TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Kool Tools: Etymotic etyBLU Headset

Volume Number: 25
Issue Number: 06
Column Tag: Kool Tools

Kool Tools: Etymotic etyBLU Headset

by Dennis Sellers

The folks at Etymotic say their etyBLU ( was the first Bluetooth headset that features a connecting noise-canceling boom microphone. Described as a "dual mode" Bluetooth headset, it comes with a noise canceling boom microphone (the Blumaxx Quick-Connect Microphone, which enables callers to be heard clearly and understood) and an internal microphone. You can use the latter independently simply by unplugging the boom microphone. As for the BluMaxx, it gives you up to 25 decibels more noise cancellation compared to the internal microphone.

When it's connected correctly, the opening at the tip of the microphone is closest to the mouth and the opening at the middle of the microphone tip faces away from the mouth. You can connect or disconnect the Blumaxx without disconnecting a call.

At US$129, the etyBLU isn't inexpensive. Of course, you're paying for two microphones. Why two? According to Etymotic, the combination of an in-ear noise-isolating earphone and a boom mic provides better sound quality and clearer communication at both ends of a conversation. That said, the headset is designed for taking and making phone calls, not for playing your tunes.

The etyBLU weighs less than .5 ounces and has a range of around 30 feet. It boasts up to seven hours of talk time and up to 100 hours of standby time. It takes 2-3 hours to fully charge the headset; you can get an 80 percent charge after one hour.

Unlike Apple's iPhone Bluetooth Headset, which has a foam-covered earbud, the etyBLU uses an in-canal earpiece. It comes with two sets of small and regular-sized triple flanges, and one foam alternativeNote whose ear tip fits snugly in the ear. So snugly that some people find it uncomfortable. But it's great at blocking out noise.

In fact, it's so good at it that you should take the etyBLU off when you're not using it so you can hear the world around you. For that reason, be very careful when you're using it while driving (and many folks will use it for just that to allow hands-free conversation) as you won't be able to hear through one ear.

The earpiece in the etyBLU headset has a special filter that smoothes the frequency response and prevents earwax from entering the earphone. The filter is located at the end of the earphone and is visible when the ear-tip is removed. You should change the filter if loudness decreases or the sound quality declines. Filters aren't reusable, but the etyBLU comes with an extra earpiece filter and filter replacement tool.

There are two volume buttons located on the side of the etyBLU and one port on its bottom. The port is where you can plug in an included USB charging cable or the boom mic.

Etymotic also tosses in a metal ear-hook, which can be used for extra stability, and a foam windscreen.

The etyBLU has a slim black design with a silver multifunction button that calls to mind (probably intentionally) the Apple Bluetooth Headset. It measures 1.8 inches long by 0.5 inches wide by 0.5 inches thick. There's also an LED indicator light underneath the button.

The etyBLU offers features you'd expect in such a headset: the ability to answer, end, and reject calls, last number redial, voice command support, call waiting support, three-way calling support, and the ability to transfer a call to the handset and vice versa.

When you're ready to use the etyBLU headset, it's discoverable for five minutes after you power it on. To pair it with a device, such as an iPhone, you:

  • Turn the phone OFF and then back ON.
  • Turn on the mobile phone's Bluetooth function.
  • Press and hold the Multi-Function Button (MFB) for five seconds. The blue LED will flash rapidly when ready for pairing.The etyBLU stays in pairing mode for five minutes.
  • Activate the search for BT and/or audio devices on the phone When the etyBLU is found, the phone will display "etyBLU." Scroll to it and press OK to confirm pairing.
  • If a passkey/password is requested, enter 0000.

The etyBLU is compliant with Bluetooth Core Specification 2.1, Headset 1.1 and Handsfree 1.5 profiles. It comes with a two-year warranty.

Dennis Sellers is a long time journalist. He started in the newspaper business, but has been in the online journalism business for the past 15 years. He's the editor/publisher of Macsimum News (


Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Adobe Acrobat Reader 15.009.20069 - View...
Adobe Acrobat Reader allows users to view PDF documents. You may not know what a PDF file is, but you've probably come across one at some point. PDF files are used by companies and even the IRS to... Read more
Adobe Acrobat Pro 15.009.20069 - Powerfu...
Acrobat Pro DC is available only as a part of Adobe Creative Cloud, and can only be installed and/or updated through Adobe's Creative Cloud app. Adobe Acrobat Pro DC with Adobe Document Cloud... Read more
Path Finder 7.2 - Powerful, award-winnin...
Become a master of file management with Path Finder. Take full control over your file system. Save your time: compare and synchronize folders, view hidden files, use Dual Pane and full keyboard... Read more
Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Ea...
Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth is a new science-fiction-themed entry into the award-winning Civilization series. Set in the future, global events have destabilized the world leading to a... Read more
ForkLift 2.6.6 - Powerful file manager:...
ForkLift is a powerful file manager and ferociously fast FTP client clothed in a clean and versatile UI that offers the combination of absolute simplicity and raw power expected from a well-executed... Read more
Microsoft Remote Desktop 8.0.21 - Connec...
With Microsoft Remote Desktop, you can connect to a remote PC and your work resources from almost anywhere. Experience the power of Windows with RemoteFX in a Remote Desktop client designed to help... Read more
OnyX 3.1.0 - Maintenance and optimizatio...
OnyX is a multifunctional utility for OS X. It allows you to verify the startup disk and the structure of its System files, to run miscellaneous tasks of system maintenance, to configure the hidden... Read more
Spotify - Stream music, crea...
Spotify is a streaming music service that gives you on-demand access to millions of songs. Whether you like driving rock, silky R&B, or grandiose classical music, Spotify's massive catalogue puts... Read more
ExpanDrive - Access cloud storag...
ExpanDrive builds cloud storage in every application, acts just like a USB drive plugged into your Mac. With ExpanDrive, you can securely access any remote file server directly from the Finder or... Read more
Markly 1.5.3 - Create measurement and de...
Markly is a measurement and design-spec plugin/extension for Photoshop and Sketch. It is made for modern Web designers and app front-end developers. You can add specification marks simply by clicking... Read more

Max Ammo - Tricks and tips to help you l...
Max Ammo is a smart cover shooter in which you have to fight back against the Reptor Empire, a race of alien lizards who have invaded your home. You'll have to tap to shoot, swipe to get into cover, and upgrade your gear if you plan on surviving... | Read more »
Balls & Holes - Tips and tricks to h...
Balls & Holes is a gorgeous new endless runner that challenges you to make it as far up a mountain as possible before inevitably being sliced into a load of gooey bits. Making this task more difficult are both the wide variety of balls that... | Read more »
Balloony Land offers a fresh twist on th...
Balloony Land by Palringo offers a fresh twist on the match three genre and is out now on iOS and Android. First-off, you'll be popping balloons instead of crushing candy and the balloons will float up and fill the empty spaces instead of dropping... | Read more »
Graphic - vector illustration and design...
Graphic - vector illustration and design 1.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Productivity Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Autodesk Graphic is a powerful full-featured vector drawing and illustration application right in... | Read more »
Sago Mini Babies (Education)
Sago Mini Babies 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Introducing the Sago Mini babies. Boys and girls love caring for these adorable characters. Feed Robin her favorite mush... | Read more »
PAUSE - Relaxation at your fingertip (H...
PAUSE - Relaxation at your fingertip 1.1 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Healthcare & Fitness Price: $1.99, Version: 1.1 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Super Sharp (Games)
Super Sharp 1.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.1 (iTunes) Description: Your finger has never been so sharp! Cut with skill to complete the 120 ingenious physics levels of Super Sharp and become a cut... | Read more »
Assembly - Graphic design for everyone...
Assembly - Graphic design for everyone 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Photography Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Assembly is the easiest most powerful design tool on the App Store. Create anything you can... | Read more »
Dub Dash (Games)
Dub Dash 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: ARE YOU READY FOR THE ULTIMATE CHALLENGE? UNIQUE SYMBIOSIS OF MUSIC AND GRAPHICS | Read more »
Leave Me Alone (Games)
Leave Me Alone 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: 33% off launch sale!!! Somewhere between the 1980s and 1990s there exists a world that never was. A world of skatepunks,... | Read more »

Price Scanner via

Adobe and Dropbox Partner to Streamline Work...
Adobe and Dropbox Inc. have announced a partnership to enable people and organizations greater flexibility to work the way they want with documents at home, in the office or on-the-go. The companies... Read more
DriveSavers Offers Data Recovery Relief to Vi...
DriveSavers, specialists in data recovery, eDiscovery and digital forensic services have announced assistance to victims of the recent storm and historically unprecedented flooding in South Carolina... Read more
Apple Products Four Of 2015′s Top Ten Most Wa..., Future’s global technology brand and the UK’s biggest technology website, has unveiled results from extensive research that show • The Smart Home is what excites the public most about... Read more
13-inch 2.7GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro on sa...
Best Buy has the 13″ 2.7GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1174.99 for a limited time. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale price for online orders only, in-... Read more
App Tamer 2.1 Makes El Capitan Cooler, Quiete...
St. Clair Software has announced the availability of a free update to its App Tamer utility for Mac OS X. App Tamer 2.1 delivers compatibility with Yosemite and improves its support for a number of... Read more
15-inch Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to...
B&H Photo has 2015 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $160 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $1849.99 $150 off - 15″ 2.5GHz Retina... Read more
12-inch Retina MacBooks on sale for $100 off...
Best Buy has 12″ Retina MacBooks available for $100 off MSRP on their online store. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Discounted prices available for online orders only... Read more
MacBook Airs on sale for up to $100 off MSRP
Save up to $100 on the purchase of a new 2015 13″ or 11″ 1.6GHz MacBook Air at the following resellers. Shipping is free with each model: 11" 128GB MSRP $899 11" 256GB... Read more
Save 15% with Apple refurbished Mac Pros
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished Mac Pros available for up to $600 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each Mac Pro, and shipping is free. The... Read more
Apple restocks refurbished Mac minis for up t...
Apple has restocked Certified Refurbished 2014 Mac minis, with models available starting at $419. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $419 $... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Desktop Analyst - KDS Staffing (Unit...
…work with some of the brightest engineers. Job Description Title: Apple Desktop AnalystPosition Type: Full-time PermanentLocation: White Plains, NYHot Points:Depth of Read more
*Apple* Systems Engineer (Mclean, VA and NYC...
Title: Apple Systems Engineer (Mclean, VA and NYC) Location: United States-New York-New York-NYC 200 Park Avenue (22005) Other Locations: United Read more
Partner Business Development Manager - *Appl...
…exceptional individuals to join our Sales Solutions team as Business Development Manager- Apple . This position focuses on the overall management of and achievement of Read more
Project Manager: *Apple* Pay - Apple (Unite...
…The iOS Systems team is looking for a project manager who will manage Apple Pay server side integration project resources in a matrix organization, track tasks, prepare Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Job Description:SalesSpecialist - Retail Customer Service and SalesTransform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.