Desktop speakers have begun to infiltrate this Bluetooth market, with products from LG and Nokia competing with the likes of Altec Lansing’s T515 for streaming your tunes from your phone to speakers. Each has a hook of some sort, but none is so dramatic as Altec Landsing’s wireless pendant and ear buds disguised as a hidden remote. Unfortunately, this doesn’t make the unit as useful for phone calls as it is for music.
To use the headset, you’ll have to insert a set of earbuds to attach the pendant to your shirt. Then you’re limited by a relatively short connection radius of about 20 feet; go further and you’ll get static or a broken connection altogether. Within these constraints, however, the headset performs well and is a better call solution than the slightly noisy speaker phone function of the primary unit.
For music reproduction, the T515 isn’t a bad unit. It has a relatively robust dynamic range for such small speakers, and although we heard some distortion at high volumes, the effect was similar to other desktop speakers of similar size. Frustratingly, the track selection controls on the pendant work only when docked with the main unit, so it can’t operate as a remote. You can use your phone to remotely select tracks, however.
We do like the option of powering the T515 either with an included AC cord or four AAA batteries. No matter your power source, the headset pendant will automatically recharge when docked – though you can recharge it through your notebook with the included USB cable.
Altech Lansing T515; $149; www.altechlansing.com