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What to Look for in a Gaming Headset? – Ultimate Buying Guide

by  Jone -  Last updated on January 13, 2022

When you’re gaming, nothing is more important than a good headset. You want to hear everything in the game with crystal clear clarity so that you can truly become immersed and have an enjoyable experience.

A gaming headset is also great for communicating with your teammates if playing online or recording videos of yourself gaming (for YouTube or Twitch).

When looking or a gaming headset, look for:

  • Comfort & Design
  • Sensitivity
  • Impedance
  • Frequency Response
  • Sound Quality
  • Durability
  • Price Point
  • Customization

In this blog post, we will go over all the things you need to consider when buying a gaming headset. As well as our recommendations on some of the best gaming headsets available right now! Additionally, we will cover some related questions around the features of gaming headsets and headphones.

What To Look For When Buying A Gaming Headset

There are various qualities to look for in gaming headsets or headphones that will allow you to have a comfortable gaming experience. Here are some of the most important characteristics to look for in gaming headsets.

Sensitivity

Sensitivity is the most important factor in determining how well a gaming headset will work. The higher the sensitivity, the better your volume output is going to be about the input.

If you have an already loud and powerful sound system with speakers or headphones, it will block out more background noise from your environment. Such as people talking around you or other noises coming from outside of where you are playing.

In addition, for PC gamers, this also means that there will not need to be excessive amplification done on their end for maximum quality. This saves them money when buying headsets; they do not need new external devices like amps, etc.

On the other hand, you might be a console gamer who plans to play games in your living room or bedroom while others are around you. In this case, it might make sense for you to go with lower sensitivity so that any background noise does not interfere as much during gameplay.

High-end gaming headsets should have options for both high and low sensitivity levels, depending upon what type of environment it will be used in.

Impedance

This is how powerful your headphones are, and a higher impedance means better sound quality. Usual recommendations range between 16 & 32 ohms, but there isn’t too much conclusive research on the best impedance for gaming headsets just yet!

Impedance is the measure of electrical resistance. The unit is used to express the level of intensity of sounds in decibels (dB).

This is how loud your headphones can go, and a higher SPL means better sound quality. Usual recommendations range from 100 to 120 dB. But there isn’t too much conclusive research on the best sensitivity for gaming headsets just yet!

Total harmonic distortion + noise (THD+N). A low THD+N is a good thing for gamers as it ensures that you’ll hear more detail in every game you play, even at low volumes. An acceptable recommendation would be less than 0.05% THD+N which will provide great sound reproduction.

Frequency Response

Frequency response refers to the ability to hear small sounds in games like footsteps or other subtle auditory cues that can give away where an opponent might be lurking.

Most audio experts recommend choosing a headset whose frequency response ranges from 20Hz-20kHz. It will allow you to hear frequencies, making it easier to distinguish between more nuances in gaming audio.

Sound Quality

Another consideration that you need to keep in mind is sound quality. This can be affected by many things like noise isolation and distortion – both of which we’ll explain further down below!

Noise Isolation refers to how much ambient noise a headset lets into your gaming environment.

At the same time, Distortion pertains to the amount of static or white noise present when playing at extremely high volume levels. If either one is poor, it will affect the overall sound quality, so make sure to consider those factors before buying a new gaming headset!

This is perhaps the most important thing when it comes to gaming headsets. You want something with a high-quality surround sound system. This will bring your gaming experience to new levels of excitement and immersion in whatever game you’re playing.

A gaming headset is only as good as its sound quality which means you need something that offers high-quality surround sound audio no matter what game you’re playing, whether it’s FPS shooters, RPGs, or even MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) games such as Dota and League of Legends, etc.

Durability & Fit

It’s not always easy spending $100+ on a headset. But if they break within just a few months or even weeks, then what was the point? The last thing you need is your gaming headset to break mid-game, which can ruin an entire session and make things frustrating. Luckily there are some great durable gaming headsets out there!

Durability is also important when it comes to long gaming sessions.

The fit of a headset will be different for everyone as some people will want a headset that’s not so tight, while others may enjoy the feeling of pressure on their ears. Comfort matters, too, and you don’t want anything digging in or pressing against your head after hours of gaming!

While we’re on the subject, let’s talk about how gaming headsets can even improve your physical health with special features. Things like noise-canceling technology reduce distractions from outside sources (and annoying siblings), while ergonomic ear cups are designed to reduce stress/strain on your neck muscles.

In short, gamers are now able to focus more properly without any unnecessary interruptions! We’ve all had those gaming sessions where the gaming headset is so uncomfortable it feels like a knife to your ears! That’s never happened with one of our gaming headsets.

Price Point

There are many options available, so finding one that fits into your budget shouldn’t be hard at all. However, we still recommend going for something in the $100 to $200 range.

While price and budget can play an important role in selecting a gaming headset, don’t be swayed by cheap prices or what others are buying (we’ve all been guilty of that before). Falling for gimmicks such as “gaming” speakers on laptops could damage your hearing long-term, and not produce the best sound quality either if listening to music.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re playing online games or gaming on a console, you need to be aware of how long your gaming headset will last and the quality it’s built with. You don’t want headphones that will break after just a few months.

We also recommend considering what connection type you’ll require for your gaming headset too. Some come with USB connections that make them easy to use across multiple devices without any extra adapters. In contrast, others may have an analog sound card attached. This allows you to hear everything coming through your speakers.

Customization

As with all things gaming, customization is key. Having at least some minor customizations will make your headset stand out from others. Features like colors or LED lights (if it’s compatible), will also add to immersion while gaming.

Customization is not the only reason to choose a gaming headset over others, though. It also allows you to communicate with your teammates easily. Hear those footsteps running up behind you and even gauge how far away they are so that you can get ready to turn around or react appropriately.

Comfort & Design

It goes without saying when choosing any peripheral for gaming; comfort should always come first. However, even though most people might not think that design is an important factor, they really should. No matter how comfortable a headset feels, nothing beats looking good while gaming.

When gaming in an online environment, certain design features are key, especially if playing competitively against other players who may be using headsets themselves. Being able to block out outside noises is very important, as well as picking up on minute details such as which direction gunfire is coming from.

Both of these things will give you the upper hand when playing games. Still, noise cancellation isn’t just needed for gaming either because there could be distractions wherever you go. Not being able to fully focus on what you’re doing can be very frustrating.

Look for gaming headsets that offer interchangeable ear cups or come with an adjustable headband. This allows you to customize them to fit better on your head, have a soft cushiony feel, and still be durable enough to last.

Gaming Headphones Vs Gaming Headsets

Gaming headphones are traditional headphones that are used for listening to music. They, however, have features that are ideal for gaming needs. Audiophile qualities such as excellent micro-detail retrieval, precise sound stage, and immersive sound experience are suitable to double as gaming headsets.

However, the majority of audiophile headphones do not include a microphone or any mic attachment slots. For communication assistance, you’ll need an external microphone.

There are gaming headsets that come with built-in microphones. These gaming headsets and headphones combos usually have a convenient in-line remote attached to the cable. These mean you can take calls and adjust volume conveniently without bothering to reach for your audio source.

When choosing between gaming headphones or gaming headsets, keep these points in mind:

  • Gaming headphones are designed for comfort and long-term use
  • Gaming headsets usually have a better sound quality compared to gaming headphones
  • However, not all gaming headsets will be as comfortable or durable as gaming headphone counterparts
  • External microphone attachment slots make gaming headsets more versatile than gaming headphones
  • You can easily switch between listening to music and taking phone calls without having to reach for your audio source each time you want to change tasks

In contrast, with most gaming headphones, once the cable is unplugged from the device, they become useless until it’s plugged back in again. This may discourage some users who would prefer keeping their expensive audiophile cans on hand at all times while using an external mic when needed instead of relying solely upon built-in mics for gaming with friends or speaking on the phone.

Benefits of Gaming Headphones

A gaming headset is an important accessory that can make or break your gaming experience, especially if you play competitively online. And since there are so many options available on the market today, choosing one can be challenging. It can feel risky spending hundreds of dollars on something that may not even work well with the games you regularly play.

The benefits of gaming headphones include:

  • Most gaming headphones are noise-canceling. Having noise-canceling headphones will allow you to focus on the game at hand without being disturbed by outside noises such as cars driving past your house or construction taking place in front of it, for example
  • In-ear gaming headphones are more comfortable. Some gamers may not want over-ear headsets because they cause discomfort after long hours of wearing them— especially during hot summer days
  • Wireless gaming headphones are convenient. Some gamers like to roam around their home while playing without having a wire connecting them back to the gaming console or PC they are using. A wireless gaming headset will allow you this much freedom, so many people purchase this kind of headset.

The Benefits of Gaming Headsets

If you are looking for something more than regular old headphones, gaming headsets might be what you need instead.

A gaming headset will typically include both a pair of headphones and a microphone attached by a band. This is where most people get confused because these two items tend to be interchangeable when it comes to using them while playing games on your computer or console system.

The Benefits of Gaming Headsets include:

  • A headset will give you more freedom. You can move around and reduce tension on your ears unlike a pair of headphones
  • Many headsets allow for separate volume settings. Therefore the game sound can be turned up higher while your chat or music set with other players can remain lower, thus allowing the user not to have to keep turning their system’s volume all the way

Gaming headsets are far superior to traditional headphones because they have a closed-ear design that helps with sound quality and provides better noise isolation.

This allows you to play your games without any distractions from outside sounds as well as other players in your group being able to communicate easier than if using just regular headphones/earbuds tied together via an aux cord.

Wired Vs Wireless Gaming Headsets

A wireless gaming headset does everything that a wired version does but without having any physical cords or wires running between your device. The audio source input makes for less hassle overall in regards to keeping things plugged incorrectly.

Wired gaming headsets are typically less expensive than wireless models, while the latter tend to offer more features and improved sound quality. If you already own a USB-enabled computer or laptop, then your current headset may be wired without even knowing it!

However, if you’re looking for an upgrade— or maybe want something new entirely— there are several key differences between these two types of headsets that buyers should take into consideration before making their purchase:

  • Wireless headsets require batteries. Because they don’t rely on a cable to connect their audio drivers (also known as speakers) with the input port attached to your device, rechargeable batteries need to be plugged into a USB-compatible charging port when they’re running low
  • Wired headsets are more difficult and costly to manufacture than their wireless counterparts as there is an additional board required for the audio drivers (speakers), which need power from somewhere— whether that be your computer/console or another external source of electricity

For instance, wired headsets are often less expensive than their wireless counterparts. An additional board is required for the audio drivers (speakers), which need power from somewhere. They can be powered by your computer/console or another external source of electricity such as wall sockets.

Top Gaming Headsets

Gaming Headsets are becoming more and more popular with gamers as the technology behind them has improved greatly over recent years. Still, most people don’t consider when buying a gaming headset how well it will perform in different areas.

SteelSeries Arctis 7

SteelSeries Arctis 7 - Lossless Wireless Gaming Headset with DTS Headphone: X v2.0 Surround - for PC...

Buy on Amazon

The SteelSeries Arctis gaming headset offers a unique and stylish design with features not usually seen in gaming headsets. Its high-quality microphone includes noise-canceling technology, which is great for people who play online multiplayer games as you don’t want to be the person on the other end of your chat whilst playing.

The features of the SteelSeries Arctis 7 include:

  • The Lightweight 7.1 surround sound device is designed for gaming and offers rock-solid, lossless wireless audio with ultra-low latency and zero interference
  • The discord-certified clear cast microphone is widely regarded as the finest gaming mic, providing studio-grade voice clarity and background noise cancellation
  • The s1 speaker drivers, designed to generate ultra-low distortion audio, provide you with a competitive edge. Effective Range: 12m / 40ft
  • The rechargeable battery lasts for a full 24 hours, giving you enough continuous playtime even for your longest gaming sessions; Only works with PCs, Macs, PS4, Switch, and Mobile; Headphone sensitivity: 98 dB

The earpads themselves offer plenty of padding so they aren’t uncomfortable but at the same time stay nice and cool even after hours of use without losing their comfortability factor.

Logitech G733 Lightspeed Wireless Gaming Headset

Logitech G733 Lightspeed Wireless Gaming Headset with Suspension Headband, Lightsync RGB, Blue VO!CE...

Buy on Amazon

The G733 gaming headset is a wireless gaming headset for PC, Macs, PS/PS Pro, or mobile devices. It’s designed to be used with the new Logitech Lightspeed technology that offers lag and interference-free audio wirelessly at up to 40ft (12m).

The features of the Logitech G733 Lightspeed Wireless Gaming Headset include:

  • Lightspeed wireless audio transmission and complete independence with a 20-meter range. If you’re using the included rechargeable battery, you may stay playing for up to 29 hours on a single charge (battery life varies by use). Play in stereo on PlayStation 4
  • Customize the lighting on your headset across the full-color spectrum, 16.8 million colors
  • Play in color with front-facing, dual-zone Lightsync RGB illumination and select from various preprogrammed effects or design your own with G HUB software.
  • Suspension headbands with bright, reversible designs are made to provide comfort during long game sessions. Mic filters that make your voice seem richer, cleaner, and more professional. G HUB allows you to shape your sound

Hear every audio signal with crystal clarity, become engrossed in your game. PRO-G drivers are intended to minimize distortion and provide accurate, consistent, rich sound quality.

Related Questions

Here are some related questions about gaming headsets and headphones and the comparison between the two.

What Headsets Do Pro Gamers Use In 2022?

The gaming headsets that pro gamers use are:

How Can You Tell the Quality Of Headphones?

You can find free online audio tests which play you certain tones allowing you to check the headphones’ highest frequency. The highest limit if a human’s hearing is around 20 kHz; top-end headphones can reproduce frequencies up to this frequency.

Which Headphones Are Best For Your Ears?

The best headphones for your ears are:

Conclusion

A good gaming headset will be comfortable, designed to fit your head and ears well so you can comfortably wear it for hours on end. It should also have an adjustable sensitivity— but not too sensitive where the slightest sound startles you or disturbs other people around you.

The impedance of the headphones needs to match up with what your computer has set as its default setting (usually 32 ohms) for them to work correctly. You’ll want a frequency response range somewhere between 20-20kHz if possible, which covers most ranges needed by gamers who play FPS games or RPGs without having any issues with hearing certain frequencies over others.

Also Read: 10 Best x99 Gaming Motherboards

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