While you can buy Bluetooth headsets alone in a range of colours and styles, when it comes to desk sets — Bluetooth headsets designed not just for mobile use but also for connecting up to desk phones and soft phones, and for unified communication purposes — staid and steady usually rules the roost from a design perspective. Jabra's Go 6470 surprised us then, as while it's definitely a business-centric desk set solution, it's actually rather stylish.
The look of the Go 6470 gives it a great mix point between looking professional without looking too much like a staid and boring business phone set. The base has nicely rounded corners and a matte finish, which means it won't gunge up with fingerprints or dust over time. It's also nicely compact, leaving plenty of desk space for other office accoutrements.
When you first open the Go 6470 box, it's hard not to feel a little overwhelmed. There's the base station itself, a fairly standard Bluetooth headset with pre-installed ear hook, a larger headphone-style optional headset for those who prefer the call centre look, an installation manual and a fold-out installation poster plus chargers for all of the above. Annoyingly, while you've got two types of installation documentation provided, neither are terribly deep in the detail stakes where it counts.
That lack of detail is somewhat made up for by the fact that the Go 6470 ranks amongst the easiest Bluetooth desk sets we've ever had to install. A simple wizard runs you through setting up your choice of desk phone, soft phone and mobile phone on the base station's 2.4-inch QVGA screen, and once installed a very simple icon interface allows you to manage your communication needs quite simply. The Go 6470 will work with headset lifters for desk phones, although depending on the make and model you may need an adapter to get that particular function up and running.
On the Bluetooth side of things, the Go 6470 has a claimed range of up to 100m and features Jabra's take on noise reduction technology, dubbed "NoiseBlackout". It's also stated to reduce sudden noise inputs — and therefore your precious hearing — with what the company calls "Safetone". This drops the volume level if spikes or interference come down the line, although in our tests we hit precious few instances where it was obviously working. Which either means we didn't hit many noise spikes, or it works superbly. It's impossible to tell.
Once we'd installed the Go 6470, we were set to make and take calls from a number of phone sources. One minor caveat here: we were unable to connect to a PC-based softphone without using a USB cable. One is provided, but it's extra desk clutter, and with many professionals using Bluetooth-capable laptops these days it'd be a good inclusion for a "premium" desk set. If you're using a desk phone with a handset lifter you may also need a custom connector in order to get it working.
The touchscreen on the Go 6470 is small, but it's nice and clear, with a large icon for each phone type to let you know which phone's currently in use as well as very obvious menu structures for adding new handsets and adjusting settings. The base station will ring for incoming calls and indicate which line they're going to, and calls can be launched from the touchscreen.
The Bluetooth headset itself isn't that dissimilar to the cheaper Jabra M5390 USB in that it's pretty large and not that attractive. It's also not terribly comfortable as Bluetooth earpieces go. If you don't mind the call centre look, it's easy enough to plug into the headband, which is considerably more comfortable. We were surprised to discover that although this means the ear speaker is further away from your auditory canals, as it's sitting outside rather than inside your ear, there wasn't much difference in call quality, which was generally pretty good. Not quite up to the astonishing noise reduction standard of the Jawbone Prime, but workable in a normal office or home office environment.