Aliph has just released a new headset, the Jawbone PRIME, which replaces the eleven-month-old Jawbone 2. Realistically, it hasn't changed that much in terms of looks or size or price ($129.99 MSRP), but it has changed inside.
For one, the Jawbone PRIME offers Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR, which means multipoint and easier pairing.
NoiseAssassin has been revved to NoiseAssassin 2.0, which "delivers an order of magnitude improvement in the noisiest environments (6 to 9dB) extracting even more noise while keeping the user's voice natural."
Whereas Jawbones have always used that nub
(or Voice Activity Sensor, VAS) that had to touch your face for noise reduction to work, Jawbone PRIME adds the Acoustic Voice Activity Detector (AVAD).
When the VAS is not touching the face, Jawbone PRIME performs as good as or better than any other noise cancelling headset. When the VAS touches the face, you get the turbo-boost to the NoiseAssassin performance.
This is also the first Jawbone that helps filter out wind noise.
By leveraging some innovative DSP techniques and Jawbone's proprietary Voice Activity Sensor (VAS) to reconstruct the missing speech Aliph has implemented a wind solution that maintains award-winning design without having to apply a visually disruptive wind-sock or baffle to physically block the wind.
Talk time hasn't really changed, at 4.5 hours. Standby time of 8+ days. Colors? Two different models, regular and "Ear Candy."
The regular model comes in black, brown and platinum. Ear Candy comes in "Frankly Scarlet," "Yello!," "Drop Me a Lime" and "LILAC You Mean It."
While some would say the ability to hear and be heard is the number one concern in a Bluetooth headset, for me, it's actually comfort. What good is it if you can hear the other person and vice-versa if you can't wear the darn thing for more than 5 minutes?
We've never been able to get comfortable with a Jawbone. And we've always had trouble with keeping a headset on without an earloop. The Jawbone PRIME features five different eartips, and an earloop as well, but despite all the rave reviews we read, when we look at customer reviews at places like Amazon.com and the like, we frequently see complaints about comfort (or lack thereof).
Don't let me dissuade you, necessarily though. Try it out, as I will admit the noise cancellation is superior to just about anything else, but make sure you can return it if you don't like it.