“Aren’t all headsets the same?” Wow! I think that’s one of the dumbest things you’ve ever said, imaginary reader. Do a little digging around, and you’ll see right away: price and quality fluctuate wildly. But do too much research, and you’re paralyzed with information overload. That’s where I come in. As an emmy award-winning comedy writer, I love yacking on the phone when I should be writing. And I need my hands free for gesturing, scratching, and holding coffee (sometimes two cups at once). So I know a little something about what’s new in headset tech these days, which I’ll share with you now. You’re welcome.

Voyager Focus UC B825, $ 350.50/ £269.99, by plantronics, $185, plantronics.com

Pure Flex-citement

This headset is brought to you by the word “flexibility.” Its microphone boom is so dang flexible, you can turn it all the way around so it’s pointing at the back of your neck, like Guy Fieri’s sunglasses. That may not be useful when actually speaking to clients, but you will look hella cool between calls. Quickly adjusts to cradle the cranium of all your annoying coworkers; the pinheads, the fatheads, and every numbskull in between. Seriously, you should look for a new job. But bring this headset with you!

Jabra Evolve 40 Mono for Mobile Phone, $38.95/ £30, onedirect. co.uk; Encorepro 500 usb series by plantronics, $185, plantronics.com


Total headset magic. Don’t let the low price fool you; this headset will kick your head’s butt. Single-earphone styling means you won’t miss any office gossip while you’re supposed to be working. A handy 3.5mm jack for mobile connection is standard equipment. Which is great, because they’re so comfortable and natural feeling, I sometimes forget to take them off for days at a time. The bright red cord and headband piping do add a nice decorative zing, but it’s not the headset to wear to a formal occasion like a funeral or court date. Trust me, I know.

What's Jabra done for you lately?

It’s just a fact of Human Nature: if you’ve ever held a tennis racket, at some point you’ve turned it around and strummed it like an imaginary guitar. Similarly, anyone who wears a headset for any length of time will inevitably pretend to be Janet Jackson, on her Rhythm Nation 1814 tour. It’s perfectly natural. Especially with this headset, which will take you on an “Escapade” of comfort, functionality and pure stereo sound. And you say you’re into sleek design? Just ask for model BIZ 2400 II (or Miss Jabra, if you’re nasty).

Sennheiser is German for awesome

How good is the Noise Cancelling ability of this headset’s microphone? To find out, I conducted a little experiment: during a call, I ate pork rinds and Pop Rocks under a bonnet-style hair dryer from a 1970’s beauty salon, set on MAX BLOW. The person on the other end reported every chomp was crystal clear! Then asked me to never call back, ever. Sorry, Mom! Corded design makes it perfect for young headset users on the go, but who only like to go about 12 feet away from their desk. Style buffs will love the sweet retro-Euro design. If the robot in Fritz Lang’s “Metropolis” had worn a headset, it would’ve be this one.

CC540 Binaural Headset by Sennheiser, $128/£98, voipsupply.com; Encorepro 500 usb series by plantronics, $185/$142, plantronics.com

The headset at its most jet-set

You know how sometimes things that don’t look particularly fancy turn out to be VERY fancy? That’s this headset. It doesn’t need to show off because its quality and greatness are self-evident. Don’t get me started on the luxury spa-level comfort of the ear pads. They’re like leatherette beanbag chairs for the sides of your head. So lightweight, it feels like it’s hovering a quarter inch above your skull. The stubby microphone design tells the world, “I’m secure in who I am.” Comes with a USB dongle for PC connection that you will immediately lose. But don’t worry about it. There’s probably a loose one you can borrow in the break room kitchen’s dongle drawer.