The first wireless gaming headset for the Xbox One, A50s, is designed with sound quality and comfort in mind.
A good gaming headset is a terrific way to round out your setup; nothing beats good audio for the greatest PC games. There’s something to be said about the more expensive gaming headphones, like the Astro A50s we have here today, whether it’s the added detail or the improved immersion.
The Astro A50 Wireless Gen4 gaming headset is the most recent addition to the Astro line, and it has many of the same design elements as its predecessor. However, the A50’s low price competes with the SteelSeries Artcis Pro wireless headset and Sennhiesers GSP 670s. While audio quality is comparable, the A50s look to be in a class by themselves in terms of comfort.
So, are the Astro A50s worth the exorbitant asking price? How do they compare to the big boys? Let’s look at it more closely.
- Very convenient – Excellent adjustability and some of the softest cushions available
- Create a high-quality product – These are made of high-quality materials and are designed to last.
- A premium gaming headset with excellent audio quality and stereo imagery.
- Indoor-Only Gaming – These won’t be great for anything outside of your workstation at home, thanks to their large design, lack of detachable mic, and lack of Bluetooth.
- Costly – Currently one of the most expensive gaming headphones available.
Let’s take a quick look at the specs and contents to see what you may anticipate. Because of its high quality, the box may nearly be used as a carry case.
The following is what we find inside the box:
- Wireless Headset Astro A50
- USB micro-cable
- Station de base
- Dolby Atmos has a two-year activation period.
- Guide to Getting Started
|Frequency Response of Headphones||Hz range: 20 – 20,000|
|Frequency Response of the Microphone||N/A|
|Life of the Batteries||15 hours or more (advertised)|
|Pattern for Picking Up||Uni-directional|
|Length of the Cable||N/A|
It’s a breeze to put them up after removing them from their pretty opulent package. After all, this will be your wireless receiver. Therefore you’ll need to connect the charging station to your PC through USB. These operate well right out of the box, so you’re in luck if you’re on a console and don’t like downloading software.
There is a bit of charge out of the box, but to get these going, you place them on the dock/ Station de base (they can only go one way) and let them build a charge. Other than that, you should be good to go as soon as you power these on.
When you first glance at the Astro A50 gaming headset, you’ll note that it doesn’t follow the newest trends like the Arctis Pros, which are more subtle and adaptable. Instead, you can see that they are just for gaming, which isn’t a major concern for most people since they still look great.
The previous model’s relatively loud patterns have been replaced with an all-black aesthetic across all materials in this edition. The black hue is complemented with a smidgeon of dark gold from the Astro marking, and the whole appearance is as high-end as the price suggests.
They are rather big, nearly square in form when worn on the head, as are most gaming headsets. The only difference between these and the Gen3 model is that the plastic surrounding the earcups has been altered to seem less angular, giving the Gen4’s a more aesthetically attractive appearance.
Create a high-quality product
The A50 Gen4 Creates a high-quality product that has barely changed from the Gen3, still incredibly robust and well built. The headset is mostly made from dense, high-end plastic, giving these the same flex as the Sennheiser GSP 370s with no chance of breaking or any audible creaks.
These areas high-quality as they seem, with the hinges appearing to be the most durable I’ve ever tried on a gaming headset. The whole outer frame is made of a robust matte black plastic that flexes to fit various head sizes and shapes. There is no give in the plastic frame when you grip it, thus squeezing it causes no creaks or causes alarm.
The headband plastic is technically detached from the earcups’ frame, with each section fastened onto the two sliders. The cable is housed in the center of the sliders, which have a metal feel (though I might be incorrect). The earcups spin 90 degrees off the slider’s axis and include markings for a better fit, which we’ll go over momentarily. The top of the headband is divided, which has been shown to help those who suffer from sweaty heads when gaming. A detachable plastic clip in the center holds the cushioning in place. This small extra component has some more branding and can be replaced when you purchase the mod kit, which I’ll go over in more depth later.
The earcups are encased in the same soft, matte black plastic as the frame, and they look fantastic when coupled with the subtle gold and gray details.
The swivel to the mute mic, which is still as flexible as the previous version, is located on the left earcup. Because the mic is made of lengthy bendy plastic, you have more control over how it is positioned when performing. It’s worth mentioning that the Microphone must be completely vertical with the sliders to be muted. One of my few complaints with the headset was that the mute activation was a bit bothersome, and I’d often not swivel it enough, but you’ll get accustomed to it.
All of the hardware controls for the A50s are located on the right earcup, and I must say, the location is excellent. The power switch, which also includes an LED to show whether the headset is turned on, is located at the top. The Dolby Audio button is underneath the power, boosting your sound if you have Dolby-related software. There’s also an EQ button, which cycles through three preset EQs. The volume scroll wheel is located in the bottom-right corner (in the ideal location). The scroll wheel is limitless, and although I prefer volume wheels that stop, I like the A50’s haptic steps. Finally, it may find the controls for switching between in-game audio and chat audio on the earcup itself. Selecting one or the other will allow you to adjust the volume of that single track, allowing you to spend less time fiddling and more time gaming!
The Create a high-quality product is one of the best I’ve seen with this headset. From the moment you unbox it you know you are in for a premium experience, and the added extras only help. The included charging dock is also constructed of plastic yet has some weight and a sleek-looking display at the front. The dock has been made more compact than the previous generation, with no functionality lost. The Gen4 A50 will now fit on more desks than before while still being a thing of beauty, but more on that later.
Surprisingly, the Astro A50 wireless gaming headset is really comfy. I say surprisingly lightly because you’d think a high-end headset would be comfortable, but after prior failures with the Sennheiser GSP 670s, I was a bit worried.
The A50s are 380 grams, which is a weight that I would ordinarily consider excessively hefty for gaming. These, on the other hand, stay comfy all day thanks to a precise clamp force and what I can only describe as cloud-like cushioning.
These have a near-perfect clamp for comfort, however, they will need to be adjusted while leaning forward or dancing like a lunatic, so be careful they don’t come off your head.
The earcups’ rectangular-shaped openings fit rather big ears, yet the cushioning is so soft that even Garry Lineker could wear them without complaint. The earcups’ soft cushioning is detachable, and they rest on a plate connected to the headset by three magnets. The cushioning is made of a breathable fabric weave that feels lighter than the previous-generation A50s. The cushioning is soft on the skin and performs well for gamers wearing glasses since they seem like they are sinking into your ears and skull.
My ears never reached the inner wall with them, although I’m not sure I’d be able to tell. The inside wall is made of the same soft and velvety cushioned material as the plush cups.
The headband also has some cushioning on the top of the head, but more crucially, it looks to uniformly distribute the headset’s weight, making it feel much lighter than it is when worn.
The Astro A50s feature a little tilt to them for adjustability, allowing them to fit a larger variety of head shapes. The earcups swivel 90 degrees, allowing you to rest them on your shoulders comfortably, and the minimal clamp force ensures that they won’t strangle you.
The sliding adjustment choices are a little tighter than the previous version, but the overall design is similar. In addition, each pole has markings to provide you with a clear idea of how to adjust the headset to fit your head.
I can’t emphasize how comfy they are. They seem to be made to suit practically any skull, and I’m going to have a hard time going back to my everyday drivers after having them for so long; such a great headset.
While the Astro A50s are designed for gaming, they offer a terrific sound profile and low latency, making them perfect for neutral listening.
The sound profile is probably the finest I’ve heard from a gaming headset, with excellent detail, a solid frequency response, and the greatest sound profile from a gaming headset. The bass is deep and prolonged, while the mids and trebles are well distributed. Overall, the sound is apparent and always seems realistic, ideal for gaming.
The seal and the high-quality 40mm neodymium-magnet drivers were included in the immersion. This has been the best audio experience I’ve ever had with a gaming headset; I can’t think of anything negative to say.
The seal was enough to thoroughly immerse me in the music I was hearing, even though they aren’t especially good at isolating. When playing games like Squad, the sound effects came through clearly, but the powerful, distortion-free bass was a sight to see when surrounded by gun and mortar fire. When I was playing CSGO, locating opponent location cues was a breeze, and I heard noises I hadn’t heard before, giving me a distinct aural edge. Regardless of whatsoever game I was playing. The stereo image was perfect; these are perfect for gaming.
Installing Dolby Atmos improved the theatrical experience and drew you further into single-player campaign objectives, particularly during cut scenes. However, what impressed me was the performance right out of the box; they sounded terrific without any software installed, with vocalists and lead instruments faithfully replicated.
The game/chat split audio took some getting accustomed to at first, with the conversation mix in the front and the game audio in the background. However, the game audio isn’t softer; it’s conveyed to my ears differently than the Sennheiser GSP 370s.
Finally, unlike the inexpensive Corsair HS70s, the A50s never dropped out or made a hiss, albeit the leakage isn’t ideal, so avoid using them in quiet places.
A swivel to mute, uni-directional, voice isolating microphone is included with the Astro A50 gaming headset.
The boom microphone isn’t removable, but it’s quite clear. This mic is comparable to, if not superior to, the Arctis Pros ClearCast mic and outperforms the Sennheiser variants. It may be on par with the Corsair Virtuoso SE mic in terms of clarity, but it isn’t easy to see the difference. The mic has a rich sound, and I had no difficulties utilizing it in Discord or in-game conversation. The recording quality is excellent and sounds somewhat better than the previous generation, but it doesn’t imply you should use it for streaming; in that case, I’d choose the standalone mic.
The A50 mic’s noise cancellation and handling are excellent. The mic effectively isolates my speech from surrounding noise and provides crisp, clear orders to the voice server. In addition, you may experiment with four different noise gate settings when utilizing the program, giving you more flexibility.
The mic is among the finest I’ve tried, and although you wouldn’t want to use it on your live broadcast, you may be able to get away with it if you’re in need.
When dealing with a premium gaming headset, you can expect many features and little “quality of life” extras. Aside from the amazing Create a high-quality product, high-level comfort, and great audio/mic Performance, the Astro A50 Wireless gaming headset isn’t short of a few extras to tempt you into an upgrade.
The headset connects wirelessly to the Station de base via a 2.4GHz frequency. The Station de base doesn’t just look great. It features a lot of inputs while also wirelessly charging your headset.
The variant we have here is fully compatible with PC and Xbox, which can be switched at the back. Furthermore, the Station de base will indicate the display you are currently using. Finally, the Station debase is advertised as locked to a specific console, but either variant’s headset can connect to both Station debases.
At the back of the Station de base, we see a line in/out, meaning you can run your speaker setup through the dock and not have to faff around with the Windows settings. There is an aux port, and we also see a USB port at the back, giving you more than enough options to play with.
Unfortunately, the Astro A50s are solely wireless, but I never ran out of power with the charging port on my desk.
Life of the Batteries
The Astro A50s feature a lithium-ion single-cell battery that can be recharged, providing up to 15 hours or more (advertised) of uninterrupted use. I managed to get about 16 hours out of a full charge, and it took around 4 hours to reach that full battery in one go. While 15-17 hours of Life of the Batteries are miles away from the Sennhisers GSP 370s 100 hours, it’s enough that you won’t have to worry about this dropping. Thanks to the Station de base being so convenient, you automatically put these on, and they instantly charge, giving me unlimited power.
Like the previous version, this headset has an auto-off timer that turns the headset off after eight minutes of inactivity. The tiniest movement will turn them back on, so as soon as you grasp them, the sound will start playing as soon as you put them on your head.
There is a micro-USB charging port on the headset if you ever need to assess these away from the Station debase, but the dock does a stellar job.
Modkit is now available.
The Astro A50 has a unique customization function. It seems goofy, but it has no effect on the headset’s performance or usefulness, so it’s a pleasant addition. In addition, the synthetic leather mod kit may be purchased to replace the ear cushions and headband, enhancing noise isolation. I’m not a fan of the mod kit, but it’s nice to have alternatives, and the fact that these ear cushions are so readily changed adds to their durability.
You’ll need to purchase the gen4 mod kit since gen3 ear cushions don’t seem to work with the most recent model.
These sound fantastic right out of the package, as previously said. Astro Audio V2 has been used to tune them, resulting in accurate sound reproduction and true-to-life image. With Dolby Audio and built-in MixAmp technology, you can enhance your audio experience and immerse yourself in the most cinematic games available.
The Astro Command Center is fairly simple to understand. The EQ is fantastic, and you can program it to replace one of the presets by assigning it to the EQ button on the right earcup. Unfortunately, unlike the previous gen3 model, you can’t modify the mic’s frequency response, but it works OK and isn’t anything I’d change.
Without a doubt, this is a high-end gaming headset. The wireless performance is outstanding, much outshining the competitors. The SteelSeries Arctis Pros have a case to be made since they are a more versatile pair. Compared to the Arctis Pros, the A50s leak, don’t have Bluetooth, and are typically big, so wearing them on your commute isn’t a good idea. Regardless, both headsets have similar sound profiles, and even though they are closed-back, both provide an excellent sound stage.
The comfort on the Astro A50 stands out from the rest, and despite your ears getting a little warm over time, the cushioning is some of the best I have used. The Create a high-quality product again stands out from Corsair, Sennheiser, and SteelSeries; these are built to last, and you can instantly tell.
The Astro A50 Wireless Gen4 gaming headset is a must-have if you can afford the hefty asking price. They’ve completely engrossed me in games where audio is king, and I’ve never heard so many positional clues as I have with these on. So if you’re searching for a gaming-only headset, I’d recommend the Astro A50s.
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