There was no missing HyperX on the Expo Hall floor of PAX AUS 2016. Dead centre and bathed in red light, there was little doubt that HyperX came to play.
Known originally for their performance-focused system memory and solid-state drives, this gaming subsidiary of Kingston have made the jump from components to peripherals, becoming a late bloomer in the hotly competed space.
Having developed quick success with their initial HyperX Cloud Gaming Headset, during our interview Michael guided me through how the range has grown, right up to the latest with their Cloud Stinger Headset, which I have been lucky enough to be hands on with in the weeks since.
The Cloud Stinger is a budget entry to the Cloud series of headsets, and while similarly priced to the HyperX Cloud Core with the same single 3.5mm stereo connection, the Cloud Stinger focuses on lightweight comfort and streamlined functions for long sessions of general gaming, while still retaining the same quality audio with their 50mm drivers. More info on the Cloud Stinger can be found on the HyperX website and available from all good gaming peripheral retailers.
Having not had the greatest history with gaming headphones, nor being a particular audiophile, I have to say I was genuinely impressed by the quality of the <$100 wired headset. While they suit me just fine for basic audio editing and PC gameplay, again not being particularly precious myself when it comes to game audio, I will admit they are not quite robust enough to compete with my current headphone setup on my Xbox One, where I do most of my gaming these days. Those looking for USB connection, in-built DSP sound card or virtual 7.1 will need to look at the top end of the series, with the Cloud II.
For the proper Xbox One gaming experience, HyperX were gleefully displaying (although not available for purchase at PAX AUS) the CloudX Revolver Gears of War Limited Edition, the second official Xbox licensed gaming headset for HyperX. Designed in conjunction with Microsoft and The Coalition, developers of Gears of War 4, if nothing else I can say these make an impact. Blood red and sporting the Gears logo, the solid steel frame and soft-looking brown leather would certainly see the back of my current set up, which while wireless, does leave me wanting. More details on the CloudX Revolver Gears of War can be found here, as it is a JB Hi-Fi exclusive here in Australia.
Moving across the HyperX booth, in the next big endeavour for HyperX is the bold move into precision keyboards, a space we are seeing a few peripheral companies moving into in the Australian market. With a clear move away from ‘media’ style keyboards that focused on macro keys, multimedia functions and on-keyboard displays, the HyperX Alloy FPS Mechanical Gaming Keyboard follows the current trend toward minimalist, mechanical keyboards that are low form factor and easily transportable.
Sporting detachable USB connections and interchangeable WASD/1234 keys, the Alloy FPS promises to provide stability despite it’s compact size; leave you plenty of desk space for frantic FPS mouse movement. Michael again informed me that HyperX has worked closely with both eSports players as well as the gaming community generally, eagerly taking on feedback in order to improve their products.
“For the past two years we got tonnes of positive feedback from our headsets.” Michael told us. “People love it, love the texture, love the sound quality. We already sold over 1 million for the Cloud and Cloud II series.”
Michael also let us know that with the successful launch of the HyperX Alloy FPS, HyperX are now looking forward to the release of their next gaming keyboard, as well as a range of gaming mice to compliment their Fury range of Pro Gaming mousepads, in 2017. We’ll certainly be keeping an eye on this brand in the lead up to PAX AUS 2017.