Review Insider – Wireless Gaming Headset | Best XBox 360 Gaming Headset

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Very much like the headsets featured in my article about finding the best gaming headset for the PS3, the better headsets for the Xbox 360 are the pricey ones. The simple fact is that the more money you spend, the more you’re getting out of the product.

You don’t have to fork out your life savings to get a pair of headphones that are going to enhance your gaming experience. But if you want the best of the best, you’ll have to be prepared to spend a little bit more.

Here, I’m going to review what I deem to be the 3 best Xbox 360 gaming headsets available, and narrow it down to one final winner.

Razer Chimaera 5.1

The Razer Chimaera is a wonderful bit of equipment and looks like it’s from the future. It’ll set you back around $160 at the time of writing and for a wireless headset with 5.1 surround sound, that’s not too bad.

To be used solely for the purpose of the Xbox 360, the Chimaera certainly impressed me with its aesthetics. It looks like it means business and the sound quality is something to behold. Before I talk about the sound though, I’ll mention the design briefly.

The design is nothing groundbreaking in terms of the functionality. It doesn’t have any extra features you won’t find elsewhere but it is a solid piece of kit. You can tell just by looking at the bulky frame that you won’t have any issues with flimsiness.

If anything, the headset is perhaps a bit too rigid. When it comes to fitting it, there’s not much room for flexibility and you may end up playing around with it a bit to get the right feel. It’s quite tight, but the more frequently I wore it, the less I noticed it. I’d say it’s like a new pair of shoes, in that the first time feels different but you’ll get used to it.

The earcups are thick and solid with a padded fabric cover to fit around your ears nicely. For this price, I wasn’t expecting any discomfort and beyond what I’ve already mentioned, I had no issues.

As the Chimaera 5.1 is wireless, all of the controls are on the backside of both earcups for you to play around with. All of your chat volume controls are on your left, and all of your game volume controls on the right. Along with this is a retractable mic (not detachable) that you can’t do much with.

Along with the headset is a base station for all your charging needs that looks every bit as expensive and futuristic as the headset itself.

As far as the sound goes, the Chimaera 5.1 is equipped with a simulated surround sound with two 50mm drivers. Using this with games on your Xbox 360 will provide plenty of depth from the bass and a 3D environmental sound. If you’re coming from a much cheaper headset or this is your first, you’ll definitely experience a whole new level of sound.

With some headsets using simulated sound, people have felt they’ve come up short in terms of the quality. The Chimaera 5.1 is definitely at the higher end of the scale and delivers a brilliant sound performance.

Pros:

  • Excellent sound
  • Amazing aesthetics
  • Wireless for freedom

Cons:

  • Rigid design
  • Simulated sound can be off putting
  • “Only” 5.1 surround sound at this price range

Tritton Warhead 7.1

The Tritton Warhead is another beautiful headset. They also get to boast being the only “true” wireless experience with the Xbox 360 as there’s no need  for a Bluetooth dongle for chat features.

The best thing about exclusive headsets is that Cheap Gaming Laptops Under 500 they’re catered for the console they’re designed for. With that in mind, the matte black finish to the Warhead was designed for the Xbox 360 S. However, if you have a white Xbox, it’s not exactly going to be too much of a problem having a black headset.

Like the Chimaera 5.1, this headset is built solidly. It’s a bit heavier than some of its competitors but I find it a lot more comfortable, particularly on long gaming sessions.

The earpads themselves are made of leather and are big enough to fit around your ears for extra comfort. Inside, the padding is colored orange which is the only coloring you’ll get from an otherwise subtle but sleek headset.

The headband isn’t flimsy and it isn’t too rigid. It’ll make the headphones fit snugly onto your head and there’s a rubber material for extra comfort. Personally, I’d prefer something leather but that doesn’t take anything away from the Chimaera 5.1.

The mic is flexible but feels quite strong and forceful so it doesn’t compromise on the look of the headset as a whole. At the tip of the mic is a little red LED to indicate whether you’re broadcasting or not.

All of the controls for the wireless headset are found on the back of the earcups allowing you to switch between analog, digital, and other equalizer presets. One design flaw here is that due to the location of the buttons, they’re easy to press when you’re only intending to readjust the headset.

One big plus, however, is that the headset comes with two rechargeable batteries so you can always charge one in the base station while using the other.

The most important part of the headset is the sound quality and having a 7.1 surround sound, you’d expect it to be exceptional. It is. The sound is magnificent and has a rumbling, deep bass that houses all the clarity you could ask for.

The audio is powerful and wide with three equalizer presets. The 7.1 mix really shines and provides an immersive gaming experience that is thundering and enveloping. The midrange, however, lets down the crisp sounding headset as a whole, but only if you’re a real audiophile and are being finicky.

Will it enhance your gaming experience? Absolutely. The Warhead could prove to be a real asset in some of your online multiplayer battles.

Pros:

  • “Truly” the only wireless headset
  • Insane sound quality
  • Double batteries

Cons:

  • Button design
  • Some sound clarity lacking in one area

Astro Gaming A50

Astro’s Gaming A50 wireless headset really looks like the business. The other two headsets looked professional and sleek, but the A50 looks on the next level. It looks really sharp.

It sports an all black color with a cool slate and orange finish to make this piece of kit look as expensive as it is as – just under $250 at the time of writing.

As a whole, the A50 is big and bulky but at the same time is really comfortable. Everything that comes into contact with your head is covered in a cloth material that is soft and foam-like.

The earcups are larger than average but give your ears plenty of room to breathe so that you can last long gaming sessions without even realizing they’re on your head. The headband is also very comfortable and has a lot more flexibility than the previous two headsets I’ve mentioned.

On the subject of flexibility, the microphone is extremely free to move around as well as being strong enough to stay wherever you leave it. Along with this, if you rotate it straight up then the mic locks in place and mutes which is a handy feature. As this price though, I really expected a detachable mic.
All of the important features to do with volume and chat control are within easy reach. You don’t even need to feel for external buttons for the volume; simply pushing down on either side of the earcup will increase of decrease the volume.

The mixer buttons are located on the back of the right ear cup and allow you to switch between Media, Core and Pro. The media mode is best for exactly that, with Core best for gaming with great depths of bass and immersive 3D sound. The Pro mode is designed more for competitive gaming and enhanced ambient sounds like footsteps to give you an edge.

Everything so far looks great, but how does it sound?

The A50 boasts 7.1 surround sound with the strongest 5.8GHz clarity solution to provide fantastic sound quality. It’s an audiophile’s dream.

The sound mixing is extremely high providing a wide and deep sound that helps convey the sense of space within the game you’re playing. You can get a very accurate idea of where sound is coming from, whether far away or nearby enough for you to worry about.

In terms of the bass, I think the A50s excel far beyond any I’ve experienced before. It got to the point where I thought I could even feel the rumble in my stomach that you’d get at a music concert. With all of this effort, it becomes quite a drain on battery life, however.

Although the design of the A50s look very impressive, the sound is this headset’s real strength. It can’t give you the real sense that someone is sneaking up on you, but then again no other headset can. It does come very close to perfection though in my opinion.

Pros:

  • The most impressive sound and bass I’ve experienced
  • Looks like it means business
  • Extremely comfortable

Cons:

  • Very expensive
  • Variable battery performance

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