Combining Bluetooth and 2.4GHz wireless, the new HyperX Cloud MIX Buds true wireless earbuds offer a different take on the gaming audio experience. Coming in at $150, are these the way to go for your next gaming audio purchase? Be sure to hit the video below to check out all of the details.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen TWS earbuds for gaming – we’ve also been hands-on with the EPOS GTW 270. True wireless earbuds offer a different experience for gaming than the standard over-ear headset configuration that we usually see.
Out of the box
Included in the box with the HyperX Cloud MIX Buds is a wireless 2.4GHz dongle, a USB-C dock adapter, a USB-C cable, the charging case, and two additional sets of silicone ear tips, as well as an additional rubber protective cover. HyperX included a different decorative cover that can be installed on the case to demonstrate that there can be aftermarket decorative cases for the Cloud Mix Buds.
Without the rubber cover, the case is very simple. On the front is a HyperX logo with a small LED status light that will glow to show the status of the battery charge as well as flash blue when in Bluetooth pairing mode. On the back is a single button that can be used to check the status of the battery as well as enter pairing mode.
On the bottom is a USB-C port for charging the case. It’s also kind of interesting that the case won’t really sit flat without the rubber cover.
The earbuds themselves have that kind of Airpod-inspired style with arms that come down toward the user’s mouth. There is a small HyperX logo on the outside and a single touch-capacitive button on each earbud near the top.
HyperX Cloud MIX Buds: Video
HyperX Cloud MIX Buds: Comfort
I think that true wireless earbuds are a bit more user-specific than headphones when it comes to comfort. For me, I had a hard time getting them to feel like they were properly in my ears with a good seal without putting a fatiguing pressure on my ears. The large portion of the body didn’t work well with my ears to get a comfortable fit.
Here’s an example of what I’m talking about when compared to the super affordable EarFun Free Pro wireless earbuds. There is a bit more of a stem from the tip of the earbud to where the body starts to flare out and enlarge. This lets the ear tip sit deeper in my ear without pressure from the body of the earbud pressing against my ear.
Obviously, everyone’s ears are different, but this is my experience with them. For me, I don’t feel like I can get a good seal and get long-term comfort. When I felt like a had a good seal, there was enough pressure that my ears became fatigued after a few hours of listening or gaming.
There are two additional sets of eartips available, but I found the middle size to work best for me.
Featuring Bluetooth 5.2, the Cloud Mix Buds are great for gaming on the go. While not latency-free like the 2.4GHz connection, Bluetooth 5.2 is about as good as you can get.
My only complaint with Bluetooth is that it can’t be used simultaneously with the 2.4GHz connection. This is a feature that I love on gaming headsets – especially those for Xbox. The 2.4GHz dongle will have to be removed from the dock or the connected device powered off to switch over to the Bluetooth connection. When connected via Bluetooth and the dongle is plugged in, the 2.4GHz connection will override Bluetooth.
HyperX describes this as a feature as it kind of acts like a switch to go back and forth between Bluetooth and 2.4GHz, but in my experience switching back to Bluetooth still requires me to go into my Bluetooth settings and click on the HyperX Cloud MIX Buds, which isn’t a seamless switching experience.
HyperX Cloud MIX Buds: How do they sound?
With EQ turned off, the earbuds sound full and powerful – they are a lot of fun without being too bass-heavy. The low-end sound is huge thanks to 12mm drivers. It hits low all the way through the bass notes in “Solar Sailer” from the Tron: Legacy soundtrack. Impressive 10-20.4kHz frequency response on paper hits hard when in use.
Highs are also bright and clear but never harsh. Cymbals, vocals, and on the gaming side, gunshots all come through clearly. In this default form, it seems to have a fairly neutral EQ. Oftentimes, gaming-focused headphones can emphasize frequencies for more power or a more immersive experience.
Stereo separation and positioning are also commendable for both listening to music and gaming. Playing the new Season of Battlefield 2042, I felt that I could accurately tell where opponents were and pick out footsteps and other key audio cues well. If you want more of an edge, though, there is some pretty deep audio customization from the NGenuity app, which is available for iOS, and Windows and has Android support coming soon as well.
An iOS app enables customizing the earbuds. Upon opening the NGenuity app, there is a quick reference image for battery levels. In the upper right is a settings tab that shows the name, firmware version, and app version. Going back to the main screen, under the status section are the controls for EQ. There is a quick on/off toggle and the ability to swipe between two default EQ settings. For more control, tap on the name of the EQ, and here is an area to create and edit presets.
Tweaking the EQ in the app works well to customize the sound. You can easily add a ridiculous amount of bass, or really crank up the high end for clarity. There are five adjustable points, but it would be nice to know how much the frequencies are being adjusted by a boost or cut.
Thankfully, EQ is persistent through connections. I made some tweaks on the iOS app, and when I connected it again to the 2.4gHz dongle, the same EQ was present on my PC.
The touch controls can also be customized from the app. There are adjustments for single, double, and triple tap, as well as a long touch. By default long touch is disabled, but I changed this to control volume.
The HyperX Cloud MIX Buds also have the handy feature of auto-pausing audio when one of the earbuds is removed, but it takes about two seconds to actuate which is a bit inconvenient. This can be disabled from the app as well.
And while the Cloud Mix Buds do have a built-in microphone that works with the 2.4Ghz connection, unlike the EPOS GTW 270, vocal quality isn’t great when compared to almost any dedicated gaming headset. It works in a pinch but is definitely not the best way to stay in communication with squad-mates.
Talking with earbuds in your ears also gives a different experience as your voice kind of reverberates a bit more inside your ears – it’s kind of like when you plug your ears and talk. So while there might not be a need for mic monitoring with this, coughing, clearing my throat, or even eating is much more audible when wearing earbuds.
HyperX Cloud MIX Buds: Battery life
HyperX claims up to 10 hours on the Cloud MIX Buds with an additional 23 hours from the charging case. This is in Bluetooth mode. In the 2.4GHz mode, battery life is closer to six hours. This also varies based on volume. While that may not be enough for some endurance gamers, that’s plenty for me – especially given the ways that this fatigued my ears. That is still more than the EPOS GTW 270, though.
Personally, I don’t think these earbuds are for me. I much prefer a traditional pair of over-ear headphones for gaming like the HyperX Cloud Alpha Wireless – this has been my go-to lately and I don’t think I’ve even had to recharge the battery yet.
That being said, the HyperX Cloud MIX Buds can fit a specific need if you don’t like over-ear headphones, hate cables, or just want something small and discrete for streaming. The dual-purpose Bluetooth and 2.4GHz wireless are great for gaming both at home and on the go. The deep EQ controls make them versatile for both music and gaming. In their default EQ mode, they offer a fun gaming and listening experience that can be easily tweaked to specific scenarios.
So for $150, if it ticks the boxes that you’re looking for, then it’s worth picking up. I just hope that it fits your ears better than it did mine.
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