Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2: Noise Canceling, Economy-Style

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– [Michael] Not everyone
wants to spend $350 on a pair of headphones, and
no one wants to do it twice. Take it from me. So if Bose is too rich for your blood but you still want active noise cancelling and a relatively portable package, Plantronics might just
have the set for you, so long as you can put up
with a few compromises. I'm Michael Fisher and this
is the Mr. Mobile review of the BackBeat PRO 2. Okay, so there's a lot
going on with this set, both functionally and in appearance. These aren't my favorite
headphones to gaze upon. Just on one hand, we've
got stippled matte plastic, textured silver plastic,
glossy black plastic that scratches really easily,
and this fake wood grain that feels as artificial as it looks. Now, if you pay a little more, you can get the special edition set
that's finished in silver and comes with a rigid carrying case.

I didn't take a look at those, but my friend Enobong
over at Booredatwork did. Check out his review if you want a slightly different take on these. But whether you get silver or earth tone, the BackBeat is big. Of the four headsets I have in the studio from different manufacturers, these definitely feel like the biggest. And the fact that they
don't fully articulate means you need more space in
your bag for 'em too. Fortunately, Plantronics has been in the audio business for a long time. They've built headsets that NASA used during the Apollo program,
so it knows audio. The BackBeat PRO 2 has
a nice even sound stage, neither drowning in base
nor ever getting shrill.

I had the opportunity to use them on a recent trip to China. That's 19 hours of flying,
spaced across two airplanes. Basically, the best noise
cancellation test ever. The active noise cancellation cuts out plane and train noise significantly. It isn't as good as the
ANC Bose uses on the QC35s, but then nothing is. Plantronics has also thrown in something called open listening. Flip the switch and you can
eavesdrop on your surroundings, or just turn off noise
canceling to save some battery. That said, you won't need to. Plantronics says these
are good for 24 hours and yeah, I got every bit of it. You can take these literally
halfway around the world on a single charge, listening
to them about 75% of the time without even hitting
a low battery warning.

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It's seriously impressive. Finally, there are some
familiar conveniences. If you don't wanna use
Bluetooth, you can plug these in with a three and a half millimeter cable and you can take calls in the headset too. One caller said I
sounded a little distant, but it didn't stop either of us from being clearly understood. Also, there's a dedicated mute
button here, which I love. In music mode, pull the headphones off and your song will pause. Put 'em back on and it'll
resume, most of the time. Same goes for the play,
pause and skip side buttons. They work most of the time.

My review sets, I had two of
them, were kind of flake-y and these features didn't always work. Also, the headset tended to
disconnect sort of randomly, so I assume there's something weird with the pre-release hardware
or software I tested. These are the problems
you wanna watch out for during your exchange period if you spring for an
actual retail version. If you do, you'll get a somewhat clunky,
slightly homely headset, but one with outstanding battery life and pretty okay noise
cancellation and sound for a lot less money than what they pay up in business class. There's a lot of headphones
in this video, folks, and I've reviewed most of them. Check 'em out at Mr.
Mobile's YouTube channel and if you dug this video, go ahead and subscribe while you're at it. Till next time, thanks for watching and stay mobile, my friends.

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