Sunday, March 15, 2015

The Bluetooth headset no one makes.


I try to keep my every day carry bag as light as possible while maintaining the functionality I need on a regular basis.  Over the years I’ve managed to  find the tight tools to meet my needs except for one item, a Bluetooth headset I can use with all my devices to listen to music (stereo) as well as have a conversation with someone via phone/Internet.  Yes, Bluetooth stereo headsets that double as a phone headset exist but I’m a little fussy about how I want my headset to feel and act.

What it is that I really want;

  • Bluetooth – no wires, with controls for volume and mute, can be used with all of my devices without the need for a separate USB dongle
  • Stereo – I don’t want to carry separate headset for voice calls  and listening to stereo music. In addition having the audio from a call in both ears helps me focus when I’m in noisy environments. When driving or in another environment where its not legal or appropriate to cover both ears I need the earpiece to be small and light enough, and the band flexible enough, that I can leave one earphone behind or below my ear.
  • Adjustable boom microphone – I want my calls to be clear to both myself and the other party and the best way I have found to do this, even with noise cancelling microphones, is to have the microphone as close to my mouth as possible.
  • Behind the head headset band – I’d be much more likely to wear my ideal headset for long periods of time which means it need to be very comfortable and not interfere with activities I’m doing.  For me this means I need a headset where the band connecting the earpieces goes behind the head rather than over the top so that I can wear a baseball cap or other hat while using it.
  • Folding – the headset needs to have some pivot points that allow it to fold into a contact for for packing in my bag.

Despite my best efforts and those of friends tech savvy enough to know what I’m looking for, of those requirements the best I can seem to get is 4 out of 5.  I currently have a great wired stereo headset (a Logitech 555, pictured below) with adjustable boon microphone and behind the head band that folds flat for carrying in my bag  . Unfortunately no Bluetooth (yes I realize I could connect I to a standalone Bluetooth transceiver but that is another piece to have to carry and clip on.


I’ve also found Bluetooth headsets (not stereo) with an adjustable  boom but no behind the head band and recently I found a Bluetooth stereo behind the ear headset that is small enough it doesn’t need to be folded for packing but doesn’t have a boom microphone.

If you know of anything that meets my needs please leave a comment.

No comments: