LAS VEGAS – HyperX has come a long way in just a few years. Once a producer of internal components, gaming headsets and little else, the HyperX brand has grown to include mice, keyboards, console accessories and mobile add-ons.
And at CES 2020, the company showed off a little bit of everything. Of particular interest were the HyperX Cloud Flight S ($160): a wireless headset that can recharge via Qi, and the HyperX ChargePlay Clutch for Nintendo Switch ($60): a portable Switch grip that recharges the console as you play.
Here’s a brief preview of what to expect from HyperX during the first half of this year. Gamers who enjoy smart physical designs and just a few bells and whistles should keep an eye out.
HyperX Cloud Flight S headset
Wireless gaming headsets are a great investment. Not only do they keep your desk clutter-free, but over the last few years, they’ve almost completely eliminated lag, signal loss and short battery lives. The HyperX Cloud Flight S ($160, and arriving in February) has all the features you’d expect from a mid-range wireless gaming headset: excellent sound quality, a comfortable fit, a removable mic, a surround sound toggle, two different equalization modes, a chatmix and so forth.
Where the Cloud Flight S differentiates itself is in the way you charge it Rather than plugging it into a power source via microUSB (although you can do this, too), you simply lay its left earcup down on a Qi charging pad. This way, you can recharge the Cloud Flight S in-between gaming sessions without having to sacrifice a USB port. No other gaming headset has ever employed this feature, as far as we're aware.
As it connects with a USB dongle, the Cloud Flight S is compatible with PC and PS4. However, since there’s no 3.5 mm audio port, you won’t be able to use the headset with a mobile device, an Xbox One controller or a Nintendo Switch in handheld mode. (HyperX reps weren’t sure whether it would work with a docked Switch. The best answer for now is “probably,” but we’ll test this when we get a review unit.)
HyperX ChargePlay Clutch for Nintendo Switch
Another innovative gadget is the HyperX ChargePlay Clutch for Nintendo Switch ($60, coming this month). While the product’s name is a mouthful, its application is easy enough to explain. The ChargePlay Clutch is a handheld grip into which you can plug a Nintendo Switch console. From there, you can connect two rubber Joy-Con grips to the sides and play the Switch in handheld mode, or disconnect the rubber grips and use them like an impromptu controller mount.
To be fair, the ChargePlay Clutch doesn’t make the Switch much more comfortable to hold, although it does provide a lot of stability in a kickstand mode. Instead, the big draw of the peripheral is that it can charge the Switch while you play. The ChargePlay Clutch’s 6,000 mAh battery can completely charge a dead Switch, with enough power left over to give it another hour or two of life, depending on the game.
Charging a Switch while playing it in handheld mode is traditionally not that easy, since wires tend to get everywhere, and most cables can’t charge it very quickly. The ChargePlay Clutch eliminates that problem by plugging directly into the Switch’s charging port, no wires required. And since the device also makes the Switch a little more comfortable to hold, there’s no real downside to using this HyperX gadget.
HyperX will also release a similar device for mobile phones called the HyperX ChargePlay Clutch for Mobile ($60, arriving in the second quarter of the year). As a cool feature, this accessory can recharge phones via Qi wireless charging; otherwise, it’s just a phone grip. There are no buttons or additional features.
HyperX Pulsefire Raid mouse
Up until now, HyperX has kept its mice pretty simple. But the HyperX Pulsefire Raid ($60, and available this month) aims to add a little complexity for gamers who need more than two thumb buttons. This RGB mouse features four thumb programmable thumb buttons, in addition to its right and left buttons, dots-per-inch (DPI) sensitivity button and clickable scroll wheel.
Aside from that, it sounds pretty similar to existing HyperX mouse, featuring a 16,000 DPI sensor, durable switches and compatibility with HyperX’s NGenuity software. Sixty dollars is fairly inexpensive for a mouse with this many programmable buttons, so that’s potentially a big selling point for MMO, RTS and MOBA players.
HyperX Alloy Origins Aqua key switch
Last, but not least, HyperX is finally rolling out the second of its three proprietary key switches. You may remember that the HyperX Alloy Origins keyboard debuted with the quiet, linear HyperX Red switch. A version of the keyboard with quiet, tactile Aqua switches will debut in March for $110. These keys feel very similar to Cherry MX Browns, making them suitable for both quiet office work and frantic gaming sessions.
There’s a sneak peek of what HyperX has in store for early 2020. Tom’s Guide will have full reviews for most of these products within the next few months, so stay tuned to learn about your next must-have gaming accessory – or your next “I’ll wait for a sale” purchase.
Be sure to check out our CES 2020 hub for the latest news and hands-on impressions out of Las Vegas.