Choosing between gaming headphones and gaming earbuds? The winner isn’t exactly obvious, especially as technology advances. Click to learn the benefits of each.
Gaming on-the-go isn’t a new trend. Since even before the Gameboy enabled you to play Tetris in the backseat of your parents’ minivan, you could enjoy dots racing across a small screen with Mattel Football.
To say handheld gaming tech has come a long way since 1977 is an understatement. With new, powerful portable hardware and cloud-based subscriptions that deliver console/PC-quality performance on your phone, tablet or handheld, there’s virtually no limit to what—or where—you can play.
But if you’re hoping to rip a few rounds of Splatoon 3 at full volume in the dentist’s office, a good set of wireless earbuds or a gaming headset can help you get your game on without getting weird looks from people.
Besides the obvious social benefits, connecting a pair of wireless earbuds or a headset to your PC/Mac, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch or Android enhances the immersive experience of your favorite games. In narrative titles, hearing environmental effects and voice acting in greater detail pulls you deeper into the story. Competitive gamers can gain an edge over their rivals with responsive, low-latency audio to detect (and avoid) enemy gunshots and grenades before it’s game over.
So, which is better for gaming—true wireless earbuds or a gaming headset? Like pretty much everything that happens in Elden Ring, it’s open to interpretation. But don’t rage quit on us yet. Read on, Tarnished, and unlock the pros and cons of wireless earbuds vs. headsets for gaming.
Select Your Character—Wireless Earbuds vs. Gaming Headsets
Choosing between wireless earbuds or a headset made for gaming is a lot like creating a new character in your favorite RPG. Depending on when, where and—most importantly—how you like to play, you might prefer one to the other.
Benefits of Wireless Earbuds for Gaming
If you wear glasses or stream on Twitch, wireless gaming earbuds are a no-brainer. Stylish and discreet, gaming earbuds are ideal for keeping your on-cam stream looking sharp and clean—they’re not going to interfere with your earrings or mess up your hair. And since there’s no headband or earpads, there’s nothing to crush your glasses against your face while you’re picking up loot, so you can play in comfort for hours.
The best earbuds for gaming are portable, versatile, lightweight and low latency. If you play across multiple platforms—mobile, cloud, console, PC, etc.—you’ll want earbuds that are easy to carry and connect to your different devices.
If you’re looking for earbuds that perform “on the job” as well as “in the game,” look for powered-up premium features like hands-free calling and customizable tap controls so you can adjust volume, skip tracks or keep in touch with your squadmates—whether you’re gaming on Steam, making phone calls or brainstorming on Slack.
Earbuds like Logitech’s G FITS true-wireless earbuds are ideal for mixing business with pleasure. With LIGHTFORM technology, G FITS mold themselves to the exact shape of your ears in just 60 seconds flat. It’s a comfortable, custom fit for all-day gaming marathons—or listening to music as you run a marathon IRL. When it’s time to game, pop the included USB-C LIGHTSPEED adapter into your device for pro-grade ultra-low latency performance. Just don’t go all “Leroy Jenkins” on us, okay?
Benefits of Gaming Headsets
If you’re strictly a couch/desk potato when you game, a wireless gaming headset could be the key to victory.
Modern AAA games like Halo: Infinite and God of War: Ragnarök push the limits of game sound design with thrilling and immersive 3D audio technology that you’ll want to hear in the best gaming headset for your setup and personal taste. Logitech’s G773 LIGHTSPEED Wireless RGB Gaming Headset supports next-gen DTS Headphone:X 2.0 surround sound for gamers seeking to get lost in the action.
Unless you have earrings or glasses—even cushy headphones have a habit of pressing the arms of your frames uncomfortably into the area around your ears—you’ll probably find the padded earpieces and secure, over the head fit pretty comfortable. Though not necessarily as comfortable as custom-fit earbuds, you should have no problem settling into a long and immersive campaign without discomfort.
We’ve already mentioned that earbuds are probably the ideal choice if you want to avoid impacting your hairstyle, headphones might be a better option if you use a green screen. Hair is a little more difficult to render around on green screen, but the band from headphones or a headset provide a stronger barrier between where you end and the green screen begins.
One thing to consider is that gaming headsets aren’t quite as portable as earbuds. But sometimes big things come in even bigger packages. With 40mm audio drivers and an inclusive fit, Logitech’s G735 Wireless Gaming Headset is a huge upgrade from tv or tablet speakers. And even if you wouldn’t necessarily wear a gaming headset on a plane, they are still portable enough to take to a friends’ house for local co-op.
Wireless Earbuds for Gaming vs. Gaming Headsets: Remastered
Whether you’re Team Earbud or a member of the Headset Guild, you can’t argue that both have stellar stats depending on your specific needs. Wireless earbuds deliver portability, customizable touch controls and a low-profile that’s great for casual gaming on the go. Or you can stick with a gaming headset for an old-school over-the-ear fit with comfy, cushioned earpieces and surround sound.
Which do you prefer? Lean and nimble, able to hide away in your pocket, or ultra powerful but a bit less portable—the choice is yours.