PC HardwarePeripheralsSpeakers & Headsets

Kingston HyperX Cloud Gaming Headset Review

Kingston is one of the most recognizable names in the memory and flash storage market and one of their signature brands is their HyperX line of high-end products aimed at power users, enthusiasts and gamers. We have had the pleasure of working with Kingston for a very long time, having tested and reviewed a lot of their products and it is always a joy to see what the company has in store for its customers.

Recent market trends have made the PC business a very fierce battleground and companies have to be able to adapt to this ever-changing landscape. Thankfully though, PC gaming has been on the rise and is larger than ever with eSports pushing more and more into the mainstream.

kingston_hyperx_logo

Every company sees the potential in this market but Kingston’s latest stab at the eSports market is a completely surprising move. First seen in CES, the Kingston HyperX Cloud is a collaboration between Kingston and Swedish peripheral maker QPAD which brings both companies’ touches to the product. Kingston has sent us a retail sample before launch and we’ll give you the full breakdown if these pair of cans really hammer it down.

HyperX Cloud Features

  • Hi-Fi capable 53mm drivers for supreme audio quality
  • 15 – 25.000 Hz frequency response
  • Detachable microphone (quick and easy to plug/unplug for music-only purposes)
  • Solid aluminum construction for durability and stability
  • Super-soft padded leather headband with memory foam on cups for maximum comfort
  • Closed cup for enhanced bass reproduction and passive noise cancellation
  • Compatible for desktop, notebooks, mobile phones, PlayStation 4, and airplane adaptors

HyperX Cloud Specifications

Headphones

  • Frequency response: 15 – 25.000 Hz
  • Transducer type: Dynamic, Closed Ø 53mm Driver
  • SPL Sound pressure level: 98 ±3 dB

Microphone

  • Transducer type: Condenser (back electret)
  • Polar Pattern: Cardioid
  • Frequency response: 100 – 12.000 Hz

Official product page

Closer Look – HyperX Cloud

Packaging & Bundle

Kingston has a distinct packaging style for its higher-end offering and the HyperX Cloud is a combination of the company’s white and black packaging variant. The large box shows the product shot with minimal marketing. The back highlights a few key highlights but is otherwise also devoid of marketing texts.

Inside the packaging is another box with a large silver print of the HyperX logo and product name.

Lifting the top off, we are greeted by a message welcoming the buyer to the HyperX team. Hmmm I wonder which gaming brand does that also. The main contents of the packaged are well-protected by foam and the other accessories are kept in place via a cardboard bracket below.

The package contains a fat bundle of cable accessories, in-line remote extension, a carrying pouch, detachable microphone and even replacement foam pads.

Here are the various splitters upclose. You have a straight extension cable, an inline remote extension, a phone jack Y-cable splitter, and a hard plug splitter.

The inline remote has a volume wheel and mic mute button.

The carrying pouch provided is large enough to house all the accessories. A tight fit if you include the extra pads but can still carry all. Great touch here.

HyperX Cloud Headset

The HyperX Cloud gaming headset are full-sized headphones hovering in the medium-sized category of this segment. The entire frame is clad in black with some red accents to break-up the otherwise monochromatic paint scheme.

Kingston and QPAD did a great job on the construction of the HyperX Cloud. Full aluminum headband and solid cups give the HyperX Cloud a solid, quality feel while the memory foam lining the cups and headband add a premium touch to the professional looking headset. The band is so sturdy you can flex it without and any creaking and stressing anywhere.

The HypeX logo is subtly embroidered in the headband making sure that it won’t fade like the screen-printed approach others utilize.

The microphone port is found on the left earcup with port covered by a rubber stub labeled “QPAD” denoting its origin. The stub is removable and should be kept for reuse. Its not loose but due to its size, it can easily be lost.

The detachable mirophone locks in place and the flexible boom allows the user to adjust the microphone to suit their style. The built look gives the HyperX Cloud a vintage, aviation feel.

The metal headband can expand up to 5 notches per cup and can accommodate very large heads (Mandark large lol)

Instead of internal wiring, the HyperX Cloud routes wiring externally via the headband then to the earcups to prevent internal tearing when stretching and bending.

User Experience & Conclusion

Listening & Audio

I have never heard of QPAD until the CES reveal of the HYPERX Cloud. That said, I am not familiar with their house sound. Prior to test, the HyperX Cloud was burned in for 24 hours before firing up my favorite lossless tracks. At first listen, the HyperX Cloud has a veiled feel to it even with the almost perfect seal of the pads giving it some excellent isolation. The lower frequencies are very pronounced with tight, controlled bass with mids being alright and highs getting tinny when upping the gain. Rock and hiphop tracks go well with the HyperX Cloud but acoustics and vocal tracks aren’t rendered very well. This is quite indicative of entry-level gaming headsets and is quite acceptable for this range. So, let’s move on to gaming…

Gaming

Firing up Battlefield 4, a game with good positional audio rendering, we take the HyperX Cloud headset for a good, long session. As mentioned above, the HyperX Cloud excels well delivering bass audio like explosions and muffled footsteps. Gunfire though and radio comms just crap out hissing out on the top-end of the Cloud’s range. The microphone is excellent though, clear and quiet.

Comfort

After a solid 5-6 hours of gaming, the HyperX Cloud didn’t give any neck strain nor fatigue. The ear pads were also quite cool and didn’t induce profuse sweating and discomfort on my cheeks even on a 33*C afternoon. Props to QPAD and Kingston for the choice of foam and overall excellent build quality.

Final Thoughts

This isn’t Kingston’s first venture in the peripheral market, having had a HyperX Siberia edition in the past. Nevertheless, that was marketed as a SteelSeries product but one thing is for sure, Kingston has its sight set in the professional gaming market.

The Kingston HyperX Cloud, is the company’s latest bid in this attempt. A co-branded QPAD design, the HyperX Cloud gaming headset is a solid piece of kit. Sturdy, durable and very comfortable, it is made for long-term gaming sessions. Be warned though, these are not multi-purpose headsets. They are designed and aimed solely for gaming so if you are an audiophile or music aficionado, these aren’t for you. The audio quality is distinctively entry level and could use some work.

The Kingston HyperX Cloud Gaming Headset is made to take on the rough and tumble of the fast-paced lives of hardcore gamers.

Due for release this April, the HyperX Cloud gaming headset is estimate to retail for $99 making it a highly-competitive pair of cans against the plastic offerings of mainstream gaming brands.

The Kingston HyperX Cloud is backed by a 2-year warranty. We give the HyperX Cloud Gaming Headset our B2G Bronze Award for its supreme quality and comfort.

B2G_Bronze


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13 Comments

    1. Its gonna be out in a few weeks hopefully. Its a great headset but as an audiophile, its a bit lacking for my personal taste… but that’s because I have very high standards.

  1. What about the foam at the earphones? I’m concerned that these types of foams eventually flake off due to age. I’ve had several expensive earphones with the exact same material so I’m not too keen on this one either.

    1. They all do eventually. Sweat does that. These pads though seem pretty high quality so these won’t crack and flake after a month. I’ve had headphones in the 10-16k Php mark that had very bad leatherette pads.

        1. Those things got extinct because a lot of people kept complaining about irritation and them being hot, I for one have no problem with the older Sony headphones. So yes, basically leatherette became the choice because its a) cheap and b) irritates fewer people’s skin.

          1. And it cracks in a few months, which means you leave them at home when it happens–unless you don’t mind leaving copious traces of black flakes around your ears in public. :p

            They’re also pretty hot around the ears so wearing them for long periods can be uncomfortable.

            Got any recommendations on what earphones I should get, considering my peeve over these leatherette thingamajigs?

            1. Best you can do is to take care of them. The primary cause of cracking and flaking is the leatherette becomes too dry. To prevent that, you need leather cleaner and conditioner.

              Another way is to make sure the brand you’re buying also sells replacement pads. They are quite cheap when available. Even brands like Razer who tend to overprice things have relatively cheap replacement foam pads.

          2. Didn’t know these things were fussy. Leather cleaner/conditioner for earphones? Jeez. Maybe I’ll stick to those they stick in your ear. Thanks for the tip though! :D I’ll buy a cleaner and/or conditioner if I ever do get around to using leatherette earphones.

            1. If you’re like me that invest in a ton of audio equipment, you need to take care of them. But yes, I would suggest in-ear models if you really need to go outdoors. I use a pair of A-Jays Two and they far superior to most that I have tried in the same price range.

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