AmazonBasics Xbox One headset review: Mucho boom for your buck

This Xbox One gaming headset from Amazon provides great entry-level audio for cheap.

For Xbox One accessories, the growing "AmazonBasics" line is among the best when on a budget. Backed by one of the world's largest retailers, the range strips products down to basics, while still maintaining a benchmark for quality and features. Amazon generally delivers on this claim, through its controllers, chargers, and more for the platform.

After getting hands-on with Amazon's take on Xbox One headsets, it provides the familar blend of strong features at low price.

What you'll love about the AmazonBasics Xbox gaming headset

Like much of the AmazonBasics range, this headset's low price is enticing, especially for those on a tight budget. While cutting commodities of some premium alternatives, it often nails the basics, while guaranteeing a high standard of build quality. This headset fulfills this proposition, stripping down to essentials for the average casual gamer. As an officially licensed Xbox product and an Amazon one-year warranty, this is a budget accessory you can buy with confidence.

The main body of the AmazonBasics gaming headset is comprised of a robust yet flexible plastic, featuring an adjustable headband and articulated on-ear speakers. Both units are padded with artificial leather cushions, with a matching padded headband overhead. This makes for a lightweight fit that remains comfortable over long sessions, although the cushions could sit firmer against the ear. This unit also features green highlights across its frame, in line with Xbox branding.

Dual stereo speakers output audio expected at this price, suitable for basic listening, but lacking the nuance of higher-end alternatives. You may miss the punch of top-tier audio, but across most games, movies, and music, it covers the average Xbox One owner. This is paired with a fully-retractable microphone arm bound to a fixed 140-degree hinge, which holds up for general voice chat over Xbox Live. And when not in use, the microphone remains firmly tucked into the headset body.

Connecting over the commonplace 3.5mm audio jack on modern Xbox One controllers, you'll have a generous 1.3-meter tether at all times. The inline headset controls are welcomed too, which allow for quick volume adjustment and microphone muting. Used in tandem with Xbox One's software audio tuning options, you'll have powerful flexibility over mixing.

What you'll dislike about the AmazonBasics Xbox gaming headset

Although its lightweight frame makes for comfortable wear, the overall presentation of this headset packs sizeable room for improvement. The near all-plastic finish feels cheap in-hand (and on-head) which detracts from some otherwise smart design choices. Comparably priced headsets like the official Xbox Stereo headset provide a much more polished feel at a similar price.

You'll also need to consider what you want from a headset, with alternatives better suited for certain gamers. These cans are well suited for immersive games or blockbuster movies, however, footsteps and directional audio in shooters is less perceivable.

Finally, for those still rocking a first-generation Xbox One controller, this headset isn't for you. This headset requires a second-generation or third-generation revision of the gamepad, identified by a 3.5mm headphone jack on the underside. Although Microsoft offers a 3.5mm adapter for these controllers, this product has been discontinued.

Should you buy the AmazonBasics Xbox gaming headset?

For the casual Xbox One gamer, the AmazonBasics Xbox One headset could fill a variety of boxes. It's a comfortable product that delivers on the essentials, while still allowing for a low price point. Amazon never fails to deliver when catering to this crowd, sitting among the best low-end headsets to date. Provided its shortcomings aren't a deal breaker, there's a lot to love about this product.

While the AmazonBasics gaming headset retails for $17.99, the accessory is currently out of stock in the U.S. For those in the UK, the headset is now available for £21.26 directly from Amazon UK.

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Matt Brown

Matt Brown was formerly a Windows Central's Senior Editor, Xbox & PC, at Future. Following over seven years of professional consumer technology and gaming coverage, he’s focused on the world of Microsoft's gaming efforts. You can follow him on Twitter @mattjbrown.