I’m a big fan of podcasts and audiobooks, and I’m always looking to get a better pair of Bluetooth headsets. Wires are, well, so obsolete even though wired headphones usually come with a phone and are much cheaper. Still some of us don’t mind spending more to have a better sound and that additional bit of freedom wireless technology provides.
So I was looking for a new Bluetooth headset to try out and luckily Jabra was kind enough to send me the HALO2 for a review. Right from the bat, one can tell it’s an awesome device, which not only looks good but also delivers on the “great sound” promise…
The Jabra HALO2 doesn’t look like any other Bluetooth headset. Its slick lines make it look expensive, like it costs couple of hundreds of dollars rather than less than a hundred. The HALO2 isn’t compact but it’s well designed to appeal both to average users and pros. It has a huge ear cups and it’s mostly coated in black, with a just a bit of silver around the edges; the result is one sexy lookin’ device.
Where are the buttons?
There’s only one physical button which works differently based on what you’re currently doing. By pressing it you’ll either answer the call, pause or resume the song. Volume keys are touch-sensitive and work by sliding the surface up or down. At first this was kinda annoying until I got used to the idea. Now I love it!
Turning off the HALO2 is my favorite part – simply fold it and that’s it. The folded HALO2 is more compact, hence easier to carry around.
It’s also a wired headset
You can either connect to the Jabra HALO2 via Bluetooth or using a 3.5mm headset jack. Needless to say I use Bluetooth exclusively, but I’m sure some folks will appreciate the feature. Moreover, I’m sure this is a cost-cutting thing for Jabra – to offer a single headset instead of two separate ones, while targeting both folks with Bluetooth-enabled phones and those with classic media players.
The surfaces that are in contact with your ears and top of the head are padded for comfort and I like that part a lot. You can easily be using the headset for hours without noticing. But… it can get dirty quickly. I’m a pretty clean guy; however, the material used for padding is quite a dust magnet and is pretty tricky to clean. Not sure whether this could’ve been changed with some other material, but I guess something’s gotta give.
When it comes to headband design, it can be extended easily to fit pretty much any head size.
What about the sound quality?
In a word – awesome. I’m not a big audiophile but I can tell the difference between the HALO2 and any other Bluetooth headset I’ve tried thus far. The sound is crisp and clear, and the advertised “Power Bass” and “Virtual Surround Sound 2.0″ deliver the goods. You will, however, hear your surroundings while using the HALO2 which is actually a plus when using the headset outside of your home. Some of you/us are using Bluetooth headsets when driving and we need to hear what’s happening around.
Additionally, the headset also comes with the Noise Blackout technology with dual microphones to ensure great calling experience.
What else should you know?
The HALO2 comes with a huge battery that will keep it live for up to 8 hours in the music playback mode and 13 days in standby mode. Moreover, it can connect to two phones at once, which is especially neat for folks with one business and one personal handset.
I love the Jabra HALO2. It’s by far the best Bluetooth headset I’ve ever tried and yes I’m going to continue using it. It’s comfortable and provides excellent sound quality both when listening to the music (or audiobooks/podcasts) and when calling. What’s more, the HALO2 is not that expensive any more (compared to its launch price of almost $150) – as I’m writing this, Amazon is selling it for $73.42!