Top 5 Best Headsets For Gaming Under $50


A great gaming headset will allow players to truly experience the beauty of a video game’s score, sound effects and dialogue with the added benefit of allowing communication between players.

Great video games have great audio and headsets allow players to truly experience the work that goes into such audio.

Top-performing headsets help us to immerse ourselves more deeply into a game and even to gain an advantage from superior audio. The best headsets are also very comfortable and can be worn over longer periods of time.

At $50 USD, we may not get the best gaming headsets on the market. However, there are still a few great options. Let’s have a look.

The top 5 best gaming headsets under $50 are:

Let’s get into why each of the above-listed headsets is a top performer in its price class.

Since we’re having a discussion within the context of a price cap, I figure I should leave a link to a related My New Microphone article: Are Expensive Headphones (Or Cheap Headphones) Worth It?


What Makes A Gaming Headset?

Though the term “best” is subjective, we should still list out the criteria used for determining what makes a great gaming headset.

  • Comfort: this is perhaps the simplest yet most important criterion of any headphone especially for longer gaming sessions. Though highly subjective, specifications such as weight; contact pressure; earpad shape/material; stiffness, and the overall dimension play a role in comfort.
  • System compatibility: though you may only use one gaming system, it’s important that a top-performing gaming headset be compatible with numerous gaming systems in order to suit a greater number of gamers.
  • Frequency response: a great pair of headphones should be able to reproduce the full audible spectrum from 20 Hz – 20,000 Hz with clarity.
  • Number of audio channels: many games are designed with surround sound. Even though headsets only have two ear cups, they can still be designed in such a way that gives the illusion of surround sound.
  • Wireless: wireless capability is a benefit as it further improves the functionality and general comfort of the headset and rids of any cords that could get in the way during playing.
  • Microphone quality: a great headset must have a great microphone. An electret microphone with clear pick up is typical of a high-end gaming headset.

With that, let’s get into our top 5 best gaming headsets under $50!


HyperX Cloud Stinger Core

Let’s begin with the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core (link to check the price on Amazon).

HyperX Cloud Stinger Core

The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core is a superb entry-level multi-console gaming headset. It’s compatible with PC, PS4/5, Xbox One, Mac, Mobile and Nintendo Switch. When connecting to Xbox, you may need a Microsoft 3.5mm adapter, which is sold separately.

There is a stereo version as well as a 7.1 surround version, though both sets use the same 40mm moving-coil, dynamic Neodymium drivers. These drivers provide enhanced bass and clear audio for an immersive in-game experience. The closed-back ear cup helps to block out environmental noise to further improve players’ focus on the game at hand.

Note that, because the headset has a closed-back design, it may get hot around the ear during longer gaming sessions. This may be a bigger deal to some consumers. Perhaps it could be used as a good sign to take a break once your ears start sweating!

For more information on closed-back headphones and headsets, check out my article The Complete Guide To Open-Back & Closed-Back Headphones.

Other than that, the lightweight headset is rather comfortable with soft, breathable ear cushions and an adjustable headband via durable steel sliders. The headband, of course, is covered with soft material as well.

The wireless version of the 7.1 surround Cloud Stinger Core (link to check the price on Amazon) surpasses the $50 cap of this article, but is worth the extra few dollars to eliminate the cable. This wireless version utilizes a solid 2.4 GHz gaming-grade wireless connection. That being said, the cable’s really not that much of a nuisance. The wireless version has a battery life of 17 hours.

Convinient audio controls are built into the headset itself so there’s no need to scroll through game or system menus to adjust the sound.

Finally, the Cloud Stinger Core has a noise-cancelling unidirectional electret mic with an adjustable boom and swivel-to-mute option (swivel upward to mute the mic). This microphone gives gamers a clear line of communication for online gaming.

To learn more about electret microphones, check out my article The Complete Guide To Electret Condenser Microphones.

HyperX offers a 2-year warranty and free tech support with the Cloud Stinger Core.

Key Specifications (standard/stereo):

  • Transducer Type: Dynamic, 40mm with neodymium magnets
  • Impedance: 16 Ω
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 99dBSPL/mW at 1kHz
  • IP Rating: no info
  • Open/Closed-Back: Circumaural, Closed-back
  • Weight: 215g
  • Wireless/Wired: Wired
  • Microphone: Electret|Unidirectional|50Hz-18,000 Hz|-41.5 dBV (0dB=1V/Pa,1kHz)

Key Specifications (7.1 surround):

  • Transducer Type: Dynamic, 40mm with neodymium magnets
  • Impedance: 16 Ω
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 103 dBSPL/mW at 1kHz
  • IP Rating: no info
  • Open/Closed-Back: Circumaural, Closed-back
  • Weight: 240g
  • Wireless/Wired: Wired
  • Microphone: Electret|Unidirectional|50Hz-18,000 Hz|-40 dBV (0dB=1V/Pa,1kHz)

Key Specifications (wireless + 7.1):

  • Transducer Type: Dynamic, 40mm with neodymium magnets
  • Impedance: 16 Ω
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 103 dBSPL/mW at 1kHz
  • IP Rating: no info
  • Open/Closed-Back: Circumaural, Closed-back
  • Weight: 244g
  • Wireless/Wired: Wired
  • Microphone: Electret|Unidirectional|50Hz-18,000 Hz|-40 dBV (0dB=1V/Pa,1kHz)

To learn more about headphone specifications, be sure to read my article Full List: Headphone/Earphone Specifications w/ Examples.

HyperX is featured in My New Microphone’s Top 13 Best Headset Brands (Gaming, Aviation, Communication).

The regular HyperX Cloud Stinger (link to check the price on Amazon) is also worth checking out.


Razer Kraken X

Next up is the Razer Kraken X (link to check the price on Amazon).

Razer Kraken X

The Razer Kraken X is another excellent entry-level gaming headset. It’s compatible with PC, Mac, Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch and mobile devices with a 3.5mm audio jack. Note that an Xbox One stereo adapter may be required (and purchased separately).

The custom-tuned 40mm dynamic drivers produce a great balanced sound with a wide frequency response and 7.1 surround sound. Whether it’s detailed scoring, quiet footsteps, or full-out warfare, the sound of the Kraken X will get you into the world of the game.

For more information on dynamic drivers, check out my article The Complete Illustrated Guide To Moving-Coil Dynamic Headphones.

The 250g headset is rather lightweight and is designed with plush memory foam earcup cushions and soft headband padding for superb comfort. The headset’s headband is adjustable and the unit creates a firm but pleasant grip on the user’s head. Gaming for hours on end shouldn’t pose an issue in terms of headset comfort.

Though there seems to be a mesh at the outside of the Kraken X earcups, the design is actually closed-back. This keeps gaming sound from escape to the environment and ambient noise from entering the earcups. It may also get pretty warm, so perhaps taking a break every once in a while is a good idea.

The headset is designed with an electret cardioid microphone at the end of a bendable boom for easy positioning and clear communication when playing online.

On-earcup controls include volume up/down and mic mute.

If you’re a PC gamer, consider checking out the Razer Kraken X USB (link to check the price on Amazon). Note that this model is priced just above our cap of $50.

Key Specifications (Kraken X):

  • Transducer Type: 40 mm Dynamic
  • Impedance: 32 Ω
  • Frequency Response: 12 Hz – 28,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 109 dB (1 kHz)
  • IP Rating: no info
  • Open/Closed-Back: Circumaural/ Closed-back
  • Weight: 250g
  • Wireless/Wired: Wired
  • Microphone: Electret|Cardioid|100 Hz – 10 kHz|-45 ± 3 dB

Key Specifications (Kraken X USB):

  • Transducer Type: 40 mm Dynamic
  • Impedance: 32 Ω
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 106 dB (1 kHz)
  • IP Rating: no info
  • Open/Closed-Back: Circumaural/ Closed-back
  • Weight: 275g
  • Wireless/Wired: Wired
  • Microphone: Electret|Cardioid|100 Hz – 10 kHz|-42 ± 3 dB

Razer is featured in My New Microphone’s Top 13 Best Headset Brands (Gaming, Aviation, Communication).


Corsair HS50 Pro

Third on the list is the Corsair HS50 Pro (link to check the price on Amazon).

Corsair HS50 Pro

The HS50 Pro is a great entry-level choice for a gaming headset. It’s compatible with PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, and mobile devices via a universal 3.5mm connector. Not, as per usual, that the Xbox may require a Microsoft 3.5mm adapter, which is sold separately.

This headset features custom-tuned 50mm neodymium audio drivers, which are large for its class. These drivers help tremendously in achieving the bass response and clarity of this great-value headset. The HS50 Pro offers a full sound with a frequency response across the entire frequency spectrum (20 Hz – 20,000 Hz).

Related article: What Is A Good Driver Size For Headphones?

Corsair’s HS50 Pro is a stereo headset, though it is compatible with Windows Sonic surround sound for immersive 360° audio. When available, Windows Sonis will really transport the gamer into the middle of the game.

Though we can’t expect an indestructible headset at this price, the aluminum yokes of the HS50 Pro are built to last. These parts are designed for the typical wear and tear of a gaming headset and will last through years of gaming if taken care of.

Adjustable ear cups fitted with plush memory foam provide exceptional comfort. An adjustable headband allows gamers to find the perfect fit.

Note that, like most gaming headsets, the HS50 Pro has closed-back earcups. As mentioned, this provides some amount of noise isolation while keeping the game sound from leaking into the environment.

This headset is designed with a fully detachable unidirectional (cardioid) microphone. Use it when it’s needed and remove it to turn the headset into a regular pair of headphones. The electret mic is Discord-Certified for crystal-clear communication and quality sound.

To learn about cardioid microphones, check out my article What Is A Cardioid Microphone? (Polar Pattern + Mic Examples).

On-ear controls such as volume up/down and mic mute allow for on-the-go adjustments that don’t distract from the game at hand.

Key Specifications:

  • Transducer Type: 50mm Dynamic
  • Impedance: 32 Ω
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 111dB (+/-3dB)
  • IP Rating: no info
  • Open/Closed-Back: Circumaural/ Closed-back
  • Weight: 0.72 lb (330g)
  • Wireless/Wired: Wired
  • Microphone: Electret|Unidirectional|100 Hz – 10 kHz|-40 dB ± 3 dB

Corsair is featured in My New Microphone’s Top 13 Best Headset Brands (Gaming, Aviation, Communication).


Turtle Beach Recon 70

Second last is the Turtle Beach Recon 70 (link to check the price on Amazon).

Turtle Beach Recon 70

Turtle Beach is a great gaming peripheral company. Their Recon 70 headset is a superb entry-level model. It’s compatible with Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PS4/5 and now also with PC and mobile devices via a TRRS 3.5mm plug/jack. Use a mic/headphone slipper adapter if necessary with Xbox and PC.

Related article: Differences Between 2.5mm, 3.5mm & 6.35mm Headphone Jacks.

This closed-back headset is lightweight and comfortable. The padded headband is adjustable and the earcups have premium synthetic leather-wrapped ear cushions. Not only do these cushions make the headset comfortable for hours of gaming at a time but they also improve the bass response and noise isolation properties of the headset.

With a frequency response of 12 Hz to 20,000 Hz, the Recon 70 produces sounds even beyond what we can hear in the low-end. This spec doesn’t tell the entire story, though if you listen to the Recon 70, you’ll hear the thundering lows when they need to be heard. The 40mm dynamic drivers also provide crisp and clear mids and high for a full sonic picture.

To learn more about headset and headphone frequency response, check out my article What Is Headphone Frequency Response & What Is A Good Range?

The Recon 70 is compatible with Windows Sonic surround sound for immersive 360° audio. Normally the headset is stereo.

Like many of Turtle Beach’s headsets, the Recon 70 utilizes a renowned high-sensitivity omnidirectional mic for clear communication, ensuring your commands are always heard. In addition to the mic quality, the boom can be flipped up out of the way to mute it when not in use. When in mute position, it blends nicely into the headset’s design and stays out of our peripheral vision.

For more info on omnidirectional microphones, check out my article What Is An Omnidirectional Microphone? (Polar Pattern + Mic Examples).

Key Specifications:

  • Transducer Type: 40 mm Dynamic with Neodymium
  • Impedance: no info
  • Frequency Response: 12 Hz – 20,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: no info
  • IP Rating: no info
  • Open/Closed-Back: Circumaural/ Closed-back
  • Weight: 9.5 oz. (269g)
  • Wireless/Wired: Wired
  • Microphone: Electret|Omnidirectional

Turtle Beach is featured in My New Microphone’s Top 13 Best Headset Brands (Gaming, Aviation, Communication).


PDP LVL50

Last but not least is the PDP LVL50 (link to check the price on Amazon).

PDP LVL50

The PDP LVL50 wired stereo gaming headset is a great entry-level choice for gamers looking to improve their audio. The company actually has two different versions of the LVL50 for Xbox One and PS4/5. Each model is officially licensed to its console and either model can work with PC.

This headset offers excellent sound for its price thanks, in large part, to its 50mm dynamic drivers with Neodymium magnets.

Its lightweight design, comfortable padding/cushioning and breathable ear cushions make long gaming sessions easy. You won’t have to stop for headset reasons, though the closed-back design may make your ears a bit warm over time.

A bidirectional microphone is built into the headset at the end of a long adjustable boom. Muting the mic is as easy as flipping it upward, getting it out of the vision of the gamer at the same time. Like any good headset, the mic features noise-cancellation and delivers clear communication when gaming online.

To learn more about bidirectional microphones, check out my article What Is A Bidirectional/Figure-8 Microphone? (With Mic Examples).

Additionally, on-the-fly adjustments to volume can be made with convenient on-ear controls.

Though the headset is typically stereo, the Xbox version is compatible with Windows Sonic. Open up a new audible world with this surround sound format.

The PDP LVL50 Wireless (link to check the price on Amazon) is also worth checking out, though it’s a bit out of the price range defined in this article.

Key Specifications:

  • Transducer Type: 50 mm Dynamic Neodymium
  • Impedance: 32 Ω
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20,000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: -10 dBFS
  • IP Rating: no info
  • Open/Closed-Back: Circumaural|Closed-back
  • Weight: 0.6 lbs. (260g) 
  • Wireless/Wired: Wired (Wireless option)
  • Microphone: Electret|Bidirectional

Honourable Mentions

Let’s have a look at 5 more options that nearly made the top 5 gaming headsets under $50:

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