best gaming headset under $100

The Best Gaming Headset Under $100

If you’ve arrived at this article, chances are your budget is the driving factor of what gaming headset you can buy. And you’re probably looking for the best gaming headset you’re able to buy for under $100. When buying on a budget, most people’s main concern is that they are sacrificing quality for the price, and while this is often the case, there are some great headsets out there that won’t break the bank and manage to offer good audio quality and features.

Our Pick!

Razer BlackShark V2

The Razer BlackShark V2 offers exceptional quality for its price. They offer good sound quality, comfortable fit, and really impressive microphone performance.

Quick Pick – Our Awards!

Best Wireless Gaming Headset

The Corsair HS70 wins our vote for the wireless section on our best gaming headset under $100. The wireless range on the Corsair HS70 is excellent, with no dropout experienced whilst moving around. This included a range of about 15 to 20 feet, even with walls in between. Corsair says you should be able to get a range of up to 40 feet, though. The Corsair HS70 is a semi-open back headset and delivers excellent sound imaging and directional awareness.

Most Versatile Gaming Headset

When it comes to versatility, the HyperX Cloud Alpha Gaming Headset reigns supreme. The braided cables included with the headset are all detachable, as well as the boom mic. The modular design means you could even take the headset along while traveling to listen to music. 

Best PS4 Gaming Headset

The Corsair HS70 Wireless Gaming Headset wins our pick for the best gaming headset under $100 for PS4. As a semi-open back headset, the Corsair HS70 delivers excellent sound imaging and directional awareness. The HS70 features 7.1 virtual surround sound, which can only be enabled via the actual software and not on the headset itself.

Best Xbox Gaming Headset

 The Logitech G433 Gaming Headset is our pick for the best gaming headset under $100 for Xbox. For under 100 dollars, the Logitech G433 delivers good sound quality. Expect a clean, detailed, and powerful sound that isn’t too harsh or tinny. The bass boost feature ensures a decent vibration of the drivers without being too powerful and destroying the other frequencies.

What to Expect From a Gaming Headset Under $100

Let’s take a good look at what you can expect to get when buying the best gaming headset under $100:

Current $100 Benchmarks

  • Driver Size: Between 40 and 50mm
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz – 20kHz
  • Cabling: Nylon Braided

Driver (Benchmark = 40mm) Most of the headsets at this price point feature 40mm-sized drivers, with a selection of headsets that feature 50mm drivers. A larger driver often means better sound quality, but not always. 50mm drivers will hold a slight advantage in terms of bass potential.

Frequency Response (Benchmark = 20Hz – 20kHz) The standard frequency response rate for gaming headsets in this price bracket is 20Hz – 20kHz. All of the headsets on our list offer at least this, while some even offer further bass and treble sensitivity. While humans can only hear within the 20Hz – 20kHz range, headphones outside of this range will offer even more detail and clarity between the frequencies.

Cabling (Benchmark = braided) Above the $50 price point, you start to see gaming headsets with nylon braided cables. Braided cables offer more durability as they are more resistant to pulling and twisting, therefore increasing their lifespan, as opposed to plastic-shielded cables. Headsets with plastic cables on this list feature detachable cables, so you’re able to replace them should they break. 

The Best Gaming Headsets Under $100

Here are our picks for the top 10 gaming headsets that will fit into a $100 budget, and features both wired and wireless options.

1. Razer BlackShark V2

The Razer BlackShark V2 is a relatively new headphone model, released in the middle of 2020. It is the first sub-$100 release that has been able to take on the Cloud Alpha’s which we’ve been recommending for several years as our top pick.

The Razer BlackShark V2 has features and performance that we typically see from more expensive alternatives in the $150 range. Let’s run through the features and performance more in-depth.

Design & Build

If you’re familiar with Razer, you have probably seen the Kraken – which was Razer’s previous leading sub-$100 headphone. The Razer BlackShark V2 has learned from the mistakes of the Kraken and the design shows this. The BlackShark V2 is a lightweight headphone, and despite being somewhat bulky, it weighs in at just 262g, 60g less than the Razer Krakens and the HyperX Cloud Alphas. Despite the lighter weight, the BlackShark V2 is fairly durable and well-built, though one should still exercise caution as to how rough one handles tension around the hinges.

They don’t offer Razer Chroma RGB lighting, and instead focus on a more toned-down approach. The BlackShark V2 is only available in black, with the classic Razer slime green added to accent the headphones. The cables leading from the earpiece to the headband as well as the logo are green, but the rest of the headphone remains black.

The earcup shape of these headphones is more oval-shaped, which is something we haven’t seen too much from Razer, who have historically released rather circular earpiece designs (Nari, Kraken, Kraken Lite). This change to the earcup design is welcomed and can improve the way the headphones sit.

Perhaps the best improvements on the design front center around the comfort. Razer has used ultra-soft breathable memory foam for the earcups, which helps in improving overall clamp comfort, as well as reducing heat and subsequent sweat. So you don’t need to be a sweaty gamer while doing some sweaty gaming.

The ear cups and headband are both well-padded, with a light, but ultimately stable clamping force, and enough cushioning to cater to extended periods of use.

We also see passive noise cancellation with the Razer BlackShark V2, which will help to reduce ambient noise. This isn’t an active noise cancellation, it’s just that Razer designed these headphones in a way that the earpads seal well enough to block out noise to a fair degree.

Sound & Performance

The BlackShark V2 comes with 50mm TriForce Titanium drivers, which are tuned to provide a fairly balanced sound signature with some extra low-end response and some added brightness in the lower treble. The overall performance of audio on these headphones is impressive, though may not be appreciated by audiophiles looking for a flat sound. They also have a rather impressive imaging performance.

Because the low end is slightly elevated, it allows for more immersive explosions in FPS games, and when listening to music it helps in producing an enjoyable listening experience in genres like electronic dance music and hip-hop. However, it should be said that the tuning of the midrange and treble still allows these headphones to sound warm and bright, without coming across as harsh or overpowering in the highs.

The driver design on the BlackShark V2 is intended to help with the separation of frequencies, providing a more comprehensive listening experience that for gamers is also useful for better-determining footstep locations during the moments of battle where different frequencies can overpower others and lead to loss of depth.


The Razer BlackShark V2 has a detachable microphone that can be contoured into your desired position. The microphone quality is very good for a gaming headset under $100 and offers a rather clear audio presentation. While they may lack some depth, this is some of the better microphone performance you’ll find in this price range.

Controls & Connectivity

The controls on these headphones are intuitive and easy to use, albeit very simple in nature. There are only two controls, there’s a microphone mute button and then a dial that controls volume.

The BlackShark V2 are wired headphones and don’t offer wireless connectivity. Additionally, the cable is built into the speakers, so you can’t replace them. This is a downside, as cables are usually the first part that breaks, but to be fair to the BlackShark V2, the cables do feel durable and aren’t prone to as much damage as the Kraken was.

They come with a USB soundcard dongle attachment that lets you also use these headphones with PlayStation 4 and 5, though they are primarily targeted toward PC users. For Xbox One or Series X, you’ll have to connect them to your controller using the 1/8″ TRRS connection.

Overall, you’re going to have a tough time finding a better pair of gaming headphones for under $100. The BlackShark V2 has impressive sound, a good microphone, and a comfortable fit.

What’s in the box?

  • Razer BlackShark V2 Headphones
  • Detachable boom microphone
  • Carry bag
  • USB soundcard dongle

Why We Recommend It

The Razer BlackShark V2 is a sub-$100 gaming headphone with features and performance comparable to more expensive alternatives. Its lightweight design, durable build, and oval-shaped earcups improve comfort. These headphones offer passive noise cancellation and impressive sound quality, along with balanced audio and immersive low-end response.

Our Score


  • Impressive audio performance
  • Comfortable enough for long periods of gaming
  • Microphone quality


  • Non-removable wiring
  • No wireless support

2. HyperX Cloud Alpha Gaming Headset

HyperX Cloud Alpha Gaming Headset

We often see top brands taking their best-selling product, tweaking the design slightly and giving it a new name, and calling it an “upgrade”. So when HyperX launched their Cloud Alpha, I was admittedly a skeptic. Looking very similar to their ever-popular HyperX Cloud II, I was wary that the HyperX Cloud Alpha Gaming Headset was one of these “upgraded” models. Thankfully, I was wrong.

Design and Build  

When it comes to the design, the HyperX Cloud Alpha does share many of the same design elements with the Cloud II. Still featuring black ear cups and headband, with red accents on the sides, stitching, and logo. If red is not quite your thing, the Cloud Alpha is also available in a blue accent color, as well as a total blackout design. Doing away with the brushed metal on the sides of the headset, the Cloud Alpha sports a new cut-out design.

When it comes to building quality in general, this is where HyperX always excels with their headsets. The aluminum frame is very flexible but doesn’t compromise on its sturdiness. The headband is not self-adjustable, but the lack of the metal frame above the headband actually eliminates reverb, which I like. You are of course still able to find your fit with the headband sliders. The sizing grooves are well-defined and tight enough that you won’t experience any slipping. 

The HyperX Cloud Alpha is very comfortable to wear, with no ear fatigue after hours of wear. The clamping force is minimal and great for those (like myself) who wear glasses. The over-ear ear cups provide ample cushioning with their signature memory foam. Unfortunately, the Cloud Alpha does not feature rotating ear cups. 

Sound and Performance

If you’re wondering how well the HyperX Cloud Alpha handles in-game sound, you won’t be disappointed here! The Cloud Alpha features dual-chamber 50mm drivers that provide excellent separation between the bass, mids, and highs. The Cloud Alpha features stereo sound, unlike the Cloud II which offers 7.1 virtual surround sound. Which is better? That’s personal preference but most people, including pro players, stick to stereo sound for FPS gaming. 

With all that said, the HyperX Cloud Alpha delivers a frequency response of 13 – 27,000Hz compared to the Cloud II’s 15 – 25,000Hz. This means the Cloud Alpha performs better in the bass as well as in the treble, compared to the Cloud II. 

Taking a look at noise isolation, the closed ear cups provide a good seal around your ears and do an excellent job of eliminating any background noise. Sound leakage is also very minimal. The detachable boom microphone also offers noise-canceling features. It also does a great job of eliminating any background noise. If you have a mechanical keyboard, it does an excellent job at isolating your keystrokes too. 

Microphone quality itself is superb. The mic delivers a natural sounding voice, making it a great choice for Twitch streamers too.


The HyperX Cloud Alpha Gaming Headset is cross-platform compatible. This means you’ll be able to connect it to your Xbox or PS4, as well as your PC or even mobile device. The HyperX Cloud Alpha Gaming Headset was voted as our best pc gaming headset under $100. However, when it comes to versatility, the Cloud Alpha reigns supreme. The braided cables included with the headset are all detachable, as well as the boom mic. The modular design means you could even take the headset along while traveling to listen to music. 

The braided headset cable spans 1.3m in length and features an inline audio controller to adjust the volume and mute the microphone. HyperX also includes an extension cable that features an audio and mic splitter. The extension cable provides an additional 2m of length, which is great for routing to the back of your PC. 

What’s in the box?

  • HyperX Cloud Alpha gaming headset
  • Detachable boom microphone
  • 1.3m braided cable with inline audio control
  • 2m braided extension cable with audio/mic splitter
  • User manual and warranty card

Why We Recommend It

The HyperX Cloud Alpha gaming headset, chosen as the best under $100, impresses with its design, build quality, and comfort. The dual-chamber 50mm drivers deliver excellent sound separation, and the closed-ear cups provide effective noise isolation. The detachable boom microphone offers clear audio, and the headset is cross-platform compatible with detachable cables and an extension cable for added convenience.

Our Score


  • Durable build quality
  • Minimal clamping force
  • Wide sound experience


  • Fairly heavy

3. Razer Kraken Gaming Headset

Razer Kraken Gaming Headset

Next up on our best gaming headset under $100 list we have the Razer Kraken Gaming Headset, the upgraded version to the previous model, the Kraven Pro V2. The Kraken is available in a standard edition, as well as a Tournament Edition. The only difference in specs between the two is the addition of a THX Spatial Audio inline controller.

Design and Build  

Compared to its predecessor, the Kraken doesn’t deviate much, if at all, when it comes to the design. The Kraken still features a bauxite aluminum frame, providing a lightweight but sturdy build. However, the Kraken now features thicker padding along with the headband and better padding on the ear cups. 

While the earcups remain the same size, the memory foam ear cushions now feature a cooling gel inside. The Kraken is also glasses-friendly, with indented channels to provide further comfort. 

The over-ear cup is large enough to avoid any ear fatigue and the earcups are also nice and deep too. Overall, the Razer Kraken is very comfortable to wear for extended lengths of time.

It’s important to note that, while the back of each ear cup may look like an open-back headset with its mesh-like design, this is purely aesthetic. The Razer Kraken is, in fact, still a closed-back headset. 

Sound and Performance

While the Razer Kraken does still feature the same 50mm drivers as the Kraken Pro V2, headsets at this price point typically only feature 40mm sized drivers so they’re still a step above the rest. In terms of performance, the Kraken delivers decent bass but falls short on the treble slightly. When compared with more premium headsets, the upper ranges aren’t quite as rich and detail is lacking. However, for a budget headset under 100 dollars, the overall sound quality is excellent value for money.

The Razer Kraken features a retractable cardioid microphone that reduces background and ambient noises. It’s Discord-certified and delivers clear vocals. One thing I would have preferred is a pop filter, as I found it to be quite sensitive to p’s and t’s.


Cross-platform compatible, the Razer Kraken can be used with a PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X & S, Mobile. 

The Razer Kraken comes with a short 1.3m braided cable, with a 2m extension cable included as well. The shorter cable, which features a 3.5mm jack as well as an in-line audio controller, is great for console and mobile devices. The braided extension cable features an audio/mic splitter and is suited for PC.

What’s in the box?

  • Razer Kraken Gaming Headset
  • 2m Extension Cable 
  • 2 x Razer Stickers
  • User Manual

Why We Recommend It

The Razer Kraken is focused on affordability. It’s typically available for around $60 and offers reasonable performance across all categories. The Kraken offers more color options than the BlackShark V2.

Our Score


  • Durable plastics
  • Reasonably comfortable
  • Cables last well


  • Earcups are prone to wear over time
  • Treble performance isn’t great

4. Corsair HS70 Pro Wireless Gaming Headset

Corsair HS70 Pro Wireless Gaming Headset

If you’re into wireless gaming gear, then the Corsair HS70 Pro is exactly what you want! Winning our pick for the best wireless gaming headset under $100, the Wireless HS70 Pro follows in the footsteps of the Corsair HS50.

Design and Build  

The Corsair HS70 boasts a sturdy and super flexible design that doesn’t creak at all when flexed. The size-adjustable headband is padded, with stitching along the headband ensuring extra durability. The HS70 is available in 3 color options, full black, black with white accents, or black with cream accents.

With a balanced clamping force, the Corsair HS70 is comfortable to wear for extended periods of time. The ear cups fit nicely over the ear, but I do wish they were slightly thicker to create a better seal. 

Being wireless, there’s obviously no inline audio controller. As such, the Corsair HS70 features all of its controls within the earcups themselves. The HS70 also features automatic audio cues to let you know when your microphone is muted or when surround sound has been enabled. The headset also turns off automatically after a set period of time, to preserve the battery life. This feature can be disabled, or the time period can be adjusted to suit your needs. 

Sound and Performance

As a semi-open back headset, the Corsair HS70 delivers excellent sound imaging and directional awareness. As is to be expected with this design, sound leakage is present and you can hear the external environment too. Bass response is somewhat flat in the default EQ profile, but a bass-boost option can be enabled. The Corsair HS70 features 7.1 virtual surround sound, which can only be enabled via the actual software and not on the headset itself.

In terms of battery performance, the Corsair HS70 shines bright. Offering 16 hours of battery life they are also quick to charge – taking just an hour and a half to fully charge. Another great feature is that you are also still able to use the headset while charging. The only fault I could find is that there isn’t any clear/quick battery indicator. You’ll need to go into the software to check on the battery status. 

The Corsair HS70 features a detachable microphone delivering clear vocal audio. Without having a windscreen, the mic does pick up some typing on a mechanical keyboard, as well as your breath. There is some compression present, but it’s not as detailed or clear. 


For connectivity, you’ll need to connect the USB receiver. The receiver works with both PC and PlayStation. The wireless range on the Corsair HS7 is excellent, with no dropout experienced whilst moving around. This included a range of about 15 to 20 feet, even with walls in between. Corsair says you should be able to get a range of up to 40 feet, though.

What’s in the Box?

  • Corsair HS70 Pro Wireless Gaming Headset
  • Detachable Microphone 
  • 5ft USB Charging Cable
  • USB Receiver
  • User Manual

Why We Recommend It

The Corsair HS70 Pro is a top pick for wireless gaming headsets under $100, offering a sturdy design, comfortable fit, good sound quality, and reliable wireless connectivity with a decent range.

Our Score


  • Sturdy yet flexible design
  • Easy-to-use controls
  • Excellent sound imaging


  • Ear cups could be slightly thicker for a better seal and noise isolation
  • Lack of clear/quick battery indicator requires checking through software for battery status

5. Logitech G433 7.1 Wired Gaming Headset 

Logitech gaming headset under $100

Bringing something different to the table, Logitech has released an (almost fully) fabric-covered headset – the Logitech G433. One of the biggest complaints about the previous model, the G233 was the poor quality caused by the plastic ear cups. 

Design and Build  

The build quality of the Logitech G433 is excellent. It’s flexible yet sturdy without creaking and squeaking when handling the headset. Adjusting the headband sizing works well, and the earcups rotate 90-degrees for a comfortable rest on your shoulders. 

The fabric covering, while it might look good, is somewhat disappointing. The sports mesh isn’t very soft, it picks up everything from small bits of lint, to loose hairs, and even dry skin (gross!). Thankfully, Logitech has included an extra set of soft velour ear cushions that are far more comfortable to wear. The downside to using these, however, is that the different fabrics don’t match well together and it does take away from the aesthetic design of the headset. I’d have preferred to see the whole headset covered in the softer velour fabric instead. 

Sound and Performance

For a gaming headset under 100 dollars, the Logitech G433 delivers in sound quality. Expect a clean, detailed, and powerful sound that isn’t too harsh or tinny. The bass boost feature ensures a decent vibration of the drivers without being too powerful and destroying the other frequencies. The Logitech G433 comes with its own software to select custom EQ settings. This means you can tailor your bass, mids, and trebles to your own personal preferences. 

For surround sound audio, a USB DAC is included with the Logitech G433 headset. This is a no-frills, plug-and-play device, without any LED indicators. surround sound settings are controlled via the Logitech software. When switching to surround sound, you lose the powerful volume, and sounds become distant. I prefer the positional accuracy experienced in stereo, but that’s my preference. 

The microphone quality delivers clear vocals but lacks in power to properly drive. This meant having to boost it in order to achieve decent volume. While this does the job, it does also increase hiss and static. 


The Logitech G433 Gaming Headset ships with an abundance of accessories to ensure cross-platform compatibility. A detachable cable for the console, along with another detachable cable for mobile, as well as an audio mic splitter for PC, is all included with the gaming headset. The modular design means that you can swap out the cables and use the same headset across any of the gaming platforms of your choice. The detachable microphone means the Logitech G433 headset can also even be used on-the-go for listening to music. 

What’s in the Box?

  • Logitech G433 Gaming Headset
  • Detachable Microphone 
  • Detachable Cable For Console
  • Detachable Cable For Mobile
  • Audio/ Mic Splitter for PC
  • USB Sound Card
  • Velour Earpads
  • Carrying Case

Why We Recommend It

The Logitech G433 is a fabric-covered headset with excellent build quality. It delivers clean and powerful sound. It offers versatile connectivity options too.

Our Score


  • Excellent build quality
  • Clean, detailed, and powerful sound quality
  • Abundance of accessories


  • Fabric covering picks up lint
  • Microphone requires boosting for decent volume

6. SteelSeries Arctis 5 

SteelSeries Arctis 5

Something for the RGB-lovers of the world, the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is the middle-tier in the Arctis Series of Gaming Headsets. 

Design and Build  

The body of the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is very lightweight, made entirely of plastic. However, the build is still sturdy, with nothing creaking while handled. The matte coating gives it a more premium look, while the subtle RGB illumination on the ear cups is just enough without being too over-the-top.

The headband of the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is a 2-piece design, with the inner band being made of a stretchy fabric that can be adjusted to suit your head size. For the average person, the band does a good job of supporting the headset so the lack of padding isn’t an issue here. However,  for larger head sizes, the plastic headband will do the supporting. As such, the lack of padding on the headband may be somewhat uncomfortable for you. 

The earcups do swivel, allowing you to rest them on your shoulders. However, it is important to note that the earcups sit fairly close to each other, so wearing the headset around your neck isn’t as comfortable as I’d have hoped. The fabric on the ear cups is soft and breathable, making it comfortable to wear the SteelSeries Arctis 5 for extended periods of time. The drivers are also angled slightly, allowing for better audio direction. 

Sound and Performance

Overall, the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is a fun gaming headset. It features a detailed sound signature, without any harsh treble. The bass hits deep and comes in strong without overpowering the other frequencies. As the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is USB powered, there’s more than enough power so you don’t need to worry about whether or not it will be loud enough. There is also no distortion at high volumes either, which is great. 

While the SteelSeries Arctis 5 does support X v2.0 7.1 Surround Sound, enabling it actually kills your sound quality. You lose all of your excellent detail separation experienced with stereo sound. While you might gain a wider environment feeling with the surround sound, it’s at the cost of losing all of your positional awareness. 

For competitive gameplay, the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is an excellent choice. This is due to its great stereo imaging for spatial orientation. The soundstage is slightly on the smaller end, which means you can pinpoint exactly where the distant sounds are coming from. The smaller sound stage does mean you lose out on that wide-environment feel though. 

Moving on to the microphone, it overs clear vocals that aren’t too nasally. It has a decent low-end pickup but is also extremely sensitive to sound. Accidentally brushing over it makes a lot of noise. There is also a small amount of digital noise when noise reduction is disabled. One important thing to note is that the microphone doesn’t automatically mute when it’s retracted.


As mentioned earlier, the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is powered via a mini USB-A connection. This is not a very common jack though, so if you’re connecting to your phone or a game controller, you’ll need to use the 3.5mm headphone adapter. Thanks to having both USB as well as analog connector options, the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is cross-platform compatible. However, it’s important to note that the RGB lighting requires a USB connection. 

The mic mute and volume controls can be found on the earcup itself, with a chat audio mixer found on the cable itself. An interesting, yet not particularly useful, feature of the SteelSeries Arctis 5 is the incorporation of both a USB as well as a 3.5mm input jack on the earcup. The 3.5mm jack is used for audio-sharing functionality, allowing you to connect a second headset into the Arctis 5 and share your audio with a friend.

What’s in the Box?

  • SteelSeries Arctis 5 Gaming Headset
  • Headphone Cable 
  • 3.5mm Adapter
  • USB Sound Card/ Mixer

Why We Recommend It

The SteelSeries Arctis 5 is a lightweight gaming headset with a sturdy build and subtle RGB illumination. It delivers detailed sound and powerful bass. The surround sound reduces positional awareness.

Our Score


  • Lightweight and sturdy build with a premium look
  • Detailed sound with deep and strong bass
  • Great stereo imaging for spatial orientation


  • Lack of padding on the headband may be uncomfortable for those with larger head sizes
  • Enabling surround sound diminishes detail separation

7. EPOS Sennheiser GSP 300 Gaming Headset

EPOS Sennheiser GSP 300 Gaming Headset

Sennheiser is well known for its high-quality gaming headsets, thus why it is on our best gaming headset under $100 list. Compared with their more premium-priced headset, the Sennheiser PC 373D, we were curious to see where Sennheiser cut costs in order to accommodate the budget price of the GSP 300. 

Design and Build  

The Sennheiser GSP 300 features a lightweight black plastic frame that’s pretty flexible and size-adjustable. The inclusion of blue accent colors (also available in red) was a smart move by Sennheiser. It allowed them to produce a great-looking headset without pushing the price up. 

Taking a look at comfort, the Sennheiser GSP 300 has just enough padding along with the double-frame headband with a clamping force that makes the headset very comfortable to wear. The PU leather ear cushions are soft but still offer excellent sound isolation. The slightly angled ear cups provide an excellent seal.

A large volume-adjust wheel on the right earcup is very easy to access, while the non-detachable microphone swivels up and down with an auto-mute function.

Sound and Perfromance

The Sennheiser GSP 300 delivers great sound quality. It’s pleasant and there’s clarity on the high end without being piercing. The mid-range is slightly reserved and there is a slight bass boost, which gives the body without overpowering the other frequencies. Being a closed-back headset you shouldn’t expect to have a wide and open soundstage. Rather, the bass is tight and the clarity excellent. 

The Sennheiser GSP 300 delivers great sound quality. It’s pleasant and there’s clarity on the high end without being piercing. The mid-range is slightly reserved and there is a slight bass boost, which gives the body without overpowering the other frequencies. Being a closed-back headset you shouldn’t expect to have a wide and open soundstage. Rather, the bass is tight and the clarity excellent. 

Looking at the microphone quality, it’s definitely one of the best in its price range. The noise-canceling microphone is clear and detailed without being nasal and there is no muffling. The microphone volume pickup is slightly on the lower-end when compared to other gaming headsets. 


As is to be expected, the Sennheiser GSP 300 is cross-platform compatible. The headset ships with a non-removable 2.5m cable with an audio/mic splitter connector for PC. There is a combo adapter included for console and mobile compatibility.

What’s in the Box?

  • Sennheiser GSP 300 Gaming Headset
  • Audio/ Mic Combo Adapter 
  • User Manual

Why We Recommend It

The SteelSeries Arctis 1 is a budget gaming headset with a decent build quality and comfortable design. It delivers clear sound, performs well for gaming, and has a detachable microphone. It’s a good budget pick.

Our Score


  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Great sound quality with pleasant highs and a slightly boosted bass


  • Microphone volume pickup is slightly lower compared to other gaming headsets
  • Non-removable cable

8. SteelSeries Arctis 1 Wireless Gaming Headset

SteelSeries Arctis 5

As far as budget gaming headsets go, the SteelSeries Arctis 1 packs a punch for its price. When making a budget headset, compromises must always be made to either the build quality or the sound quality in order to justify bringing the price down. The SteelSeries Arctis 1 is no exception to this.

Design and Build  

Starting with the headband, SteelSeries has really cheaped out here and used a very budget-feeling plastic. The result is a rigid headset that isn’t as comfortable to put on and take off the headset. The headband is, however, reinforced with steel and can be twisted and flexed without breaking.

The ear cups are covered in a cloth fabric that is breathable and comfortable to wear. While perhaps not the plushest that we’ve seen – it’s still acceptable for a pair of budget gaming headphones. The earcups do rotate 90 degrees, allowing you to comfortably rest them around your neck when not in use. 

As a dual wired/wireless headset, the SteelSeries Arctis 1 does not include an in-line audio controller on the cable but rather features controls on the earcup. Many people, myself included, actually prefer this design. The controls are easy to access and adjust. 

Moving on to clamping force, we found the SteelSeries Arctis 1 to be slightly on the tighter side here. Something to be aware of if your head size is on the larger side as these won’t be very comfortable for you.

Sound and Performance

Taking a look at the sound quality, the SteelSeries Arctis 1 Gaming Headset delivers a clear and clean sound. The bass isn’t overdone, which is often seen in budget builds. While there was a slight amount of distortion in the mids and treble, it still performs well enough. The SteelSeries Arctis 1 includes the same drivers found in the SteelSeries Arctis 7, with the signature Arctis soundscape.

For watching movies or listening to music, the SteelSeries Arctis 1 headset is good enough. For gaming, it performs within expectation. As a budget pair of gaming headphones, don’t expect audiophile sound quality. The SteelSeries Arctis 1 features stereo sound, with a very decent left and right separation of footsteps in FPS-style games like CS:GO.

Microphone quality is standard. The SteelSeries Arctis 1 includes a detachable, noise-canceling microphone featuring a bidirectional design. It is also Discord-certified. Feedback and hiss are present at louder volumes, though. So be sure to reduce your microphone sensitivity where possible to avoid this. 


Unlike many of the other brands, SteelSeries has skipped out on the braided cable and instead gone with soft-touch rubber cables. As the headset offers both wired and wireless features, we let it slide on this one. 

With that said, the SteelSeries Arctis 1 is still cross-platform compatible, though. A USB-C wireless transmitter is included, with two detachable audio cables included – one with a 3.5mm jack and another with a USB-A jack. An audio-mic splitter for PC is also included. Additionally, the microphone is also detachable, making the SteelSeries Arctis 1 a great pair of headphones to use for music while traveling too.

What’s in the Box?

  • SteelSeries Arctis 1 Wireless Gaming Headset
  • USB-C Wireless Transmitter
  • USB-A Adapter Cable
  • 3.5mm Audio Cable
  • Product Information Guide

Why We Recommend It

The SteelSeries Arctis 1 is a budget gaming headset with a decent build quality and comfortable design. It delivers clear sound, performs well for gaming, and has a detachable microphone. It’s a good budget pick.

Our Score


  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Great sound quality with pleasant highs and a slightly boosted bass


  • Microphone volume pickup is slightly lower compared to other gaming headsets
  • Non-removable cable

9. HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Gaming Headset

HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Gaming Headset

Another excellent contender for the best gaming headset under $100 is the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Gaming Headset. It is perfect for the gamer looking to add to their wireless gear collection. The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Gaming Headset contends with the Corsair HS70 for its spot on this list. 

Design and Build  

An all-plastic outer frame means the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core is lightweight and comfortable to wear. Going for a sand-blasted texture finish, HyperX has achieved an excellent aesthetic without pushing up the price. The metal side-extensions offer great durability and longevity to the headset too.

HyperX headsets, in general, offer a comfortable clamping force, and the HyperX Cloud Stinger is no different. The PU leather earcups offer sufficient padding for a comfortable fit without creating a very strong seal to where you can’t hear anything around you. There is some passive sound isolation, though. The ear cups do also swivel 90 degrees, which means they can be rested on your shoulders when not in use.

Sound and Performance

Taking a look at the sound quality, the HyperX Cloud Stinger Wireless delivers well-defined sound cues but the sound stage is fairly narrow. This is fine for games like CS:GO, but affects things like listening to music and watching movies. Volume output is great, but the Cloud Stinger Core Wireless bass is heavy, with the mid-range lacking in detail and buried behind the bass. Unfortunately, this can’t be tweaked in the EQ settings either as no driver software is included with the headset. 

The non-removable microphone auto-mutes when swiveled up. In terms of vocal clarity, the microphone disappoints with a lot of signal processing and poor definition. The lower-end is quite muddy and there isn’t really any decent noise-canceling when typing on a mechanical keyboard.


The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless is compatible with PC and PS4 only. Being a wireless headset, you can expect a battery life of around 17 hours at 50% volume. Higher volumes will bring down your battery life even further. Thankfully, you are still able to use it while charging but the cable provided with the headset is quite short. Wireless range is pretty decent, with zero dropouts experienced when making trips to the kitchen. 

What’s in the Box?

  • HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Gaming Headset
  • USB Dongle
  • USB Charging Cable
  • User Manual

Why We Recommend It

The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Gaming Headset is a lightweight and comfortable option with a durable build. It delivers good sound quality, but the bass is heavy, and the mid-range lacks detail. The microphone has poor vocal clarity. It offers wireless connectivity with a decent range.

Our Score


  • Lightweight and comfortable design
  • Durable build with metal side-extensions
  • Swiveling ear cups for resting on shoulders


  • Narrow sound stage, not ideal for music and movies
  • Heavy bass with lacking mid-range detail
  • Mediocre microphone with poor vocal clarity and noise-canceling

10. Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless Gaming Headset

Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless Gaming Headset

An upgrade to the Corsair Void Pro, the Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless sees the addition of PS4 compatibility and an increased frequency response and sensitivity. The microphone has also changed from a unidirectional noise-canceling to omnidirectional and is also more sensitive too. 

Design and Build

The Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless looks almost identical to the Void Pro, with an easy to adult and very flexible headband. Memory foam padding on the headband and ear cups is very soft but comfortable, with the earcups rotating 90 degrees as well. The overall construction of the Void Elite is decent, but I did find the swivel on the earcups to be particularly loose. This means the headset will swing around when picking them up or taking them off.

I did find that, when tilting my head forward, the headband would slip off. This will obviously depend on your head size and shape, but it is something to be aware of. Looking online, I noted that I wasn’t the only person to experience this issue either.

Sound and Performance

The first thing you’ll notice is how loud the Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless is. You’ll likely never use it at its full volume setting as it really packs a punch in terms of volume.

Looking at the sound quality, the Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless delivers a rich, full sound with excellent detail. The virtual 7.1 surround sound offers a slightly wider environment feeling without hurting directional awareness. There is some bass heaviness present which can be toned down in the EQ settings.

The boom-style microphone delivers acceptable audio quality but I did find the volume to be somewhat lacking. The change to an omnidirectional mic means that the microphone picks up a lot of environmental noise and is not ideal if you have a mechanical keyboard.


Being a wireless headset, there are of course no inline controls. Instead, you’ll find the power on/off button, the mic mute button, as well as a volume dial on the left earcup. The swivel mic auto-mutes, and the headset itself have an auto-shutoff feature to preserve battery life. Unfortunately, the Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless is not cross-platform compatible and is only suited for PC and PS4.

In terms of wireless range, the Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless offers a very decent range without dropout. I was able to travel to my kitchen and even went outside, without experiencing any dropout. It holds up really well, even through brick walls. 

Looking at battery life, the Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless will get you around 12-15 hours. The headset can be used while charging but you’ll need to connect both the charging cable as well as the USB dongle to your PC.

What’s in the Box?

  • Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless Gaming Headset
  • 1.5m Micro USB Charging Cable
  • USB Wireless Dongle
  • User Manual

Why We Recommend It

The Corsair Void RGB Elite Wireless is an upgraded headset with PS4 compatibility, improved audio, and a more sensitive omnidirectional microphone. It has a comfortable design but loose earcup swivels. The sound quality is rich with adjustable bass.

Our Score


  • Increased frequency response and sensitivity for improved audio
  • Comfortable memory foam padding on headband and ear cups
  • Rich, full sound with virtual 7.1 surround and adjustable bass


  • Loose swivel on earcups can cause swinging when handling
  • Headband may slip off when tilting head forward
  • Omnidirectional microphone picks up environmental noise and lacks volume

A Buyer’s Guide To Gaming Headphones Under $100

While it’s easy enough to give you some recommendations, it’s also valuable to understand why it is we’ve selected these products.

Stereo vs. Surround Sound Headphones

Within this price range, you’ll find a variety of gaming headsets featuring stereo sound as well as 7.1 virtual surround sound. Opinion on which one is better for gaming is very divided, with some loving surround sound and others preferring to stick to stereo sound. Surround sound headphones will give you that immersive sound experience with positional accuracy. The upside to surround sound headsets is that you can switch it over to stereo sound whenever you want, giving you more versatility to have different sound types depending on the gaming you’re playing. 

Gaming Headsets vs. Gaming Earbuds

While gaming headsets have the drawback of being bulky and cumbersome to wear for long periods at a time, gaming earbuds provide an excellent alternative to this. If you’re interested in a more lightweight option, be sure to check out our full guide to the Best Gaming Earbuds.

How Different Sound Profiles Can Affect Your Gaming Experience

In the audio world, it’s commonly considered that a balanced sound profile is preferable. A balanced sound is one where the bass, midrange, and treble are not emphasized or recessed. With gaming, however, there tends to be a preference towards a slightly more ‘v-shaped’ sound signature. It’s called a V-shape because the left and right ends of a frequency response chart are elevated. V-shaped headphones have an emphasized bass and treble.

Having more emphasis on your bass response can create a more immersive experience during explosions and gunfire. A completely flat sound profile may be good for mixing and producing, but when it comes to games it can leave the experience feeling like it’s missing something.

How did we select the best gaming headset?

In our search for the best gaming headset you can buy at a budget of between $50-$100, we looked at a variety of factors. These included the obvious things like driver size and overall sound quality, but we also looked at things like cross-platform compatibility, as well as build quality and comfort. Further to this, we went out and looked at what you guys like. Some of the most popular headsets aren’t necessarily the newest model either, and there’s often a reason for that (brands upgrading their best-selling product without really upgrading the specs). 

If we left out a particular headset that you think should absolutely be on the best gaming headset under $100 list, be sure to let us know about it down in the comment section!

We’ve also included some important things to consider before buying, along with a handy FAQ section at the end – be sure to check it out!

Interested in finding out what is the best gaming headset under 100 dollars? See our top ten list of the best gaming headset under $100 below!

What to Look for in a Gaming Headset – a Comprehensive Guide

This will let you know what to look for should you decide none of the headphones in this list fit your needs.

1. Sound Quality

It goes without saying that the most important factor to consider will be the sound – both sound quality as well as sound type is important. Let’s break down the factors that affect sound quality:


The drivers in a headset will give you a good indication of the sound quality. A larger driver will generally deliver superior sound to a smaller driver. High-quality headsets will usually feature 50mm neodymium drivers, but you can also expect to see 45mm and even 35mm drivers in gaming headsets below the $100 price-point. 

Try to avoid buying headsets with smaller drivers but don’t assume that a 50mm driver in a headset automatically means it will deliver high sound quality either. Try to look for headsets that are custom-tuned or those that use proprietary drivers. If a company uses proprietary drivers in their headset, they’re almost guaranteed to produce high-quality sound.

Frequency Response

This might sound like a very technical term, but it’s actually pretty simple. Frequency response refers to the range of frequencies that headphone drivers can pick up. A low-frequency response will deliver thunderous bass while a high-frequency response performs in the highs and treble. Most gaming headsets provide a frequency response of 20Hz-20kHz but some provide a better range, like the HyperX Cloud Alpha’s 13 Hz – 27 kHz range.

2. Sound Type

Sound type refers to either stereo sound or surround sound. Gaming headsets are available in both options and you should be aware of the differences before buying. While we do have an entire article featuring surround sound headphones (if that’s what you’re after), we’ll give a quick breakdown here:

Stereo Sound Gaming Headsets

Stereo sound is found in headphones with two drivers (speakers), one in the left ear and one in the right. Stereo headsets are ideal for listening to music and for providing that left/right separation. They don’t provide directional sound, so if you’re after an immersive gaming experience – surround sound headsets are better suited for you.

Surround Sound Gaming Headsets

As mentioned, surround sound headsets are going to give you directional sound and that immersive gaming experience. Within this type of headphones, there are two subtypes:

True Surround Sound

Headsets featuring true surround sound are more expensive as they are hardware-driven. This means that 7.1 (true) surround sound headsets include 8 separate audio channels to provide directional sound. 

Virtual Surround Sound

As you might have guessed, virtual surround sound headsets offer the surround sound experience without actually having eight separate audio channels. These headsets still actually only have a left and right driver, but they basically trick your brain into thinking that the sound is coming from more than 2 sources. The benefit of this is that you still get that directional, immersive gaming experience but at a lower cost. 

2. Connectivity and Compatibility

Moving along to connectivity, here we also have 2 types:

Analogue Connection (3.5 mm)

Commonly known as either the headphone jack or AUX connector, gaming headsets with a 3.5mm jack are generally found on your low-end/ budget headsets. These headsets will suit mobile gamers best.

Digital Connection (USB)

Next up we have a USB connector. These headsets provide better sound quality than headsets with analog connectors. While they’re generally more expensive, you will still be able to find gaming headsets under 100 dollars with USB connectors. 

Most of the manufacturers include at least two cable connections to allow for cross-platform compatibility or an audio/mic splitter at the very least.

3. Build Quality and Comfort

Nobody games for short periods of time. If you’re going to be wearing something for hours on end – best ensure it’s comfortable to wear. If you’ve ever purchased a gaming headset with earcups that are too small for your ears, you’ll know the value in buying for comfort!

Things to look for here include:
  • Earcup size
  • Earcup type (on-ear vs over-ear)
  • Cushion Material (Memory foam, Gel-infused, etc)
  • Headband adjustability

4. Wireless

Wireless technology is constantly improving, and these days a wireless gaming headset can offer excellent sound quality, without suffering from drop-outs and battery life problems. If you’re looking to go for a wireless option, make sure to look at its battery time, charge time, as well as whether or not it can be used while charging.

Another thing to bear in mind is that depending on the version of Bluetooth the wireless headset supports, sometimes a slight delay of audio can occur. This is known as latency and can really impact your performance. 

5. Microphone

Last but not least, we have the microphone. All gaming headsets will include a microphone and you should definitely pay attention to the quality of it before buying. Nobody likes playing on a  server with a guy (or girl) whose mic has horrible feedback and static. It’s annoying, don’t be that guy. 

Headsets with noise-canceling microphones are great, they eliminate ambient sound and background noise. You’ll find this feature on both wired and wireless gaming headsets. More useful microphone features include in-line controllers to mute the mic quickly, or the auto-mute feature when moving the boom mic into an upright position.

Microphones with a pop filter or windscreen are preferable, although not all gaming headsets feature them. Pop filters help to eliminate p’s and t’s from your speech, as well as your breath. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How much should I spend on a gaming headset?

The price range of gaming headsets ranges from extremely budget-friendly (below $50) to more premium headsets costing way over $100. The higher the quality of speaker drivers, as well as things like a premium build quality, will see you paying a more premium price. 
As you’ve seen from this article, there is still an abundance of choices within the $50-$100 price range. Here, you’ll find some options delivering the excellent sound quality and almost all of these gaming headsets are cross-compatible too.

What headsets do pro gamers use?

This varies from team to team, depending on the platform, as well as their sponsor. Check out this great tool to check what gear your favorite player uses.

Why do pros use 2 headsets?

When at tournaments, pro players need to block out all of the background noise like the crowd and casters. To do this, they wear noise-reducing headphones that emit white noise. This not only helps them stay focused and able to hear their own in-game sounds clearly, but it also prevents any player from overhearing vital information from either the casters or the audience. For in-game audio and communication, players use a pair of gaming earbuds

Is 7.1 better for gaming?

This is largely a personal choice, and also depends on the type of game too. 7.1 surround sound provides an immersive gaming experience where you feel like you’re actually inside the game. Surround sound can also help track the direction of footsteps and movement within FPS-style games. 

Do pros use 7.1 surround sound?

Perhaps when playing in their personal time, but not in tournaments. This is due to the fact that they use gaming earbuds that do not have surround sound features.

Audiostance Author - Zach Scheepers
Written by

Zach is a South African-based writer, audiophile, and PC enthusiast. When he's not writing for Audiostance, you'll find him reading and re-enacting scenes from the Lord of the Rings.

View all articles
Leave a reply