Links on SoundGuys may earn us a commission. Learn more.
HyperX Cloud Stinger 2
August 25, 2022
The HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 is the new revision to HyperX’s Cloud Stinger headset. Like the previous model, this one targets the budget end of the market, and still does a remarkable job in delivering quality despite the low price. It’s generally well built and comfortable to use. However, has HyperX pushed the price too low on the Cloud Stinger 2, preventing it from delivering quality performance?
We spent several days with the Cloud Stinger 2 and learned everything you need to know before you purchase this headset.
Editor’s note: this review was published on October 3, 2022, and is the first version of the article. Updates will follow as the market changes.
This headset is best suited for gamers interested in a good quality, affordable wired headset. It’s a great choice for online games and Discord calls in particular. That being said it’s also a solid choice for anyone needing a headset with an attached microphone. Thanks to the design not being overly flashy it’s not a bad choice for professional voice calls involving work or school.
What’s it like to use the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2?
The HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 is an inexpensive wired gaming headset with a wide range of compatibility thanks to its traditional 3.5mm headphone jack connector. The headband is mostly plastic, with a comfortable pleather material where it makes contact with the listener’s head. The ear cups are also likewise made with a similar pleather material, and are for the most part fairly comfortable and breathable. The headphone hinges swivel ninety degrees, which makes it easy to place the headset on a flat surface. It’s generally comfortable, but if you’re more sensitive to weight, you might find this headset difficult to wear for long periods of time. The biggest issue with the design is the way that the headphone cable tends to coil up on itself and be difficult to uncoil.
How do you control the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2?
The HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 is generally pretty minimal when it comes to controls. It only has a scroll wheel on the right ear cup that allows you to adjust the volume. There’s no button for muting the microphone, and the headset’s features are too minimal to require any other controls. This is certainly not a criticism, it’s just indicative of how understated the features of this headset are.
Does the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 have an app?
While the Cloud Stinger 2 doesn’t have a full app, purchasing the headset will give you an access code to use DTS Headphone:X Spatial Audio. This enables you to use this on Windows for spatial audio in your applications and games. It’s not always the right choice for every game, but if you’re interested in spatial audio, it’s an excellent choice for augmenting your gaming experience.
How do you connect the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2?
The Cloud Stinger 2 connects quite simply using a 3.5mm TRRS headphone connector. This makes it compatible with many devices, including consoles like the PlayStation 5, Xbox Series S/X, and Nintendo Switch (through the headphone jack on the top of the Switch). It’s also compatible with phones and personal computers. Included in the box is an adapter that changes the TRRS signal into two TRS signals, one for the microphone input and one for the audio output. The cable is not detachable.
How well does the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 attenuate noise?
The HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 is decent when it comes to noise isolation. Conversations from people around you may be audible, but not necessarily intelligible. If someone is playing music in the same room as you while you’re wearing the headset you may need to ask them to turn it down. This is generally in line with the performance of many gaming headsets that don’t have active noise cancelling (ANC).
How does the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 sound?
Overall the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 has a frequency response with traits we often see in other gaming headsets. It has a noticeable bump to the bass around 100-200Hz compared to our ideal curve. It also has some deviation in the high end, with a questionable peak around 7kHz, which has the largest impact on the overall sound of the headset. Altogether it’s okay for the price range, with most music coming across without too many blemishes. Games fare pretty well too, and Splatoon 3 and Pokemon FireRed both sound fairly close to what we expect from each. The hard punk guitars of the Splatoon 3 soundtrack in particular sounded very fine here.
Lows, mids, and highs
When listening to music with the Cloud Stinger 2, some songs stand out and deviate from my expectations. In the song Golden Skans by Klaxons, cymbals and hi-hats occasionally seem overly prominent compared to what I’m used to. The headset generally performs quite well with bass-focused music. Technicolor by Madeon sounds quite nice, with the synthesizers of the main chorus coming across with both a nice bass response as well as a prominent high-end. On the other hand, the bass guitar-driven melodies of Turn It Out by Death From Above 1979 come across slightly too overpowering compared to how we’re used to hearing it on other headphones such as the Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO.
How good is the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2’s microphone?
The boom mic on the Cloud Stinger 2 does well compared to most other gaming headsets on the market. It covers the voice well, with a frequency response that rises to around 4kHz, before a sharp drop off around 7kHz. The rising response provides good speech intelligibility. It’s important to note that unlike on some nicer headsets, the microphone does not detach or hide out of the way when not in use, it can only be flipped up if the user doesn’t need it.
HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 microphone demo (Ideal conditions):
HyperX Cloud Stinger 2 microphone demo (Office conditions):
How does the microphone sound to you?
Should you buy the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2?
Overall it’s fairly easy to recommend the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2. Whether you need a gaming headset for voice calls or late night Guilty Gear matches, it will get the job done. The sound profile is pretty enjoyable, it’s adequately comfortable, and it has a minimal but useful set of features. The 3.5mm wired connection makes it useful with almost any device you would care to throw at it.
However, there are some caveats. The design may not be to everyone’s taste, the microphone isn’t detachable, and the cable is sometimes difficult to work with. It’s not the best headset on the market, but considering the price, it’s an excellent budget choice.
What should you get instead of the Cloud Stinger 2 from HyperX?
There are several decent alternatives to the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2, especially if you’re looking for a gaming headset under $100 USD. The Razer Barracuda X (2022) is a champion in this space and delivers on sound quality and wireless performance while remaining in a budget position. If you’re interested in something very cheap that’s still good for gaming, the JBL Quantum 50 earbuds are a solid choice. Finally, the SteelSeries Arctis Nova 1 is only slightly more expensive than the Cloud Stinger 2, but has it beat in terms of design and comfort thanks to SteelSeries’ excellent style of headband.
Frequently asked questions about the HyperX Cloud Stinger 2
Yes, the Cloud Stinger 2 is fully compatible with any device that supports a traditional headphone jack. Many PCs have a separate connector for the headphone output and microphone input, which this headset accommodates by including a TRRS-to-TRS splitter in the box.