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TsooRad is a blog for John Weber. John is a Skype for Business MVP (2015-2018) - before that, a Lync Server MVP (2010-2014). My day job is titled "Technical Lead, MS UC" - I work with an awesome group of people at CDW, LLC. I’ve been at this gig in one fashion or another since 1988 - starting with desktops (remember Z-248’s?) and now I am in Portland, Oregon. I focus on collaboration and infrastructure. This means Exchange of all flavors, Skype, LCS/OCS/Lync, Windows, business process, and learning new stuff. I have a variety of interests - some of which may rear their ugly head in this forum. I have a variety of certifications dating back to Novell CNE and working up through the Microsoft MCP stack to MCITP multiple times. FWIW, I am on my third career - ex-USMC, retired US Army. I have a fancy MBA. One of these days, I intend to start teaching. The opinions expressed on this blog are mine and mine alone.

2014/09/26

Jabra Goodness

Let’s face it.  The reason there are so many headsets on the market is because everyone’s head is different.  Personally, I like a nice stereo (Binaural to be technically correct) headset that is DECT.  Wireless to the base, USB to the workstation.  Great range.  For those long conference calls this technology can only be beat by not calling in.  I can get up and walk around, get coffee, and get tasks done while monitoring the call.  Using wide-band, my DECT has at least 200 feet of test range.  So, based on this foreknowledge, I played with a few Jabra headsets lately.  Remember that my existing DECT is the gold standard.

Jabra BIZ 2300 USB Duo

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Such a title for a simple headset that has great audio quality, excellent comfort, and zero effort plug n pray.  I think the VOLUME was a bit lacking, but cranking up the sound card fixed that.  Adjustable boom mike.  What appears to be pretty good sound canceling.  Folds flat for storage.  Optimized for Lync.  Nice set of workable controls on the inline cord module. Here is the market speak straight from Jabra.

I chose this item for test because it hits right where I work.  As a 50% travel, I live with Lync as my communications center.  On the road, you need some tough stuff; it is going to take a beating.  Take a look at that market-speak, I have to agree with all of it.

Lync

  Oh yes.  Well, I got nothing.  I plugged it in, and it worked.  Perfect. You could not ask for more.  You can get one right here.

Adelante.

Jabra Pro 9465 Duo

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Oh Wow.  Here is the market-speak.  I will repeat.  Oh wow.  What a great piece of gear.  Just running through the setup makes you appreciate what went into this great unit.  Right at the moment, the 9465 is playing headset to one of my lab common area phones, doing BT to my iPhone, and is also connected to my lab laptop as the preferred Lync headset.  All at the same time, all seamlessly, all at the same time.  WITH NO READING ON MY PART.  The dedicated reader will know my aversion to reading device documentation (the precept being that the average user will not read the documentation either). From hooking this unit to power, it presented, in color, a walk-through for setup that was PERFECT, and I hooked it to three different devices.  The 9465 even has a “phone home” feature that configures the sound on the base unit based on the deployed environment.  So nice.

The Jabra marketing professionals came up with this:

The PRO 9465 Duo offers the ultimate in connectivity. Specifically designed for executives, managers and other professionals, this headset enables employees to connect with their mobile, desk and softphone, simultaneously. The microphone features advanced noise canceling technology, enabling clear, understandable conversations for your employees and customers.

While I usually decry marketing types as overblown hyperbole (is that redundant?  can you have overblown exaggeration), in this case, I quoted it so that you can see what I don’t want to take the time typing.  And I agree with the content and intent.  ‘Nuff said. 

Lync

Seamless.  Plugged it in and it worked.  What a great piece of gear. I like it, I like it, I like it. You can get one right here.

Jabra Pro 930

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Here is the market-speak.  According to Jabra, the Pro 930 is “…Designed for PC based telephony and Unified Communications systems…A professional, wireless headset optimized for Microsoft OC and Lync.”

DECT, with great range.  Excellent audio quality.  I tried this one because it comes with the ear-hook-thingy that gets rid of the headache-making single ear head band.  Ouch, I hate those.  I hate them even more than I hate one-ear setups.  But, being the even-handed type that I am, I figured I would at least try it before I dissed it.

Following the assembly instructions proved to be my only out for assembly – I failed at figuring it out.  Admittedly, I did not try to hard; maybe a few minutes before I decided that it had to be a press-fit, and then I read the documentation before I broke something.

As a personal note, I did not like the one ear angle of dangle when I had it up and running and actually using it.  It just did not feel “right.”  I tried doing the wiggle and reposition techniques, but in the end, I never got comfortable with being only on one ear.

Lync

Hooked right up and started working.  What more could you ask for?

Summary

All three of these Jabra units are solid, top-of-the-pack choices.  You could do a lot worse.  Solid design, high quality build, great feel, excellent performance.  Jabra even has some spiffy software you can download to keep things easily configured and the base unit firmware updated.

YMMV.

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