Some people use their music earphones, earbuds, some people do not use a specific set of headphones or microphone, just what is built into their PC/phone/laptop and some use a dedicated headset. I have used all of the above and to be honest never thought much about it given that I couldn’t hear what was heard on the other end.
After Dell sent me their Premier Wireless ANC headset to test out, I figured I should give it a decent test and compare it with all the other options I had available.
How does it feel on the head?
First of all, no matter how good a headset and mic sounds, if they are too uncomfortable to be worn then they are useless. The Dell headset is extremely lightweight and basic in design making it very comfortable. The overhead band is a soft band of cloth only with them mostly held onto the head using the earcups. The earcups sit on the ear and are extremely well padded such that you barely even know it is on.
I wore it for a lecture that went for two hours and didn’t feel a single annoyance from them on my head the entire time — and my head was not hurting when I removed them at the end.
The headphones can be worn with the microphone on either ear with it able to swing to either side of the earphone to allow left or right operation. The non-microphone earcup also has call controls while the microphone earcup has the ANC and Bluetooth controls along with a mute button located on the microphone arm.
How does it sound?
My son was the first to test these out for me and he gave me a massive two thumbs down which I thought was strange. This was with the headset connected to the PC using the PC’s Bluetooth connection. As with many of these dedicated headsets Dell has included their own Bluetooth dongle to pair the headset to your PC.
After hearing how bad the headset was using the PC’s Bluetooth I connected to it using Dell’s Bluetooth dongle. The difference was night and day. The audio, at first sounded a tad muffled — with ANC turned on. The more I listened to it the better it sounded though. The voice was crisp and clear while at the same time not adding any form of interference to the recording.
Of course, I then compared it with an EPOS Sennheiser headset (with and without their USB dongle) along with some Bose NC700 headphones and a Yeti Blue microphone. To say I was surprised is an understatement. The Dell, when connected using the Dell dongle, sounded the best, followed by the EPOS or the Yeti but the Dell had that subtle intonation of the voice captured well without any extraneous noise. You can hear the wave file below. Before each narration is a quick introduction naming the device about to be used.
Nothing special to speak of here but they are certainly good enough for a video meeting. You wouldn’t be using them for high fidelity music playback though.
The headphones are charged using either the charging stand or just a standard microUSB connection.
I never thought I needed a dedicated headset with a microphone but after using the Dell Premier Wireless ANC headset I have to rethink that. I also need to go back over all of my recorded lectures and think about re-recording them with this improved audio.
In this new world of so many video conferences and online meetings it is important that you can not only hear the other end of the conversation, but they can also hear you clearly. The Dell Premier Wireless ANC headset can help you accomplish that — and better than I ever thought they would. They do not look like a high-end headset but they sure perform like one.
This Microsoft Teams and Zoom certified headset is not cheap though and is priced currently at $370. I personally think it is worth it if you are on video calls and conferences a lot and if used for work it is of course a tax deduction.