Jabra HALO Bluetooth Stereo Headset review:

Jabra HALO Bluetooth Stereo Headset

We paired the Jabra Halo with the Apple iPhone 3G and the Samsung Rogue. The pairing process was smooth for both phones. Some phones require a PIN for pairing while others don't; in our case, the iPhone 3G required us to enter a PIN, and the Samsung Rogue did not. The Halo automatically goes into pairing mode the first time it's turned on; to pair it with another device later on, you'll have to press the multifunction button down for a while until the Bluetooth indicator stays a solid blue.

Sound quality for audio playback was OK. Part of this is because of the design of the ear pads--if they were made to mold to our ears a little better, we might have got a bit more richness from the audio. In fact, when we pushed the ear pads to our ears, we did hear better bass. Left as is, though, audio quality was decent but nothing to write home about.

Call quality just did not hold up to Jabra's promises. When we were in a quiet room, it was OK. We heard our callers clearly without a lot of static. Voice quality did seem a bit tinny, but wasn't too horrible. On their end, callers reported quite a bit of echo, and they said our voice sounded quite harsh and machine-like. Still, they could hear us and we could carry on a conversation.

It was a different ballgame when we stepped outside, however. For all the Halo's claims of noise-cancellation, we experienced almost inaudible conversations when we were out on a busy city sidewalk. We heard our callers fine for the most part, but on their end, they could hardly hear us. They reported quite a bit of background noise and said our voice sounded muffled and a little crackly. During one call, they couldn't make out what we were saying at all.

The Jabra Halo's features include the normal answering, ending, and rejecting calls. It also has last-number redial. If your phone or device supports the AVRCP (Audio Video Remote Control Profile) Bluetooth profile, you can also use the headset to control music playback and to advance tracks.

The Halo comes with a USB charger, an AC adapter, a carrying pouch, and a 3.5-millimeter patch cord that connects to the Halo's charger jack in case your phone or music player doesn't have stereo Bluetooth. It has a rated battery life of 8 hours talk time or 8 hours music playback, and 13 days of standby.

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