When you use a UC (Unified Communications) application, you have the freedom of using your mobile phone or computer softphone application. So, if you're on the go in places regularly that are loud, you'll have a noise canceling headset for both your office and on the go.
The Plantronics Blackwire C325 would be your entry level wired headset that will connect with both your computer, and mobile phone via 3.5mm connection. The ear cushions are leatherette and the headband is adjustable. With dual speakers and a noise canceling microphone, your call center agents will be able to zone in on your callers, but if you're in an extremely loud office environment, being that this headset doesn't fully enclose your ears, you'll want to consider a different model.
"I work from home and am on the phone all day and i love this headset. Big "plus" that it can plug directly to a cell phone. The sound quality is excellent, the recipient can hear my voice clear, and if there is music/noise in the background when i speak it cancels out the sound very well."
The Plantronics Blackwire C5220 will be an upgrade to the Blackwire C325 with larger more padded ear cushions, and an extremely comfortable headband cushion. In addition, you'll be able to connect with your mobile phones via 3.5mm and USB for your computer softphones as well. If you need USB-A or USB-C, the Blackwire 5200 series comes in both variants depending on your needs.
"There must have been a half dozen headsets I tried including Sennheiser. This is the product that doesn't cause me ear aches and is easy to use. I am using this with a Samsung Galaxy S7. Actually I have two of these - for home and in my travel bag. The $20-30 mobile phone headsets I tried were all too low of quality and resulted in ear aches and poor sound / microphone."
The Sennheiser SC 75 USB is comparable to the Plantronics series of 3.5mm and USB wired headsets. With the SC 75 USB, you'll be able to choose between leatherette and foam cushions for a perfect fit. In addition, a bendable noise canceling microphone boom with HD audio, you'll be able to hear and be heard crystal clear. Like the other Plantronics models, the Sennheiser SC 75 USB doesn't fully enclose your ears, so in high noise call center environments this still may not be the best headset choice. For low to moderate noise call centers, the SC 75 USB is a choice to consider.
"I ordered this headset for business purposes to keep my hands free. The sound quality is crisp and clear, it plugs directly into your phone easily. It is also very comfortable to wear, your ears are protected and nicely cushioned. This is the BEST headset, hands down!"
Jabra Evolve 80 is a heavy duty wired headset that will connect with both your mobile phone and computer. With enlarged ear cushions and a cushioned headband, the Jabra Evolve 80 will fully enclose your ears and has ANC (Active Noise Cancellation) for you to zone in on your music or phone calls. This headset truly does block out all your background noise in your office. The downside of the Jabra Evolve 80 is over long periods of time, this headset will get very uncomfortable and the microphone isn't noise canceling. Meaning, if you want this headset for phone calls, although it will block the background noise in your office, callers are going to hear just about everything happening around you.
"I absolutely love these headphones. i work in a call center with two rows of cubes facing each other and we have short walls. it get very loud! these headphones have been the best thing i could have done for myself. I no longer get lost in conversations, and it allows me to concentrate better. they are a little heavy and and tight, but hoping they loosen up over time. I haven’t listened to any of my calls since using these i’m not sure how the mic quality is, but i feel like my conversations go smoother in general. Worth every penny!"
The Plantronics Voyager 4220 UC is a professional grade noise canceling wireless headset built for professionals. Dual speakers, with a noise canceling microphone and wideband audio is going to ensure you can hear and be heard crystal clear. The added benefit you have with a wireless headset in your office, is the freedom to get up from your desk and step away from all the noise around you! That's going to help call center agents be more productive, happy and provide a better experience for callers on the other end. Lastly, the Plantronics Voyager 4220 UC was built very well to block out noise around you, but doesn't have cushions that fully enclose your ears. So, depending on the level of noise in your office will depend if the Voyager 4220 UC is a fit for you.
"I like this headset very much! The noise canceling is excellent. I tested it by calling someone on my team and playing Freebird as loud as it would go on my iPhone. She could only hear my voice and it was crystal clear. I had several calls over the next week where they were doing construction adjacent to my cube and nobody heard any of it."
For high noise call environments, the Sennheiser MB 660 UC is a perfect noise canceling headset in your call center. Whether you're on moderate calls or need to zone in on music with your mobile phone or computer, the MB 660 UC fully encloses your ears and has Active Noise Cancellation. Put these headphones on and you'll step into a new world blocking out all the background noise with a smile on your face! Although the MB 660 UC doesn't have a microphone boom, there's a microphone built into the headset that allows callers to focus on your voice, which is surprisingly better than you'd think.
"These headphones outperformed my expectations! Working in a growing company we had to double and triple up on cubes until our new building was ready - so all these people in a small area got too noisy to have a phone conversation or even think. These worked amazing and eliminated most of the surrounding sound- and are very comfortable. And they work great on a plane too!!!"
The Plantronics Voyager Focus UC will be comparable to the voyager 4220 UC, but this model has active noise cancellation and a charging base. So, if you prefer having a charging base to place your headset in at the end of the day, the Voyager Focus UC is a model to consider. Out of the box, like the other models, you'll also be able to connect with your computer or mobile phone if you're ever on the go. In addition, you're covered with a noise canceling microphone and wideband audio to hear and be heard crystal clear. The Voyager Focus UC should work for most call center environments, but again if you're in an extremely noisy office, you still may need a noise canceling headset that's more heavy duty to fully enclose your ears.
"These aren't cheap but you get what you pay for. I've had several pairs of expensive headphones including other plantronics and bose. So far these are doing a great job of both music and phone. I recently started working from home, i needed a good headset to use with jabber and other voip applications. So far call quality has been great and music has been great also. The controls are great also, easy to use for sure. So far i've only been using 2 days. One of the coolest features is when you take the headphones off your head, they know it and pause your music."
Making Sense of Noise Canceling Headsets for Call Centers
If you're wondering whether noise canceling headsets are night for your call center, it's important to know that noise cancelation actually refers to two different technologies.
The first was introduced decades ago, and it has more to do with silencing background noise for the other end of the line. Either through software or hardware, if a voice isn't detected, the call would be reduced in volume or muted completely via technology known as a noise gate. This allows the voice to be heard clearly during communication, but it put a stop to warbly or washy background sounds when the other side of the line speaks, reducing annoying and disruptive sounds.
On the other hand, more modern noise canceling headsets for call centers are intended to reduce background noise for the wearer, allowing them to hear the other end more clearly in high-noise environments such as a room full of people taking and making calls all day. Call center headsets that are noise canceling are best at giving the wearer a quieter experience even in loud environments, and they're often referred to as active noise canceling, as opposed to just noise canceling.
Both types of noise canceling headsets are great for call centers and the people that work in them day in and day out, but the good news is that active noise canceling headsets typically include both types of noise cancelation -- and, even if not, it's a lot easier to integrate noise canceling via software in the computer than it is to go the other way around without a complicated setup that includes external microphones to listen for and defeat ambient noise.
If you're having a hard time remembering which is which, just know that active noise canceling refers to the speakers in your headset, blocking out ambient noise so that the wearer can hear the line better. Regular noise canceling refers instead to the microphone, dropping the volume of the mic when speech isn't detected to reduce noise that the other end hears.
When using a UC application, being that a headset will be your main communication device, it's important to choose a model that's compatible, comfortable, sounds good and helps you block out the noise in your call center or office to increase productivity and avoid the annoying distractions of a noisy office. For more recommendations for other applications check out the ultimate guide to the best noise canceling headset for your call center 2020