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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger
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    Question Seeking Advice on Headphones for Windows SP1 PC/Laptop

    As always, when overwhelmed by tech, come to the Lounge!

    In our small business, I currently listen to videos using just USB earbuds, but would like something more comfortable and, ideally, with a microphone for teleconferences, planned webinars and Skype calls (when I can finally get around to using that program). Going to sites such as NewEgg to research them totally confused me - the choice is staggering.

    Can anyone offer suggestions on the type of product I need? For now, low price is a requirement so am hoping for suggestions on inexpensive sets that will still produce acceptable sound quality.

    I'm happy to provide any other information Loungers might need to offer suggestions.

    Thanks in advance for any help or redirection!

    Linda

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  3. #2
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Linda,

    Quote Originally Posted by IreneLinda View Post
    inexpensive sets that will still produce acceptable sound quality.
    For Who!

    Sound quality is a very subjective thing so offering objective advice is almost impossible. My recommendation would be to hit a Best Buy or similar establishment and try out as many types (buds, over the ear, behind the neck, etc.) until you find a type that feels comfortable. Now try out every different one of that style to find the one that sounds the best to you in your price range. Then shop around for the best price. HTH
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

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  4. #3
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    Hi RG - great practical advice. I see what you mean about sound quality being subjective so checking out various headsets in a bricks and mortar store makes infinite sense. Guess I was looking for a "magic bullet" to shortcut the research, but your reply suggests magic bullets could cause harm!

    Besides, I will be much more confident with the purchase knowing ahead of time that it does the job.

    Thanks, as always, for your quick and helpful response!

    Linda

  5. #4
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Linda,

    You're most welcome.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

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  6. #5
    Lounger lostwages's Avatar
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    My recommendation

    I would like to suggest using a bluetooth headset.

    WIRELESS with a built-in microphone and a rechargeable battery
    and most of the ones I've seen will operate for at least 8 hours on a battery charge.

    Most of them come with a drivers disc and a mini-transmitter/receiver that plugs into a USB port.
    If your computer has built-in native bluetooth support, you probably won't even need to use the USB transmitter/receiver.

    Most of them will also work with bluetooth enabled cell phones, smart phones and ipods.

    Here's an example - on sale for $27.99 at Newegg until Wed, Dec. 11.
    http://www.neweggflash.com/Campaign/757

    I have one similar (of a different brand) and it still performs well after 3 years.
    Edit: Just looked again at mine... It's an "Insignia" (which if I remember correctly, I got at Best Buy).
    Last edited by lostwages; 2013-12-06 at 22:21.
    Happy Computing,

    Rich

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  8. #6
    Star Lounger catilley1092's Avatar
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    lostwages, I would have bought that bluetooth headset, but the 90 day warranty on the white set held me back. No warranty is specified on the black set, even on the Philips website. Just the 30 day return/exchange that's standard for Newegg.

    90 days is a short warranty for this type of purchase, kind of making me wonder if it's a refurb. I once bought a wireless mouse from Newegg Flash, of the Verbatim brand, however it shipped from 1 Sale a Day. Was defective from the start, come to find out it was a refurb, but Newegg Flash didn't state this in their ad. And being it was actually sold by 1 Sale a Day, Newegg didn't back the sale.

    It was advertised as a $40+ model, on promo for $8.99. After returning it at my expense back to Verbatim, another $8 spent & they wanted it packed where it couldn't move in the packaging. The original was shipped to me inside of a box large enough for a small PSU w/no cushioning at all, just the packaged mouse & receipt. I finally have a decent, but not what one would expect for $40, wireless mouse.

    Needless to say, I'm leery of these "Flash" sales, though I'm a regular Newegg customer & have been since 2009.

    Cat
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  9. #7
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Linda,

    I just found this PC World article you may find interesting. HTH
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

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  10. #8
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    Thanks for the further input. Checked out the PC World article, RG - good information and explanations for why certain features are important.

    With all the choice, think my best bet is to head to Best Buy for some hands on testing. As for Bluetooth, this makes me seem like a Luddite, but I've been avoiding it. I think both PC and laptop have it, but I have no idea how to use it. I think all those self important guys walking off airplanes talking into the air with their Bluetooth earphone in place turned me off the whole concept!

    Linda

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    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Linda,

    "Ouch", he says as he gingerly hides his Plantronics headset!

    Bluetooth actually works quite well. I used a BT mouse with my laptop for quite a while until they came out with the mini receivers. BT is some what like Apple equipment...nice but usually more expensive. So unless you REALLY need the wireless aspect or don't have any more USB ports I'd avoid it. It is however very easy to setup. HTH
    Last edited by RetiredGeek; 2013-12-07 at 20:17.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

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  12. #10
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    You know I would never include you, RG, a favorite Lounger, in any snarky comment!!

    Appreciate the comments on Bluetooth and the comparison to Apple products. As you said, the only thing that would make me consider bothering with it is a lack of USB ports. I know I'm getting short as I adopted a wireless mouse a couple of years ago.

    Will post back my ultimate purchase once it's made, which won't be immediately. Who knows, maybe Santa will be hovering around Best Buy as I look things over!

    Linda

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    Star Lounger catilley1092's Avatar
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    Glad IreneLinda created this topic! Have been considering a headset myself for my Dell, but had forgotten about the Bluetooth option, actually have it disabled at Startup because I'm not using it. Have since added a wireless keyboard/mouse, as I can't stand wires all over the place. With 2 monitors on my PC desk (one of which is an HP AIO PC), 2 notebooks, plus the Dell underneath, all but one connected by Ethernet for security, I don't need anymore wires.

    May as well make use of what I have in that Bluetooth connection, plus I won't be bounded by a cable, meaning that I could walk to the fridge to grab a soda & not miss anything.

    lostwages, thanks for reminding me of what I have! Otherwise that disabled Bluetooth connection would have been totally forgotten (as stated above, actually already was).

    I'll likely find on on promo somewhere, still possibly Newegg, with a better warranty.

    Cat
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    I'm impressed that Cat is going to tackle Bluetooth. Maybe it's time I checked it out, too.

    Linda

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  16. #13
    Silver Lounger mrjimphelps's Avatar
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    Linda:

    Here's what I recommend for phone calls:

    I personally don't like bluetooth for a headset; I prefer a wired headset, because the sound quality is better. Wired is also really simple -- you plug it in, and it works. You unplug it, and it stops working. No need to go through any complicated procedures, and no need to worry if your battery has enough charge in it.

    A headset which I have found to have very good sound quality (both the mic and the earphone) (and also very inexpensive) is the Panasonic KX-TCA60. It also is comfortable to wear.

    You can buy it at walmart.com for around $10, with free site-to-store shipping.

    You can't beat the price; and if there is any problem, you can return it to your local Wal Mart very easily.

    Out of the box, it plugs into the old-style cordless phones and cell phones, not the new cell phones (nor directly into a computer). It seems that all of the new cell phones are using the iPhone type of connection.

    Here is an adapter which will allow you to use this headset with an iPhone, a Blackberry, or a new-style cell phone:

    http://www.qwertygadgets.com/BlackBe...-15306-002.htm
    (It adapts the 2.5mm plug of the headset so that it can plug into the iPhone-style 3.5mm headset jack.)

    I'm not sure how you will plug this headset into the computer for Skype; but if you can use Skype from your iPhone, you can plug the headset into your iPhone and make phone calls that way. Same for other services which will work from your iPhone (many will).

    Jim
    Last edited by mrjimphelps; 2013-12-12 at 15:19. Reason: I never get it right the first time!

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  18. #14
    Silver Lounger mrjimphelps's Avatar
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    Linda:

    Here is a website where I believe you will find lots of helpful information:

    http://www.virtualassistantforums.com

    They have lots of very helpful information on every conceivable topic related to operating a small business.

    For phone-type questions, you will be able to read the actual experiences of lots of people who have actually used the various phone technologies. Same for anything else related to operating a small business.

    As always, come to Windows Secrets with your computer questions!

    Jim

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    Star Lounger catilley1092's Avatar
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    Am still looking for a compatible Bluetooth headset, but have been busy with my newly purchased ASUS VE248Q 24" LED backlight monitor.

    Seems that most that I've looked at more for phone/music players, not PC's. The couple that I did consider, the reviewers mentioned the lack of "real stereo", or defects such as one side not working, a more notable complaint is for larger heads, they don't fit good & are uncomfortable after a short time of use.

    So far, I just haven't yet settled on one. I believe that my assumption may have not been what was expected. Of course I know that non-wired speakers of most any type doesn't give quite the sound quality of wireless, but for $49-$69, I expect more than 3 star (or egg) reviews.

    My sound card is Maxx Waves 7.1, while I can't afford those $200-$300 headphones, there should be some lower priced ones to meet my needs. Like in the $79-$100 range on promo. Sometimes on the Logitech site, there are dented boxes with full warranty, product guaranteed not to be damaged.

    Still haven't totally thrown in the towel on Bluetooth, but it's beginning to look dim for my needs.

    Cat
    My System Specs:

    http://speccy.piriform.com/results/N...gWw3zT1A30RkV3 MSI Notebook (OEM Win 7 Pro x64)

    http://speccy.piriform.com/results/8...3hQlSkXzuDfbKb Dell XPS 8700 w/Windows 8

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