In this headset review, I’ll provide you with the details on what may very well be the most powerful, and versatile headset we’ve ever tested in the new Yealink BH71 wireless headset. And we test a lot of headsets, so that’s saying something.
Before we get into the details, here's a snipet about Yealink, the company behind the new BH71
Yealink is a company that’s well respected, and well-known for designing and manufacturing popular communication products such as phones, and audio-video gear. But within the last two years, they expanded into the business headset space and made quite a splash with innovative models such as the WH 67. But the subject of this blog is the new BH71 which represents the latest in Yealink's expanding business wireless headset line.
Short version - Long version, your choice
In this blog, you’ll first see our review video and a list of the key points of this new headset. But if you’re someone who wants more detail, I’ll also expand on these key features so you’ll get a broader, more detailed view. A sort of short version, long version approach.
For those who prefer watching content over reading it, here's our review video:
Yealink BH71 Review Video
The short version - BH71 highlights and where to buy.
- You have the choice of 4 different configurations to choose from
- The earpiece design is among the most popular of all time and it’s been improved; 10% lighter, adjustable earpiece, more talk time and a volume dial.
- You have the option to purchase the highly versatile unique workstation base
- You get up to 10 hours of talk time, 30 hours total through the portable charge case
- Compatibility with all the leading UC platforms including Teams integration.
- Earpiece can be taken on-the-go, unlike other similarly designed headsets
- The BH71 has a nice 3 inch interactive touchscreen that’s very responsive
- The workstation base features a Qi wireless charger for recharging mobile phones or the mobile charge case. The wireless charger can lay flat, or be positioned at a 90 degree angle.
- The headset can be adjusted directly through the base which eliminates the need to download software. Many companies prohibit employees from downloading software out of security concerns.
- The workstation base has a full duplex speakerphone for hands free conversations, collaboration with coworkers or when you don’t want to use the headset.
- The workstation base comes with 3 type A USB 3.0 ports for added versatility. Computers these days lack enough ports to plug our devices into. Having this built-in 3 port hub helps to solve that problem.
4 different configuration choices
We all work differently, and because of that our technology needs vary. The new Yealink BH71 gives you the choice of four different variants, each designed to work the way you do. Let's have a look at the different configurations.
BH71. Priced under $100.00. This configuration includes the BH71 earpiece, and a hard shell travel case. This particular case does not contain a battery for recharging the earpiece. Choosing this version makes sense for anyone who works on the go, and connects to devices via Bluetooth.
BH71 Pro. Priced under $200.00. The BH71 Pro comes with the earpiece, a hard shell case that includes a battery for recharging the headset, which provides up to 30 total hours of battery life. It also comes with the BT51 USB Adapter for using the earpiece with computers. The person who would select this version would likely be connecting to a laptop, and to a mobile device and regularly change work locations. Your typical Hybrid worker.
BT71 workstation. Priced in the mid $200’s. This configuration is designed for the office worker who doesn’t have a need for mobility. It comes with the earpiece, and the workstation base for direct connection to desk phones, computers and mobile devices.
BT71 workstation Pro. Priced less than $300.00. This is the configuration that has it all, and is the ultimate configuration for the high-end Hybrid worker. It comes with the workstation base for connecting to desk phones and computers, but it also comes with the BT51 USB Adapter and headset charging case for mobility. If you work in an office, but you also need a headset for your mobile phone, and a laptop for use on the go, this is the configuration for you.
Where to buy?
With as crazy cool as this headset is, a lot of people will probably be sold without seeing it, or even laying a finger on it. If that’s you, then here’s where you can pick one up for yourself. And I’m screaming from the mountaintop that you won’t be disappointed, because the BH71 is that good.
If you’re outfitting a team, we have special bulk order discounts available. To learn more about our bulk pricing program, just email us at email@example.com, or you can go to our contact us page, and one of our helpful Advisors will be happy to provide you with a quote.
Looking for more details on this new Yealink BH71? Here you go.
The long version - Starting with appearance, how it looks
I feel pretty confident in saying that most people would have a hard time thinking about a headset in terms of it being great looking. After all, we are talking about a headset, and they all pretty much look the same, right? Yes, and no, because this is one headset that could easily turn many into headset beauty believers, simply because this is one great looking headset.
But as with many things, beauty will only take you so far, because you need substance behind that great looking exterior. And I have to say that the Yealink BH71 delivers on both counts. It’s a modern day version of beauty and the beast; great looking on the outside, and all business on the inside. All of this will become clear as we dig deeper into the details.
But before leaving the subject of appearance, it’s hard to argue that the new Yealink BH71 doesn’t strike a close resemblance to the Poly Voyager 5200. The similarities are undeniable, right down to the shiny metallic strip that runs along the microphone boom.
Here's the Yealink BH71 earpiece side-by-side to the Poly Voyager 5200 which has been one of the most popular headsets ever. And it’s apparent that Yealink decided to give the people what they want in a newer, more compact design. And Yealink did a nice job with this update because they made an iconic headset in the 5200 even better.
Earpiece details - how it’s been improved
Here’s a quick summary of those improvements.
Battery - Yealink increased the battery to 10 hours of talk time, which is a 30% power improvement, and when the earpiece is recharged in the portable charging case, that 10 hours is extended to 30. This is because the portable charge case can provide up to two additional full charges. The charging port is proprietary and not your typical USB C, or micro USB.
Downsized - These days the term downsized typically refers to a reduction in a company workforce. However, as that term applies to the Yealink BH71, it means they made the earpiece 10% lighter, and smaller. The BH71 weighs 18 grams, or just over a half of an ounce. To help put that into perspective, it’s about the same weight as a half of a slice of whole-grain bread. Needless to say, this thing is light, and when you wear a headset for long periods of time, light is a good thing. So you can wear the BH71 with confidence knowing you’re sporting one of the lightest, baddest headsets on the planet.
Telescoping earpiece - The portion of the headset that loops around the ear is adjustable on the BH71. Having this movement allows the headset to conform to varying sizes of ears, rather than taking a one size fits all approach. This adjustability isn’t something you find on other headsets with this same design, which helps to make the BH71 more adaptable, and also more comfortable.
Dial up the volume - Another thing Yealink did to upgrade the earpiece is how you adjust the hearing volume. This is done on most headsets by pressing one button repeatedly for raising the volume, and a different button to lower it.
Rather than using two volume buttons, Yealink opted to use a nice crown style dial on the outer portion of the headset. So when you want more, or less volume you simply dial up, or dial down the volume. I think this dial to looks very similar to the dial found on the Apple watch. Dialing is much easier than button pressing, which makes this feature a very nice addition to this headset.
The Workstation base - The Star of the show
As great of an earpiece as the Yealink BH71 is, it gets upstaged by the highly versatile, unique, and some might even say, sexy workstation base. That makes the base the real star of this show.
So what makes this workstation base so great? Well, just have a look at its features, and when you do, you’ll have your answer, starting with;
3 inch interactive touchscreen - Having the feature of a touchscreen of any size on a headset base is uncommon. In fact, it’s rarely seen, with an exception of some older Jabra legacy models like the 9465, and 9470, and on the more recent Yealink WH66, and WH67 headsets. Personally, I’m a fan of touchscreens on wireless headset bases, especially if the touchscreen is intuitive and responsive, which the BH71 screen is.
This 3 inch touchscreen gives you access and visibility into settings, adjustments and connectivity, which is great. It’s very reactive to the touch without lag, which is nice, and through the screen you can make a lot of different adjustments to the headset to personalize it to your specific preferences.
And when you want to switch from computer to mobile phone, or mobile phone to desk phone use for example, just tap the touchscreen and go. But if you find that inconvenient, the BH71 switches automatically too. Smart, very smart.
Wireless charger included - Another outside the box feature you’ll find on the BH71 workstation base is a built-in wireless charger. Most of us find ourselves looking for power outlets, charge cables and power adapters when our devices need a recharge. We’ve all been there. But with the Yealink BH71 workstation there’s no need to look for your charging accessories because the solution is right in front of you. Simply place your phone on the wireless charge pad, and go about your day. It’s super convenient and helps you to avoid having a dead battery which can make us feel paralyzed and out of touch.
The wireless charger can not only recharge your mobile devices, but it can also recharge the BH71 portable charge case. And to accommodate these different devices, it can lay flat, or be angled up to 90 degrees. Either way, a fresh charge is only an arms length away.
3 USB-A ports - It’s no secret that computers today are stingy when it comes to giving USB ports. It seems that the Yealink Engineers were aware of this because they included three type A USB 3.0 ports on the side of the workstation base. No need for a separate USB hub to accommodate your devices, because you’ll have three ports built-in, and ready to go. This is another feature you rarely see on headset bases, and one more example that shows Yealink is serious about producing feature rich, affordable headsets.
Incoming call alert - If you want to take a break from using the headset, you won’t have to worry about missing calls. That’s because when the headset isn’t in use, you’ll hear an audible tone from the base that alerts you of an incoming call. You can then decide how you want to take the call; desk phone, mobile phone, speakerphone or your headset.
Built-in full duplex speakerphone - And if all this weren’t enough, the workstation base contains a full duplex speakerphone. Maybe your computer didn’t come with speakers, or the ones it did come with sound awful. If that’s the case, the speakerphone on the BH71 will give you a solid sound source for your calls, or to listen to music, or a podcast. Just plug it in, and you’ll realize that you’ve just been upgraded.
And if you don’t feel like using the headset, no sweat. Jump on a call hands free instead. You can even invite a few coworkers to join you. And no, this isn’t a cheesy, tinny sounding speakerphone that’s not suitable for business calls. It’s a full-on, professional grade speakerphone that will keep you sounding professional with echo cancellation, noise suppression and full duplex audio. Professional grade doesn’t have to be premium priced.
No download required
Typically, headset personalization occurs through the use of downloaded software. The issue here is some companies don’t allow employees to download software out of security concerns. That can make accessing updates, and product features a challenge. Fortunately, the BH71 doesn’t require software to be downloaded in order to access those same features because it can be done right through the touchscreen. This will come as good news to your IT Department, and good news to you too because you have all the controls to personalize your headset within arms reach.
Global view - Global control
But if you want a global view, and global control over all your Yealink devices such as headsets, webcams and speakerphones, there is a download just for you. It’s called the Yealink USB Connect. With this software you can perform firmware updates so your devices are always up to date. You can also do one click resets or restarts, voice prompts, adjust light levels, speaker volume, get a device log and a lot more.
Downloads are available for Windows and MAC.
Ports on the back of the workstation base
We already learned that there’s three USB-A ports on the side of the workstation base, but what’s on the back? Here’s what you’ll find.
- Power port to plug into a wall outlet
- A port to plug in the optional busy light
- There's a micro USB port that’s used to connect to Yealink branded phones. For other phone brands, there's an available accessory, the Yealink EHS60.
- Lastly, you’ll find a USB-C port used to connect to a computer
Sound quality - thumbs up, or thumbs down?
Here is where I have to travel in two sound directions. The first path is how you sound to your callers, and the second is the sound you hear in the headset ear speaker. Let’s start with the ear speaker.
Ear speaker sound - Right out of the gate I have to point something out. This is a very small headset, and unlike its massively larger relatives, there’s a very limited amount of space to pack in a speaker. And if you sense that I’m laying the groundwork for some disappointment, you’d be right.
Many mono and duo headsets come with 30mm ear speakers. By comparison, the Yealink BH71 comes with a 13mm ear speaker, the same as the Voyager 5200. With that in mind, you don’t have to be a genius to conclude that you’ll get less fidelity out of a 13mm speaker compared to one that’s 30mm. And the sound difference is noticeable.
If you purchase the Yealink BH71, which by the way, I highly recommend that you do, don’t enter into that relationship with lofty expectations of premium sound quality because that’s only going to set you up for disappointment.
The Yealink BH71 pumps out the kind of audio quality you’d expect from a very small headset of this type. This is by no means a knock on the BH71 because that’s just not where I’m going here. What I am saying is any headset that’s small like this shouldn’t be expected to produce HD, premium audio quality simply because there’s just not enough available real estate for the components to make that happen. This underscores the need to establish reasonable expectations when it comes to sound quality.
With that said, the Yealink BH71 is absolutely fine for use on business calls, or for casually listening to music or podcasts. It’s unquestionably clear and professional sounding, though the amount of volume could be increased a bit for my liking. But overall, it’s very capable of getting the job done.
Microphone sound quality - This refers to how you sound to your callers, and the truth is, not all headsets sound the same. Some sound crisp, clear and professional while others, well, not so much. And sounding professional on calls is important.
So how does the Yealink BH71 sound? Well, to help answer that question we put it to the test, and overall it sounded just fine. I can’t be critical here because the BH71 microphone sounded clear enough, loud enough, and without a doubt, professional enough. These are the qualities you want in a business grade headset, and the BH71 delivers.
The microphone itself is made up of 4 noise canceling, beamforming microphones. So whether you’re at home, in the office, or on the go, the BH71 will provide you with good sound quality no matter where work takes you. And that takes us to the background noise reduction tests we did.
Removing background noise - How the BH71 did in our noise tests.
In our tests, we used the Apple Airpods as a baseline for comparison. We tested and compared the Airpods to the Yealink BH71 in these conditions:
- A quiet environment, without any background noise
- The background noise of barking dogs
- Crying babies in the background
- And of course, our signature Vitamix blender test
Without question, the Apple Airpods aren’t your best choice when it comes to a headset for reducing background noise. In our tests you could hear everything when we used those. My advice is to give the Airpods a pass if you’re looking for a headset for use on your business calls. The microphone sound quality is fine, but its inability to remove background noise is very apparent.
The Yealink BH71 did a better job at removing background noise when compared to the Airpods, but only slightly better. Not great, not horrible, just ok. I for one am not on board with Yealink’s claim of 90% noise reduction. Without a doubt, the BH71 didn’t remove 90% of the noise we threw at it. Is that a deal killer? Not in the least bit. The microphone sounds good, and it does dampen the noise in the background. I’d like it to remove more, but it does well enough to make it acceptable for use on business calls.
You be the judge
Knowing that sound can be very subjective, you might want to listen to our sound tests so you can come to your own conclusion. You might agree with me, and you might not. Either way, have a listen and decide for yourself.
If there were a knock on the BH71, this would be it because in my view, it's not the best at removing noise. And if I were to give it a numeric rating, I’d sadly have to give it a 4 out of 10. Needless to say, Yealink has more work to do when it comes to noise reduction on the BH71.
Connectivity - the devices you can use the BH71 with
The Yealink BH71 earpiece uses Bluetooth version 5.2, while the base uses version 5.0. And like other Bluetooth devices, it can remember up to 8 total devices, and maintain a connection to 2 simultaneously. With that said, here’s what you can connect to:
BH71 - Mobile devices and Bluetooth enabled computers
BH71 Pro - Mobile devices, Bluetooth enabled computers, and computers via BT51 USB Adapter
BH71 workstation - Mobile devices, deskphones, and computers
BH71 workstation Pro - Mobile devices, deskphones, computers and laptops via BT51 USB Adapter.
When using the Yealink workstation, you can easily switch between deskphone, computer and mobile devices. And if you want to go hands free, or have colleagues join the call, you can switch to the built-in speakerphone with the press of a button. Your work, your way.
And finally, the workstation base allows you to plug directly into a Yealink desk phone. But if you’re not using Yealink phones, you can still use the BH71 because there’s an optional accessory available, called the EHS 60, that allows you to use the BH71 with other brands of phones. Contact us today to find out if your phone is compatible.
The Yealink BH71 is rated up to 100 feet which is pretty standard across most all brands of Bluetooth headsets. However, I noticed on the Yealink website it stated that the wireless range is up to 100 feet without the workstation base, and up to 250 feet with it.That caught my attention, so I reached out to Yealink for clarification on that 250 feet range estimate..
What I was told was the 250 feet wireless range statement was “theoretical” given the base could station can be moved around a desktop for better line of sight.
We put the Bluetooth earpiece alone, along with the earpiece used with the workstation base to the range test. We found both provided the same range at 50-60 feet. Theoretical estimates aside, in a real world working situation, it’s my belief that the BH71 is not capable of providing that amount of wireless range.
Summing up our wireless range tests, the Yealink BH71 provides wireless range that’s typical for most wireless Bluetooth headsets at “up to” 100 feet, with the typical usable range falling more into the 50-60 feet range.
At the risk of sounding overly gushy, I'll just say that I like this headset a lot. There’s much to like, and honestly, not that much to not like.
On the plus side
I really like the touchscreen and its responsiveness. I like all the nice improvements that were made to this headset design. I like that you can use this small, comfortable headset earpiece with all your communication devices. I like the longer battery life, and volume dial. I like that it provides a built-in speakerphone, and a Qi wireless charger for recharging mobile phones and the portable charge case. I like that it’s lighter and smaller, and I like that the BH71 can be used with all the leading UC platforms. I also like that it’s affordable, and I just think it looks cool.
On the minus side
I don’t like that it does a poor job at removing background noise, and I’d like the ear speaker to provide a bit more volume. Uhh, that’s about it.
If the pluses, and minuses were placed on a scale, it’s pretty clear that the pluses have it over the minuses. As they say in sports; scoreboard. So buy one today. Heck, buy one for your team because they’ll thank you over and over again. Yes, I’m saying the BH71 is that good.
Want to save some money on a BH71?
To help make buying one of these new Yealink BH71 headsets easier on your wallet, here are a few offers.
Trade-in. If you have old headsets gathering dust, why not trade them in for cash or credit to help lower the price of a new headset? Good for you, good for Mother Earth, and good for your budget. Click here to get your trade-in quote.
Bulk pricing. If you need 10 or more headsets, reach out to us for a personalized bulk price quote. Saving money never goes out of style.
- Monthly headset program. If the budget is tight but you still need to get new headsets, find out about our very affordable monthly headset plan. You can get what you need at a low, affordable monthly rate. Go here to learn more.