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How Do I Choose the Best RJ-9 Headset?

By Mal Baxter
Updated: Feb 19, 2024

If you would like to go hands-free, and use your microphone headset with a telephone, you may require the use of an RJ-9 headset. This type of product is so characterized because it hooks up to the telephone with a special RJ-9 jack, the type of modular jack you see when you unplug a typical telephone handset cord from its base. Numerous varieties of telephone headsets are designed to plug into this type of port. These can include the single-earpiece and the double-earpiece types, which may feature a microphone boom. Similar to a small wireless lozenge device, they may attach using ear hooks or a larger band that wraps around the head; knowing how these options will affect performance will help you make the right call.

The RJ-9 jack takes its name from registered jack, indicating it lists within United States Code of Federal Regulations. This is a common handset jack that supports four positions with four conducting pins. It can fit into numerous products by pressing a small locking lever on top.

Characteristic of the RJ-9 standard, one method allows users to couple their favorite computer-style headset with an office phone. This can be achieved with an adapter cord. Such accessories can port computer headset audio jacks and output them into telephone jacks. Numerous RJ-9 headset products have entered the market to answer demand.

A smaller unit may be fixed with a stem that hooks over the ear. Like its wireless cousin, this unobtrusive type may fit comfortably and provide an in-line control for voice mute or volume. A microphone boom may direct the pickup toward the jaw to pick up the speaker's voice. Keep in mind that the smaller the form factor, the longer it can be worn without noticeable discomfort, but the more noise it's apt to pick up.

One common design uses a single earphone or earbud, attached to an earhook or fixed to an adjustable band that wraps the head. A variation on this is the binaural or double earphone set. Both types may feature a different type of boom that extends the microphone toward the mouth; these include varieties such as sound tube, the midsize, and the flex boom. This type of headset is also seen in wireless varieties.

In monaural, or single earphones, a determining factor may be whether the earpiece is convertible. This is to say that it can be worn on either ear. RJ-9 headset products that rely on wired communication can be operated for long periods. They may also be extended for greater range with adapter cords. Wires tether users to their desks; the longer an RJ-9 headset must be worn, the more comfortable it should be.

Further considerations for an RJ-9 headset include whether you need an ability to take conference calls. Most RJ-9 headset products are capable of handling conventional telecommunications networks and Web-based Voice over Internet Protocols (VoIP). How well yours will perform noise cancellation may influence its bandwidth performance. You might also want to see how easily its parts can be replaced. Headset microphone booms are notorious for snapping off unexpectedly, such as when a user attempts to walk away while still tethered.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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