Plantronics BackBeat 906 Review

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It might be quite absurd to find a noted Bluetooth single-ear headset maker in the list of best noise cancelling headphones. While Plantronics has always been at the forefront of the (somewhat cyborg-ish) single ear Bluetooth headsets, it has not been seen on the speaker market as clearly as, say Altec Lansing. Hey, wait a …

Ratings

Sound Quality Rating
Build Quality Rating
Comfort Rating

Overall Rating

3.3 out of 5

3.3

It might be quite absurd to find a noted Bluetooth single-ear headset maker in the list of best noise cancelling headphones. While Plantronics has always been at the forefront of the (somewhat cyborg-ish) single ear Bluetooth headsets, it has not been seen on the speaker market as clearly as, say Altec Lansing. Hey, wait a minute, did you say Altec Lansing? Why, these specific headphones have been made by Altec Lansing as well! How is that possible? Plantronics acquired Altec Lansing, that’s how.

Thus, the Plantronics BackBeat 906 headphones are not just your average run of the mill Bluetooth headsets. These are also in the running for the best in ear headphones as well. Powered by 14mm drivers manufactured with Altec Lansing’s expertise and the great Bluetooth reception and microphonics developed by Plantronics, these earphones are the beautiful progeny of a wonderful marriage.

The sound quality on these is exceptionally clear with the signature Altec Lansing bass thumping your ears with mellifluous midrange frequency response. These are premier headphones, make no mistake, but they are definitely not what audiophiles would call “passable”.

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  • Features
  • Specifications
  • Sound
  • Wirelessly listen to music from a Bluetooth enabled phone or use the Bluetooth adapter to stream music wirelessly from devices without Bluetooth support
  • Exceptionally clear audio and call quality with the marriage of Altec Lansing speakers and Plantronics’ dual mics on the headphones
  • Remotely control your music with the remote controls provided with the headset
  • OpenMic technology that allows you to converse with neighbors without taking off your headset with the push of a button
  • AudioIQ noise cancelling technology for noise free music

WHAT'S IN THE BOX

  • Plantronics BackBeat 906 Headphones
  • Bluetooth adapter with a 3.5mm jack
  • AC Charger

UNBOXING VIDEO

  • Design

    The BackBeat 906 consists of two earpieces connected by an 8 inch flexible rubber cable that goes behind the wearer’s neck, much like the Motorola S9 or Jaybirds. The headphones fit into the ear canal with the help of asymmetric silicone sleeves that also help with the acoustic seal. These look formidable, but are actually quite lightweight and meld into your skin after a little bit of time getting used to them.

  • Warranty1 Yr Limited Warranty
  • Dimensions5.5 x 2.3 x 9.5"
  • Weight0.32 lb
  • Cable LengthN/A
  • BatteryYes
  • Battery Life8 Hrs
  • MicYes
  • BluetoothYes
  • WirelessYes
  • Build Quality

    Tough rubber coated ‘phones means that these are quite well built and can withstand some rough handling.

  • Comfort

    The non-adjustable cord that runs behind the neck as well as the pressure of the earphones behind the ear may not be suited for extended use.

  • Highs

    Sparkly highs with good clarity – not audiophile grade at all, though.

  • Mids

    Well rounded midrange response, considering that these are also made for speaking.

  • Lows

    Thumping bass, but no definition and tended to be muddy.

  • Noise Reduction

    The noise reduction with AudioIQ technology is quite decent, but not exceptional. These are made for light urban sprawls, not air-plane engines.

  • Performance

    These cans strike a great balance between call quality, sound quality and comfort. But they do not excel in each of these areas.

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PROS

  • Great sound reproduction with 14mm drivers
  • OpenMic technology allows you to listen to your surroundings without taking off your headset
  • Lightweight and flexible fit
  • Dual mics for talking over the phone with exceptional clarity

CONS

  • Behind-the-ear hugging design may not be very comfortable for extended wear
  • Acoustic seal might be questionable because of the open earpiece
  • Current price is quiet high

Verdict

The Plantronics BackBeat 906 headphones are quite snazzy to look at, perform well enough with all kinds of music despite being a pair of ‘phones made for talking and calling. If mobility is your prime concern, these are the phones for you, but if you require exceptional audio quality, then these should not be your first choice at all.

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