We know you already look great in your headset, but every outfit could use some accessories. Luckily, we’ve got all kinds of add-ons that can take your device to the next level. We compiled a list of the most popular types of accessories, so you can learn everything you need to know about maximizing your headset’s functionality. If you’re interested in comfort add-ons, remote answering, adapters, busy lights, or replacement parts for your headset, this article is for you.
Why doesn’t my headset come with this stuff already?
If you’re wondering why headsets don’t come readily equipped with all of these things, you’re not alone. Some of those accessories seem like they should be right there in the box already. Item by item, here’s the reasoning:
- Comfort add-ons: Most over-the-head headsets have some sort of soft ear cushion, most headbands are at least partially adjustable, and most on-the-ear headsets are compact enough to not cause discomfort. Lots of headset wearers find that the standard configuration of their device is plenty comfortable as it is; we separate these add-ons because they simply aren’t useful to everyone. However, we do carry a few models that come with more customizable comfort features. We’ll dive into those later.
- Remote answering with an EHS cable: In order to come with remote answering, your headset would need technology that syncs up with that of your phone. That would require headset manufacturers to have a strong understanding of the inner workings of the phones they’re trying to pair with. Unfortunately, most phone companies hold that information close to their chests. Their compromise is the electronic hookswitch, which acts as a middle man; this headset accessory allows phones and headsets to communicate without the headset makers being tuned in to phone company secrets.
- Remote answering with a lifter: You won’t find a remote answering lifter included in the box with your headset because it would be impossible to ensure compatibility. These accessories need to be compatible with your headset and your phone; we know what headsets our Customers order, but there’s no way to know how many of them use Cisco vs. Avaya vs. all the other phone brands out there.
- Adapters: This reasoning is the same as the one above. Since we aren’t privy to Customers’ existing device situations, we aren’t able to ensure that any adapter we provide will actually work for everyone.
- Busy lights: Like comfort add-ons, not everyone needs a busy light. A couple headsets have one included, but most don’t; many manufacturers don’t want to incorporate a feature that would up the cost of the device for everyone, even though only select Customers are using it.
- Replacement pieces: This one is somewhat self explanatory. We don’t send replacement pieces because there aren’t a lot of situations where you’d need them. We also work with the knowledge that headsets tend to be durable.
A breakdown of headset accessory types
If a standard headset configuration just doesn’t sit right, you can find a variety of products that will help. Whether you prefer a little extra cushioning, or you need some sizing adjustments to get the proper fit, you’ll find a headset accessory that does the trick.
For over-the-head headset users, options like ear pads can make for a more enjoyable wearing experience. They come in a variety of sizes and materials, so you’ll probably find one that suits you. Whether you want a foam ear pad (like this one by Leitner) or a leatherette one (like this Sennheiser product), there are options out there for you.
If you’re using an on-the-ear device, there are two main accessories to keep you comfortable. The first is ear tip replacements. They come in different sizes, so you’re guaranteed to have a secure fit that isn’t straining your ears. You can also purchase different sizes of ear loops (that little plastic piece that wraps around the back of your ear) that provide the same benefits as the tips, but for the outside of your ear rather than the inside. Brands like Plantronics sell “fit kits” that come with both of these alternate sizing options.
Remote Answering Accessories
Remote answering is a favorite feature among many headset users. It’s the perfect supplement to a wireless headset; without it, you’ll be able to leave your workstation during a call, but you won’t be able to answer or hang up the phone. By adding a remote answering headset accessory, you can achieve all of that functionality up to hundreds of feet from your headset base.
The first option for this category is a lifter, like this one by Plantronics. It’s compatible with desk phones that rely on lifting pressure from the receiver to answer a call and applying it again to end the call. A lifter will physically lift your telephone from the receiver and then lower it at the touch of a button. As long as you’re within range, no trips back to your desk will be necessary.
The second way to get remote answering with a headset accessory is by using an electronic hookswitch (EHS) and EHS cables. Rather than manually starting and ending calls like the lifter does, a hookswitch helps devices communicate to achieve the same functionality.
The device itself is connected to both the phone and headset base with EHS cables. When the phone rings, it tells the hookswitch. The hookswhich tells the headset base which tells the headset itself. The headset will indicate an incoming call, and you can answer from a distance. Check out our hookswitch and EHS cable options here.
Adapters are a way to connect a headset to an otherwise incompatible port. Some are more universal, while others allow for a connection between two specific devices.
This 2.5mm to 3.5mm adapter is an example of the former. It takes your corded Leitner headset and makes it compatible with any cell phone that has a headset jack. However, this Plantronics A10 Adapter Cord is more specialized, as it hooks up a Plantronics H series headset with a Polaris compatible phone.
Adapters are great for the corded headset user who wants to switch what device their headset is connected to. It allows for functionality that a corded headset wouldn’t otherwise have, such as smartphone connectivity.
The cord and plug that connect your headset base to an outlet also fall into the adapter category. Rather than connecting two devices (like a cell phone and a headset), it connects your headset to a power source. Headsets generally come with this form of adapter, but if you lose it, there are plenty of replacement options available on Headsets.com, like this Leitner cord or this Jabra one.
Busy lights are great for headset wearers who work in a busier office setting. They let coworkers know when you’re on a call and that they need to steer clear.
A select few headsets come with a built-in busy light. The Jabra Engage 75, for example, has a red light on the ear piece that will illuminate when a call is active. However, having a busy light directly incorporated into the headset is certainly not the norm.
If you’ve got pretty much any other headset, and you want to ward off talkative coworkers when you’re on calls, a headset accessory like the Busy Buddy is a great call. This device will listen for voices on your call and light up red when it hears them. You can even switch it to the Do Not Disturb setting, which will turn the light purple. It’s got an adhesive base, so you can position it just about anywhere.
If you want to avoid interruptions while taking calls, a busy light is worth the investment.
If you happen to damage part of your headset, and it isn’t covered by a warranty (warranty period is up, the damage is a result of user error, etc.), don’t stress! You can find all sorts of replacement parts on our website.
Replacement headset pieces range from ear pads to full devices, but here are some of the most common ones that you’ll encounter:
Replacement headset batteries: Not every headset has a fully replaceable battery, but if yours does, you can pick up a new one through the accessories page.
Replacement comfort elements: If your headband or ear cushions get too worn out for comfort, or you accidentally misplace your earloops, there’s a chance you’ll be able to find a replacement piece. You can replace an entire headband, a single ear cushion, or the ear tip of your on-the-ear device fairly easily and usually inexpensively.
Replacement devices and device components: If you find yourself stuck with a headset with a non-functioning microphone, you may be able to find a replacement mic. You can also find a new charging stand or even an entire replacement headset (if you have your base but lost your headset)! As you could probably guess, these pieces are more expensive than the other accessories we’ve covered, but hey, it beats buying a brand new headset.
Summing it up
Accessories can be an awesome way to enhance your productivity and increase your headset’s functionality. No matter what capability you’re looking for in a headset, there’s a good chance you can find a headset accessory that helps get you there.
If you want some help figuring out what add-ons are best for you, our Headset Advisors are happy to help you accessorize. Just call 1-800-HEADSETS (432-3738) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.