Bluetooth headsets on a whole have gotten a lot better looking, but if there is a model worthy of the runway, it's the Plantronics Discovery 925. The fashion-conscious headset geared toward women is not only sleeker than average, but its comfortable and lightweight design makes it a pleasure to wear all day. While its sound quality isn't sacrificed for beauty, you might want to think twice if you plan on using it in extremely loud environments.
Plantronics Discovery 925 Runway Design
At first glance, the Discovery 925 looks nothing like a headset and could be mistaken for a jewelry pendant. In a completely new design, the 925 has a diamond-shaped ear piece and a narrow V-frame microphone boom. Measuring 2.7 x 1.0 x 0.9 inches and weighing a less than half an ounce, our black and silver unit felt extremely light in our hands and on our ear.
The 925's availability in 12 different colors, including Peach and Pear, make it even more couture. In fact, Plantronics prefers the Discovery 925 be called an earpiece rather than a headset.
The unit's black face doubles as a multifunction button, which can be used for pairing, call controls, and voice dialing. A gel earpiece with a small flap of extra rubber--what Plantronics calls a stabilizer tail--on the spine fits into either ear. It's one of the easiest headsets to put on in a rush, and it stayed firmly in our ear on a long walk. Wearing the headset for three hours didn't cause any aches or discomfort.
The top of the device holds a single button volume control, which is also used to activate the online indicator. Instead of having a volume rocker, the one button has three volume settings, and each tap increases the volume. While having only two buttons maintains the headset's minimalist aesthetic, it's somewhat impractical; remembering how many times to press the multifunction button for certain commands is annoying. A micro-USB port is located on the right side of the headset for charging.
Discovery 925 Performance
Pairing the Discovery 925 with a BlackBerry 8830 was easy; Plantronics' QuickPair technology puts the headset into pairing mode instantly when it's turned on. Indoors, calls sounded extremely clear and were devoid of echo both to us and our caller. When walking around New York City on a brisk winter evening, we could hear voices clearly, though occasionally our caller complained of wind noise. The placement of the microphone against our face and closer to our mouth was comfortable and blocked the street noise as we were walking. The AudioIQ technology used by Plantronics did a good job of blocking out background noise in most situations. We had to move to a quieter area in a crowded bar to hear voicemail, and when a fire engine with blaring sirens passed us on the street, our callers couldn't hear our clipped words. But those situations are enough to bring just about any headset to its knees.
The range on the Discovery 925 was decent and actually quite close to Plantronics' reported 33 feet. Audio started to crackle at 30 feet, and while staticky at 33 feet, we could still hear our caller's voice. The Discovery 925 supports multipoint technology, which allows two Bluetooth devices to be paired to the headset. We had no problem taking calls from both our BlackBerry 8830 and a BlackBerry Pearl on the device.
Innovative Charging and Solid Battery Life Plantronics' stylish design extends to the 925's black leather charging case, which provides an easy way to charge, store, and protect the headset. Once you have connected the headset to the charging case, you can plug the included AC charger or USB cable into the charging case's mini-USB port. You can also plug the chargers directly into the headset.
After an hour of plugged-in time, the headset was fully charged. During our two days of testing, we got 4.5 hours of talk time, which is just half an hour less than the rated talk time. The rated standby time of 5 days held true in our tests.
Plantronics Discovery 925 Verdict
For the female fashionistas and heavy talkers of the world, the Discovery 925 is heaven-sent. It expertly combines fashion and function with minimal trade-offs.