A Comparison of the Astro A40 vs A50 Gaming Headsets
Last Updated on
A gaming headset is an important part of the overall gaming experience and can make a huge difference for many that enjoy the wide range of amazing entertainment options that technology allows. If you already have excellent graphics and selected your favorite games, the final piece of the puzzle is to choose the right headset that will give you an excellent total experience.
Choosing the right set of headphones can sometimes be difficult as there are many different brands, features and models. However, two of the better models available are the Astro A40 and Astro A50 which are considered high-end gaming headsets by most experienced users that know the various available models well.
While there are sometimes clear advantages and disadvantages between certain models, sometimes, the best gaming headset is the one that fits your exact preferences and offers the features that are most important for you. Let’s have a look at the features of the A50 and A40 to see which one might be the best fit for your gaming needs.
Bottom Line Up Front: These two headsets are almost identical, so the choice is relatively simple. Do you want a wireless or corded headset? If wired is your preference, go with the Astro A40, otherwise the wireless Astro A50 here is a better choice.
First Things First – High Level Overview
Here’s a quick look a the key specs we will be looking at between these two Astro gaming headsets:
|Feature||Astro A40||Astro A50
|Compatible||Windows 7, PlayStation 4, Mac OS X, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360||Windows 7, PlayStation 4, Mac OS X, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360|
|Power||Plug required||Battery up to ten hours|
|Price||$249.99 (Check the latest prices here!)||$299.99 (Check the latest prices here!)|
When selecting the headset that will work best for you, it is best to look at the set of features each model offers one by one. Sometimes, even small differences can make a big difference and it can be easy to overlook certain items as there is a lot of technology packed into these devices.
Wired vs. Wireless Gaming Headset Debate
The A40 is a wired headset while the A50 is wireless. Many times this feature alone can make the difference in which headset you might choose for various reasons. A wireless headset is certainly more convenient and comfortable as it does not require you to deal with wires allowing freedom of movement while gaming.
Perhaps even more important wired versus wireless can affect the quality of sound for many headset models depending on their quality and overall build. However, the A40 and A50 seem to both be unaffected when it comes to sound quality and wired/wireless like some other budget models that are not as well designed as these two units.
How important this feature is when deciding between the two models should largely come down to your personal preference and what will work best for you. Remember, you may use the headphones for more than gaming such as watching movies or listening to music. Therefore, freedom to move to other locations in a room could be an important aspect for you.
The A50 has a range of around thirty feet so it might be important to look at the dimensions of the room you plan to use the headset in the most and see if that range is a good fit. Of course, with a wired unit you do not have to worry about range or the possible intermittent reception interruptions.
The A50 includes a rechargeable battery that will last between eight and ten hours when fully charged and depending on how you use it. The unit will alert you when the battery gets low on juice by sounding a low beep which means it has less than twenty minutes of battery life remaining and needs to be charged.
The A40 is wired so it is completely powered by simply plugging the unit in and it is ready to go. While perhaps not quite as convenient in some ways as the A50, it does avoid you having to worry about dead batteries and having to recharge them or having your headset run out of power mid-game or mid-movie.
Both of these units are compatible with most gaming systems including Windows 7, PlayStation 4, Mac OS X, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360. However, if you plan to use the voice chat option for the Xbox 360 then even though the A50 is wireless you will need to attach a small cord from one of the ear pieces to the control unit. Probably not a big deal for most users but if you are expecting a totally wireless experience and find this out after you make a purchase, then you might be disappointed.
Regardless of performance and features, comfort should never be overlooked when choosing a gaming headset. It is perhaps the most important aspect as you will likely be wearing the headset for several hours at a time. If a headset is uncomfortable they will quickly become totally unusable and another pair will need to be purchased.
While the A40 is about 40 grams lighter than the A50, both only weigh in the mid 300-gram range. This is a bit heavier than some other headsets that are lower quality but still light enough to provide plenty of comfort for most users. Each model is heavily padded around the top and ear pieces with comfortable foam padding, making them fit snug but comfortable at the same time. The advanced design of both models actually disperses the weight of the headset over the entire unit so there is no irritation or discomfort from a particular portion of the headset on the head.
The control functions are similar for both units and include a mute/unmute function and mixer as well as easy access volume control. On the A50, you can mute or unmute the headset by simply moving the attached microphone to the up or down position. When it is up and away from your mouth it automatically mutes and when down and in front it unmutes the microphone.
Mixamp Pro TR
The mixamp for the A40 is external and the A50 has an internal mixamp in the ear cup piece on the right side. The advantage of having an external setup is you can use with other mixamps for direct communication and this unit also has some sound processing included as well.
The overall sound quality of both units is excellent and there is not a significant or even noticeable difference between them in the sound performance department. Each has 40mm drivers that provide excellent sound that is capable of booming clear audio effects and pristine sound quality. The 7.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound makes a huge difference and is a big part of the excellent sound capabilities of these headsets. With the high-quality sound output, it is not difficult to completely immerse your mind into your game or movie of choice.
Final Thoughts – Which is Better?
As far as performance, it is very difficult to put one of these headsets significantly above the other. The best headset choice will most likely be determined by a few things for most users when it comes to choosing between these models, price, wired/wireless and battery life.
There is a $50 cost difference between the A40 and A50, with the A50 being more expensive due to its wireless feature. While $50 can be a significant amount of money, if wireless is an important feature and you will be using the headset frequently, then it may well be worth it. You can check out the latest pricing discounts on the A50 here.
Also, keep in mind, the battery life is long but limited with the A50 which means a bit more attention is needed to the power needs of the headset. Check this listing for pricing on the A40. Regardless of which model you end up choosing, both are an excellent choice for gaming headsets that provide a full set of features and excellent sound quality.