While I’ve been using a headset for PC games for as long as I care to remember, it’s only in the last few months that I’ve started using one for console gaming. I’d always felt like it was a bit of a hassle, especially with the wired set ups of the PS3 and Xbox 360 era, but it’s far easier to go wireless these days, which finally convinced me to stop polluting my house with the sound of Destiny 2 gunfire and anime late at night.
The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Gaming Headset has a lovely sleek design with a white body, black cushioning and some blue accents. It goes very nicely with the needlessly white PS4 I own, and I’m sure it’ll match the PS5 and DualSense as well. I don’t normally get all that hot and bothered about matching colour schemes for my gaming peripherals, but when it does all work out like this, I’d be lying if I said it didn’t make me happy.
It’s not just good-looking, because it’s also incredibly comfortable. Weighing in at just 275 grams, it’s pretty easy to forget that it’s even on your head. The earpads are nice and soft and have a wonderful passive noise-cancelling effect that will ensure that it’s not just keeping you from disturbing everyone else, they’ll have a hard time disturbing you as well. That’s a pretty important thing in a headset when your house is filled with two chaotic cats and a toddler (I’m not actually ignoring her, this is just for dramatic effect).
The audio it delivers is great too. Relying on dynamic 40mm drivers, the headset delivers extraordinary clarity in each sound. You feel like everything is right next to you, and thanks to the way it blocks out external noise you don’t have to pump the volume up just to be able to hear everything that’s going on in the game or TV show you’re watching.
The unidirectional microphone ensures that you can easily be understood whenever you happen to be gaming with others, and the swivel to mute function means you can swing it up and out of the way when you’re chowing down on ice cream in the middle of a raid or being forced to interact with people in the same room as you.
As my first ever wireless headset, I can say that the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Gaming Headset was incredibly easy to set up. You just stick the USB dongle into whatever you want to use it with, turn on the headset and voila, sound is getting all up in your ears.
The other main factors are the range and battery life. It can apparently broadcast audio up to 12 meters in an open field, but since I don’t live in a field (open or otherwise), all I can say is that walking into the small kitchen that’s smushed into my lounge let me do some cooking while chatting to friends. You’ll probably be fine in your house too. The battery life is also suitably impressive for a modern wireless headset, with HyperX rating it for 17 hours. I have to admit I charged it before that point just to be safe, with a decidedly modern USB-C port for when you need or want to top up.
The only real issue I have with the headset is the lack of a 3.5mm jack. The headset is for a PC or PS4, so it’s not strictly necessary, but the lack of one does mean you can’t co-opt it for with with other gadgets or Xbox consoles that you’ve got hanging around.