When it comes to headsets Corsair has been in the market for years now. But a lot of their designs, while good, have been a little on the aggressive side for styling. Now a lot of gamers are into that sort of thing, but for some people looking like a 15 year old kid while at their PC might get them judged by their significant other, roommate, friends, or by their own self. So some people just want a classic looking headset and a while back Corsair filled that gap with their HS50 and HS60 headsets. Well, I’ve had the HS60 around for a while and have been testing it out, let's talk a little about what its all about and how it performed in my testing.
Product Name: Corsair HS60
Review Sample Provided by: Corsair
Written by: Wes Compton
Pictures by: Wes Compton
Amazon Affiliate Link: HERE
The HS60 headset came in a box that bleeds Corsair. The yellow trim on the sides is most other Corsair products and of course, you have the sails up in the top left corner with the Corsair branding. The background is black but has some white lines in the background. Then in the foreground is a photo of the headset itself. Not enough companies put pictures of the product inside on the front of the box so I have to give Corsair credit here.
Around on the back, there is another picture of the HS60 only smaller. Corsair has highlighted a few features (7 of them). Each has a short description that is then repeated in three more languages. Down along the bottom they have also included a specification list in all of the different languages as well. I missed getting a photo but inside of the box you will find the headset inside of a plastic tray. Along with it is a small USB sound card as well.
Photos and Features
So like I said before, the whole thing about the HS60 is the traditional look. That means oval-shaped earcups, normal headband, and a regular microphone, not something in the cord or huge. Corsair did all of those things. The HS60 has oval earcups with just a touch of style. The Corsair sails on the middle are a nice touch, as is the white ring but I like the full mesh sides. This is because the HS60’s are an open-air design. That means some airflow to keep your ears cool but mostly it means you can hear things around you while wearing them. So that is a preference thing, some people will prefer a sealed headset to cut down outside noise.
To go with the traditional design Corsair went with a normal headband, not a suspended design. This means a faux leather covering on the underside with thick padding. They did a little more than that with the diamond-shaped stitching in white that really pops. The top is also covered, this is where they embossed the Corsair name for a simple and clean design.
On the left earcup, the HS60 has all of its controls together. The HS60 is in itself a normal headset, not a USB headset. There is a USB sound card included but being separate you aren’t going to find lighting for example. What you have is a volume control that controls the volume coming into the headset, not a USB style volume control that is actually changing your windows volume. Then below that is a microphone mute button, without USB power this mute isn’t going to have a microphone status indicator. So keep those in mind.
So traditional earcups also mean a traditional oval inside the earcups. The HS60 has a faux or fake leather material on the earcup padding. What stood out to me though was just how thick the padding is, as someone who has had trouble with over the ear headphones and headsets rubbing on my ears, I welcome anything that helps keep my ear off the inside of the earcup. Also inside the earcup, you have to have speakers to listen to things right? Well, the HS60 has 50mm drivers in each earcup. These are listed at 7.1 headphones but I will get into what that is all about in just a minute. Just know you aren’t getting multiple drivers per ear, just the one big driver. They have a total range of 20Hz - 20 kHz, not too far off the 20-22 kHz of the SteelSeries Arctis 5 for example.
For adjustment, the HS60 has adjustability built into the headband on each side. You can pull down on each earcup to pull a little more length out of the headband. In total you get under an inch on each side, the measurements as you pull it out show you where you are set. The earcups also have a little bit of adjustment as well. They tilt to fit your head but I was surprised that there wasn’t a little more play available, you can only move them maybe 30 degrees in total. There is a small amount of twist as well, at most 20 degrees, I would prefer to have enough to be able to flip the cup sideways to lay the whole headset flat or to flip an ear up when it gets hot when gaming.
The left earcup is also where you plug in the detachable microphone. By default, it comes detached with a rubber plug in the hole. The microphone plugs in with a 3.5mm jack but the design is uniquely shaped so you can only plug it in one way. This also means you can’t, later on, switch to a microphone off of another product. The microphone itself is on a long flexible boom. I like the flexible design as it is metal and it allows for almost infinite adjustment where some headsets only have a small amount of play in one direction if you are lucky. The microphone is Unidirectional with sound canceling, you can see that there is a microphone on the back side of the microphone for the sound canceling. The microphone itself has a range of 100Hz to 10kHz, about half the range of the HS60 speakers.
So I’ve brought up the connection type and the included USB sound card a few times. I did that because it plays multiple roles for starters, the USB sound card is, from what I can tell, what sets the HS60 apart from the HS50. It is why they list this as a 7.1 headset rather than a stereo headset. That is because the sound card is set up to simulate 7.1, I’m not a big fan of this solution of 7.1 in general but I will reserve my judgment until I get into the testing here in a minute. The other reason this setup is important, is because this dongle gives you two different connection options. The headset itself comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack so you can plug it into most gaming consoles, some phones, and of course into computers. The USB option is nice for people with poor quality onboard sound or who want to cheat and plug into a USB hub on their desk lol. As for the cord, the HS60 has a 1.8-meter long cord or just under 6 feet long. It is a thick rubber that should have a lot of protection in it, even without the almost standard sleeving that you see on other gaming-focused devices.
Audio Quality and Performance
For testing, I focus on two main areas, audio quality, and comfort. Then I take a look at any other external performance things with the headset like volume controls, lighting, and quality. I spend at least 2 weeks with the headset and more whenever possible to get the best feel for it over a variety of situations. For the HS60 I’ve actually had this one on hand for a while and have been using it off and on for at least a month.
So to start things off, how was the overall comfort of the HS60? Well, the first thing I noticed was that the earcups fit well over my big ears. The padding is thick enough to keep the inside of the earcup off my ears and the padding din;t really touch my ears around the outside edge as well. So for comfort in that area, with nothing touching, I really only have to worry about heat. The open-air design helps a little with that, I still get really warm when gaming so I did have to pull an ear off from time to time, but it was about the bare minimum, normally I have to do it more often with other headsets. As for the headband, the traditional headband design isn’t actually my preferred style, I like a suspension design. To me, they feel lighter and spread any pressure out across the whole band. You can avoid this with really thick padding that is also soft. The HS60 has that thick padding, but it was still firm, so I could feel the top of my head right from the start and when gaming for extended periods of time I did move it around from time to time to keep it from hurting. To go with the earcup size, the headset, in general, fit my big head well with room to grow. I wanted more flexibility in a few areas, but as far as comfort goes that didn’t end up being an issue.
For audio testing, I tested both with and without the included sound card. For me I have an expensive X7 DAC already, I have no need for the sound card personally. So switching between them was noticeable, my DAC is much higher in quality and it showed in the performance. But that DAC also costs a LOT more than what the HS60 costs altogether, so comparing those isn’t fair. But I was impressed with the way the headset sounded when using my DAC. Switching to the USB sound card, the performance was actually not as bad as you might expect. The 50mm drivers help a lot to bring in some lows and things are responsive. I would compare these with the Arctis 3’s and put them a little below the Artctis 5 and Sennheiser GSP300’s that are both up in the higher sub $100 price range. I think for most people though, the HS60 is going to surprise you. Corsair went back to old school styling and old school sound quality. In game, sound was crisp and clear where it was coming from and I really liked them when watching movies.
Beyond the big two, I found a few aspects of the HS60 interesting. For starters, the overall feel is solid. They don’t squeak or flex when you move them around and the quality feels a few steps higher than what these are selling for. You still get standard faux leather on things, so don’t get me wrong this isn’t a $150 headset, but the construction is at least good. You cant say that for a lot of the gaming headsets on the market. I also really liked the mute button. It was easy to reach and because of how much it sticks out when unmuted you can tell right away with a quick touch if you are muted or unmuted. In line, buttons are never clear and Corsair managed to make it clear enough that you don’t need a status LED for it. The microphone also has a good amount of flexibility. It can’t wrap around behind you or complexly be pushed out of the way, but you are going to have no trouble making sure it is at least in front of your mouth. Of course, I can’t promise your team is going to want to hear what you have to say.
Overall and Final Verdict
So overall what do I think of the Corsair HS60? Well, I’m really digging the classic styling, this is a lot more like the Corsair audio products that I know like their original speakers. Dropping the focus on being flashy looking and just focusing on performance. I love the open air design both because it keeps my ears a little cooler when gaming and also because I prefer to be able to hear around me. Audio performance was good, especially when paired with a good DAC. I also really like that the earcups are large and capable of going around my ears without touching them and thick enough to keep my ears off the inside of the headset. The device support is really good as well because of the use of a 3.5mm headphone jack. You can use these with a lot of the mobile phones on the market, all PCs, and even game consoles.
The HS60 wasn’t perfect. The headband, while very padded was firm and could be uncomfortable to some. I also think the earcups would benefit from a little more adjustment room. The headband has a lot of room, but the earcups only had 20-30 degrees of adjustment on the pivot and left-right movement. But the main issue for me with the HS60 is what makes the HS60 different from the HS50. The included sound card is going to be needed for some people. But for me, the simulated 7.1 surround wasn’t all that impressive. Audio quality was good, but I still preferred running into my DAC. For those of you who need a USB device, go with the HS60. But if you don’t get the HS50, it looks to have the same drivers and headset design but without the nice white trim. But you save $20 and suddenly a good headset becomes a great headset at that price point. At less than $50 you are coming in way less than the Arctis 3 and the HyperX Cloud Core headsets with similar performance.
Live Pricing: HERE