Riding on the shoulders of its predecessor, the original Aliph Jawbone; comes the second generation Jawbone 2. By adding Noise Assassin technology, a 40% smaller size, and an even cooler, more stylish look to it, the Aliph Jawbone 2 might be the paramount of headsets.
Features and Design
The Aliph Jawbone 2 was designed by the now famous Yves Béhar who has also designed for major labels such as Herman Miller, Nike, Toshiba, and Hewlett Packard just to name a few. Yves also designed the first Jawbone in 2004. The Jawbone 2 has a sleek diamond pattern that runs along the face and hides the power indicator light and buttons for volume control and on/off button for the Noise Sssassin technology which we’ll get to shortly. An improvement over the Jawbone is the addition of several ear hooks that allow the user to have a more comfortable natural fit on their ear. The standout besides the new size of the Jawbone which is only 2- inches long by 0.5-inch wide by 0.5-inch thick and weighing 0.35 ounce is the leather wrapped ear hook options. If leather isn’t your cup of tea, don’t worry, there are some nice black wire ear hooks included. If you’re not the ear hook kind of person, there were several different ear inserts included to allow for the most comfortable fit for as many people as possible. On the reverse side which will rest on your cheek is the little rubber nub that detects your voice and gives the Jawbone its clever name.
Testing and Use
The Jawbone 2 is designed to give you over 4 hours of talk time which in our tests certainly came true, as well as standby time of over 8 days. Jawbone claims the range of the headset from the cell phone goes to a maximum of 33 feet (10 meters). In our initial tests held inside a concrete building, once we hit about 37 feet away we lost signal and had to return closer to the phone to resume. So the 33 feet measure is pretty accurate. The original Jawbone has noise canceling technology called Noiseshield and the new Jawbone 2 has NoiseAssassin which is designed to help clear out the ambient noise that most of us find in the office, car, or while talking outside. Our first tests were in the car with the radio at a low volume and the window down about an inch. We could clearly hear the person on the line and recorded the audio from the receiving party. We were surprised at the clarity and happy with the results. The same applied when we were walking thru a mall on the weekend. If you’ve ever been to a mall on a weekend, you know there is plenty of ambient noise all around and again, we were not disappointed. Something we were disappointed in was the cracking sound the Jawbone 2 makes when adjusting volume or turning on/off the Noise Assasin feature. It literally sounds like it could crack open any second. We contacted Aliph to make sure we hadn’t received a defective unit, but were assured that everything was fine and that was normal. Even though the buttons can be hard to use at times, we hit them about 1000 times to prove them wrong, but our test unit tolerated the abuse without problem. The Jawbone 2 is compatible with Bluetooth 2.0 ,1.1, and 1.0 devices, but itself uses Bluetooth 1.1 technology. We were hoping to see Bluetooth 2.0 in this version but this at least gives us something to look forward to in the future.
The Aliph Jawbone 2’s smaller size and noise canceling features will certainly impress – as will its stand-out-styling. The charger which comes included has a proprietary plug and we were hoping Aliph would have done away with, so make sure not to misplace it. Before buying the Jawbone, as with any earpiece, it’s not a bad idea to try one on first just to make sure you can live with it; at the top tier of pricing for this type of gadget, it would be a killjoy to have it not fit correctly.
• Great design
• Noise Canceling is impressive
• Can use with or w/out ear hook
• Proprietary charger
• Makes crunchy noise when pressing buttons
• Bluetooth 1.1