In its continual effort to advance technologically progressive headsets, Plantronics has announced that the SupraPlus series will be phased out in 2019. SupraPlus headsets will be for sale as long as stock is available.
Recommended Replacement: EncorePro 500 Series
Plantronics suggests the EncorePro 500 series as the direct replacement.
The EncorePro series has continued in popularity, with Quick Disconnect, Digital and USB variants that meet the requirements of contact centers and offices around the world.
The EncorePro headband has 6 degrees of adjustment and a super soft foam ear cushion that covers the ear. Premium leatherette ear cushions are available as an optional accessory.
The EncorePro is the benchmark in headset design, winning an iF Design Award in 2015. The single piece, unibody style microphone boom with tactile and visual positioning is virtually break-free. The aircraft grade structural aluminum joints provide another point of strength.
The Plantronics EncorePro 510 is the next generation of our most popular over-the-head monaural headset. Completely re-imagined for the demands of the modern customer service center and office, the HW510 has soft ear cushions for all-day wearing comfort, metal joints that deliver durability and reliability and a flexible mic with visual and tactile positioning guides for precise positioning and clearer conversations.
The Plantronics EncorePro 520 is the binaural version of the all-new 510 design, covering both ears to provide greater focus and concentration by blocking background noise. The 520 also has soft ear cushions for all-day wearing comfort, metal joints that deliver durability and reliability, and a flexible mic with visual and tactile positioning guides for precise positioning and clearer conversations.
Plantronics is offering a new promotion! Upgrade Like A Pro: For a limited time, customers who buy new EncorePro headsets will become eligible to trade up an equal number of SupraPlus headsets to receive a $15 trade up allowance for each headset. This promotion ends March 31, 2018, and claims must be submitted before April 30, 2019. Claims can be submitted on the Plantronics web site: Upgrade Like a Pro
A guest post by Mike Dershowitz, the CEO of Rethink Staffing, a Fair Trade Outsourcing Company, and its sister facility, RTS Philly Outsourcing Center. He believes that when companies focus on their employees’ social and economic progress, it motivates them to perform better at work and produce outperforming results. Contact him at 888-631-0398 or email@example.com for an initial consultation. Read more from Mike on his Medium site.
Original publish date: August 27, 2018
I’ve been living in Berlin, Germany this summer. It has been an incredibly productive time for me and for Rethink Staffing as a whole, including finally building a real sales team that can deliver results.
My favorite breakfast place is two blocks from where we’re renting a flat, called Anna Blume. It was introduced to me by a Berliner friend 3 years ago upon a visit for business, and situated in the old East Berlin neighborhood of Prenzlauer Berg. The coffee is good, and the bauernomelette (think of pickles, potatoes and eggs) is my favorite. When there alone, I find myself quite contemplative.
I go there weekly to write. My favorite table faces west, and right in front of this table on the street there is the most interesting old tree that has been transformed into a potent symbol of the communal and trustworthy nature inherent in German society.
But to me, it’s also a powerful symbol of how persistent, little actions can have such a large impact on people’s lives and the world at large.
This tree has been transformed into a book exchange. Some craftsman took the trunk of it, cut small shelves-cum-compartments into it, covered with plastic fronts to protect the books from the rain, and placed it on the street with a small note of instruction. The compartments contain no locks, there is no record keeping mechanism whatsoever. You can place or take as many books as you like.
I usually sit there any hour and half, eating, writing, and — like a shoddy Balzac — (at least in my mind) drink a few coffees. In that scant hour and a half of that day of the week, I see all manner of people come by, and with a frequency that astonishes. I’m there for just 90 minutes, but I must see 7 or 8 people come by in that time.
That one craftsperson, with this simple idea of a book exchange, has now impacted thousands of lives. Do the math: I’m there for just 90 minutes one day a week; how many weeks, months and years has the tree been delivering thought-provoking texts, giving pleasure to people as they read something fun, or providing much needed distraction to someone that maybe in some form of distress or crisis.
The enormity of the aggregate of instances of influences on those people using the tree, created by that one craftsperson who created it, can probably never be calculated or known. It was this realization that led me to interpret the value of the tree as a potent reminder to my sales people.
Progress is made in the aggregate. No great labor or achievement was accomplished in one isolated action of such instantaneous, conjured power. Rather, the passage of years and thousands of hours of work can be most consistently attributed to great achievement. Ask any professional athlete, superior craftsperson, or writer. It was the result of thousands or a million little actions.
So I remind my sales team (and yours): Progress is made in the aggregate. Every day, you must be laboring to get your message to as many people, through as many small, simple actions as you can muster within the energy that you possess for that day. You must always be meeting new people, reconnecting with old contacts, and telling anyone who will listen why you are doing what you are doing.
For you shall never know what little action you may have done months ago, when interacting with another little action (of yours or another), and how, when those actions combine, may finally be the spark needed to advance your goals. That spark is what results in your prospects finally sending the “let’s catch up” email or “It’s time for us to get serious about this” email. Or even, in this day and age, that rare phone call.
So, I say this to all those salespeople out there who maybe struggling with the day-to-day repetitive nature of sales (and to my sales team): You are that craftsperson. You are creating that tree where you and others come to exchange ideas. Your job is to help your prospects take a little idea from you, one from another, and combine them until those ideas create something of value for your prospect (which hopefully is what you’re selling).
Do that for people you meet, and for potential customers, and you will always be successful. But you must do that every day, and in a thousand small little ways.
Jabra has announced that all variants in the Jabra Pro 9400 series of DECT wireless headsets are at their end of life date, and are no longer being manufactured as of October 2018. The Pro 9400 headsets will be sold for as long as stock is available.
Recommended Replacement: Jabra Engage Series
In its place, Jabra is recommending the Engage DECT wireless headsets. The Jabra Engage 65 and 75 Series includes a range of Stereo, Mono and Convertible models to enable an easy migration from the Pro 9400. The Jabra Engage Series is engineered to be the world’s most powerful professional range of wireless headsets. Utilizing new, exclusive technology that gives 3x better wireless density – while still maintaining excellent connection quality – Engage helps deliver better conversations to boost customer satisfaction.
The Engage series boasts better sounding calls, more talk time (up to 13 hours!), and better productivity because of the built-in busylights on each headset. Security features going beyond DECT security Step C providing enhanced protection against eavesdropping. A micro-USB charger in the base makes it easier to dock the headset correctly in one simple action and ensure it is charging. With the fast charge feature, you can power the headset to 40% in just 30 minutes. If the battery gets critically low during a call, Jabra Engage can also be charged using a standard wall
charger while you are still on the call.
What is the difference between Engage 65 and Engage 75? Engage 65 connects to desk phones and PCs, and buttons on the base unit are intuitive and easy to use. Engage 75 headsets can connect to five devices simultaneously: 2 USB devices (softphone and/or desk phone), 2 Bluetooth devices and 1 analog desk phone. The base unit is touchscreen.
New to the Engage series are the Convertible models with a smaller ear speaker and 3 included wearing styles: ear hook, neckband and headband. The Convertible model is available in both Engage 65 and Engage 75 variants.
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.
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).
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.
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.
Sennheiser’s MB 660 UC 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 comes in a hard-sided case for travel convenience. A certified Microsoft Skype for Business version is also available: MB 660 MS. MSRP is $449.95.
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.
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.
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.
Download Plantronics Hub software to gain call control across multiple softphones. A headset control panel allows for customizing settings, including call notification. MSRP for the Blackwire 725 is $179.99.
USB and 3.5mm Connection
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
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.
Noisy open offices can lead to unproductive and stressed-out employees ... and, unfortunately, this work environment is prevalent. Organizations should look to headsets as tools to bridge the gap and increase productivity in the workplace. Headsets must meet the needs of employees (who need headsets that are comfortable, convenient, and cancel background noise) and their customers (who need clear conversations, every time they call) to achieve organizational goals.
Plantronics' newest DECT wireless headset series, the Savi 8200, has been built for the human experience. The Savi 8220 features active noise canceling (ANC) that blocks out background noise so you can always stay focused on what’s important. This is the first headset on the market that's designed with ANC for desk phones! And, to further enhance collaboration and communication, these headsets also connect to PCs and mobile phones/tablets. Count on Plantronics technology for rich, people-first collaboration experiences so good that ideas can be shared and heard—wherever, whenever and however they happen.
With the noise-canceling mic, you’ll sound your best even in noisy environments. For the most sensitive environments, you can turn up noise canceling with the close conversation limiting feature (configurable in Plantronics Hub, free download here) for additional privacy. The mic boom is flexible, allowing for optimal placement: two finger widths away from the corner of the user's mouth.
Top Features of the Savi 8220:
*Active Noise Canceling
*UC and Microsoft certified versions
*Conference up to 4 headsets to 1 base unit - great for training in contact centers and also conference calls
*Connect 2 devices together, for conferencing between PC to desk phone; or mobile phone to PC
*13 hours of talk time!
*Ringer on the base (can be disabled, if needed)
*Large leatherette ear cushions and padded leatherette headband
*Roam up to 590 feet away from the base (this depends upon physical environment)
*DECT Security certified: uses the latest standards in DECT wireless security
The Savi 8200 also comes in a single-ear variant, which does not have ANC. And, just like the Savi 8220 headsets, the Savi 8210 comes in UC and Microsoft versions for every user environment.
Is it time to reassess headsets at your organization? Are you looking for high quality professional headsets with superior sound?
Take a look at the Plantronics Savi 8200 headsets, and call one of our headset experts today: 1-866-998-9991.