In this review I’ll look at the Plantonics Backbeat 903+ bluetooth stereo headset. They’re a wireless stereo headset that can be used as audio equipment or as a stereo bluetooth headset for your mobile phone.
I was desperate for a wireless headset for general use. I’d pulled the headphones off my head and swept glasses to the floor with my headphone cable too many times. Problem was, there were no real candidates on the market. All I could find were either great big headphones for watching TV or mega-expensive jobbies for audiophiles.
I wanted something with good sound but preferably around the $100 mark. Enter the Plantronics Backbeact 903+. It is a stereo Bluetooth headset from Plantronics, a company I already knew and trusted. My cell phone earpiece is a Plantonics and it’s been clear and reliable for years now.
The beauty of the Backbeat 903+ is that it fill multiple niches for me. Not only is it a stereo headphone but it is also a headset that connects to my cell phone. The disadvantage here is that it connects only to Bluetooth enabled devices, so my old and much loved Samsung MP3 player isn’t getting a guernsey.
It’s immediate apparent when you put these fellas on your ears that they’re a sophisticated piece of audio equipment. Sounds are rich and clear and the bass is good and deep. What only becomes apparent later on is that the fit of the headphones is important for good sound. I can’t quite seem to get the left headphones ear-piece to fit right into my ear so some of the bass is lost.
With the headphones properly fitted the Backbeat 903s block a great deal of ambient sound. They tend to pop out of my ears however and I get a fair bit of ambient sound through. This has it’s advantages (in a silver cloud kinda way) as I’m able to wear them while driving and not feel closed off from the rest of the driving world.
As a Bluetooth Headset
Comfort is fine with these guys so you’re ok to pop them on your head and forget about them. I love having voice conversations with people talking into both my ears so I tend to drive with these guys on my head. Clarity is much better than with a single ear headset. The little electronic lady in my GPS is much easier to understand with the stereo headset.
Battery life is very good. When you turn them on the voice inside the headset tells you how much talk time you have left. It’s over 7 hours on a full charge and the reports you get are pretty accurate. Charge times are ridiculously fast. I’m not sure how long I charge these for but often a quick fifteen minute top up is enough to get me through a talkative day.
Range is decent, on par with standard Bluetooth accessories, about 10m. You can just about go into the next room without losing connection but don’t expect to head to the other end of the house without losing connection.
Here are the specs cut-and-pasted:
- Talk Time Up to 7 hours from one charge
- Standby Time Up to 7 days from one charge
- Weight 34g
- Bluetooth Version 2.1 + EDR (Enhanced Data Rate) and supports the following profiles:
- A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile)
- AVRCP (Audio/Video Remote Control Profile)
- SSP (Secure Simple Pairing)
- HSP (Headset Profile)
- HFP (Hands-free Profile)
- Noise Canceling Dual-mic AudioIQ digital signal processing (DSP) and occluded earbuds
- Speaker 14mm speakers with enhanced bass
- Input Sensitivity – 91dB SPL/V @ 1 kHz
- 10 dB/V to Bluetooth adaptor
- Impedance: 17 Ohms
- Frequency Response 80 Hz–12 kHz (-10dB)
- Battery – Rechargeable Lithium Ion polymer
- 1 hr minimum charge before first use
- 3 hrs to fully charge
- Charge at room temperatures