I've been wearing Bluetooth headsets for about as long as they have been around, and have owned lots and tried even more. And I have a new favorite, the BlueAnt Z9. Here's the scoop:
- The Z9 is small, one of the smallest and lightest headsets I have tried.
- It is also extremely comfortable to wear, even for very long periods. It is so comfortable that I often forget I am wearing it.
- Sound quality is superb, at least based on what the people on the other end of the connection are telling me.
- Many very lightweight headsets have optional ear loops, but they often feel like afterthoughts, not fitting the devices well or coming apart (Plantronics devices seem very prone to this). The Z9 ear loops (there are 3 of them, all identical, or so it seems) fit well and stay in place properly.
- Battery life is really good.
- It comes with both an AC charger and a USB cable. The latter is an absolute must for anyone who travels, and I automatically rule out any Bluetooth headset that does not include this necessity.
- The Z9 comes with a built in clip, making it easier to carry the headset in your pocket or attached to your shirt and so on.
- The headset is firmware upgradeable. The actual upgrade process is convoluted and horribly unfriendly (yes, I tried it). Still, it's nice to know that firmware updates are an option if they are needed.
- I have only found one downside with the headset, and that is that I find the volume too low. Others hear me fine, the problem is me hearing them. It's fine in most environments when cranked up to the highest volume, but in noisy environments the volume is definitely too low. I contacted BlueAnt and they suggested that I update the firmware which I did, and unfortunately it did not make a difference. This is a shame, and hopefully they can release another firmware update that really does fix the problem.
The verdict? The BlueAnt Z9 is definitely the very best Bluetooth headset I have owned, and is highly recommended (but keep that one negative in mind). It is available from Amazon.com.