Logitech G430 Headset Review

NOTE: This is an non-affiliated and non-sponsored review. We purchased this gear ourselves.

I was browsing Amazon for “gaming headset” and the top of the list was the Logitech G430 headset. $40 (retail is allegedly $80) and 4 stars seemed solid, so seemed as good as any other item to review.

But is it any good? Let’s find out.

Looks and material

Logitech G430 box: 3/4 front side.
Logitech G430 box: 3/4 front side.

The box it comes in is solid, and it’s well packaged. Unboxing is a breeze.

The unit is an attractive looking gray and blue combo.

The outer casing and headband are almost all plastic, except for a small amount of metal in the headband, as you would imagine at this price point.

It has a braided speaker cable which is kind of nice. It is however not removable.

It has separate headphone and microphone outputs, but also includes a USB dongle to plug into if you maybe don’t have the proper inputs, or I guess to make things more convenient if you wanted to plug it in on the front of your case or something.

Attached to the speaker cord is a small manual volume control and microphone on/off switch. The microphone on / off is a sliding switch, it feels fine, maybe even a bit stiff. It has a clip on it as well, a nice afterthought in case you want to clip it on to your shirt.

The ear cup and headband padding are covered in some kind of blue fabric. It’s not removable as far as I can tell. It really doesn’t feel all that great. The padding itself feels very elastic and cheap.

The microphone is made from some kind of bendable rubber. It’s easy to move and bend and gets out of the way far enough to not annoy you.

Music

Logitech G430 box: 3/4 back side.
Logitech G430 box: 3/4 back side.

I listen to music a lot when I play so it’s natural to test these out to see how they hold up.

I picked a bunch of songs at random across a few different genres. Songs that I’ve heard a lot on a lot of different headphones and other audio equipment and feel like I have a good idea how it should sound.

I tested all audio using the provided USB dongle, my motherboard sound (Sound Blaster Recon 3Di), and an external Fiio E10K DAC.

Sadly, this headset has probably some of the worst audio I have ever heard. I don’t think I’m exaggerating either. I put it up against a pair of several-year-old Sony MDR7506 headphones, which I don’t think are amazing headphones but they are good reference headphones. The Sony MDR7506 headphones literally stomped on this headset, it’s two different worlds of audio.

The headset music has basically zero depth. Base is either not existent or overly existent and muddy. Guitar riffs are muddy. Voices are distant and flat. It’s like most of the audio gets taken and mashed into the midrange and you lose almost all of the dynamics.

In terms of quality from worst to best would be the USB dongle, mainboard sound, and Fiio E10K DAC.

The USB dongle that comes with this unit is a totally worthless piece of junk. That’s putting it lightly. The only reason you should use this is if you have literally no other option. Not only does it sound awful, it introduces additional background noise to the unit when you plug into it.

The Fiio E10K DAC does a bit to make the audio better, but it can not fix the awful audio quality.

Game sound

Logitech G430 in it's box.
Logitech G430 in it's box.

This is a gaming headset after all. I guess it would be a good idea to see what this sounds like in game.

Counterstrike

The headset actually doesn’t sound as bad in game. You can clearly hear gunfire, footsteps, and teenagers shit talking your mom. But nothing rings out as being true to what it should sound like. Everything suffers from the same problems as the music audio does, but it feels less severe because the dynamic range doesn’t have to be as wide.

The Legend of Heros: Trails of Cold Steel

A sort of oddball game to test a headset game on, but it provides some feedback regardless. Footsteps are really blown out. There is a lot of music, a lot of decent background whimsical music. It all sounds equally awful as the music outlined above. Everything just sounds hollow and weird, even the menus!

Tekken 7

Really more of the same. I feel like I’m beating a dead horse. Poor distant sound. Punches sound kind of good, but everything else is quite bad.

Microphone

As awful as the audio capabilities of this headset are, the mic is surprisingly decent. You can check out the video at the top of the article that includes an audio sample. It’s not great but the overall voice comes through decently, and with less background noise than I would have expected. My voice actually has some tone and depth to it. Certainly worse than even a $20 lapel mic, but very usable.

For some reason when the mic is on though, I can hear myself in the headset audio. I assume that is a feature, although it really brings up a lot of background distortion noise. I would prefer it if I couldn’t hear myself personally.

Verdict

Our score.
Our score.

I was really hoping to be surprised by this headset like the Redragon mechanical keyboard I reviewed last week. I surely wasn’t expecting it to be amazing or anything, but I did expect it to be much better than what it is.

The build is predictably on the cheap side. The microphone sounds OK, but also relays the audio and lots of extra distortion through the headset. The audio quality of this headset is unbearably bad. The provided USB dongle is mostly useless unless you have no other way to connect the audio and microphone plugs.

Save your money, don’t buy the Logitech G430 headset. If money is an issue and you want something under $50, consider just a cheap pair of earbuds and some random cheap mic would probably do better than this headset. If you have a larger budget, on the cheap side of headphones get a pair of Sony MDR7506 headphones for twice the price and they honestly sound several times better than this headset.

The pen name of the illustrious editor of this fine site. Randomly generated for a D&D game called Baldurs Gate. A chaotic good, male, dwarf, dual class fighter/thief.
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