April 19, 2010 | by Chris Smith
BlueAnt has been known as a maker of quality Bluetooth headsets and an innovator in the industry. In that tradition, the BlueAnt Q1 is an attractive headset with voice command features, A2DP streaming audio, multipoint device access, and even an integrated Android application. This headset is pretty stacked so let’s take a closer look and see how it truly performs.
The Q1 is a sleek looking headset made of plastic yet has a “brushed metal” look to it. It really is quite an attractive headset. When on the Q1 blinks the standard Bluetooth blue, but can very conveniently be turned off via the voice commands (that in a second).
It fits comfortable in your ear with it’s soft rubber earpiece, which is one of the things that I liked the most about the headset. This soft rubber allows the Q1 to be worn for hours without too much notice of it. Many headsets that I have used have always either hurt my ears or haven’t fit. The Q1 seems to fit nicely around my ear and after a while you barely notice it at all. The ear hook is made of plastic and the height of the hook is adjustable making the headset fit even better.
The Q1 comes with an AC adapter, USB cable for charging, small and large earbuds, ear hook, and a quick start guide.
Pairing the Q1 with the Motorola DROID was a breeze. I just switched the Q1 on and followed the instructions that played over the headset. My DROID paired with the Q1 in a matter of seconds and I could start using the headset right away for calls or audio.
The sound quality is very good on the Q1 in low to moderate surrounding noise levels and becomes harder to hear in loud situations and I felt like I needed more volume. Calls sounded clear and streaming audio over bluetooth sounded great. I wouldn’t listen to music this way, but for podcasts and spoken word it worked very well. When asking friends how I sounded over the Bluetooth they said that my voice was clear and there wasn’t any static, even in loud areas. This may have to do with the fact that the Q1 uses “voice isolation technology” to make the outgoing audio clearer.
The list of voice commands that you can use with this headset is quite robust. You can answer calls, call back the last number, redial the last number dialed, access settings, turn the phones internal voice commands on or off, check the phone and headset battery life, turn the headset off, and even access a “teach me” menu where you can learn all of the commands. I was impressed with the voice recognition of the Q1 yet I did run into some troubles of not being recognized. They were mostly few and far between and if I tried again with a more exact approach they were usually understood.
The BlueAnt Android application didn’t really have too much to it other than a user guide, tips and tricks, and then a setting to read back text messages over the headset. The text message playback is a nifty feature and was pretty easy to understand even though it was a digital robot voice. I will say that it was awesome text messaging my friend with Android’s voice to text feature and then listening to his text over the Q1.
I would have to say that the Q1 is a solid bluetooth headset. I feel that BlueAnt makes a quality product and is innovating heavily with the voice command integration that works well. The fit of the headset is what impresses me the most; it is one of the only bluetooth headsets that are actually comfortable and I can stand to wear.
The sound quality is well above average but I feel that there could be a little more volume for loud environments. The Android application integration is a nice feature but doesn’t seem to provide too much worth noting other than the handy text message playback.