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Cell Phones & Mobile

Best Bluetooth Headset

When it comes to Bluetooth headsets, fans of hands-free mobile or VOIP (voice over internet protocol) have a lot of choices. They range from headsets priced at well over $100 to much more affordable choices for $20 or $30. But like many things in life, a $130 headset doesn't always mean it's better than a cheaper headset and a cheap headset may cause more problems than its worth. Whether your needs are a headset that can be used by your laptop and your mobile device, or a headset that allows you to carry on a clear conversation, there's a Bluetooth headset for you.

Plantronics Voyager Legend Bluetooth Headset

Plantronics' Voyager Legend is the followup to its well-reviewed and well-received Voyager Pro headset. The company listened to the few points of criticism regarding the headset, making it smaller and shrinking the boom microphone to be less obtrusive. The Legend builds on the Pro's noise cancellation and all-around voice clarity, which is a definite plus. The headset allows for two simultaneous Bluetooth connections, and has enough battery life for seven hours of talk time and 11 days of standby. However, despite its smaller size, the Legend is still one of the larger - if not the largest - headsets on this list. Users have also reported issues with the Legend connecting to Apple's iPhone 5.

Jabra SUPREME Bluetooth Headset

There's no mistaking the Jabra SUPREME — it's a large headphone. Rather than an earbud, like most Bluetooth headsets use, the SUPREME uses a padded earpiece with active noise cancellation, which gives better voice clarity. The boom is also very prominent and will attract attention if you wear it in public, but the closer the mike is to your mouth, the better the other party can understand you. Like most modern headsets, the SUPREME also incorporates noise reduction and voice commands. The SUPREME can connect to two devices simultaneously, and has enough battery life for six hours of talk time and 15 days of standby.

Jawbone ERA Bluetooth Headset - Shadowbox

Jawbone makes a marketing point that the industrial designer Yves Behar gives form to the ideas of its engineers. Beauty, especially when it comes to consumer electronics, is subjective, but what can't be denied is the impressive amount of technology packed into the Jawbone ERA. The headset can handle up to two simultaneous Bluetooth connections, and can be connected with up to eight devices. It also features Jawbone's latest version of its noise reduction solution, or NoiseAssassin, as they call it. Unlike other headsets that are obtrusive, the ERA is out of the way and has impressive battery life — 5.5 hours of talk time and 10 days of standby. The headset also give voice cues, such as low battery warnings.

Plantronics Discovery 975

The Plantronics Discovery 975 is the perfect blend of elegance and simplicity. The 975 has noise cancelling features (both wind and background noise), low battery indicator, comfortable gel inserts, voice prompts, multipoint technology, and a sleek design. The Discovery 975’s multipoint technology allows multiple Bluetooth cell phones to be attached to the device with seamless switching. The only real downside to the Plantronics Discovery 975 is that due to the simple and elegant design, the volume and multi-pairing buttons are very small and somewhat hard to get to. Also, the small design makes the device fragile and prone to breakage with extended use. But overall, the Plantronics Discovery 975 has excellent sound quality, great noise cancelling technology, and a very sleek, professional look that makes it a great choice for both office and personal use.

Jabra EASYGO Bluetooth Earset

Though it's not as flashy as the other headsets on this list, the Jabra EASYGO is well-equipped headset that's priced for tighter budgets. Digital signal processing cleans up the audio on the user's end as well as the voice on the other end of the call. The EASYGO doesn't take voice commands, but it does give voice prompts for events such as a low battery or when it's connected to a device. The EASYGO can connect to two devices at once, and has enough battery life for six hours of talk time or eight days of standby.

Plantronics Voyager PRO Bluetooth Headset

The well-received Plantronics Voyager series of Bluetooth headsets is topped off by the Voyager Pro model. Featuring a dual-mic AudioIQ setup for noise cancellation, this is easily one of the better headsets available today. The technology loaded into this compact headset can separate your voice from the background noise, so call quality remains perfectly clear no matter where you are. The Voyager Pro also features WindSmart technology designed to eliminate wind noise from your conversations. This headset can be worn on either ear thanks to the pivoting mic a feature that may come in handy when you need multiple ear pieces. Comfortable to wear for extended periods of time, the Plantronics Voyager Pro is definitely a winner in performance.

Jawbone ERA Bluetooth Headset - Shadowbox

Jawbone makes a marketing point that the industrial designer Yves Behar gives form to the ideas of its engineers. Beauty, especially when it comes to consumer electronics, is subjective, but what can't be denied is the impressive amount of technology packed into the Jawbone ERA. The headset can handle up to two simultaneous Bluetooth connections, and can be connected with up to eight devices. It also features Jawbone's latest version of its noise reduction solution, or NoiseAssassin, as they call it. Unlike other headsets that are obtrusive, the ERA is out of the way and has impressive battery life — 5.5 hours of talk time and 10 days of standby. The headset also give voice cues, such as low battery warnings.

Plantronics Discovery 975

The Plantronics Discovery 975 is the perfect blend of elegance and simplicity. The 975 has noise cancelling features (both wind and background noise), low battery indicator, comfortable gel inserts, voice prompts, multipoint technology, and a sleek design. The Discovery 975’s multipoint technology allows multiple Bluetooth cell phones to be attached to the device with seamless switching. The only real downside to the Plantronics Discovery 975 is that due to the simple and elegant design, the volume and multi-pairing buttons are very small and somewhat hard to get to. Also, the small design makes the device fragile and prone to breakage with extended use. But overall, the Plantronics Discovery 975 has excellent sound quality, great noise cancelling technology, and a very sleek, professional look that makes it a great choice for both office and personal use.

Jabra BT530 Bluetooth Headset

The Jabra BT530 is more than just a simple Bluetooth headset. Jabra claims that this is the first Bluetooth headset with Noise Blackout an advanced noise cancellation algorithm. The BT530 uses a dual microphone setup to distinguish between your voice and background noise, and then feeds it through the built-in DSP for optimum sound quality. The result is the ability to hold comfortable conversations, even in noisy environments. The BT530 is also loaded with other advanced features such as intelligent volume control with Audio Shock Protection to ensure that the call volume stays at a perfect level no matter where you are. The BT530 is also comfortable enough to wear all day if required. With the sorts of features offered on the Jabra BT530, it is easily one of the best Bluetooth headsets overall today.

BlueAnt Wireless Q2 Smart Bluetooth Headset

The BlueAnt Q2, the followup to the well-regarded Q1, features a completely voice-controlled interface. Answering a phone is as simple as telling it to take the call or ignoring it. However, the Q2 works off a specific list of commands, unlike more advanced voice recognition software that takes contextual cues (like Apple's Siri). That being said, any user of voice recognition technology will tell you that it's not foolproof. Users have reported excellent call quality and noise reduction, and Android users can have texts read to them. The device also includes A2DP, which allows phones, tablets, and other Bluetooth devices to stream audio, including music, to the Q2.

Wayne Akiyama
I'm a technology enthusiast and all-around gadget freak. I've paid particular attention to the explosion of mobile technology. My interest is in smartphones and feature phones as well as wired and handsfree accessories.
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