Aliph Jawbone Prime Bluetooth headset
Is wind a problem during conversation..?
This is a much-improved system and in our tests there were no audibility issues even when driving – the engine noise didn’t intrude and even the open window had little impact. The new earbud works well to hold the Prime in its proper place and even holding the sensor away from the cheek didn’t spoil things entirely.
Also available in black
None of this addresses that wind problem, though, which was certainly an issue before. The new technology here is Sensor Signal Fusion which utilises the cheekbone sensor’s signal. Although the output from the VAS isn’t intended for sound reproduction on its own, it does form part of the sonic reconstruction that the Sensor Signal Fusion performs from its three input sources.
The VAS also has the capacity to sense buffeting wind noise and this information, combined with its own low frequency vocal audio together with the higher frequency signals derived from the two microphones, is used to deliver clear speech even when affected by wind noise. Aliph admits this won’t make for interference-free audio in gale-force winds, but it’s aimed at helping with a sudden whippy gust that picks up unexpectedly.
Battery life seems unchanged from last time around – just over a day of regular but not extensive calling. With heavy use you can expect a day's service. Charging times are short; getting up to 80 per cent in half an hour or so. The battery life is extended because after 15 minutes it switches itself off when out of range of the phone. Along with the different-sized earbuds and earloop, there's a neat grey charger with removable USB cable, so you can recharge from a laptop, too.
Light touch: the activity indicator is certainly understated
The new Prime isn’t an unalloyed success, mind, although it’s close. The position of the on light is still wrong, I think. The Jawbone mechanics are simple: the main section is one button and there’s another at the end. Although a design change helpfully makes the separation clear, the discreet light which tells you your Jawbone is on, ready to pair or running out of juice is right under where your finger naturally presses so you can’t see what you’re doing properly.