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The 6 Best Budget And Cheap Gaming Headsets - Spring 2023 Reviews

Best Budget and Cheap Gaming Headsets

While many assume that all gaming accessories are expensive, you can get a decent pair of gaming headphones for under $50. Many headphones in this price range can localize sound effects in gameplay well and have microphones with good recording quality, so you're heard clearly by your teammates. While they may lack features like wireless connectivity or customization options that you'd find on more expensive pairs, there are many decent options you can use with your consoles or PC that won't blow a hole in your budget.

We’ve tested over 715 pairs of headphones, and below are our recommendations for the best budget gaming headphones and the best cheap gaming headsets. Also, check out our recommendations for the best gaming headsets, the best PS4 headsets, and the best Xbox One headsets.

  1. Best Budget Gaming Headset

    The best budget gaming headset that we've tested is the Logitech G432. These wired headphones have a 1/8" TRRS cable, which allows you to connect them to most consoles via an analog connection. They also have a USB adapter that offers very low latency, so your audio and visuals stay in sync while gaming. They're decently well-built and have a comfortable and lightweight fit. Their boom microphone does a great job of ensuring that your voice sounds clear, even in moderately noisy environments, so your teammates will easily understand you during online games.

    Their sound profile lacks bass, which can make action-packed games seem less immersive, but dialogue sounds present and clear. Their companion software offers a graphic EQ and presets to help you tweak their otherwise balanced sound. They're pretty prone to inconsistent audio delivery, so you need to adjust their fit and positioning to get the same sound every time you use them. The Logitech G335 are around the same price and have a more consistent sound delivery. You might prefer them because they're more comfortable and durable, but they reproduce even less low bass and don't have an app or sound customization features.

    See our review

  2. Best Cheap Gaming Headset

    If you're looking for something more affordable but still want to stick with a wired design, consider the Turtle Beach Recon 50X/Recon 50P. Although their simple and plasticky design is a step down from the Logitech G432 and reflects their wallet-friendly price point, they're still worth considering if the price is a major factor. Some color variants fluctuate in price, but all models will work with any device with an AUX port.

    These over-ears have large ear cups that are well-padded and relatively comfortable overall. Due to their wired design, their boom microphone also delivers better overall performance than the similarly priced Logitech G435 LIGHTSPEED Wireless. Your voice sounds clear and easy to understand, even if you're gaming in a moderately noisy environment. Their sound has intense boom too, which can accentuate sound effects like explosions in gameplay. That said, the extra bass overwhelms and muddies dialogue and instruments. They don't have any sound customization features to help you adjust their sound to your liking either.

    See our review

  3. Best Budget Gaming Headphones For Mic Performance

    If you're looking for an affordable headset with a strong mic performance, look at the Astro A10. Although they're the previous generation of the Astro A10 Gen 2, these headphones are more affordable than their successor. Their boom mic offers great overall performance, so your voice sounds clear and detailed, even if you're gaming near an open window. They also have good build quality, a detachable audio cable you can easily replace if damaged, and a decently comfortable fit.

    These headphones deliver extra punch and boom to help bring out sound effects like footsteps. However, their overall sound profile is uneven, so dialogue and instruments seem pushed to the back of mixes. Unfortunately, they don't have an app and also lack features like an EQ or presets that you could use to customize their sound profile. If you don't mind buying a more expensive headset, the Gen 2 have a less bass-heavy sound profile and a more balanced mid-range, so elements like voices are more present in the mix. However, their mic performance isn't as strong, and they also don't have an app.

    See our review

  4. Best Budget Gaming Headphones With A Detachable Mic

    The best gaming headset under $50 for gaming with a detachable mic we've tested is the SteelSeries Arctis 1. You might want a removable mic if you also use your gaming headphones for other purposes, like listening to music while you're working. These wired headphones are more expensive than the Logitech G432 but offer a more comfortable fit and a better-balanced sound profile, with a bit of extra boom that can help emphasize sound effects. They don't have an app or sound customization features, however.

    Their mic has excellent recording quality, so your voice sounds clear when gaming online. It also does a good job of separating your voice from background noise, although it's not ideal if you often play in a noisy place. The headphones don't isolate you from much ambient sound, though. Their build quality feels plasticky and not particularly durable, but on the plus side, their onboard controls are easy to use and include a mic mute switch on one ear cup.

    See our review

  5. Most Durable Budget Gaming Headset

    It's not easy to find a sturdy-feeling headset at this price point. Our top pick has an okay build quality, but if you want more durable headphones, look at the HyperX Cloud 2/Cloud II. Their price varies depending on what color you buy, and they usually cost a little over $50 at the cheapest, but they have a better build quality than any headset we've tested below that price point. They feel more durable than the other picks, with a flexible headband and sturdy-feeling joints. They work with most consoles via analog connection and come with a USΒ dongle that provides low latency with PCs and PlayStations. It gives you access to more features like channel mixing and virtual surround sound.

    Their detachable mic's recording quality isn't as good as the SteelSeries Arctis 1, but it makes your voice sound clear and natural during multi-player games. As the most expensive headphones listed here, they offer the best mic noise handling performance, so noise from a busy street outside won't drown you out. They have a bass-rich sound profile that can help bring out game sound effects. Instruments and voices lack some detail and articulation, and unlike our top pick, the headphones don't have an app or come with any sound customization features.

    See our review

  6. Best Budget Wireless Gaming Headset

    If you're looking to cut the cable and go wireless, you'll want to consider the Logitech G435 LIGHTSPEED Wireless. Unlike other picks on this list, they're designed for teens and tweens, so their fit is smaller than other gaming headphones. However, they support Bluetooth as well as non-Bluetooth wireless, meaning you can use them while gaming or even during your day-to-day grind. While you can't connect to your smartphone and console simultaneously, you can still easily connect them to PCs and PlayStation consoles using the dongle or use Bluetooth to connect to your Nintendo Switch and smartphone with decently low latency. They also have just under 20 hours of continuous playback time and are equipped with an auto-off timer to help further conserve battery life if you forget to turn them off.

    While they're comparable in price to the Turtle Beach Recon 50X/Recon 50P, they're better built and more comfortable. However, their mic performance isn't as good. They have an integrated mic instead of a boom mic, and even though it does a fair job of capturing your voice clearly, the mic struggles to separate speech from background noise, making it harder for others to hear you clearly if you're gaming in a noisy place. On the upside, their warm sound profile is well-suited for gaming. The extra warmth and boom help draw attention to sound effects like footsteps while dialogue and instruments are clear in the mix. They don't have any sound customization features, though.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • SteelSeries Arctis Nova 1: The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 1 are comfortable wired gaming headphones. They have a more neutral bass response and a better mic recording quality than the Logitech G432 but don't have an app or sound customization features. Their mic isn't detachable, either. See our review
  • Turtle Beach Recon 70: The Turtle Beach Recon 70 are a little more expensive than the Turtle Beach Recon 50X/Recon 50P and offer a more comfortable fit and a more balanced mid-range, so voices and instruments sound more present in your audio. On the other hand, they lack low-bass and have a worse mic performance. See our review
  • HyperX Cloud Stinger: The HyperX Cloud Stinger are comfortable gaming headphones with a great mic performance and a more bass-heavy sound profile than the Astro A10. However, the Astro headphones have slightly better mic recording and build quality. See our review
  • Razer Kraken X: The Razer Kraken X are comfortable gaming headphones with a slightly better mic performance than the Astro A10, but they have a dark, unbalanced sound profile and lack sound customization features. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Mar 17, 2023: We've checked our picks for accuracy and product availability. However, there hasn't been a change in our recommendations.

  2. Jan 18, 2023: Added the Logitech G435 LIGHTSPEED Wireless as the 'Best Wireless Gaming Headset Under $50'.

  3. Nov 10, 2022: Replaced the Logitech G433 with the Logitech G432 because the G433 cost more than $50 currently. Added the HyperX Cloud 2/Cloud II as a 'Most Durable' option and added the SteelSeries Arctis Nova 1 to Notable Mentions.

  4. Jun 14, 2022: Made the Astro A10 the 'Most Durable Gaming Headset Under $50'. Removed the RUNMUS RGB K1 Gaming Headset from Notable Mentions and added the HyperX Cloud Stinger.

  5. Apr 15, 2022: Replaced the Logitech G432 Gaming Headset with Logitech G433 Gaming Headset because the G433 are currently on sale for about $50. Removed the Corsair HS60 PRO SURROUND since their price has increased.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best budget and cheap gaming headsets for most people to buy. 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's the list of all our reviews for headphones under $50, sorted by their gaming performance. 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 don't care about having a microphone or wireless features.

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