If you want to avoid inserting earbuds in your ears, check out the LG HBS-250 Bluetooth stereo headset.

The LG HBS-250 headset consists of two ear muffs and an adjustable wire connecting them. The muffs lie against your ears, secured in place with ear loops.

Although the LG HBS-250 headphones look a bit like humongous button earrings, the ear muffs are padded and comfortable. The fit is ideal for small ears, which means that folks with extra-large ears may find the fit too tight.

Unfortunately, every time we donned the LG HBS-250 headphones, we had to fiddle with the ear loops to get a secure attachment, and there still tended to be a little flapping movement when we jerked our head.

Music sounded good over the LG HBS-250, with great bass and warm tones overall. The ear muff on the right side contains all the controls. We especially liked the music enhancement feature: press the EQ button on the top of the ear piece to toggle between five equalizer settings: Normal, Rock, Vocal, Bass, and 3D Surround.

Regrettably, the EQ button is a pain to control because it lies between the Volume Up and Volume Down buttons, and all three buttons are small and difficult to distinguish; we had to fumble around the top of the LG HBS-250 headset (or take it off and look at the thing) until we got a feel for the EQ button's location. Similarly, the jog dial - which handles play/pause/stop, track skipping, and so on - feels small and cramped.

We had no problem, however, with the LG HBS-250's call button. To answer, end, reject a call, or the like, you tap the panel on the side of the headset. No scrambling around for this one. And phone conversations generally sounded clear (especially at this end), though one caller complained about some choppiness during a conversation. Loud music in the background proved to be distracting, too.

During range tests, calls sounded excessively crackly as we approached the range limit (roughly 33 feet for Bluetooth Class 2). The headset unceremoniously dropped one call.

LG HBS-250: Specs

  • Bluetooth 2.0 headphones
  • Bluetooth Profile: HSP, HFP, A2DP and AVRCP
  • Talk Time: 10 hours
  • Music Playback Time: 8 hours
  • Standby Time: 320 hours
  • 40g
  • Bluetooth 2.0 headphones
  • Bluetooth Profile: HSP, HFP, A2DP and AVRCP
  • Talk Time: 10 hours
  • Music Playback Time: 8 hours
  • Standby Time: 320 hours
  • 40g

OUR VERDICT

Consider the LG HBS-250 if you want a headset whose earpieces sit against your ears - not inside them. You can expect reasonably good audio quality as well, particularly on the music front. But if you're concerned about your image, consider this: one unkind observer described the headphones as looking like dorky Frisbees.

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