Great little headset
6 August, 2012
I bought this headset only based on reviews on Amazon and CNet, and I am highly satisfied. I've previously been through two Jabras and one Motorola S9, but none of them stuck. The Motorola has been good on my side of the conversation, but the caller on the other end heard a lot of noise. One of the Jabras didn't fit my ear (I have a big outer ear but a small earhole), and the other was mediocre, and battery died out after lying unused for a while.
I wanted a headset that offered solid noise removal and a good fit, and the Era scores on both counts (not perfect on fit, more about that later).
Noise removal is great, I have worn it on the motorbike, while using a vaccum cleaner, walking down the road in Bangalore traffic.. and I've never had anyone ask me to repeat myself. While the other party does hear background sounds, it stays in the background, and my voice is always crystal clear. You need to make sure that the sensor is touching your cheek -- try out all the provided earbuds to achieve this.
Battery life is good at 5 hours, and there is a voice that can be set up to announce battery life in your ear. Pretty cool.
Build is above average, but not superb, I have to see how it stands up to daily use over time. It feels a bit plasticky, but we all know how appearances can be deceptive (the Motorola S9 felt rugged, but one ear stopped working).
Software, hardware and interaction design is phenomenal. Very satisfying to use - the tap-tap gesture, on-off switch, etc are great touches. There is no volume control on the set, it automagically adjusts volume according to ambient noise, and it does a great job.
I like the look too - understated and elegant. Not one of those huge things sticking out of your ear and flashing multi-coloured LEDs.
The fit is NOT perfect for me, but I can live with it. Sometimes, I adjust it when it feels like it's slipping out. It is very comfortable, though. I will try to get my hands on Jabra Eargels, I have read that they provide a better fit for some people.
The software is not perfect - the Talk button stopped working once, and it disconnected from my Galaxy SL a couple of times. A restart of my headset fixed the former, and turning BT off and on again on the phone fixed the latter, so no biggie. Once, the bluetooth connection between my phone and the headset started crackling. I restarted the phone, and it was fine. I'm not sure if the problem was with the phone or the headset, but it isn't a recurring problem, so no worries.
So one star down on those two counts. If it had been a flawless fit for me, I would have still given the Era a full 5 stars. But understandable that it doesn't, since I have had fit problems with a lot of headsets and earphones - the Jawbone is actually above par.
To summarize, this is a great product that does all it claims to. It is designed and engineered thoughtfully - it never gets in your way. It's one of those things that you don't just like, you actually develop an attachment to it. It may be a bit pricey, but it delivers.
PS: Junglee, allow line breaks in reviews!
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