If you’re looking for an affordable gaming headset, HyperX’s Cloud Stinger Core could be the one
As far as an affordable gaming headset goes, you’re going to be impressed by HyperX’s Wireless Cloud Stinger Core.
From its sleek design to the wonderful audio fidelity it delivers, you might wonder if its £75 price tag is, in fact, too low for what you’re getting.
The comfort and freedom of wireless gaming offered by the Cloud Stinger Core at this price make it the perfect starter headset if you’re worried about shelling over £100 for one that might disappoint.
It’s incredibly easy to set up on PC and PS4 (and it can even work with the PS5) simply by plugging in a USB stick and making sure the headset is charged.
In terms of performance, it delivers an excellent connection for a wireless headset, never cutting out or having any audio issues you’d get from a bad connection or a faulty wire.
I put the headset through its paces with a few games of Apex Legends and I was suitably impressed with the results, but the comfort was overall lacking.
Audio and microphone performance
Immediately I noticed an audible difference in sound quality between it and my currently-used and beat-up Turtle Beach headset, allowing me to listen to my friend’s voices clearly while also hearing a higher quality game audio.
No, I didn’t get that win (obviously) but I could hear every bullet I fired miss my enemy as theirs collided perfectly with my face – what a joy it was to hear clearly when and where I was being assailed from.
The different in microphone quality was the most jarring change for me, however. Using the PS4 capture feature, I recorded a section of gameplay using the Wireless Cloud Stinger and compared it to my current Turtle Beach Recons.
To my surprise, the microphone on my Turtle Beaches was far superior, delivering a clear voice even when shouting.
The Cloud Stinger’s microphone, on the other hand, came off tinny and a bit muffled; even after playing with the audio settings in the PS4 party menu.
Your voice is clear and audible enough, but if you’re playing online in a frantic game with friends, and things get hectic, the microphone frequently has issues and can distort your voice.
I will caveat this by saying that even though the microphone could be better, you’re certainly getting a lot of out of the wireless capabilities and the audio quality.
It is important to note that the connection between my PC and PlayStation 4 was never once interrupted, giving clear audio at all times.
Comfort and look
Overall, the headset does feel quite rigid and the headband, despite having steel sliders, doesn’t feel all too durable.
The earpads themselves are large and they are well-cushioned but there are some comfort issues due to the chunky plastic headband, which means you’ll be adjusting the position a great deal.
Considering how this is a budget option from HyperX, don’t expect your ears to be nestled perfectly in this headset. You will feel that the earcups, while initially comfortable, will ultimately become uncomfortable, especially when trying to adjust the headset for a genuinely comfortable fit which you’ll never quite be able to find.
While it isn’t going to be a totally snug fit, you won’t notice it slipping or shifting about if you’re moving your head around. It manages to stay put and it is also pleasantly light to wear, never feeling like you’re bearing an incredible weight.
The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless doesn’t give you many options when it comes to customising your experience.
Under the left earcup, you’ll find the volume rocker, the power button and the USB-C port for charging.
The microphone features a swivel-to-mute system, which lets you have freedom over the placement of the microphone, but no matter where you put it, the headset just looks plain odd due to its simple design.
Speaking of the design, the white colour scheme does a lot to make them look more expensive and flashy than they are, which is either a plus or negative depending on your personal taste.
In terms of how it looks while you’re wearing it, there’s a lot to be desired to the point where you might not want to wear it in the company of friends if you’re particularly conscious of these things.
Obviously, no-one is wearing a gaming headset as a fashion accessory, but it would be nice to see them be a little less bulky and a bit more stylish.
Charging the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core is only possible via a USB cable which you will get in the box. No wall plugs here, unfortunately, and the cable isn’t very accommodating in its length if you want to wear it and charge at the same time.
As any bespectacled gamer will tell you, finding the right headset which doesn’t ultimately make your glasses feel like they’re digging into your skull is a seemingly endless journey.
I’m sorry to say that this headset doesn’t mesh well with my glasses, despite their smaller frame.
This throws comfort out of the window, especially when your options are to either not wear glasses or to position them awkwardly at an angle where they don’t hurt too much – it turns into a big production when it should be as simple as having space to accommodate glasses.
Alas, the woes of wearing glasses and a headset are an eternal struggle for comfort.
This is by no means a bad headset and in fact, it will suit many needs perfectly. Your mileage from this headset will all come down to personal taste and what you’re specifically wanting to use it for.
For us, this headset isn’t the best for using to talk with your friends online and would be far greater for a single-player experience.
Looking solely at the headsets wireless connectivity and the sheer quality of the sound it delivers, this is an excellent choice at a great price.
It lets itself down with a bulky design, uncomfortable earcups and the poor microphone quality, but for a starter wireless headset, you can’t go wrong here.
As an added bonus, you can use this headset with your PC gaming needs as well, just beware some issues getting your voice to come through on Discord – which, to be honest, could just be because of how temperamental Discord can be.
HyperX Cloud Gaming wireless headset is available for £74.99, buy it here.