LucidSound has been having a great 2018 so far, with the excellent LS35X quite easily slipping into the top spot as the best wireless Xbox One headset available right now. However, it is a bit pricey. Thankfully, the company is also proving to be a contender in the mid-range, with the fresh $60 LS25 proving itself to be no slouch.
Let's have a look (and listen).
$60 (opens in new tab)Bottom line: The LucidSound LS25 punches well above its price point, with a surprisingly great microphone, high-quality construction, and solid sound.
- Excellent construction.
- Great value.
- Great microphone.
- Audio is average.
What you'll love about the LS25
The LucidSound LS25 uses the same sexy design as its more expensive cousins, with metal framework on the ear cups, high-quality leatherette ear cups, and a comfy padded headband. The whole package is incredibly light, making it pleasant to wear throughout long sessions, and it feels far sturdier than you'd usually expect for this price range. Simply put, this headset is high-quality.
|Frequency response||20 Hz to 20,000 Hz|
|Connectivity||3.5 mm / PC split cable (120 cm)|
|Price||$60 (opens in new tab)|
In addition to the high-quality construction, LucidSound has packed some great sound quality across the board into this headset. The microphone, in particular, is rather impressive, as this is usually one area in which most gaming manufacturers seek to cut costs, particularly on the mid-range. The microphone is detachable for those who might want to take this headset on the go (and you totally can since it doesn't look silly), and it comes with an optional wind guard. The dual mic array is also designed to limit background noise for tournament play.
There's no surround experience built in, but the company advises the use of either Windows Sonic or Dolby Atmos to add a bit of extra positional awareness, and in that, it works rather well. The LucidSound signature on-ear controls are there, as well, allowing you to adjust the volume by turning a dial on the left cup or mic mute by pressing the right cup.
What you'll love less about the LS25
Generally speaking, the LS25 has decent sound quality, driven by 50 mm speakers. The headset does seem to accentuate highs, which help with environmental enemy awareness for tactical play. However, I found they sound a bit trebly overall, with distortion for louder sounds. It can hinder the distinctiveness of individual sounds, particularly in chaotic games like Battlefield V, making them sound a little unnatural. Also, the bass is invariably weak, making them a poor option for music and movies (although, they aren't really advertised for anything other than gaming).
Swapping between the LS25 and the pricier LS35X was a bit of a night and day experience in terms of sound quality, with the latter providing a far richer experience. But, hey, the LS35X is also quite a bit more expensive.
Speaking of advertising, the LS25 is marketed as an esports headset, which left me scratching my head. The noisy red color isn't what I'd generally consider something "esports-like," particularly since individual teams have their own branding and colors to consider. What if the opposing team is using red jerseys, like the LS25 headset? Generally, I would have thought esports-branded headsets would either have customizable visuals or at least muted colors, to step aside from an esports team's branding. If you're a fan of the color red, though, (and not in an esports team with a clashing brand accent), they're pretty sexy.
Should you buy the LS25?
While the product is well-constructed, premium-feeling, and high-value, it's clear LucidSound made some compromises in the audio experience to hit that $60 price point. By no means does it provide a bad sound experience, but you can spend just a little bit more on a HyperX CloudX or a Turtle Beach Elite Atlas and get a far richer sound profile.
If you absolutely want to spend no more than $60, the LucidSound LS25 represent the high-end of the mid-range, with some great features and design work. I just wish the compromises had been made elsewhere, instead of in the audio department.
Jez Corden is a Senior Editor for Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!
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