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back to article Ten of the Best... Bluetooth Stereo Headphones

The first Bluetooth headsets were simple mono devices, however as handsets developed into advanced accessories that can play music and video, so headsets have started to develop too. The first step was to add stereo capabilities using a technology known as A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile). And, of course, the headsets …

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I'm sorry

but shouldn't the title have been the 'ten best bluetooth stereo headphones for the chronically overpaid'?

Even the philips pair at 10 cost £14.01 than the quality Jabra set I bought which I have to say sound beautiful and, apart from some initial connection glitches and a size:attachment issues when cycling over 25mph were wonderful value for money.

Who the f*** pays £200 for a set of headphones? (session musicians etc aside)

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Unhappy

No Zoom?

The timing of this list is perfect, just last night I started looking at my options for Stereo Bluetooth headphones. I'd pretty much settled on the "Zoom iHiFi" headphones, because I can't find a bad word about them and they are happily also the cheapest stereo phones I could find. I'm a little disappointed then to find no mention of them in your list, are they complete crap or were they never even reviewed?

Maybe these Top Ten lists could include the also-rans?

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Nice article

Now is there actually a difference in sound quality depending on the bluetooth adapter you plug into your computer or are they all pretty much the same thing?

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Jabra

I've been using the Jabra device for about 6 months and it's great.

Easy to use and it doesn't look silly...

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Can someone please explain to me..

Can someone please explain to me the point of the bluetooth headsets that have wires?

Forgive my simplistic views but a Bluetooth headset, when compared to just a pair of headphones, have the disadvantage of requiring power, the added weight that power requires, and potentially poorer sound quality for the price (e.g. my £20 Senheisser PX100's sound better than my £21 Jabra BT260s). The ONE advantage is the absence of wires.

So, the ones WITH wires have all the disadvantages of bluetooth headphones whilst forgoing the one advantage. If someone can explain, please do.

Incidentally, whilst a bit big and Ugly, the Jabra BT260s, at £21 incl delivery from play.com, sound just as good as the s9's and a lot better AND louder than the Nokias and also come with one of those iPod thingies - handy if you happen to be one of Steve Jobs' soulless minions. The battery also lasts nearly 10 hours - a lot better than most and a major consideration for bluetooth headsets that this group-test seems to have ignored.

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Motorola MotoRokr S9 - Not sweatproof

I have gone through 2 pairs of these headphones and I have lost count of the number of people on various internet discussion forums who have had similar issues (read the comments here for an example - http://blog.treonauts.com/2007/05/treo_a2dp_stere.html).

These headphones should not be used for any activity that generates sweat. They are not sweatproof!! The buttons that are used to adjust volume and track number will stop working within 1-2 workouts from new and will not recover.

They are a nice design, but they are not good for an "active lifestyle".....especially if that lifestyle causes you to sweat.

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I use the Sony's

(Sony Ericsson HBH-DS220)

And they are great, especially like the jabra if anything goes in the phones department you can just lug in new ones and of course normally plug in anything you like.

Most of the rest tbh looked over priced and excessively ponce. Well at least they arn't the white apple rubbish

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Boffin

I thought they were for convenience

Having some gadget that I plug some headphones into is pointless and stupid. I might as well just plug normal headphones into my N95 which lives in a pocket.

I like the Gear4 ones but worry about sound quality.

If I could try them somewhere with my N95 I could be tempted but they are always in bubblewrap.

Also, what is the battery life like? I listen to my N95 about 3-4 hours every day (LONG commute) and a dead headset would be really irritating.

Finally, concerning headphone quality, I have yet to find a set that has the sound quality and comfort of my Philips SBC HS520 headphones. They are several years old but just keep on going.

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aerial location

Location of the aerial makes a big difference, I just got some Sony DR-BT22s for £40. The aerial is on the right hand side - with the player in my left front trouser pocket it occasionally drops out when I am walking (esp if I turn my head to the right) unless I select "connection priority" quality), I assume the body is effective at blocking the signal temporarily (all that water). With the player on the right I have no problems and I have had about 5-6 metres range through walls etc. They do feel a bit fragile due to the folding nature of them though.

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The Sony HBH DS200 are excellent

I have had a pair for a year or so to use with my SE K800i and more recently, a Nokia N95 8G. The sound quality and battery life are excellent. And if you plug in your own head phones (in my case, some larger Sony neck band variety), the sound is even better. The only flaw is that sometimes the Bluetooth connection drops, but that is the phone, not the headset. (Occasional drop out is worse on the Nokia than on the SE. After all, Ericsson invented Bluetooth, so I guess they should know!) BTW, the foam bits from the headset that comes with the HBH DS200 fell out ages ago.

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Re: Can someone please explain to me..

Quite. If people really want a dangly thing round their neck, with corded headphones plugged into it, get a lanyard. No batteries required.

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Unhappy

Sony DR-BT30Q

I'm a bit confused as to why the "10 best" list included the crappy Creative ones but ignored the vastly-superior Sony DT-BT30Q.

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jabra

I have the jabra 3030. Sound quality is excellent, though it could use a bit more volume (that could be the phone I was listening to the music from, though).

One other great feature that wasn't mentioned in the review. It supports two Bluetooth devices concurrently. Listen to music on one device, and if a call comes in on the other, it interrupts your listening to take the call. Excellent feature.

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@Headset with wires

If you plan to do Kata or other exercise routines while listening to something that doesn't fit in your pocket it does have some logic to it.

Kinda like why have an adaptor to plug your mp3 player into your car stereo when you could get an in-car mp3 player.

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Wires ? No thanks

For me the whole point of using Bluetooth is for those times when the wires get in the way and a dongle round the neck negates this. Most phones/mp3 players are small/light enough that they can be worn round the neck with wired phones that are usually better quality and cheaper. I want true wires free while Im working so that Im not constantly catching a wire and pulling an earpiece out.

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HP with active noise cancellation; Philips hi-fi

As I feared, this list omits a new contender: Hewlett Packard's GW470AA, a stereo BlueTooth 2.0 headphone with active noise cancellation. I just bought a pair. I can't vouch for the BlueTooth sound quality, for I can't get it to work with my HTC 6800 (Verizon XV6800). But wired, it sounds decent. Haven't yet tried the noise reduction. I bought it in the U.S. for a bit over $100 shipped.

The best-sounding of all may be Philips' new top-end entry, the SHB9000. It was promised for the Spring 2008 and is available in Europe. But in America, it's nowhere to be found.

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