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Motorola HS820 Bluetooth Headset (Gloss Black) review: Motorola HS820 Bluetooth Headset (Gloss Black)

The Motorola HS820 offers most of the Bluetooth headset basics. Read our review to see if it's right for you.

Kent German Former senior managing editor / features
Kent was a senior managing editor at CNET News. A veteran of CNET since 2003, he reviewed the first iPhone and worked in both the London and San Francisco offices. When not working, he's planning his next vacation, walking his dog or watching planes land at the airport (yes, really).
Kent German
2 min read
Motorola HS820 Bluetooth headset
Though they have the same parents, the Motorola HS820 Bluetooth headset looks nothing like its siblings, the Motorola HS8910 and the Motorola HS850. Instead of having an oval form factor and a silver-and-blue color scheme, it's styled in silver and black and has a long, slender (2.5 inches) shape with an integrated mic. Overall, we weren't pleased with the new look. The color pattern was a bit too severe for our tastes, and we sorely missed the HS8910's and HS850's folding boom mic, which doubled as a power control. Still, the HS820 offered satisfactory performance and a comfortable fit, so if you don't mind the style, it's worth a test drive. Moreover, the $79 price tag is reasonable.

The Motorola HS820 has a traditional over-the-ear fit through a flexible ear loop that can readily be switched for either ear. The headset easily slipped on and off and was so light (0.6 ounces) that we hardly knew we were wearing it. We also appreciated that the earpiece rested against our ear rather than protruding into it.


Motorola HS820 Bluetooth Headset (Gloss Black)

The Good

Solid audio clarity; comfortable fit.

The Bad

Volume sometimes low; ho-hum styling.

The Bottom Line

Though we weren't impressed by the Motorola HS820's style, it offers satisfactory performance for a low-range Bluetooth headset.

Controls on the headset were easy to master. A large multifunction button in the center of the HS820 turns it on and off, readies it for pairing, and controls calling functions. Though it was easy to find and press while we wearing the headset, we thought the twin volume buttons on either side were too small. There's also a small blue LED light near the tip of the HS820 that indicates the headset's status; we preferred the larger light on the HS8910 and the HS850.

We tested the Motorola HS820 with the Sony Ericsson S710a, though it will work with most Bluetooth phones. We had no problem pairing the devices and quickly got up and running. Conversations were mostly clear, though volume was somewhat low at times. We experienced diminished sound quality in noisy environments, but nothing particularly bothersome. Though the headset supports voice dialing, we had to speak rather loudly to make it recognize a name. The HS820 promises 6 hours of talk time and a little more than four days of standby time. We got three days of standby time in our tests.