At long last I’ve purchased a Polycom VVX-500 for my desk. A year ago I participated in the beta program for this outstanding desk phone. A such I’ve had one to use well before they launched in October 2011.
However, Polycom devices involved in a beta program ship with a boot loader that will only load beta firmware. Once the device was officially shipping and release firmware available I could not longer update the VVX in my possession. This wasn’t initially an issue, but when OnSIP started to support Polycom UC v4.0+ firmware with their provisioning server I thought it would be good to more completely integrate my desk phone with our OnSIP account.
I might like to review the VVX-500, but that seems a little weird. As I was involved in the beta program I was bound by the companies standard non-disclosure agreement during the period of the beta. Once the device launched various other people reviewed it. I’m not sure that it’s worth my time to commit to a full length review, but there are some items worth noting about the VVX-500. I can certainly point these out from time to time.
A mechanical lifter is a Flintstone-like approach to hook switch control by purely mechanical means. It literally lifts the handset to take the phone off-hook, replacing it down again to hang up the call. To me this is essentially a kind of telephony steam punk.
Moving to 21st century methods, an EHS cable allows some aspect of the headset to control the hook state of the phone electrically. That is, it allows you to answer or hang up a call using switching that’s built into the headset. This may be true with both wired and wireless headsets.
To be blunt, lifters and EHS cables just aren’t cheap. The few times that I’ve had to buy an EHS cable it cost in the $50 – $80 range. That’s a considerable price when compared to the cost of the headset or the desk phone itself.
At the time of the unfortunate incident I wasn’t exactly flush with cash so I decided to make due with the wired headset that came with my Galaxy Nexus. That headset has proven irksome. Last week I was compelled to order a new Plantronics Voyager Pro HD .
Occasionally manufacturers will provide sample gear for evaluation. While I might write a positive review about such a device, nothing underscores that opinion like spending from my own pocket to replace the when it’s lost. Such is the case with this headset.
Hopefully, in the coming week or two I can find some time to setup the Gigaset DX800A and find out if the VP HD handles HDVoice calls as well as the VP UC.
This version comes with the BUA200 USB BT dongle. It’s capable of HDVoice when used with the built-in BT radio on a similarly capable host. I was not able to get it to pass HDVoice to the BUA200 connected to a desktop. It also lacks A2DP, which means it’s great for voice calls but you cannot use it to listen to music or podcasts via your cell phone.
Even so, this is good price on a high-quality, HDVoice-capable BT headset that commanded $120+ not so long ago.
A few people have commented offline about my recent review of the Sennheiser DW Pro2 DECT headset. The major thrust of opinion seems to be that the DW Pro2 is simply unreasonably expensive. As I said in the review, that’s your call to make dear reader. However, such commentary has driven me to consider an alternative.