Motorola HS815 Headset Review

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Introduction
What we are testing at the moment is the Motorola HS815 – pioneer model offered from Cingular. It is standard wireless headset based on Bluetooth 1.2 technology and isn’t part of any fashionable or small class of the manufacturer.

What you can notice immediately is its size – the HS815 is old model and is enormous, as big as small-sized modern cellphone, but with funny-looking form and long boom microphone. It is 3.46” (88mm) measured from the top of the microphone to the rear side, where the old-style charging connector sits, as the headset uses built-in irreplaceable rechargeable battery for a power source.

The HS815 is almost entirely made out of plastic with hard rubber only over the earhook; the front side is combination of blue and silver glossy surface with small metal strip in the middle. The back is gray hard plastic with very relief form – the middle is raised, and there is attached the earhook rotating mechanism. In the rear part is the earpiece, which is a big cone with six holes in it – you won’t see any rubber or material that cares for your ears, while the headset is installed on them. The big size of the ear piece won’t allow it to be oriented to your ear canal, which will bring more inconvenience during a call.

The ear-hook is also awful as it doesn’t do anything right – it’s hard to attach, doesn’t hold the headset still, and is uncomfortable. Made of plastic and hard rubber, it will show no mercy on your ear. It cannot be opened for easier attaching but can be rotated for use with either of the ears.



Typically, for control of the headset there are three buttons – a couple of volume keys and multifunctional call key. The latter is situated in the middle of the front side, at the opposite part of the earpiece. It is slightly raised, but you will hardly feel it with your finger and pressing it when an incoming call comes may be a problem; hopefully it gives strong feedback and you will be sure it is correctly hit.

For volume control is used a rocker key, which is on the top side, when the headset is worn on the right ear, and respectively on the bottom, in case you are using it on your left side. It’s raised and can be easily found when is on the top, but if the headset is oriented upside-down, it won’t be that easy to use them. It’s hard to press either of the positions, but at least the effort will return tactile feedback.

Once again, for system information is used a simple blue LED light with the Motorola logo stamped over it. It is situated below the multifunctional key on the front side and unfortunately is slightly stronger than we’d like it to be, so it will be noticed when you are in dark environment.

Functionality:

On the functionality part, you can’t be surprised by anything with the headset; if you’ve used another Bluetooth kit like this will know how to pair it – holding the multifunctional key for about four seconds while HS815 is off will put it in pairing mode; search and find it through your phone and enter 0000 for key.

While in standby mode, the calling key can be used in two ways: a simple quick click or holding it for a couple of seconds and releasing it, pleasantly indicated by a beep. Those two actions will respectively bring the voice recognition up or recall the last dialed number, or answer or reject an incoming call. You can’t mute the microphone during a call.

Performance:

After the things we’ve written so far, you think that the design is the main drawback of the HS815 – but it is not; the voice quality is totally disappointing. During a call there is noise (poping) on the both ends and the other party hears you very low and crappy. The incoming voice is average in strength but muffled.

In our Battery test for continues talk time, the HS815 performed unexpectedly well! It scored 7 hours of talk time, which is 15%-20% more than the average headset’ score which is 6hours (see the chart below).

To test its performance in noisy or windy environment, we used our special fan and probably thanks to the big boom microphone, the results were better than those of the ultra-small headsets, but worse than those of headsets featuring hardware or software (digital signal processing) noise-canceling mechanisms.

Comfort:

The HS815 is uncomfortable and it couldn’t be worse – every aspect of wearing the headset is done awful: attaching it even with two hands is very hard, as the ear hook can not be adjusted in any way and it even can not be curved. In order to install it correctly, we’d advise you to put it on from the back to the front, but even in this case if you have long hair may tweak it.

Once on your head, it is not solid installed and wobbles even with the slightest movement of the head. The heavy weight reminds you of something on your ear all the time, and so does the hard hook. If you shake your head, the headset will either slap your face or fall off from it.

You may forgive it is uncomfortable, if it looks good on it – but that’s definitely not the case with the HS815 – it is big, chunky and blue, and the microphone is long and funny. You wouldn’t improve your technique-look level with it, but may get some mockery, based on it.

Conclusion:

Motorola HS815 cannot compare with ANY modern headset – it’s big, bulky, and in our opinion – ugly. It lacks any functionality but the basic, it’s hard to attach it, and when you achieve it – it is uncomfortable and painful for your ears. When we add awful sound quality on the both sides, we realize that the HS815 is a piece of junk.

Pros

  • Retro look for the lovers

Cons

  • Big size and chunky design
  • Uncomfortable to install and wear
  • Low quality sound
  • Weak battery live

PhoneArena Rating:

3.0

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