Best Headset for Fortnite – The Ultimate Guide
Sight and hearing are two of the most important senses when it comes to gaming, but the latter gets ignored by gamers all too often.
Having a good audio setup that lets you hear precisely what the enemy is doing and where they’re doing it can feel like borderline cheating and you’re doing yourself a disservice if you’re just using some cheap earbuds in our opinion. For this reason we’ve set out to see what the professionals are using and spoiler alert: they don’t skimp on their audio setup.
If you’re in the market for a new headset or headphones + external mic combo you’ve come to the right place, as we go over the qualities and overall features of the five most used Fortnite headsets. Enjoy!
What makes a headset good for Fortnite?
Headsets come in all sorts of shapes and with a wide variety of functions, and it’s going to be up to the end user to decide what they want to use when it comes to those functions and extra features.
In the end the two most important factors to consider when buying a headset are comfort and sound. You could have the best sounding set of cans in the world, but if it’s going to be physically uncomfortable for you to wear then it’s not gonna be an option.
Most gamers tend to go for a real headset (i.e. something with a mic attached to it) because it’s often way more portable and convenient, but if you’re someone who’s mostly gaming at home behind your own desk you can certainly opt for a regular pair of headphones along with an external microphone. You don’t need a gaming branded headset for gaming, after all.
In any case, it’s clear to see that the majority of Fortnite pros prefer a headset over the combo solution, but it is interesting to see that a regular pair of studio headphones gets the nod for fifth place.
The sky’s the limit for HyperX
HyperX have long been known for producing great headsets that don’t break the bank. Their Cloud lineup is featured heavily in every pro list that we’ve got, and the seemingly omnipresent Cloud II takes the top spot in this list, with the Cloud Alpha taking second place. Both feature a sturdy design and a no-nonsense approach to a gaming headset, complete with great audio and a more than decent mic, so it’s not really a surprise that these models are seen so often across a variety of games and genres.
Other brands are relatively close after HyperX’s dominance. We see the usual suspects such as Logitech, Razer, and Sennheiser, and here Astro also plays with the big boys.
Most used manufacturer
1. HyperX Cloud II
The industry standard
If you look at our pro settings and gear lists you’ll find that most of them have at least one thing in common, and that’s the fact that they all heavily feature the HyperX Cloud II, so HyperX must be doing multiple things right with this headset.
If you look at it on the surface you can already sort of understand it: it’s a no-nonsense headset that’s built with premium, nicely finished materials and it doesn’t feature any overly ‘gamery’ design elements which, along with the detachable mic, make it great to use as an on-the-go headset as well.
The Cloud II also includes two sets (leatherette and velours) of interchangeable ear cups, which is great if you don’t like the feeling of leatherette or you just want to change out to the more airy velours pads in the summer. Whatever it may be; the Cloud II is a nicely designed headset that seems to be a comfortable fit for the vast majority of gamers out there.
But design alone isn’t enough to catapult a product to the top of any ‘most used’ list (let alone multiple) so the Cloud II also has great sound and it comes with virtual 7.1 surround sound for PC. The Cloud II’s can be used (in regular stereo mode) on console or mobile as well, which further emphasizes the ‘industry standard’ feeling you get with this particular product.
One of the possible downsides here is that it doesn’t come with any software, so if you want to quickly switch between something like a more bass-heavy cinematic gaming profile and a flatter music profile you’re out of luck with the Cloud II’s as there is no EQ software to go along with the product.
The mic is more than decent as well, it’s not overly loud or quiet and does a great job of filtering out annoying background noises.
All of this means that this is basically the ultimate gaming headset if you just want a solid, dependable all-in-one audio solution without a plethora of extra functions or crazy design cues.
Most used headset
HyperX Cloud II
HyperX Cloud Alpha
beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro
ASTRO Gaming A40
SteelSeries Arctis Pro
2. HyperX Cloud Alpha
Better sound, no surround
The HyperX Cloud Alpha is one of the newer Clouds, and it tries to improve on the Cloud II by housing dual drivers which improve the audio quality and also implementing a slightly better microphone, though contrary to the number one on this list it doesn’t offer virtual 7.1 surround sound.
Other than that these headsets are basically the exact same. There are some minuscule differences in design, and the Alpha doesn’t come with any additional earcups, but other than that it’s up to you to decide what you prefer. Some people absolutely want the virtual 7.1, while others prefer the slightly better sounding (7.1-less) Alphas.
This headset is also fully compatible with consoles and mobile (as well as PC, obviously) so if you’re primarily a console gamer you can definitely go for this one, as the virtual 7.1 surround won’t work on console anyway.
3. beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro
Studio grade headphones
The beyerdynamic (this isn’t a typo; beyerdynamic doesn’t capitalize their name on their website either) DT 990 Pro is the odd one out. Whereas the first four entries in this list are all gaming headsets complete with a (detachable) mic the DT 990 Pro isn’t something that’s even marketed towards gamers.
The DT 990 Pro is actually an open-back pair of studio headphones, which is made primarily for producers and professionals in the music industry. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that people who work in this industry need their sound to be as clear and precise as possible, so if it’s good enough for professional musicians it should be good enough for professional gamers, right?
The DT 990 pro offers a very open soundstage, thanks to it’s open-back design. Open-back headphones aren’t completely sealed around the back, meaning that air (and noise) can freely travel through the earcups. This results in a broader and more ‘wide feeling’ soundstage when compared to closed-back products, which to a lot of people sounds better, but there are obviously tradeoffs.
Open-back headphones are (obviously) open, which means that sound can and will come in, so if you’re often gaming in a noisy environment or you want to hear as little outside noise as possible when gaming you probably don’t want to go for an open-back pair. If sound can come in it can also get out, so whatever you’re listening to will be much more audible to people around you if you’re rocking an open-back as well.
All in all the DT 990 Pro is a professional-grade pair of headphones, and it’s gonna be a fantastic option if you’re willing to invest in a separate external mic and if you’re gaming in a low-noise environment where there’s no one around you to disturb.
4. ASTRO Gaming A40
The base model of the ASTRO A40 is basically a pretty straightforward gaming headset with a lot of gamer-inspired design cues.
The aesthetics won’t please everyone, but the cool thing here is that you can customize almost everything. The mic, speaker tags, headband cover, and ear cushions are all detachable and thus moddable. ASTRO sells a bunch of premade customization kits online but there’s also the ability to design your own speaker tags and headband cover on ASTRO’s website, so if you’ve been dreaming of having your very own custom headset with your own logo or name on it but you’re not quite skilled or famous enough (yet!) to have a company actually design a signature model this is the one to go for.
When it comes to performance the A40 isn’t a slouch by any means. The mic does sound a bit soft (though it’s still perfectly clear and does a good job at filtering out background noise) but the audio is great and the headset is compatible with all platforms out of the box.
That’s pretty much all there is to it though (at least for the base model) as the A40 by itself doesn’t support any sort of (virtual) surround sound or quick-access EQ settings. If you want to do all that you’ll have to cough up some extra money and buy the ASTRO MixAmp Pro, which gives you the ability to mix chat and game volume, toggle virtual surround, change the overall volume, and select from a bunch of EQ options but if you want to get that along with the A40 headset it will significantly drive up the price.
If all you’re looking for is a decent enough wired gaming headset which is basically just plug-and-play you could certainly consider the A40 without the MixAmp. If you’re on console and want to get it with the MixAmp then make sure to order the correct version of said amp.
5. SteelSeries Arctis Pro
SteelSeries’ high end
SteelSeries as a gaming peripheral brand might have fallen off a bit in recent years but the company still knows how to make gaming products, and the Arctis Pro is living proof of that.
This headset comes in hot, sporting DTS Headphone:X v2.0 Surround Sound, fully programmable RGB lighting, a high quality (retractable) microphone and, most importantly, great sound quality. What you get is a premium looking headset that also offers premium performance.
There’s not a lot of tweaking to be done with the headset itself, though. If you want to play around with EQ settings or change the game/chat volume mix you’ll have to buy SteelSeries’ GameDAC (it’s a Digital to Analog Converter, which gives you better sound too) and that can raise the overall price by quite a bit. The headset is perfectly capable on its own, but if you’re one to love a bit of tweaking you’ll want to know about the GameDAC.
Conclusion: the best headset for Fortnite
Oddly enough this list seems to only feature three different models at this point in time. The Cloud II is on top (just as it is in many other games) thanks to its brilliant combination of no-nonsense design and excellent audio quality, but what’s really interesting to us here is the fact that the number five in our list is a pair of studio headphones that isn’t even marketed towards gamers.
That’s evidence towards the fact that there are many, many options when it comes to audio. A gaming headset is still being used by the vast majority of professionals (which makes sense, since gaming headsets are, you know, made for gamers) but it’s certainly worth it to take a look at some other audio solutions.
Whatever the case may be, it’s always important that you find something that’s right for you, so we hope that this list has been a bit helpful.
Thanks for reading!