A Great Idea Slightly Unperfected
Comfortable, easy to use, good sound.
Cheap charger, spotty voice quality.
The Bottom Line:
I recommend this unit fully as a wireless heaphone. And partially for taking phone calls due to mixed results with voice quality.
I received my Plantronic 903 headset for Christmas, and have been regularly using it since then. It is a capable little headset that performs well at most functions and just average at others. All in all I believe it to be a quality purchase and generally outdoes the expectations I had for the set.
Straight out of the box, my first impression was, "Why so much bulk?" The packaging was not very sleek and and was much larger than what I expected and as I later found out more than what was needed. Inside you will find the headset, a padded mesh zip up package about the diameter of a softball but much thinner, and a wall charger.
The charger is the first place I saw that left room for improvement. The connection is similar to that of many cell phones and digital cameras, and even worked with my BluCig charger, so finding replacements will not be hard. However, the cable is thin and about 3 times longer than it needs to be. Normally this wouldn't be a problem, but as the only charging device supplied, in order to take it with you in the nice travel case it comes with, it requires you to roll up way too much cord than what it's worth. If you wrap it around the par that plugs into the wall it quickly becomes the largest part of the package, and if you just coil it up the cord wants to spring back out and makes it nearly impossible to pack up.
The case is an unexpected feature that I found to be well crafted and fairly well thought out. Although mesh in appearance, there is a second layer consisting of about 1/4 inch of soft foam that pads and protect the contents inside, although probably not from anything catastrophic. It's more mad for throwing it into a bag or purse. The only really problem I have with this it is that fact that the zipper goes around 270 degrees allowing the unit to open in a way that resembles a clam. Nice when you want to empty fast, but difficult to keep everything in when you are trying to bundle. I have found that leaving the case half zippered allowed you to form a pouch in which you could "stuff" in the items needed.
The headset is pretty much what I expected and great for what I intended it for, which was just a wireless headphone set for listening to music, watching videos, and playing games on my iPad. For all these purposes it performs very well. I am happy with the sound quality overall. It brings a crisp clear tone, and has little to no distortion even at the highest levels. The internal earpieces have an vertical adjustment option that provides a comfortable fit for most sized ears. And the weight of the unit is about what i expected. While wearing them you are certainly aware that you have headphones on, however the passive fit of the unit allows you to wear them for multiple hours and never feel discomfort or fatigue.
The controls are basic and fairly self explanatory. On the left ear you have most of your features. This side contains the power plug as well. Going from high to low you have a volume up, volume down, and power buttons. These same buttons also double as the track forward, track backward, and sync buttons(also from high to low). On the part of the earpiece that faces away from the head at the center of the ear, there is a mute button, that allow for a quick pause from the audio coming from whatever device it is connected to, or allow you to speak without being heard on the other end. The right earpiece contains an answer/hang up button in the some place the mute button would be. The two earpieces are connected by a wire that runs behind your head and sags to the base of where your head and neck meet allowing it to fit most people. It really is a comfortable unit overall that is fairly intuitive after just a day or two.
The main drawback is that I hear a lot of complaints about background noise, epecially wind, or engine noise. For some reason or another , in my car is worse than outside. From my best interpretation, it is said to sound like I have 'humming" or "just noise." It seems to only be in certain environments, because there are many times I can talk for half an hour in my office and no one would know I didn't have a phone to my head.
Syncing the unit was a snap, and the directions are about as clear as they come. I am fairly new to bluetooth technology, and i had it up and working on my phone and iPad in under 15minutes.
Charging will take you about 4 hours for a empty to full charge, and last about 8 hours of constant talk time or 10-12 hours of listening. I usually charge mine about once a week.
One really cool feature is that this unit will work with some smart phones and tablets and will dispay a power bar on the screen to visually see whre the units is charged at, and upon power up the unit will actually tell you how many hours it has before it's out of juice.
All in all I love my Plantronics headset and would recommend it to those looking for a great wireless headphone. If you want the best sounding call quality, I'm not certain you couldn't do better.