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Corsair HS80 Review

Corsair are a brand with a pretty stellar reputation in the gaming world, their headsets are considered some of the best on the market by many, their microphones especially are renowned for being some of the best gaming headset mics available. So let's see for ourselves how they stack up to the likes of the EPOS GSP670, which is our current leader in terms of built in headset mics…

Out of the box, the Corsair HS80 is clearly a very good looking headset, very sleek in black or white with nice bevelled edges and it's just a very clean looking headset. There's no over the top RGB, the microphone can be flipped to mute which means it won't get in the way if you don't want it to. To be honest, I even really like the way corsair is written across the top of the headband as it's super understated and not as in your face as some other brands tend to be. One of the more noticeable features straight away is the headband. Corsair have opted not to go with a traditionally adjustable headband, but instead go with a ski mask style band that runs across the top of your head. This means no matter the size or shape of your head, the headband will pretty much automatically adjust to the correct resistance level and will give you a nice snug fit without the need for the traditional manual adjustment etc. For those of us who want a little less clamping force there is a way inside the headband to adjust the comfort of this on, something I hadn't even realised until halfway through this review.

The ear cups are extremely deep and large enough for ears of all shapes and sizes, and it's the left ear cup that houses all the on board controls such as the power button and a very satisfying tactile volume wheel with a super crisp feeling tactile click every time you move the volume up or down. Rounding out the left earcup is of course the microphone and the plug for the USB-C charger. Personally, I always like a game/chat mixer dial, however the Corsair HS80 doesn't have one which is a bit of a bummer.

Let's talk about the comfort levels of the HS80. These “ski mask” style headbands are my absolute favourite in terms of comfort. Headsets like the SteelSeries Arctis series headsets and the HyperX Cloud Revolver S features this very same style of band and for me, the Cloud Revolver S is the most comfortable headset that I have ever personally tested. I'm happy to report similar results with the HS80, I will admit, when I first put them on, I found them a little too firm in terms of head fit and clamping force, but that's because I didn't realise that there was in fact an adjustment in this headband, but unlike the likes of the SteelSeries the adjustment here is hidden on the inside of the band rather than on the top of the band. This in addition to the extremely plush and very breathable cotton ear cups there's not really a lot to fault here. The HS80 is in fact up there with the Cloud Revolver S in terms of headband fit and comfort.

In terms of build quality, the HS80 is a very solid headset. They are heavy in your hand without ever feeling heavy to wear, the pivot points are all solid metal and the headband itself, while made of plastic, is extremely rugged and allows for a lot of twisting and bending without ever becoming damaged or misshapen. I think the word rugged really sums up the build quality here.

Battery life on the Corsair HS80 is marketed at about 20 hours, but honestly I got much closer to 30 than I did 20, I am not sure why the discrepancy here but I definitely won't say no to an extra 6 or 7 hours of gaming time. This time actually increased slightly further when I turned off the RGB lighting in the iCue software. While 20 hours isn't a huge battery life, I personally don't have much issue with this as I tend to usually charge my headset overnight or at least every couple of nights depending how much I've used them, so I never really have to worry about them reaching zero.

In terms of sound quality, the out of the box settings are good, not great, but not bad. I did initially have some issues with hearing footsteps in games like COD, but once plugged into the PC and I messed around with the settings I was able to find a balance that worked really well for me and my needs. This really upped the ante and gave the headset a really nice sound. Now I know, sound profiles etc are a very personal thing. But let me tell you that if you play games like COD or Rainbow 6 etc then the HS80 is a great option for you. The HS80 does also come with Dolby Atmos for headsets, simply download the Dolby Access app and it will automatically be redeemed. This is a nice little bonus and we all know how good Dolby Atmos is, so it really duals the sound quality up from a 7 to a solid 8 or 9 when used on PC.

Now the overwhelming thing I always hear about Corsair headsets is the quality of the mic, so of course it was one of the first things I tested when using the HS80 and WOW! We have a new leader in terms of gaming headset microphone quality in my opinion. Don't get me wrong, the likes of the EPOS GSP670 and H3Pro are fantastic, but the HS80 takes headset mics to another level. It is honestly a broadcast quality mic and one that no matter your requirements, will not let you down. Whether it be chatting with friends, streaming or even starting a podcast. Now of course a standalone mic is still going to be better in terms of quality and clarity, but the HS80 Mic is as close as a headset gets in my opinion. One thing that did annoy me though and a thing you can fix in the iCue software is the annoying white microphone light that is both quite bright in a dark room and is right at eye level. As I said this is fixable in the software however if you don't have a PC for whatever reason this will be quite annoying.

Overall the Corsair HS80 is a top headset. Not only is it consistent in terms of comfort, sound quality and build quality, but the microphone is an absolute game changer and is an easy way to get yourself a broadcast quality mic. There's definitely better headsets in terms of connectivity and to be honest sound quality, but at the price point, you'd struggle to find a headset that's as good across the board as the Corsair HS80.

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