Plantronics Discovery 975 Bluetooth Headset Review

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I reviewed the Plantronics Discovery 925 last year and loved its stylish look, great fit, and superior performance. I have been using it regularly ever since. So, the day Plantronics released the, as some say, even more fashionable Discovery 975, I emailed Julie asking if I could review their latest bluetooth headset.

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The Discovery 975 is Plantronics current flagship bluetooth headset. And as its packaging states, this earpiece is truly ‘Ingeniously Simple’.

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Package Contents

  • Plantronics Discovery 975 Bluetooth Headset
  • Leather charging case
  • Micro-USB to AC power adapter
  • Extra gel earpieces
  • Case strap
  • User guide

Features

  • Dual-mic AudioIQ² technology simultaneously captures your voice and cancels background noise for superb call clarity
  • WindSmart technology provides three layers of protection against wind noise
  • Carrying case recharges the earpiece and triples talk and standby time
  • Patented gel ear tips offer a secure and comfortable fit
  • Up to five hours of talk time and one week of standby, from a single charge
  • QuickPair technology for easy pairing with virtually any Bluetooth-enabled phone
  • One-year limited warranty

Hardware Specifications

Bluetooth Profiles Headset Profile (HSP), Hands Free Profile (HFP)
Connectivity Technology Bluetooth 2.0 EDR
Form Factor Earbud
Color Black/silver
Transmission Range 33 ft
Dimensions (LxWxH) 2.7in x 0.9in x 0.5in
Weight (g) 8.5g (.3oz)
Talk time 5 hours
Standby time 7 days
Battery Rechargeable – Lithium ion
Warranty One year

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The Discovery 925 took bluetooth headset fashion where it had never gone before and the 975 takes that one step further. The 975’s minimalist design is extremely sleek and high-tech looking (right out of a SciFi movie; first thing that comes to mind is Uhura). The material covering the front of the earbud body is almost identical in look/feel to the back of my Blackberry Bold, a black leather-like material. At first glance the microphone bar appears to be metal but is sadly just plastic. Not a big deal however, since if it were metal, the earphone would most likely weigh more. The boom does seem to be fragile, but if it is like the less than rugged looking 925 mic, it will stand the test of time.

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The call control button controls the power on/off, call answer/end/pause/redial, pairing, and reconnect when back in range. The white stripe is also a LED indicator that flashes various colors depending on the state, letting you know it is doing.  Like the 925, the earbud has a single volume button that cycles through 3 volume levels, mute on/off, and online indicator on/off.

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The microphone boom has two built-in mics (AudioIQ² technology) engineered to simultaneously capture your voice and cancel/remove background noise. This, in combination with Plantronics’ WindSmart technology, gives you a very clear listening experience, even in the worst conditions. The 975 did excellent during my standard walk thru Seattle during rush hour traffic test, those that I talked with could hear me clearly…while I could hear them loud and clear as well.

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The Discovery 975 is charged via a microUSB port. I would have preferred one of the more standard miniUSB ports but it would have been difficult to engineer something that large into such a small tech-package.

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One of the best features of the 925 was its carrying case that not only protected the relatively delicate device but charged it as well. The 975 includes a new and improved version of Plantronics’ charging case. The case holds two additional charges, giving you three charges worth of power heading out the door. That is a ton of standby time and a good amount of talk time.

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The 975 slips easily into its very well made and protective home. One of the minor issues I had with the 925 is that it was sometimes difficult to get the earbud out of its case.

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But Plantronics has fixed that issue by engineering an ejection button into the 975’s case which pushes the earbud off the charging plug and slightly out of the case, making it effortless to take the headset out.

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Plantronics has also added a small but very informative indicator window in the 975’s case. The indicator lets you know how much charge you have on both the case and headset. It also let you know if your bluetooth headset is still connected to your cellphone.

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The Discovery 975 is very lightweight and comfortable. You can barely tell its there. The small, medium, and large gel earpieces make it reasonably easy to get the perfect fit. The 975 design and gel earpieces do a good job keeping the device in your ear and where you angle it. Not having an over-the-ear-hook design does make it more prone to come loose or fall out. Neither the 925 or 975 is meant to be left in your ear as you sprint for the bus.

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The bottom line is, like its predecessor, the Plantronics Discovery 975 delivers an exceptionally clear calling experience.  Also like the Discovery 925, the 975 is as comfortable as it is stylish. At $129, Plantronics’ latest & greatest bluetooth headset is one of the most expensive bluetooth earpieces currently available. Since it is almost functionally identical to the Discovery 925,  available at less than half the cost, the older model is a much better bang for the buck. But if money is no object or the latest style is your thing, Plantronics’ Discovery 975 is definitely a worthy contender…..

 

Product Information

Price:$129.99
Manufacturer:Plantronics
Pros:
  • - Quality materials and construction
  • - Lightweight
  • - Improved rechargeable case
  • - Great high-tech styling (definitely fashionable)
  • - Excellent feature set
  • - Multipoint technology (the ability to be paired with two cellphones simultaneously)
Cons:
  • - Single volume button
  • - Fragile
Posted in: Bluetooth Gear, Reviews

6 comments… add one

  • Norberto Maldonado December 9, 2009, 11:27 am

    How does the call quality and battery life stack up against the Voyager Pro?
    Fit is probably the biggest concern for me. I’ve been using the Discovery 520 I believe it is for a pretty long time now and initially the over the ear fit was decent but as I used it more and more away from my desk I found the fit to be loose. It kinda sways off the ear also affecting sound quality.
    Also it’s begun to really fall apart forcing me to Krazy glue so much of it. First it started with the ear loop, which is so poorly put together, then the rubber piece between the headset and ear loop started to come off. Now I’m embarrassed to even be seen with it in public.
    Anyway, I’ve been leaning towards the Pro because I also owned the Plantronics wireless system for business phones that had a similar design and the fit on that was pretty good.
    thanks

    1
  • Erick December 9, 2009, 10:32 pm

    Hey Norb, I have this BT and I love it. I lost my jawbone prime and picked this up along with a 9700. I ditched my iphone and jawbone prime for these two items. So far I love the 975. Im not used to having such a long boom but the battery life is superb just like the 9700. The little pouch that comes along is very handy. I thought the extra pouch/charging case would be very useful because I thought the battery life wasnt that good but I use the charging case maybe once in 2 days and thats just to top off the battery on the earpiece.
    Its my first time trying plantronics. I saw the voyager pro but its too bulky for my style. I saw this and jumped on it. Great Item I def recommend it.

    2
  • guy December 7, 2010, 4:57 pm

    What is the Online Indicator and Multipoint Feature?

    Both are mentioned in the Getting Started booklet that came with the unit.

    3
  • Occam December 16, 2010, 12:12 am

    For shame. It’s “Uhura”.

    But I enjoyed your review, as well as the reviews of competitive models. Nice to see stuff that’s not paid advertising.

    4
  • Dave Rees December 16, 2010, 9:39 am

    @Occam: Thanks for the correction. To be honest, I would not be where I am today (in some part), if it weren’t for the invention of spell-checker. I am horrible @ spelling……

    5
  • Steve December 19, 2010, 4:27 pm

    I have lost 3 of these. The product managers have seen that the ear loop should be added as an option but do not. I saw one on an ATT rep in the store and he had cobbled together a loop from one of the other headsets, worked just fine.

    6

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