The name Astro is a very recurring one in the gaming headset market, if you have ever shopped for a gaming headset for more than two seconds, then you’ve probably heard that name. The Company Astro does one thing in particular and that is; making high-end gaming headsets. But that’s in the past because the company has stepped up its game and is shipping out cheaper alternatives in that mid-range market. In this review, we’re going to compare one such headset, titled, Astro A10 with its competition, which includes the HyperX Cloud Stinger, Plantronics Rig 400, Roccat Cross, and Turtle Beach Recon 50.
The first thing that pops up with any comparison is the price. The Name Astro is always synonymous with expensive as most of the products from the company is targeted towards audiophiles with a lot of extra cash to spare. But this is not the case with the Astro A10. Priced at around sixty dollars, the A10 is the company’s first product in the entry-level headset arena, which is really a market created and headlined by the likes of Turtle Beach and HyperX.
The matter of fact really is that Astro can compete in the low to middle-end spectrum just as well as it does in the high end. The A10’s overall performance is impressive for the price tag. It does offer a slick design, great audio, and a decent microphone. The downside is that the headset can get a bit snug, and the competition is huge with headsets from different companies providing many cost-effective alternatives with better features.
The A10 comes in variations of blue, green and red that are aimed at both console and PC players. The headset’s 6.5-foot cable has a very useful in-line volume slider and the cable can be fully detached, making it ideal for travel. This portability is a small but a big selling point.
The headset does lack the metal components and other fancy features available in most of the expensive headsets but the pricing is so good that we must look beyond the features. At around 60 dollars the headset is impressive, it’s very slick, has a nice build quality, a bendable mic, detachable cables, and good punchy audio.
Astro A10 Review
- Durable Design
- Impressive Audio
- Great Price
- Great Microphone
- Little Uncomfortable
The Astro A10 despite what the price may suggest is the very premium looking headset. It doesn’t seem cheap in any way. The build quality is nice too, it consists of two heavily padded earcups, the headband is covered with plastic inside which there is a steel frame to support the headset. The color of the plastic is charcoal grey which has more finesse than a plain black color which seems just too blunt. There are 3 color accents: red, blue and green, with the red headset having a bold feel, the blue one seems very aesthetic while the green color scheme is very sharp. Also, if you are willing to spend an extra 10 dollars you can also purchase a Call Of Duty version.
The Astro A10 also ships with two audio cables. First, you get a short, 41-inch cable with the MixAmp 60 adapter that plugs right into an Xbox controller. This cable has volume buttons on one side and two buttons opposite labelled Game and Voice. These buttons can be used to raise the levels of game sounds or your voice chat so that the two are balanced to your preference. The Second audio cable is 80 inches length and at the end of it, it has a 3.5 mm audio jack. This cable unlike the first has an inline volume control, that is; you get a volume slider but no mute button.
Comparing the weight was a tricky problem, other cheap headsets do not come with extra cables but the Astro A10 does so to minimize this problem, we weighed the other headset with an audio cable attached. The lengthy 80-inch cable when attached, the headset is pretty heavy at 365 grams, the Hyper X cloud stinger follows it at second place with the Turtle Beach Recon 50 and Plantronics 400 taking the last place at just over 200 grams. This lightweight by no means implies to comfort though. Not all light headsets are comfortable though, the Astro A10 on the other hand, despite having much weight is a very comforting headset to listen too. Not only does it has a good fit but it also has comforting sound. It falls right into that zone where it is neither too heavy nor too light.
Comfort is the one thing that the A10 totally nails. The A10 is a very cosy piece of hardware. Then again, comfort is purely subjective and most of the time it depends on an individual’s preference. The 12-ounce frame and thick memory foam ear cushions are very good in this headset. The ear cups, however, is relatively small which can be an issue for people with large ears, the sound leak can be a bummer in such conditions.
If you’re one of those people who doesn’t mind a relative raise, the Astro A10 is a comfortable headset for you.
The headset gives you full freedom to adjust height, the fabric padding on the earcups is thick and it is very soft. There’s also the presence of a small pad under the headband. The overall rise of the headset and the thick padding on the ear cups to the surprise should’ve been a tad bit cushier but it isn’t. Yet, the headset is generally very comfortable to wear. The choice of fabric could be a deal breaker for some as most people opt for the leather ear cups but it really doesn’t matter here, the Astro 10’s fabric is of great quality. It does have some flaws though, the padding, despite being a boon can get sweaty under heavy use, especially during gaming marathons. The headset has 40 mm drivers inside which isn’t a standard driver but you can’t really compare at this price point.
The A10 gives you a really impressive audio quality for a headset at this price point. The headset delivers punchy high bass and good treble which makes the balance and provides good listening experience with almost all genres.
But since the headset is only an entry-level one, the music listening experience for extreme audiophiles might not make the cut. Guitar sounds a bit off and treble sound handling is poor, to say the least.
In terms of gaming performance, games sound pretty good on this device, first-person shooters have a really neat crisp sound so the headset can be used to play competitive multiplayer games. The engine sound of some racing games are pretty outstanding and the 3D sound shift while playing some games is also very immersive. Some Games have an excellent sound signature, the headset does well on maintaining that. The punches, combos, and power-ups in fighting games have a real impact, sports simulation games sound like their counterparts, the rattling bullet on Call of Duty also puts you on a battlefield.
The A10 has 40 mm drivers. Although we are used to headsets with 50 mm drivers, this variant of the driver technology is still very new and it does produce a really good sound with nice balance across the sound spectrum. The sound is broad and is feasible for any type of content consumption whether it be TV Shows, Games or Listening to music. Even At High Volumes, the sound doesn’t distort. The headset’s overall performance is commendable given its pricing.
The Astro A10’s microphone performance is kind of a mixed bag. The recording is really average. Voices sound pretty understandable and it is good for chatting with friends but some other headsets like the Plantronics Rig 400 and the Turtle Beach Recon 50 at similar prices each had more clean sounding recordings. The Astro A10’s microphone performance was reliable in our tests. Since it is an average sounding microphone, the background noise cancellation is not up to par with some other headsets but it is totally usable. The microphone can also be folded to one’s liking that is, it’s an adjustable variant.
The A10’s features are minimal and extras are also not much, the volume slider is present on the headset’s removable 6.5-foot cable which is a simple but a very user intuitive feature. The PC version also comes with a splitter cable that can be used to plug into a PC’s microphone and headphone jack. On the other hand, the Xbox One owners can spend an extra hundred dollars for a MixAmp M60. This MixAmp M60 attaches to the controller and it allows you to activate various equalization modes while adjusting the balance between game and chat audio simultaneously.
There is one extra feature embedded on the microphone, it’s a flip-to-mute microphone. This feature was previously only present in Astro’s high-end models, it’s good to see them putting that effort here. This single button feature is a very handy one and once you get used to it, it’s a must-have feature. A small subtle button can make a huge difference and this feature alone is one strong selling point.
Headphones Form Factor: Circumaural
Drivers: 40 mm
Size: 10.2 x 3.7 x 10.6 inches
- Weight: 13 oz
Headphones Cup Type: Closed
Sensitivity: 105 dB
Impedance: 32 Ohm
Diaphragm: 2 inches
Microphone Technology: Electret condenser
Microphone Operation Mode: uni-directional
Response Bandwidth: 100 Hz
Audio Input Detail: Uni-directional – 100 – 10000 Hz
Inside the box you get:
- The headset itself with a 3.5 mm jack
- A quick user guide/ manual
- A Splitter cable for PC connection
Buy or Pass?
The Astro A10’s value for money is extraordinary. For around sixty dollars, you’re getting a headset that sounds great, has a durable design scheme and a great microphone, in addition to that, the comfort is pretty nice too.
Despite being a cheap headset, it does have a few flaws. The headset market, especially at the lower end of the spectrum, is too clouded. So, Obviously, the headset has some serious competition even at this price range. The Hyper X Cloud Stinger costs a bit less and still manages to offer better comfort, it is more lightweight and the ear cup design is well made. Also, Logitech’s G231 Prodigy also has better design and more comfort at a similar price range.
Astro A10, however, has more colour options to choose from and better microphone than the bunch. If you’re looking for a great headset to listen to and you’re on a tight budget then, at around sixty dollar Astro A10 is a safe bet. in addition to this, you can also upgrade your audio quality as there is that option for getting the MixAmp 60 after spending an extra hundred dollars if you want.
The Astro A10 has a great build quality, good design, cushy ear cups but it might be too heavy for some. It gives you a really punchy sound but it is kind of overshadowed by some other headset on the market when it comes to that flawless audio. But it is good for a sixty dollar headset. Some things are there that could be improved when we really have to nitpick but other than that it’s pretty nice. The color options are also pretty good, the microphone design and performance is surprisingly good and well, that’s what it really is, A GOOD Headset.
You really have a lot of options at the low-end spectrum. Some really good headsets are available at a hundred dollars which are better than A10, you should probably go for those if you have got enough money. Even at sixty dollars, there is no shortage of options to choose from but among all the options, Astro A10 definitely stands out and it is a very safe bet to make.
Astro A10 is fantastic overall cheap headset out there.