With the holidays rolling in, headsets will likely be at the top of some gamers wish lists this year. Gaming headsets can be tough to pick out for gift giving, as they generally need to serve the comfort, sound and communication needs of players. Many sets that promise such features can cost upwards of $150 or more. Luckily the HyperX Cloud Core headset manages to check all of the above boxes and appeal to your budget.
Produced by Kingston, the HyperX Cloud Core headset is the third iteration in the Cloud series line. Currently priced at $70, the Cloud Core is meant to serve as a more straightforward sound solution for gaming without all the bells and whistles of its predecessors. Fortunately, the Core does not compromise on the signature comfort known to come from the Cloud series. The headband and ear cups are fully padded with memory foam. The headset itself is incredibly lightweight, allowing it to be worn for several hours at a time with no discomfort.
A single three-foot braided cable feeds from the left ear cup alongside the 3.5 mm jack for the detachable microphone. The cable is unfortunately non-replaceable and the headset comes with a six-foot PC extension wire as its only accessory. The sound from the detachable microphone is simple and clear without too many issues. Without any control boxes on the main cable however, adjusting the levels of the mic, game sound, or muting must be done through the device you’re playing on.
The sound profile is incredibly surprising for a headset at this price. When giving it a spin in Witcher 3, the trees rustled with the wind, bombs exploded with a nice bass-filled boom, and creatures could be heard closing in from a distance. The audio provided in the stereo Cloud Core is impressively clear for games. When playing music however, the headset sounded a bit thin at times. It’s passable for occasionally listening to tunes or watching videos, but game audio is really the Core’s strong suit.
There are a few caveats to the Cloud Core of course. The lack of a control box directly on the cable can make on-the-fly chat muting or sound adjustment via in-game menus a pain. The main cable may be a bit on the short side for folks with larger arm spans. While the sound profile is incredibly strong, it will likely not be enough for hardcore first-person-shooter players whom require extremely sensitive audio cues.
Overall the HyperX Cloud Core is a fantastic budget headset that will serve most gamers needs. Its comfort, style, and sound soar far above its $70 asking price. The Cloud Core headset can currently be purchased at Gamestop or Amazon.com