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March 26, 2008 / Marco

Nokia BH-503 or Nokia BH-604: Which One to Buy

Yesterday I posted an article about Nokia BH-503 and compared it with Nokia BH-604. I also tried to highlight what either of them is intrinsically capable of doing. However, if you’re still wondering which one to buy, it might not be a bad idea to read my observations below.

Stereo Bluetooth headsets and built-in microphones

As we all know, stereo Bluetooth headsets come with built-in microphones. In general, these microphones are inferior to the ones found on different handsets. For instance, built-in headset microphones cannot come close to what the N82’s microphone offers. Nonetheless, we should choose the best built-in microphone when it comes to buying a stereo Bluetooth headset. I’m confident that the BH-503 has a relatively better microphone if you compare it with the BH-604. The microphones are essentially the same upon taking calls, but if you use an application like ALON MP3 Dictaphone to record surrounding sounds the difference becomes obvious. As far as ALON MP3 Dictaphone is concerned, the BH604 generates a noticeable hissing sound when its microphone replaces my N82’s microphone for recording purposes. The BH-503, however, does a better job of recording surrounding sounds without inserting extra noises into the recorded file.

Stereo Bluetooth headsets and Symbian screen readers

If you use a Symbian screen reader to access your handset features, I highly recommend that you go with the BH-503 rather than the BH-604. While both headsets function equally well on my XPS M1210 notebook with JAWS 9.0, the BH-604 generates annoying speech cutouts at the beginning of utterances on my N82. This means that if you press a key on your handset, wait for a few seconds and issue the second key, you won’t hear most of the phone’s response. This is not an issue with the BH-503. Besides, the BH-604 usually produces high-pitched sounds which can be easily caught by many users’ ears. The BH-503, on the other hands, never changes the sound frequencies in a way that its audio is quite similar to the audio which is generated by the handset speakers.

The last word, for God’s sake

Technically speaking, although both headsets make use of V2.0 bluetooth profiles, Nokia BH-503 is a better stereo Bluetooth headset for both sighted and visually impaired handset owners. If you use either Nuance TALKS or Mobile Speak, the BH-503 should be your top priority even with its higher price tag.


One Comment

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  1. Amir / Mar 28 2008 7:17 am

    I bought the BH-503 at a rebate price of $90 from a local store — see this page:

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