If you’re someone who works in an office, or maybe someone who makes their living on the road, like those who drive a truck, sell real estate, or are sales road warriors, one thing is for sure, you need to communicate.
You need to communicate with your management, your team, your customers, and others. And when you do, you need to sound good, and you want to be comfortable when you are communicating. That’s where a good headset comes in, but not all headsets sound good, or are comfortable, and for that matter, affordable.
Levn LE-HS010 Review Video
First off, this is a Bluetooth wireless headset that’s worn over the head, and covers one ear. So, for those of you who like having one ear open to hear your surroundings, then this headset style fits right in. But, for anyone who doesn’t like to be distracted by sounds going on in the background, a
double ear model would be better. Unfortunately, that’s not an option, because the mono, single ear speaker is how it comes.
What does this headset connect to?
The LE-HS010 is designed to work with computers and mobile devices. It connects to computers by Bluetooth, or through the included USB Adapter. And though an Adapter is included, it won’t provide you with remote call answering, or visual mute status.
For those features, the headset needs to be optimized, and compatible with UC platforms such as Microsoft Teams, RingCentral, Dialpad, 8X8 and others.
This headset can be used with those platforms, but you just won’t have the remote call answering and visual mute status.
Connecting to a mobile device is done wirelessly through Bluetooth as you’d expect, and this headset uses Bluetooth version 5.1 which is only one click back from the most recent 5.2 version.
Normally significant changes occur when Bluetooth versions go from one number to another, such as from 4.0 to 5.0 for example. The ones that take place in between, such as from 5.0 to 5.1 are more minor. So by this headset having a Bluetooth release that’s one click back from the newest, doesn’t mean much.
Noise Canceling Microphone & Sound Quality
The Levn LE-HS010 comes with a noise canceling microphone that the manufacturer states as being Ai based, and capable of removing 99.9% of unwanted background noise. To date, I’ve never seen a headset provider make a claim of removing this much background noise.
In fact, it’s rare to see a noise reduction percentage claim at all, with Jabra being a recent exception at a claim of removing 80%. Personally, I’m skeptical at this 99.9% based on my decades of headset experience, but keep reading to find out if this headset in fact removed that much noise as it promises, or if it was an abject failure. We put it to the test and the results of those tests are coming up.
When we test headset microphones we’re looking to see how they perform in these three key areas:
- How the microphone sounds. In other words, what kind of voice sound quality do you get when speaking. Do you sound loud and clear? Rich, or tinny?
- We also look at how well it removes background noise. With loud background noise being thrown at it, how well does it do to remove it? How much of it do you hear? 50%, 60%, 10%?
- And finally, how well the voice sound quality is maintained while the microphone wrestles with that background noise. This is important because if there’s background noise going on in your background, reducing that sound is important, but equally important is whether or not your voice quality is compromised in the process.
How did the Levn LE-HS101 do in our sound tests?
Well, I have to give some credit where credit is due. The voice sound quality was decent, but don’t confuse that into thinking it sounded great, because it didn’t. But, to me, it sounded good enough for anyone to use on a business call. Not great, not bad, but honestly, good enough. And, at this price point, I have to say that it sounded better than what I was expecting.
As for the noise canceling microphone that promises 99.9% noise reduction. I’m not buying it. Did it remove a good amount of background noise? Absolutely, but clearly not as much as is being promised, Ai or no Ai, it’s not extracting that much unwanted sound.
I can’t state exactly how much background noise it reduced because I don’t have any way of measuring that. But, if I were to venture a guess, I’d estimate that it removed about 60%, but again that’s just a guess on my part.
That takes me to voice sound quality when the microphone was dealing with background noise. Here it struggled. Yes, you could hear the voice without too much trouble, but it was very evident that the voice sound quality was compromised during times when background noise was present.
I’ve heard many headsets that sound better, but it’s important to keep in mind that this is a cheap headset, and with that in mind, it did a decent job.
Would I place this among the top tier of sound quality, and noise reduction? No, but as I said, it’s good enough, and for the money, better than what I thought you’d get. With this in mind, you should expect to be heard clearly, and a bit less clearly when there’s distracting background noise. Though as I stated earlier, if no background noise is present, the microphone sound quality is acceptable, and reasonable to use on business calls.
And while I’m on the subject of the microphone, it can be muted, but only when using the headset with a mobile phone. Apparently the mute feature doesn’t work if using your computer.
The last thing on mute, that’s been reported by some online reviewers, is the presence of a continuous beep tone in the headset earpiece when the mute feature is activated. Most comments were along the lines of frustration, and in some cases, led to returning the headset.
The continuous beep tone is to provide you with an audible alert to keep you reminded that your microphone is off. But as I mentioned, this tone is annoying to a lot of people. Poly has used this same approach in some past headsets, and I can’t recall that ever being an issue.
I think it’s because the beep tone that Poly has used is very subtle, and is really in the background. Based on the online comments, it sounds like the Levn tone is louder, which no doubt has led to the user frustration.
Battery and Talk Time
This is a wireless headset, and because of that, the amount of talk time is something that can be very important to a lot of people, especially if you’re someone who’s on the road a lot, or consider yourself to be a power user.
The Levn LE-HS010 provides a lot of battery power at 35 hours. For a budget priced headset, I wouldn’t have expected to get this much talk time. So, if a cheaply priced headset with a ton of talk time is what you’re looking for, then this headset should be one for you to seriously consider.
You can recharge the battery through the included USB C cable, or, opt for the optional charging stand that serves to not only dock the headset, but recharge the battery. Either way, you have the choice, and by adding the charging stand, it raises the price from $35.00, to $75.00 which still keeps this headset in the cheaper range.
Being that this headset doesn’t have a wire, it would be easy to wonder how far you can go to walk, talk, or listen.
Well, the answer to that question is a disappointing 30 feet. The typical wireless range you find on most Bluetooth headsets is 100 feet, with some reaching as much as 300 feet. So that puts the Levn LE-HS010 on the extreme low side of the wireless range scale.
When you figure that true wireless range is generally about half of the stated wireless range, then you end up with a mere 15 feet. This is enough to move freely around your desk area, but not enough to move much beyond that.
And as much as I feel an urge to be critical here, I have to show some restraint because I need to remind myself that this is a very cheaply priced headset. Economy headsets aren’t really supposed to come with premium features, and long wireless range could be considered that.
Is this a headset that I would highly recommend? Not exactly. But then again, it could be a perfect headset for someone if the headset criteria is:
- low cost
- Acceptable sound quality
- Noise canceling microphone
- Good battery life
- And a USB Adapter for computer use
If these were the buying parameters, then the Levn LE-HS010 could be a headset to seriously consider.
I don’t like the cheap feel when wearing it, though it is lightweight and comfortable enough. The microphone can be placed on the right or left side which is something you don’t get on some headsets, even models that cost much more.
Though the sound isn’t what I’d call premium, it’s good enough for use on business calls. I’m personally not buying the claim of 99.9% noise reduction based on our in-house tests, and as I mentioned earlier, the microphone voice quality was negatively affected when the microphone was working to reduce background noise.
Lastly, I would place a giant question mark after this headset for durability, and ability to hold up over time, and then of course there’s consistency. Will it maintain its level of sound quality over time. For the price, I’d have to wonder. But even if it didn’t hold up, you’re only paying $35.00, so it’s not unreasonable to just replace it with a new one.
I don’t think you risk much by giving this headset a try. The worst case is you’ll be disappointed, and out $35.00, which isn’t really a risk at all.
Not what you’re looking for, need a recommendation or some help?
Maybe the Levn LE-HS010 isn’t what you’re looking for. Or maybe you have a headset question, or need some help getting your headsets set up (even if you purchased them somewhere else). If so, we can help. Contact us today.