Corsair HS65 SURROUND Gaming Headset

The CORSAIR HS65 SURROUND Gaming Headset delivers all-day comfort and sound with memory foam leatherette ear pads and Dolby Audio 7.1 surround sound on PC and Mac, bolstered by lightweight construction reinforced with aluminum.

When it comes to design, the HS65 opts for the simple yet still classically Corsair approach, obviously taking cues from some of the grievances customers have made about the HS60 Pro Surround. Instead of a detachable mic and a separate mute button, for example, it now comes with a flip-to-mute non-detachable mic, which makes its operation more effortless and intuitive. Besides the grille on each earcup bearing that famous Corsair ship sail logo, everything else looks unembellished and plain, which appeals to me. Too many gaming peripherals are festooned with “gaming aesthetic” trimmings, and frankly, the Corsair HS65 Surround’s design is a nice departure from that, especially its white-and-silver colorway (a carbon one is on hand as well if you prefer to stick with an all-black setup).

Corsair HS65 SURROUND
Corsair HS65 SURROUND

Technology personalizes your headset settings to match your audio taste. An omni-directional microphone picks up your voice loud and clear, and custom-tuned 50mm neodymium audio drivers offer great sound quality and range. A 3.5mm audio connector ensures wide compatibility across most devices, including PC, Mac, Xbox Series X | S, PS5 with Tempest 3D AudioTech support, PS4, Nintendo Switch, and mobile. Powerful CORSAIR iCUE Software unlocks audio equalizer settings, multi-channel 7.1 surround sound, and more. Complete with convenient on-ear volume control, the HS65 SURROUND enables you to press play on great sound. You will need Corsair’s iCUE software and to use the USB adapter if you want to manage EQ settings and use 7.1 surround sound, otherwise it will work with the 3.5mm jack for your PC or console. It’s a comfortable fit that can be adjusted, the ear muffs are soft and don’t hurt your ears after prolonged usage.

Corsair HS65 Surround – Software

The Corsair HS65 Surround uses Corsair’s iCue software – the same software the brand uses for most of its gaming peripherals – and it’s as straightforward and sound-focused as ever. You can use the headset without it out of the box, but if you want to take advantage of its Dolby Audio 7.1 surround sound capabilities or tweak the current sound profile, it’s a good idea to have the software handy. And, believe me, you’ll want to toggle surround sound on at the very least.

There are three main tabs available to you on the iCue program. There’s the Equalizer, which gives you access to the 10-band EQ, the five audio presets, mic adjustments, the stereo/Dolby 7.1 toggle button, and the ability to create your own audio profiles.

With the Movie Theater profile on, the HS65 sound profile is quite pleasant. There is a clear spark in the highs that renders instruments and sound effects with energetic force, while the mid-range has enough room to breathe and spread out. The bass is still present, and there is quite a lot of it to contend with, but it is reasonably well controlled if not a little untamed.

Corsair HS65
Corsair HS65

The soundstage is surprisingly wide for a closed-back headset like this – it is almost as if it is artificially expanded – but thankfully, there is no hollowness present which is usually the case when the sound profile is engaged in such a way. As such, vertical and horizontal positioning is quite decent, and I had no problems identifying approaching enemies in Overwatch 2. It could be a little more clearer and precise, but maybe the other equalizer presets might come of use (for example, the FPS Competition, which sounds horrible to my ears but others might get some mileage out of it).

Of course, these equalizer presets are not available when you shift to using the headset on a console. In fact, the headset does seem to have built-in sound presets with similar functionality (triggered by pressing on the volume wheel) but they do not make any difference to the audio whatsoever. Changing from Pure Direct to Movie Theater made no difference without the iCUE software, and as such, it uses the default bass-heavy sound profile. In games, it doesn’t sound too bad as it does when listening to music, but it does lose out on a clear sense of directionality and sharpness in sound that the Movie Theater profile brings.

If you are on PC, you can avail two additional audio enhancement features. The first one is Dolby Audio, which expands the audio to provide a virtual 7.1 surround sound setup. It’s not good at all, to be honest, and games just sounded odd and disjointed with it. I mostly left it turned off for the entire period of my time with the headset, and I suggest you do the same.

Corsair HS65 Surround – Performance

The Corsair HS65 Surround may not be as feature-rich as others, but when it comes to gaming headsets, audio performance is king, and that’s where this headset truly shines. The headset supports Dolby Audio 7.1 surround sound for an even more immersive experience, but even on stereo, it delivers excellent sound quality in which all frequencies are represented beautifully and there’s decent sound imaging. On top of that, it’s pretty loud at its highest volume with only the slightest hint of distortion.

While it isn’t what I would call neutral-sounding, all frequencies are present and not one overwhelms the others. The bass is very present and actually delivers a bit of that rumble we all crave when gaming or watching blockbusters, but it’s not overwhelming. The highs are clear and detailed without being overly bright. And the mids are full without sounding muddy.

HS65 Wireless
HS65 – images

Utilize the USB adapter and toggle on the Dolby 7.1 surround sound feature in iCue, and suddenly, the soundscape is much wider and much more immersive without sounding artificial. Obviously, you’re not really getting a real 7.1 speaker system here, but the effect is as close to the real thing as you can get with a pair of headsets.

The sound imaging is even more impressive with the surround sound feature. You can really hear individual elements moving from one side to the other. Better yet, audio elements seem positioned in a three-dimensional space so you can easily hear elements relative to you, whether they’re far off to the left, moving around you, or just behind you on the right.

For $49.99, the Corsair HS65 SURROUND is a perfectly fine choice for gamers who want surround sound and adjustable EQ options for under $100 USD. The default sound profile is just okay, and shouldn’t impede your gaming too much on other platforms, but PC gamers will benefit the most from this headset given the ability to choose EQ it. The biggest selling point is the microphone, which is great for Discord and in-game chat. Otherwise, this is just an okay headset that doesn’t really stand out.

Specification Details
Headphone Model HS65 SURROUND
Headphone Interface 3.5mm
Audio Compatibility PC; MAC; Playstation; Xbox; Mobile
Headphone Frequency Response 20Hz – 20 kHz
Headphone Battery Life N/A
Headphone Sensitivity 114dB (+/-3dB)
Headphone Wireless Range N/A
Headphone Type Wired
Headphone Drivers 50mm
Impedance 32k Ohms @ 1 kHz
Memory Type 3.5mm
Microphone Type Omni-directional
Microphone Impedance 2.2k Ohms
Microphone Frequency Response 100Hz to 10kHz
Audio CUE Software Yes
Battery Type N/A
Color GRAY
Audio Dolby Audio
Lighting No
Platform PC, PS4/5, Xbox 1 / X
Model HS65 SURROUND
Microphone Sensitivity -41dB (+/-3dB)
Surround Sound Yes
Cable Length 1.8m
Detachable Microphone No
Weight 0.514
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