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“What is the best Bluetooth headset?”

May 28, 2015

By Danny Hayasaka

I’m often asked, “What is the best Bluetooth headset?” The answer is always, “That depends”.

Let’s first understand Bluetooth. Bluetooth isn’t a mystical, magical power. It’s short-range wireless technology. There are currently three main wireless range categories for Bluetooth.

  • Class 3 – up to 3ft range
  • Class 2 – up to 33ft range – Most commonly found in mobile devices
  • Class 1 – up to 300ft – certain commercial grade Bluetooth headsets offer this range

Additionally, there are various versions, profiles and protocol stacks. Perhaps in another blog, we can get into those. For now, let’s focus on Bluetooth headsets.

Like any other communications and collaboration device, the use case will determine which headset is most appropriate. Because our company focuses on B2B, I’ll narrow my options to commercial/professional grade products. There are a TON of consumer-grade Bluetooth headsets available. I focus on business communications devices.

We’ll need to understand the environment. Is user in private office, open office, car, airport, coffee shop, etc.? Additionally we’ll need to understand the application, is it FaceTime, Skype, Google + Hangouts or is it an enterprise-grade UC platform like Microsoft Skype for Business/Lync, Cisco Jabber, or other. In addition to a mobile device, will the user need to connect to a PC or laptop? What about a desk phone?

How, what, when and where to start to determine which Bluetooth headset will be the better fit. Additionally, personal wearing style preferences also help you to choose.

Here are some suggestions for Bluetooth headsets based on use case:

  • Commercial Drivers or users in very noisy areas will require strong noise canceling mics and extremely long talk times. There are no better than VXi when it comes to noise canceling mics and 20+Hrs of talk time:
    • VXi BlueParrott Bluetooth Headsets (single connectivity however you can order VXi BT2 USB Adapter for connectivity to PC/Laptop)
      • VXi B350-XT+ (24hrs talk time)
      • B250-XT+ (20+ hrs talk time)
    • Microsoft Skype for Business/Lync Mobile Users – Laptop and Mobile connectivity
      • Plantronics Voyager Edge UC-M (B255-M)
      • Plantronics Voyager Legend UC M (B235-M)
      • Jabra Stealth UC-MS
      • Jabra Motion UC-MS
      • Jabra Motion UC+ MS
      • Sennheiser Presence UC ML
    • Unified Communications (Cisco, Avaya, etc.) Mobile Users – Laptop and Mobile
      • Plantronics Voyager Edge UC (B255)
      • Plantronics Voyager Legend UC M (B235)
      • Jabra Stealth UC
      • Jabra Motion UC
      • Jabra Motion UC+
      • Sennheiser Presence UC
      • VXi VoxStar UC
BlueParrott B350-XT Bluetooth Headset

BlueParrott B350-XT Bluetooth Headset

Whenever I’m asked for a Bluetooth headset with the “best” noise canceling mic. Only one brand comes to mind: BlueParrott. Hands down, based on the multiple Bluetooth headsets I’ve evaluated, BlueParrott’s Bluetooth headsets have the best noise canceling mics and the BlueParrott B350-XT Bluetooth Headset in no exception. Typically the “truckers” headset of choice, however, more and more folks need really good noise canceling mics.

BlueParrott B350-XT Bluetooth Headset Review

BlueParrott B350-XT Bluetooth Headset Review

The BlueParrott B350-XT Bluetooth Headset does not disappoint!What’s in the box? B350-XT™ Headset with Leatherette Ear Cushion, Spare Foam Ear Cushion, Spare Microphone Windscreen, USB Charging Cable, AC/DC Wall Charger, Auto (DC) Adapter, Quick-Start Guide, Warranty and Compliance Document (not pictured)

Logitech CC3000e Review

By Danny Hayasaka

April 7, 2014

I can’t believe I haven’t written about the Logitech CC3000e!?

This is a super exciting product. All the buzz these days is “collaboration”. There are numerous web-based collaboration platforms customers are using: Microsoft Lync, Cisco Jabber, WebEx, Bluejeans, Zoom, Skype, Google+ Hangouts, GoToMeeting, Vidyo, etc.

There hasn’t really been a good solution for web-based collaboration meeting outside of 1-4 people using standard USB webcam and USB speakerphone.

When you have 5-10 people, you really need a more robust solution. You need a better speakerphone and you definitely need a better camera. The Logitech CC3000e is the solution.

It’s a USB device that is PC and Mac compatible and is compatible/optimized/certified with all the major collaboration platform providers.

What you get in the box: Speakerphone, Camera, Remote Control, Powered Hub, Wall/Table Mount, Two 16-foot cables for Speakerphone/Hub and Camera/Hub Connection, USB cable for Hub/PC Connection, Adhesive solution for hub mounting, Power adapter and Quick Start Guide.

Set Up: The actual set up is easy. What may help make it even easier is if you determine “where” the camera and speaker will go? Actually connecting the camera and speakerphone to the hub is easy. Connecting the USB cable to a PC is simple. And just about anyone can connect the power adapter to the wall.

Use: I personally have had multiple video calls across a variety of platforms: Microsoft Lync, Skype, Bluejeans, Zoom, GoToMeeting, Vidyo and more. The picture clarity and audio were great. I can hear and be heard clearly. With the handy remote control, I can pan, tilt and zoom camera to position it to exactly what I want the viewer to see. I have some pictures in my office that I like to zoom in on to show the powerful zoom and just really nice crisp video. Perfect for zooming in on a whiteboard. There is one preset webcam angle. That makes it nice to zero back in if during call cam has been pointing here and there. There is also a lens security cover so you can rest assured you are not seen if you don’t wish to be.

In addition to connecting via USB to PC/Laptop/Mac the speakerphone also has Bluetooth and NFC (Near Field Communication). This allows you to have better audio for a conference call from your mobile device (tablet, smartphone).

Conclusion: The Logitech CC3000e gets two thumbs way up. There is so much versatility with this device. Set up and use are simple. Because it’s USB, it works across multiple platforms plus it’s Bluetooth and NFC enabled. This is great for any organization looking to enhance their meetings, for interviews, training, teaching, brainstorming sessions, for collaborating. The BEST part is the price. Normally video codecs with PTZ cams can cost thousands and thousands of dollars and possibly a proprietary platform/infrastructure. The Logitech CC3000e is ONLY $999!!! The only negative thing about the CC3000e is that we can’t keep them on our shelves!!! I’m not the only one who is impressed and sees the value of this device. Order yours today!