Reviews for Pulsar 590 Cordless Headset

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Product Reviews (16)

great headset

Strengths: dose it's job well. has very good sound quality. range is good.

Weakness: comes un paired with my Ipaq on ocation when ansering phone calls.

make sure your divices are compatable with this headsat. most of the current mp3 playing phones don't support the bluetooth A2DP profile. i use it with my i870, iPaq, and my Pc with a bluetooth dongle.

By zacknhs - Mar 3, 2006


Strengths: comfy and light,clear voice

Weakness: fragile

Let's me start with "GREAT sound quality" and the Verizon Treo 650 cell phone pairs easily with the actual phone part(sending/receiving calls) only. The 590A headphones comes with an adapter so you can have a wired attachment to the 650. The wired adapter is paired by bluetooth with the headphones. This adapter also needs the Palm adapter (3.5mm to 2.5mm jack) to plug into the phone (separate purchase). Once you're 'adapted', the sound quality ROCKS. Also, the Track Forward/Backward doesn't work with Treo's RealPlayer mp3 software. Volume up/down and mute works fine. The buttons on the headphones are a little cumbersome to reach. I tend to tilt my head down so I have to fiddle to find the volume buttons. Again, once wired, the sound is worth the effort!

By frankii - Apr 11, 2006

Great for traveling with a laptop- music + Skype

Strengths: Very nice hard shell case

Weakness: Weak documentation

I'm using this with a Dell D400 laptop that has built in Toshiba bluetooth (Dell Truemobile 350 module that took five minutes to install- $26 on Ebay). Setup was pretty straight forward and it seems to work great for what I wanted. Two different modes really, a stereo music mode, and a headset mode for phone use. If there's a way to have both at once, I haven't figured it out yet, as I switch back and forth. The stereo mode works great with iTunes or WMP, with the track buttons on the headset, too. I have found out in that mode the bluetooth signal is more sensitive to walls than shear range. Walking very far doesn't work if there are walls in between. The headset mode works great with Skype. I haven't tried it with a cell phone, but that's where the two modes are supposed to work simultaneously. I'm very pleased- $109 with shipping, and it's everything I wanted.

By jowoane; - Jun 13, 2006

Paradise Found...Mostly

Strengths: Allows BOTH Bluetooth phone use AND Bluetooth audio streaming directly from A2DP-compatible sources Relatively light-weight Looks great, high-tech; minimalistic design makes operation intuitive

Weakness: Recharging base a bit awkward Fold-in design counterintuitive and doesn't compact headset as much as comparable headphones Telescoping microphone short, isn't flexible Not the best audio quality

After putting in countless hours of research into Bluetooth audio streaming, I finally settled on what appears to be the best of the two or three headphone/headset-type products to deliver such a feature, and the product (surprisingly) lives up almost completely to my expectations.


First, a little background on Bluetooth audio streaming for the tech-impaired. Bluetooth is a wireless technology that, unlike infrared, does not require line-of-sight access (meaning that you can keep your MP3 player or phone in your pocket or even in the other room) and, unlike WiFi, is merely a local connection for interaction between two of your personal devices. It has most commonly been used for mobile phone headsets, allowing someone to use such a headset without cords, something that greatly increases usability (as those who've used a corded headset can attest).

I'm on my second Pocket PC Phone (now called Windows Mobile Phone) and have long wanted to have not only cordless access to the phone, but cordless access to the music too. It would seem that if the former can be done, the latter should be a no-brainer. Unfortunately, in fact, almost NO Bluetooth headsets can be used for this purpose. There are "Bluetooth headphones" out there that not only have no phone functionality but also don't connect directly with your device but rather with a separate adapter you must connect to the audio port of your device, which partially defeats the entire purpose.

It boils down to Bluetooth "profiles," and the profile used for phone communication is different than the one for audio streaming (known as "A2DP"). What I wanted was a single headset that (a) could communicate directly with my Pocket PC as a phone headset, (b) could communicate directly with my Pocket PC as headphones to listen to music or for watching videos, and (c) could communicate with my non-Bluetooth MP3-player via the audio port.

THIS headset DOES accomplish all three of these things...with one caveat. The device you're using to stream audio MUST be Bluetooth enabled WITH the A2DP profile in order to stream directly to the headphones without having to pass through a separate go-between device.

As of March 2006, only a few Pocket PC's, MP3 players, and other mobile devices have this A2DP profile; most Bluetooth phones (mine included) only allow for phone-headset use. Thus, I had to find and download a patch for my Pocket PC's Bluetooth stack to add this functionality. Fortunately, this solution worked easily and flawlessly, which is important given that unofficial patches in general (for other needs/devices) have caused me headaches more often than not.

If you are using a Pocket PC 2003 Second Edition and it uses the "Widcomm/Broadcom Bluetooth stack," search on "Broadcom Bluetooth Stack Patch for PDA2k Pocket PC Phones" in a web search-engine and the first link or two will allow you to download this patch. You CANNOT use this patch if you have the Microsoft Bluetooth Stack.

How do you know which stack you have? Turn off Bluetooth by clicking on it and selecting "Turn Bluetooth Off." If you see a red X in the lower right-hand corner, you have the Widcomm/Broadcomm stack. If you see a line through the Bluetooth icon, you have the Microsoft stack and cannot use this patch—in other words, no audio streaming for you!

Windows Mobile 5.0 will, beginning soon, have built-in A2DP functionality; otherwise, implementation is spotty across the market. And don't buy a Windows Mobile 5.0 device expecting that you can download an update to give you A2DP. It's up to each manufacturer whether to release such an update, as Windows Mobile is specific to the design of the device, and you may end up out of luck.


Once you're set up, the hard part is over. There are three ways you can use this headset. EVEN if you don't have a Bluetooth device, you CAN use this with the adapter to connect to ANY audio device (such as a Walkman or MP3 player). If you DO have a Bluetooth phone, you can use it as a cordless headset. Best of all, if you have an A2DP-ready device, you can stream audio DIRECTLY from the device to the headphones. The only drawback is that you can't do connect audio BOTH to a Bluetooth A2DP device AND the included audio adapter at the same time, a minor drawback. You CAN, however, connect to both a Bluetooth phone as a hands-free headset AND an audio device (A2DP *or* using the adapter) SIMULTANEOUSLY, EVEN if it's the SAME device doing double-duty like my Pocket PC Phone. In fact, when I answer a call, it automatically pauses audio playback while I'm talking and restarts it once I hang up—very cool indeed!

I'm out of space here, but suffice it to say that I quite like this product and recommend it to anyone looking for a REAL solution for Bluetooth audio streaming.

By Anonymous - Mar 8, 2006

A headset with worth

Strengths: Bluetooth Phone Capable Stereo

Weakness: Price

Overall this item is a worthy buy for the ability that it can do. It is struturally well made and innovatively eye pleasing!

In addition, it is packed with "accessories" to ensure that you are not missing anything from it. From USB/Wall Charger, docking station to the carrying case (all included). It is an all in one package without taking anything away from you.

Pairing with the phone, laptop, and adapter, it is as easy as 1, 2, 3.

As far as sound quality, with stereo, you are rest assured that you are getting quality sounds from any portable device, laptop or cell phone.

So far there hasn't been any hitch with this and truly happy with the product.

By nutsnbolts - Nov 19, 2005

excellent buy

Strengths: Sound

Weakness: price

This unit is a great deal for all transit riders. no longer will you need to remove your headphones to answer your phone. its all in one! The Pulsar 590 allows you to listen to music and aswer the phone all in one unit. an added bonus is the stero sound while on a call. You actually can take a call and hear in both ears. This unit is a must if you listen to your MP3 and constantly miss calls. I highly reccommend it.

By wilcher1 - Mar 6, 2006

At first the Pulsar 590A looks and...

Strengths: high specs

Weakness: falls apart, inferior plastic, bad customer service, compatibility, price

At first the Pulsar 590A looks and sounds very good once you get over the hefty price tag. Was unable to pair with my brandnew integrated bluetooth computer. Customer Service claims they only deal with pairing with phones and not computers and the headset is NOT suppose to be compatable with computers. mmmm makes you think. If i wanted a mobile headset only, why would i go stereo?

So still using the adapter and not my integrated bluetooth, even after hours and hours of research, and reinstallations, setting changes etc.

After two months i noticed small cracks in the plastic cover on the LH. Then all hell breaks lose. Small pieces start falling out and the cover just disintegrates. Today the same happened to the RH cover. The pressure from the black headband on the covers are to big for the plastic to hold out. Major design flaw imo.

After talking to Customer service again, the resolve is that i send the complete unit back to the supplier in the States at my cost, and have him replace it, at which time i need to pay customs again not knowing if the replacement will last longer that three months. At which time the unit price will be in excess of $400. I think i will rather buy a new cordless top of the line headset from a different manufacturer.

By swerwer - Mar 10, 2006

Warning, not compatable

Strengths: Not many

Weakness: Will not work as advertised.

Warning, Plantronics Plusar 590a headsets are not mp3 cell phone player compatible.
I have heard mention of only one cell phone that is compatible. My phone is an LG8100 and others are affected. Even though the advertising says they are an “Ultimate Stereo Bluetooth Headset” and as personally stated by an online rep. “Absolutely compatible with the LG8100 cell phone”, they will not work as such. Unfortunately I purchased these ($250 retail) phones as a solution for allowing good mp3 tunes “in stereo” while puttering around my office while at the same time being able to switch to the phone as they quote “seamlessly”. Not! They cannot access the mp3 player on the phone. Their support personnel wrote me this cop out note when, after purchasing, I inquired why they wouldn’t work as their advertising states. “Your phone needs to support the "A2DP" profile (advanced audio distribution) in order to enable full stereo sound and streaming audio with the Pulsar headset. Most currently available phones do not yet support this profile and thus can only make use of the headset as a mono device for phone calling, not as a media headset for music and other audio outputs.” Sorry to sound so negative but to me this was a real bummer and a waste of money. They won’t even play the Mp3s in mono! It’s kind of stupid running around the office wearing a full heavy stereo headphone set just to answer mono phone calls. Be wary.

By marktscott - Jan 12, 2006


Strengths: good sound quality, comes w/ great accessories, lightweight.

Weakness: CHEAP PLASTIC, cannot pair w/ Treo 700w. proprietary charging connections, should of been USB.

I cannot recommend this product to anyone who plans on using heavily, or thinks highly of a products build quality.

I used the 590 everyday at work, and home. I'd use the case in between transit, and after repeatedly folding and unfolding the headset, the plastic began to wear like a 5 dollar toy product. I will stress that I use this product heavily and review many bluetooth headphone products. This was by far the worse in product quality I've seen out of the 7 or so bluetooth headsets I've reviewed.

I will say that the sound was good, bass reproduction was decent. I did not have a problem pairing this headset w/ my Dell D620 laptop w/ bluetooth built in. I also have bluetooth on my desktop computer (via USB) using the Bluetake BT900sx adapter, and had no problems pairing it with it. There was a slight delay in audio when listening to music via my laptop or desktop. Its not a problem with music as much as it is with Movies. With movies, there was about a 2-3 second delay in audio, pretty annoying. If I used the included bluetooth adapter that plugs into a regular headphone jack, the delay was not as obvious, almost non existent at times.

Go w/ another set of bluetooth headphones.

By MystaMax - May 11, 2007

Very Pleased

Strengths: comfortable, light weight

Weakness: Have to read instructions.

I read all the reviews for this product. Most of them were right on. I was a little hesitant buying a product brand that I usually wouldn't buy. But, I'm glad I made the purchase. Very happy with product. I bought this not long ago so I haven't really gotten a chance to use this product that much.

By jokermanhb - Apr 27, 2006

great headphones w/o the cords

Strengths: Bluetooth pairing with phones, laptops, or anything with a built in Bluetooth module. lightweight. great sound quality overall.

Weakness: minor signal/sound quality issues at times, price, not rated for use with SCMS copy right protection.

Overall, i've been happy with my purchase of these headphones. i wanted something that was fairly lightweight and cordless. there doesn't seem to be much in the Bluetooth cordless headset/headphone arena (at least when i was looking). but i must say that my experience with the 590 has been very pleasant.

luckily, i've been able to pair the 590 to my Motorola RAZR, my Toshiba Tecra M4, and with the included audio output adapter (590A only). the sound has been excellent. range has been very good at 20-30 feet, depending on obstructions. i can go 8+ hours on a single charge. most of its use, it is paired up my my Toshiba laptop with is built in Bluetooth module.

there are a few minor drawbacks of the 590. one being that there can be a slight delay in the audio signal from the source to the headset. it varies depending on the source that its paired up to. occasionally listening to internet streams, it will cut out for a second and when the signal gets reestablished there will be a small sampling of a pitch change. the sound will seem like its getting faster and the tone sounds higher, but quickly returns to normal within a second or two. the sound can seem kind of average at times (in headset mode), i guess it depends on what its connected to. the mic position isn't great and it can be hard for people you are speaking with to hear you, but overall its not bad. and last, is it lack of ability to connect to my laptop that uses the SCMS copy right protection mode. there is a work around if you have a Toshiba laptop with their Bluetooth module.

other than those issues, the Pulsar 590 is a great set of headphones for wireless listening freedom.

By gon1127 - Mar 28, 2007

Decent product. Frustrating compatibility issues.

Strengths: Fun form factor. Excellent charging accessories. Holds charge for a long time. Folds fairly compactly.

Weakness: It doesn't always stay connected via BlueTooth to my Treo 700p.

I found out from Plantronics that it is a known compatibility issue that they're trying to get Palm to fix. So, unfortunately I preiodically have to reset the connection. Frustrating when I'm ready to make a call.

By sskssk2 - Jan 2, 2007

Breaks easy

Strengths: None

Weakness: Flimsy, easy to break, not worth the money

This headset was used about 4-5 times and the frame broke. The store that sold it will not replace it, so now it is just trash. Do NOT buy this product, it is flimsy and will break where the earpiece attaches to the head set frame.

By anonymous; - Sep 27, 2006

Very nice headset.

Strengths: Very easy to use. Great sound. Connects to my Vaio (via the included Bluetooth adapter)& Verizon VX8500 cell phone very fast with no set up problems

Weakness: None so far.

I have found this unit a pleasure to use! I have heard that it is not for gaming because of the delay, but for stereo and phone use, it is perfect.

By g-janello; - Aug 21, 2006

Overall good product

Strengths: Combination of phone and stereo, voice quality for phone calls

Weakness: Price, cheap material that could easily break

I was a little wary in buying this product, because of the price. It is a good device if you can somehow figure out how to make it work with your phone.

The charging cradle is awkward. The transmitter that is provided with this headset can come handy. The audio quality is good. I think it is overpriced. But this is one of the most useful bluetooth devices out there.

By slickdealspecialist - Jun 4, 2006

Plantronics Pulsar 590 has collected 4 expert reviews for Plantronics Pulsar 590 and the average expert rating is 80 of 100. The average score reflects the expert community’s view on this product. Click below and use to find all ratings, product awards and conclusions.
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