HyperX’s line of gaming peripherals have become some of the most popular among gamers on both PC and console platforms. Their latest offering, the SoloCast, is a desk microphone that takes the company’s established audio technology and puts it into a cheaper, but still impressive package. Though it’s lacking some functionality, the SoloCast is a great option for those who don't require too much out of their microphones.
One way to cast
As the name alludes, HyperX’s SoloCast is the follow up to the QuadCast, which was released back in 2019. The SoloCast is much smaller and less bulkier than the QuadCast, standing at just 5 inches tall. Like the QuadCast, users can either keep the microphone on the stand it comes in, or detach and in use it with a mic arm. When on the stand, the SoloCast is pretty flexible, allowing users to twist and turn it, placing it in a way that’s most convenient to their setup. I preferred to use the SoloCast with my microphone arm, where I could easily adjust it on the fly.
Where as the name “QuadCast” was representative of the microphone’s four recording patterns, “SoloCast” is a reference to the microphone's single recording pattern. The SoloCast is limited to the cardioid pattern, which is designed to best capture sound coming from directly in front of it. You can’t change the setting to recording patterns that capture all-around audio, or two people speaking from opposite directions. That said, if you don’t plan on hosting a podcast or roaming around your room, it won’t be that big of an issue. I like to move around my room a lot as I talk to my friends, and they had a harder time hearing me than when I use my QuadCast.
However, the sound quality on the SoloCast is incredibly crisp. When I used it properly, I was told by my friends on Discord that it rivaled my QuadCast. At nearly $100 less, the SoloCast still delivers high-caliber audio.
Simple and sleek
I love the physical design of the SoloCast. It’s got a small and simple design, and an indicator on the front of it lets you know exactly what angle it should be positioned for proper usage. The USB-C support means setup is practically one step, as the device is ready to use once you plug it in.
HyperX’s QuadCast microphone illuminates a bright red light when activated, making it a bit of an eye sore when on-camera in certain environments. The SoloCast has a much more subdued look, with a small 1-inch LED that illuminates red to indicate that the mic is on. It’s a much more visually pleasing design than other offerings from the company.
There was however one design choice with the SoloCast that really bugged me during my time with it. The microphone utilizes the tap-to-mute feature that was introduced with the QuadCast, ensuring that it’s convenient for players to mute and unmute themselves without swapping applications or opening menus. On the QuadCast, the mic lights up red to let you know that it’s on, and the light goes out to indicate when you’re muted. On the SoloCast, the LED glows red to indicate the mic is on, but flashes on and off when muted.
I found this to be an odd and unnecessary choice. The flashing light in the corner of my eye meant that I was constantly double checking and triple checking that I was actually muted. It would’ve been much simpler, and more consistent, if the microphone’s LED just remained off when it was muted.
I was also a bit bummed to see that there’s no knob to easily adjust the gain on the microphone itself, like with the QuadCast microphone. That said, users can adjust their gain on their computer.
Packing a punch
The SoloCast is designed to be a more affordable entry point into HyperX’s ecosystem of audio devices. However, it’s sharp audio quality and sleek design have had me debating whether or not to make it my microphone of choice moving forward. Though I wasn’t a fan of the way the tap-to-mute LED flashes, or the lack of a gain control knob, the SoloCast is an impressive little microphone at a price that’s hard to argue with.
This review is based on a physical product provided by the manufacturer. The HyperX SoloCast is available now for $59.99 USD on the company's website.
- Crisp audio quality
- easy to use on desk and boom stand
- Sleek compact design
- LED flash when muted is strange
- No gain knob
Donovan Erskine posted a new article, HyperX SoloCast review: Big quality in a small package
There's a firmware update for the Solocast that changes the LED when muted. It just turns off. I had to swap to a shorter USB cable for it to update properly though, the one it came with seemed to have issues... but only when trying to update the firmware.