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Thrustmaster Y300 CPX Ghost Recon Edition Headset Review

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I have a lot of headphones.

In-ear, over-ear, open-back, closed-back. I have a bit of an audiophile obsession due to my love of music. They all vary in sound quality, build quality and how much bass is added; and listening to a song for is much akin to the aged old gentleman ritualistically smoking his cigar in his lounge. I know good headphones when I hear them.

Now, to my surprise, the Thrustmaster 300CPX sits nice and high in that pile. It is an absolutely brilliant sounding headset thanks to its large drivers giving you an immersive soundscape for, presumably if you bought this edition, Ghost Recon Wildlands. It is a comfortable, affordable headset for a large number of consoles, however sadly this extreme compatibility and control both helps and hinders this headset, causing difficulty where there should not be any.

So out of the fancy Ghost Recon adorned box you get the headset itself, a detachable microphone, the inline control extension (more on that later) and a 3.5mm converter cable for Xbox controllers. There is nothing really at fault here, the packaging does a nice job of giving you all the useful headset information as well as a nice frequency range and response graph on the back for the serious audio nerd like me. No real complaints here.

So let us get the big bugbear questions done first. It sounds good. Really good. Better than any other gaming headset I own. The 50mm drivers inside push the sound well, removing the usual distortion most headsets get at higher volumes. Sound is crisp, clear and while not lacking the usual cranked bass boom most modern gaming headsets use to make explosions sound bigger the boosting is across the board and it does not stand out. From the first time I listened to music on it, I could tell they had taken care to not just accommodate for the hardcore FPS gamers out there, but to make this headset one which is comfortable with any style of game.

Speaking of comfort, the headset is built well and built comfortable. The extenders are made of solid metal and the flex does not feel too risky. Big thick padding on the ear cups and the headband means that long periods of gaming give minimal discomfort from wearing, however the weight causes unnecessary neck strain over time. For those of you with larger heads, you will find that the headband pushes back a little too much, meaning that there is some discomfort at the tip of the skull, though I found a little beating to soften the material seemed to solve that problem.

Second big question: is the microphone any good? Not really, no. Its passable, sound is crisp enough to make you legible, however the mic is typically a little too tinny for anything more than gaming with friends. The feedback feature on the inline controls helps mitigate background noise and feedback from the speakers which is a welcome bonus. Plus it is removable so you can rely on your far fancier microphone if you do possess one.

And now we come to the inline controls. There are plenty of benefits to using them, primarily the fact that they add about 4 feet extra to a really short headphone cable. Plug in the headset and you get the option of connecting via USB, or component for those of you playing on really old consoles. The list on the box actually says PS4, XBO, PC, PS3, Xbox 360, Mac and VR headsets. You can also plug your controller into the cable, allowing you to control its volume as well.

In theory.

In reality, getting this thing to do what you want is a trauma in itself. While plugging in on consoles means the voice chat will transfer to the headset, getting the console sound to do the same is a far more difficult task, especially on the PS4 I tested it on. You cannot just leave one earpiece off either due to the design of the headset, and even if you could they are insulated to the point you would be hearing your game in mono.

If you manage to get the sound to work, well done, you run into the annoyance of the inline controls covering different instances of sound per console. Sadly nothing I have tested these on has ever been simple plug-and-play, and most of the time I found none of the options other than chat worked, which when turned down turned down all of your sound, not just your chat volume.

You find yourself stuck in a catch 22: you have to use the extension as you do not have enough length attached to the headset, but doing so means fighting through a rather naff inline control system. Most of time I just found myself ignoring the inline entirely and just using it for the cable length. The only console I removed it for was the switch, as that is close enough to me at all times to use the attached cable, though using it with consoles in general is a pain as you have to lay cable across the room so you can sit in your comfy seat.

The Y300CPX is a brilliant sounding headset bogged down by trying to be too feature-filled. If this was simply the headphones alone I would have been singing far more praises about this and just wishing for a better microphone. However with a subpar and far too finicky inline control system you have to use just to get the cable length your eye is drawn away from what is good and is drawn to getting the damn thing to work properly.

I do still recommend these. While the control sucks you can ignore it. Your only real decision is whether you would like to have the Ghost Recon Wildlands aesthetic all over it, the logo printed on the cushioning like a mini billboard above your head. Though this isn’t the first branded run they have done of the headset, and I much more like the aesthetic of the Doom edition, with its distressed design and UAC logo. But the choice is yours in the end. This is a brilliant sounding 8/10 headset and worth fighting through the niggly controls for that quality.

Rating:
8/10
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Studying BSc Psychology at University of South Wales. Primarily a musician with a love of all things audio technology and audio production gaming is my escape into hopefully beautiful worlds full of wonderful experiences and phenomenal soundtracks. I review with an unbiased ‘try anything once’ mentality and love to find wonderful little indie games or audio technology and will pull any game apart with no discrimination. In general my preferred games are story-driven open world adventures of any kind though I will play anything if I find fun in it.

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