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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.

2015/07/06

Addasound Crystal UC2702 & UC2822

A Little Background

VOIP is here to stay.  And a high number of my projects include a goodly percentage of users who already know and love their headset and have no intention of using a “traditional” telephony handset.  Personally, I feel that handsets have their place; but not anywhere near my laptop.

Handsets aside, you can imagine that the competition for the headset market is a little heated.  Vendors compete; features get better, prices get a little lower, all is good.  Microsoft even maintains a 3PIP (Microsoft-defined 3rd Party Interoperability Program) and has a web site that shows you all the stuff that has been approved for either the “Optimized” or “Certified” or otherwise qualified to wear the Lync/SfB logo.

But there are many other devices, while not on the list, that work just fine with Lync or SfB.  I have in mind a USB headset that I purchased from the local bodega years ago that, to this day, works just peachy-keen with my SfB, Skype, and services such as Ventrilo.

And as the market evolves, new players come on board.  Addasound is one of these new players. Addasound comes out of Denmark and has burgeoning line of headsets that work just fine with Skype for Business.  What we are here for today is to take a look at two of these headsets and get a little feel for their quality, comfort, and suitability with SfB.

One of the Addasound selling points is that they have a full line to connect to just about whatever your connection is, or will be.  Conceivably you could buy an Addasound headset (provided you choose the right one) and convert it at a later date to a different type of connector.  Pretty slick.   A little search of a popular website showed a plethora of options.

Crystal UC2702

Addasound says that “…Crystal 2702 Headsets specially designed for cost-effective call center users. Guaranteed comfort, simultaneously providing excellent noise-cancellation and great call quality to users.”  Here is the official blurb.

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  • Noise cancelling microphone blocks 80% background noise and highlights your voice.
  • Easily compatible with different telephone and PC via varieties of QD cords.
  • Maximum volume control protects your hearing under intensive usage.
  • Ultra lightweight design for all-day comfort.
  • Adjustable headband to be most suitable for your wearing.

Ok.  They are right comfortable. Lightweight. Noise cancellation was excellent also. Audio quality, to my un-metered ear, was very nice.

SfB

Controls worked as expected, Volume up/down, mute, end call, A very basic set of controls. Oddly, the headset shows up this way in SfB and Device Manager:

imageimage

General Impression

As opposed to General Patton – build quality seems to be on par with the market.  That is to say, I found nothing wrong with connections, materials, button pushing, or cables.  Everything seems to be as good as anyone else.  For my gourd, this unit is more comfortable than others I have tried.

I plugged into an available USB port, my Windows 8.1 discovered and installed, and SfB started using the new device.  Can’t ask for more than that!  On a minor odd note, SfB calls, when using this headset, did not mute, or reduce the volume of other streams.  This could be just my setup though.

Crystal UC2822

Quoting the Addasound website:  “…ADDASOUND always keeps pace with the developments of the call center industry in order to provide headsets that meet the special requirements of professional users. With its strong R&D background, ADDASOUND made Crystal 2822 an ergonomic noice cancelling headset especially for call centers and noisy working environments. “

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  • Advanced evaporation technology to display textured appearance
  • 180° horizontal adjustable ear cap and 270°-300° bendable boom to fit custom need of every user
  • Ergonomic design for an extremely comfortable wearing experience
  • Ultra lightweight design allows all-day wearing

This headset showed up in Device Manager much the same way that the 2702’s did.  Based on reading this, the 2822 model is more adjustable and does wide-band audio processing. And due to the adjustable ear cups, the 2822 was markedly more comfortable than the 2702 model.

And to save space, the comments made above regarding the 2702 can be applied to the 2822 as well.  Nice, solid, comfortable headsets. If I had to choose, I would pick the 2822 as it fit my aural device holder better than the 2702.

The only question I have after comparing the two models is the 2822 is touted as having “Classic Nordic Design” – please, someone explain to me what that is.

YMMV

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