headset Review HyperX Cloud Revolver S Gaming Headset
HyperX Cloud Revolver S Gaming Headset

The steel frame on this headset will last for years. It adjusts easily to fit your head or around your neck. HyperX added a premium material to the outside of each ear cup that looks like leather and feels soft against your ears. Underneath that material is a layer of memory foam that will actually mold to the shape and size of your ears too. We also like the microphone button located right on the attached cord. You can press one button to increase and decrease the volume and press another to mute the microphone in the middle of a game.

Do You Need Surround Sound?

Television and film enthusiasts often set up surround sound systems in their homes. These systems consist of subwoofers and speakers as well as other accessories. When you watch a movie or show, those speakers adjust to change the level and amount of audio that comes through. This creates a more immersive experience that is similar to the way you might watch a movie in a theater. Though it might seem impossible to enjoy a surround sound experience through a simple headset, many companies today actually offer this feature.

The way it works is actually quite simple. Instead of using just one driver and speaker in each ear, the headset consists of multiple drivers and speakers on each ear. Each of those drivers has a design that allows it to respond to a different frequency range. This means that some drivers will pick up lower sounds, while other drivers will pick up higher sounds and pitches. The drivers then send those tones to the speakers, which transmit the sounds to your ears.

Many players who like action and shooting games prefer surround sound. It allows them to identify enemies and targets in all directions on a virtual map. You can track down those enemies with your ears instead of running in circles across that map.

Common Issues with Surround Sound

  • It adds to the total cost of your headset
  • You may have a hard time hearing all the sounds coming through the speakers
  • The drivers may not pick up all the audio cues you need
  • It doesn't always work the way it should
  • Most users find that it doesn't do much when watching videos or listening to music
Do You Need Surround Sound

Headset Weight

Unless you spent a few hours working your way through a new game before with a heavy headset on, you might not realize how dangerous this can be. The more a headset weighs, the more weight it will place on your head. If you ever stood up and took a headset off after a marathon gaming session before and felt pain in your back and neck, you used a headset that was too heavy. Some of the more common signs that a headset is too heavy for you include:

  • An intense feeling of pressure on the top of your neck
  • Feeling as if you cannot hold your head straight up
  • Pain that radiates from your head and neck to other parts of your body
  • Head/neck/back/shoulder pain that worsens as you use the headset

A good headset should really only weigh a few ounces. Some manufacturers add bells and whistles such as bright lights that come on and a microphone that extends out from the headset. A wireless headset can feel too heavy also because of the battery inside. You need to look at the weight of the set, especially if you frequently enjoy marathon sessions. A lighter weight model will cause you less pain and discomfort.

Signs You Need to Take a Break from Gaming

  • You played so long that you forgot to eat or drink
  • You find yourself ignoring your bodily functions to keep playing
  • You forgot about important events and appointments
  • You experience mild to intense pain anywhere along your back and neck
  • You lose track of time in the middle of a session
Headset Weight - WITHOUT TEXT

Noise Canceling Technology

Have you ever been caught up in the middle of a game and found yourself distracted because your spouse or roommate had a loud phone conversation in another room? With a headset that has a noise canceling design, you can concentrate entirely on your game without those distractions getting in the middle of your playing. No matter what happens around you, you can focus on just what you see on your screen.

Noise canceling technology can actually refer to either an active or passive form of technology. You can think about passive noise-canceling headsets in the same way you would the ear muffs you wore as a child. Earmuffs use multiple layers of materials to keep your ears warm, but those materials also work together to muffle some of the noises around you. These headsets will do the same thing.

Active noise canceling headsets use some of the same materials, which do a good job of blocking out any of the sounds near you. These headsets also feature a technology that creates new sound waves. When someone talks behind you, the headset will create sound waves that match those sounds. It then sends the waves to block those sounds and let you hear only the noises coming through the speakers.

What Can Noise Canceling Technology Block Out?

  • Any loud music playing
  • Television shows or films that others watch near you
  • Any games that others in your home play
  • The sounds of people laughing and talking
  • Some of the noises that enter your home from the streets outside
Noise Canceling Technology

If you have a PS4 or any other PlayStation console, this is the ultimate gaming headset for you. Capable of working with both wireless and Bluetooth connections, it has a good range that lets you stand and sit as far away from your console as you need. With the included cord, you can actually charge the headset as you play. A few customers did wish that the cord was a little longer though. As it only measures three-feet-long, it requires that you sit close to your console. It uses a certified audio system too that produces clearer and more powerful sounds.

Best Gaming Headset Review SteelSeries Arctis PRO GameDAC Gaming Headset
SteelSeries Arctis PRO + GameDAC Gaming Headset

A built-in OLED screen makes it easy to customize this headset and select the range and other features that you need. Its expansive frequency range ensures that you pick up the smallest sounds in any game or piece of music. While this set is quite expensive, most find that they love the features offered. This headset has ports and jacks that let you plug in other devices to take phone calls and listen to music while still chatting with players during online games. You can use this headset via the 3.5mm jack or with an optical or USB port. It’s compatible with both PlayStation devices and most computers.

Over-Ear vs. In-Ear Headsets

When you want to block out the world around you and listen to music, you can wear an in-ear headset. Some refer to these as earbuds. Depending on the type of phone or tablet that you have, you might even have a pair that came with that device. Designed to fit inside your ear, these headsets often come with a set of covers in different sizes. You can pick the right size based on which one feels the best in your ears. A few companies actually make in-ear headsets for gamers that have a built-in microphone, though most sets lack this feature.

All the headsets for gamers that made our list have an over-ear design. These headsets feature padded ear cups attached to a band. The cups have a larger design that allows each one to fit over your ear and form a type of seal. This seal both blocks some of the sounds of your game and stops noises outside from reaching your ears. You’ll also find some on-ear headsets with cups that sit on rather than over your ears. An on-ear design might fit more comfortably but typically will not do as much to block noises. Most of these headsets come with a built-in microphone.

Over-Ear vs. In-Ear Headsets - WITHOUT TEXT

Problems with In-Ear Headsets

  • Most lack any type of microphone
  • They typically do not offer the sound quality that you want
  • You can often hear noises around you
  • The fit isn't always comfortable
  • People near you can hear your games

Is the Headset Durable Enough for You?

No matter how cool and confident you feel on a daily basis, you might not feel the same way when it comes to a new game or one you played dozens of times before. When you get frustrated, you might feel tempted to throw your controller but instead, reach for the closest thing to you. Many games will sheepishly admit that they broke some of their old headsets. After the big boss kills you for the 10th time or your team causes you to lose yet another online match, you might reach right up and throw your headset at the wall. Even if you think that you would never do something like that, we highly recommend that you look for a durable headset.

Durability is important because it ensures that the headset will remain in good condition when you toss it on the couch after a game. A good way to see if the set is durable is with a look at the band. The best bands will attach to the ear cups. Some of the cheaper and less durable models use basic screws that can come out when you take the headset on or off. You’ll also want to avoid those with a plastic band in favor of a headset with a more durable metal band.

Tips for Staying Calm When Playing Games

  • Take a deep breath and slowly count to 10
  • Get up and take a short walk around your house
  • Watch a funny video that will make you laugh
  • Talk things through with another in-game player
  • Switch to a different game until you feel calmer
Is the Headset Durable Enough for You

Wireless Headsets and Batteries

Though many gamers prefer wired headsets, you might decide that you want a wireless model. The two most important things to consider when choosing a wireless headset is how long the battery lasts and how long it takes to charge the battery. Most models come with a plug and play feature that lets you plug the headset right into your console. You can keep playing and chatting with your teammates as the battery charges. Some models require that you put the battery on a separate charger though, which will prevent you from using it until the battery charges.

Once you take the headset out of the packaging, you’ll need to charge the battery before you can use it. Depending on the model, it can take as long as 10 hours or more to fully charge. When it comes to recharging that battery, the process may take as long as six hours. The amount of time that the battery lasts will really depend on how often you use the microphone and other features. You might get lucky and find a headset that will last for six to 10 hours at a time. If you leave the battery in the headset without using it, it can last for a few days or more.

Expert Tip:

We recommend investing in a second rechargeable battery for your headset. You can leave one plugged in and charged while using the other.

Wireless Headsets and Batteries

Turtle Beach was one of the first companies to make aftermarket accessories for modern video game consoles. Its Ear Force Recon ranks as one of the company’s highest rated headsets. Though designed for use with the Xbox One, this headset has a 3.5mm jack that makes it compatible with consoles from other companies such as PlayStation and Nintendo. Depending on the age and generation of your console though, you may need to purchase a separate adapter to use this model. It features an ultra-sensitive microphone that picks up each and every word you say when playing online. You can turn the microphone off with one touch of a button when watching videos or playing music too.

Best Gaming Headset Review Turtle Beach Ear Force Recon Xbox Gaming Headset
Turtle Beach Ear Force Recon Xbox Gaming Headset

Suitable for the longest of gaming sessions, this headset has an adjustable headband and large ear cups with padding inside. A few of the reviews we came across stated that the set was a little on the small side and fit too tightly though. The padding that Turtle Beach chose is light enough that it won’t press down on or rub against your ears. This model also features in-line control for making convenient adjustments and large speakers that amplify the sounds you hear.

How to Connect a Wireless Headset

  • Choose wireless or Bluetooth: To connect a wireless headset to your console or a computer, you must first choose between a Bluetooth connection or a wireless internet connection. Some gamers prefer using a wireless connection because Bluetooth can change over time.
  • Turn on your devices: You will need to turn on the console or computer that you want to connect to and your headset. If the battery does not have a full charge, it may not come on.
  • Sync the two: The best way to sync the two is with a search on your console. As long as you have a modern generation console, it should automatically find the headset once you establish the type of connection you want to use. You may need to press a button on the headset first though. Most headsets have a power button located right on the side of one ear cup.
  • Wait for a connection: Depending on the console you play on, it may take 60 seconds or more for the device to connect with your headset. You should see a message on the screen when you successfully connect. Once the headset is ready to use, you will hear sounds begin coming through the cups.

Why Won't the Headset Connect?

How to Connect a Wireless Heads
  • Bluetooth: If you purchase a gaming headset that uses a different type of Bluetooth than your console uses, you cannot connect the two. You may have the option of updating the older version of Bluetooth though.
  • Internet down: You cannot connect a wireless headset with any type of device if the internet is down. There are a number of websites that let you check your internet connection. You may want to use a site that checks on the status of the console manufacturer's network too. For example, when the Xbox Live network goes down, you cannot use any online games or services on your console.
  • Update needed: You may need to update the driver on your computer or the app that connects the headset to a console. If you see any type of warning or notification of an update error, you need to download and install that update before you can continue.
  • Too far away: One of the more basic reasons why you may have a trouble connecting the two is because you're too far away from your console. We recommend standing directly in front of the console when you first use the headset. You can then keep stepping back to see how far away you can stand from the console and still use your headset.

How to Connect a Wired Headset

  • Unwind the cable: Before connecting your headset, you’ll want to unwind the cable. This lets you look for any kinks that might interfere with the signal. You can also look for any damage such as frayed wires or a loose plug.
  • Check the port: Whether connecting a headset to a console or a computer, you should check the port too. Now is your chance to look for any dust stuck to the sides or other damage. You can also check the jack or USB that plugs into the port for damage such as debris stuck to the surface or dents in the jack.
  • Plug in the jack: When using an ordinary jack, you can simply plug the jack right into the port. If you have a computer, you may need to turn the USB over to make sure it fits in that port. You can also use the arrows on the top, which show you which side faces up.
  • Adjust the headset: As soon as you plug in the headset, it should form a connection and allow music and other sounds to come through the ear cups. Once you have everything ready to go, you can adjust the band and the cups to fit your head.

Expert Tip:

If you plug in the headset and your console or computer does not detect it, you may need to do a quick search and access the port used. Your device may alert you that you need to update a program on your computer before using the headset too.

How to Connect a Wired Headset1

How to Clean and Maintain Your Gaming Headset

  • Use a dry cloth: Debris can build up on your headset and leave it looking dirty and feeling sticky to the touch. The best way to clean it is with a dry cloth. You can run the cloth right over the surface to remove much of the debris. If the cloth doesn’t remove all the debris, you can use a little rubbing alcohol on the cloth.
  • Inspect for damage: We recommend that you thoroughly inspect your headset for any signs of damage each time that you use it. You should look for any cracks or holes in the ear cups and for any dents in the band that can stop it from adjusting.
  • Vodka cleaning: If you sweat a lot as you play, you may find that the ear cups develop an odd odor. One of the best ways to eliminate that odor is with vodka. You can apply a light coating of vodka to the ear cups with a spray bottle and let it dry. The vodka should completely remove that smell.
  • Add a label: This tip is especially helpful for readers who have a number of different accessories that they use. You can wrap a sticky note around the cord and write the name of the headset on it. This helps you find the right cord in seconds when you need to charge your headset.

Other Ways to Clean Gaming Headsets

  • Wipe down any electronic parts with an anti-static cloth
  • Rub a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol or vodka across the surface
  • Vacuum the headset with a smaller vacuum designed for use on electronics
  • Use the brush attachment on your vacuum to remove debris
How to Clean and Maintain Your Gaming Headset 1

Tips for Shopping Online

No matter how many times you bought items online, you might still feel a little nervous before handing over your credit card number. With so many data breaches over the last few years, you may even decide to shop in real life. We highly recommend buying a headset from a reputable site, which is why we included links to Amazon. You can click on the product links at the top of this page to view any of the top headsets and buy one almost instantly.

While you’re on the Amazon page, you can take a look at the top reviews too. Some of the headsets that we weeded out had a large percentage of negative reviews. The Xbox One Gaming Headset, for example, had thousands of reviews, but more than 30% of those were one-star reviews. You should read through the reviews thought to make sure that they are applicable. Some customers wrote negative reviews because of shipping issues and other problems that the manufacturer had no control over.

You should also read some outside reviews and recommendations too. In our Resources and Further Reading section, you’ll find a great list of sites that provide shoppers with even more information about gaming headsets.

Expert Tip:

To see how a headset fits before you buy online, consider visiting a store in your own city and trying out that headset in person. If you love the way it looks and feels, you can then order it online.

Tips for Shopping Online

What is the Average Price for a Gaming Headset?

When new gaming consoles arrive on the market, they can easily cost $400 to $500 or more. If you buy one at the height of the craze, you might spend even more. Even if you buy or build a gaming PC, you might spend hundreds of dollars on a complete unit or the parts that you need. No one would blame you if you didn’t want to drop a bundle on a headset to use with that console or computer. You can get a great gaming headset for as little as $30 though. Wired headsets are generally more expensive than wireless headsets. A wired model may limit how you can move as you play and the type of games that you play too.

The chart below helps you easily see how much the top five gaming headsets cost before you visit Amazon to learn more. Headsets that retail for less than $100 are suitable for most gamers. If you want the best headset and one that you can use for a few years or longer, you might pay as much as $150 for a set. While we found some models that retail for $250 to $300 or more, those sets are typically best for professional gamers who want to record their playing and speaking.

Average Price for a Gaming Headset

What is the Average Price for a Gaming Headset - WITH TEXT

Frequently Asked Questions

A: You can wear most types of headsets while also wearing a pair of glasses that help you see. Many gamers will want to look for headsets designed to work with glasses though. These headsets feature a design that reduces the amount of pressure put on your frames, which will keep the weight from bending or breaking your glasses.

A: Though some people use both headphones and headsets to describe the same gadgets, they are actually a little different. Headphones are devices designed specifically to block outside sounds and send sounds from games and videos into your ears. Not all headphones come with a microphone, but all gaming headsets have a microphone. Headphones can limit how you connect and play with others.

A: Virtual reality is one of the fastest growing trends within the video game industry. Many games today love how realistic those games seem. If you want to really get into the game, you can play one while wearing a headset that closes off any surrounding noises. Some companies actually make headsets specifically designed for use with VR consoles and devices.

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