Bluetooth headsets seem common as muck these days with the virtually very manufacturer trying its hand and producing one. So what makes Plantronic’s latest attempt - the Voyager L510 stand out from the crowd? We don the headset and make some calls.
The big difference here is that with a bolt on desk module (sold separately) you can use the headset to connect to your landline as well.
But first the headset itself. The unit is a light 15g in weight and sits comfortably on your ear. Shipped in the box are three earpieces of varying sizes so big or small there is one to fit. Likewise with a quick twist of the rather subtle rubber, it’s made from you can bend it to fit both left and right ears.
On board you’ve got the usual array of buttons including volume and call accept. The volume buttons could have been placed slightly lower than they are, but this is a pure aesthetic thing we found in our tests. For others they might be placed just right.
Extending from the main body of the headset is the swivel boom and this means it can be folded away for easy storage. Reception of calls was clear and crisp in our tests with everybody we called saying they could hear us clearly. Plantronics says it’s the noise-cancelling technology included in the headset, but either way it offers superb audio quality.
Connecting the headset to a mobile phone is easy once you follow the instructions and as always, a flashing blue light lets you know what is going on.
The Voyager L510 supports the new Bluetooth V1.2 protocol, which allows multipoint connectivity so users can switch easily between Bluetooth devices such as a mobile phone, PDA and laptop. However be warned, as older Bluetooth-enabled devices like laptops might have difficulty connecting in.
Battery life is a supposed six hours talk time and up to 100 hours stand-by time and in our test we would have to say this is pretty much spot on. The range too is an important factor and we managed to get a good 8-10metres from our phone before we noticed a break-up in reception quality.
Where the headset comes into its own however, is the imminent introduction of an optional dongle that will allow you to connect the headset to a standard landline as well and then give you the ability to switch between your office phone and your mobile.
This version will, however, come with a £150 premium on the price.
Overall, the headset performed very well with a clear reception for both incoming and outgoing voice signals. The only drawback we found was a slight delay in picking up the call as the headset kicked in.
Add into the mix the Office dongle when it comes out later this year and you can see why the Voyager was this year's Best of Innovation Award at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.