The controls are on the ears, with three buttons on each side. On the right there's Previous, Next and Pause; on the left you'll find the volume controls and a button for making or answering phone calls. Stereo sound is carried over the Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP), and if your player supports AVRCP (Audio Video Remote Control Profile) then you'll be able to control playback too. We had no problems connecting and controlling a variety of devices supporting both profiles - the only challenge being to remember what each button does.
Motorola's S9: comfortable? Depends on the shape of your head
The bulge also houses the obligatory blue flashing light that such devices always seem to sport, though all the longhairs should be able to conceal it.
Sound quality was good, though as the volume increases the bass drops away until the S9 starts to sound like a cheap set of in-ear buds, but that's only at very high volume. In general, they were comparable to a normal set of earbuds, but nothing spectacular.
The range of the headphones was impressive, though somewhat dependent on the transmitting device. We had no problems listening to music from an adjoining room, and certainly anywhere in the same room, despite considerable 2.4GHz activity in the area.
We had intermittent sound problems until we established that putting more than one body part between transmitter and receiver completely breaks the connection - wrap a hand round your mobile phone and the signal breaks up badly. The same effect can be achieved by placing a hand over the bulge in the headphones. This was more acute than we've seen before on any Bluetooth device, but should rarely be a problem in normal usage.
The headphones do have a microphone hidden somewhere on them, and can be used with the normal headset profile for answering and making phone calls. The sound switches to mono, and comes only from the left ear piece, while the microphone picks up a rather blurred version of your voice. Adequate for taking an unexpected call while travelling, but not up to replacing a decent headset.
If your hair goes down to your collar, and your head is more round than long, then Motorola's S9 is what Bluetooth promised to deliver: stereo audio wirelessly. You'll get better sound out of a decent pair of buds, but they won't look so good or let you wander around freely without wires to hold you back.
Motorola MotoRokr S9 Bluetooth headphones
...of Motorola's policies not the headset.
A friend has one of these and loves it. I was asking him about it, and was interested in buying one for myself.
Then the bombshell... he commented that at one point one of the rubber in-ear bits got knocked off and lost. He called Motorola to buy a replacement. They would not sell him one. His only option is to buy a whole new headset.
I wouldn't touch this thing with a 10-meter pole...
I picked up one of these units (thankfully not at the horrifying retail of $130, but a decent lunch cheaper than $100)
Battery life: good
Range: acceptable with line of sight (Bluetooth? Nah, maybe they're IR?)
Sound: Quality OK but you sure aren't going to damage your hearing with them. Phone portion works acceptably.
I do regret the purchase for the most part. See other reviews for detailed descriptions.
This thing is pants
I tested one of these, it's complete pants. Yes, it's uncomfortable, yes, the buds don't really fit IN your ears, nor ON your ears (so intrusive AND don't block out noise), blurb says they're "adustable"... which is not strictly true, you can only rock the whole unit up or down. Sitting on a highish-backed chair? Bulge at the back keeps bumping annoyingly.
Music sound quality? Average at best for BT headset, well below a set of wired earbuds. Call sound quality? Average. Repeated breaks in connection? You betcha.
The controls are annoyingly hard to locate by touch, and they're so incredibly sensitive that just brushing them knocks it to the next track/volume up or what have you. I didn't try, but buyer reports I've seen say that using it during gym (i.e. sweating) toasts them. So bang goes their USP that they're good for "active use".
Basically most BT headsets suck, so rated against them it maybe deserves a 70% rating versus the best possible BT headset. As a product on its own it gets about a 50% rating ito it's intended functionality.
Catch up 'El Reg..
I've had a pair of these for about 6 months and still love them.
Ability to charge from USB is great (if only my Nokia 6300 did that!).
If they are too tight you can 'bend' them open a bit.
The in-ear sleeve things can pop off quite easily if caught by a pocket etc.
Sound quality is excellent for me (192kbps MP3 from Nokia 6300).
Controls are small, fiddly and sensitive and take a fair bit of getting used to but are fine when you do.
They can fit in a largish inside jacket pocket.
I've had these for a few months now and generally I like them. First off they dont rest on my neck, no where near it.
I was worried about the battery life to start with, but its actually not that bad, because you save battery on your phone to a certain extent.
Also, I have long hair and if I put my hair over them I look like a wierdo (well more like one).
In the manual it says to put the player device in the top third of your body, however I find that my back trouser pocket is best as it has line of sight to the bit at the back then.
My main concern when using them in the office is that the battery will run out, causing my phone to start playing out of its speaker exposing my bad music taste to all! (It will beep twice before running out but you could easily miss it).