HyperX Cloud 3 Gaming Headset review: Light as a cloud, loud as a storm

The follow-up to the popular Cloud 2 gaming headset features a multitude of improvements aimed at improving everything folks loved, but does it succeed on all fronts?


HyperX’s Cloud series of headsets have been a highly popular and widely used series of audio solutions throughout the gaming community for years, so how do you improve upon something so beloved? For HyperX, the answer seems to be “every way possible.” The company recently launched its latest iteration in the Cloud 3 Gaming Headset. It’s a wired headset, but at the price, it provides incredible comfort and a stellar sound system to boot, with only a handful of caveats.

What’s in the box?

The contents that come with the HyperX Cloud 3 Gaming Headset.
The contents that come with the HyperX Cloud 3 Gaming Headset.

The HyperX Cloud 3 Gaming Headset is a pretty modest package. Inside the box, users will find the headset itself, a braided cord with 3.5mm audio plug, an extender cord with changeable USB-A and USB-C connectors, a 10mm detachable microphone, and instruction booklets. It’s a pretty plug-and-play package too. I particularly appreciate the various connection options because regardless of your setup, you should be able to connect the Cloud 3 to whatever device you want to use it with. It’s compatible with pretty much every modern gaming device too: PC, PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and mobile devices.

On the headset itself, there are also a few notable features. The first thing I noticed was how light and comfy the headset feels. I’ve been using a wireless headset with batteries in it for a while, but even compared to my other previous wired headsets, the Cloud 3 fits its name - It feels like a cloud on my head. TThat’s also impressive considering it packs in 53mm audio drivers, a durable and clean-feeling frame, and on-board audio and mic controls. The only thing I wish HyperX also packed in was a more permanent fixture to be able to bundle the Cloud 3’s cords up. It’s got a lot of cord to go around, especially if you use the USB connectors. Instead of connecting the USB cord to the headset, you actually plug the 3.5mm input into a port in the USB cord. I would have liked some sort of band to bundle up the cord and get rid of the slack so I didn’t have to come up with my own solutions for that.

How does it sound?

For being such a light headset, the Cloud 3 packs some mighty noise. During work, I was using the headset frequently to listen to music and, boy howdy, does it bring the bass like booming thunder. I found it also worked well when I was playing games. The sound mixing, surround-sound qualities, and more brought a great and immersive audio experience out of games like Jagged Alliance 3 and BattleBit Remastered. You can even upgrade and customize your sound experience with the help of DTS Headphone:X Spatial Audio. Generally speaking, I found it was just stellar no matter what platform or activity I was using with the Cloud 3.

I won’t go as far as to say it’s an absolutely perfect experience, and that comes down to the way you connect the headset. When using the 3.5mm plug, I found I got the most out of the Cloud 3. It brought the noise and immersion and set the stage for what I came to expect from the headset. Unfortunately, when I plugged it into the USB connectors and tested it that way, I felt like I lost just a touch of sound quality. I don’t think the USB route is bad whether you use the USB-A or USB-C connection. I just think that the 3.5mm connection makes it sound notably better and is the clear way to go if you have the option.

Is it worth it?

HyperX Cloud 3 sound drivers
Source: HyperX

The corded version of the HyperX Cloud 2 headset still retails at around $79.99 USD at its normal price. The HyperX Cloud 3 retails at $99.99, and I think it’s a substantially better sound experience. Against my usual headsets, the sound, bass, and sheer comfort of the Cloud 3 feels awesome, although I lament the addition of wires here in comparison to my usual freedom. I also worry about whether a Cloud 3 wireless version would keep the same sound quality based on my experience testing the 3.5mm vs. USB connection.

Putting theoretical future headsets aside, I think the HyperX Cloud 3 headset is an incredible and economic option among high-performance gaming headsets. We’re talking about a headset comparable to something like the PlayStation Pulse 3D headset’s price, but I would put the Cloud 3’s comfort and performance above the Pulse, with one of the only caveats being having to deal with a wire.

This Cloud is storming

HyperX Cloud 3 headset in black
Source: HyperX

Ultimately, I agree with HyperX that this is the next big step for its Cloud series of headsets. The Cloud 3 feels like one of the comfiest audio options I’ve ever had the pleasure of putting on my head. Then, when I turn it on, it lays into my noggin with the burly sounds I tend to crave. Whether I’m gaming, listening to music, watching video, or any other activity, on pretty much any platform I want, the Cloud 3 delivers. I wish I could minimize the clutter with a built in option on the cords, and I wish it had sound quality parity between 3.5mm and USB connections, but for the same price as a lot of current options, you’ll get a deliciously decadent sound option that can be worn for hours without any discomfort. In the end, I feel the Cloud 3 delivers where it counts and it might be my go-to when I don’t mind dealing with corded options.

This review is based on a sample model provided by the manufacturer. The HyperX Cloud 3 Gaming Headset is available now through the HyperX store for $99.99 USD, as well as through partnered retailors.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at tj.denzer@shacknews.com and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

  • Good price for its contents
  • Sound is good across the board
  • 3.5mm sound is stellar
  • Extremely comfy and durable
  • Good quality in comparison to similar-priced options
  • No included bundling for cords
  • 3.5mm plays better than USB connection
  • No wireless version yet
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