I must go through several bluetooth headsets every year in my quest for the perfect storm of portability, battery longevity and range. At the moment, I’m quite smitten by my Plantronics Voyager Legend. This wasn’t what I expected, mind you, because it isn’t the most svelte-looking unit on the market. However, don’t let it’s kludgy, 50’s hearing-aide style deter you. This is a really good headset with a lot of functionality.
The Legend is surprisingly light, despite the enormous battery pack that you must wear around your ear. That said, I did get some ear-fatigue and soreness inside my ear after wearing it for several hours at a time. But this turned out to be because I had chosen the wrong ear-bud size. By mistake, I went for the largest one, hoping to block the hole of my ear-canal and cancel out more of the ambient sound. This lead to soreness, because the ear-bud ended up taking on the weight of the earpiece, instead of letting my ear, itself, take the weight. Switching to the next size down for my ear-bud solved the problem.
Talk time is supposed to be around 7 hours. I generally got close to 5-6 hours. Perhaps, this is because I like to wander far away from my phone when I’m talking, which taxes the battery. The range on this earpiece is the best I’ve had so far. I don’t know what the line-of-sight range is, but it allowed me to go into other rooms in my house without dropping the connection. I even carried on a conversation while heading down one flight of stairs to check the post without any noticeable distortion.
The Legend comes with some very nice accessories, including a carry-case with built-in rechargeable battery. This holds the earpiece and a bluetooth USB dongle, which you can use to connect your earpiece to a computer. Thoughtfully, the micro-USB cable that’s included to charge this carry-case also comes with a separate attachment that can be used to connect directly to the earpiece and recharge it. Finally, there is a recharging stand that you can dock your earpiece into when not using it.
Here’s what all the kit looks like. You’ll see that I’ve docked my earpiece in the stand. I’m recharging the carry case, too, and you’ll notice the direct earpiece attachment floating but tethered to the cable.
In terms of functionality, the Legend will connect to a computer and your phone at the same time. getting it to connect to the computer is pretty straight-forward. The USB dongle is already paired to your earpiece. When you plug the dongle into your computer, you’ll see the Legend show up in your audio/microphone settings.
When a call comes into your phone, the Legend will speak to you and ask you what to do. If you say ‘answer’ it will answer your call. If the earpiece is lying on a flat surface and you pick it up, it will automatically answer the call. If you get an incoming call on your computer, you need to click on a call pickup button on the earpiece. When you get an incoming call on both your phone and computer at the same time, it will answer your phone if you say ‘answer’ and answer the computer if you press the pickup button. Sometimes, it doesn’t always follow this order, however, and you might need to experiment.
Overall, I’m very happy with the Plantronics Legend. I appreciate its light weight, long battery life and the accessories that come with it. Plus, it’s really great that I can use it on my phone and computer at the same time.