With similarities to the JBL Quantum One and Quantum 800, that we reviewed earlier in the year, the JBL Quantum 300 is a more budget conscious gaming headset. Naturally being budget conscious, there are certainly some major differences between this and JBL’s flagship models.
First impressions out of the box, I was a little underwhelmed. It’s all plastic construction and pretty plain design, they definitely missed some of the wow factor that the more expensive units had. They felt a little cheap, but then again, they are pretty cheap, so in a way I sort of expected this. However, once on, they surprised me by feeling very comfortable and light. The ear pad and head band material is made from a very premium feeling memory foam, making it really nice and soft. They are a little tight to begin with, but you soon get used to them and they are comfortable for hours long gaming sessions. The ear pads are thick and block out a lot of outside noise, making for good isolation and it means you don't need to have the volume on max to enjoy whatever you're listening to.
The design itself is very minimalistic, which won't be for everyone, but the more I look at them, the more I like them. Unlike the Quantum 800 and Quantum One, the 300 doesn't feature any eye-catching RGB lighting and has very minimal buttons on the earcups. The cord is a really premium feeling braided cord, that just feels like it's going to stand the test of time.
The sound out of the box is pretty average and a little flat. But, with the use of the JBL QuantumENGINE software and a little tweaking, you can get them sounding a bit more premium. With these tweaks, they actually have a really nice range and good bass. I was able to utilize the 7.1 with effect in a few games (PUBG, Rust, CS:GO & VALORANT). Having never used 7.1 before, I did notice this and was very surprised by how much difference it makes.
Probably the Quantum 300’s biggest downfall, and where I suspect a chunk of the cost was saved is the microphone. There's no other word to use to describe it, it is mediocre. Used in discord (and a sample recorded using hya.io) there was a noticeable lack of bass throughput and high treble. It also seemed to struggle with being audible with a real change in pitch when talking.
Depending on what you're looking for in a headset, and how budget conscious you are, the JBL Quantum 300 could be the perfect headset for you. Personally, I'd save up the extra $120 and purchase arguably the best all round gaming headset on the market, the JBL Quantum 800. However, if $250 is out of your budget, and you don't mind the usable but mediocre microphone then the JBL Quantum 300 boasts great sound quality at its price point. After those tweaks, of course.