They allow a user to truly tune out the outside world and tune into their first-person role-playing game that they’re more than prepared to create a second life in. So, if you’re in the market for a new gaming headset for your Xbox One, here are some options we recommend.
We researched several dozen Xbox One headsets, going over manufacturer claims and reputation as well as user reviews. This gave us a good idea of what consumers did or didn’t like about each product, as well as the properties each headset possesses. When we had narrowed our selection down to fewer than 10 products, we went right to the experts. We read reviews and thoughts from seven different well-respected gaming sites to see what they had to say about Xbox One headsets and used their opinions to narrow down our selection.
Why buy a headset for an Xbox One?
Casual and serious gamers alike can benefit tremendously from buying a headset for their Xbox One. They’re ideal for blocking out distracting outside noises, increasing your focus on your game, and providing a more immersive gaming experience. You not only reduce your risk of potential external distractions but get to enjoy your games on a whole different level. Xbox One headsets are also more versatile than regular headphones, as many come with a built-in microphone that allows you to connect and play along with friends and/or volume adjustment and mute buttons right on the headset. The overall sound quality is far superior and crisper on an Xbox One headset compared to normal headphones, too. They’re more comfortable to wear, thanks to the padded earpads, and they come in many colors and designs. Many models offer noise-canceling or built-in surround sound, or both. And even though some headsets are a bit pricey, they’re still more cost-effective than a full-blown surround sound system.
What should I look for in an Xbox One headset?
Here are a few things to think about before buying an Xbox One headset:
- Wired or Wireless: Traditionally, the go-to option for most gamers is a wireless headset. They’re mighty convenient and pretty sleek-looking, too. Wireless headsets also keep a user from feeling too attached to their remote, granting complete head and neck mobility. However, there’s still plenty to consider with their wired counterparts. Because a wired headset needs to be plugged into your Xbox, there is a constant surge of battery life that keeps your device powerful the entire time, whereas wireless options need battery swaps every few months. Wired headsets tend to be lighter and typically cost much less.
- Audio Quality: Another key aspect, arguably the most important, is finding a headset with your ideal degree of audio quality. It’s not enough to wear the first one you get your hands on. Each headset is equipped with its own unique level of both sound-enhancing and sound-canceling qualities. Top-tier headsets utilize a 5.1 or 7.1 surround sound quality, just remember: the higher the surround sound tends to mean the higher the price.
- Design Comfort: Additionally, it really wouldn’t hurt to find a headset that doesn’t hurt your ears after a few hours of gameplay. Look to headsets that offer the sides of your head a bit of comfort. Features like soft ear pads and an ergonomic head frame offer plenty of ease for your gaming ears.
Should I buy a wired or wireless Xbox One headset?
This choice comes down purely to personal preference. Both types of headsets have their own benefits and drawbacks. Some gamers prefer wired headsets because they never have to worry about their headsets dying in the middle of a game or forgetting to charge them. As long as a wired headset is plugged in, it’ll work. And wired headsets also tend to be less expensive, ideal for consumers on a budget. The downside is that wired headsets will restrict your range of motion, you risk tugging them free and losing your connection if you turn your head too quickly or sharply, and you’ll have to take them off altogether if you need to step away from your TV. And you’ll have to ensure that their attachment jack is the right size for any non-Xbox device with which you might want to use them. If your laptop doesn’t have, say, a socket that fits a 3.5-millimeter attachment jack, you’re out of luck unless you buy an adapter.
Wireless headsets allow for much greater freedom. You can walk around, get your mail, or grab a snack or drink from the kitchen without taking them off. Depending on their given range, you may even still be able to chat with your friends while doing so. Wireless Xbox One headsets also tend to come with a Bluetooth connection, so they can easily sync with Bluetooth-equipped laptops and mobile devices. Their mobility and range of motion are considerably superior to that of wired headsets. Keep in mind, however, that wireless Xbox One headsets will be more expensive as a whole, and they’ll require either consistent battery replacement or charging. Many rechargeable wireless Xbox One headsets can run for hours and hours without needing a fresh charge, but there’s some element of risk involved. If your headset dies in the middle of a gaming session because you forgot to charge it the night before, you’re stuck waiting around an hour, if not more, for them to fully recharge.
Should I buy an Xbox One headset with or without a microphone?
As with a wired vs. wireless headset, it’s up to you! These days most Xbox One headsets will come with some sort of built-in microphone, but they’re not necessary if you don’t want one. Think about your gaming habits before you make your decision. Do you tend to play a lot of multiplayer games with several friends or other Xbox users? Or do you take part in regular Discord servers or Twitch streams? If so, a headset with a microphone is going to be a beneficial choice for you. If you mostly play single-player games, you’re probably not going to require a headset that has a microphone. If you opt for a headset with a microphone, keep an eye out for models with noise-canceling microphones. These reduce the risk of picking up ambient noise from your home and may improve your voice quality during gaming.
Also keep in mind that some Xbox One headsets come with detachable or retractable microphones. These allow you to remove or tuck away the microphone when you’re gaming by yourself and reattach or use it as needed for multiplayer games or online chats. These models might be a little pricier, but they give you the best of both worlds.
How much can I expect to spend on an Xbox One headset?
The cost of a gaming headset can vary anywhere from around $25 to $500. Less expensive models tend to have fewer features or functions and generally won’t have as long of service life. Thus, serious gamers will probably want to spring for pricier models if possible. There are, however, some Xbox One headsets in the $90 to $100 range that are high-quality and fully functional if you don’t want to spend $200 or more on one gaming accessory.
Coming from a trusted gaming name with over 15 years of experience in the headset industry, this Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Gaming Headset offers users an immersive audio experience in which every in-game audio detail can be heard. While other options are content being the headset and microphone set you’re used to seeing, this pair introduces a handful of welcome updates. Its redesigned Gen 2 Flip-to-Mute microphone is seamlessly integrated into the headset itself, allowing a user to embed the mic into the left earphone when not in use. Additionally, this headset employs a Turtle Beach exclusive Superhuman Hearing sound setting, four signature audio presets for your listening convenience and up to 15 hours of battery life per charge.
Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Gen 2
A top choice from a trusted brand name, this headset offers users plenty to love.
Looking for a wallet-friendly purchase with all of the backing of a trusted name? This Turtle Beach Ear Force Recon headset is great for first-time gamers while offering plenty of professional qualities you could expect from a brand of this caliber. From its high-sensitivity microphone that allows for crystal clear chat audio to its light and comfortable design that won’t rub the sides of your head raw, this is a versatile headset that doesn’t just work with the Xbox One but with Xbox One Series X, PS4 Pro, and mobile gaming devices with a 3.5-millimeter audio jack.
For users seeking only the best audio experience in gaming, this HyperX Cloud II Gaming Headset is a leading option in surround sound quality. It’s been designed for comfort: comfort on the ears and comfort in knowing that you won’t miss a pin drop in your open-world game with this headset’s supreme 53-millimeter drivers. It features a hardware-driven 7.1 virtual surround sound system for the most precise audio pickups. The durable aluminum frame also ensures this headset is built to withstand time and a few dings along the way.
HyperX Cloud II
This headset features a 7.1 virtual surround sound system and memory foam ear cushions for the most comfortable audio experience.
Combining high-end surround sound and noise-canceling capabilities, this BENGOO Gaming Headset offers an audio-forward experience by way of blocking out everything but the noise you want to hear. This headset’s soft and breathable ear pads rest directly over the ear, hugging it so that users can expect a full-bodied sound with little room for audio escape. After all, high-clarity sound communication is key for a user when the stakes get high in a few rounds on online gameplay. For the multiplatform user who doesn’t hold any grudges, one will be pleased to know this headset is compatible with not only Xbox One but PCs, PS4s, PSP, Nintendo 3DS, most laptops and tablets, and even mobile phones.
BENGOO Stereo Pro Gaming Headset
This option offers a high-quality audio experience that's accentuated by solid noise-blocking features.
Are Xbox One headsets compatible with other gaming systems? What about laptops or gaming PCs?
This will vary depending on the brand, make, and model of the headset in question. Some models will be universally compatible or have a wide range of compatibility with many different types of gaming systems, while others will be more limited. Unless you buy an Xbox-brand headset, the odds are good that your headset will work with at least one or two other gaming systems. If you own, say, a Nintendo Switch and want to use your headset with that device, be sure to read the item listing and ensure it mentions the headset is compatible with Nintendo Switch.
The good news is that many Xbox One headsets on the market will be compatible with most major PC and computer brands, as well as Bluetooth. A Bluetooth connection ensures the headset will work with your mobile devices and laptop. Again, be sure to check the headset’s listing to ensure that it’s compatible with your specific PC or laptop brand. And some models may need a jack to connect (or you may simply prefer the wired connection to a wireless one), so make sure the jack and jack connection in question are the same size.
How do I know which Xbox One headset will be most comfortable?
All Xbox One headsets will have some sort of padding or cushioning on the earpads, but not all headsets are created equal in terms of comfort. Some have memory foam earpads or thicker padding than others, which will generally be more comfortable. Some have padded or leather headbands, which prevent metal or plastic from digging into the top of your head. Keep an eye out for ergonomically designed models as well. An adjustable headset ensures a comfier, more custom fit since they allow you to fine-tune the headset to your personally preferred tightness or looseness. Some even have specially designed earpads meant to accommodate eyeglasses, so any customers who wear glasses don’t have to worry about their frames digging in and putting strain on their heads or faces.
Are noise-canceling headsets worth it? What about surround sound?
Headsets with noise-canceling properties are almost certainly going to be a worthwhile investment, even if you don’t live in a busy or crowded environment. Noise-canceling headsets not only reduce outside ambient noise but tend to provide overall superior gaming audio. Their sound will be crisper and deeper than headsets without noise-canceling properties. And they shouldn’t have any negative impact on your hearing, either. The price tag on noise-canceling Xbox One headsets may be higher, but most consumers find this feature worth the extra cost.
Surround sound comes down more to personal preference. It’s worthwhile for anyone who wants a truly immersive gaming experience. Many competitive gamers find that the immersion of surround sound tends to give them a bit of an edge over their opponents who use regular stereo headsets. And there are some games designed specifically for surround sound. Also keep in mind that some Xbox One headsets with surround sound require a plug-in jack for the surround sound to work and that surround sound won’t be compatible with every single type of gaming device.
An Xbox One headset is a worthwhile investment for anyone who wants a more immersive or interactive gaming experience. Whether you want to feel like you’re well and truly in the world of your first-person game or you want to play online with friends without leaving the comfort of your home, an Xbox One headset will allow you to experience either—or both! No matter how you like to play your games or what skill level you’re at, an Xbox One headset will enhance your overall gaming experience.
If you didn’t see an Xbox One headset in a design or color you liked or with the features you were looking for, here are a few other models that we would also recommend: