New Aliph Jawbone Prime Bluetooth Headset Claims “Orders Of Magnitude Better Noise Suppression” But Also $129.99 Price Tag
Following the success of Aliph’s previous “New Jawbone” headset (see my review) the company has now announced the forthcoming release of its latest generation Jawbone Prime – a headset that boasts to be “the best ever created”.
The main new technology features of the Jawbone PRIME include:
Superior NoiseAssasin 2.0
The Jawbone Prime claims to offer even better noise elimination than the previous generations. Version 2.0 of its patented military-grade technology apparently delivers “an order of magnitude” improvement in the noisiest environments – extracting even more ambient noise while keeping the user’s voice output as natural as possible.
Acoustic Voice Activity Detector (AVAD)
The new AVAD technology provides a provides a fail-safe mechanism when the Voice Activity Sensor (VAS) [the little clear button at the tip of the headset pictured above] doesn't touch your face. When the VAS is not touching the face, Jawbone PRIME performs as good as or better than any other noise cancelling headset. When the VAS touches the face, you get the turbo-boost to the NoiseAssassin performance.
Better Wind Performance
Considering how much the previous New Jawbone suffered in windy conditions Aliph focused its engineers on the task of completely eliminating the impact wind has on speech. By leveraging some innovative DSP techniques and Jawbone's proprietary Voice Activity Sensor (VAS) Aliph has implemented a wind solution that maintains award-winning design without having to apply a visually disruptive wind-sock or baffle to physically block the wind.
Aside from technology, Aliph clearly also continues to focus intently on great product design and the Jawbone PRIME is a great example of this. This latest headset introduces a unique undulating texture (detail above), crafted with high precision in 3-D to reflect the light, and give a sense of movement to the exterior surfaces.
Additionally, the design has also been enhanced by a slight indication in the shield's texture, a small tactile crease that indicates where the switch is located. The inside contours of the product follow the face in a perfectly comfortable manner, while new ergonomic earbuds have been refined to keep the Jawbone in place without an earloop for most wearers (an earloop is however provided in the box for those who prefer to use one + Wall Charger, USB Cable, 3 Earbuds, 3 New Fit Earbuds).
The Jawbone PRIME is offered in three basic colors (Black, Platinum, Coffee) as well as four EARCANDY Edition colors (Scarlet, Lilac, Lime and Yellow)
Overall, while I absolutely loved the 1st Generation Jawbone and was somewhat disappointed by the 2nd Generation New Jawbone (pictured above center) I have to say that this 3rd Generation Jawbone PRIME appears to answer many of the complaints that people had with the previous models:
- Even better noise cancellation
- Noise cancellation works even when VAS is not touching your jaw
- Performs extremely well under windy conditions
- Small, light & comfortable
- No need to wear earloop
- Improved tactile response for buttons
- Funky colors
- Stunning industrial design
Having said this, the three main drawbacks of the Jawbone Prime are that 1) its stated Talk Time is only 4.5 hours; 2) its MSRP is a rather rich $129.99 and 3) it uses a proprietary charger that drives me nuts. This means that I’ll have to think carefully before deciding to upgrade from my existing Jabra BT530 (see review) which offers a more solid 5.5 hours of Talk Time, a standard microUSB charging connector, excellent noise cancellation and costs just half as much as the Jawbone Prime.
Finally, since I haven’t yet had the opportunity to demo this headset properly here is a link where you’ll find a couple of rather impressive video demonstrations from Aliph that were recorded using a standard Bluetooth mobile phone over a national network (wihout any modifications to the original recorded sound quality).
Please note that the Jawbone PRIME will work with virtually all Bluetooth smartphones including the Treo, Centro, iPhone, BlackBerry and G1. Also, the official launch date of this headset is May 2nd priced at $129.99 but you can now find the Jawbone Prime in all our stores priced at only $119.95.
Separately, please take a moment to share your views on the use of Bluetooth headsets with your fellow Treonauts below:
Treonauts are always in their prime…