If you're out and about listening to headphones and someone calls, it's much more convenient to simply speak into your headphones than take them off and use your phone. Since almost every pair of headphones now have a microphone and controls built-in, it's easier than ever to take a phone call wherever you are. While earpiece-style Bluetooth headsets are still quite common with people who use the phone a lot, we haven't reviewed many yet, so in this article, we'll look at regular Bluetooth headphones with good microphones as well.
We’ve reviewed over 200 Bluetooth headsets so far, and below you’ll find our top picks for the best Bluetooth headsets for phone calls. Also check our recommendations for the overall best wireless Bluetooth headphones, the best earbuds with a mic, and the best wireless gaming headsets we've tested so far.
The best Bluetooth headset for phone calls that we've tested to date is the Bose 700 Headphones Wireless. These Bluetooth over-ears look futuristic, especially alongside the rest of Bose’s relatively conservative-looking lineup, and feel very well-built. Their intuitive control scheme uses a mix of physical and touch-sensitive commands. The battery life of just under 21 hours should get you through a couple of long days at the office without issue.
Recording quality is good, especially for a pair of headphones that use an integrated mic. Your voice will sound loud, full-bodied, and clear, all without the need for a dedicated and bulky boom microphone. Background noise handling is where this headset truly shines, though, as its powerful noise gate processor does an excellent job of isolating your voice from the clatter and chatter of a busy office or any other loud environment.
On the downside, their sound profile also isn’t quite as well-balanced as the rest of the company’s lineup and can’t be adjusted in the Bose Music app, which is a disappointment at this price point. In addition, their motion-sensing auto-off timer is a little on the sensitive side. Ultimately, however, these headphones are great for making calls, as their integrated microphone performance is among the best we’ve tested so far, and they look and feel very premium.
If you want a pair of over-ears for phone calls that have easier to use controls, get the Jabra Elite 85h. Their microphone doesn't perform as well as the Bose 700 Headphones Wireless, but their physical controls are easier-to-use, and they have much longer battery life. They take just under three hours to charge, but they last 34 hours, which is excellent. Their out-of-the-box sound profile is very well-balanced, and, unlike the Bose, their companion app gives access to a graphic EQ. While their integrated microphone isn't as good as the one on the Bose, it still performs fairly well for Bluetooth headphones, and your voice should be clear and understandable. Unfortunately, your voice will get lost in noisy environments.
If you want the best microphone possible on a pair of Bluetooth over-ears, get the Bose, but if you prefer physical controls and a longer battery, but still want a decent microphone, go for the Jabra.
The best mono Bluetooth headset for phone calls that we've tested so far is the Plantronics Voyager 5200 Bluetooth Headset. This Bluetooth mono headset is well-built, with a silicone and plastic construction that feels like it’ll take a few accidental drops without any major damage. Its control scheme is also pretty easy to get used to, with physical buttons for all essential functions within easy reach. Multi-device pairing is an added bonus, especially if you constantly switch between making calls through your phone and computer.
Its boom microphone does an excellent job of isolating your voice from background chatter and ambient noise, which is really helpful if you work in a loud environment. Thanks to its specially-calibrated sound profile, people that you’re speaking to will sound clear, full, and distortion-free. The dedicated Plantronics Hub app doesn’t allow you to fine-tune that listening experience, but it does provide handy configuration options for handling phone calls, such as automatically answering or rejecting a call based on if you’re wearing the headset.
Unfortunately, its microphone recording quality is disappointing, as your voice will sound muffled and a little dark. On the flip side, its 6.4-hour battery life should be enough to get you through a day at work if you're only using it to take calls, especially in conjunction with the device's standby mode. Ultimately, this is a good choice if you’re looking for a mono headset for dedicated office use.
The best wireless earbuds for phone calls we've tested so far are the Jabra Elite 65e Wireless. These wireless in-ears use a stable neckband design and feel very well-built thanks to a flexible headband and thick, flat audio cables. They have a surprisingly feature-dense control scheme, with physical buttons for calling and microphone muting within quick and easy reach. Their earbud fit should ensure that you won’t encounter any of the soreness common to in-ear headphones, even during long days at the office.
Recording quality is decent, and your voice should sound full-bodied and natural. Their microphone position is somewhat unique compared to other earbud offerings in being close to the mouth, so they do a pretty good job of isolating your voice from irritating background noise. Swapping between listening to your computer and phone is a hassle-free process since they support multi-device pairing. They’re not a bad choice for music, as they have an impressive ANC system and punchy sound profile that can be tailored to your liking via a graphic EQ in the Jabra Sound+ app.
Unfortunately, their 8.5-hour battery life is a little disappointing, as it’ll only get you through at least one instance of the daily grind. They also can’t be used with an audio cable, so you’re out of luck if you forget to charge them up. With that said, these are a highly versatile, feature-packed set of in-ears, and are a great fit for frequent office use.
If you like the ultra-portability of truly wireless headphones, get the Jabra Evolve 65t. They aren't as comfortable as the Jabra Elite 65e Wireless, and their microphone performance isn't quite as good, but their truly wireless design makes them much more portable. Their out-of-the-box sound profile is fairly well-balanced, and their companion app gives you access to a graphic EQ. If you use your headphones for calls while connected to a PC, they come with a UC-certified USB dongle for PC to help with their mic performance and they're even available in a model that's optimized for plug-and-play use with Microsoft Skype for Business. Unfortunately, like with most truly wireless headphones, their microphone performance is only okay, and your voice will likely sound thin and difficult to hear in even moderately loud environments.
If you want more comfortable Bluetooth in-ears with a better microphone, get the Elite 65e, but if you prefer the extreme portability of truly wireless headphones, go for the Evolve 65t.
The best wireless Bluetooth headset for phone calls in the budget category that we've tested so far is the Samsung U Flex. These neckband-style in-ears are decently comfortable and feature easy-to-use controls on the neckband itself. The integrated microphone is also built into the neckband, making it easy to move the mic closer to your mouth in noisy environments.
The recording quality of the microphone is quite decent, and while your voice will be slightly muffled, it will be fairly detailed and easy to understand. Its noise handling is only decent, but again, thanks to their neckband design, you can lift the mic closer to your mouth in loud situations. Their out-of-the-box sound profile is decently well-balanced and should be suitable for a fairly wide range of genres.
Unfortunately, while they have a dedicated companion app that is full of features including a graphic EQ, presets, room effects, and more, these features are only available when used with a Samsung device. While the app is available for other Android devices, it's nearly useless and provides almost no additional features.
07/14/2020: Added Plantronics Voyager 5200 Bluetooth Headset as 'Best Mono Bluetooth Headset for Phone Calls'.
05/14/2020: Minor text and structure changes; no change in recommendations.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best Bluetooth headsets for phone calls for most people. We factor in the price (a cheaper headset wins over pricier a one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (nothing that's too hard to find or out of stock everywhere).
If you would like to choose for yourself, here is the list of all our Bluetooth headphones, ranked by how they perform for phone calls. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There are no perfect headphones. Personal taste, preference, and listening habits will matter more in your selection.