The Best USB Headset

Jabra BIZ 2400 USB MS Duo Lync Optimized Corded Headset

Our Top Pick for 2016: Jabra BIZ 2400 USB MS Duo Lync Optimized Corded Headset
Read our full review.

See it on Amazon for $65.17*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.
Too expensive? See our budget pick.

Communication is a driving force in technology. In fact, some of the biggest leaps in technology over the past few decades have been in the realm of communication. USB headsets are allowing millions of people around the world the opportunity to take advantage of these new forms of communication. Whether it is a group of people in different parts of the globe sitting together and playing the same video game or whether it is office workers in two different cities communicating with each other via VoIP, USB headsets play a role. When a USB headset is connected to a computer, to a gaming console, or to some other electronic device, it does not need an analog microphone input or a speaker output. Since these headsets play such an important role in modern-day communication, we thought it would be a great idea to spend some time reviewing the best devices on the market. We have divided them into three categories. We have our gold, silver, and bronze products. At the end we will discuss one USB headset that can work when the budget is tight.

Table of contents

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Double-Sided
Noise Canceling
Minimum Distortion
Adjustable Headband
High Quality Audio
Built-in Equalizer
Ultra Noise Canceling
Crystal Clear Conversation
Unidirectional Microphone
Pivotable Microphone Boom
Intuitive Call Control
Padded Headband
Light-Weight
Seamless Connection
High Performance

*Price at time of publishing and may not reflect current pricing.

#1 Gold pick (Winner): Jabra BIZ 2400 USB MS Duo Lync Optimized Corded Headset

Jabra BIZ 2400 USB MS Duo Lync Optimized Corded Headset Gold Pick

View it on Amazon for $65.17*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.

2016-gold-winnerTo get a good feel for the quality of the headsets that we are reviewing, what we tried to evaluate how well they work in a real world setting. In doing this, we found that the USB headset produced by Jabra was of excellent quality.

This device has been specifically designed to work with your computer and to provide superior results when using voiceover IP software. For this reason, we appreciated the noise canceling microphone on the headset. This is good if an individual is talking at home with friends and family using their computer, or if an individual is working in a cubicle surrounded by other talking individuals. Thanks to the noise canceling feature, you can talk into the microphone and the person on the other side is only going to hear your voice. They’re not going to hear all of the ambient noise around you.

The second thing that caught our attention was the quality of the cord. The cord is Kevlar reinforced. This is important because, especially in office settings, there are a lot of things that your cord can get snagged on. If your cord breaks, you lose your headset, you lose the call that you are making, and in some instances you can actually lose a client. The durability of this cord minimizes the chances that something like this will happen.

We also liked the HD voice quality. When using a headset like this, you want the other person to be able to hear you clearly. And the microphone on this device produces a crystal-clear sound that transmits intelligible communication. Anyone who has used a lower quality product realizes that if the mic is not good, the person on the other side of the call won’t be able to hear you. They might be able to hear noise, but that’s just about it. Something else that we liked about this model was the microphone’s ability to pick up sound from a larger radius. While not picking up the ambient sound, the mic was powerful enough to pick up a person’s voice with the mic boom being in different positions.

Speaking about the mic and the boom, this headset is designed with the only 360° unbreakable swivel boom. Those of us who have gone through many USB headsets because they keep breaking at the boom realize how important it really is.

This device can even be connected to your cell phone via Bluetooth. Now, it does not have the 3.5 connector that you would need to plug it into your phone, but as long as your headset is plugged into a USB port, like on your computer or in your automobile to receive power, it can be connected to your cell phone and receive phone calls.

The reviewers on Amazon.com really enjoyed using this product. There are scores of reviews on the site for this product, and more than 60 percent of the reviews gave a 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.

One reviewer said that they finally found the perfect home office headset. This individual went on to explain that in their line of work, both he and his wife sit next to each other in the same home office, talking to their clients. Because of the small space in the home office, cross talk can be a problem. They really appreciate how well the headset’s directional microphone cancels out the extra noise. They also appreciate the fact that the headset can be connected to their cell phone via Bluetooth. So whether they are getting a call on the computer or if they are getting a call on their cell phone, they can answer it without a problem. They also mentioned how much they appreciate the speaker quality. They can clearly hear what the person on the other side of the line is saying.

Another reviewer, who said that the product was awesome, talked about how they do multiple hours of online meetings every single week. They feel that the product saved them because it fits their larger than average head without pinching. They’re also impressed by the quality of the product saying that they have dropped it from their desk multiple times, but it has never broke.

Reviewer after reviewer speaks highly about this product. Whether they are impressed by its style, its quality, durability, the fact that it is plug and play, or the fact that it has an intuitive call control, there are many good reviews about this product.

We are sure that this headset will be a welcomed addition whether you are using it for personal communication with friends or family, using it in your home office, or giving it to your employees to use in a cubicle or call center environment.

#2 Silver pick (Runner-up): Sennheiser CC 520 Binaural Headset with Ultra Noise-Canceling Microphone

Sennheiser CC 520 Binaural Headset with Ultra Noise-Canceling Microphone

View it on Amazon for $117.32*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.

2016-silver-winnerWe love this headset because it is perfect for noisy environments. You can tell that the manufacturers understood the conditions that exist in an office space or in a call center. The headset is equipped with an ultrasensitive noise canceling microphone. This is especially important in an office environment for two reasons. The first reason is that the last thing you want is your client to hear more of what is going on around you than what you are actually saying. The second reason why this is important is because if your client cannot hear you because of the ambient noise, you are forced to raise your voice to be heard. This can lead to you coming across like you’re yelling at your client. And this is the absolute last thing you want to have happen. With the USB headset produced by Sennheiser, you are guaranteed that the noise around you will have no effect on the quality of your phone call.

A nice safety feature with this product is that it is designed to protect you from acoustic shock. Acoustic shock is a condition that happens when a person is exposed to loud noises while wearing a headset. More times than not this happens to a person when they are talking on their phone using their headset. Acoustic shock can leave a person with a headache, ear pain, nausea, anxiety, and poor balance. Yet none of this is a problem with the Sennheiser model thanks to the ActiveGuard technology.

The microphone boom can be rotated 300°. You can put it just about wherever you want. It has a Teflon washer that makes it easier for you to accurately maneuver the boom, and this also increases the stability of the boom once you put it in the place you need it to be in.

The ear pads are adjustable, so you can move them until you have the right fit. The headband has amazing padding as well as the speakers. So you could wear them the entire day and you’re not going to feel uncomfortable.

Another bonus about the product is that it has extra padding. This blocks out outside noise and allows you to focus and concentrate on what you’re doing. So it increases your productivity.

Throughout all of our reviews, we talk about the importance of warranties. This product comes with a two year warranty, which means that you can have the peace of mind that this product is going to work well for you and not give out when you need it to work the most.

Reviewers on Amazon.com enjoyed this product. Many of them gave the product a perfect five star rating. They constantly commented on how comfortable the headset was to wear, even for hours at a time. They also commented on how excellent the sound quality was and how clearly the microphone was able to transmit sound to the the person on the other side of the line.

#3 Bronze pick (3rd place): Logitech USB Headset Mono H650e

Logitech USB Headset Mono H650e

View it on Amazon for $44.44*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.

2016-bronze-awardWe decided on the Logitech USB Headset Mono H650e for our bronze product for a variety of reasons. You are going to see that it is reasonably priced and offers many features that other USB headsets on the market currently have.

One of the main reasons why you will want a headset with a microphone is in order to have a conversation with others or in order to record your voice. This model has laser tuned drivers with minimal distortion. This gives you a crystal-clear conversation or recording every single time it is used. There is no static, no disruption, and no need to ask the person on the other line to repeat what they said. These drivers are high quality, so there will be no confusion or frustration during conversations with others.

Another feature of the microphone is that it is noise canceling and unidirectional. Part of the problem that individuals have when trying to record their voice or have a conversation with others is background noise. When others are listening to you, all they will hear is your voice, not outside traffic, the kids playing, or neighborhood dogs barking.

So you see that others will hear you crystal-clear and you can record your voice well. But how about the headset? First, it is comfortable to wear. It has a padded headband and padded ear cups. You will not feel uncomfortable wearing this headset even if you have to use it for multiple hours at a time. It’s great if you are using a dictation program to work, you spend long hours on the phone speaking with clients, or you simply use it to have conversations with friends and families in other places. It also has a built-in equalizer.

This Logitech model has been optimized for Microsoft Lync 2010. This means that you will be able to capitalize on a unified communications as well as teleconferencing. It is also user-friendly and delivers enterprise quality audio. One unique feature is its LED light that tells you when there is an incoming call. This minimizes interruptions during a meeting or a business call.

You will find that it is compatible with all leading UC platforms and has in-line control for muting the microphone, adjusting the volume, and for ending or answering phone calls when using the Microsoft Lync program. It is a light headset.

So what do real users have to say about our bronze pick? We were impressed that more than 100 individuals have reviewed the product on Amazon. Over 50 percent of the reviewers gave this headset a perfect rating. Overall, it has a 4.3 out of five star rating.

One individual who rated this product said that it is great for business use. They said that when they were looking around for a headset, they wanted to find one that could be used for multiple hours without getting uncomfortable. They said that they felt that this model met all the criteria for a work headset and was proof that the manufacturer of the product really understood what their customers would need. They like the fact that it had a padded headband and ear pads and that it has USB connectivity without needing any additional software. They liked the quality of the sound.

We think that you will be just as pleased as many of the other Amazon reviewers were with this product. Just as one individual mentioned, it may be the best headset you will ever try.

#4 Budget pick (Best cheap):  Logitech H390 ClearChat Comfort USB Headset 

 Logitech H390 ClearChat Comfort USB Headset 

View it on Amazon for -*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.

2016-cheap-budget-pickWe are really excited to review our budget product. In addition to being extremely affordable, this is just a high quality product. It offers a variety of nice features and is perfect for individuals who use need a headset for work or personal use.

One of the first things that you will notice when you look at the product or if you have the opportunity to try it on is that it is comfortable. If you have to use this for long conversations while working, your head and ears will not get uncomfortable. The ear pads and headband are nicely padded.

But the real question is, how well does it function and what features does it offer? First, let’s look at the microphone. It has a rotating microphone, which means that you can adjust it depending on the reason you are using it. It can easily flip up, getting out of the way when you do not need the microphone part. Also, it is noise canceling. This is something that is especially nice if you work from home. You will be able to project professionalism to your clients even though you may have normal household background noise. Your clients will only hear you speaking, instead of hearing the dishwasher or wash machine buzzing in the background.

It is an advanced digital USB headset. It is compatible with a variety of platforms, including Windows 2000, Windows 7, Windows 10, Windows Vista, and Mac OS X. All you need to do is plug in the USB into your computer, set up will begin, and then you will be able to use it. It’s as easy as that.

Another nice feature is its in line volume and mute controls. When you are wearing the headset, the control hangs about hip level. This means that you will be able to hit the mute quickly or increase or decrease the volume at just a moments notice. This black headset weighs about a half a pound, and its dimensions are 10.24 inches x 3.23 inches x 8.35 inches.

In all the reviews that we have done, we do not regularly see products on Amazon reaching more than a couple of hundred reviews. This product has an impressive 2,855 reviews. Overall, individuals who have used this product have given it a 4.1 out of five star rating. More than 50 percent rated the product with a perfect score.

Some of the reviews were very simple, with individuals mentioning that it is useful, has good sound quality, was great for the money, and was built to last. One individual said that they have used it while learning another language. They like the fact that it was comfortable to use and could hear phrases in the other language perfectly. Overall, individuals were impressed with the price of this high quality product.

Even though the vast majority of individuals were happy with the product, especially for its price, many people felt that they may have been happier purchasing something that was a little bit more expensive and of better quality. Some noticed that the ear pads fell off after just a couple of uses, and other people said that they had a bad USB connection.


Pre-purchase considerations

Price

While price is not the most important feature, it is usually the feature that most people turn to when determining whether or not to buy a product. This could be problematic when talking about USB headsets. There are some very inexpensive models for sale, but in the vast majority of instances you will only get what you pay for. Do not expect to spend $10 on a USB headset and get something that is on par with the gold product we’ve reviewed.

how does it function?

If you’re going to invest in a nice headset, don’t get something that does not do everything you need it to do. For example, is it better for you to have a wireless USB headset or a wired one? The answer to this question is going to depend on how much mobility you need. Another question to ask is, do you want the unit to have one or two speakers? If you just have one ear headset, you have the ability to better hear what is going on around you. However, if your goal is to block out outside noise and to simply focus on what you are listening to, then you’re going to want to have one with speakers for both ears.

Performance

You want a headset that performs well. In most cases, you want one that can transmit and receive the vocal range that the human voice can produce well. Additionally, you need to have a mic that has noise canceling features. Headsets of this type usually have directional mics, so you will need to position the boom adequately in order for it to work.

Features

Just like any other piece of technology, your headset can come with a wide range of features. The features that you select will depend a lot on how you plan on using the headset.

compatible with your hardware

This basically means how well the headset will work with the devices you want to use it with. For example, if you purchase a USB headset, it may not be compatible with your smartphone. The only way that you can use it with your smart phone is if it offers Bluetooth connectivity. While you do not want to purchase a headset that has more features than you need, the absolute last thing that you want is to spend money on a product and realize that some of the features you need are simply not available.

durability

Headsets take a lot of abuse. We are constantly knocking them off our desk, throwing them off our head in frustration, stepping on the cord, snagging the cord in our desk, and submitting them to all sorts of abuse. So make sure you purchase a product that has been proven durable. The longer the warranty the product has, the better.

Conclusion (Wrapping it up)

Technology has had a powerful effect on our lives. The ability that we have to communicate with each other over wide distances has made the earth seem like it is a lot smaller place. USB headsets have played a vital role in this. Our hope is that our review has given you a brief idea of the products that are available, as well as helped you understand what to look for when you are shopping for the best headset.

Discussion and comments

We want to know what you think. Do you own any of the products we discussed? Which did you buy and how did it work out for you?

Do you know of an even better product?

Comment below and help your fellow consumers make the right choice. Over to you!

Resources

  1. Chris Shao, Review: Logitech Clear Chat Comfort USB Headset H390, www.youtube.com, September 5, 2011
  2. Merritt Communications, Logitech H650e USB Headset Review, www.youtube.com, September 24, 2013
  3. Samara Lynn, Logitech USB Headset Stereo H650e, http://www.pcmag.com/, August 19, 2013
  4. Here It, Acoustic Shock, www.hear-it.org, 2016
  5. NFON, USB Headset, www.nfon.com, 2016
  6. VoIP Supply, Jabra BIZ 2400 Duo MS, http://www.voipsupply.com,2016

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