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The 10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops Under $1000- Play on the Go

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ASUS TUF Gaming FX705

What makes a laptop a ‘gaming’ one? Well, that will be its dedicated GPU. While most competitive gaming laptops cost more than $2,000, it doesn’t mean that you cannot play your favorite games on a sub $1,000 price point.

If you are looking for a portable gaming machine that allows you to play your favorite games on the go, then look no further because I will recommend the best cheap gaming laptops in 2020 that are under a grand.

Best Gaming Laptops Under $1000

1.MSI GF65 Thin RTX 2060

MSI GF65 Thin RTX 2060

Price: $999

The best way to start an article about cheap gaming laptops under $1000 is to talk about one that costs a little under that amount.

The MSI GF65 Thin is the best gaming laptop on this list simply because of its GPU: The RTX 2060.

You see, what makes a gaming laptop a ‘gaming’ machine is its GPU and the RTX 2060 simply cannot be beaten by other GPUs at this price point.

For those of you who do not know, the RTX 2060 is packed with a lot of features, including a hefty 6GB of VRAM that allows you to play even the most demanding games at considerable framerates.

Alongside its competitive GPU is an Intel Core i5-9300H CPU and a pretty good 512GB SSD storage.

It’s got a really nice keyboard with red backlighting and the screen uses an IPS display that is capable of 120Hz refresh rate.

If you want the best gaming laptop under $1,000, the MSI GF65 is the one that you’re looking for.

2.Dell G3 15

Dell G3 15

Price: $799

The Dell G3 15 is a respectable gaming laptop that has a sub-$800 price. It comes with the Nvidia Geforce GTX 1650 GPU with 4GB of VRAM. While it may not be enough when it comes to playing AAA games at high frame rates, it should be good enough to run it nonetheless.

Its performance package includes an Intel Core i5-9300H, 8GB of RAM, 128GB SSD with an included 1TB HDD for mass storage.

The keyboard layout is a standard one that is complete with a Numpad on the side that is ideal for purposes other than gaming. Its backlighting can also be configured using the Alienware Command Center.

Even though there is a lot to love here, there are some compromises that have to be made to fit this laptop into the budget category.

For one, the 15.6-inch display is more than adequate, though it is a bit dull compared to others in the market.

Second, its included HDD, while hefty at 1TB storage space, is only a 5400RPM variant which means that your games might be slow to load if you install them in it.

Despite its shortcomings, this gaming laptop is still pretty solid for its price. If you can spend a bit more, you may want to consider the Dell G3 15 SE instead.

3.Lenovo IdeaPad L340

Lenovo IdeaPad L340

Price: $899

Originally sold at $1,200, the Lenovo IdeaPad is one of my most solid recommendations simply because it’s got the performance package that budget-conscious consumers will love.

Its GPU is still an Nvidia Geforce GTX 1650, but its processor is an i7-9750H coupled with 8GB of RAM, and 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD combo. The CPU itself makes this gaming laptop ideal for productivity tasks as well.

This laptop also comes with a 15.6-inch IPS display that produces punchy and vibrant colors than a TN panel. The only downside is that its refresh rate is maxed at 60Hz, though looking for a high refresh rate panel at this price point is hard to do.

Even if its GPU is middling at best, its 9-hour battery life ensures that you can game on the go without having to worry about the unit suddenly dying on you.

For the price, the Lenovo IdeaPad L340 is definitely a worthy consideration.

4.Acer Predator Helios 300

Acer Predator Helios 300

Price: $949

This gaming laptop was originally priced at $1,300 but has since received a massive price cut in favor of the new ones that are going to be released later in the year.

The Acer Predator Helios 300 is a pretty solid performer at a sub-$1,000 price point. Its most standout feature is its 144Hz display which is somewhat unheard of in an entry-level gaming laptop.

To be able to enjoy the 144hz display, the Acer Predator Helios 300 is fitted with some pretty awesome specs for the price.

For its GPU, you’ve got an Nvidia Geforce GTX 1660Ti- a 6GB VRAM graphics card that is usually found in laptops over $1,000.

Its GPU is the Intel Core i7-9750H which is ideal for productivity tasks. You also have a pretty good amount of RAM at 16GB and a 256GB SSD.

To be honest, the only thing that is a letdown on this device is its storage capacity as a 256GB SSD may not be enough to store all of your favorite games. But, at $949, you cannot really complain.

5.Acer Nitro 5

Acer Nitro 5

Price: $749

All of the laptops that were mentioned above have a 15-inch form factor and while that is considered to be the best middle ground when it comes to display size, some people would want more.

If you want a much bigger screen that is able to output some amazing visuals, the Acer Nitro 5 has got you covered.

It’s got a really big 17.3-inch IPS display that is known for its amazing color reproduction. Though it is not capable of high-refresh-rate gaming, this budget laptop pretty much makes up for it just on its video quality alone.

Aside from its display, the performance package of the Acer Nitro 5 is no slouch. It has an Nvidia Geforce GTX 1650 graphics card coupled with an Intel Core i5-9300H mobile processor, 8GB of RAM, and 512GB PCIe SSD.

The storage device is actually pretty good because it makes use of the PCIe slot as opposed to SATA. That means that your games will load considerably faster than a SATA SSD ever can.

While its bezels are thin, you do have to take note that this gaming laptop is pretty hefty at 5.73 pounds, so you may want to consider this before buying.

But, if you do not mind the weight, the Acer Nitro 5 is definitely what I would buy if I want a larger display.

6.MSI GF63 Thin 9SC

MSI GF63 Thin 9SC

Price: $950

Most of the games nowadays make use of 4-6 CPU cores, as well as your discrete graphics solution. In that regard, you want a gaming laptop that has more than 4 cores just to be safe and that is why I recommend the MSI GF63 Thin 9SC.

This is a 15.6-inch laptop that is fitted with a GTX 1650 GPU and an Intel Core i7-9750H processor. In addition, it also comes with a hefty 16GB of RAM and 512 NVMe SSD for faster loading times.

MSI really knows how to make an aesthetically pleasing laptop and this one delivers. It has an all-black chassis with red keyboard backlighting.

The display is a 15-6 inch IPS screen and although it is just 60Hz, it has pretty thin bezels to ensure that you get the most screen real estate.

My only gripe with this laptop is MSI’s Dragon Center. That is because most of the time, it works as intended, while in others, it is hit or miss.

Still, the MSI GF63 Thin 9SC deserves to be on this list.

7.HP Pavilion 15z

HP Pavilion 15z

Price: $640

While a lot of people want laptops that are pretty high-specced, they usually come with a gamer aesthetic which means that using such a device might not be ideal in professional work environments. However, the next one is definitely unique.

The HP Pavilion 15z is quite an affordable gaming laptop that has a professional aesthetic. It doesn’t have that gamer appeal that is evident in others, but make no mistake about it- this laptop can game.

It is fitted with the Radeon Vega 10 graphics processor, AMD Ryzen 7 3700U processor, 16GB of RAM, and 512GB NVMe SSD.

The screen is a 15.6-inch IPS panel that also acts as a touchscreen as well- perfect for productivity tasks while you’re in the office.

While its gaming performance is okay, its processor is actually pretty good when it comes to video editing or CPU-intensive workloads.

So, if you want a subtle gaming laptop that can still game, the HP Pavilion 15z is tough to beat, especially at its price point.

8.Dell G7 15

Dell G7 15

Price: $999

Another gaming powerhouse under $1,000, the Dell G7 15 goes head-to-head with my top recommendation.

It has pretty respectable specs. It has the Nvidia Geforce GTX 1660Ti GPU, Intel Core i7-9750H, 16GB of RAM, 256GB PCIe SSD + 1TB HDD, and has a pretty vibrant 15.6-inch IPS display to top it off.

The laptop also has a bevy of ports so that you can easily plug in your USB devices without a problem. Coupled with its amazing WiFi card, you will never have any problems when playing online games.

Probably, the only thing that I consider a negative here is that its display panel doesn’t have a high refresh rate. However, it pretty much makes up for its thanks to its vivid display.

9.ASUS TUF Gaming FX705

ASUS TUF Gaming FX705

Price: $820

ASUS is one of the most reputable companies when it comes to creating PC components. They not only have gaming monitors, but they also dabble into creating their own graphics cards, power supply units, and even gaming peripherals.

The company’s TUF lineup is pretty much their own gaming line that also has the durability to last a really long time and this particular model delivers on that front.

The ASUS TUF Gaming FX705 is equipped with a quad-core AMD Ryzen 5 3550H CPU, an AMD Radeon RX560X graphics processor, 512GB NVMe SSD, and 8GB of RAM.

Most other gaming laptops out there do not have a robust cooling solution and that is why most of them tend to overheat after a considerable amount of time. That is not the case with this TUF laptop.

Thanks to its dual-fan cooling solution, the laptop remains relatively cool even during intense gaming sessions. Its anti-dust technology also ensures that the fans do not need cleaning for a long time.

The keyboard is pretty nice to type on and it also has configurable backlighting to enable you to see everything even in dimly-lit environments.

Although its 17.3-inch IPS display panel is great from a content consumption standpoint, some gamers might be turned off by the fact that it is not a high-refresh-rate screen.

Still, I wouldn’t count the ASUS TUF Gaming FX705 out because it is a really appealing gaming laptop at this price.

10.Dell G3 Max-Q

Dell G3 Max-Q

Price: $990

The Dell G3 Max-Q was originally priced at $1,459 but has received a considerable price cut and is now priced at $990 (which is a steal, in my opinion).

This gaming laptop has a pretty good Nvidia Geforce GTX 1660Ti GPU, an Intel Core i5-9300H CPU, 8GB RAM, and a 512GB NVMe SSD.

Its 15.6-inch IPS display has an anti-glare coating to ensure that it protects your eyes if you intend to have a marathon gaming session.

The laptop has a predominantly black design, though it has blue accents here and there to make it even more appealing.

What do I dislike about the laptop? Well, aside from the fact that its display doesn’t have a fast refresh rate, its RAM could be doubled for better performance.

But, since it has received a huge price cut, I would say that the Dell G3 Max-Q is still worth considering.

What to Consider When Buying a Gaming Laptop

A gaming laptop is different from a regular laptop, especially since it is fitted with better specs to allow people to play games on the go.

Below are just some of the most important considerations when buying one:

1.GPU

This is what makes a laptop a ‘gaming’ one. The GPU handles all of the graphical load that your game needs.

A good gaming laptop should be fitted with a competitive GPU that can handle all games, albeit frame rates may be different depending on the title.

If you absolutely have to choose a budget gaming laptop, the GPU is one that you should definitely set your eyes on.

2.CPU

The CPU works in tandem with the GPU to help you play your games at considerable frame rates. Some games would require more processing power from the CPU while others barely need it.

Since most games are graphically-intensive nowadays, you should consider getting a laptop that has at least a 4-core processor. Ideally, you want to think about getting a 4-8-core part, though having the former should be adequate in most scenarios.

3.RAM

RAM is also another important factor to consider. Ideally, you want to get 8GB of RAM as a minimum standard, though if you are going to get one, make sure that you are not running any other application in the background.

Some processes like opening a Google Chrome web browser even with just 3 tabs can eat up a lot of system memory, so always bear that in mind.

The ideal solution would be to get 16GB of RAM just to be on the safe side, but that is hard to come by when it comes to budget gaming laptops.

4.Storage

Without a doubt, you should only be considering laptops that have an SSD on it. Having an HDD along with an SSD should be considered as an added bonus and may not be required in most setups.

The reason why you’d want to settle for an SSD as opposed to an HDD is that the former is much faster when it comes to both read and write speeds.

You can see why the SSD is much better than an HDD if you load a game using either of them.

NVMe or PCIe SSDs work much better from a performance standpoint, though getting a laptop that is fitted with one may mean that you need to spend more. A SATA SSD should be okay for most people.

5.Display

For a gaming machine, most people would opt for high refresh rate displays. Although that is all good, it is hard to come by for a gaming laptop that has a sub-$1,000 price.

6.Battery Life

Part of what makes a laptop more appealing than a gaming PC is its portability. In other words, some people want to play their favorite games anywhere they please. For this purpose, you will need a laptop that has a considerable amount of battery capacity.

Ideally, you want a laptop that can at least last for 5 hours before needing an adapter to charge.

7.Keyboard

A good gaming laptop should also have a pretty good keyboard. While a mechanical keyboard is hard to find in a laptop that is under $1,000, this is still worth noting.

8.Other Features

The above-mentioned things are definitely the ones that you should consider first when buying a gaming laptop. However, having some nifty additions is also good as well.

Some notable additions include keyboard backlighting, mechanical keyboard, a better trackpad, touchscreen display, better cooling solutions, just to name a few.

Keep in mind that while added features are welcome, they might also be the reason why the price goes higher than expected.

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Amazon Luna- Everything You Need to Know About Amazon’s Cloud Gaming Service

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Amazon Luna

It seems that cloud gaming is the future as a lot of companies are pooling their resources just to make things happen.

Amazon Luna is Amazon’s foray into cloud gaming and it is going to be available soon. Read further to find out more information about this new experience.

Channel-based Platform

Amazon Luna Platform

Google has paved the way for cloud gaming to come to the fore with the release of the Stadia not too long ago. Although it was mired with a lot of different issues, it seems that the company has found a way to make things work.

Amazon also wants in on the action and although there are some similarities with Luna and Stadia, there are also some stark differences as well.

Before I begin, I just want to explain the concept of cloud gaming. Basically, instead of downloading games to your gaming PC or whatever platform you choose to install them, you will just stream those games using data centers that are scattered all over the world.

It should go without saying that you need to have a fast internet connection to make this happen and so that you will not experience high latency (which was a huge problem when Stadia launched).

That being said, the premise of Google Stadia is that you need to either purchase an individual game so that you can play it at any time (forever) or you could subscribe to the monthly plan and play the games that are on offer every month (and continue to play them so long as you’re subscribed).

With Amazon Luna, you will be presented with different channels that you can subscribe to. Each of these channels has different games on offer which makes this quite appealing for game developers to show their mettle.

Right now, the platform is still in beta and there are only two channels available at the moment- Amazon’s own Luna Plus and the Ubisoft Channel. The latter will have 50 games that you can play right away and more Ubisoft games will be added in the future.

Keep in mind that this channel-based system makes it so that developers can price their services accordingly. It remains to be seen how much Ubisoft will charge individual users, so stay tuned for that.

1080p and 4K Gaming

Just like Google Stadia, Amazon Luna will support both 1080p and 4K resolutions. Of course, the latter would be more taxing and you will need a fast internet connection to be able to enjoy high-fidelity gaming. I suggest that you get a WiFi 6 router and a compatible device to make the most out of your experience.

Cross-Platform Support

Amazon Luna Cross-Platform

Unlike Stadia, Amazon Luna is more flexible in that it supports a lot of different devices. Not only can you play on your PC, but you can also choose to play it using your iOS devices, Android phones, and you can even utilize the company’s own FireTV devices as well.

Now, there has been this entire debacle about Apple’s 30% cut on every app in its App store but the good news is that Amazon can circumvent that.

You see, when you are going to play on your iOS devices, the application will actually be a PWA or a Progressive Web App. Basically, the game that you want to play will run in a contained web browser instead of it being an actual application that you install in your device. This bypasses the whole 30% cut issue which is a good thing.

NVIDIA Hardware Use

According to a recent Steam survey, the vast majority of PC users are all using NVIDIA graphics cards. This is a good thing for Amazon Luna because it means that it can support a lot more people.

That is because the company’s cloud gaming service will use NVIDIA GPUs instead of AMD cards (which Stadia uses for graphics processing).

Supposing that Amazon Luna will be more popular than any other cloud gaming service out there, NVIDIA will enjoy huge profits as a result.

Can Be Streamed to Popular Sites

Amazon Luna Controller

Twitch is arguably the most popular streaming platform today and Amazon is looking to forge a partnership with the said service to allow you to stream your games to the popular website.

The said platform is widely used as a means of generating revenue- something that is quite popular today due to the recent pandemic.

This move also makes it appealing as well as more and more content creators can use Amazon Luna to reach a broader audience.

New Controller with Alexa Support

Amazon Luna Controller 2

Just like Google Stadia, Amazon Luna also requires you to get a special controller. The good thing is that the control will have a microphone so that you can use Alexa for specific voice commands.

What’s interesting about the Luna’s controller is that it is completely connected to the Cloud, which means that you do not have to pair it with the specific device you are going to use to play games online.

According to Amazon’s website, it should have a grippy texture and will feature low-friction thumbsticks that provide maximum performance across the board. By using the controller’s microphone, you can actually tell Alexa to fire up the specific game that you want to play, so long as it is inside the channel that you’ve subscribed to.

Conclusion

Amazon Luna is quite enticing, at least, on paper. It is shaping up to be a better cloud gaming service compared to its competitors but the service is still in beta, so there are more things that need ironing out before its official release.

Right now, there are only two channels that are available and Ubisoft hasn’t imposed its pricing yet. The Amazon Luna channel is priced at $6.99

If you are interested in getting in on the action, you can be an early beta tester by subscribing to the service.

Amazon Luna will be out sometime in October.

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Acer Nitro XV340CK Review- A Greatly Competitive Ultrawide Gaming Monitor Under $500

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Acer Nitro XV340CK Review

Ultrawide monitors used to be a niche display in that the only people who work on productivity tasks and creative workloads usually buy them.

Fortunately, the display technology has evolved and gamers, too, can enjoy a much wider screen.

Today, I am going to review the Acer Nitro XV340CK which is a 34-inch ultrawide gaming monitor that is priced competitively. 

Design

Even though this is marketed as a gaming monitor, the Acer Nitro XV340CK actually doesn’t look like it. It looks simple and I love the aesthetics, especially if you want to place this in your office.

The only thing that might make you think that this is a gaming display is that red accent that you can find on the base of the monitor but that’s about it.

Anyway, let’s start with the stand. Aside from the aforementioned red accent, the stand provides good ergonomics.

It gives you the ability to swivel the monitor a complete 360 degrees, you can tilt it to 35 degrees back and you can adjust the height up to 5.9 inches. Because this is an ultrawide monitor, you cannot put this thing in portrait mode.

I love the fact that this monitor has slim bezels. At only 0.4 inches, you can place another monitor right beside it and it wouldn’t really take a lot of screen real estate at all.

The overall build quality is good. Despite the fact that it doesn’t feel premium, at least when compared to the best gaming monitors out there, it still feels sturdy nevertheless.

For the ports, you get two Displayport 1.4 ports, two HDMI 2.0 ports, and two USB 3.0 ports. Due to the wealth of ports on offer, you can use this for your PC or your game console.

The only thing that might be cumbersome for some users is that the OSD controls are situated at the back of the monitor- particularly on the bottom right side. The buttons are also a bit smaller than usual, so you may have a hard time pressing the right ones.

Display

Acer Nitro XV340CK Review 2020

The Acer Nitro XV340CK has a 34-inch IPS display with a resolution of 3440 x 1440 and an aspect ratio of 21:9. It is the same as other ultrawide gaming monitors that you can find on the market so there is no problem with that.

You do have the option to enable the picture-in-picture mode so that you can divide the display in two if you wish to fire up two different programs at the same time. This is why it is not only a handy gaming monitor, but it can also be used for office work as well.

Its contrast and brightness leave much to be desired. With a native contrast ratio of 1048:1 and peak SDR brightness of only 247 nits, it is not the best display when it comes to these things.

However, its redeeming quality is that its colors are accurate. After calibration, I got 95% sRGB, 82% AdobeRGB, and 81% DCI-P3. It is relatively color accurate and it would have been nice for creative workloads, but its peak brightness just falls short of making it an ideal display for such use-cases.

It is also worth noting that if you are in a well-lit room that the brightness could be a huge issue. The good thing is that the display’s matte finish can help reduce glare significantly, though you will still find that it is not bright enough in some situations.

I am surprised by the fact that there is literally no color bleed on the Acer Nitro XV340CK. This is unheard of, especially since ultrawide monitors are notorious for this.

Performance

Sure, its peak brightness and contrast could have improved, but gamers are not especially focused on those things. If anything, it is the performance of the display that usually takes the cake and I am happy to report that you won’t be disappointed with the Nitro XV340CK.

Normally, with IPS panels, they tend to not have a good response time, but that is actually not the case here. At just 5.3ms, it is definitely one of the best out there even when compared to other, more premium models.

How about input lag? This is a speed monitor and as expected, input lag is minimal. At just 4.2ms, I am really blown away by the performance of this thing. Every keypress on your gaming keyboard will register almost immediately and that is really great from a competitive standpoint.

It is also worth noting that its 144Hz refresh rate is ideal, especially since most gamers are clamoring for high refresh rate displays anyway.

This is a FreeSync gaming monitor and you can enable this variable refresh rate feature in both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards.

To get a hold of the said features, it is important for you to know that you should use the DisplayPort cable that is included in the box. There is also an included HDMI cable if you want to use this display for your Xbox or Playstation consoles.

Acer Nitro XV340CK

Verdict

With all of those things being said, if I were to ask you how much this thing costs, what will be your guess? If you’ve guessed around $700, you’re wrong.

The Acer Nitro XV340CK is priced at just $450! At that price, you are getting a relatively color-accurate monitor, a really fast display with minimal input lag, and a vast number of ports that you can use for your PC or game consoles.

Sure, its contrast and peak brightness could have been improved, but if you are talking about raw gaming performance, the Acer Nitro XV340CK blows other ultrawide gaming monitors out of the way.

Just make sure that you have a nice gaming PC for this thing to work nicely. Other than that, I highly recommend the Acer Nitro XV340CK for its price and performance.

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HyperX Cloud Stinger S- A Comfortable 7.1 Surround Sound Gaming Headset

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HyperX Cloud Stinger S Review

As an audiophile, I’ve always loved HyperX’s gaming audio solution. They are inexpensive and for the price, you are actually getting sound quality that you normally would only hear from expensive products.

In today’s article, I am going to review the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. This is a budget offering that aims to improve upon the original Cloud Stinger with the inclusion of a 7.1 surround sound option.

Do I recommend this headset? Find out later on in the article.

Design

The HyperX Cloud Stinger S is actually quite similar to the original version. It has the same pleather ear cups that envelope your ears quite nicely and the clamping force of the headset itself is actually quite okay.

I’ve been receiving reports that there are some people that have problems with the tightness or, shall I say, how loose this thing can be. But that will probably be a result of the size of your head and not the actual product itself. For me, the fit was okay, but your mileage may vary.

Although this thing is predominantly made in plastic, the overall build quality is good, though I would advise you not to throw this headset when you lose a round in a MOBA game or first-person shooter.

There is a microphone on this headset and just like the original, it is not removable. It would have been nice if you could remove it when you are not using it because even if you fold the microphone (which also acts as a way of muting it), you will still see it which can be annoying at times.

This thing is quite simple and all you have for the controls is the volume slider that is located on the right ear cup. 

While other HyperX gaming headsets come with a carrying pouch, I am sad to say that the HyperX Cloud Stinger S doesn’t have one.

All you get in the box aside from the headset is a USB dongle that is attached to a relatively long cable and some documentation. And, since you use this thing completely wired, it can also be used in your Playstation or other game consoles as well.

The 3.5mm analog cable should be inserted in the USB dongle if you wish to use its 7.1 surround sound implementation, but if you are just going to watch movies or play non-competitive games, I suggest that you do not use it.

Audio Quality

HyperX Cloud Stinger S Review 2020

There are two modes that you can utilize if you are going to use the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. You can use its 3.5mm headphone jack and enjoy stereo sound or you could insert that into the included USB dongle and use the 7.1 surround sound feature.

Keep in mind that if you are going to use the 7.1 output that it is only supported on the PC since you will need the NGENUITY software to enable it.

That being said, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S’ sound signature leans more toward being bright and with a little emphasis on the bass. This seems to be the preference of the majority of gamers since lower frequencies can make those in-game sounds pop-out more.

I also love the mid frequencies as it is quite balanced as well. I’ve had no problems listening to in-game dialog and when I am using the microphone, it just works really well.

Although the high frequencies are okay, I would say that it is the weakest of the bunch, though not so much as to diminish the overall sound quality. You will still hear the sibilance of the cymbals and lead guitars, but it is not as pronounced as the lower and mid frequencies.

As for the 7.1 surround sound, you should enable it in the companion software and it is only available when you are on the PC.

Anyway, its surround sound is okay but I say this because it is a budget gaming headset. If you compare it to the more premium ones, this is subpar at best. Still, you could enable it in your favorite games but I will advise against it if you are just listening to music or watching movies.

Despite a relatively good clamping force, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S doesn’t do so well in terms of sound isolation. People around me can still hear what I was listening to, so this might not be ideal if you are playing at night and there are people sleeping.

Microphone Quality

HyperX Cloud Stinger S

There is usually this notion that budget headsets have horrible microphones but not the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. In fact, I would go on to say that it has one of the better ones on the market.

Instead of sounding tinny, the microphone quality of the Cloud Stinger S is full-bodied and my teammates can hear every word I said without any problems.

The volume of the microphone is also quite good as well. Normally, with budget offerings, you tend to sound a bit ‘too far’ but that is not the case here.

Overall, I am quite pleased with the microphone. The only thing that I do not like is that the flippable microphone may impede your vision sometimes, but I think that you can adjust to this.

Verdict

For a budget headset, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S is definitely one of the better sounding ones. I also love the fact that the microphone’s quality is top-notch and it can even go head-to-head against its more premium counterparts.

I am just a bit disappointed that you do not get a carrying pouch with this one because other HyperX gaming headsets have them. But, this is a minor inconvenience.

I did not feel the need to talk about the NGENUITY software mainly because it is pretty barebones and all you can do with it is to enable the 7.1 surround sound, adjust the volume and microphone, and that’s about it. There is no equalizer present which is quite odd.

Still, for what it is giving you, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S is highly recommended. This thing costs $60.

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The 10 Best Cheap Gaming Laptops Under $1000- Play on the Go

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ASUS TUF Gaming FX705

What makes a laptop a ‘gaming’ one? Well, that will be its dedicated GPU. While most competitive gaming laptops cost more than $2,000, it doesn’t mean that you cannot play your favorite games on a sub $1,000 price point.

If you are looking for a portable gaming machine that allows you to play your favorite games on the go, then look no further because I will recommend the best cheap gaming laptops in 2020 that are under a grand.

Best Gaming Laptops Under $1000

1.MSI GF65 Thin RTX 2060

MSI GF65 Thin RTX 2060

Price: $999

The best way to start an article about cheap gaming laptops under $1000 is to talk about one that costs a little under that amount.

The MSI GF65 Thin is the best gaming laptop on this list simply because of its GPU: The RTX 2060.

You see, what makes a gaming laptop a ‘gaming’ machine is its GPU and the RTX 2060 simply cannot be beaten by other GPUs at this price point.

For those of you who do not know, the RTX 2060 is packed with a lot of features, including a hefty 6GB of VRAM that allows you to play even the most demanding games at considerable framerates.

Alongside its competitive GPU is an Intel Core i5-9300H CPU and a pretty good 512GB SSD storage.

It’s got a really nice keyboard with red backlighting and the screen uses an IPS display that is capable of 120Hz refresh rate.

If you want the best gaming laptop under $1,000, the MSI GF65 is the one that you’re looking for.

2.Dell G3 15

Dell G3 15

Price: $799

The Dell G3 15 is a respectable gaming laptop that has a sub-$800 price. It comes with the Nvidia Geforce GTX 1650 GPU with 4GB of VRAM. While it may not be enough when it comes to playing AAA games at high frame rates, it should be good enough to run it nonetheless.

Its performance package includes an Intel Core i5-9300H, 8GB of RAM, 128GB SSD with an included 1TB HDD for mass storage.

The keyboard layout is a standard one that is complete with a Numpad on the side that is ideal for purposes other than gaming. Its backlighting can also be configured using the Alienware Command Center.

Even though there is a lot to love here, there are some compromises that have to be made to fit this laptop into the budget category.

For one, the 15.6-inch display is more than adequate, though it is a bit dull compared to others in the market.

Second, its included HDD, while hefty at 1TB storage space, is only a 5400RPM variant which means that your games might be slow to load if you install them in it.

Despite its shortcomings, this gaming laptop is still pretty solid for its price. If you can spend a bit more, you may want to consider the Dell G3 15 SE instead.

3.Lenovo IdeaPad L340

Lenovo IdeaPad L340

Price: $899

Originally sold at $1,200, the Lenovo IdeaPad is one of my most solid recommendations simply because it’s got the performance package that budget-conscious consumers will love.

Its GPU is still an Nvidia Geforce GTX 1650, but its processor is an i7-9750H coupled with 8GB of RAM, and 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD combo. The CPU itself makes this gaming laptop ideal for productivity tasks as well.

This laptop also comes with a 15.6-inch IPS display that produces punchy and vibrant colors than a TN panel. The only downside is that its refresh rate is maxed at 60Hz, though looking for a high refresh rate panel at this price point is hard to do.

Even if its GPU is middling at best, its 9-hour battery life ensures that you can game on the go without having to worry about the unit suddenly dying on you.

For the price, the Lenovo IdeaPad L340 is definitely a worthy consideration.

4.Acer Predator Helios 300

Acer Predator Helios 300

Price: $949

This gaming laptop was originally priced at $1,300 but has since received a massive price cut in favor of the new ones that are going to be released later in the year.

The Acer Predator Helios 300 is a pretty solid performer at a sub-$1,000 price point. Its most standout feature is its 144Hz display which is somewhat unheard of in an entry-level gaming laptop.

To be able to enjoy the 144hz display, the Acer Predator Helios 300 is fitted with some pretty awesome specs for the price.

For its GPU, you’ve got an Nvidia Geforce GTX 1660Ti- a 6GB VRAM graphics card that is usually found in laptops over $1,000.

Its GPU is the Intel Core i7-9750H which is ideal for productivity tasks. You also have a pretty good amount of RAM at 16GB and a 256GB SSD.

To be honest, the only thing that is a letdown on this device is its storage capacity as a 256GB SSD may not be enough to store all of your favorite games. But, at $949, you cannot really complain.

5.Acer Nitro 5

Acer Nitro 5

Price: $749

All of the laptops that were mentioned above have a 15-inch form factor and while that is considered to be the best middle ground when it comes to display size, some people would want more.

If you want a much bigger screen that is able to output some amazing visuals, the Acer Nitro 5 has got you covered.

It’s got a really big 17.3-inch IPS display that is known for its amazing color reproduction. Though it is not capable of high-refresh-rate gaming, this budget laptop pretty much makes up for it just on its video quality alone.

Aside from its display, the performance package of the Acer Nitro 5 is no slouch. It has an Nvidia Geforce GTX 1650 graphics card coupled with an Intel Core i5-9300H mobile processor, 8GB of RAM, and 512GB PCIe SSD.

The storage device is actually pretty good because it makes use of the PCIe slot as opposed to SATA. That means that your games will load considerably faster than a SATA SSD ever can.

While its bezels are thin, you do have to take note that this gaming laptop is pretty hefty at 5.73 pounds, so you may want to consider this before buying.

But, if you do not mind the weight, the Acer Nitro 5 is definitely what I would buy if I want a larger display.

6.MSI GF63 Thin 9SC

MSI GF63 Thin 9SC

Price: $950

Most of the games nowadays make use of 4-6 CPU cores, as well as your discrete graphics solution. In that regard, you want a gaming laptop that has more than 4 cores just to be safe and that is why I recommend the MSI GF63 Thin 9SC.

This is a 15.6-inch laptop that is fitted with a GTX 1650 GPU and an Intel Core i7-9750H processor. In addition, it also comes with a hefty 16GB of RAM and 512 NVMe SSD for faster loading times.

MSI really knows how to make an aesthetically pleasing laptop and this one delivers. It has an all-black chassis with red keyboard backlighting.

The display is a 15-6 inch IPS screen and although it is just 60Hz, it has pretty thin bezels to ensure that you get the most screen real estate.

My only gripe with this laptop is MSI’s Dragon Center. That is because most of the time, it works as intended, while in others, it is hit or miss.

Still, the MSI GF63 Thin 9SC deserves to be on this list.

7.HP Pavilion 15z

HP Pavilion 15z

Price: $640

While a lot of people want laptops that are pretty high-specced, they usually come with a gamer aesthetic which means that using such a device might not be ideal in professional work environments. However, the next one is definitely unique.

The HP Pavilion 15z is quite an affordable gaming laptop that has a professional aesthetic. It doesn’t have that gamer appeal that is evident in others, but make no mistake about it- this laptop can game.

It is fitted with the Radeon Vega 10 graphics processor, AMD Ryzen 7 3700U processor, 16GB of RAM, and 512GB NVMe SSD.

The screen is a 15.6-inch IPS panel that also acts as a touchscreen as well- perfect for productivity tasks while you’re in the office.

While its gaming performance is okay, its processor is actually pretty good when it comes to video editing or CPU-intensive workloads.

So, if you want a subtle gaming laptop that can still game, the HP Pavilion 15z is tough to beat, especially at its price point.

8.Dell G7 15

Dell G7 15

Price: $999

Another gaming powerhouse under $1,000, the Dell G7 15 goes head-to-head with my top recommendation.

It has pretty respectable specs. It has the Nvidia Geforce GTX 1660Ti GPU, Intel Core i7-9750H, 16GB of RAM, 256GB PCIe SSD + 1TB HDD, and has a pretty vibrant 15.6-inch IPS display to top it off.

The laptop also has a bevy of ports so that you can easily plug in your USB devices without a problem. Coupled with its amazing WiFi card, you will never have any problems when playing online games.

Probably, the only thing that I consider a negative here is that its display panel doesn’t have a high refresh rate. However, it pretty much makes up for its thanks to its vivid display.

9.ASUS TUF Gaming FX705

ASUS TUF Gaming FX705

Price: $820

ASUS is one of the most reputable companies when it comes to creating PC components. They not only have gaming monitors, but they also dabble into creating their own graphics cards, power supply units, and even gaming peripherals.

The company’s TUF lineup is pretty much their own gaming line that also has the durability to last a really long time and this particular model delivers on that front.

The ASUS TUF Gaming FX705 is equipped with a quad-core AMD Ryzen 5 3550H CPU, an AMD Radeon RX560X graphics processor, 512GB NVMe SSD, and 8GB of RAM.

Most other gaming laptops out there do not have a robust cooling solution and that is why most of them tend to overheat after a considerable amount of time. That is not the case with this TUF laptop.

Thanks to its dual-fan cooling solution, the laptop remains relatively cool even during intense gaming sessions. Its anti-dust technology also ensures that the fans do not need cleaning for a long time.

The keyboard is pretty nice to type on and it also has configurable backlighting to enable you to see everything even in dimly-lit environments.

Although its 17.3-inch IPS display panel is great from a content consumption standpoint, some gamers might be turned off by the fact that it is not a high-refresh-rate screen.

Still, I wouldn’t count the ASUS TUF Gaming FX705 out because it is a really appealing gaming laptop at this price.

10.Dell G3 Max-Q

Dell G3 Max-Q

Price: $990

The Dell G3 Max-Q was originally priced at $1,459 but has received a considerable price cut and is now priced at $990 (which is a steal, in my opinion).

This gaming laptop has a pretty good Nvidia Geforce GTX 1660Ti GPU, an Intel Core i5-9300H CPU, 8GB RAM, and a 512GB NVMe SSD.

Its 15.6-inch IPS display has an anti-glare coating to ensure that it protects your eyes if you intend to have a marathon gaming session.

The laptop has a predominantly black design, though it has blue accents here and there to make it even more appealing.

What do I dislike about the laptop? Well, aside from the fact that its display doesn’t have a fast refresh rate, its RAM could be doubled for better performance.

But, since it has received a huge price cut, I would say that the Dell G3 Max-Q is still worth considering.

What to Consider When Buying a Gaming Laptop

A gaming laptop is different from a regular laptop, especially since it is fitted with better specs to allow people to play games on the go.

Below are just some of the most important considerations when buying one:

1.GPU

This is what makes a laptop a ‘gaming’ one. The GPU handles all of the graphical load that your game needs.

A good gaming laptop should be fitted with a competitive GPU that can handle all games, albeit frame rates may be different depending on the title.

If you absolutely have to choose a budget gaming laptop, the GPU is one that you should definitely set your eyes on.

2.CPU

The CPU works in tandem with the GPU to help you play your games at considerable frame rates. Some games would require more processing power from the CPU while others barely need it.

Since most games are graphically-intensive nowadays, you should consider getting a laptop that has at least a 4-core processor. Ideally, you want to think about getting a 4-8-core part, though having the former should be adequate in most scenarios.

3.RAM

RAM is also another important factor to consider. Ideally, you want to get 8GB of RAM as a minimum standard, though if you are going to get one, make sure that you are not running any other application in the background.

Some processes like opening a Google Chrome web browser even with just 3 tabs can eat up a lot of system memory, so always bear that in mind.

The ideal solution would be to get 16GB of RAM just to be on the safe side, but that is hard to come by when it comes to budget gaming laptops.

4.Storage

Without a doubt, you should only be considering laptops that have an SSD on it. Having an HDD along with an SSD should be considered as an added bonus and may not be required in most setups.

The reason why you’d want to settle for an SSD as opposed to an HDD is that the former is much faster when it comes to both read and write speeds.

You can see why the SSD is much better than an HDD if you load a game using either of them.

NVMe or PCIe SSDs work much better from a performance standpoint, though getting a laptop that is fitted with one may mean that you need to spend more. A SATA SSD should be okay for most people.

5.Display

For a gaming machine, most people would opt for high refresh rate displays. Although that is all good, it is hard to come by for a gaming laptop that has a sub-$1,000 price.

6.Battery Life

Part of what makes a laptop more appealing than a gaming PC is its portability. In other words, some people want to play their favorite games anywhere they please. For this purpose, you will need a laptop that has a considerable amount of battery capacity.

Ideally, you want a laptop that can at least last for 5 hours before needing an adapter to charge.

7.Keyboard

A good gaming laptop should also have a pretty good keyboard. While a mechanical keyboard is hard to find in a laptop that is under $1,000, this is still worth noting.

8.Other Features

The above-mentioned things are definitely the ones that you should consider first when buying a gaming laptop. However, having some nifty additions is also good as well.

Some notable additions include keyboard backlighting, mechanical keyboard, a better trackpad, touchscreen display, better cooling solutions, just to name a few.

Keep in mind that while added features are welcome, they might also be the reason why the price goes higher than expected.

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Amazon Luna- Everything You Need to Know About Amazon’s Cloud Gaming Service

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Amazon Luna

It seems that cloud gaming is the future as a lot of companies are pooling their resources just to make things happen.

Amazon Luna is Amazon’s foray into cloud gaming and it is going to be available soon. Read further to find out more information about this new experience.

Channel-based Platform

Amazon Luna Platform

Google has paved the way for cloud gaming to come to the fore with the release of the Stadia not too long ago. Although it was mired with a lot of different issues, it seems that the company has found a way to make things work.

Amazon also wants in on the action and although there are some similarities with Luna and Stadia, there are also some stark differences as well.

Before I begin, I just want to explain the concept of cloud gaming. Basically, instead of downloading games to your gaming PC or whatever platform you choose to install them, you will just stream those games using data centers that are scattered all over the world.

It should go without saying that you need to have a fast internet connection to make this happen and so that you will not experience high latency (which was a huge problem when Stadia launched).

That being said, the premise of Google Stadia is that you need to either purchase an individual game so that you can play it at any time (forever) or you could subscribe to the monthly plan and play the games that are on offer every month (and continue to play them so long as you’re subscribed).

With Amazon Luna, you will be presented with different channels that you can subscribe to. Each of these channels has different games on offer which makes this quite appealing for game developers to show their mettle.

Right now, the platform is still in beta and there are only two channels available at the moment- Amazon’s own Luna Plus and the Ubisoft Channel. The latter will have 50 games that you can play right away and more Ubisoft games will be added in the future.

Keep in mind that this channel-based system makes it so that developers can price their services accordingly. It remains to be seen how much Ubisoft will charge individual users, so stay tuned for that.

1080p and 4K Gaming

Just like Google Stadia, Amazon Luna will support both 1080p and 4K resolutions. Of course, the latter would be more taxing and you will need a fast internet connection to be able to enjoy high-fidelity gaming. I suggest that you get a WiFi 6 router and a compatible device to make the most out of your experience.

Cross-Platform Support

Amazon Luna Cross-Platform

Unlike Stadia, Amazon Luna is more flexible in that it supports a lot of different devices. Not only can you play on your PC, but you can also choose to play it using your iOS devices, Android phones, and you can even utilize the company’s own FireTV devices as well.

Now, there has been this entire debacle about Apple’s 30% cut on every app in its App store but the good news is that Amazon can circumvent that.

You see, when you are going to play on your iOS devices, the application will actually be a PWA or a Progressive Web App. Basically, the game that you want to play will run in a contained web browser instead of it being an actual application that you install in your device. This bypasses the whole 30% cut issue which is a good thing.

NVIDIA Hardware Use

According to a recent Steam survey, the vast majority of PC users are all using NVIDIA graphics cards. This is a good thing for Amazon Luna because it means that it can support a lot more people.

That is because the company’s cloud gaming service will use NVIDIA GPUs instead of AMD cards (which Stadia uses for graphics processing).

Supposing that Amazon Luna will be more popular than any other cloud gaming service out there, NVIDIA will enjoy huge profits as a result.

Can Be Streamed to Popular Sites

Amazon Luna Controller

Twitch is arguably the most popular streaming platform today and Amazon is looking to forge a partnership with the said service to allow you to stream your games to the popular website.

The said platform is widely used as a means of generating revenue- something that is quite popular today due to the recent pandemic.

This move also makes it appealing as well as more and more content creators can use Amazon Luna to reach a broader audience.

New Controller with Alexa Support

Amazon Luna Controller 2

Just like Google Stadia, Amazon Luna also requires you to get a special controller. The good thing is that the control will have a microphone so that you can use Alexa for specific voice commands.

What’s interesting about the Luna’s controller is that it is completely connected to the Cloud, which means that you do not have to pair it with the specific device you are going to use to play games online.

According to Amazon’s website, it should have a grippy texture and will feature low-friction thumbsticks that provide maximum performance across the board. By using the controller’s microphone, you can actually tell Alexa to fire up the specific game that you want to play, so long as it is inside the channel that you’ve subscribed to.

Conclusion

Amazon Luna is quite enticing, at least, on paper. It is shaping up to be a better cloud gaming service compared to its competitors but the service is still in beta, so there are more things that need ironing out before its official release.

Right now, there are only two channels that are available and Ubisoft hasn’t imposed its pricing yet. The Amazon Luna channel is priced at $6.99

If you are interested in getting in on the action, you can be an early beta tester by subscribing to the service.

Amazon Luna will be out sometime in October.

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Acer Nitro XV340CK Review- A Greatly Competitive Ultrawide Gaming Monitor Under $500

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Acer Nitro XV340CK Review

Ultrawide monitors used to be a niche display in that the only people who work on productivity tasks and creative workloads usually buy them.

Fortunately, the display technology has evolved and gamers, too, can enjoy a much wider screen.

Today, I am going to review the Acer Nitro XV340CK which is a 34-inch ultrawide gaming monitor that is priced competitively. 

Design

Even though this is marketed as a gaming monitor, the Acer Nitro XV340CK actually doesn’t look like it. It looks simple and I love the aesthetics, especially if you want to place this in your office.

The only thing that might make you think that this is a gaming display is that red accent that you can find on the base of the monitor but that’s about it.

Anyway, let’s start with the stand. Aside from the aforementioned red accent, the stand provides good ergonomics.

It gives you the ability to swivel the monitor a complete 360 degrees, you can tilt it to 35 degrees back and you can adjust the height up to 5.9 inches. Because this is an ultrawide monitor, you cannot put this thing in portrait mode.

I love the fact that this monitor has slim bezels. At only 0.4 inches, you can place another monitor right beside it and it wouldn’t really take a lot of screen real estate at all.

The overall build quality is good. Despite the fact that it doesn’t feel premium, at least when compared to the best gaming monitors out there, it still feels sturdy nevertheless.

For the ports, you get two Displayport 1.4 ports, two HDMI 2.0 ports, and two USB 3.0 ports. Due to the wealth of ports on offer, you can use this for your PC or your game console.

The only thing that might be cumbersome for some users is that the OSD controls are situated at the back of the monitor- particularly on the bottom right side. The buttons are also a bit smaller than usual, so you may have a hard time pressing the right ones.

Display

Acer Nitro XV340CK Review 2020

The Acer Nitro XV340CK has a 34-inch IPS display with a resolution of 3440 x 1440 and an aspect ratio of 21:9. It is the same as other ultrawide gaming monitors that you can find on the market so there is no problem with that.

You do have the option to enable the picture-in-picture mode so that you can divide the display in two if you wish to fire up two different programs at the same time. This is why it is not only a handy gaming monitor, but it can also be used for office work as well.

Its contrast and brightness leave much to be desired. With a native contrast ratio of 1048:1 and peak SDR brightness of only 247 nits, it is not the best display when it comes to these things.

However, its redeeming quality is that its colors are accurate. After calibration, I got 95% sRGB, 82% AdobeRGB, and 81% DCI-P3. It is relatively color accurate and it would have been nice for creative workloads, but its peak brightness just falls short of making it an ideal display for such use-cases.

It is also worth noting that if you are in a well-lit room that the brightness could be a huge issue. The good thing is that the display’s matte finish can help reduce glare significantly, though you will still find that it is not bright enough in some situations.

I am surprised by the fact that there is literally no color bleed on the Acer Nitro XV340CK. This is unheard of, especially since ultrawide monitors are notorious for this.

Performance

Sure, its peak brightness and contrast could have improved, but gamers are not especially focused on those things. If anything, it is the performance of the display that usually takes the cake and I am happy to report that you won’t be disappointed with the Nitro XV340CK.

Normally, with IPS panels, they tend to not have a good response time, but that is actually not the case here. At just 5.3ms, it is definitely one of the best out there even when compared to other, more premium models.

How about input lag? This is a speed monitor and as expected, input lag is minimal. At just 4.2ms, I am really blown away by the performance of this thing. Every keypress on your gaming keyboard will register almost immediately and that is really great from a competitive standpoint.

It is also worth noting that its 144Hz refresh rate is ideal, especially since most gamers are clamoring for high refresh rate displays anyway.

This is a FreeSync gaming monitor and you can enable this variable refresh rate feature in both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards.

To get a hold of the said features, it is important for you to know that you should use the DisplayPort cable that is included in the box. There is also an included HDMI cable if you want to use this display for your Xbox or Playstation consoles.

Acer Nitro XV340CK

Verdict

With all of those things being said, if I were to ask you how much this thing costs, what will be your guess? If you’ve guessed around $700, you’re wrong.

The Acer Nitro XV340CK is priced at just $450! At that price, you are getting a relatively color-accurate monitor, a really fast display with minimal input lag, and a vast number of ports that you can use for your PC or game consoles.

Sure, its contrast and peak brightness could have been improved, but if you are talking about raw gaming performance, the Acer Nitro XV340CK blows other ultrawide gaming monitors out of the way.

Just make sure that you have a nice gaming PC for this thing to work nicely. Other than that, I highly recommend the Acer Nitro XV340CK for its price and performance.

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HyperX Cloud Stinger S- A Comfortable 7.1 Surround Sound Gaming Headset

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HyperX Cloud Stinger S Review

As an audiophile, I’ve always loved HyperX’s gaming audio solution. They are inexpensive and for the price, you are actually getting sound quality that you normally would only hear from expensive products.

In today’s article, I am going to review the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. This is a budget offering that aims to improve upon the original Cloud Stinger with the inclusion of a 7.1 surround sound option.

Do I recommend this headset? Find out later on in the article.

Design

The HyperX Cloud Stinger S is actually quite similar to the original version. It has the same pleather ear cups that envelope your ears quite nicely and the clamping force of the headset itself is actually quite okay.

I’ve been receiving reports that there are some people that have problems with the tightness or, shall I say, how loose this thing can be. But that will probably be a result of the size of your head and not the actual product itself. For me, the fit was okay, but your mileage may vary.

Although this thing is predominantly made in plastic, the overall build quality is good, though I would advise you not to throw this headset when you lose a round in a MOBA game or first-person shooter.

There is a microphone on this headset and just like the original, it is not removable. It would have been nice if you could remove it when you are not using it because even if you fold the microphone (which also acts as a way of muting it), you will still see it which can be annoying at times.

This thing is quite simple and all you have for the controls is the volume slider that is located on the right ear cup. 

While other HyperX gaming headsets come with a carrying pouch, I am sad to say that the HyperX Cloud Stinger S doesn’t have one.

All you get in the box aside from the headset is a USB dongle that is attached to a relatively long cable and some documentation. And, since you use this thing completely wired, it can also be used in your Playstation or other game consoles as well.

The 3.5mm analog cable should be inserted in the USB dongle if you wish to use its 7.1 surround sound implementation, but if you are just going to watch movies or play non-competitive games, I suggest that you do not use it.

Audio Quality

HyperX Cloud Stinger S Review 2020

There are two modes that you can utilize if you are going to use the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. You can use its 3.5mm headphone jack and enjoy stereo sound or you could insert that into the included USB dongle and use the 7.1 surround sound feature.

Keep in mind that if you are going to use the 7.1 output that it is only supported on the PC since you will need the NGENUITY software to enable it.

That being said, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S’ sound signature leans more toward being bright and with a little emphasis on the bass. This seems to be the preference of the majority of gamers since lower frequencies can make those in-game sounds pop-out more.

I also love the mid frequencies as it is quite balanced as well. I’ve had no problems listening to in-game dialog and when I am using the microphone, it just works really well.

Although the high frequencies are okay, I would say that it is the weakest of the bunch, though not so much as to diminish the overall sound quality. You will still hear the sibilance of the cymbals and lead guitars, but it is not as pronounced as the lower and mid frequencies.

As for the 7.1 surround sound, you should enable it in the companion software and it is only available when you are on the PC.

Anyway, its surround sound is okay but I say this because it is a budget gaming headset. If you compare it to the more premium ones, this is subpar at best. Still, you could enable it in your favorite games but I will advise against it if you are just listening to music or watching movies.

Despite a relatively good clamping force, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S doesn’t do so well in terms of sound isolation. People around me can still hear what I was listening to, so this might not be ideal if you are playing at night and there are people sleeping.

Microphone Quality

HyperX Cloud Stinger S

There is usually this notion that budget headsets have horrible microphones but not the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. In fact, I would go on to say that it has one of the better ones on the market.

Instead of sounding tinny, the microphone quality of the Cloud Stinger S is full-bodied and my teammates can hear every word I said without any problems.

The volume of the microphone is also quite good as well. Normally, with budget offerings, you tend to sound a bit ‘too far’ but that is not the case here.

Overall, I am quite pleased with the microphone. The only thing that I do not like is that the flippable microphone may impede your vision sometimes, but I think that you can adjust to this.

Verdict

For a budget headset, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S is definitely one of the better sounding ones. I also love the fact that the microphone’s quality is top-notch and it can even go head-to-head against its more premium counterparts.

I am just a bit disappointed that you do not get a carrying pouch with this one because other HyperX gaming headsets have them. But, this is a minor inconvenience.

I did not feel the need to talk about the NGENUITY software mainly because it is pretty barebones and all you can do with it is to enable the 7.1 surround sound, adjust the volume and microphone, and that’s about it. There is no equalizer present which is quite odd.

Still, for what it is giving you, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S is highly recommended. This thing costs $60.

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