We’re reviewing the excellent wireless LS30 headset from LucidSound – compatible with nearly every device out there but designed primarily for gaming.
If the name LucidSound doesn’t ring a bell, then you’d be forgiven. It’s a relatively new player in the marketplace, although they’re building on experience that was gained when members of their team were at brands like Tritton. We actually met with Tritton close to ten years ago already at CES, so it’s been somewhat of a long journey to get to the LucidSound LS30.
The most striking thing about the LS30, to me, is how non-striking it is – and that’s a compliment. It’s elegant, sleek, and not as bulky as a lot of the gaming headsets out there. Once you remove the optional microphone boom, it can easily pass for a normal pair of headphones – especially if you wear the more discreet black edition of the headset (the alternative is white and gold and provides a bit more “bling” that way). Perhaps it’s because it’s not an especially bulky headset, but I found the LS30 to be extremely comfortable to wear as well.
Speaking of regular headphones, the LucidSound LS30 can serve that purpose if you plan on also using it for listening to music on your MP3 player, home or car stereo, phone or any other device that has a regular headphone jack – the headset comes with an extra cable that you can use to establish a wired connection.
Wireless connectivity is powered using a rechargeable battery that lasts about fifteen hours on a full charge – pretty decent and we’re hoping it holds up to that standard when the battery ages over time. Connecting the headset to your console of choice (X360, X1, PS3 and PS4 are all supported) is super easy as well – just connect the included wireless receiving using a free USB port and hook up the included audio cable to the console’s optical port. That’s it, and it works on PC as well as long as you have the appropriate outlets available – even if it’s not officially supported or advertised. And if wireless doesn’t work with your PC, then you can always try wired. Functionality is pretty much the same for all systems, although the Xbox One compatibility also includes (simulated) 3D surround sound as a nice extra feature.
Despite looking like a fairly straightforward headset, the LS30 is packed with features and manages to hide them well by not resorting to a wide array of clearly visible buttons and controls like so many other headsets do. Volume control is done using a simple turn of the dial on the earcup (one controls audio volume, the other one the mic volume), and muting is a case of pressing the middle part of the earcup. Both options aren’t visible, allowing the LucidSound to keep its pleasant and neutral look. Small buttons on the rim of the earcups allow you to select audio presets or pair the headset using wireless technology. The latter is done using the ‘power’ button, for which you’ll obviously need a charged headset.
Of course, audio quality is the most essential element of any headset – and the LS30 delivers in this regard as well. It may not be quite as expressive when listening to music as some of the higher end models we’ve seen from Sennheiser, but those are clearly developed with a different audience in mind. For gaming, you’re getting excellent sound quality here with crisp sound that doesn’t lose any of its fidelity when switching to wireless mode. Channel separation is clear, and the positional audio works wonders on the Xbox One. At its price point, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better deal for a headset that combines quality audio with tons of connectivity options and a wireless mode. In that segment, LucidSound has propelled itself right to the top of the “best value” lists.