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Sunday | December 11, 2016
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Kingston HyperX Cloud 2 Review

Kingston HyperX Cloud 2 Review

How time flies. It seems like just a couple of months ago that we reviewed Kingstons first Cloud headset but in fact it was July… thats ages in the technology world. We guess thats why they are now launching a second model and today we cover it in our Kingston HyperX Cloud 2 Review.

Kingston HyperX Cloud 2 Review – Packaging and Bundle

kingston-hyperx-cloud-2-review-headset-boxВ kingston-hyperx-cloud-2-review-headset-bundle1

Kingston give us plenty of key information about the Cloud 2 headset on the packaging, both in written form and via images. Inside we find the headset contained in a second box and suspended in foam along with some documentation.

kingston-hyperx-cloud-2-review-headset-bundle2В kingston-hyperx-cloud-2-review-headset-pod

Also bundled with the headset is a travel pouch, alternate fabric covered ear pads, airplane adapter and the removable mic. This connectsВ to the left cup before extending out 15cm to a foam covered condenser (back electret) which features Cardioid polar pattern and pressure gradient operating principle. Its frequency response is 50-18000Hz and we have a nominal impedance of <2.2kOhm with THD of 2% at f=1kHz. Max SPL is 105dB and our microphone has a SPL of 105dB with output of -39 +/-3dB.

Also key to the product is the bundled control pod which has seen a design revision since the last model. With the Cloud 2 our single 3.5mm audio connector plugs into the top and then on the front surface we have controls for audio and mic volume as well as a centre control which enables/disables the virtual 7.1 mode. The left side of the pod has a switch for the mic mute and then a 2m braided cable exits the base, ending in a USB 2.0 connector. Worthy of note is that this pod has a clip on the back to hold it to our clothing and that the HyperX logo lights up in red.

Kingston HyperX Cloud 2 Review – The Headset

kingston-hyperx-cloud-2-review-headset-fullВ kingston-hyperx-cloud-2-review-headset-headband

It would be fair to say that not much has changed in terms of the appearance of the HyperX Cloud headset between the original model and the new version which weighs 320g (excluding cable and mic). Although now we can get Black, Red/black and white/pink editions. This is a closed back headset and the arms and ear cups are aluminium. Across the headband we find a leatherette cover with foam beneath. Each of the earcups tilt on the arm to fit our head and the arms can be extended by around 1 inch each.

kingston-hyperx-cloud-2-review-headset-earcupsВ kingston-hyperx-cloud-2-review-headset-connector

As with the original model each of the earcups arrives with a leatherette pad installedВ and inside those covers are memory foam cushions. As well as the brushed aluminium finish on our headset we get a soft touch coating on some sections and the wires which take our audio signal from cup to cup are braided. Inside our drivers on this headset are 53mm and have a frequency response of 15-25000 Hz with Sound Pressure Level of 98 +/- 3dB. Impedance is 60 ohms and T.H.D. is rated for <2%. The Cloud 2 has a power handling capacity of 150mW and ambient noise attenuation of approx. 20 dBa.

In another change to the original design at the end of the 1m braided cable, gone are the dual 3.5mm connectors for audio and mic, replaced by a single 3.5mm connector which is smartphone/tablet and Xbox One/PS4 compatible.

Kingston HyperX Cloud 2 Review – User Experience and Conclusion

Looking back to the last time we saw a Cloud headset, what did we say about that portion of the product?

“moving on to the build quality we have a product which feels robust. The brushed aluminium frame and cups feel solid and look good with the soft touch coating adding a nice contrast as well as grip. We love the inclusion of leatherette and fabric ear pads and the braided cable should add durability… …it is comfortable in longer gaming sessions and produces some detailed audio with plenty of bass (and volume). Aspects such as gunfire and stereo effects are very well created when gaming…”

It would be fair to say that not much has changed on these fronts. Especially the build quality. This is a well built, solid feeling headset. Of course the lack of changes also means that the little quirks like the mic port cover not being attached are still present. That’s going to get lost easily. We are also disappointed that Kingston dont bundle a short cable to convert the single 3.5mm cable to 2x 3.5mm for those who might want to skip the use of the USB soundcard… though we do appreciate that this single plug solution is Smartphone/Tablet/console compatible.

The bundled USB soundcard has of course had an internal and external redesign. The new 7.1 mode is decent, though not spectacular and the pod is easy to use. We found ourselves sticking to stereo more often than not though. As this is a plug and play headset there is also no fine detail control available. Its on/off and volume. Having said that the quality of sound on Cloud 2 has improved for music playback. We still get the same quality gaming and movie experience but the harsh sound of the original for music has been resolved. The only area where we see a noticeable difference in quality over the original is the volume available on the mic. We had it right at its limit and it was only just acceptable. Too much volume available is always better than too little as is the case here. We should have been able to go into the device properties and boost further within Windows but that option was blocked out, something which we have raised with Kingston and report back on.

Update: There are no issues with volume on alternate devices, such as smartphones. It would seem that what we feel is an acceptable max volume differs from Kingston. Though we do note that there is enough volume available via USB for most usage cases.

Summary: We still think that calling this range “Cloud” isn’t ideal given what we all associate that term with… however the audio quality of the headset is impressive and the build quality high. That wins it our recommended award.

Recommended Award

More info available from Kingston.

About Author

Stuart Davidson

5 Comments

  1. David

    I’m told that this headset is not fully compatible with the PS4 when it comes to plugging it in to the USB slot. Would anybody be able to confirm this for me?

  2. stefan

    The kingston headset is defectife why is it that when i plug it into my pc there is a chaking buzzing sound and not when i plug it into my phone

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