One of the most overlooked features of a gaming setup is the sound quality. While many players spend good money on gaming gear, such as keyboards, mice and monitors, they skimp on audio and sound.
However, sound design is half the experience in gaming. Furthermore, a well-made game can use sound to give players spatial awareness, giving them an advantage.
So, if you are looking for a gaming headset that will level your game, here are some things you should consider before buying.
1. Sound Quality
When choosing a gaming headset, or any headset for that matter, your top priority should always be sound quality. You don’t want to hear the sound and music of a game that sounds like it’s coming from an old tin-can radio.
So, when you choose a gaming headset, you should try listening to them first. That way, you are sure that you like the sound profile that it offers. Whether you’re choosing from premium brands like Sony, Bose, or JBL, you should try it out at Gaming Sounds, so you can guarantee your aural satisfaction.
2. Head and Ear Fit
Gamers can spend hours in front of their consoles. This means that your gaming headset should also be comfortable to wear. If it’s too tight or heavy, you may have a headache or neck strain after your gaming session. That’s why it’s important for you to test it to fit the headset you’re buying before you buy it. After all, no one wants to suffer aches and pains after an exhausting match.
You should also consider how the ear cups feel when you wear them. If they’re too tight or too hot they probably aren’t for you. Wearing an uncomfortable headset can really hinder your gaming performance, as you’ll be constantly adjusting it instead of focusing 100% on the match.
3. Connection: Wired or Wireless
Most hardcore gamers will recommend wired gaming headsets. That’s because these devices have zero latency, which is important in the split second decisions you make in gaming. For example, listening to your opponents’ moves can help you ambush them. But if your headset has poor latency, you might be caught out in the open instead.
Another disadvantage of the poor latency of older wireless standards is the confusion it can bring. You’ll see yourself firing your weapon on the screen, but you’ll only hear the shot after a second. This slight delay can make it quite awkward to play fast-paced games like FPS.
Even so, wireless headsets still have their place in gaming. If you find yourself moving around frequently, or if you want to use your headset for other purposes, like listening to music or watching movies, the wireless model may be a better option for you.
If you choose a wireless headset, check the headset’s wireless standard before purchasing. To avoid latency, check that it runs at least Bluetooth 5.0. It would be much better if it runs the latest iteration—Bluetooth 5.2.
Some models also offer optional proprietary wireless transmission. Instead of using Bluetooth technology, they use radio signals, as is the use of wireless mice. These headsets allow you to enjoy the freedom of wireless technology while allowing for almost zero latency. The only downside to this is that these devices are usually expensive.
5. Battery Life
Another problem that wireless headsets must deal with is battery life. If you’re playing for hours, your headset should have the same endurance as you. Most headsets have 20 to 30 hours of battery life, but it’s better to test it yourself to find out what you’re getting into.
In addition to battery life, you’ll also want a wireless gaming headset that gives you the option of physically connecting. So even if you have run out of juice, you can still use it for gaming. You should look for something that offers quick charging to fill it up while eating lunch or dinner.
6. Spatial Tracking
This feature follows the position of your head and adjusts the source of the sound. This goes beyond surround sound, where voices coming from your left, right or back are reflected in the headset. What it does is that it adjusts the sound source every time you move your head.
For example—if the sound comes from behind, and you turn your head to the right, the sound source will go to your right ear. It’s perfect for gamers with wrap-around screens or those using a VR headset. So if you have a system like this, you should look for a headset that offers this or something similar.
7. Boom Microphone
Another thing you shouldn’t miss with a gaming headset is its mic quality. While a pinhole microphone should be sufficient for most applications, having a boom mic instead is highly recommended. This is because you want your partner to clearly hear you when you are gaming.