WOW!!! This was the first word that came out when I used the headset for the very first time and I will tell you why. At first I never expected so much from the headset, I rated it to bare the audio quality of a typical genius PC headphone because the looks were just like one but sadly the price wasn’t. I have used Bluetooth headsets in the past and they never had good audio quality, rich bass or voice clarity and the only reason why Bluetooth headsets impressed me was it works wirelessly and you could use it like a remote to answer calls or skip to the next track while listening to songs. Now I have not just one reason but many reasons to be using one of Nokia’s finest headsets of today. I had the opportunity of using this wonderful headset when my friend received the Nokia BH-905 sent from WOM World to be reviewed. At first glance I knew it was expensive because of the leather pouch, brushed metal finish on the sides of the headset, the gold plated stereo jacks and the brand name Nokia. Everybody knows that good things are not cheap so I had to listen to the audio quality which I assumed would spoil my first impression of the headset. This is the part where I fell in love and I was taken to the next level of musical entertainment. I was trying to find a track that would distort the sound while the bass was driving me crazy but on my phone which is a Nokia 5800 Xpress Music, I didn’t find any. The headset just kept giving rich bass and maintained the clarity without distortion even at maximum volume. I even tried increasing the bass level on my equalizer and still the headset was too good to be a Bluetooth headset. The first few minutes with the headset was amazing because I couldn’t find one reason to say this headset isn’t worth the price or the praise it has been getting from reviewers around the world. Enough about my first experience and expression, let’s move on to facts and specification now.
Physical features and interface:
180 mm x 155 mm x 59 mm
Multifunction key for power on/off, answer/end, voice dial, and redial
Active noise cancelling on/off (Oh you will love this piece of technology)
3.5 mm Nokia AV connector
Supporting adapters for:
– 2.5 mm Nokia AV connector
– Standard 3.5 mm jack
– Standard 6.3 mm jack
– Standard airplane jack
-15°C to +55°C
Operating range (maximum)
10 m (Bluetooth use)
Rechargeable 600 mAh Li-Ion Polymer battery
Operating time (maximum)
Talk (Bluetooth): 24 h
Music (Bluetooth): 25 h
Talk (Bluetooth, with active noise cancellation): 15 h
Music (Bluetooth, with active noise cancellation): 16 h
Music (Wired, with active noise cancellation): 40 h
Hands-free phone calls and music listening (without active noise cancellation) possible even with empty battery (wired connection)
Standby time (maximum)
With Bluetooth: 600 h
Charging time (maximum)
Sound and media:
From 15 Hz to 20 kHz
Additional sound and media information
Speaker impedance: 32 ohm
Speaker drivers: 32 mm high performance drivers
Number of noise cancelling microphones: 8
2 microphones capturing speech and advanced digital signal processing (DSP) for clear communication
Active noise cancellation technology: Reduces up to 99% background noise. (ANR switch on the headset)
2.1 with enhanced data rate (EDR)
Handsfree profile (HFP) 1.5
Headset profile (HSP) 1.1
Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP) 1.2
Audio/Video Remote Control Profile (AVRCP) 1.0
Sales package contents
Nokia Bluetooth Stereo Headset BH-905
Nokia Carrying Case CP-298
Nokia Audio Cable CA-143U with 3,5mm Nokia AV connector (~1,2m)
Nokia Extension Audio Cable CA-144U (~1,7m)
Nokia AV Adapter AD-52 for 2.5 mm Nokia AV
Nokia Audio Adapter AD-63 for standard 3.5 mm jack
Nokia Adapter AD-71 for airplane
Nokia Adapter AD-70 for 6.3 mm home stereo
Nokia Travel Charger AC-5
Note* (Above information was downloaded from the official Nokia website for accuracy)
The headset is a work of art where they have combined luxury with performance. The leather ear pad of the headset ensures comfort fit to the ears and less ear fatigue when used for a long time. The plastics of the headset are not at all cheap and it doesn’t make the cracking noise. The speakers of the headset are rotatable to ensure perfect fit regardless of angle and for easy storage. The buttons of the headset are well placed for easy access, you won’t like it if you are a lefty though since the controls are all on the right side except for the noise reduction switch. The signs re engraved on the steel plate for easy identification by touch and the ample space on the panel ensures you don’t press two buttons at the same time.
This is where the headset gains its advantage over size and price. Nokia is not renowned to manufacture high quality headsets but the gods of high quality headphone manufacturing companies has a new competitor in the market with the arrival of the Nokia BH-905. The quality is simply superb and the experience gets even better with the active noise cancellation option which I will explain separately. People who are fond of deep bass should try this headset because most headsets don’t express deep bass because it starts to distort the sound. The only time the headset showed signs of distortion was when it was used on my ipod and in high volume but this is not a reason to say the headset is not what is boasted. The headset is marketed mainly for the use of wireless entertainment so Nokia wouldn’t mind a little distortion when used on an ipod where most efficient headphones suffer. I only wish if they had something to fix on your chest to feel the bass pumping.
The headset can be paired swiftly without hassle and it has a wide range of connectivity not only limiting it to being used wirelessly but wired as well. I didn’t have a problem of using the headset when it lost its power, I simply used the cable provided and used it like a hands free kit. I didn’t feel a difference in the volume or the quality either. I also happened to try the headset on my Sony Ericsson C501 and the connectivity was hassle free and the audio quality was as good as the 5800 Xpress Music but I would say the 5800 Xpress Music was better when it came to trebles. The headset also has a good operating radius which is helped by the enhanced data rate of Bluetooth version 2.1. The headset rarely distorts when being used on opposite sides of a brick wall and the connection is very stable. Nokia says that the headset has a 10m radius but on average it can be used within 6-5m radius when used within partitions of your office or at home. The radius is greatly reduces when used within brick walls.
I cannot think of any other example other than the Energizer bunny for the headsets stamina. The headset seems to work on and on and on and I wondered if it would ever lose its battery. Since no one would use the headset continuously for 24 hours the battery life would amuse any Bluetooth headset user by lasting for more than 5 days. With the ANR function active the battery life drops down to 16 hours continuous playback and with the wire the headset would last 40 hours continuous in noise reduction mode.
Noise Cancellation Function
Nokia has introduced the active noise canceling (ANC) technology which is quite outstanding. Something that might hint the headset is real value for money in the minds of some people. The headset uses 10 microphones in total, eight of them dedicated to capture background noise for active noise cancellation while the other two captures your speech. This ensures crystal clear conversation and music playback. This technology is patented and is called the multi-microphone feed-forward active noise cancellation technology. I tested the headset in the noisy environments of the streets and the ANC function turned the noisy street into an auditorium. The noise was reduced by 80% and I felt I was listening to music in a silent room. The world seemed to be deaf to my ears.
I personally assume that the best advantage of owning the BH-905 is for the fact that you are not restricted to use the headset via Bluetooth but on any headphone supported device. You can also use the BH-905 while travelling by plane since it has the airplane jack included in the retail pack. The noise cancellation function comes in handy if you are seated near the engines of the aircraft. The battery life is also an advantage since you get continuous music playback and that is a lot compared to many headsets in the market. The noise cancellation function is something that sets apart the BH-905 from the conventional Bluetooth headsets and this is an innovative idea from Nokia, well done.
I hate this part because I love the headset so much but I have to mention the disadvantages to make this review a neutral one. The size of the headset and the fact that it cannot be carried everywhere is a huge disadvantage, the pouch provided is also too bulky. The price tag on the headset retails around £140 to £200 in the UK which would make you think not only twice but many times before you purchase the BH-905. An average phone like the Nokia 5230 would come into mind when you compare the price of the BH-905.
I wouldn’t own a BH-905 unless it was gifted to me and an awesome gift it would be for a music lover. The sole reason is the price tag on it but like I said before good things are never cheap and cheap things are never good. I am glad to have used the BH-905 and I hope Nokia would come forward with more headsets of the same quality but only much cheaper.
All contents inside the Pouch
The above review was done by Imran Ithisham a friend of mine due to time constraints who is soon to become an active contributor to WoM Lanka.
Photography: Azeem Badurdeen