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Pre-Review: Motorola HT820 Stereo Bluetooth Headset for iPhone 3.0

dsc05771

Come this “summer”, iPhone 3.0 — see our walkthrough — will allow iPhone 3G (and perhaps next-generation iPhone users) to enjoy new Bluetooth functionality including stereo headsets, both the A2DP audio and ARCP control protocols. For consumers, the Motorola HT820 Stereo Bluetooth headset (available from our sibling store, WMExperts) may be an option you want to consider come release day. For developers testing using the A2DP/ARCP profiles on the iPhone 3.0 Beta, they might even be something you want to consider now.

Note: This pre-review will not be focusing on iPhone 3.0 functionality, which is currently in closed beta. It will concentrate only on the headset itself. However, for those developers needing an A2DP headset for testing 3.0, it’s our understanding this one works well on multiple units, over multiple carriers.

headset-switchheadset-setupheadset-in-ipod-app

Form Factor

dsc05784The HT820 Stereo Bluetooth headphones fit over-the-ear style behind your head. The headphones rest on the top of your ears, not in them. The earpieces are very well padded and provide excellent sound. The two earpieces provide some substantial weight to the headphones and if you are lying down, may not be all that practical. For your convenience the headset comes with a soft carry pouch, Bluetooth drivers for your PC, a Bluetooth receiver (in case you don't have one) and headphone extension cable.

Controls

There is the "M" logo that blinks blue when the headset is on and each earpiece has a unique function. The left earpiece is used for making calls and has the volume control buttons (up and down). The right side is for music, skipping tracks, charging USB port and attaching an extra 3.5mm headset.

Functionality

dsc05782This headset boasts some really nice functionality; 17 hours of talk, 15 hours of music, 500 hours of standby. This is more than enough to get you through a couple of days of use. In my testing, I was very pleased with the battery life. I am not an audiophile (heck, I listen to everything in 128kbps) so these things sound awesome. I can't attest to this if you are huge audio-junkie. Regardless, they sound better the the headphones that come with the iPhone.

Conclusion

dsc05795I have never used a stereo  Bluetooth headset before and I have to admit I was very impressed. Not only from the wireless freedom they give, but the sound was rather good. The added value of making phone calls was a really nice bonus. The only real issue I have with this headset is the weight. I wear glasses and these headphones rest directly on the top of your ear. The "resting piece" is a solid rubber, but still, after 20 minutes of use, I would notice ear fatigue. I don't attribute this to the headset, but if you wear glasses, this type of headset may not work since it adds more pressure on the top of your ear since it is also competing for space with your glasses' frame. If you don't wear glasses, this headset might work for you. If you do, I recommend the Motorola S9 Stereo Bluetooth headset; check Rene's review for more info.

This headset is great, and I will "suffer" through the minor ear fatigue just to use them. They provide a great value in functionality and sound great.

Pros

  • Stereo bluetooth and headset in one!
  • Sound is great
  • Very comfortable, padded earpiece
  • Additional 3.5mm jack for headphones
  • Built in volume controls and skip tracks functionality
  • Awesome battery life

Cons

  • Heavier than your average headset
  • If you wear glasses, can cause fatigue on your ears
  • Not best for laying done

TiPb Accessory Pre-Review Rating:

rating

Chad Garrett

Software trainer, blogger and mobile technology enthusiast living in the suburban Midwest.

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Reader comments

Pre-Review: Motorola HT820 Stereo Bluetooth Headset for iPhone 3.0

22 Comments

I have the exact same bluetooth headset and I did use it own my old lg chocolate. It did well and for the price, it was worth it. I'm glad that Apple finally got the full bluietooth for the new 3.0 softwhere. I hope the 3.,0 doles come out tommorrw and not next mounth. I also hope that this will not be the last major update for the iPhone 3g, cause I think video will be a updrafe with the 3.0, not a new phone.

I have a couple pairs of these, have used them before but the ear cushions fall off easily and unfortunately I have lost them. So far I have not found replacements.

"I don’t attribute this to the headset,..." You might as well because the HT820 is easily the worst headset I have ever used when it comes to ergonomics. Solid rubber = FAIL! For me, they only hurt my ears after prolonged use, but I have read from people who said they gave them blisters; and having had the "privilege" to use the Motos I am inclined to believe those people. The headset itself features mediocre sound (even for a BT headset) and battery life and does not deserve more than three stars for that alone. Factor in the discomfort of wearing them and I would rather give them two... their rather cheap price and the 3.5mm jack saving them from being a complete failure.

I have a pair of these and really like them. The battery life is amazing and I love talking on the phone in stereo (with my iPhone 2G). They are a bit heavy and make one look like they are wearing some compact Princess Leia earmuffs. Overall, a great set of headphones, they just need a revamp to make them lighter and more compact.

I agree with most of this review. The sound is pretty good on this unit. I have had it for several months using it with my mac at times. The bluetooth connection on the iphone can be a bit flaky, not sure if it is the iPhone or the headset. I have not been able to to get the change track buttons to work. Not sure if there is anyone else who has an idea why this is so or a way to get them to work. Other than that enjoying using these. They do wear on your ears after a while with the weight. More for active people who are up and about doing things and don't mind looking a little strange.

Can't advance a song on iPhone 3G 3.0. If you hold the right button down, it will stop and when you play again, it will play from the beginning.

Chad: You may want to do some further testing, as like Sean, I installed the 3.0 update and paired my Motorola HT820 with the iPhone and while music playback, pause and volume works, track advance does not. Unless this is an issue with Apple, I fear that these headphone may not be compatible with the iPhone's stereo bluetooth functions. Also, it is worth mentioning that these headphones were released nearly 3 years ago.

I do have HT820 and Iphone 3G 3.0 and having the same issue regarding not able to skip songs.Its not the the HT820 cause skipping works well using it with my laptop.My ear does hurt too but the sound pretty good.Cushion does falls off.

I am using this headset with my Ipod Touch with the 3.0 software and the track advance or back does not work either. Sometimes the pause and play button doesn't work either. Not especially comfortable either tho I do like the sound.

The will work with the iPhone 3G S. I'm using them right now. Unfortunately the ear cushions are falling apart and Motorola does not have replacements... nor, it seems, does anyone else. :o(

I have a Moto HT820 headset that i have had for prabably 3 years using it originally with the Motorokr, and the the Motokrazr and BlackBerry 8800 and it work great with complete functionally with all until i got the iPhone 3GS software 3.1.2 and have had nothing but trouble getting it to work properly. As stated the pause works ocassionally volumn up/down works great the track advance/back will not work with iPhone, anybody have a fix that you can share.

for the vast canvass, but I'm charmed the new Zune, and prospect this, as recovered as the superior reviews any else group soul longhand, gift cater you terminate if it's the proper selection for you.

These headphones are great! They work perfect with the iphone 4. All the buttons work for music and calling. You can even connect two devices. Listening to music on your macbook and when a calls comes in, the music pauses and you can pick up. After the call the music starts playing again:)

I am generally just an observer when it comes to blogs, but this actually made me need to leave a comment. Wonderful work!