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JBL Quantum 350 Wireless
July 26, 2021
1m (charging cable)
Mainly for PC gamers, the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless offers a competitive advantage with its lossless 2.4GHz wireless connectivity, sound quality, and surround sound. While this headset is comfortable and sounds great, with different features to customize your experience, it has some drawbacks that can make it a less enjoyable experience for console gamers.
Is the Quantum 350 the right solution to your gaming audio needs?
Editor’s note: this JBL Quantum 350 Wireless review was updated on January 11, 2023, to update formatting and add the Razer Barracuda X (2022) as an alternative.
What is the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless like?
The JBL Quantum 350 Wireless has a lot of features on the physical headset and in the JBL QuantumENGINE app. The wireless gaming headset connects over a 2.4GHz USB dongle, and charges over a USB-C to USB-A cable, which doubles as a wired USB-C audio connection. Bear in mind that the USB-C to USB-A cable is a bit short (1m) if your PC tower is on the floor. Either way, you’re in for a consistent lag-free experience.
The headset is a tad heavy and tends to slip off my head whenever I lean my head forward, regardless of how I adjust the headband. However, the leatherette-covered memory foam ear pads and headband are comfortable. As a glasses wearer with a wide head, I don’t find any discomfort around my ears from hours-long wear.
There are plenty of onboard controls, and it takes a moment to get the lay of the land.
The left side of the headset has the volume wheel and the mute button, as well as the USB-C charging port, and the right side has the on/off slider. The controls on the left side are a bit close together, so it’s easy to accidentally press the unmute button when you mean to roll down the volume.
The JBL Quantum 350 can be a little frustrating to use. The position of the volume control wheel means it’s too easy to accidentally max it out when catching the headset as it slips from my head—if you’re prone to jumpscares, this might be a little terrifying. This is especially an issue on macOS—if you are using any audio output that isn’t through Bluetooth or the 3.5mm jack, you can’t adjust output audio through the computer—which makes the control on the headphones your master volume. The microphone mute button is also easy to accidentally press while I adjust the headset.
How do you connect the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless?
The JBL Quantum 350 Wireless connects through a 2.4GHz USB RF dongle, or through a wired connection with a USB-C to USB-A cable. This means you can connect it to a PC, PlayStation 4, Playstation 5, or a Nintendo Switch if it’s docked, or if you have a USB-C to USB-A adapter. The headset isn’t compatible with Xbox consoles, as Microsoft still forbids USB audio connections for gaming headsets that aren’t made exclusively for its platforms.
Should you use the JBL QuantumENGINE software?
The JBL QuantumENGINE companion app is useful if you want to adjust the EQ, especially if you find the bass emphasis to be too much. You can also enable JBL QuantumSURROUND, which is its spatial surround sound option. In that menu, you can choose between different settings like “precise” for a low-reverb, less external-sounding spatial sound; “balanced” for what it calls a more “natural” listening experience; and “immersive” for a more, well, immersive experience with more depth perception. When you enter the advanced mode, you have the option to adjust these settings with your head diameter.
You can also adjust the microphone levels and volume, along with the sidetone, so you are able to monitor your own voice a bit while speaking. Lastly, you can find software updates in the application to keep the app and the headset’s firmware up to date.
Does JBL QuantumSURROUND work well?
I don’t find the surround sound option very helpful at all, and it was an underwhelming experience to use it. At most, it made my brain feel weird. The software is also only available on Windows, so you can’t use it if you’re running macOS or Linux.
How is the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless for gaming?
The JBL Quantum 350 Wireless is marketed primarily to PC gamers, so directional audio is important here. In the headset’s default stereo setting, directional audio comes through well, and I can hear where footsteps or shots come from when playing CS:GO and Splitgate pretty well. However, when I enable surround sound in the JBL QuantumENGINE app, my sense of direction actually gets worse. When something happens in front of me, I can hear it just fine, but anything going on behind me sounds like it’s coming from an abyss.
With regards to the EQ, the bass emphasis makes the rumble of gunshots, bombs, and even footsteps sound far too loud and overwhelming. Jumping and landing on the ground in CS:GO sounds strangely loud compared to other sounds around me, and more powerful guns in CS:GO and Splitgate sound over-the-top boomy.
This headset makes explosions and footsteps louder, which can enrich the gaming experience. If it's too much, you can EQ it down from the Windows app.
On my Nintendo Switch Lite, using a USB-C to USB-A dongle, the headset does a great job of reproducing ambient environmental sounds of Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and definitely enhances the gameplay experience. I can clearly hear monsters approaching me before any battle music starts and pick up all the sounds coming through that I don’t usually hear over my Switch’s speakers. The only difficulty I have is when putting my Switch to sleep, the headset disconnects from the dongle and I have to reconnect it again.
How long does the battery last on the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless?
JBL claims the Quantum 350 can last for 22 hours of music playtime, but that’s underselling it. In our tests, it lasts 27 hours and 6 minutes at a consistent output of 75dB(SPL). The headset takes a couple of hours to fully charge via its USB-C port—no fast charging here.
How well does the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless block noise?
The JBL Quantum 350 Wireless doesn’t have active noise canceling, so you won’t be able to game in absolute complete silence. However, the isolation is decent for a gaming headset. You will still hear really low frequencies like hums, but higher frequencies like people talking or a phone ringing won’t come through too much.
How does the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless sound?
The JBL Quantum 350 Wireless (cyan) boosts low-frequency sounds more than our house curve (pink) suggests, which is typical of JBL headphones. Sub-bass and bass notes sound more than twice as loud as the quietest mids around 400Hz. The treble response shouldn’t give you much pause, since we often see headset manufacturers selectively under-emphasize treble notes within this 3-5kHz range, to mimic the characteristic response of our un-occluded ears.
Lows, mids, and highs
When listening to Rage Against The Machine’s Take The Power Back, the already punchy kick drum intro feels louder and more prominent than usual. Even still, I can hear the guitar scratches, cymbals, and bass line shine through, showing off how well these headphones handle bass tones without masking the rest of the instruments. Faceshopping by SOPHIE sounds like a whole new song with the bass and sub-bass emphasis, which I find particularly enjoyable.
How does music sound with JBL QuantumENGINE?
Listening to music with surround sound enabled through the JBL QuantumENGINE software isn’t something I recommend. The processing noticeably decreases playback audio quality. Some might refer to this effect as “muffled” or “distant,” as if it were recorded on a cheap cassette recorder. This may be due to the extra crosstalk going on, where the left-to-right and right-to-left-channel crosstalk mimic how you experience acoustics in real life (as in, without headphones).
If you like music, don't listen to it with JBL QuantumENGINE.
Ultimately, this means that JBL QuantumENGINE makes all the music sound like the separate instruments in the track were far apart from each other and no longer homogenous. With the software enabled, vocals sound under-emphasized, making Zack de la Rocha sound like background detail rather than an important part of Take The Power Back. The guitar and kick drum remain prominent, though other percussion instruments, like cymbals, are hardly audible.
How is the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless microphone?
JBL claims this headset is Discord-certified, so it should ideally be a good quality mic for talking to your friends over there while you game.
While the microphone works well, it’s not particularly special in any way. People describe the audio as “muffled,” especially lower voices, which can sound a bit boomy due to the proximity effect. Sibilant sounds can sometimes come across as distorted, but it’s not a major problem. Background noise is still audible when speaking, and the mic will transmit echo if you’re in a big, empty room as heard in the second sample below.
JBL Quantum 350 Wireless microphone demo (Ideal):
JBL Quantum 350 Wireless microphone demo (Reverb):
How does the microphone sound to you?
Should you buy the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless?
If you’re not concerned that the headset might slip off your head, it might be worth considering the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless.
The JBL Quantum 350 Wireless is a fine wireless gaming headset for the price. The boosted bass makes for an immersive gaming experience, and its microphone is good enough to clearly communicate with friends. However, if you want to use your headset for more than just PC gaming, it would be a better investment to get headphones that sound better out of the box, have a better microphone, and a boast more intuitive design. If you only ever plan on playing first-person shooter games on your PC, and you love the overwhelming boom of gunfire and the like, this could be the headset for you.
What should you get instead of the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless?
A newer but similarly priced wireless headset that’s well worth the money is the Razer Barracuda X (2022), which has multiple connectivity options, including Bluetooth, 2.4GHz, and 3.5mm wired connections. It has a great battery life and a very good microphone too. It’s available for $99 at Amazon.
You can get a headset with a better design and more reasonable sound for cheaper. If you’re willing to spend about $50 USD more, the SteelSeries Arctic 7P ($175 at Amazon) offers a similar bass boost, a better sounding microphone, and is more versatile beyond PC gaming. The HyperX Cloud II Wireless is in the same price bracket and has better sound quality and a better mic, available for $113 at Amazon.
If you want something in the under $100 price range, the Razer Kraken X has surround sound capabilities, bass emphasis, good isolation, and a clear mic for about half the price of the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless. You can pick it up for $49 at Amazon.
Frequently asked questions about the JBL Quantum 350 Wireless?
The JBL Quantum 600 is another wireless gaming headset with the option for wired connectivity. Unlike the Quantum 350 Wireless which has a USB cable for wired playback, the Quantum 600 has a 3.5mm connection option. Interestingly, the Quantum 600 has a less consistent frequency response compared to the Quantum 350 Wireless. You’re unlikely to notice the midrange dip too much while gaming but will hear it in music with the Quantum 600.
The build quality of the Quantum 600 is a bit more robust than the Quantum 350, specifically the headband padding, and the drivers are larger (50mm compared to 40mm). With the more solid build and larger drivers comes a heavier weight (346g compared to 252g). You can buy the Quantum 600 for $104 at Amazon.
The JBL Quantum 400 is a wired gaming headset that connects via USB-C to USB-A cable or via 3.5mm cable, whereas the Quantum 350 is a wireless gaming headset with the option for USB-C to USB-A wired audio. You still get access to JBL QuantumENGINE software with the Quantum 400. With the Quantum 400, you get 50mm dynamic drivers (larger than the Quantum 350’s 40mm dynamic drivers) and you get a cardioid microphone rather than omnidirectional.