You invested in a home flight simulator, either to use as a flight training aid or just for fun. A great way to improve your experience even further is by using a decent gaming headset!
For those of you already flying real aircraft, we don’t need to convince you of the importance of a quality headset. Just like aviation headsets, gaming headsets come in a wide range of features, quality and prices. Although a gaming headset does not serve quite the same purpose as a regular aviation headset (noise cancellation/suppression is not as much a factor in gaming headsets as with real headsets), other factors such as voice clarity and sound quality or just as, if not even more, important when choosing a gaming headset.
What is a Gaming Headset?
First of all, what is a gaming headset? A gaming headset is a type of headphone that can be used for playing computer games, listening to music or watching movies. Gaming headsets were originally introduced for gamers who wanted richer sound effects than the speakers on their computers could produce and so opted in favor of headphones.
It’s also a great way to not disturb your family, or neighbors with all the different sounds and alarms (let’s hope not too often!) coming from your flight simulator.
What Should you Look for in a Flight Simulator Gaming Headset?
Now, how do you decide which gaming headset is right for you? Which headset will give you the best possible flight simulator experience? There are a few factors your should consider, such as price, quality, comfort, and connections before deciding on the best flight simulator headphones for you.
First and foremost it’s important to consider the price. Gaming headsets come in many different prices, depending on their quality and features, so you need to decide which price range will work for your budget.
For example, if you’re on a budget, there are great gaming headsets available that can be purchased for under $50. But it’s important to remember that the less expensive headphones won’t last as long or offer the same level of sound quality as you would get in more premium models.
As we mentioned above, quality is a factor that will determine the price of the headphones. There’s both the build quality of the product itself, and the sound quality you should consider.
The build quality of the gaming headset is what will determine how durable it is. Is it made of durable materials or just some cheaper plastic? Can you adjust the height and width to get a perfect fit for your head size? Is it water-or shock resistant?
When considering sound quality, some headsets are built with simulated surround sound, so you can hear every little detail in your games. Others have noise-canceling features to block out external sounds and focus on the game audio.
When you are planning on lots of hours of virtual flying, the comfort of the headset might be one of the most important aspects to look for.
Adjustability is important to find out if the headset will fit comfortably over time, and also consider how much weight the material used feels when worn.
Just as with regular aviation headsets, it’s important to make sure they’re compatible with your PC. Most headsets use standard 3.5mm jacks or USB connections, but some are built specifically for a certain console, and might therefore not be compatible with your system.
Your other needs
A last important aspect to consider: are you going to use the headphones purely for gaming, or would you like to use them for other things as well, such as watching movies, listening to music, etc.
If you’re going to use them for other things as well, it might be a good idea to look for more general headphones, instead of gaming headphones. Just make sure they have a built-in microphone if you’re planning on multiplayer flying, streaming or chatting.
The Best Flight Simulator Headphones and Headsets
1. T.Flight U.S. Air Force Edition Gaming Headset
The T.Flight U.S. Air Force Edition gaming headset joins Thrustmaster’s existing range of Flightsim products by the U.S. Air Force (such as the Thrustmaster HOTAS Warthog Flight Stick PC and Thrustmaster HOTAS Warthog Dual Throttles PC).
It was inspired by real aviation headsets and features large memory foam earpad cushions, with a layer of gel to keep the wearer’s head cool — even during long gaming sessions. These components also ensure ultra-effective passive sound isolation. The headband combines imitation leather cushions with a polyketone structure for comfort and durability. The microphone’s volume level can be adjusted directly via the inline controller, for quick and easy access.
The T.Flight gaming headset can be used with PC, Mac, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
2. HyperX Cloud Alpha S – PC Gaming Headset
The HyperX Cloud Alpha S features custom-tuned HyperX virtual 7 1 surround sound. With the included audio control mixer you can activate the surround sound and adjust the game audio and chat balance without having to go into any menus. Bass adjustment sliders have been added to the ear cups so you can personalize your audio.
The Cloud Alpha S still features the dual-chamber driver system which reduces distortion and provides clearer sound, as well as signature HyperX comfort afforded by the memory foam ear cushions which have been upgraded with extra breathable leatherette.
This headset can be plugged in using the 3,5mm jack or USB, and has a detachable microphone that you can unplug when just listening to music.
3. Redragon H510 Zeus Wired Gaming Headset
The Redragon H510 Zeus headset is designed for people who seek core features, superior comfort, and incredible sound in daily using.
- An adjustable headband fits the headset onto the unique shape of your head, while its still frame makes it lightweight to wear and provides durability.
- With quality leatherette ear cushions completely cover over your ears, enjoy superior sound without worrying on the comfort.
- The USB digital signal processing hard outputs consistent high-quality sound with detachable noise-cancelling mic no matter what system you’re using.
4. HyperX Cloud II Gaming Headset
With over 21,000 Amazon reviews and an average rating of 4.4/5, the HyperX Cloud II Gaming Headset is one of the top-rated gaming headsets currently available.
HyperX Cloud II features a newly designed USB sound card audio control box that amplifies audio and voice for an optimal Hi-Fi gaming experience, so you can hear what you’ve been missing. Open up a world of detail other gamers will never know — the rustle of a camper’s boot, the scuttle in a distant vent. This next-generation headset generates virtual 7.1 surround sound with distance and depth to enhance your gaming, movie or music experience. USB surround sound card works only on PC, Mac, and PS4
5. RUNMUS Gaming Headset
The RUNMUS gaming headset, the professional gaming headset for game enthusiasts.
This gaming headset is equipped with a premium 50mm neodymium driver that offers immersive sound quality. It hugely augment immersive aural experience, making you feel like in the real battlefield (or aircraft cockpit!).
Using soft protein ear pads and retractable headband, this Xbox one headset gives customers most comfortable wearing experience. and the weight is only 1 pound. You won’t feel any discomfort even after a long gaming sessions.
With the noise-canceling microphone, this gaming headset provides high clarity sound communication for players and filter most ambient noise at the same time. Every voice command would not be missed with this sensitive microphone.
A few Additional Tips
To conclude this article, there are 2 more tips we’d like to share with you.
A great way to enhance your flight sim experience even more, is by using your own aviation headset. There are some great little adapters available online that allow you to plug your headset into your computer and use it as headphones and mic when flying a simulator. Just Google something like “aviation headset to pc adapter”.
The last tip we’d like to share: if your computer has the option to use multiple audio output channels, it might be a cool idea to take advantage of that by using your speakers for aircraft sounds (engine, alarms, wind,…) and your headphones for ATC or multiplayer chat. That will make everything feel just that little more realistic!
Have fun, and fly safe!
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