Plantronics BackBeat Sense review

Plantronics deserves more attention than it gets, but without a rapper to throw up gang signs or a sports-ball star to wear them around their neck it can tough to boost the cool factor in an oversaturated market.

That’s a shame, as the Senses really are at the top of their game.

We’ve previously looked at the amazing BackBeat Pro and the Sense are essentially those, but shrinkified into a super lightweight, on-ear version, and at only 140 grams with memory foam cushions and a slung, auto-adjusting headband, comfort is a clear focus.

The left can features the audio play/pause/skip controls, volume adjust and an OpenMic button that lets you hear your surroundings while still wearing the headphones. And on the right side is the power switch, USB charge connection, 3.5mm jack (in the event the battery actually runs dry — probably the apocalypse) plus a big button on the side to answer calls.

We found chatting nice and clear indoors, but heading outside traffic ruckus tended to compete with clarity. It helps that there’s a mic in both left and right cans, but they’re not really recommended for lengthy calls.

Music reproduction, on the other hand, is superb, with the little 32mm drivers packing a surprising amount of punch on the lower-end and clarity through the range. Don’t get too carried away with the volume though, as they do tend to leak a lot at the upper limits.

Plantronics boasts a battery life of up to 18 hours, and there’s a ‘deep sleep’ mode which senses when the device hasn’t been used for a while (like over the weekend when you’re not commuting to the office) and hibernates them until they’re switched on again.

Plus, there’s an automatic play and pause function when you take them off, which can further extend battery life.

At this pricepoint, there’re very few wireless Bluetooth headphones we could recommend above the Sense.

Price: $249
From: Plantronics

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

  • together with the tiny 32mm drivers packing a surprising quantity of punch around the lower-end and clarity via the range. Don’t get as well carried away with all the volume though