Customer Reviews: Plantronics BackBeat GO Bluetooth Wireless Stereo Headset, Retail, Black, 86800-03" because the old one "BackBeat GO
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on May 15, 2012
These are great sounding headphones and pair very easily with iphone and the computer. Battery life is great for such a small headset and the features are easy to use. The acid test is calling my wife and she didn't notice I was wearing them, I guess that means the noise cancellation and microphone are good.

What is utterly baffling is that they don't pair with more than one device. This is extremely annoying because to switch from your iphone to the computer you have to DELETE the headset device pairing on the computer then set the headset in paring mode and repair. This can take 2 minutes. When you switch back the iphone you have to do the same, delete the device then repair. This is just a crazy stupid omission on the part of Plantronics. A Jambox for example has no problem remembering my computer, iphone and ipad, it will connect with whichever is nearest and has bluetooth on allowing me to switch it at will.
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on October 15, 2012
I have used these, daily, for the past two months (as of this writing). I think they're just about perfect.

- Sound quality: I give them a 10. I find the highs to be crisp and clear, the mid-range to be even and not harsh and I find the bass to be very deep and tight. I am comparing these to a pair of Beats Tour In-Ear Headphone (Black) and a pair ofShure E2c Sound Isolating Earphones - both of which are quality earbuds. I don't think the Plantronics sound as good as the Shure, but they beat the pants off of the Beats (which have almost no top end, whatsoever). Folks have mentioned a lack of bass on these - they aren't wearing them properly or the shape of their ear canal doesn't fit these. If you find that these don't have much bass, try the larger earbud rubber thing. You've GOT to have a good seal inside the ear canal for these things to work properly. They really do sound super.

- Volume: My biggest complaint is that I wish they were louder. They're NOWHERE NEAR as loud as the Beats Tour. I find myself pressing "volume up" only to be met with the "max-volume-ding." That said, there is plenty of volume for "safe" listening; just, sometimes, when you're "not concerned about safe listening levels," these will look out for your long-term hearing.

- Fit: They're ubelievably comfortable. I don't even know that I'm wearing them when I run. I have the "stablizers" on, but I don't find that they do much.

- Battery Life: It's short ... probably 4 hours of listening and 8 of stand-by. But, that's absolutely to be expected from something that is this small - there just isn't a place to put a high-capacity battery. I charge them every day.

- Controls: They work ... they're intuitive. Easy to find, easy to reach.

- Other: They only maintain a pairing with one device at a time. I don't mean one *active* device; I mean, one device, total. So, to switch them between my phone and computer, I have to pair them to the new device. Then, to restore the original pairing, I have to "forget" the headphones from the previous pairing and re-pair. Minor inconvenience. Also, if you're an iPhone user who travels alot - airplane mode disables bluetooth. So, these are useless on an airplane.

Update: Last week, after owning this for about 4 months, my headphones died in the middle of a call. Without warning, they went silent. I couldn't get them to power-on, power-off or do anything. I called Plantronics and they said that if I email them a copy of the receipt, they'll send me out a new pair at no cost. I'm a little disappointed that they died and considered dropping a star, but you can't beat that kind of customer service.
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on May 2, 2012
I'll say up front that when I work out I sweat in buckets. It's just the way I'm built. I'm curious and wipe down the equipment I use afterwards but other gym members don't use the treadmills next to me if they want to avoid a bath... Ya, I'm that guy...

I really wanted to like the Plantronics Backbeat Go headset as they're smaller than the Jaybird Freedoms and as a result they fit in my ears under my cycling helmet much better. The longer cord between the earbuds also helps keep it from getting stuck on the back of my neck and allows me to turn my head without dislodging an earbud.

However, the design puts the controls on the cord rather than the earbud in an attempt to keep the overall size of the earbuds down to a minimum. I get that, appreciate that but have two problems with that... First problem is that it makes the right side of the cord heavier which, over the course of a long workout (20-30 mile bike ride) results in the majority of the slack in the cord ending up on the right side frequently. It's annoying to have to adjust it all the time.

I could overlook this and deal with it but the other issue is that sweat can follow the cord from the earbud to the controls and Plantronics did not do enough to prevent sweat from leaking into the controls. This is readily apparent as I've managed to kill not one but two of these in 10 workouts.

So, my advice to you is this: if you don't sweat you'll be happy with the purchase. However if you do you'll eventually kill these with moisture even if you don't rain sweat like I do. Either buy the Jaybird Freedoms and live with larger earbuds or maybe hit the top of the cord where it enters the headset controls with a dab of silicon caulk to help keep sweat out of them before you use them for the first time.
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on August 29, 2012
These are the headphones i have owned or own, starting from the oldest:

Sony MDR J10 10$ 2006-2009 (cheap, good sound, sweat doesnt kill them)
Sony MDR AS20 20$ 2008-2010 (cheap, good sound, sweat doesnt kill them)
Motorola S9 70$ 2009-2010 (good sound, but cant sleep on back, pairing issues, loses signal if phone is in pocket)
Sony ericcson MW600 70$ 2010 (pain in the butt with clip, volume slider, software hangs)
LG HBS700 2011-2012 50$ 2011-2012 ( great battery life, isolation, sound is good, sweat proof, easy to use, pairs nicely)
Bose QC 15 299$ 2011-2012 (awesome noise cancellation, great sound)
Bowers and Wilkins C5 200$ 2012 (great design, noise isolation, but takes time getting used to as the plastic that keeps the buds in place is hard and causes a little pain and stress on ear shape)
Plantronics Backbeat GO 70$ 2012(2 days, not good, return)

I have tried these for 2 days and am disappointed that i spent 70$ for these.
Nice design.
Short and comfy cable.
easy to use controls.

4.5 hrs of battery life? i run out of charge by the end of the day and i started at 11 am and ended at 8 pm with at least 4 hrs of no use in between.
The stabilizers are soft plastic and dont help much to keep them in your ear.
All three sizes of ear buds dont keep this in my ear. Keeps slipping, the isolation seal is not formed.
very tinny, sound quality is lacking.
Pairing is a pain. You can only pair with one device. If you switch, you have to delete profile, put headset in pairing mode and pair again.
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on July 26, 2013
I am a distance runner, and wired earbuds are something that are kind of a hassle while running. However, had I known how bad these were going to be, I would have just stuck with it.

First of all, the earbuds themselves cannot handle running. The ear pieces were either too small to stay in, or too large to fit well (thus allowing them to fall out). They are bulky, which makes sense because the bluetooth pairing hardware/batter has to go somewhere.

Worse yet, the pair I received didn't hold charge for more than an hour at a time. I charged it fully overnight 3 times and each time it died in an hour or less. Considering my shortest runs in a week are 40 minutes, that is completely unacceptable. If you're a runner, do not buy these!
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on August 31, 2014
I wanted to update my review below because I have discovered the issue I was experiencing had nothing to do with the battery. In actuality, it was due to the placement of the power button and the carrying case that's included. I tend to carry headset in the case, in my pocket. Inadvertently, the power was being turned on in my pocket. So, I've upped my rating to 4 stars- for the quality of the sound and ease of use. Minus one star for the carrying case and the fact that the power can be accidentally turned on while in your pocket.

I bought these a while ago and wanted to wait to give a review. As with items of this type, I think it makes more sense to write a review after they've been "run through the paces", as opposed to when they are new.
First and foremost - the sound quality is great in my opinion. The highs are crisp, without the bass being to "muddy". The bluetooth paring process is quick and easy - much like pairing any other bluetooth device for those with experience. The buds fit comfortably in ear. Some have complained that while working out, sweat makes them slip out. I had this experience once, but simply changed to a different sized rubber form (included) and the problem was solved. The controls are simple and intuitive.
All of the above considered, the only reason why I rate this a 3-star product has to do with an odd behavior I've been experiencing with the battery. While in use, the battery life is great - I get several hours of always-on use. The odd problem I've been having is this - after use, I turn them off. When I go back to them a couple days later, somehow they have turned themselves back on. On some occasions when this happens, the battery will be completely dead and I have to re-charge before use.
I'm not sure if anyone else is experiencing this issue. I have reported to Plantronics but have not heard back from them yet. I believe in giving any gadget maker the benefit of the doubt in that it's possible I simply got a defective unit.

Overall, great sounding and great fitting buds. But if the battery / power-on symptom I'm experiencing is par for the course with these ear buds, I would suggest looking elsewhere.
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on August 22, 2013
I like these headphones/Bluetooth phone control very much. The only issue is battery life. But this is true of many Bluetooth earpieces. I get an average of 4 hours continuous use. So I bring the charge cord and plug them in at work and plug them in over night. The battery must be the size of a crumb! Everything is in one earpiece. Nice noise cancelling quality and sound for phone and media. Controls for all that is needed right on the inline microphone (volume, answer, and more). Seller fast and efficient.
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on April 10, 2012
After reading fawning reviews for the BackBeat 906 and 903+, I decided to take the plunge and get the BB GOs. These would in fact be my 4th or 5th Bluetooth headset purchase this year, all of which except for the Arriva Leo headset have been returned. My primary use of Bluetooth headphones is working out, so frankly, I could careless how they look on me in an office setting or anything like that. I have very simple needs for my headsets:

* Decent fit
* Decent sound
* Passable battery life

These BackBeat GOs do possess all three of those qualities however, it's the fit that just annoys me to no end. See, in the last year, manufacturers have gravitated towards the dog tag/hanging style à la Jaybird JF3 Freedom/Outdoor Technologies DogTags. While this is great for some, I find it to be god awful annoying. On the BackBeat GO, the neck cable connecting the two earpieces is about 2 feet long. I don't know WHY it's that long, but it is. So this means that in addition to the rather large earpieces (thanks to the larger drivers inside), you have a giant cable dangling around your neck and sticking out from your head. If you use these during a commute or in an office, that may be fine. However, when you're racking a barbell on your back, it's annoying because not only do you run the risk of crushing the wire with the bar, the wire being physically stuck under the bar naturally limits your head movement. Gee, that sounds like the exact same problem people have with WIRED headsets and is one reason they look to Bluetooth for a solution. Plantronics have indeed cut the wires between your head and the phone but not between the earbuds themselves. When I hit the gym, I want to workout, not worry about my headphones getting caught up in the equipment. If you want a decent length neck cable, look at either the Arriva Leo or Jabra SPORT.

In addition to the fact that the overly long wire is a step back for Bluetooth, it's also just really annoying. When you're running, typical wired headsets rub against your clothing and can cause uncomfortable or undesirable cable feedback. No one wants to deal with that for any length of time, so they choose Bluetooth. Well, thanks to Plantronics' unnecessarily long neck cable, you too can enjoy all of that annoying cable feedback once again.

I wanted to like this headset, I really did. I like the simple aesthetics and straightforward operation but Plantronics followed the rest of the pack by plying to everyone wanting dangling headsets. If I could shorten the cable, I probably would have kept these 'phones, but alas, I cannot do that.

* Simple, minimal aesthetics
* Inline controls are simple and straightforward to use
* Moderate selection of ear tips to get a decent fit

* Obnoxiously long neck cable
* Included ear stabilizers/ear wings look unable to keep the earbuds in each ear during actual vigorous exercise
* Plantronics MyHeadset Android app is marketed -- by Plantronics, on the BackBeat GO package! -- to support this headset yet, it does not

EDIT: I forgot to previously mention their stated 4.5 hour battery life is pretty spot on. When I bought these, I got 2+ hours out of the box without charging them as well. Also, Plantronics' marketing materials (and photos) clearly state this comes with a little case to put the buds in, my box came with no such case and the box mine came in explicitly did not mention a case. I wonder why there's such a discrepancy?

And this is my BIGGEST problem with headset makers: proprietary chargers. Most companies just provide you with a proprietary USB cable with their own connector hacked on, but not Plantronics. They were so forward-thinking, so progressive, they decided that these should only be charged with an AC adapter...that has a non-detachable USB!!!!!! cable. Seriously? Who designed this? You're going to make me use a wall charger and only a wall charger? No thanks, Plantronics. Luckily, these buds have a standard size micro USB connection that you use can *any* cable on to charge. I actually _did not_ notice the AC charger snafu until I was packing these earbuds back up to return them.
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on August 11, 2013
After 3 months of intensive use of the device I can now say that the product is not bad at all. I found the sound quality not bad or I should say very good. What I like about these is that they are discreet (some people did not even notice it was around my neck at times, I can walk at night in peace not having the fear of attracting attention with a flashing blue light) and I can sleep with them. They also have some sort of noise cancelling effect but only if the place is not extremely (a train station for example) noisy but it does the job at the library or at the study room when the other students are having a group session or just talking in the lounge. The fact that can sleep with them was a great plus. I work out with them and did not experience the sweat problem other were having and yes I do sweat a lot but after a while I avoided use them for gym not because of the sweat but they would constantly popped off my ear if I am doing some cardio and all. That for me is extremely negative point which resulted in the 2 stars drop. I have to constantly push them in my ears and really insist in pushing them in. No with the tear and wears of the past months the stabilisers are good for nothing. They do not help anymore. Another thing I do not like is the fact that battery life kept on decreasing as the months passed by. Brand new was like 2,5-3 hours of audio and 4 hours stand by. Now it is much less like an 1-2 hours audio and 2.5-3 hours stand by. So I would say that the battery life is another negative point and this lead to a drop of 1 additional star because the earbuds are small so it is expected that the battery life would not be that great but the fact they did not allow us to charge on laptops and obliged to always carry around the charger and find a charging outlet which is of great inconvenience if you commuting.
lastly ending this review with a positive point is that the product wire does not get tangled. Well after a few months after purchasing these I noticed they released a new version of the product hopefully it will be better. Would I recommend it? Well yes if you don't mind taking into consideration these negative points.
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on March 6, 2015
I was super excited about these. I love listening to Pandora on my phone while I'm shopping of doing housework and hate having to hold a phone to my ear during calls. The earbuds that came with my phone work and sound great, but I often would catch the cord on something, yanking them out of my ears or my phone. And that's super annoying, let me tell you.
When I first got them, I went grocery shopping and reveled in the freedom I had. I could listen to music and not have to worry about a cumbersome cord! It was awesome! And the sound quality was really good too. I loved them.
However, I found if I wanted to talk on the phone with them, I had to take out one of the buds. They are too sealed around my ear and it made my voice sound really weird inside my head. (I have had two stapedectomies on my ears, though, so that may have something to do with this) I also had to go with one if I was walking around not listening to music, but being prepared to take a call should one come through. These are noise cancelling, so when I walk around with both in, I'm unable to hear anything that's going on around me, even if I'm not using them.
And, when I only have one in, the other inevitably falls down my back or pulls on the other. It's uncomfortable, to say the least. Plus, it seemed like the people on the other side of the phone were having a hard time understanding me a lot.
So, I've bought a different style of wireless headphones and like them a lot better. These aren't going to waste, though. My mom is 90% deaf, and wears hearing aids. However, she likes to be able to listen to her music in the quite hours of the mornings before my dad wakes up. She takes out her aids then, and needs a good strong earbud that can give her good sound. These are perfect for that, so I'm giving them to her.
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