Plantronics 73646-01 Car Charger for Discovery 655 665

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Wears out quickly

Aug 12, 2008 (Updated Aug 12, 2008)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Comfortable
Great recharging options

Cons:Earpiece falls off
Device falls out of your ear in cold/dry weather

The Bottom Line: For the price it's OK as long as you're happy with a 6-8 month lifespan based on moderate use. I was hoping for more from Plantronics top-of-the-line model.


Got this for Christmas as it was highly reviewed by a magazine I read. I was very happy initially with the product, but within a month had reservations about it, which were confirmed when other issues developed.

I do love the fact that it comes with a sleeve that you can connect either to the provided lighter adapter, or that you can plug into your PC using the provided USB adapter. The fact that you don't have to buy additional gizmos to be able to charge at home or in your car is really nice.

It's also really light and easy to forget you have it in your ear. And if it ever falls, it's light enough that the impact doesn't make you cringe (too much).

Now, on to the bad:

Though I use the largest flexible earpiece provided, it's not really large enough for my ear - and I've never had a problem with other "in-the-ear" earpieces, so I wouldn't say I have an abnormally large ear opening. But the reason I say it's not large enough is in cold or dry weather (when my skin was less "sticky") the earpiece fell out repeatedly, forcing me to use the "over-the-ear" clip.

The swivel attachment for the earpiece (attaching it to headset) was nice and tight when I first got it, but after 5 months of use it was worn and no longer held its position... again forcing me to use the "over-the-ear" clip. And after 3 months of using the "over-the-ear" clip, even THAT has worn and the headset won't keep its position. I put the device in my ear so it's pointing at my mouth, and within a few minutes it's jiggled around and is pointing at my shoes. Both items have the same design flaw in that they are moving pieces by design, but are held in place by friction and therefore are going to wear and get loose with use. This is something that other reviewers have noted, and it's probably this device's major weakness.

The headset seems to pick up a lot of ambient noise - I have issues using it with voice dialing when in my vehicle (A/C on, but radio off, windows up) or if I am in anything other than a quiet setting. When on a call in a bar or a reasonably noisy environment I'm better off using the phone handset in most cases or else I can't hear the other person and they can't hear me.

Lastly, there is no good way to carry this thing if it's not in your ear. The carrying/charging sleeve has a shirt-pocket clip on it, but if you carry it clipped to your shirt or pants pocket (as one assumes was intended) then the sticky earpiece is exposed, and is very easy to knock off and lose. Somehow I have managed to find mine each time it fell off. So, I started carrying the device in my pants pocket. The earpiece invariably falls out of the headset while carrying, meaning that when your phone rings, you have to go fishing in your pocket for the earpiece and reassemble everything before you can take the call.

Note to the Plantronics designers: since this headset has a carrier, it would be nice if it shut itself off when in the carrier, or at least let phone calls go to the handset. When your phone rings you could either answer by handset, or pull the headset out of your pocket, remove it from the carrier, and then the call would be routed directly to the headset. Just a thought...

Overall, I'm glad to see that the price for these things has dropped to the $50-60 range. When I got mine, my wife probably spent upwards of $100 for it, and that's not a reasonable price to pay for a headset that has the issues that this one does.


Recommend this product? No

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