Hong Kong Tech Phooey

a tech junkie from Hong Kong

My Gears + Review – Sony Ericsson HBH-IS800 on iPhone 3Gs


Ever since I got my iPhone 3Gs, been wanting to get a new pair of Bluetooth headset to listen to my podcasts as my Plantronics Voyager 855 finally gave up on me (the connection on the detachable earpiece cable worn off), though still work on mono.  Been shopping around this past weekend and didn’t do much research into what the newest BT headsets have to offer (now this is dumb).

The design of the Sony Ericsson HBH-IS800 caught my eyes and I ditched out the dough right away, purely shopping on impulse and this is where the problem starts…..(only apply to iPhone 3G or 3Gs)

IMG_0686

IMG_0688

For the sound quality, the HBH-IS800 is considered one of the best BT headsets I’ve used (Plantronics Voyager 855, Philips SBH7100, Jabra BT8010 and Plantronics Pulsar 590A). The design is neat and clean with one button controlling practically everything, see pic below.

IMG_0689

IMG_0691

The headset comes with a clip for you to add onto the headset cable so to allow you to clip it to your shirt collar or jacket.

IMG_0690

So the sound quality is good and the design neat, what’s the catch then….

Well, two things.  First, the charger (no mini USB plug here, it’s Sony Ericsson proprietary plug) connects to the headset via the right earplug and it is really flimsy.

IMG_0692

Secondly, once paired up with the iPhone 3Gs or iPhone 3G, one will noticed that there is NO volume control on the headset and one cannot even turn the volume up or down via the iPhone while running the iPod application as the HBH-IS800 utilizes what so called Automatic Volume Adjustment (it automatically adjust the volume of the headset).  Now this is bogus.  How could this be possible….one has to wonder what those guys at SE are thinking.

Another minor thing I noted this afternoon is that the headset can only be paired with one audio device at any time, now yet another bummer.

To close this out, I don’t think I would recommend this headset (for iPhone users) especially when one cannot adjust the volume on the iPhone (that is if you are using it with the iPhone runing OS 3.0.

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July 28, 2009 - Posted by | Accessories, Apple, Bluetooth, Gadgets n Gizmos, iPhone, iPod, My Gears, Review | , , , , ,

23 Comments »

  1. I use this headset with a SE w960i walkman phone and I can adjust the volume normally with the volume buttons on the phone. Your problem might be a compatability issue?

    Comment by SP | July 29, 2009 | Reply

  2. Pretty cool post. I just came by your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed browsing your posts.

    Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon!

    Comment by nick | August 4, 2009 | Reply

  3. I wish I would have read before I bought them. It does not work on Iphones unless you enjoy blaring volume.

    Thanks again Apple.

    Comment by James | August 14, 2009 | Reply

  4. Any chance this will get fixed (by Sony or apple) soon?

    Any work- around?

    Comment by Mrglaw | August 16, 2009 | Reply

    • My gut feeling is not. No way for Sony Ericsson to upgrade the headset. Don’t think it’s an Apple issue.

      Comment by hongkongphooey | August 16, 2009 | Reply

      • Ok. HoW about a hack?

        Comment by Mrglaw | August 16, 2009

  5. Can I use it on apple ipod togther with a bluetooth dongle??
    How abt the volume, can I adjust it via the ipod??

    Comment by Jimmy | August 21, 2009 | Reply

  6. Any luck finding another good bt stereo headset for 3gs?

    Comment by Richard | October 7, 2009 | Reply

    • Actually the SE HBH-IS800 turns out to be a very good pair. Loving it so far.

      Comment by hongkongphooey | October 7, 2009 | Reply

      • You still can’t adjust the volume? Can you skip tracks?

        Comment by Richard | October 8, 2009

  7. i have a pair of hbh is800 and aw595 phone and i cant get them to work with the radio please help

    Comment by mick | October 7, 2009 | Reply

  8. Not seeing your advice earlier, I have bought it. Anyway, my HBH iS 800 doesn’t connect with my iphone 3GS? Would appreciate tips on how do so…

    Comment by edng8 | November 4, 2009 | Reply

  9. of course this is an apple issue, Apple are too stupid and did not manage to implement AVCR in the 3 years of the iphone existence. Apple are to blame and not sony. only downside of this is the battery life, and probably the none multipoint support

    other than that its a cool device

    Comment by Just_a_JohnDoe | March 28, 2010 | Reply

  10. Hi, My name is Murat from Turkey, I interest in that device but its price is about 90 usd, well May ı learn that how much is it there?

    Comment by Murat | April 28, 2010 | Reply

  11. Hello everyone. Just letting ya’ll know that the Apple 4.0 software has fixed the volume control issue. I have an iPhone 3GS. I just installed the new 4.0 firmware and tried paring my HBH-IS800 ear buds again and now the volume control works!! It works on phone, Pandora and iPod.

    Comment by Jared | June 25, 2010 | Reply

    • Thanks for the info.

      Comment by hongkongphooey | June 25, 2010 | Reply

    • Is that true?
      I will get it rigth now.

      Comment by eji | July 24, 2010 | Reply

  12. Hi!
    I’m going to get this headset as soon as possible (http://www.sonyericsson.com/cws/products/accessories/overview/hbh-is800?lc=it&cc=it#view=specifications) but just now I have a doubt: does it get connected directly to iphone bt or does it need an unit attacched at iphone jack (I mean like in this photo http://d.hatena.ne.jp/egyo2nd/20090316/1237138633). I know it’s a stupid question and I think the answer is the first, but I’d like to be sure because I need it. Thanks,

    Veronica

    Comment by Veronica | November 9, 2010 | Reply

  13. Hi!
    I’m going to get this headset as soon as possible (http://www.sonyericsson.com/cws/prod…specifications) but just now I have a doubt: does it get connected directly to iphone bt or does it need an unit attacched at iphone jack (I mean like in this photo http://d.hatena.ne.jp/egyo2nd/20090316/1237138633). I know it’s a stupid question and I think the answer is the first, but I’d like to be sure because I need it.
    The volume control should work properly now on ios4, doesn’t it?
    Thanks,

    Veronica

    Comment by Veronica | November 10, 2010 | Reply

  14. Sorry for repost, I could not see my comment :(
    I attached another question, too.
    Thanks.

    Comment by Veronica | November 10, 2010 | Reply

  15. hi just got myne from ebay ppl in HK , i got Iphone and it works well but i need to change the sixe of the ear buds and its not easy.
    any ideas or help
    thanks

    Comment by daak | January 24, 2011 | Reply


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