Whether you like it or not, headphones are becoming a necessity in our day to day lives. As someone who rarely leaves the house without my Airpods Pro and exclusively plays games and edits videos with my Xbox Wireless headset on, headphones have become a staple in my day to day life. This also means that I’ve become very picky with what I put on my ears all day. So when I got the chance to review the EPOS H3 Hybrid headphones, I was a bit skeptical at first. After using them extensively for 2 weeks, I can confidently say these headphones might be one of the better gaming headsets I’ve used in a long time.
The Non-Gamer Gaming Headset
When you think “gaming headset” I’m guessing you didn’t visualize something you would wear out in public. They’re typically designed to look like a “gaming” accessory and usually feature big unnecessary accents, an oversized microphone, and a color palette that can be seen from space. In short, most gaming headsets aren’t something you would wear at the gym or in a cafe while working.
The EPOS H3 Hybrid is one of those few exceptions. Instead of vibrant branding and a large bendy microphone, these headphones have a sleek and sophisticated look. While it does have a big microphone for gaming, it's magnetic and can be removed with a simple pull. The headset has minimal lighting, and its overall footprint is pretty small and can easily fit inside a bag.
My only actual gripe with the design of the EPOS H3 Hybrid is that the headset cant collapse into itself. As someone who regularly takes headphones with him and is a bit of a minimalist with my desk setup, taking up less space is a major selling point to me. Regardless of this small discrepancy, its still a very functional “daily driver” of sorts and is one of the very few “gaming” headsets that can be used everywhere.
How’s It Sound?
As I mentioned earlier, gaming headsets are usually only good with games. Loud thumpy bass hits when you pull that digital trigger is always nice and helps with immersion, but when you want to watch a show or do something non-gaming, your results can vary. The EPOS H3 Hybrid has an exceptional sound. It's not too muffled or too bass heavy when playing a game or listening to music. Voice calls come in clearly and it never sounded overly tinny or muddy when I would listen to podcasts from my phone while playing Valorant on my PC.
The magnetically removable microphone is one of the stand out features with the EPOS H3 Hybrid. It has a secondary built-in mic that can be used on the go and the quality is about as expected with an internal mic. If you're planning on talking into these, use the main microphone. While it wont replace a stand alone microphone anytime soon, and I wouldn’t suggest recording a podcast with it on, it doesn’t sound as hollow as your standard gaming headset mic and is an exceptional option for Zoom calls and Discord.
The EPOS H3 Hybrid features a wired 7.1 surround sound mode that can be adjusted via the EPOS Gaming Suite app. It was definitely impressive and worth plugging the headphones into your PC via USB. When using them in wireless mode, the headphones deliver an impressive stereo sound and block out just enough noise to help you focus but also keep you aware of your surroundings. Unfortunately, there is no noise blocking or transparency mode on these.
The EPOS H3 Hybrid has a hybrid mode that allows up to three connection options and the ability to use two simultaneously. You can use a traditional headphone jack, Bluetooth, or a USB connection on multiple devices at once. The convenience of being able to listen to game audio while also listening to a podcast and taking phone calls without needing to swap headphones is easily the biggest selling point with these. It’s ease of use when connecting to multiple devices makes these better than the Xbox Wireless Headphones and most gaming headsets available.
While the design is comfortable and the headset is lightweight, my biggest gripe with these headphones is the volume dial. Unlike the Xbox Wireless headset or the Astro Gaming’s A10’s, the volume controls on the EPOS H3 Hybrid are difficult to grab at times. I kept finding myself grabbing just outside the small volume dial on the side of the right headphone. While I did eventually adjust and figure it out, its placement is unintuitive.
The headphones are light and extremely comfortable. I took them to the gym and on my bike a few times, and it never felt like they were in the way or at risk of falling off. I never needed to adjust them when lifting weights or hopping up and down street curbs on my bike. At one point I took a pretty bad fall off my bike and slammed on the ground hard (watch for cars in parking lots kids), and surprisingly the headphones stayed on. These are also one of the few head sets I’ve had that didn’t make my ears hurt after having them on for a few hours. If you’re looking for a headset that can also be used in your day to day life, these might be the right ones for you.
Battery life on these is exceptional. EPOS claims that these can get up to 37 hours of use between charges in Bluetooth mode only, and around 19 if you use it in hybrid mode. I was impressed by the longevity of these headphones battery considering how good they sound. While I never made it 37 hours between charges due to me using them as a gaming headset in addition to wireless headphones, I only needed to charge them twice over 2 weeks. They also announce how much battery life they have (in the smoothest Dutch accent ever) when you turn them on. So it’s hard to forget to charge them when they tell you how much charge they have every time you put them on.
EPOS H3 Hybrid Headset Review - Verdict
The EPOS H3 Hybrid headset is easily one of the stand out gaming headsets available at its price point. While the cost of entry is a bit high, it’s worth every penny, because of everything they offer. The hybrid audio mode is a game changer for those of us that use Discord to talk to friends while gaming or just want to zone out to a podcast while playing Fortnite. Its exceptional sound quality, long battery life, and removable microphone make this one of the most versatile premium gaming headsets available and an ideal option for someone looking to get a little more bang for their buck.
TechRaptor received the EPOS H3 Hybrid Headset for the purposes of review.
- Exceptional sound quality
- Simultaneous audio inputs are convenient
- Removable microphone
- Comfortable and lightweight fit
- 7.1 surround sound capable
- Volume wheel is small and hard to reach at times