There are a lot of emerging headset manufacturers hitting the gaming scene. HyperX, Polk and Giotek are all good entry-level priced gaming headsets. There’s a new, if not old, name re-hitting the market now. Thrustmaster have been around for some time now, with a pedigree in making solid, reliable and affordable accessories for PC gaming and consoles alike. Made available from the 7th of March, the Thrustmaster Y-300CPX headset is the successor to the popular Y-280CPX and looks to improve on the older model’s design and features. Does it deliver, and can it compete with the emerging entry-level headsets?
Kicking off with the box contents, Thrustmaster have included a plethora of connectivity straight out of the box. They really have covered all bases with Component, USB and 3.5mm connectivity. They have also included an in-line controller so you can alter the sound to your own preferences. This would be fine, if it could be used with the 3.5mm jack. As it is, if you’re using the headset adapter on an Xbox One controller, stick the 4+metre cabling back in the box as you won’t be using it.
The Y-300CPX boasts 50mm drivers to deliver quite fantastic sound quality which, even when being used with the 3.5mm jack is simply amazing for the cost. The audio I experienced while reviewing Plants Vs Zombies: Garden Warfare 2 was simply brilliant. From the various projectile firing sounds to the almost metallic bouncing of the bullet casings, each sound was picked up and picked out excellently. The double electro-acoustic bass amplifier provides a deep, heavy sound and is powered by one of Thrustmaster’s stable-mates, Hercules, who specialise in PC hardware.
As with so many other headsets that are or have come out recently, the Y-300CPX features a removable microphone stalk. Such a key component of a gaming headset should be able to deliver clear, accurate audio with an absence of background noise. In this respect, as with the sound delivery, the Y-300CPX does not disappoint. The unidirectional mic, as mentioned, can be detached so you can simply use the headset as high-quality headphones.
The overall design of the headset lends itself to comfort. The Y-shaped headband and cup-supports provide pressure in the right areas to keep the headset steady and comfortable. There isn’t so much pressure from the headband that you feel the need to pop them off to give your ears some respite. They sit very lightly on the head too, even if initially they feel a little ungainly. There was a lot of gap between the band and my head when worn, but it’s just aesthetic, right?
The ear cups aren’t too tight to the ears and the cushioning is nice and deep, the sort of cushioning you’d like to feel yourself sinking into at the end of a long day. There did seem to be a little sound leakage into the ear-cups, which if truth be told was nothing more than muffled noise, but when that muffled noise is your wife trying to get your attention, I suppose it’s better to be able to hear something rather than nothing at all.
Initially, I was slightly disappointed with the quality of the Y-300CPX. It’s mainly constructed of white ABS-feel plastic and there are a couple of sharp edges on the outside of the headband. The band does expand, to fit, exposing the metal skeleton of the unit. This in itself doesn’t make the unit poor, but some curved edging or design forethought could avoid the stiff ratcheting of the expansion area trapping fingers when being adjusted for smaller heads. The overall quality of the unit is good, however, with some nice design detailing on the band and cup supports.
Thrustmaster have played well in updating the look and feel of their Y-series headset. The connectivity options make it a good all-rounder for PC gamers, console gamers and headphone lovers everywhere. While the build-quality might initially seem on the cheaper side, it soon becomes clear that the design is optimised for crystal clear and powerful sound and accurately picking up voice with little background noise. The in-line controls are a great addition to those who need that little bit extra configuration and while it might lack the presets and options of the more expensive kit, at an entry price of £39.99, you really cannot go far wrong if you’re in the market for a reasonably-priced, good quality headset.