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Plantronics Discovery 640 Bluetooth Headset: Impressive

On average I test about two new Bluetooth headsets a month and typically I don’t even bother to review them because they tend to leave me fairly unimpressed.

However, this past week I had the opportunity to be pleasantly surprised and extremely impressed with the new ultra-light Plantronics Discovery 640 headset (now reduced to $89.95) pictured below.

The Plantronics Discovery 640 now definitely makes it to my list of top Bluetooth headsets alongside Palm’s Compact Wireless Headset ($59.95) and Sony Ericsson HBH 662 ($84.95) pictured below left and right respectively. 

Each of these headsets has unique features with Palm’s having the best overall value, Sony Ericsson’s the highest quality and now Plantronics’ the lightest and smallest of any BT headset at only 0.3oz/9gm.

The only two areas where the Discovery 640 comes up a little short is in Talk+Standby time and also its range which Plantronics claims is 33 feet but in my experience is closer to 11 feet.  In all other respects such as sound quality, build quality, fitting ease and comfort I had nothing but top marks to give this headset.

The complete accessories package that comes with the Discovery 640 is similarly impressive starting with an elegant aluminium case above (perfect as a gift) that conveniently holds everything except the wall charger.

Among the Discovery 640’s most innovative features is the the ability to recharge the headset using only an AAA battery with the included pocket charger pictured below (one battery is good for two full charges or 10 hours of talk time) which locks into a charging pocket that also acts as a carrying case.

Additionally, there are four adapters which allow you to use a Nokia, Siemens, Motorola or Sony Ericsson wall or car charger to power the headset.  Unfortunately Plantronics ‘forgot’ to make a similar adapter that could be used with the standard Palm charging connected for our Treo but I hope that they’ll think about doing this in the future.

Overall, if you’re looking for an ultra-light, high quality and innovative new BT headset you certainly won’t be disappointed with Plantronics’ Discovery 640.

Treonauts are always looking for new gear


Posted by Andrew on December 14, 2005 at 01:40 PM

Treo Accessories , Treo Bluetooth Headset

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Comments

26
by Ed | Oct 21, 2006 11:56:07 PM

I have a Palm 700p and a Plantronics 640. It works fine when I turn the headset on and use it right away. After about five minutes after a call the headset will go into a "sleep" mode, is that normal? It doesn't stay paired all the time? I can hear my phone ring and then turn on the headset to answer the call.

27
by Jason | Oct 29, 2006 11:42:03 AM

I have the same problem with my 640 and Treo 700p. It's paired and the phone will recognize the 640 when I turn on the 640, but after a couple of minutes, the phone screen sleeps (as it should) and it loses connection with the headset (that little headset icon switches back to the standard "bluetooth active" icon). Then it's impossible to use the headset unless you turn it completely off and completely on again. This generally causes me to miss calls while I'm trying to reconnect the headset. VERY frustrating.

Additionally, my wife's car is bluetooth equipped and never loses connection with my 700p, so I suspect this is a Plantronics issue.

Thoughts?

28
by Jerry | Dec 11, 2006 11:48:38 AM

I've had the Plantronics for about a year using the Treo 650 and it worked great (except for delay...headset picked up only after 2 rings). I recently got the Treo 700p and have had the same "sleep" issues. I talked to Plantronics support and they said it's an issue with Palm's bluetooth implementation and Palm is working on a fix but they (Plantronics) did not know the progress. I hope they have a fix soon because when it does work, it works even better than it did with my Treo 650. It picks up immediately with no delay like before.

Also, when it does go to sleep and I get a call. I will pick up the call and then press the button on the P640 and after a few seconds it will connect. It's a little annoying to do this especially when driving as I don't like to grab the phone and I don't like the delay but at least I've got a working headset.

29
by Tech | Dec 28, 2006 9:30:07 PM

I work for Plantronics Tech support. None of our Bluetooth headsets are compatible with the Treo 700 series, as stated by Jerry, even though they used to work fine with the Treo 650. Apparently, it has got to do with the firmware version of the Treo's Bluetooth adapter.

The only workaround for: delays, disconnection, static and distorted sound is to do a "Hard Reset" on the Treo (back up your info first!) and pair the Discovery 640 again. This should last a couple of months. After that, the issues may or may not reappear. Amazingly, we've had reports from customers who never had a single problem with the 700w and our products.

At this point I can tell you that Plantronics and Treo are working together to solve the issues.

Don't take this as an official statement from Plantronics, please :) I am just trying to help.

Cheers!

30
by Jerry | Feb 14, 2007 10:49:40 PM

I posted a couple months ago about having problems with my Treo 700p and the Plantronics 640 (see Jerry above). I talked to a guy from Palm and he said he had the Treo 700p with the Palm version of the Plantronics 640 known as the Palm Ultralight headset and it worked great for him. I didn't have the $99 to purchase this but mentioned it to my cousin who's been having problems with every BT headset he's tried on his 700p. Long story short...he bought it a few days ago and loves it!! It hasn't unpaired once and works as advertised. The only caveat is that it didn't come with a wall adapter, they expect you to use your Treo wall adapter, and it only comes with a charger adapter for the Treo and not Motorola, Nokia, etc like the Plantronics version. Otherwise it's the same thing but better...if you have a Treo 700p that is. Now I just need to cough up $99 =( http://store.palm.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2344158

31
by xax | Nov 30, 2007 3:06:49 PM

Ho acquistato il 640 da qualche giorno. Tutto ok con Treo 650!
Confermo anche la funzione Radial!
Basta un click e subito dopo il beep altro doppio click: richiama l'utlimo numero.
This forum is very good.
Thanks for your help (sorry for my english!!)

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