HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless Review: Affordable lightweight gaming headphones
Quick verdict: It’s not the fanciest gaming headset around, and you’ll either love or loathe its lightweight design, but the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless certainly gets the gaming job done at moderate price point.
- Lightweight design is comfortable
- Cross PS4/PS5/PC compatibility
- IGood battery life
- Lightweight design feels cheap
- Very bass heavy audio
- Wireless only
The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless has one hell of a long name, but it's actually a fairly basic headset that sells on its cross PlayStation/PC compatibility and light design. That lightweight design is one of its best features – and arguably one of its worst, too.
- Very light construction
- Onboard volume controls
- Simple wireless dongle
The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless headphones make no secret of their brand allegiance in a design sense, with a white and black colour scheme that's meant to match Sony's PlayStation 5 style as closely as possible without infringing Sony's copyrights along the way.
The key factor for the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless is that it's light. Very light, in fact at a stated weight of 275 grams. If you're a gamer who doesn't like the heavy duty, heavy weight feel of those metal and leather style gaming headsets, this could be a real boon.
On the flip side, however, once you get over the weight you can't help but notice the areas where the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless feels more than a little cheap.
There's little in terms of smooth curves on the headband, which places a simple foam rest under a plastic band. The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless features an onboard volume wheel, but it has a cheap and light feel. There's a dropdown flexible microphone – and again, it feels light and rather cheap in its construction.
I certainly didn't break the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless during my review, but if you're looking for a gaming headset that can take a few knocks – or one that you're planning to travel with – the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless might not be the best match for your needs.
Aside from the headset, the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless box only comes with one other piece of technology, with a USB A connected wireless dongle for hooking up to your sound source. One of the other tradeoffs with this approach is that there's no option at all for wired connectivity if that's important to you.
- Easy connection to most audio sources
- Bass heavy audio suits games well
The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless is designed primarily to appeal to console gamers, and specifically owners of the PS4 and PS5 consoles. The stock shortages around Sony's next-gen console(https://www.finder.com.au/buy-playstation-5-controllers-accessories-online) meant that I didn't have a PS5 to hook the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless to, but my trusty – if slightly battle-weary – PlayStation 4 was easily compatible. Plug in the adaptor, power on the PS4, and the job is done, and I've no reason to think it's not the same for the PlayStation 5.
That's not the only connection mode that the wireless dongle will work with, as it happens. HyperX advises that it's also PC compatible – and you can even use HyperX's software with it if you fancy some very light audio tweaking – but just for the heck of it, I also plugged it into an M1 Apple MacBook Air and Apple iPad Pro 11 inch and both worked quickly and without issue.
Gaming headsets are almost universally tuned for gaming audio, and that means a strong focus on bass to accentuate game elements such as explosions. The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless is no exception, adding plenty of boom to titles such as EDF 5.1 – hey, what can I say, I like exploding ants – but at the rather more obvious cost of not being quite as good as a general purpose set of headphones. There's nothing stopping you using them for Netflix binges or Spotify listen fests, but you'll find them just a touch muddy in their presentation when doing so.
The swing-down microphone is workable, but not exceptional. It's well worth playing around with precise placement, because if you simply swing it close to your mouth you're quite likely to get clipped audio all too frequently, drawing the ire of anyone you're talking to or gaming with. Again, for what's effectively one of HyperX's cheaper headphone sets, that feels OK without being great.
- 17 hour battery life is mostly achievable
- USB C recharging
HyperX claims that the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless can manage up to 17 hours of battery life over wireless. That's not as high as some of its other headsets – but again, this is a lower cost set of headphones.
While gaming for 17 hours straight isn't advisable for ergonomic reasons, as well as the fact that my bladder isn't in fact made of stainless steel, it's a fair figure for what you're likely to get from the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless in real world use. HyperX provides a USB C charging cable in the box, but no actual charger.
Should you buy the HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless?
- Buy it if you want a lightweight set of PS5 headphones.
- Don't buy it if you want a heavy duty build or wired connectivity.
The HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless certainly isn't the cheapest set of compatible headphones you might connect to your gaming console or PC, but they're entirely fair for their asking price. If you do find existing "pro" level gaming headsets a little too heavy for your head after hours of gameplay, they could be exactly what you're looking for.
Pricing and availability
PriceThe HyperX Cloud Stinger Core Wireless headphones sell in Australia for $169.
Where to buy
Images: insert image source - usually the author's name