The built-in battery provides six hours of talk time, and five days on standby, Plantronics claims, and we found that to be on the nose.
The UC pack bundles a Bluetooth adaptor
The call quality was extremely good. The headset uses a twin-microphone noise-cancelling technology called AudioIQ2, which Plantronics claims can block out as much as 80dB of background noise. The stainless steel screens protecting the microphones are designed to cut out wind noise.
We made some calls while walking along a busy, cold and windy street in London’s West End, and the people we spoke to all attested to the clarity of the voice input.
As well as the Bluetooth adaptor, the ‘UC’ package also includes a piece of software called PerSono which lets you configure the headset for use with corporate VoIP systems. This also worked perfectly well when making calls with Skype, so you don’t have to buy an expensive system from Cisco in order to use it properly. The PerSono software only runs on Windows, but the Voyager Pro works like a standard Bluetooth headset and we were able to pair it with a Bluetooth-equipped Mac with no problems.
Can be set up for Skype as well as anything your company uses
The complete Voyager Pro UC kit is rather pricey, but will certainly be useful for office workers who want to use a single headset for both mobile and PC-based telephone calls and which looks the part. If you just want a nice headset for your mobile phone then you’ll be better off buying the headset on its own. Even then, £50-60 is still relatively expensive for a Bluetooth headset these days, but the design and call quality are impressive enough to justify that price if you’re an ardent Bluetooth addict. ®
More Wireless Audio Reviews...
Plantronics Voyager Pro UC
We did review a Sennheiser headset that does this a while back.
Desk phone integration has been around for ages!
Integrating with a desk phone (one that's capable of taking a headset) isn't a hard concept, or even a new one. I'm really not sure why you think it's not available.
Just looking at what Plantronics offer, check out the Voyager 510S Bluetooth Headset System and the Savi Office range. Pretty much every major headset manufacturer makes a bluetooth version of one of their cordless headsets that can also be paired with a mobile phone.
If you're looking for something else then maybe you should clarify what you actually need, because at the moment you seem to be swearing about the lack of something that *already exists*.
Why? Because serious people use them.
These things (the UC variants that ship with USB dongles) are geared at business travellers who use UC products regularly. They're not aimed at you. The fact that you don't like BT headsets in general is irrelevant.
We've got a number of heavy UC users (Microsoft OCS) who carry netbooks and ultraportables when they travel. Our stock headset for use in the office is a corded USB plantronics, but they're way too big and bulky for travel. Some of our guys use standard BT headsets, but there are all sorts of hassles with voice quality and pairing. Other guys carry analog earbud headsets and plug in to the onboard headphone/mic ports on the laptop, but again the audio quality (particularly the Mic) is often iffy. We also have a number of Polycom C100's, but a speakerphone isn't always appropriate.
The idea with products like the one reviewed is that they're small, portable, give great audio quality, don't tie you to your laptop, and present to the O/S as a standard USB audio device. There's no stuffing about with the O/S BT stack to get things paired, and no worries about the particular laptop having good/shitty BT signal (looking at you, Dell XPS M1330). It's supposed to be something that's easy to carry and just works, really well. If it can be paired with your mobile, that's good too. Sometimes it's important to be able to type two handed while on the phone, without using shoddy built-in speakerphones. Most importantly tho, it's a high quality headset for your UC app that you an carry around with you.
We, as professional IT people, need to be able to provide these sorts of things to staff, so I'm actually glad that The Reg took the time to review it.
.. his t*ts suck.
Any other bad humour you need?
I've got another Plantronics - love it
It's the one without boom, the 520. Absolutely quality piece of work, and I have it work with an iPhone 3GS and a laptop (using a standard Toshiba Bluetooth stack on XP - works a charm with Skype).
The only occasional hiccup is that the iPhone isn't very good at convincing it to switch back to the iPhone channel, one day I may even bother to read the manual.
On the basis of wearer comfort, build as well as voice quality I will certainly give the boom version a try - I've always been a believer of putting a mike close to where the sound is.
I personally don't care two beans about what it looks like - I know how comfortable it is, and in the car it beats the bejeebes out of any other handsfree idee. You really notice Plantronics has been in the headset business for a long time.
Thanks for the review.