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Fnatic React Plus review

The competitive edge you need

Fnatic React Plus review
(Image: © Future)

Our Verdict

The Fnatic React Plus may be the new gaming headset to beat in the under $100 / £100 / AU$120 price bracket. Excellent audio quality is backed up by a comfortable design, a superb microphone and multi-platform compatibility.

For

  • Incredibly clear and detailed sound
  • Excellent microphone
  • Works on anything

Against

  • 7.1 virtual surround sound feels superfluous
  • Oval earcups won’t be for everyone
  • Some build quality concerns

TechRadar Verdict

The Fnatic React Plus may be the new gaming headset to beat in the under $100 / £100 / AU$120 price bracket. Excellent audio quality is backed up by a comfortable design, a superb microphone and multi-platform compatibility.

Pros

  • + Incredibly clear and detailed sound
  • + Excellent microphone
  • + Works on anything

Cons

  • - 7.1 virtual surround sound feels superfluous
  • - Oval earcups won’t be for everyone
  • - Some build quality concerns

Two-minute review

The Fnatic React Plus is an impressive gaming headset that delivers where it matters. Armed with two 53mm drivers in either earcup, which are calibrated to prevent bass frequencies from overpowering the mids/highs, we’re not exaggerating when we say you’ll perform better in your favorite competitive online multiplayer games when wearing these headphones. 

These aren’t the most comfortable pair of headphones we’ve ever worn, but we’re huge fans of the memory foam, protein leather earpads that conform to your head shape and isolate sound extremely well. The headset’s controls take a pleasing no nonsense approach, too: there’s a dedicated volume wheel, a mic mute button and that’s it. 

Competitive gamers will know that sound is only one part of the equation, however. If you can’t communicate clearly with your teammates, you could cost your squad that vital win. Thankfully the Fnatic React Plus headset’s microphone won’t let you down – we were told that we always sounded crystal clear during voice chat, and that the headset’s microphone actually sounded clearer than some of the more expensive cans we’ve tested like the Astro A50 Wireless Headset.

Falling into that under $100 / £120 / AU$140 sweet spot, you’re getting a lot for your money here, which makes this gaming headset incredibly easy to recommend. Some may find the sound signature slightly bright, but the clarity provided during games is first-rate.

Fnatic React Plus price

The Fnatic React Plus cost $74.99 / £84.99 / AU$140. That pits Fnatic’s headphones in direct competition with the Razer Blackshark V2, HyperX Cloud Alpha and cheaper wireless headphones. 

It’s a lucrative market to target for gaming and audio companies, as some might argue that higher end gaming headsets have diminishing returns when it comes to audio quality, but focus more on additional features instead. 

Design

Fnatic React Plus headset

(Image credit: Future)

The Fnatic React Plus gaming headset has a delightfully understated but considered design. The all black color scheme is embellished with silver accents and tasteful branding, and it helps the headset look smart without screaming “this is for gamers”. Fnatic’s signature orange color can be found inside the earcups, which are lined with large ‘L’ and ‘R’ indicators that let you know how to wear the headset at a glance.

The Fnatic React Plus comes fitted with premium protein leather earcups, but there’s also a pair of velour earcups in the box if you’d prefer more breathability and a more open soundstage. We opted for the leather earcups for the majority of our testing, as we enjoyed the amount of passive isolation and comfort they provided.

Our particular review unit was rather light when it came to clamping force, causing the bottom of the earcups to flair outwards slightly unless we positioned the headset band directly on top of our head. We’ve seen reports that other people haven’t experienced this issue, though, which means build quality could be a bit hit or miss on some units. That being said, we’ve been pleased with the ruggedness of the headset overall and found it remained comfortable during hours of play.

Audio performance

Fnatic React Plus gaming headset

(Image credit: Future)

This is where the Fnatic React Plus surprised us most. For a headset that is focused on esports, we were expecting blown out highs with a harsh sibilant sound. However, the Fnatic React Plus provides a smooth sound signature that’s packed with detail. Bass bleed is also avoided thanks to the headset’s designated frequency chambers that deliver tight bass, but those who enjoy a noticeable thud whenever explosions happen may be disappointed.

When testing the Fnatic React Plus in titles such as PUBG, Call of Duty: Warzone and Halo 5: Guardians, we had no problems whatsoever determining  where an enemy was positioned, or where the latest firefight was taking place. The headset helped us hear the most crucial audio information we needed, but also delivered a natural sound that didn’t make titles we’ve sunk countless hours into come across as artificial in any way. We quickly found ourselves missing the headset’s audio quality when using other headsets that we’d come to depend on when gaming. 

The Fnatic React Plus are incredibly easy to drive, too. With an impedance of 23 Ohms and a frequency response of 20Hz-40kHZ, you won’t have any problems when it comes to volume. These cans get loud, seriously loud, and can be driven by a PS5 DualSense controller or Nintendo Switch with plenty of headroom to spare.

If you care about getting that edge when gaming, then, we can’t find many criticisms of what the Fnatic React Plus deliver, though the 7.1 virtual sound that comes when connected to PCs via the USB sound card seems rather superfluous in a world where spatial audio solutions like Dolby Atmos and Windows Sonic exist. Still, the effect does create a far wider soundstage which some players may enjoy, and it is plug and play so you don't need to download any additional software or specific drivers. 

Microphone quality and device compatibility

Fnatic React Plus USB soundcard

(Image credit: Future)

Another strength of the Fnatic React Plus is its microphone. Not only is it detachable, which has become a feature we really like to see on gaming headsets, but the cardioid design and pop filter ensured we were always heard loud and clear when calling out to our fellow Spartans in Halo 5: Guardians, or instructing our crew members when sailing through stormy weather in Sea of Thieves.

The headset doesn’t include mic monitoring, though. If you prefer to hear yourself back when you speak to avoid shouting, the Fnatic React Plus might have you raising your voice louder than you’d like, particularly as the earcups do such a good job at isolating noise. You can switch to the headset’s velour earpads, however, which provide less passive noise isolation.

Should I buy the Fnatic React Plus gaming headset?

Buy it if...

You’re a gamer who loves competitive games
The Fnatic React Plus are specifically designed to help you get the drop on your opponents. Though the drivers are tuned to help emphasize footsteps and the like, they never sounded harsh or lacking depth. They’re also extremely loud, so volume won’t be a concern here.


You love chatting with your friends
If you’re the kind of gamer who regularly jumps in a party to chat with friends, the boom microphone on the Fnatic React Plus is worthy of the “broadcast quality” marketing claim. We received nothing but compliments from those we spoke to when using the headset’s mic, and the gooseneck microphone arm is satisfyingly strong and flexible. 


You want flexibility
The Fnatic React Plus can be used on any device with 3.5mm headphone jack. You’ll need to plug it in via USB if you want to make use of 7.1 virtual surround sound, but with spatial audio tech like Dolby Atmos and Windows Sonic providing a far more convincing experience, this isn’t a huge loss.


Don't buy it if...

You’re a bassline junkie
One area where the Fnatic React Plus falls a bit flat is how it handles bass. This is by design, though, as although you’ll still feel the weight of an explosion, lower frequencies won’t drown out those all important mids and highs that can help you pinpoint an enemy. That being said, if you’d like your head to wobble whenever something goes boom on screen, we’d suggest looking elsewhere.


You plan on listening to music
The Fnatic React Plus sound great when gaming, but when listening to music they’re rather underwhelming. The way the headset’s drivers are tuned don’t do music any favors, with vocals sounding far too sharp, and instruments overly bright. It’s passable, but we wouldn’t reach for these cans to listen to our favorite artists.


You play a lot cinematic, single-player games
As great as the Fnatic React Plus headset sounds, they don’t have the widest soundstage we’ve heard, especially when compared to open-back headphones. While you certainly won’t miss out on any details, they can also be slightly fatiguing to use when you’re playing more cinematic open-world games due to their onus on capturing mid to high frequencies. 


Adam Vjestica

Adam is a Senior Gaming Writer at TechRadar. A law graduate with an exceptional track record in content creation and online engagement, Adam has penned scintillating copy for various technology sites and also established his very own award-nominated video games website. He’s previously worked at Nintendo of Europe as a Content Marketing Editor and once played Halo 5: Guardians for over 51 hours for charity. (He’s still recovering to this day.)