Within the past year, we have noticed the increased frequency of questions about headsets with active noise cancelling. Many customers are familiar with the consumer brands out there that offer Active Noise Cancelling in headphones used for music and other media and are now asking us, “But what about for office headsets?” The pervasive noisy open office environment, as well as the continuing needs of mobile workers handling important calls on the go, provokes the question. Active noise cancelling technology (ANC) will reduce unwanted noise and eliminate distractions.
From the headset brands that we carry, there are several choices that, depending upon the connection type, may provide the ANC you need.
1. The Jabra Evolve 75 UC is our top pick for a wireless Bluetooth ANC headset. The large leatherette ear cushions are comfortable and perfect for all-day wear. The speakers rotate to lay flat in the hard-sided case (click here to see the case) that the headset comes in. The noise-cancelling microphone boom arm can be clipped to the headband when you’re not on calls – a magnet secures the boom arm until you’re ready to use it again. Integrated Busylights in the ear cups alert co-workers to your availability – at a glance. ANC is easy to turn on and off with the touch of a button on the left ear cup. The Listen-In feature allows you to keep ANC turned on – yet tuning into the conversation surrounding you – with a simple tap on the left ear cup. There are two certified versions of the Evolve 75: UC and Certified for Skype for Business. The included Link 370 dongle allows you to walk up to 100 feet away from the PC it’s connected to. Talk time is approximately 15 hours. There is an Evolve 75 UC version with the charging stand, which we recommend for those who primarily work at a desk. The stand is a great place to store and charge the headset when not in use. MSRP is $279.00 ($329.00 for the headset and stand).
2. The Plantronics Voyager 8200 UC is the newest ANC wireless headset, and has a contemporary boomless mic design: dual-paired omnidirectional mics with enhanced Digital Signal Processing. These technologies ensure your voice is picked up and background noise is not the focus of the conversation. Dual mode ANC lets you choose preferred noise-reduction level. Smart sensors allow you to answer calls by simply putting on the headset and automatically mute your calls or pause music by taking the headset off. It offers an almost-unbelievable 20 hours of talk time. A carrying pouch is included. The Voyager 8200 UC is available in two colors: Black and White and MSRP is $379.95.
3. Plantronics Voyager Focus UC is the first wireless headset offering ANC. The Focus UC is compatible with smartphones, tablets, smart watches, and PCs via Bluetooth. It offers up to 12 hours of talk time (10 with ANC on). This is another intelligent headset: Smart sensors answer calls by simply putting on the headset, mute by taking the headset off and pause/resume music. First-to-market Dynamic Mute Alert feature senses and alerts users when they are trying to talk when muted. The sleek noise-cancelling mic can be worn on either side of the head by rotating the boom arm. A carrying pouch is also included with this headset; MSRP is $279.95 or 299.95 for the version with the charging stand.
4. Sennheiser’s MB 660 UC MS has innovative NoiseGard hybrid adaptive ANC that constantly monitors your background environment for noise, thus adjusting the level of noise reduction in the headset seamlessly. Advanced own-voice detector provides optimal speech intelligibility while reducing background noise. SpeakFocus technology, along with the 3 digital microphones, enhances voice clarity in all sound environments. The listening experience can be personalized with the various sound effect modes: Club, Movie, Speech, or Director. The MB 660 UC MS comes in a hard-sided case for travel convenience. This headset is certified for Microsoft Skype for Business and optimized for UC platforms. MSRP is $399.00.
5. Wireless around-the-neck earbud wearing styles are the newest addition to the professional office headset market. The Jabra Evolve 75e has an integrated Busylight and magnetic earbuds that connect to pause your music, or end your call. The neckband is silicon rubber and is sweat and water resistant, however, make no mistake: this business headset is made for work. The three-microphone technology provides crystal-clear calls and creates a unique "talk-zone," making sure you’re heard, while nearby voices are filtered out. ANC is activated by pressing a button on the neckband; to "listen in" to your environment, simply press and hold the same button. The headset comes with a USB dongle, zippered hard-sided travel case, three eartip and three pairs of both EarGels and EarWings, and includes a desktop charging stand. MSRP is $259.00.
6. The Plantronics Voyager 6200 UC headset features Plantronics clear talk technology, four omnidirectional mics and enhanced
noise cancelling, optimizing your voice and minimizing background noise. ANC can be turned on and off with the flip of a switch. Connect to PC with the included BT600 dongle. Also included: a hard-sided, zippered travel case, desktop charging stand, and 3 sizes of eartips for maximum comfort and customization. The Voyager 6200 UC is offered in two colors: Black and Sand. MSRP is $299.95.
For both of these neckband earbud headsets, the neckband will vibrate when there is an incoming call, so you won't need to keep the earbuds in your ears at all times.
7. Plantronics Blackwire 725 All-day users of PC softphones will like this headset. This is a corded, all-in-one USB headset with large leatherette ear cushions that rest on the ear. It also features a leatherette padded headband for added comfort. The microphone is noise-cancelling and has a flexible boom arm that can be bent to personalize the fit. The in-line call controller has a built-in clothing clip, soft touch answer/end and mute buttons, a rocker-style button for volume, and on the side of the controller, the ANC on/off switch. Slide the switch toward ANC to activate. Smart sensor technology allows you to answer a call by putting the headset on your head. A zippered neoprene travel pouch protects the headset from damage – either while traveling, or even in the office environment. MSRP for the Blackwire 725 is $179.99.
8. Blackwire 7225 features Active Noise Canceling and a boomless mic design, in a corded headset. A new twist: the headset controls are all located on the ear speakers, similar to a wireless headset. Video calls are common in work places today, and a resounding demand was for a headset without a mic boom. The technology found in the microphone design is impressive: its 4 mic design detects noise from all directions and separates noise from the speaker's voice. Digital Signal Processing (DSP) delivers a natural voice sound. USB-A and USB-C models are available in both color choices: Black and White. MSRP is $199.95 for all variants.
Download Plantronics Hub software to gain call control across multiple softphones. A headset control panel allows for customizing settings, including call notification.
9. Sennheiser offers the Century SC 660 ANC USB, which adds Active Noise Canceling into the Century 660 series of premium USB headsets. ANC is easily activated with the sliding switch located on the side of the in-line call controller. An ultra noise-canceling microphone ensures that your caller will hear only you &emdash; and not your background environment. Proximity Sensor Technology allows for answering, pausing, and resuming calls by simply taking the headset on and off.
The SC 660 series has a solid feel, and a luxury fit, for comfortable all-day wear, and is both Microsoft-certified and optimized for UC applications. If you need to travel with your headset (or work in another location) the ear cushions rotate to lay flat for travel in the included carry pouch. The magnetic holder is a great feature, too: attach the magnet to your desk, where the call control unit will rest; the magnet on the unit will hold the call controller in place. Sennheiser offers its standard three-year warranty for this headset. MSRP is $249.00.
USB and 3.5mm Connection
10. Jabra Evolve 80 This corded headset is compatible with devices that have a 3.5mm port and PCs via USB. Oversized ear cup style cushions completely surround the ear and hug the user’s head. It is the heaviest of the 3 choices, weighing in at 11.43 ounces – almost ¾ of a pound. The bulkiness of the headset could prove to be a deal breaker for some users; however, customers who own this headset don’t mind the heft and comment on its incredible ability to block ambient noise. There is a comfort feature to the headset: the headband has a soft rubber cushion that allows it to lightly rest on the head.
Activate ANC at the bottom of the right ear cup. A nice feature of the Evolve 80 is the “Listen In” button: when you have ANC activated, but need to “listen in” to your environment, press the button in the middle of the right ear speaker, to temporarily disable the ANC. Press the button again to resume ANC. The rechargeable battery is charged when the Evolve 80 is connected via USB port.
Other features: a neoprene zippered pouch for travel (the ear cushions rotate to lay flat) and a noise-cancelling microphone that mutes automatically when the mic boom is docked in the headband. MSRP: $329.00.
Hi-fi stereo sound and wideband audio for listening to music and multimedia applications contribute to the luxury feel of all of these headsets.
ANC Headsets for Desk Phones
11. The very first (and so far, only) DECT wireless headset with Active Noise Canceling is the Plantronics Savi 8220. This headset connects to desk phones, PCs and mobile phones. Conference two of your three devices to collaborate with colleagues or connect up to four Savi 8200 Series headsets for training or call resolution. There are 2 versions available: Microsoft Skype for Business certified, and UC. MSRP is $459.95.
At this time, ANC technology is not available in QD (quick disconnect) headset versions. We have tested a solution here at Avcomm that has proven to be successful for our customers, and lets you use an ANC headset (Bluetooth or USB) with a desk phone!
We recommend the Plantronics MDA220 USB, an audio switcher for PCs and desk phones, along with a USB headset of your choice, to connect your ANC headset to a desk phone. Yes, that’s right: an ANC headset CAN be used with your desk phone! And it's important to note that any brand of headset can be used with the MDA220 USB.
Jabra Direct has introduced a new feature that customizes the music equalizer of Evolve headsets. The Evolves, corded and wireless, are great for both personal and work usage.
If you already have Jabra Direct, simply open Jabra Direct on your desktop, click on the Updates tab at the top, and then click on the yellow "Update Now" button. This should only take a few minutes.
If you don't have Jabra Direct installed on your PC yet and you are using an Evolve headset (or other Bluetooth (with dongle) or USB headset or speakerphone from Jabra), do this immediately. Jabra Direct makes sure that your headset always has the latest firmware, guaranteeing you’ll have the most up-to-date features, bug fixes and easy access to compatibility updates. With the user-friendly Direct Dashboard, staying current has never been easier. And, it's FREE.
We are moving to a work-from-home situation across the world. For those who haven't set up a home office yet, here are our suggestions for a productive space to work during this modern-day pandemic.
The best option for home work is to close yourself off in a dedicated office space, or a quiet out-of-the-way bedroom. If you have younger children who need you near, you may be working in the middle of the family at the kitchen table. In either situation, a headset with a noise-canceling microphone is a must! We offer headsets with both noise-canceling and ultra noise-canceling microphones, for extreme noise cancellation.
We recommend an Active Noise Canceling headset for complete concentration, and with a variety of wearing styles and connection types, there's guaranteed to be a headset that works for you. The Jabra Evolve 80, pictured above, is a USB and 3.5mm headset with large ear cushions that completely surround the ear; and with ANC, and Busylights on the ear cups, it's a great choice for productive working and clear calls.
Other work at home tips:
•Don't sit in the same place all day. Get up and move! Wireless headsets let you walk and talk. •Take a lunch break ... but don't extend it to all-day grazing. No need to gain weight in your comfies while you enjoy unlimited snacks from the pantry. •Speaking of comfies, you may find that you accomplish more when you're not wearing pajamas or sweats. That's something you'll have to test for yourself. •Take breaks ... but not too many. Turn off notifications for any non-essential tasks (such as social media) so you can focus on what needs to be done.
•When it's time to take a break, walk around outside for a few minutes. Get a change of scenery and clear your thoughts.
•Take advantage of collaboration tools and communicate with your co-workers regularly. A quick conversation can go a long way to building relationship, and don't forget to have team meetings to keep everyone connected and informed.
Take heart! This quarantine cannot last forever, and may provide you the time necessary for personal reflection and family connection that we typically don't get in our usual daily lives. And, once we get the "all-clear" to return to our work spaces, we go with the knowledge that we can conquer anything! (And now have a GREAT headset to work with!)
Call or Chat us now for recommendations! We are your Headset Experts.
Plantronics has announced the Savi 710, 720, 730, 740 and 745 wireless headsets are being withdrawn from production and will only be available until supplies last.
The recommended replacements are the new Plantronics Savi 8200 DECT wireless headsets. Similar to the Savi 700s, the Savi 8200s offer triple connection to desk phone, PC and mobile phone. Some great features of the Savi 8200 series are the large leatherette ear cushions, comfort padded headband, and the Savi 8220 has Active Noise Canceling. Savi 8200 headsets offer up to 13 hours of talk time on a single charge. You can roam up to 590 feet (environment-dependent) from your PC for maximum freedom. And, convenient voice prompts notify you of mute status, roaming range limits and more.
The new Yamaha YVC-330 USB conference phone with innovative SoundCap technology converts the audio of open spaces into a clear and natural signal that is almost as good as being in a quiet meeting room. Essentially, it's like meeting inside a "bubble," in an open office environment.
Three technologies together become SoundCap:
•Far Field Noise Reduction (FFNR): reduces & removes distracting noises that come from sound sources outside of the meeting area (their graphic showed a “bubble” over a conference table and they call it the “bubble effect” because FFNR reduces every sound that comes from outside the meeting bubble)
•Self-silence: This is basically Auto-Mute. It utilizes Human Voice Activity Detection (HVAD) technology to mute mics automatically when meeting participants aren’t speaking
•Self-volume balancer: Automatically adjusts speaker volume properly to fit surrounding ambient noise levels
SoundCap can be turned off if you would like to daisy chain 2 Yamaha YVC-330s together (with cables), or if you would like to use it in a larger space. With SoundCap on, recommended coverage area is up to 3.3 feet; with SoundCap off, it is suitable for 4.9 feet, up to 9.8 feet. MSRP for the YVC-330 is $349.00.
Not sure if this is the right unit for your environment? Contact one of our team members today at 1-866-998-9991, or Chat us now!