January 03, 2020
Puro Sound Labs has been focusing on protecting childrens’ hearing for a while now, with a range of headphones that limit volume to levels and won’t cause any damage. But kids don’t just listen to music, they play video games too. That’s where the Puro Sound Labs PuroGamer headset comes in. But is this kid-focused gaming headset good at more than just keeping things quiet?
If there’s one defining trait of the PuroGamer, it’s simplicity. There’s just not that much to this headset. You don’t need any dongles or software—just plug it in and play. It’s still got the requisite light-up bits, but everything else about it is pretty straightforward.
The PuroGamer is a pretty comfortable gaming headset. With a metal frame and cushioned foam around the headband, it feels pretty sturdy too. The headphones feature thick leatherette pads, which are soft, though gamers with glasses won’t get as comfortable a seal as with a material like velour.
Connecting and using the headset is easy. Everything unique is handled on the hardware side, so whether you want to listen on a PC or a console like the Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox One, all you’ve got to do is plug it in.
In terms of actually using the PuroGamer, I never ran into any issues. It’s got a handy little in-line control unit for adjusting volume and switching between 3.5mm and USB inputs. Everything is simply laid out and easy to use.
The detachable 3.5mm microphone is flexible, so it shouldn’t take much effort to find a position that works for you. I needed to tinker with it a little, as it picked up breath rather easily. However for some reason, Puro Sound Labs decided to put arguably the brightest light on the headset at the tip of the mic. It wasn’t an issue all the time, but every so often it was pretty distracting.
Gaming with the PuroGamer is just as straightforward as you’d probably expect, given how this review has gone. In the early phase of using this headset, the band would start feeling a little tight a few hours into particularly long gaming sessions. However it really just takes a little time to break everything in.
This is a stereo gaming headset, so you won’t find any surround sound functionality whatsoever. In most cases this frankly isn’t a big deal at all. I played through the newly re-released Halo Reach using this headset, and even two-channel audio felt like enough to give me a decent sense of my surroundings.
However, this headset, as with most of Puro Sound Labs headphones, is aimed at kids, a demographic where Fortnite is far and away the most popular game. Fortnite also happens to be one of the few games where surround sound is actually pretty important. Omitting the feature isn’t that big a deal, but it feels like a bit of an oversight, given the target audience.
Outside of that, the volume limit never caused me any issues, but then, I’ve never been one to seek a brown note in my explosions. 85dB isn’t all that quiet, so you really shouldn’t have any issues hearing everything, at least while you’re at home.
If you’re a parent looking for a headset for your kid, almost certainly.
Whether you game on a PC or a console, the PuroGamer nails the central need of a gaming headset: it’s a simple audio solution. This headset is comfortable for gaming sessions that stretch well past bedtime (but no one would do that) and sturdy enough to survive the trials and tribulations of a young gamer’s tantrums. The volume limit is a great addition for kids, and while the lack of surround sound is a bit of a shame, it’s not that big of a deal.
On top of all that, the headset’s sub-$50 price means replacing it won’t hurt too much, either. There are plenty of completely fine options around this price range, but none tailored to children’s hearing needs. Parents, pay attention, this is the one you’re looking for.