Many Bluetooth Headsets are beginning to make and market small, ultra-portable Bluetooth Headsets. Count Samsung as one of them because the Samsung WEP-500 Bluetooth Headset is a simple, stylish, and ULTRA-small Bluetooth Headset.
The headset itself is no bigger than a quarter, with such small stature does it sacrifice in performance? Or is the Samsung WEP-500 Bluetooth Headset the best of both worlds?
Read on for the rest of the review!
The Samsung WEP-500 is a very impressive looking headset. It’s not the flashiest or shiniest headset around but I think that's a good choice by Samsung's Design Team. I think a lot of people will appreciate the WEP-500’s subtle style, it doesn't overwhelm you with bells and whistles. The headset’s color scheme is classy, with a matte black outlining a sleeker bluish black. It also comes in a version with muted silver outlining a tasteful black.
The Samsung WEP-500 is unique because of its circular design and of course, tiny size. Unlike other ultra-portable Bluetooth Headsets, the body of the Samsung WEP-500 is fairly thin. The indicator light is also unobtrusive but also can be turned off by holding the volume button. I definitely enjoy the overall look and build quality of this headset. Too many times, Bluetooth Headsets scream ‘Hey! Look at me!’. The Samsung WEP-500 is confident enough in its styling choices that it doesn’t feel the need to overcome any perceived shortcomings.
Because of the WEP-500’s small size, the button layout is rather simple. There’s a multifunction button and volume controls. I found the multifunction button to be much too easy to press and overly sensitive. I’ve hung up on a few calls while trying to adjust the fit and didn't know what hit me. The position of the button is expected but the button itself is just a little too sensitive for my taste; Samsung should have definitely made a stiffer, less obtrusive multipurpose button.
Another sacrifice in having such a small design is that it requires a charging cradle. I’m not a particular fan of charging cradles because it adds another item that needs to be carried. Luckily, the charging cradle doubles as a carrying case and the WEP-500’s battery life is better than similar headsets. Though 3.5 hours may be paltry to heavy users, for an ultraportable headset, it’s almost as good as it gets.
The fit is decent, the design is almost “in-ear” but it is not as bothersome as in-ear ear buds typically are. Though I did find a few instances where I felt as if the headset was about to fall out—the headset managed to stay fairly secure the whole time. However, I wouldn’t recommend running or even light jogging with this particular headset since there doesn't seem to be an ear loop option.
A notable feature on this headset is the addition of a secondary microphone. I found it very surprising for a device so small to have TWO microphones. And you know what? The addition of two microphones seemed to have helped and make this headset a standout performer. Callers heard me loud and clear, the echo cancellation really seemed to work. Even in noisier settings, the callers didn’t complain as much as they have in testing of previous headsets.
Incoming audio quality is also very impressive. It has similar technology as Plantronics AudioIQ, which essentially means it adjusts the volume to your surroundings. Specifically, it'll get louder in loud areas and quieter in quiet areas. Plus the in-ear design helps block out background noise, the incoming audio is really great.
Overall the Samsung WEP-500 is a solid performer. It combines subtle style with great audio performance, I am happy to use such a great piece of technology. The fit isn’t amazing but after a few times I’ve grown accustomed to it. The circular shape is unique in the world of Bluetooth Headsets and the indicator light isn't blinding.
My biggest gripe is the sensitivity of the multifunction button. Samsung really should have made it a bit stiffer, I have accidentally ended a call too many times. After a while I got used to the sensitivity and made it more of a point to handle the headset with care. If Samsung ever comes up with a solution to this minor problem, the WEP-500 will become an excellent headset that everyone should own. In the meantime, I can still recommend this to anyone looking for an ultraportable headset because it still works as advertised: great styling and great audio quality.