It’s not often that we review non-controller accessories here at Nintendo Enthusiast, but when we heard about a headset specifically designed for Nintendo Switch’s online platform, we had to check it out. Corsair, maker of fine gaming tech, took one of its popular wired headsets and added Bluetooth capability to it. It’s a cool trick for getting around the Switch’s lack of native voice chat and does so pretty well. Let’s dig into the Corsair HS70 Bluetooth Gaming Headset.
The Corsair HS70 Bluetooth Gaming Headset is an impressive piece of tech. On the outside, it has ports for a USB-C connection and two standard 3.5mm jacks, a volume dial, a mute button, and a Bluetooth connection button. As for the guts, it uses 50mm neodymium audio drivers, and the included microphone has noise canceling and comes with a little pop shield. There’s also an app that allows users to load settings and presets for a more fine-tuned sound experience. It’s compatible with Windows Sonic on the PC, but I wasn’t able to test this function.
Again, the HS70 Bluetooth is special because it allows users to connect to Nintendo Switch and their voice chat app simultaneously, allowing true voice chat for online play. I’ll admit I was skeptical at first, but it works well.
For the full experience, fellow Nintendo Enthusiast writer Steven Rollins and I played some Super Smash Bros. Ultimate online, using the official Nintendo Switch Online app. (We used the official app, but any voice chat will work and Corsair recommends using Discord.) We played a few rounds and were impressed by how good the app was for voice chat — and how much better Smash Bros. has gotten to play over the internet. In fact, the headset made voice chat on my end so seamless that I almost forgot to ask if the audio quality were acceptable on his end. He heard me just fine, and I heard both the game and his voice with excellent quality. In short, Corsair definitely accomplished what they set out to do with this product.
I’ve used the HS70 Bluetooth for a few other things since receiving the unit. It’s a damn fine headset for music, movies, and phone calls due to the level of audio quality. I’m not sure how well it would do for things like recording video, though I’m curious to see how it would do in a studio setting.
As great as the HS70 Bluetooth is for essentially bringing native voice chat to Nintendo Switch, there are a few things that might be a deal-breaker for some readers. For starters, it carries a hefty MSRP of $99.99, which might be a bit much for gamers who would want something like this. And speaking of heft, this thing is huge. It’s got a cool design but rests on the skull with noticeable weight.
Out of the box, it’s not apparent how to set everything up, especially for someone like me who doesn’t often use fancy headphones. There are just enough ports, wires, and buttons to be slightly intimidating. It took about half an hour to look around the internet to suss out which connection to use with which device and to fiddle with the buttons and wires to get it right. Ultimately, connecting this (absolute) unit to both the Switch and my phone took a little more time and effort than I was happy with and involved a wired connection to the console. However, those points are largely dependent on the individual owner and their level of experience with such things.
In terms of audience for this hardware, I imagine only dedicated online enthusiasts will spring for and get a lot of use out of this headset, considering the price tag. Within a small sample size of NE writers and my own personal friends I surveyed, online play was definitely not the preferred method of enjoying the Switch. Still, for those who could use it, this headset scratches an itch.
Once things got rolling, I greatly enjoyed my time with this gadget and plan to use it again in the future. The Corsair HS70 Bluetooth Gaming Headset is a cool product that solves a frivolous problem with the Nintendo Switch in an interesting way. It’s a damn fine piece of equipment that will hopefully find its audience. If you enjoy playing Switch games like Super Smash Bros. Ultimate or Mario Kart 8 Deluxe online but wish there were native voice chat, for a cool hundo you can make it so.
A review unit was provided by the publisher.