Peripherals

AOC GH300 RGB Surround Gaming Headset Review

A Closer Look & Performance

They say first impressions go a long way, and this headset made a great first impression as it’s a very attractive design. However, it’s hard to ignore the similarities to a Hyper X Cloud Alpha headset, and a few from Corsair and Razer I might add too, but that’s no bad thing. It’s borrowing key design features that I like from a lot of other extremely popular headsets… if it works, use it.

The design does look good though, and I love the classic blend of black and red on the headband. The brushed metal mount looks stunning and provides a fantastic contrast. However, and this is only a minor thing, I do think having a bold colour on a product that has RGB can lead to some pretty clashing aesthetics, for example, a green LED light won’t look as good, and I’d be inclined to set the built-in RGB to just plain red to match the aesthetic.

And here you see that RGB, see what I mean, blue/green just clashes a bit.

But red, oh yeah, that’s where it’s at. That being said, RGB on headphones is cuckoo bananas in my opinion, but hey, you can always turn it off.

The GH300’s ear cups are nice and large though, and while there is a mesh look on the back of the ear cup, it’s purely aesthetic, as they’re a closed-back design.

There are some large PU leather ear pads too, with a nice layer of memory foam padding. These pads, combined with the closed-back ear cup design will help lock in the sound of the drivers and block out some ambient noise also. Generally, this results in a better bass response too, which is why I always prefer a closed-up design like this rather than a breathable fabric/open-back design, but that’s subjective, of course.

The headband looks really nice too, with a full arch of padding from each side, and it’s all stitched in with some fetching red thread, to match the metal extension arms.

Speaking of which, there’s a good range of adjustment in the arms, allowing just about anyone to get a comfortable fit; it even fits my freaking enormous head (few headsets do, if I’m honest).

The headset is hard-wired, and while I strongly prefer a wireless or even a headset with a detachable cable design, at this price range, I’m willing to live with a fixed cable design. One nice feature, however, is the on-cable controller, which allows you to turn the LED lighting on/off, mute the microphone, or adjust the volume levels. It’s not a major addition, but it’s a welcome one overall.

When it comes to performance, the GH300 headset is packing a pair of powerful 50mm drivers that pack a respectable amount of punch. There’s a good thump from the explosions of GTA Online griefers off in the distance, tank fire in Battlefield V, right up until I realised it was crap and installed it… the game that is, not the headset. And I listen to a lot of electronic music and death metal these days, and again, the headsets low-end has a toe-tapping and headbanging quality that I can live with.

There’s a lot going on in the mid-range too, with a nice crunch and warm textures to enjoy in heavy guitars and shouty vocal tracks. The top end was a little dry sounding maybe, not quite bringing the crystal clarity that I would expect of a Hi-Res supporting headset, but certainly punching above what I would expect on a £40 headset, so really, nothing to complain about. Pro-tip, dial in a little EQ to boost the high-end a little bit, and it really opens up the sound.

The virtual surround does exactly what it promises, and works well, that being said, virtual surround processing has been awesome for years now, as the modern algorithms have been well refined. However, it does require the AOC software, which is a little basic and in need of some improvement. For the most part though, if you have Dolby Atmos Headphone, or DTS Headphone:X installed on your PC, you can use either of those just as well too, so you have options.

The microphone is detachable, albeit, if you’re like me, if you take it off, you’ll never bloody find it again. I use my microphone so infrequently these days, and when I do, it’s a desktop standing model, but hey, it never hurts to have an extra one. The clarity is decent enough, nothing to shout about, nothing to complain about, and competitive enough in this price range.

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Peter Donnell

As a child still in my 30's (but not for long), I spend my day combining my love of music and movies with a life-long passion for gaming, from arcade classics and retro consoles to the latest high-end PC and console games. So it's no wonder I write about tech and test the latest hardware while I enjoy my hobbies!

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