HyperX Cloud Stinger Headset Review
Hot on the heels of the excellent HyperX Alloy FPS we have HyperX’s latest Headset the HyperX Cloud Stinger. This latest headset from HyperX is a stereo circumaural headset with 50mm Drivers and a closed back design. The Cloud Stinger features a swivel style boom microphone with automatic microphone mute and a dedicated volume control. The Headset itself weighs in at 275g, is equipped with a captive 1.3m cable and comes with an additional 1.7m extension cable.
The HyperX Cloud Stinger arrived at pcG in a smart looking black/red box with a large image of the Headset on the front. Other than the brand, product name HyperX highlights that the Cloud Stinger is compatible with PC, Xbox One, PS4, Wii U, Mac and Mobile. In addition to this we see that the Cloud Stinger features ‘Signature Memory Foam & Premium Leatherette’, an ‘Adjustable Steel Slider’ and a ‘Swivel to Mute Mic’. The headset is also certified by Teamspeak and Discord.
Looking at the back of the box we see another image of the Cloud Stinger highlighting the following: Adjustable Slider, 90 Rotating Ear Cup, 50mm Directional Drivers, Intuitive Volume On Headset Ear Cup, Swivel To Mute Noise Cancelling Mic, HyperX Signature Memory Foam. Here we can also see additional supported VOIP software listed as well as the two year warranty.
As you can see from the image above inside the outer sleeve we find a simple black box. Within the box we can see that the HyperX Cloud Stinger Headset is nicely packaged and presented. Atop the box we find a Quick Start Guide and a HyperX products guide resting on top of a foam cover that protects the Headset beneath.
Removing the top foam cover allows us to see the Cloud Stinger Headset itself and nicely packaged it is too, nesting securely within soft foam. Beneath the soft foam we find the additional 1.7m extension cable.
At the time of writing the HyperX Cloud Stinger headset is available from Overclockers UK for approximately £55 and comes with a 2 year warranty.
courtesy of HyperX
Driver: Dynamic, 50mm with neodymium magnets
Type: Circumaural, Closed back
Frequency response: 8Hz-23,000Hz
Impedance: 30 Ω
Sound pressure level: 102 ± 3dBSPL/mW at 1kHz
T.H.D.: < 2%
Input power: Rated 30mW, Maximum 500mW
Cable length and type: Headset (1.3m) + Extension Y-cable(1.7m)
Connection: Headset – 3.5mm plug (4 pole) + extension cable – 3.5mm stereo and mic plugs
Element: Electret condenser microphone
Polar pattern: Uni-directional, Noise-canceling
Frequency response: 50Hz~18,000Hz
Sensitivity: -40 dBV (0dB=1V/Pa,1kHz)
First impressions of the HyperX Cloud Stinger are really quite impressive, it’s a good looking headset and appears to be well made, the plastic looks and feels a little cheap but to be fair it is in keeping with the £55 price point. Let’s take a closer look…
Each ear up is effectively the same featuring both swivel and tilt allowing the ear cup to seal well against the side of the head. As I’ve already mentioned the HyperX Cloud Stinger features a circumaural (over ear) design with a closed back. The latter ensures that very little sound escapes so not to bother the neighbours. The left ear cup features a swivel style boom microphone with noise cancelling technology. The microphone boom has an auto on/off feature with the microphone off when in the up position, a very handy and clever feature in my opinion. The boom itself is of the flexible variety but it does seem to have a tendency of its own.
The right ear cup is the same, obviously without the microphone. Here we also find an integrated volume control but more on this later.
The top of the headband is made from plastic and features a smart HyperX logo. The inner part of the headband is made from sprung steel and should therefore retain its shape and also not snap, a problem common with plastic headbands.
The inner part of the headband features a single large foam pad that is approximately 10mm (at the centre) in depth. Initial impressions suggest that the headband has a good level of comfort also helped by the relative low weight of 275g.
As I mentioned earlier the right ear cup features an integrated volume control. The control is both smooth in operation and free from interference. It’s also easy to find and operate when in Game and I’m overall impressed with its integration into the design.
Each ear cup features large memory foam ear cushions that again seem to provide plenty of comfort. They are made from leatherette (fake leather), with the inner part that protects your ear from the Driver being covered in a simple yet soft black fabric.
The HyperX Cloud Stinger is fully adjustable with each side supporting approximately 36mm of travel. As the headset is quite large to start with this ensure those with a large head are fully catered for. But those with a small head and or children may find it too big…
Hardware Installation/Testing Methodology/Setup
The following Games were also used during testing:
- Metro Last Light (benchmark)
- Unigine Heaven (benchmark)
The performance of a Headset is predominately based upon what it sounds like, therefore what we have here is my opinion on what I think about the audio performance of the HyperX Cloud Stinger headset; of course this is somewhat subjective…
First let’s talk about my favourite headset, yes that’s right the one I use personally for Gaming, why? Well because it’s made by HyperX, that’s why! The HyperX Cloud is as far as I’m concerned the best Headset on the market, simply because it offers great sound quality, great comfort and a decent feature set all for around £60. The Cloud II that came later was its lesser in my opinion as it muddied the waters with its Virtual 7.1 surround sound USB sound card, it was also more expensive.
Well hear (haha) we are with the HyperX Cloud Stinger and at first I have to say I was a little sceptical, as at the time of review its also HyperX’s cheapest Headset. The good news is that as far as I’m concerned the Cloud Stinger is a return to form for HyperX, as not only is the Cloud Stinger good, it’s bloody good, especially for £50.
Let’s first talk about sound quality, although we know that this is somewhat subjective. The audio signature of the Cloud Stinger is very good, especially when paired with a decent source, I used a Creative Sound Blaster Zx card. The audio signature itself is very well suited to Gaming which is perfect as it’s a Gaming headset after all. The bass is strong, but thanks to a solid mid-range it never seems too overpowering. The highs are also very good, with the ability to hear spine tingling bullets and ricochets in the likes of Metro Last Light. In fact I’d have to say that the sound quality is just as good as the original HyperX Cloud and that’s saying something. In fact If I were honest I’d even suggest that it’s a Cloud in disguise…
But what’s really rather shocking is that all of the other features aboard this new Headset are also spot on. The comfort levels are high thanks to the use of memory foam and to a lesser extent the light weight of the headset itself. The microphone mute is automatic and there’s an easy reach volume control on the right ear cup. Both of these features are better than the original Cloud’s somewhat cumbersome in-line control.
So is there anything wrong with the HyperX Cloud Stinger then. Well given its asking price, then I think the fair answer is no. There I’ve said it…
The noise cancelling microphone found attached to the left ear up swivels into position from vertical to horizontal and activates the microphone when in the down position. The boom is flexible but doesn’t really seem to stay where you put it. Luckily this didn’t seem to have any overall negative effect on the microphone’s abilities. Using our VOIP application of choice (Razer Comms) I had no complaints from my online friends, with my voice appearing to be loud and clear at all times.
It would appear that just like the HyperX Alloy FPS keyboard, HyperX have nailed it again, the HyperX Cloud Stinger is so close to perfection it’s worthy of one of our Platinum awards. At just £55 it’s simply as good as you could hope for and better than many Headsets costing much more…
The HyperX Cloud Stinger arrived at pcG in a smart box with the contents well packaged and nicely presented, with the Headset itself nestling within soft foam padding. In the box other than the headset itself there’s simply an extension cable in addition to the usual paperwork.
Initial impresses ions of the Cloud Stinger are good, it’s a good looking headset and appears to be well made. Ok, so the plastics are a little cheap looking/feeling, but it’s still in keeping with the asking price to be fair. One oddity is the fact that the default connection option found at the end of the 1.3m captive cable is for a mobile device. If you want to plug this into your Gaming PC then you’re going to need to use the supplied 1.7m extension also!?
Feature wise the headset also scores well with its 50mm Drivers, auto mute microphone and ear cup based volume control. With the latter two features being particularly welcome. The headset was also found to be most comfortable, even during those longer (4+ hours) Gaming sessions, thanks in part to its low weight of just 275g and the soft memory foam padding used.
But really what should define a Gaming headset more than anything else is what it sounds like. The good news is a that the Cloud Stinger sounds as good as my current favourite headset and that headset is (strangely) HyperX’s own original Cloud. When paired with a decent source the Cloud Stinger simply sounds great with a real Gaming audio signature. What this means is that there’s strong bass, but most importantly it doesn’t come at the expense of the mid-range, which is also strong. In fact all layers can be heard individually, from explosions through to voices down to simple ricochets. Trust me at £55 things don’t get much better than this. Of course it’s not got any of that Virtual Surround Sound malarkey, but it’s worth remembering that most of us have only got two ears after all. The noise cancelling microphone also worked well in VOIP and there was no complaints from me or my online friends.
As you have probably gathered from my ramblings and that Platinum dog tag to the right there, I’m rather impressed with the HyperX Cloud Stinger and that I am. With an asking price of just £55 it simply can’t be beaten in my mind. With great sound, good usable features and that price, HyperX have nailed it. Well done guys, RESPECT!
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Many thanks to HyperX for providing this sample for review