The HyperX Cloud II gaming headset came out six year ago, and offered a solid enough user experience that HyperX has been refining its basic design ever since without wildly changing the look. There have been plenty of Cloud variations, such as the Cloud Mix, Cloud Orbit S, and Cloud Alpha S, but HyperX is finally revisiting the Cloud II—and cutting the cord in the process. The HyperX Cloud II Wireless is a wireless gaming headset available for the same $149.99 price that the wired Cloud II first retailed for in 2015. The headset performs as well as the original Cloud II, but its connection options limit it to PC use.
The Cloud II Wireless looks and feels almost identical to the wired Cloud II, with the standard HyperX design of big, oval-shaped black plastic earcups connected to a padded headband with Y-shaped metal struts. The most obvious visual difference is that the struts are red instead of gunmetal gray, as is the stitching on the headband. The earpads are the same soft memory foam covered in pleasantly supple faux leather, with the same padding found on the headband’s underside. Along with clickable earcup stops, the headset offers a comfortable, snug fit.
A large volume wheel resides on the right earcup’s back edge, while all other controls and connections sit on the left earcup. They include a USB-C port for charging, a connector for the detachable boom microphone, and buttons for power and Bluetooth pairing (with an indicator LED just above them). There’s no 3.5mm connection for wired use; this is a strictly wireless headset.
Without a wired connection option, you can’t use the HyperX Cloud II with the different game consoles’ various connections. On PC, the Cloud II Wireless provides optional 7.1-channel simulated surround sound through HyperX’s Ngenuity software, which also controls other HyperX peripherals like the QuadCast S microphone. The software is pretty barebones compared with Razer and Logitech’s headset control apps; besides toggling the surround sound, you can adjust the mic and headphone volume and toggle mic monitoring. That’s it. There is no EQ, or any advanced mic settings.
The boom microphone is a standard foam-covered capsule on a short, flexible arm, and it works well. Test recordings sounded clean and not remotely muffled or fuzzy. This is a very capable headset microphone for most uses, comparable with Razer’s excellent headset mics. Of course, if you’re serious about streaming or recording, we recommend getting a dedicated USB microphone; a well-designed one will beat any headset boom mic.
If you like listening to music on your computer, the Cloud II Wireless is a strong headset with respectable low frequency response. It handled our bass test track, The Knife’s “Silent Shout,” at maximum (and potentially unsafe) volume levels without a hint of distortion. The deep bass synth notes and drum hits get plenty of power, bordering on head-rattling.
The opening, acoustic guitar plucks in Yes’ “Roundabout” receive nicely founded resonance and robust string texture in the higher frequencies. When the track properly kicks in, the bassline takes center stage, but the other elements can still be easily discerned. Plus, the vocals stand out, and don’t fade into the background. The Crystal Method’s “Busy Child” sounds exciting thanks to a powerful backbeat and synth riffs that get enough high frequency presence to even it out. This is a slightly bass-heavy, well-balanced sound that might not please audiophiles, but it should satisfy most listeners.
No Man’s Sky‘s starship engines sounded full and thunderous while using the Cloud II Wireless. In addition, the equipment’s beeps and whines stood out from the bass, and the game’s ethereal soundtrack proved a satisfying presence in my play sessions. The simulated surround sound enabled good directionality panning in my tests, though it didn’t give a very strong sense of whether noise sources were coming from my front or rear.
While playing Fortnite, I clearly heard footsteps, rustling grass, and floorboard thumps. The directionality came through quite nicely in this game, with the headset’s 7.1-channel simulated surround sound providing solid imaging for the sources of those footsteps. Of course, it’s still a pain to figure out whether that stomping is coming from above or below you when you’re in a building; careful stereo mixing can only go so far.
The HyperX Cloud II Wireless successfully cuts the wired Cloud II’s cord, while keeping its strong performance intact. The headset feels comfortable and looks good, working well for games, voice chat, and music. The HyperX Cloud II’s reasonably priced at $150, but its complete lack of any wired or non-PC connection options limits it to purely deskbound use.
If you want to spend a bit less, the $100 Razer Nari Essential is an Editors’ Choice pick for wireless PC gaming, while the $120 Astro Gaming A20 Gen 2 offers versions that work with PC, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or Xbox Series S/X. The Razer Blackshark V2 Pro is another excellent choice, available for a little more than the Cloud II Wireless; there’s really a wealth of options of wireless gaming headsets priced well below $200.Source