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Solteras Archer Bluetooth headset review: Solteras Archer Bluetooth headset

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The Good Solid sound quality.

The Bad Cumbersome design; loose fit.

The Bottom Line The Solteras Archer offers acceptable sound quality, but its fit and comfort leave much to be desired.

4.6 Overall

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Solteras Archer Bluetooth headset

The last time we looked at a Solteras Bluetooth headset, we weren't terribly impressed with what we saw. Though the Halo model offered fine sound quality and fantastic battery life (a full 15 days on standby), the trade-offs were significant. The large, unsightly battery sat uncomfortably behind our ear, and the black-and-white coloring made it all the more conspicuous.

After such an assessment, we were hopeful Solteras would win us over the second time around with the Archer. Unfortunately, that failed to be the case. While the company improved the style somewhat with curved lines and a basic black hue, the fit went too far in the other direction. Whereas the Halo was too tight, the 0.8-ounce Archer was too loose and barely hung on either ear. In fact, unless we were sitting completely still, it fell off several times.

The problem seems to lie with the Archer's design. Rather than fitting over the ear, the headset employs a behind-the-ear design with a somewhat inflexible, protruding earpiece that wraps around the side of the ear. As a result, we were never able to secure it completely, and the 2-inch boom mic kept hitting our cheek. And not only is the fit unstable, there's no way to significantly adjust the Archer to your specific ears.

The upside to the Archer was its performance. As with its predecessor, we had few problems with call quality, and callers said they were able to hear us. We encountered static on one occasion, but overall we didn't notice a problem. Solteras improved on the Halo's tiny buttons, however. With just two amply sized controls, the Archer was easy to use, and we had no problem pairing it to our Motorola V600. The headset has a rated talk time of 6 hours and a promised standby time of 10 days. We recorded only half that on a single charge. Road warriors should be wary, as the included travel charger is fairly large.

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