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So, you have your new Xbox. It's set up, running, and just awaiting the right set of Xbox headphones to take your audio to the next level.
That's when you realize you don't have the right pair -- or even a pair at all.
But not just any pair will do. Gabor Hodos of Audio Inspects shares, "Investing in an Xbox headset can greatly enhance your gaming experience on the console. Not only will it provide you with crystal-clear and immersive sound quality, but having this technology can also give you an advantage over your opponents by allowing for effortless communication between yourself and your teammates during online gaming."
Enough said, right?
I'm taking the work out of shopping with this list of best Xbox headphones. I talked to the experts who are users themselves to find out the very best headphones you can buy. This is what I found.
Also: The best gaming headsets
Xbox Wireless Headset specs: Type: Wired/Wireless | Compatibility: Xbox, Xbox One, Windows 10/11 devices | Dimensions: 9.2 x 9 x 4.2 inches | Weight: 1 lb
The Xbox Wireless Headset comes highly recommended by experts and users alike.
"In my opinion, the Xbox Wireless Headset stands out for both its overall value for money and its smooth interaction with Xbox gaming systems," says Shanal Aggarwal, Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) at TechAhead. "It is a fantastic option for gamers that value ease and quality due to its user-friendly design and outstanding audio performance."
There is an adjustable microphone, as well as built-in noise isolation, so background noise is reduced. Plus, there is an auto-mute feature to easily get a little privacy. The Xbox Accessories app is an incredibly useful tool to tweak settings and take advantage of all the features.
Josh Chambers, editor of How To Game says these headphones "feature high-quality audio, adjustable mic monitoring, and compatibility with Windows Sonic, Dolby Atmos, and DTS Headphone:X technologies for an immersive gaming experience."
Jones Darrin, chief editor of 10speaker.com, approves, too. "The sound was so immersive that I felt like I was inside the game world, and I could hear every footstep, gunshot, and explosion with incredible accuracy."
Plus, Chahttps://10speakers.commbers adds, "The Xbox Wireless Headset is obviously an officially licensed product, so you'll be getting the guarantee that it is fully compatible with all of the platform's functions."
You receive up to 15 hours of battery, and compatibility is fantastic with Xbox Wireless, Bluetooth, and USB-C cable connections.
In the end, Aggawal sums it up. "For devoted Xbox gamers, this headset purchase will undoubtedly produce long-term advantages."
Astro A50 specs: Type: Wireless | Compatibility: Xbox, PS5, PS4, PC, Mac | Dimensions: 7.28 x 3.48 x 7.17 inches | Weight: 1.49 lbs
The Astro A50 is for serious gamers, offering a premium experience you are sure to enjoy.
Walter Lappert, President of Triad Drones, gives it high reviews. "The A50 Headset was the talk of the town when it was released back in 2019," he explains, "and to date, this headset continues to be the first choice for gamers because of its rich audio quality, which keeps getting better with time and regular firmware updates."
It comes with a base station and is compatible with not just your Xbox One but also your Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and your PC. Enjoy low-latency communication for a spectacular audio chat with built-in Dolby Audio. Plus, there is the ability to make EQ adjustments based on your individual profile.
"The 40-millimeter drivers on the headset give you a great surround-sound experience," says Lappert, "and make the gaming atmosphere more relatable in action games like CounterStrike, Fortnite, GTA, etc."
There is the ability to also connect via your USB sound card. Playtime is generous, too, with up to 15 hours of battery life, thanks to the lithium-ion battery that is also rechargeable.
Plus, there is the added value and quality, says Shawn Hill, founder of The Grilling Dad and self-professed gamer. "Sure, it's pricier," he says, "but top-tier performance doesn't come cheap!"
Bang & Olufsen Beoplay Portal specs: Type: Wireless | Compatibility: Xbox, Xbox One | Dimensions: 8.6 x 9.1 x 2.7 inches | Weight: 0.62 lbs
The Bang & Olufsen Beoplay Portal is the set of Xbox headphones you want to buy when you want a premium experience.
"This is a luxury gaming headset that offers premium audio quality, active noise cancellation, and a stylish design," says Jones Darrin, chief editor of 10speakers.com. "If you really want status headphones, then no looking further than this."
These headphones are a lightweight, over-ear set that are easy to wear all day for comfortable gaming sessions. In addition to HDMI connectivity, there are specialized gaming functions to make things move much more efficiently. Sound is incredible, too, with active noise cancellation that comes built-in with Dolby Atmos sound and four internal mics to create exclusive B&O Own Voice technology to ensure clear communication. If your sound needs adjusting, then look no further than Beosonic Tuning, which is available via the Bang & Olufsen app.
Oliver Dale, editor at Beanstalk, a gaming publication, gives it high praise. "Overall, I thought the Beoplay Portal is a stylish and comfortable headset with excellent sound quality for music."
Hill is also a fan, declaring, "For the style-conscious gamers out there, the Bang & Olufsen Beoplay Portal is the epitome of elegance, blending top-notch comfort and unrivaled sound quality. Luxury meets gaming with this chic headset."
HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 specs: Type: Wired/Wireless | Compatibility: Xbox, Xbox One, PC | Dimensions: 10.5 x 9.7 x 3 inches | Weight: 0.63 lbs
If you do not have a lot to spend, the Kingston HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 is a fantastic Xbox headset that comes with a surprisingly low price tag.
"The Kingston HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 is an affordable wired gaming headset with stereo sound and a lightweight design," says Darrin. "So far, I [have] used these headphones for daily gaming."
With a wide frequency response, the game's little audio nuances will not go missed, and passive noise cancellation is included to provide better focus. The design also features DTS Headphone:X Spatial Audio for premium sound.
Tom Greenspan, co-founder and sleep science coach of Vs Mattress, says, "For gaming, the sound quality is clear and crisp with great bass. It has a lightweight design and is comfortable to wear over long gaming sessions."
Review: HyperX Cloud Stinger 2
At under 300 grams, these headphones are indeed a lightweight pair with soft memory foam and leatherette cups to cradle your ears. They also boast a 90-degree rotating design with a swivel mute option on the accompanying mic for ultimate convenience.
"HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 is an excellent choice for gaming, and I highly recommend it," Greenspan concludes.
SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro Wireless specs: Type: Wireless | Compatibility: Xbox, PS5, PS4, Switch, Mac | Dimensions: 7.58 x 7.37 x 3.44 inches | Weight: 2.97 lbs
If budget is not a concern, the SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro Wireless is the best Xbox headset, coming in under $350.
James Smith, co-founder of Inyouths, has been a fan since its release. He ticks off its many benefits, saying, "The steel-reinforced headband makes gaming feel light, secure, and comfortable. The battery life is also excellent; you get up to 30 hours on a single charge. It also has Bluetooth connectivity, connecting phones and other devices."
"The sound quality is truly amazing," Smith adds.
This set shines with its audio, using a Nova Pro Acoustic System for audio that is further complemented by 360° Spatial Audio. Also integrated is special sonar technology with built-in active noise cancellation. To keep your audio going longer, there are dual batteries, so you can use one while the other charges.
Brandon King, Founder of tech startup Home Security Heroes, says, "The sound effects are accentuated, and I can hear footsteps and different gameplay sounds quite well."
Review: SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro
Hill can't get enough of this set, telling me enthusiastically, "The SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro Wireless is a wireless wonder, boasting an exceptional battery life that'll let you roam free without skimping on audio. With its sleek design and customizable sound, serious gamers can't go wrong with this one."
Users agree - the Xbox Wireless Headset is the best Xbox headset you can buy. Enjoy built-in noise isolation with phenomenal Dolby Atmos audio. However, we know that it is not for everyone. This is how the best Xbox headsets compare.
Best Xbox headset
Xbox Wireless Headset
Bang-Olufsen Beoplay Portal
Kingston HyperX Cloud Stinger 2
SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro Wireless
Though similar, each best Xbox headset has special features and specifications that make it stand out from the next. These expert recommendations can help you find the best Xbox headset based on your personal needs.
Choose this best Xbox headset...
If you want...
Xbox Wireless Headset
The best overall Xbox headset. This model is a great mid-range option that is also budget-friendly.
An Xbox headset worthy of the serious gamer. You won't believe this sound.
Bang-Olufsen Beoplay Portal
The best premium Xbox headset. This headset doesn't skimp on quality or performance.
Kingston HyperX Cloud Stinger 2
The best cheap Xbox headset. These headphones won't break the bank.
SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro Wireless
To splurge. This luxury Xbox headset is pricey but offers fantastic performance.
When selecting the best Xbox headsets, I look to the users themselves to find out what kind of experience they have had using each product. I also base my search on several discerning factors, such as these.
Audio: Superior audio quality is a must when you are a gamer. Little nuances like footsteps or whispers can easily get lost when you suffer from poor sound. Instead, look for special audio technologies like Dolby Atmos that can make an enormous difference in the type of audio quality that you receive from your headset. Also, consider what kind of microphone is included so you can be sure that your dialogue is presented clearly and loudly to your audience.
Comfort: Gamers generally use their Xbox headsets for prolonged periods of time, so it is critical that your headset is comfortable to wear for hours at a time. Look for headsets that incorporate soft materials like leather and memory foam to provide a more pleasant, plush fit.
Connectivity: Many Xbox headsets offer wireless and Bluetooth connectivity, so you can ditch the wires and connect to your Xbox faster. You also want to be sure that your chosen headset will work with your console, as sometimes Xbox headsets will not work with PlayStation and vice versa.
Darrin offers his advice. "It's important to consider factors such as budget, audio quality, comfort, and compatibility with other devices when choosing a gaming headset," he says. "Reading reviews, comparing specifications, and trying out different headsets, if possible, can help make an informed decision."
There are many different companies that manufacture Xbox headsets that did not make my list. That does not mean that they make an inferior product -- they just do not come as highly recommended as some of the others on my list. When searching for the best Xbox headset, we found that these products came from companies like Bang & Olufsen, Kingston, and SteelSeries, as well as Xbox itself.
An Xbox headset promises easy compatibility with your Xbox. There may also be specific features and benefits that come with an Xbox headset that you may not find with just any other headset.
"If you are an avid Xbox gamer, investing in a headset specifically designed for the console will surely provide a more fluent and improved gaming experience," says Hodos of Audio Inspects. "For Xbox gamers seeking to enhance their gaming experience, investing in a superior headset is an absolute must."
Xbox headsets can run the gamut in price based on the features and construction involved. However, the best Xbox headsets range in cost from $40 to nearly $350, depending on the model you choose.
These are far from the only Xbox headsets out there. These sets may also be worthy of a second look.
If you want big sound, check out the Corsair HS75 XB Wireless for your best Xbox headset.
Check out ZDNET's review of this best entry-level Xbox headset!
This best Xbox headset ditches the wires and offers a wireless setup instead.
Need another type of headset? ZDNET has you covered. Be sure to check out our picks for the best gaming headsets, the best PC gaming headsets, and the best cheap gaming headsets.