I've been doing quite a bit of work from home in the wee hours of the morning, on conference calls to fix various broken servers.
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Therefore, I needed to replace my cordless phone (which has a headset) with a regular headset, so I wasn't having to swap phones in the middle of the conference call.
After swapping phones three times in the last 48 hours, we finished the call and I drove over to Fry's Electronics to pick up a regular phone with a headset.
The only model I found on the shelf was the Plantronics Practica T50. I've got several devices made by Plantronics, including their M3000 Bluetooth Headset, so I figured "How could I go wrong with another Plantronics headset?"
Within ten minutes of plugging it in, I was on another conference call. Within five minutes of joining the call, I had to drop off to switch phones again. The Plantronics Practica T50 is fairly useless not only as a headset, but as a phone in general.
The volume control is movable from "inaudible" to "unintelligible." It's impossible to crank the volume up high enough to hear anyone on the other end. Additionally, the headset is an "earloop" that doesn't quite fit right, and makes it difficult to place the microphone such that the party on the other end can hear you.
Since the entire point of a headset phone is to make sure that you can hear the other parties, and they can hear you, this "phone" is useless.
The other missing piece is a "mute" button. People use headset phones so they can do other things while talking or listening, including typing on a server console, or grabbing a drink in the middle of a five-hour conference call.
Without a mute button, all you can do is put the call on "hold," which means you can't hear anything on the other end, either. Bad.
After a grand total of about five minutes of "real" use, I switched back to my cordless phone with the headset, put the other cordless handset into the charging cradle, muted the call so they couldn't hear me swearing at Plantronics, and I re-boxed the phone.
It's back on the shelf at Fry's already.