REVIEW: HyperX Cloud Flight Loses The Wire, Adds Comfort & Long Life
Known for their premium range of wired gaming headsets, HyperX has unveiled its first wireless offering, and despite arriving somewhat late to the party, its new ‘Cloud Flight’ proves worth the wait.
Following its unveiling at CES 2018, Cloud Flight (AS229) is a user friendly plug-and-play wireless gaming headset that claims to offer a whopping 30 hours of use, and is further enhanced by a lightweight, ergonomic build.
Spoiler alert: It’s one of the most comfortable gaming headsets I’ve ever used.
HyperX’s claims of long-wear comfort are certainly substantiated. As a rather petite female with a smaller head, my biggest headset gripes concern; bulkiness, heaviness and an uncomfortably tight fit.
Courtesy of memory foam and faux leather padded earcups, the Cloud Flight offers easy and comfortable wear for extended time periods. Despite several hours of use, I didn’t experience the after effects I normally would with other more weighty headsets.
The headset comes in about 300 grams without the microphone, and around 320 grams with the microphone.
The Cloud Flight is comparatively light, and when trialled by several other individuals, the response was largely unanimous – ‘Can I please keep this?’.
The product also offers 90-degree rotating earcups, which is great for portability.
As somewhat of a negative, it’s certainly not the most stylish product on the market. For someone who is drawn to great aesthetics, this is a bit of a letdown. However, I’m willing to let this slide given the product’s overall great quality.
Compared to HyperX’s more fanciful headsets (e.g. the Cloud Resolver) the Cloud Flight comes in looking rather plain, however, its clearly a case of ‘substance over style’.
Ensconced in black plastic and an aluminium handle, the product’s primary differentation is a light up ‘HyperX’ logo embedded to each earcup. Functionally, the LED lights don’t serve a huge purpose, but do add to HyperX’s branding.
Usage & Battery Life
The device’s left earcup houses a power button, 3.5mm jack for a wired connection, removable microphone and microUSB charging port. The right earcup sports the volume knob.
Users can conserve battery life by changing the LED light settings to glow without flickering, or remain off. The Cloud Flight’s 30 hour battery claim is underpinned by low use of the LED lights, and average volume levels.
HyperX claims the product’s 30 hour battery life is one of the longest available in today’s marketplace.
The Cloud Flight pledges 18 hours of battery life with ‘breathing’ LED lights, or approximately 13 hours with the lights always turned on (i.e. ‘solid’ LED).
Following over a week of standard gaming in breathing LED mode – with some regular music and movie use – I am yet to receive a ‘low battery’ notification. After asking some heavy gamers to trial the product, most agreed that HyperX’s Cloud Flight ranked in the top end of long life wireless headsets.
Users can also easily mute their microphone by pressing in the left ear cup.
As its first wireless offering, Hyper X’s challenge was to debut a headset which offers the same standard of audio quality, despite the absence of a wire. For many consumers, its often a case of ‘give-or-take’ concerning the trade off of wireless flexibility, and robust audio quality.
Boasting TeamSpeak and Discord certification, dynamic 50mm audio drivers, 2.4GHz broadcasting and a noise-cancelling microphone, I’m pleased to say HyperX met the challenge head on.
When trialled through a variety of circumstances and games, the Cloud Flight offered distinct and clear audio feedback that was immersive and largely rich. Subtleties in gaming audio were also nicely picked up.
For regular movie and music listening, sound quality remains relitively dynamic and immersive, and with its wireless capabilites makes a particularly impressive product.
For multiplayer games, the product’s distinct audio recognition was much appreciated, and I was able to hear accute sounds which would tip off my opponent’s position. I also didn’t experience any lag. All in all, it enhanced and supported my gaming experience which is essentially what you want in a headset.
Concerning microphone usage, there was little to fault. During multiplayer gaming, recipients could hear what I said clearly, with minimal background interference. I’d say the product is suitable for casual streaming, however, can’t comment on usage for professional broadcasting.
HyperX’s Cloud Flight headset is easy to use, courtesy of its plug-and-play nature. However, this does mean there is minimal audio customisation, as it doesn’t accompany dedicated software. For those who crave a little bit more technical freedom, this probably isn’t for you. However, it will likely appeal to those who want effortless simplicity.
One thing you may miss is the ability to monitor the headset’s battery life, through accompanying software.
HyperX’s Cloud Flight claims to be PC, PS4 & PS4 Pro ready, and overall I found the accompanying wireless USB dongle to work very well indeed. Device recognition was quick, and connectivity strength robust.
The headset maintained a wireless connection signal from several metres away, which makes it suitable for large rooms. HyperX claims the headset can sustain a wireless connection of up to 20 metres, and I maintained one in most places across our apartment.
Cloud Flight also comes with a 3.5mm analog cable to attach to mobile devices (e.g. a Nintendo Switch), however, this disables usage of the microphone and LED lights. Such a restriction is something to note, and for some users may be a bit of a letdown.
HyperX’s Cloud Flight is a great, simple to use gaming headset which offers ultra comfort, and a lag-free experience without compromising audio quality.
For individuals who crave a versatile, no-fuss wireless headset with long battery life, the Cloud Flight is a strong contender and an impressive product which largely delivers on its claims.
The fact it includes an analog cable adds further value, and its 90-degree rotating earcups enhances portability.
HyperX’s Cloud Flight Wireless Gaming Headset retails for A$229 and is available to pre-order from JB Hi-Fi now, with released scheduled for the 9th of February, 2018.