You don’t always need to pay a premium price for a good gaming headset. Even budget headphones can be packed with features suitable for your needs. You want to be on the lookout for good sound quality and great comfort, especially if you can game for hours every day. If you play multiplayer games, a good microphone can be very important to communicate with friends and teammates online. Any good pair of gaming headphones should also accurately localize objects like footsteps in the stereo image.
We’ve tested over 590 headphones, and below are our top picks for the best gaming headsets under $100 to buy. For more options, check out our recommendations for the best gaming headsets, the best PS4 headsets, and the best gaming headsets under $50. If you want to upgrade your whole setup, see our recommendations for the best gaming mice and the best gaming keyboards.
The ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air Wireless is the best wireless gaming headset under $100. These comfortable headphones use a wireless dongle, making them compatible with PCs, PS4, and PS5 consoles. This connection also ensures very low audio latency, so you don't have to worry about being out of sync with your teammates while gaming online.
Although they look a little bulky, they have customizable RGB lighting on the logos found on each earcup. Their boomy sound profile can help emphasize sound effects in your gameplay without completely overwhelming dialogue or soundtrack audio. If you prefer a different sound, their companion software offers a graphic EQ and presets as well as mic adjustment features. Their boom mic delivers a good overall performance, while their 16-hour battery life should last through a long gaming marathon.
Unfortunately, they aren't compatible with Xbox One consoles at all. They're also prone to inconsistent bass and treble delivery, and you may especially notice a drop in bass if you have thick hair or glasses. That said, these headphones offer quite a few customizable features, a great continuous battery life, and low latency, making them a suitable choice for wireless gaming.
If you're looking for a gaming headset under $100 that supports Xbox Wireless, consider the Xbox Wireless Headset instead. While their sound profile isn't as well-balanced out-of-the-box, and their microphone doesn't perform as well in noisy settings compared to the ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air Wireless, they're specifically designed for Xbox One and Xbox Series S|X consoles. This ensures low audio latency via Xbox Wireless technology. These comfortable, well-built headphones have a very bass-heavy sound profile out-of-the-box, so you feel the thump and rumble in action-packed scenes. If you prefer a less boomy sound, you can use the graphic EQ and presets in the Xbox Accessories app to customize their sound. Their boom microphone has an impressive recording quality, but it can struggle to separate your voice from ambient noise around you, so it's better suited for gaming in a quiet place. They also last for over 19 hours off of a single charge, which is amazing.
If you mostly game on a PC, PS4, or PS5 console and want headphones with a more neutral sound profile out-of-the-box, check out the ROCCAT. However, if you're an Xbox user, consider the Xbox instead.
The HyperX Cloud Alpha is the best headset under $100 with a wired design that we've tested. These headphones have a 1/8" TRRS connection, so you can easily plug them into your PC, PlayStation, or Xbox controller with full audio and microphone compatibility. This design also ensures a low latency gaming experience, and you won't have to worry about battery life either.
These headphones have a comfortable and well-padded fit, so you can wear them for long gaming marathons without too much of an issue. They have a fairly neutral and balanced sound profile, so dialogue sounds accurate and clear, while a small bump in bass adds extra boom to your mixes, which can help bring out sound effects as you game. Their detachable boom mic offers a very good overall performance, so your teammates hear you clearly, even if you're talking in a noisy environment.
Unfortunately, like most gaming headphones, they're prone to inconsistencies in audio delivery, and you may especially experience a drop in bass if you have thick hair or glasses. They're also not compatible with HyperX software, so they don't have any sound customization features like an EQ to help you adjust their sound. However, if you like using wired headphones when you game, these headphones have a straightforward design that's well-built and comfortable.
If you're looking for a pair of wired gaming headphones with more sound customization features, consider the SteelSeries Arctis 5 2019 Edition instead. While they aren't as comfortable or as well-built as the HyperX Cloud Alpha, these headphones offer a graphic EQ and presets in the SteelSeries Engine software to help you adjust their sound to your liking. Out-of-the-box, they have a pretty neutral sound profile, but with a little extra emphasis in the bass range that helps you feel the deep thumps and rumbles in action-packed games. You can plug them directly into your PC, PS4, or Xbox One controller for full audio and microphone compatibility. Their boom mic isn't detachable, but it has a good recording quality, so your voice is clear to your teammates on the other end of the line, even if you're gaming in a noisy place.
If you want more comfortable, better-built wired gaming headphones, check out the HyperX, but if you prefer lots of sound customization features, consider the SteelSeries instead.
The Logitech G433 Gaming Headset is the best gaming headset under $100 with excellent versatility that we've tested. These comfortable, lightweight gaming headphones have a removable boom mic and a simple design, making them fairly easy to pass off as casual headphones. They also have a well-balanced sound profile that's well-suited for lots of audio content, from music to video games.
Thanks to their Logitech G HUB software, you can customize their sound to your liking using the graphic EQ or presets. Their boom microphone does an excellent job of recording voices that sound clear and full-bodied, even in noisy environments like gaming tournaments. If you don't want to use the boom mic when you're on the go, they also come with a 1/8" TRRS cable with an in-line mic. Although we don't currently test for it, they come with a Dolby 7.1 virtual surround feature.
Unfortunately, if you're using them while on your commute or at the office, they do a poor job of reducing ambient noise like the rumble of bus engines or background chatter around you. They also leak a lot of sound, so your coworkers can hear your audio. Still, if you're looking for gaming headphones that you can use in more casual settings, they're a versatile choice.
If you're looking for wireless gaming headphones that you can use with your smartphone, then check out the SteelSeries Arctis 3 2019 Edition Wireless. Unlike the Logitech G433 Gaming Headset, the SteelSeries lack companion software and customization features like an EQ or presets. However, they support Bluetooth, so you can use them wirelessly with other devices. These headphones deliver over 42 hours of continuous playback time, so you don't need to worry about recharging them throughout your day. Their boom mic also does an excellent job of recording your voice, even in very noisy environments. That said, while they have a comfortable fit, their ski-band headband design makes them prone to inconsistent bass and treble delivery, so you may need to take time to adjust their fit each time you use them to get a more consistent sound.
Try the Logitech if you like to customize your headphones. However, if you prioritize Bluetooth support for more casual use, look at the SteelSeries instead.
Jun 02, 2021: Checked the text for accuracy and product availability. There have been no changes in our recommendations.
Apr 06, 2021: Replaced the Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Gen 2 Wireless as 'Xbox Wireless Alternative' since the Xbox Wireless Headset has a better mic performance and more sound customization features. Replaced the HyperX Cloud 2/Cloud II with the HyperX Cloud Alpha as they're better-built with a more neutral sound. Removed the Turtle Beach Elite Atlas, the Logitech G Pro Gaming Headset, and the LucidSound LS31 Wireless from Notable Mentions as they now retail for more than $100. Added the HyperX Cloud 2/Cloud II, the Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Gen 2 Wireless, the Corsair HS60 HAPTIC Stereo Gaming Headset, and the Corsair HS70 Wireless to Notable Mentions.
Feb 05, 2021: Replaced the Logitech G533 Wireless Gaming Headset with the ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air Wireless and moved the Logitech to Notable Mentions. Removed the Corsair HS50 and HS50 as they are no longer available.
Dec 08, 2020: Slight changes to the text for accuracy and clarity; no change in recommendations.
Oct 09, 2020: Article overhaul; structural changes to help you find better headphones for your needs.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best gaming headsets under $100 for most people. We factor in the price (cheaper headphones win over pricier ones if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (no headphones that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).
If you would like to choose for yourself, here is the list of all our reviews for gaming headsets under $100. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There are no perfect headphones. Personal taste, preference, and listening habits will matter more in your selection, especially if you do not care about having a microphone or wireless features.