Jabra BT 325s Bluetooth Headset

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Product: Jabra BT 325s
Provided By: Jabra
Price: MSRP $89.99

Introduction:

During our visit to CES Jabra was kind enough to supply each of us with a bag full of goodies.  One of the products in the bag was the BT 325s Bluetooth headset.  This is no ordinary headset as it allows you to listen to your favorite music while maintaining a Bluetooth connection.  It's obvious this product is designed for somebody that never leaves home without their cell phone and mp3 player.  As this has been, and still is the growing trend of society today, this might be an excellent solution to bridge the two devices together to provide uninterrupted noise in your ear. 

The Package & Specs:

The packaging is nothing extrodinary as the headset comes in a standard plastic sealed case with the product peaking out the window and the standard Jabra colors and graphics around the edges.  Out of the case you can easily see how the 325s is intended to function with one lead from the Bluetooth unit ending with a 3.5mm mini-jack for plugging into an mp3 player or multitude of other audio devices with a standard headphone output, and the other lead ending with two ear bud headphones. 

The Package


 

Let's take a peak at the specs copied from Jabra's website:

Bluetooth compliance:
Bluetooth version 1.2 specifications

Supported Bluetooth profiles:
Handsfree (default) and Headset Bluetooth profiles

Operating range:
Up to 30 feet

Talk time:
Up to 8h (subject to phone)

Stand-by time:
Up to 240h

Charging time:
Approximately 2 hours

Weight:
Less than 40 grams incl. the original Jabra headphones

Materials:
Primarily thermoplastic polyurethane and polycarbonate plastics

 

Microphone type: 6mm omni-directional

Battery type: Rechargeable lithium polymer.

Pairing passkey or PIN: 0000

Supported special features:
• Pair with up to 8 devices
• Answer calls
• End calls
• Reject calls*
• Voice dialing*
• Last number redialing*
• Call waiting*
• Place call on hold*
• Mute*

* Phone dependent

IP22 (The Jabra BT325s can withstand a short rain shower)

A Closer Look:

The 325s is simple in design and quite easy to use.  The Jabra button in the middle is a multipurpose button that controls most of the Bluetooth functionality including on/off, answer/hangup, and a few other features that are dependent on your phones capabilities such as call back.  You'll also notice the + and - volume buttons above and below the multipurpose button for controlling Bluetooth volume.  Note that these two volume buttons work only with the Bluetooth connection and in my experience controlled the volume on the phone itself.  The lead with the mini-jack end for plugging into audio devices such as mp3's is permanently attached to the bottom of the Bluetooth unit.  However the headphone lead does detach to allow you to hook up your favorite headphones or any other speaker device with a 3.5mm jack.  The charging port is covered by a rubber plug and is right beside the mic hole.

 
Front
 
Back
 
Headphones

The back of the Bluetooth unit sports the spring clip for attaching it wherever it's convenient.  The earbuds are light weight and fit in my ear comfortably.  The entire headset including the Bluetooth unit and headphones weighs less than 40 grams which I find to be very light weight.


 

Testing:

First things first, let's charge it up!  The 325s comes with an A/C wall charger and requires a full 2 hr charge before using.  Battery life will last 240 hours in standby or 8 hours or talk time.  Note that the Bluetooth unit will still pass audio from an audio source if the unit is turned off, or if the battery is dead.  The multifunction button lights up when its plugged in to indicate that it's charging, (red) and when it's done charging, (green) and when it's powered on, (flashes blue). 

Charging
Charging
Charged
Charged
Powered On
Powered On

Without plugging the audio jack into anything, I decided to power on the Bluetooth unit, pair it, and make a few phone calls.  Pairing was painless with Motorola E815 phone and I was making calls in no time.  The first thing I noticed was my first stereo phone call!  The 325s will output the phone call to both earbuds providing stereo sound which is far superior in my experience than listening through one mono earbud.  The difference in call clarity was definitely noticed and would be a great benefit to hearing callers in louder environments.  People I called also commented on how clear I sounded and how minimal the echo was depending on which room I was standing in.  I was able to use the multifunction button to operate all of the functions I wanted to with my phone.  Push once for voice activation, push and hold until a beep is heard for redial last, and of course answer and hang up.  The maximum broadcast distance in the specifications states 33ft, but I was able to hold a conversation with my phone in another room well beyond the 33 foot mark and through several walls. 

Time to plug into some tunes!  I plugged into my mp3 played and fired up a couple songs.  The first thing I noticed was how good the 'highs' sounded and the lack of bass.  Many audiophiles will probably change out these headphones for something with a little more bass kick, but the earbuds provided with their high 'highs' will provide superior call quality.  When I pushed the button to make a call the audio quickly but smoothly faded out and my phone asked me who to call.  After completing the call the audio faded back in.  I really do appreciate the fact that the audio fades in and out the way it does as to not shock the listener with loud audio again after completing a call.  Accepting a call is equally painless.  When the 'incoming call' tone is heard, push the button, the audio fades out, and the call is answered.  Note that the 325s has no functionality to pause the music from the audio device, it can only mute it.  If your mp3 player is currently on your favorite song when a call comes in you'll have to pause that separately.


 

Conclusions:

At first glance I was skeptical of the usefulness of this product, but after trying it I'm impressed by many of its features.  I chose to wear this headset with the Bluetooth unit clipped to my collar with the mic pointing towards my mouth and it was quite comfortable.  The entire package is lightweight and easy to forget you're wearing it.  The 325s also boasts a long battery life and is somewhat water resistant.  With all that's good about this product it can't be without some that are bad.  The earbuds are lightweight and comfortable but lack bass response but can also be replaced with your favorite pair.  It's impossible to unplug the audio lead from the Bluetooth unit should you ever have a desire to use this as just a Bluetooth headset.  When I was unplugged from my mp3 player just making calls I had a dangling wire to deal with.  Why not make it detachable as the headphones are?  Because the 325s has universal connectivity to almost any audio device it's easy to recommend this to anybody who listens to an mp3 player on a regular basis that wants the convenience of being able to make an answer calls on the fly.

Pros:

 

  • Lightweight
  • Excellent mic & call quality
  • Small / Stylish / Portable / Comfortable to wear
  • Long battery life
  • Audio fades in and out

 

Cons:

 

  • Earbuds have weak bass response
  • Can't unplug audio source cord
  • A little on the expensive side

 

Score:

 

BCCHardware.com Rating
Quality:
8/10
Performance:
9/10
Software Pack:
N/A
Stability:
N/A
Features:
8/10
Value:
8/10
Total Score 8.25

 

Thanks goes out to Jabra for providing us with a sample of their kicking sample.  If you have any questions or comments about the Jabra 325s feel free to drop us a line in the forum.