It was such a great relief when my employer sent me a Plantronics S12 headset to replace the broken one that I had been using for the last 7 years. If you’re in sales, I’m sure you can relate to the importance of being hands-free. In fact, if you’ve got any kind of job where you spend most of your time on a phone and typing on a computer, you know how important it is to have a good head-set. The S12 headset replaced my previous S10 model that I’ve used at work for the last 7 years.
I get a kick out of the sitcom show, The Office, but I can’t believe the sales reps on the show are talking on the phone without a headset. Doesn’t this make the show seem a little bit behind the times? We’ve been using headsets in our offices for at least 25-30 years. I think headset technology has improved immensely, even since the previous Plantronics one I was using. I’ve been in sales for 25 years and for the last 8 have been using a Plantronics headset. I realize that Plantronics is considered the consummate headset brand, but I cursed at my older headset more than I actually used it. My old headset was a Wired Plantronics S10A. Mechanically and functionally, the S10A looks almost identical to the new S12 that I’m using now. The difference is that the S12 actually works all the time and works well. Perhaps this is because the S10A is equipped with a couple of buttons that really are ambiguous. The Plantronics S12 lacks the Speak-Volume, Tone Dial and TxLevel switch of the S10A. I never liked the speak volume or tone button. Shouldn’t the headset just work like a regular handset? Do we ever have to set the volume and tone when talking into a regular phone receiver? Obviously, not. This new headset does exactly what it is supposed to do: It worked on the very first try and continues to work consistently on every telephone call. Maybe my old S10A was a lemon; or maybe it had too many unnecessary buttons, but I suffered with that headset for 7 years.
The S12 headset is like a breath of fresh air. I don’t even think about this headset. It just works seemingly like I would expect a phone to work. Like the S10A, there are 6 channels on the left hand side. I kept this setting on channel 1 from the very beginning and it has worked flawlessly. In addition to the channel setting, there is a volume button, mute-toggle button and headset/handset toggle button – that’s it. The buttons on the S12 are nice and big with a green LED light above the handset toggle and a button that lights up red when the mute button is depressed. Warning: When you’re using the handset, the mute button doesn’t work – so don’t be throwing f-bombs and profanities at your boss during sales meetings with the headset. One feature the Plantronics S12 has that my old, S10A didn’t: The mouthpiece on the S12 has a red, flashing LED when you’re on the phone, letting your co-workers know when it is not a good time to start a conversation about their long weekend or how they drank too much the night before. Features aside, I’ve been told what really sets Plantronics headsets apart from the competition is conversation quality. Based on my experience with the S12, I’m inclined to believe this claim. The clarity of the voice on the other end is crystal clear and I have not had one complaint about what the listener hears either. S12 headsets are identical to the S10. They can be used in one of two ways: with the ear hook that glides over your listening ear or with the head-band. I much prefer using the head band. It is both more stable and more comfortable. It would drive me crazy trying to get the single ear piece adjusted just right every time I pick up the head set. The band that fits over your head is not even noticeable. It’s just right. I would give the Plantronics S12 almost a perfect rating if it was wireless. I’m sure you can’t get a decent wireless headset anywhere close to to the kind of money my employer paid for my Plantronics S12. I’m satisfied with the unit in every way imaginable. If you’re looking for an affordable, wired headset, I highly recommend the S12 for your next headset.