Missed the GamesBeat Summit excitement? Don't worry! Tune in now to catch all of the live and virtual sessions here.
Computer component company Kingston started its HyperX gaming brand years ago, and it has earned a reputation for building great peripherals like its Cloud headsets. But as great as the HyperX Cloud Flight, Cloud Stinger, and Cloud Alpha all are, none of them would work well as your daily headphones.
HyperX is now attempting to change that with its new Cloud Mix headset. This $200 device is available now. It comes with everything you need to use it as your dedicated gaming headset. But then it can effortlessly transform into Bluetooth Wireless headphones for your commute into the office.
So while HyperX’s headsets have focused almost exclusively on gaming up to this point, it is now bringing its expertise to a much wider audience.
What you’ll like
A part of me is always waiting to see if HyperX is going to sacrifice sound to reach some specific market segment. But each new devices sounds at least as good as the last, and the Mix sounds better in many ways.
Most notably, the Cloud Mix has strong bass that gives gaming a sense of theatricality that you want from a high-end audio device. It doesn’t match the Logitech G922 for bass (nothing does), but it has more than enough for most situations.
Across the rest of the spectrum, the Mix strikes an ideal balance. The midrange has richness to it that brings life to most scenes. And the high elements of gun shots and foot steps never cause the Mix to strain or lose clarity.
Understated look with brilliant design and comfort
You can tell that HyperX wants you to wear the Mix out of the house. It has streamlined both the look and functionality of the device.
Aesthetically, the Mix looks almost professional. It has an all-black design that includes even the aluminum chassis. The only splash of color, if you can call it that, is a silver-gray HyperX logo on the ear cups. So you can wear it proudly around the house, at the airport, or in the office.
As for its design, HyperX has put all of the controls on the headphones themselves. This enables you to adjust the volume, play/pause, and connect to various devices via Bluetooth. The buttons are all easy to find, and the power button is hidden well enough that you won’t accidentally hit it when you’re trying to turn down the volume.
And, of course, it is super comfortable. HyperX has always nailed this aspect of its headphones, and the Mix maintains that legacy. It is light and stable. You can wear it all day without noticing it. That’s because it is just 260 grams, and also because it won’t shake loose from your head.
Versatile enough for every occasion
But what really makes the Cloud Mix such a great all-around headset is that it comes with all of the connectivity options that you should need. In the box, HyperX ships you a 3.5mm audio cable. That plugs into the headphone jack on the Mix. But you can also go wireless using the Bluetooth 4.2 radio. This enables you to use the headset with any console or PC that has Bluetooth or any smartphone.
Because of this, I’ve used it as my daily driver. I’ve listened to podcasts while doing chores and to music while doing work. And because of its look and design, I’ve had no issues taking it from one setting to another. It also has a built-in microphone so you can still answer calls even while using the headset without its included boom microphone.
What you won’t like
You have to keep track of the mic
Speaking of the microphone, I wish HyperX would get into the retractable-mic game. I’m glad it has a built-in mic in addition to its port for a separate boom mic, but I hate having to track down that accessory when it’s time to game.
Let in a bit too much noise for extremely loud environments
The Cloud Mix does not feature any noise-cancelling. That’s not a knock against it except for that some people might want it when spending $200. In most circumstances, you won’t need it. But on a loud plane or similar environment, enough noise leaks in that you may have to compensate by turning up the volume. If you travel a lot, you may want to consider noise-cancelling headphones instead. There are many in a similar price range.
The HyperX Cloud Mix is an excellent pair of headphones. For the first time, they combine HyperX’s excellent sound and comfort with an all-around personal audio device. If you want one pair of headphones to do everything, including work wirelessly with your iPhone XS or your Pixel 3, you could do a lot worse. I’d also recommend it over getting dedicated headphones for gaming and for listening to music. Going the Mix route will save you money and will match the audio quality of similarly priced headphones in either category.
HyperX Cloud Mix is available now for $200. HyperX provided a sample to GamesBeat for the purpose of this review.
GamesBeat's creed when covering the game industry is "where passion meets business." What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you -- not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. Discover our Briefings.