Plantronics Audio 500 USB Digital Multimedia Headset

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Plantronics Audio 500 USB Digital Multimedia Headset
  • Plantronics Audio 500 USB Digital Multimedia Headset
  • Plantronics Audio 500 USB Digital Multimedia Headset
  • Plantronics Audio 500 USB Digital Multimedia Headset
  • Expert Rating

    3.00 / 5

Pros

  • Good sound quality, comfortable

Cons

  • Boring design, need to manually configure audio output

Bottom Line

The Audio 500 is a decent, reasonably-priced headset that is simple to install and operate.

Would you buy this?

"Tried and tested" would be the nice way of describing Plantronics' Audio 500 USB Digital Multimedia Headset design. Otherwise, it's just plain unimaginative.

The Audio 500 has a headband style design. Audio is delivered through two adjustable swivel-mounted ear cushions and a boom-mounted microphone that tucks neatly up and away when not in use. Less neat is the 3 metre long headphone USB cable, which features a remote that houses volume control and mute buttons, but there's really not much to do about cabling unless you're willing to spend more money on a wireless headset.

The headset is lightweight and comfortable, and despite its flimsy appearance, sound quality is impressive. Voice, music and sound effects are delivered in clear stereo, and the microphone is well positioned to pick up the user's voice without any popping and only minimal background noise. The volume control works well, and the microphone mutes cleanly.

Setting up the Audio 500 is a simple plug-and-play process. The headset connects via USB, and Windows XP automatically recognised the hardware and installed all its necessary drivers in seconds.

In subsequent trials, however, the device still took a few seconds to initiate each time - even though the drivers were already installed. Swapping audio outputs from the sound card to the headset and vice versa while running a program sometimes required Windows to be manually prompted via the Sounds and Audio Devices dialogue box ini the Control Panel. Even so, the drivers didn't seem to allow output devices to be swapped while sounds were still being played.

All in all, the Audio 500 is a decent, sturdy headset that is simple enough to install and operate, and its retail price of $79 is reasonable. The device is especially well suited to VOIP calls due to the inline mute button, and is also a comfortable, inexpensive solution for gaming, and other multimedia applications.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?