Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2: Review, Opinions and Price (2023)
Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 headphones, unbeatable value for money
Satisfactory noise cancellation, long battery life, robust and durable design. It features NFC technology.
Not foldable. Low frequencies may seem too accentuated for some ears.
- Battery:30 hours
- Impedance: 32Ω
- Weight:544 gr
It's simple: the value of the Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 derives from it being the perfect hybrid between a headset with noise-cancelling technology and a good bluetooth headset. In addition, their moderate price makes them very competitive.
This combination is so powerful that some experts have already dubbed them ‘The best headphones on the market' , as far as value for money is concerned. A quorum shared by a large part of the sector, and made vox populi by media such as The Guardian in its technology section.
Compared to the first Plantronics Backbeat Pro, its successors are lighter and smaller. However, they still retain all the advantages, such as easy-to-use controls and the solid, robust construction of the original design that we loved so much.
The only change is the new oval shape of the cups, and we must say this new silhouette doesn't look bad at all. And just a note for the sybarites: the Special Edition version includes NFC technology for easy wireless connection, and a portable case for travel. When you buy these headphones, here is what you will find in the package:
- Carrying case
- User manual
- 3.5mm jack audio cable
- USB cable
The design of the Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 is eclectic, with silver and zebrano wood accents. For purists, this combination may seem out of place, but the truth is that it goes unnoticed. We think it gives a touch of kitsch that may be pleasing to some, and also makes them unique.
They do not stand out for their sobriety, but neither do they have the flashy look that many users are looking for in a high-end music headset. As we've already mentioned, these Plantronics headphones are characterized by their easy-to-use control scheme, covering all essential functions with buttons. But what really caught our attention was their intelligent sensors, that stop and play the audio just by taking off and putting on the headphones.
However, sometimes this cordless technology is too sensitive to movement, and could activate the function even with the headphones on. On the other hand, this function doesn't detract from the “open mic” option, also available on the headset. On the contrary! It keeps the user connected to their surroundings whenever needed, therefore making these headphones more versatile.
Another attribute of the design is comfort, thanks to a high quality padding that is perfectly suited to long listening sessions. Despite their weight, they are hardly noticeable once they are on. One of the most important disadvantages for us comes from their size, since they cannot be folded. This makes their portability difficult, and represents a slight disadvantage when transporting them.
Quality of the Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2
Overall, the Backbeat Pro 2 stand out in terms of quality, especially for their excellent wireless connection. Plantronics headsets are often considered exceptional for their extended range and the low latency they achieve when connected. The former reaches a distance of 20 to 30 meters without interference, and for short distances it has built-in NFC technology, like many cell phones. This wide range of bluetooth wins them a spot on our list of best headphones for TV. These headphones also have excellent active features that make them convenient for different life situations:
- Active noise cancellation on request.
- Listening opening at the push of a button.
- Multipoint technology for device switching.
- Intelligent sensors.
The app called Plantronics Hub discussed below complements the intuitive smart control options, with the ability to link to multiple devices alternately, and the ability to do so with up to two devices at once.
Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 Sound
After testing the Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 headphones, we can affirm that they sound quite good, but without reaching the standards of excellence of other premium models. In addition, the price is quite affordable, which makes them one of the best options in terms of value for money. If you're on a budget yet seek adequate sound, these headphones are for you.
And while it's true that there are other higher-end models with superior sound quality, these headphones achieve a good balance, and have good audio clarity for calls. The good sound balance we are talking about is especially noticeable in the mid and treble range. However, to a more finely tuned ear, this balance is lost with the emphasis on powerful bass, which some might dislike.
In contrast, the Backbeat Pro 2s tolerate high volumes well, and only generate distortion at 100dB. Their SPL sensitivity is less significant than that of other audio systems. The maximum volume they reach is really considerable, but at the cost of the sound quality, which decreases.
For this reason, the stereo effect produced by the ambience generated within the Plantronics headphones themselves is mediocre overall, despite the ANC. Another aspect to take into account is the good passive sound isolation achieved by the headphones. The most significant sound leakage occurs over a considerably wide portion (between 500Hz and 8KHz), but the ordinary exhaust level is generally low, and doesn't generate discomfort in most cases.
Plantronics Backbeat pro 2 noise cancellation
As for the active noise cancellation, it's not the best on the market, but it makes them quite suitable for an average consumer who doesn't require excellence for professional performance.
To give you an idea: the external isolation is superior to that achieved by the RS series of Sennheiser, but doesn't compete with the pedigree and efficiency of Bose in any of its Quiet Comfort models. On the other hand, the “open-mic” button option gives you the possibility to adjust ambient sound in different modes.
In summary, the limitations in noise cancellation capabilities in the case of the Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 affect sound quality to some extent. However, they are not to be dismissed for this reason (especially if you're not a professional in the industry). They are overall quite adequate for average listeners.
Compatibility with other devices
The Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 come with the app Plantronics Hub, which makes it possible to use extra tools exclusive to the product. The application doesn't improve the listening experience but it's useful for certain situations, such as locating the headphones if you lose sight of them, or getting notifications about the battery status.
On the other hand, they can be connected to any device that uses Bluetooth, such as any current model of TV. They also work with almost all cell phones, tablets, computers and consoles, making them suitable for gamers. If you're more old school, no worries: The 3.5mm mini jack cable allows simple connection to any of these devices.
This is another strong point. One of the great advantages of the Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 is the great performance of the battery, which reaches up to 30 hours of life. This continuous playback capability is coupled with optimal NFC synchronization technology that also allows for relatively fast charging (only 2 to 3 hours).
In turn, the headphones are equipped with intelligent sensors and saving features, such as playback while charging, and automatic pause and resume when the battery is fully depleted, making them optimal headphones for travel. The sensors also turn off the headphones when not in use, conserving battery life for up to 6 months. The only drawback? The battery is not removable.
Overall, the Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 are worthwhile. They are the best bluetooth headphones aimed at an average consumer who values quality, design, extras and things well done. We use them in our editorial office, and we find them very convenient to take on trips.
True, they don't fold up and may take up a bit of space in your suitcase, but the battery life, active noise cancellation (perfect for the plane, subway or train) and comfort make them the perfect travel companion. In addition, their multitude of functions and extras are a lot of fun. To conclude, among the features that make these headphones very competitive we highlight:
- Their solid and durable design.
- Very good wireless range.
- A long battery life.
- Very good value for money.
- A satisfying noise isolation that's perfect for enjoying yourself and going your own way.
The Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 is the best budget bluetooth headset. Its price is more than justified: good sound, excellent connectivity, many functions and an attractive design with good materials. It's a golden nugget for lovers of good acoustics. Interested? Find the best prices on Amazon.
We also recommend you check out our review of the Plantronics Voyager 5200 handsfree, and the Plantronics Backbeat Fit II: an affordable, all-round sports headset.