The Ambeo Smart Headset
Although no longer being manufactured, the Ambeo Smart Headset (made by Sennheiser) is still available in the marketplace and provides an inexpensive and compact binaural headset solution, with a purchase price as low as $50 US. This is a complete “plug-and-play” solution, not requiring any additional cables or interfaces.
The primary drawback of using the Ambeo headset is that the microphones are rather hissy, with a high internal “self noise” that is around 15 decibels louder than that of the “super low noise” mics that are used in the High-Fidelity Binaural Headset. This becomes particularly significant in quiet outdoor situations (such as on a calm morning in a remote wild setting) when the internal mic noise may not only be annoying but is likely to be loud enough to cover-up faint and distant bird sounds. In addition, the flexible ear-tips that are inserted into each ear slightly muffle one’s normal hearing, which is not optimal.
If you wonder what 15 decibels of increased noise sounds like, below is an audio demonstration.
While the high self-noise of the mics makes the Ambeo headset less attractive to those who desire and appreciate high-fidelity sound, the low price and compact plug-and-play form-factor is very appealing indeed. So, if you want to obtain an inexpensive plug-and-play binaural headset solution that “works OK,” then by all means grab one while the Ambeo is still available (yes, this item could very well disappear from the marketplace at any moment!).