Communication is key. That’s especially true in multiplayer gaming, but if you’re stuck with the default PS4 headset, you may be disgruntled. Take even a cursory glance at customer reviews and you’ll see a laundry list of creative expletives addressing its shoddy mic and poor audio quality.
Luckily, a wave of alternative headsets are available as an upgrade, many of which showcase premium build quality and immersive audio designed to bring your favorite games to life and give you the competitive edge. Below are the absolute best gaming headsets for your precious PS4. And be sure to check out our best Xbox One headsets and our best overall gaming headsets, too.
Why should you buy this: It’s the best gaming headset for virtually any system.
Who’s it for: Those who want high fidelity audio and a premium feel.
How much it costs: $180 to $330
Why we picked the SteelSeries Arctis Pro:
The Arctis Pro excels in so many categories, it’s hard to know where to start. Regardless of your preferred setup, you’ll be able to find a version of the Pro that works for you, as both wired and wireless models exist. Both versions include plug-and-play peripherals that support hi-res sound and enable users to fine-tune EQ settings and surround sound at a much more granular scale than the competition. For multiplayer communication, the headset includes a highly flexible, crystal-clear mic that rivals even some professional-grade audio equipment. Best of all, it does all this without the need for extra software or downloads, which is something that kept previous Arctis headsets from reaching their full potential when connected to a PS4.
If you’re a multi-platform player with either multiple consoles or a gaming PC in addition to your PS4, you’ll be able to enjoy the Arctis Pro on all of those systems as well. Though the optional hi res GameDAC and the 2.4G Bluetooth receiver box are only compatible with PC and PS4, the Arctis Pro is compatible with virtually every console right out of the box, either through wireless USB or 3.5mm wired connection. All players, regardless of platform, can take advantage of the headset’s excellent stereo mix and super-clear microphone.
Finally, unlike many bulky headsets with gaudy designs, the Arctis Pro’s design looks mature and professional. Its aesthetic mimics stylish audiophile headphones, with a novel, one-size-fits-all headband that is incredibly comfortable and can be customized with different earpad fabrics and headband styles to fit your taste.
The best premium wired headset for PS4
HyperX Cloud Revolver S
Why should you buy this: The excellent-sounding Cloud Revolver S is the most versatile and intuitive headset we’ve tested.
Who’s it for: Anyone and everyone, provided a wired connection works with your setup.
How much it costs: $125 to $150
Why we picked the Cloud Revolver S:
The Cloud Revolver S from HyperX boasts incredible versatility. You’ll have three separate connection types at the ready — 3.5mm, dual 3.5mm, and wired USB. This variety enables the headset to connect to just about any platform. While offering multiple connection types is not a feature entirely unique to the Cloud Revolver S, the headset takes compatibility a step further by eliminating the need for any extra breakout boxes, software, or driver downloads. It’s a truly plug-and-play peripheral, which isn’t as common as it was in the past for high-end headsets. This is of utmost importance with the USB connection, which uses a USB dongle featuring its own built-in sound card and a controls for Dolby 7.1 virtual surround sound and EQ settings.
The connection flexibility is great, but the Cloud Revolver S’ most important feature is its brilliant sound performance. The stereo mix on its own is superb. It offers great balance and punchy bass that enhances gameplay and music. The virtual surround sound feature and EQ settings further enhance the experience, and we especially like the added gravitas from the Bass Boost preset. The final kicker is that the headset is extremely comfortable, with a sturdy design, generous padding, and an auto-fitting headband.
The best premium wireless headset for PS4
Astro Gaming A50
Who’s it for: PlayStation gamers who want a powerful wireless headset (and don’t mind paying for it).
How much it costs: $300
Why we picked the Astro Gaming A50:
The latest iterations of Astro’s A50 sport offer all the same hallmarks of their last-gen brethren, and to be honest, we couldn’t be happier with that. The phenomenal headset remains among the best choices on our list — if you can justify the exuberant price tag — granting you 5.8GHz wireless technology and virtual 7.1 surround sound within a solid, over-the-ear design. The unidirectional mic helps isolate your voice from surrounding background noise, while a built-in feature allows you to engage the mute function by simply flipping the boom upward. The three distinct EQ modes, terrific sound reproduction, and cross-platform support grant it even more appeal.
This headset also nails all the feature points you’d expect from high-quality gear such as auto shutoff, hassle-free wireless connection, and long battery life. But most importantly, the A50 makes games more engrossing and entertaining. For the serious gamer seeking an incredible wireless experience, the A50 is a great choice … provided you’re willing and able to shill out the cash.
The best budget wired for PS4
Why should you buy this: It’s more versatile and packs better sound and mic performance than headsets twice as pricey.
Who’s it for: The budget-minded gamer.
How much it costs: $50
Why we picked the Corsair HS50:
With a pricetag of $50, the Corsair HS50 is the affordable headset on our list. While that’s great news for anyone on a tight budget, even those looking to spend more may want to give the Corsair HS50 some consideration.
As a wired headset, you’ll get the versatility of that comes with a ubiquitous 3.5mm connection, plus excellent sound quality that rivals that of other headsets that cost two or three times the price. Due to its nature as a wired model using a single 3.5mm connection, it lacks the surround sound features that many more expensive options boast, but the stereo mix is strong enough that accurate positioning shouldn’t be an issue, keeping you well-immersed in whatever game you’re playing. The headset’s detachable mic adds to its attractive-yet-unassuming design, and makes it possible for the Corsair HS50 to double as a pair of regular headphones, if need be.
It’s true that there are benefits to opting for a spendier pick, but the Corsair HS50 makes a strong case that more expensive isn’t always better.
The best budget wireless for PS4
PDP Afterglow AG 9+
Why should you buy this: You’ll get a comfortable, great sounding headset without going broke.
Who’s it for: Those on a tighter budget who still want the convenience of a wireless model.
How much it costs: $70 to $100
Why we picked the PDP Afterglow AG 9+:
PDP’s Afterglow AG 9+ is a solid headset and one that manages to make an impression at or around the $100 mark. Thanks to the mic’s detachable design, the AG 9+ can even work well as just a pair of headphones, handling both music and gameplay well. The mix can be a bit top-heavy at times, but the AG9+ is a great audio device overall. Unlike some wireless headsets, there’s little-to-no annoying wireless hum, which is especially welcome during quieter moments.
While the aesthetics are less than subtle, the build quality is top notch, providing a heft and sturdiness not normally found in headsets at this price range. We like the simple, smartly placed volume and mic controls, too. Perhaps most important is the comfort of the earcups and headband padding, feeling more like soft fabric upholstery than thin leather or polyester. This is crucial for those marathon gaming sessions. On that note, the AG9+ provides over 15 hours of battery life, which is an impressive charge for any wireless device.
How we test
Like we do for all the products we test, we put gaming headsets through the ringer. We judge based upon their audio performance, mic performance, wearability, and if necessary battery life and wireless connectivity. We play games of various sound experiences to ensure the headsets will sound great during frenetic action, as well as quieter moments. We also listen to non-gaming audio and videos, including a selection of music from various genres at differing bit rates to discern whether the headsets perform well outside of a gaming context.
For mic testing, we record clips of ourselves speaking in quiet and loud environments, both with any noise canceling or enhancements toggled on and off. We use the headsets over multiple days, wearing them while gaming, watching videos, or listening to music to test the veracity of battery life claims and/or appraise their long-term wearability and comfort.