15 Best Audiophile Headphones for Gaming

Best Audiophile Headphones for Gaming

Amazon

Finding the right headphones for gaming doesn’t have to be hard. Once you know who the best brands are and why they’re so revered, the choice is a lot easier to work out. So if you’re after the best audiophile headphones for gaming, read on to find your new favorite set of cans.

Also of Interest: Best Gaming Headphones Without a Mic

Ultrasone Performance 880 review Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Exceptional soundstage
  • Sounds have the space needed to move
  • Looks premium
Price: $499.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Audeze Mobius Premium 3D Gaming Headset Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Amazing audio quality
  • The best headphones for gaming available
  • 3D tech is mind-blowing
Price: $399.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Audeze Penrose Amazon Customer Reviews
  • A level of audio quality you need to hear to believe
  • Fantastic detachable mic
  • Cutting-edge drivers
Price: $299.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Puro Sound Labs: PuroPro Hybrid Active Noise Cancelling Volume Limiting Headphones Amazon Customer Reviews
  • ANC is excellent
  • 30 hours on one charge
  • Protects your hearing
Price: $199.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
HyperX Cloud II Gaming Headset gifts for computer geeks Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great value
  • Good audio quality and mic
  • Durable
Price: $76.38 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Sennheiser HD 660 S Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Good lows, mids, and highs
  • Open-back design is great for clearer sound
  • Sennheiser is one of the best when it comes to headphones
Price: $387.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
SteelSeries Arctis Pro + GameDAC Amazon Customer Reviews
  • GameDAC is a genius piece of kit
  • Brilliant, customizable audio and mic
  • Really, really comfortable
Price: $249.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Audeze LCD-1 Audiophile Headphones Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Game-changing audiophile quality
  • Lightweight and super comfortable
  • Very little distortion
Price: $369.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Razer BlackShark V2 Gaming Headset Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great value
  • Comes with its own DAC
  • Clear audio and mic
Price: $99.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Sony MDRZ1R Signature Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Killer sound
  • High-powered tech under the hood
  • Gorgeous design
Price: $1,699.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Razer Nari Essential Wireless Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great value
  • Clean audio and great mic
  • Really comfortable
Price: $69.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Meze 99 Classics Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great, even sound
  • Super stylish
  • Warm bass
Price: $309.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
JLab Play Gaming Wireless Earbuds Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Super affordable
  • Easier to store
  • Decent audio quality
Price: $39.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Shure SE215-CL Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great value for the price
  • Easy to pack away after a session
  • Punchy sound
Price: $99.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Logitech G PRO Gaming Headset for Oculus Quest 2 Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Designed for use with Oculus Quest 2
  • Decent quality audio
  • Super stylish
Price: $99.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. Ultrasone Performance 880 Headphones | Best Headphones for Gaming

    Pros:
    • Exceptional soundstage
    • Sounds have the space needed to move
    • Looks premium
    Cons:
    • Takes a minute to adjust to the fit
    • Mobile adaptor is okay
    • Pricey

    The Ultrasone Performance 880 Headphones are an oddity, in a good way. 

    Open-back headphones offer a more natural sound. Rather than pushing every piece of sound into the ear (known as a closed-back design), open-backs allow soundwaves to mix with the air, resulting in a sound as close to the original as possible.

    The Performace 880 is a closed-back set of headphones that manages to create a soundstage on par with open-back designs, resulting in a soundstage that has the space to permeate. 

    It’s also worth noting Ultrasone’s S-Logic Plus technology, which locates and amplifies instruments with surgical precision. Custom tech is always the difference-maker when it comes to headphones, and especially when it comes to gaming. The S-Logic Plus is the industry-leading tech that really helps to isolate each individual sound and make it truly pop. 

    It translates to gaming effortlessly. You’ll feel each footstep or bullet whizzing past you with an expert precision only Ultrasone can pull off. 

  2. 2. Audeze Mobius Premium 3D Gaming Headset – PC | Best Headset for PC Gaming

    Pros:
    • Amazing audio quality
    • The best headphones for gaming available right now
    • 3D tech is mind-blowing
    • Mic is very clear
    • USB-C charging
    Cons:
    • AUX cable it pointless
    • Very occasional clicking noise from the drivers
    • Doesn't work on PlayStation or Xbox

    The Audeze Mobius is the industry standard when it comes to the best audiophile headphones for gaming. There are no better headphones or headsets out there. 

    It’s the  Planar Magnetic drivers that make this thing so unreal. The spatial awareness is second to none. With 3D audio turned on, you will be able to pinpoint where bullets or footsteps are coming from. Seriously, even if you don’t play Fortnite, download it when you get the Audeze Mobius just to test it out. You won’t regret it. 

    Audeze has a background in headphones and brings what they know into the gaming space with surgical precision. As much as I love the LCD-1 headphones, as a gamer, the Audeze Mobius is the better pick. Even if you don’t plan on using the mic (which is phenomenal), the headset is worth it purely as a pair of headphones. 

    There are some minor complaints, but none of them are a deal-breaker for me. The AUX cable feels super cheap, and using it causes a drop in quality. This is a wireless headset first, though, and needs to be powered on to even work with the cable. 

    Mobius isn’t the most comfortable headset in the world, too. That said, the Audeze Penrose, which is essentially the same headset, has become my go-to for gaming and I’ve adjusted to it without any problems. 

    You may also get very rare ‘clicks’ from the magnetic drivers. That’s not an issue, but given the cost, I’d rather give you all the info so you know what’s what. 

    So, let’s talk cost. There’s no getting around the fact the Audeze Mobius is pricey. Where Audeze differs from other companies, however, is that Mobius justifies the cost. It’s high-end tech and the end result is a headset you’re going to be blown away by. Mobius sets the bar so high that I can’t imagine ever needing to buy another headset any time soon. 

  3. 3. Audeze Penrose / Penrose X – PS4, PS5 / Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S | Best Headset for Console Gaming

    Pros:
    • A level of audio quality you need to hear to believe
    • Fantastic detachable mic
    • Cutting-edge drivers
    • Can work on both mobile and console at the same time
    Cons:
    • Very occasional clicking noise from the drivers
    • Pricey
    • AUX cable is not great

    Given how much I love the Audeze Mobius, as the Penrose and Penrose X are essentially the same headset, it’s no surprise they’re the best out there. 

    The Penrose headset makes use of Audeze’s killer magnetic planar drivers. While that doesn’t mean much to most, the short version is the audio quality is on another level. Play Fortnite, seriously. You’ll be able to instantly notice the difference. Plus being able to hear where footsteps are coming from or the direction bullets are shot from gives you a huge edge. 

    Failing that, definitely try Resident Evil Village with the Penrose on. It transforms the game into something you’ll never forget. I still haven’t recovered…

    As with the Mobius, you will get the occasional clicks from the magnetic drivers, but it’s rare and not an issue. You also get an AUX cable which is utterly pointless and cheap-feeling. And as the headset needs to be powered to use the cable, it’ll live in the box forever. Again, not a major issue, but it’s my job to give you the facts. 

    Sure, the Penrose and Penrose X are pricey. You can’t sugarcoat that. But, they’re so high-end, they justify the cost and then some. You will not need another headset after you’ve picked these bad boys up. 

     

  4. 4. PuroPro Hybrid Volume Limiting Headphones | Best Budget Headphones for Gaming

    Pros:
    • ANC is excellent
    • 30 hours on one charge
    • Protects your hearing
    • Sounds layers feel isolated
    Cons:
    • Not USB-C
    • Not ideal for bass
    • Won't work on Xbox/PlayStation

    The biggest compliment I have for the PuroPro Hybrid Headphones is they’re the headphones I have on right now as I’m writing this. 

    Before we hop into why they’re so great, one thing to note: If it’s for gaming, you won’t be able to sync these headphones with any of the Xbox or PlayStation family of consoles. This is purely for PC first. 

    Now, I know a lot of audiophiles will turn their noses up at the term ‘volume limiting’. Puro as a company is all about protecting hearing while still creating a product that excels where it should. The other thing to keep in mind, and this is important, the PuroPro headphones are plenty loud. ‘Volume-limiting’ doesn’t mean quiet. All it means is you’ll have a harder time damaging your ears. 

    The PuroPro gets so much right as well. Sound is accurate, the battery lasts a huge 30 hours (take that, Apple), buttons are easy to find, the active noise cancelation (ANC) is excellent, and they’re pretty comfortable. 

    Sure, they may lack the name-brand power of some of the heavy hitters, and you’re limited in where you can use it to game, but if you’re a PC player, the PuroPro is sure to be your new favorite headphones. 

  5. 5. HyperX Cloud II – PC, PS4, Xbox One | Best Budget Headset for Gaming

    Pros:
    • Great value given the low price
    • Good audio quality and mic
    • Durable
    • Active noise cancellation is great
    Cons:
    • Won't match the quality of the more luxury headsets or headphones
    • Red and black is a little emo
    • Your ears will be a little warm

    If you’re after a high-quality budget headset, the HyperX Cloud II is where it’s at.

    7.1 Surround Sound married to a durable aluminum frame make this cheaper option feel much more luxurious than it has any right to. 

    The thing is, not everyone wants to pay a bomb for a good set of headphones. Of course, there’s going to be a drop in quality when you spend less, but ‘cheaper’ doesn’t mean ‘cheap’. HyperX knows how to make premium products, and the quality of the Cloud II is excellent. 

    It won’t rival the SteelSeries or Audezes of this world, but for someone who wants to up their game, you won’t go wrong with HyperX. 

  6. 6. Sennheiser HD 660 S

    Pros:
    • Good lows, mids, and highs
    • Open-back design is great for clearer sound
    • Sennheiser is one of the best when it comes to headphones
    Cons:
    • Not great for traveling due to their size
    • Sound leakage
    • Bass could be stronger

    Sennheiser knows headphones. If you want to avoid technical specifications and just go with a company that always hits it out of the park, Sennheiser is always a safe bet. 

    The Sennheiser HD 660 S are, unsurprisingly, brilliant. The open-back design helps with creating a natural sound that’s as close to the original as is possible, and is capable of reproducing hi-res audio. 

    Bass lacks a little, which for me is great news, but people who want thumping bass, may feel a little letdown. Although I would argue for gaming bass isn’t all that important. So long as the Sennheiser HD 660 S can render sounds at low, mid, and high, you’re good.

    One thing no one can agree on is whether Sennheiser headphones are the best or worst looking headphones out there. Personally, I couldn’t care less about how they look. All I care about is the soundstage, which is one area Sennheiser never fails. 

  7. 7. SteelSeries Arctis Pro – PS4/PS5

    Pros:
    • GameDAC is a genius piece of kit
    • Brilliant, customizable audio and mic
    • Really, really comfortable
    • Cheaper alternative to Audeze's Penrose
    Cons:
    • GameDAC plugs in to the console, not the controller
    • Won't work on Xbox
    • Still pricey

    The brilliance of the SteelSeries Arctis Pro cannot be understated. The included GameDAC is pure genius.

    Hooking up a pair of headphones or a headset via the standard port in the controller means you’re limited in terms of clarity. The GameDAC circumvents this issue by plugging in directly to the console via USB. 

    The result? Crisp audio with a useful control center to customize the audio to your liking.

    The Arctis Pro is hi-res certified, too. That’s how powerful this beast is. 

    There is, of course, the issue of needing to run a cable from the console to wherever you’re sitting. If you’re playing in a living room and have kids jetting around, it’s an issue. If you don’t have kids, you’ll be fine, though. 

  8. 8. Audeze LCD-1 Audiophile Headphones

    Pros:
    • Game-changing audiophile quality
    • Lightweight and super comfortable
    • Very little distortion
    Cons:
    • Sound leakage
    • Cable needs to reach both cups
    • No built-in controls

    Never underestimate the power of Audeze’s 90mm planar magnetic drivers. They are, in a word, a game-changer. 

    The Audeze LCD-1 Audiophile Headphones‘ biggest selling point are those drivers. They allow low sounds to burst through without feeling washed out or overpowered, which is how the best audiophile headphones for gaming should be. Balance at all levels is everything. 

    During my testing, I was blasting different songs at full volume (don’t do this) and the lack of distortion at higher listening levels is unparalleled. Sounds and music surround the wearer and remains clean and crisp throughout. It’s one of those things you need to experience yourself to truly appreciate just how solid the Audeze LCD-1 headphones are. 

    Of course, due to the open-back design, the headphones do produce a fair bit of sound leakage. That’s not an issue for the person using them, but if you’re using them around others, they may have a few choice words.

    The only other downside is the AUX cable goes to both earcups. That’s understandable as both cups require power, but it can occasionally get in the way. 

  9. 9. Razer BlackShark V2 Gaming Headset – PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Mobile

    Pros:
    • Great value
    • Comes with its own DAC
    • Clear audio and mic
    Cons:
    • Looks very 'gamer headset'
    • Audio quality isn't on-par with Audeze or SteelSeries
    • DAC will need to connect via USB

    If there’s one thing Razer always gets right it’s comfort, and the Razer BlackShark V2 Gaming Headset is no different. 

    On the audio quality side of things, we’ve got 50mm drivers to deliver 7.1 spatial awareness surround sound. 

    The audio cable allows this headset to connect to controllers, while the USB DAC – like the SteelSeries Arctis Pro – offers up clearer sound via bypassing the in-built controller audio jack and connecting directly into the console itself. 

    Going back to the comfort, each ear cushion features a cooling gel to help keep your ears cooler during longer sessions.

    Razer is a popular brand for a reason. The company’s headsets are always good. While they don’t reach the same heights as SteelSeries or Audeze, Razer’s headsets always offer great value at a low price point. If you’re not looking to drop a bomb on a new headset, Razer is the way to go. 

  10. 10. Sony MDR-Z1R WW2

    Pros:
    • Killer sound
    • High-powered tech under the hood
    • Gorgeous design
    Cons:
    • Really, really pricey
    • Hard to justify the cost against other killer headphones on here
    • Price needs to be mentioned twice

    Granted the price may put most people off. That said, if we’re talking about the best audiophile headphones for gaming, there’s no way we couldn’t mention the exquisite Sony MDR-Z1R WW2

    These are some hi-res compatible headphones, which means they’re capable of reproducing sound frequencies up to 120hz. Of course, not many people can physically hear that level of sound, but it is a good measurement for flaunting how powerful these headphones are. If you’re after the clearest sound, the Sony MDR-Z1R WW2 is where it’s at. 

    Along with such terms as “70mm HD driver”, “Magnesium dome,” and “Liquid Crystal Polymer edge,” the Sony MDR-Z1R also boasts an acoustic filter to combat air resistance in a bid to remove reverb produced from driver movement.

    That’s a lot of tech-speak, but the short version is these are some killer headphones that do justify the absurd price tag. They’re not for everyone, but if you’re a die-hard audiophile with the money spare, they’re a top-notch life-long investment. 

  11. 11. Razer Nari Essential Wireless – PC, PS4, PS5

    Pros:
    • Great value
    • Clean audio and great mic
    • Really comfortable
    • THX audio support
    Cons:
    • Only works on PC, PS4, PS5
    • 7.1 only works on PC
    • Headband is great, but not as tight as other headsets

    Let me tell you, every headset or headphones should feature auto-adjustable headbands. None of this pulling the cups downward nonsense. Just put the headset on, and it’ll fit. Genius. 

    The Razer Nari Essential Wireless is another headset with a lower price point that offers up exceptional value for money. 

    As with the other Razer headset on this guide, the Nari also features THX Spatial Audio, so if you want to know where you’re getting blasted from, you’ll be able to work it out easily. 

    For the money, this headset offers up clean audio, a brilliant mic, and the most comfortable headset around. 

  12. 12. Meze 99 Classics

    Pros:
    • Great, even sound
    • Super stylish
    • Warm bass
    Cons:
    • Pricey
    • Style won't be for everyone
    • Could have a little more 'umph'

    If you’re after an even-sounding set of headphones for gaming, the Meze 99 Classics is well worth checking out. 

    The first thing you’ll notice about the Meze 99 Classics is the frankly ridiculous look. There’s a certain look when it comes to headphones that companies always seem to iterate on. With Meze, they’re thrown the rulebook out in favor of something much more high-end. And yes, that’s real wood you can see on the ear cups. 

    What’s wild is despite the more skeletal look, these things are deceptively sturdy. And because we’ve got an auto-adjusting headband, these things will be as comfortable as they come. 

    Meze may not be many folks’ first choice when it comes to headphones, but given how level the sound quality is in the Meze 99 Classics, they’re perfect for gaming.  

     

  13. 13. JLab Play Gaming Wireless Earbuds – Switch, Mobile, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S

    Pros:
    • Super affordable
    • Easier to store
    • Decent audio quality
    Cons:
    • Generic design
    • 11 hours per charge is enough, just about
    • Decent audio quality

    If you’re after something super affordable that’s easy to pack away, check out the JLab Play Gaming Wireless Earbuds

    JLab has made a name for itself by making low-cost, high-quality products. Sure, don’t expect groundbreaking tech or brain-melting bass, but these kinds of headphones have their place. Especially if your kids are anything like mine and you don’t wanna drop big money on headphones. 

    The JLab Play headphones feature a built-in mic, audio controls, and last up to 11 hours per charge, which isn’t much, but for the cost is perfectly acceptable. 

  14. 14. Shure SE215-CL

    Pros:
    • Great value for the price
    • Easy to pack away after a session
    • Punchy sound
    Cons:
    • Lacks a punch
    • Earphones aren't as rich as headphones
    • Transparent design isn't for everyone

    I’m always going to recommend headphones over earphones, simply because audio is normally always better in headphones. Larger drivers mostly mean better quality. 

    The Shure SE215-CL are perfect if you’re after something affordable that’s easy to pack away. 

    In terms of sound, of course you won’t be getting Sennheiser or Sony levels of quality, but that’s to be expected at this price point. For the price, you’ll be getting a solid soundstage with a decent bass kick. The tops of highs may feel a little flat, but that shouldn’t impact gaming audio too much. 

    If you are after top-of-line earcups, you could always check out the Shure SE846-CL. Just keep in mind, those ones match high-quality with a price tag to match.  

     

  15. 15. Logitech G PRO Gaming Headset for Oculus Quest 2

    Pros:
    • Designed for use with Oculus Quest 2
    • Decent quality audio
    • Super stylish
    Cons:
    • Razer owns this price bracket
    • Better options out there for non-Oculus usage
    • Average audio

    If you’re after a set of headphones for Oculus Quest 2, go with the Logitech G PRO Gaming Headset

    This headset has been designed to fit over the Oculus Quest 2, and in a big twist for Logitech, the quality is decent. 

    What the G Pro absolutely nails is the look. It is modern, sleek, and the stitching along the headband is particularly impressive. 

    I would only recommend this purely for Oculus Quest 2 users – for everyone else, there are better options out there – but if that’s you, for the price you can’t go wrong. 

Choosing Closed-Back or Open-Back

Headphones are, generally, broken down into two types: Closed-back and open-back. 

Without getting into loads of technical details, the rough difference between the two types is airflow. 

Open-back headphones allow air in, which gives soundwaves the space to move around and permeate further. This results in a more natural sound. You can compare it to a pair of high-end speakers - you hear the music as it comes out and moves around the room. 

The downside of open-back headphones, however, is that they aren't good at blocking out unwanted noise. If you've got kids or you're outside with headphones hooked up to a mobile device, you're going to be able to hear your surroundings. You'll also get a fair amount of sound leakage from open-backs, too. 

The above isn't a deal-breaker for a lot of people by any means. For me, and I mean this is just my personal preference, I'm not a fan of hearing traffic when I'm trying to vibe. If I'm indoors and there are no distractions, though, that's where open-backs are optimal. 

Closed-back headphones, on the other hand, block out unwanted sound and pump audio straight into the ear. Combine closed-backs with a solid active noise cancellation (ANC) tech and all those unwanted sounds will (mostly) disappear. 

Of course, closed-backs offer a different type of listening experience compared with the open-back design. Music doesn't feel as spacious, but it's easier to focus on individual sounds because of the way the audio travels straight from the drivers through the ear. 

Sound leakage is also considerably reduced in closed-backs. 

Open-back VS Closed-back: Which Is Better?

Honestly, there isn't a better. Get a low-cost set of open-backs and the closed will win, and vice-versa. You'll also struggle to get a definitive answer online because it's all down to personal preference and what you need the headphones for. 

If it's music at home with no interruptions, open-back is a solid choice. If it's for commuting, closed-backs are going to help isolate audio. 

It's the same logic for gaming. Open-back at home, closed-back if you're trying to block out noise - be it kids at home or playing a Switch or mobile device while commuting. 

Personally, closed-backs offer an all-around solution. They're great at home and even better outdoors, whereas open-backs will suffer in the outside world. 

All that said, the most important factor in picking a pair of headphones for gaming or music is to go with quality. The closed and open-back argument is irrelevant if you're going to pick up a pair of $20 headphones that struggle to relay sound. Quality, and a trusted brand that has proven experience, and opinions from people who've tested the products they're talking about (many sites test and review a lot of the products we recommend), will always lead you to something worth shelling out on. 

Again, quality trumps everything. 

See Also: 

Best Headsets for PS5

Best High-end Headphones

Best High-end Gaming Headsets

Disclaimer: Heavy Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and other affiliate advertising programs and may receive a commission if you purchase a product via a link on this page.

Read More
,