We've just written and released our Kingston HyperX Cloud II headset review, but many users have been asking of us - how does it compare to the first edition? With a roughly $30 difference in the price tag and no 7.1 USB surround sound available on this original model, we've put it to the test and will share these results with you now.
The HyperX Cloud was Kingston's first real foray into the audio peripheral market, starting out at the absolute high-end of the 'gaming' spectrum, the offered plush leather ear cups, stitched headband and various features meant that upon release it was staged as one of the best in it's field. Time rolls on, new technology is produced and the Cloud still stands strong. How does it fare against gaming headsets of today and especially, the new and improved Cloud II?
Unlike the Cloud II's offering of a 7.1 surround-sound through a USB-powered device, this model only provides a 3.5mm input for its audio and microphone options, but it does come with an in-line volume and microphone control unit, which also doubles as a massive cable extension.
If you're not interested in this extension or and still want more cable, there's a plain 3.5mm extension cable included. The headset cable is 1m in length, with the extension being listed at 2m, providing you with more room than most other brands. As for further connection options, there's a single 3-ringed adaptor for tablets, phones and Mac devices, alongside the double 3.5mm adaptor.
Hitting the scales at 12.34 ounces (350g), its marginally lighter than the Cloud II. Although there are many lighter options on the market, this headset doesn't seem to weigh you down too badly when in use, likely due to the plush leather headband and ear cups being quite comfortable. As for the ear cups, this device also comes with two different options - a synthetic leather option, or your more traditional cloth covering.
The detachable microphone has its own frequency response of 100 - 12,000 Hz, compared to the Cloud II at 50 -18,000 Hz, alongside nominal impedance of =2.2 kO - which is identical to its younger sibling. The microphone connects to the headset through a simple 3.5mm jack.
As for sound the 53mm drivers offer, you a frequency response of 15Hz - 25,000 Hz and a nominal impedance of 60O per system - being identical to the Cloud II on paper.
Pricing & Availability
This Cloud headset also comes in as a high-end pricing alternative for 'gaming class' peripherals, but much lower than most 'audiophile' headsets - sitting it in a weird limbo of brands, pricing and classification. We found it listed on Amazon at the time of writing for a little under $70.
What's in the box?
Featuring a myriad of different inclusions much like the Cloud II, you can expect to see: interchangeable ear-cups, a dual-3.5mm adaptor, a dual-3.5mm jack to single 3 ring adaptor (for phones and tablets), the extension cable, a removable in-line control box, the detachable microphone and an extremely handy carry pouch. Kingston has certainly ensured that their products come with the full package of options.
The carry pouch is once again a brilliant inclusion. Being large in size and soft in nature, I managed to comfortably fit my Canon EOS 1100D nicely within when travelling to the city, even with the 18-55mm stock lens still attached.
The cloth ear cups are once again a great inclusion. Preferred by many different users, this version ear cups is known for handling sweat much better, alongside providing the possibility for a more 'open-ear' design. One down-side is that sweat will just soak into the cloth and foam, meaning a regular wash is recommended. I prefer the synthetic leather personally as the feel is much nicer on your head (especially for extended sessions). First impressions of this headset shows that the leather ear cushions are a bit more firm than the Cloud, but I'll go over this in detail during the testing process.
PRICING: You can find the HyperX Cloud Gaming Headset for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.
United States: The HyperX Cloud Gaming Headset retails for $67.49 at Amazon.
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