Plantronics BackBeat SENSE
The Plantronics on-ears headphones may look wiry and uninviting, but it’s a different story once it’s on your head. The headset uses a plastic frame, encasing the elastic band and aluminum frame that holds the headphones together. The leatherette headband wraps the elastric band that’s built onto the arms of the headphone, and this allows you to wear the headphones at your desired height without letting the aluminum frame bump against your head. With no cold, hard metal in contact with your head, the Plantronics BackBeat SENSE feels very comfortable. The leatherette earcups come with memory foam within, and it hugs the ears gently when worn.
Quirky design aside, the Plantronics BackBeat SENSE has a strong suite of features that makes it stand out amongst its peers. The BackBeat SENSE can be paired with two devices simultaneously – you can be listening to songs via your tablet, and it can pick up calls from a separate smartphone. It also comes with automatic pause/play; removing or putting on the headphones will prompt the current track to pause and play respectively. Pressing the red button below the left cup pauses the current song while the in-built microphone plays ambient noise back, allowing you to hear your immediate surroundings. It even works with the Plantronics Find MyHeadset mobile app, just in case you misplace your BackBeat Sense. Wonderful, practical features aside, the cups are only rotatable, and not foldable. That is a minor flaw considering that the device itself is very light and thin, with a detachable 3.5mm audio cable for easier portability in its stylish soft pouch.
It has a balanced sound signature, with good control and depth – BackBeat Sense plays each instrument without muddying them together. This is most obvious in electronica tracks, like our test tune Elements of Life by Tiesto, where various electronic instruments are at play and the Plantronics headphone was able to keep them separated.
It is also good for R&B songs like Adele’s ‘Melt My Heart to Stone’, which balances well between vocals and strings, with a tight bass. As a whole, you can expect a spacious soundstage, with its strength in achieving great clarity between instruments.