Sunday, 19 May 2024 22:34

Why the EPOS IMPACT 800 series needs to be your new office headphones

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EPOS has been seriously enhancing communication and productivity through audio since its inception, and the new EPOS Impact 800 Series bring incredible voice pickup and noise cancellation that all combine to help you and your collaborators do more, with greater ease and efficiency.

No matter where you work, and no matter your role, video conferencing and teleconferencing are a way of modern office life. Gone is the desk phone, and in is Microsoft Teams, Zoom, WebEx, BlueJeans, and so many others. And with anywhere your workplace, you may sometimes be in your own home office, but other times in an open office, at an airport, in a cafe, maybe even the side of the road. At any of these locations, you will have calls and conversations in a myriad of forms, with a range of people.

Meetings aren't simply a thing we do; yes, some can be dull and some can be pointless, but for the most part, these meetings and calls are where things happen. It's when action plans are formulated. It's when complex concepts are hashed out and broken down into actionable plans. However, there's a big difference between "communication" and, well, noise. Communication isn't simply one party saying words. Communication takes two; it has to be understood by the receiver.

EPOS launched in Australia in 2020 (albeit building on 115 years of audio expertise) and from the onset stated its mission was to enable professionals to focus seamlessly on their task-at-hand and to perform at their best. This mission has continued, and the new EPOS IMPACT 800 series is not only wrapped in soft, breathable materials for all-day use, and not only includes three beam-forming microphones but is imbued with EPOS BrainAdapt smart tech that helps knowledge workers perform their best.

EPOS' claim that these headphones can help you perform your best is not hyperbole; the company has genuinely researched and studied the effect that noisy environments, coupled with inferior audio, can have on the typical office worker. These effects include brain fatigue by having to work harder to distinguish speech on the call from background noise, and further to make out what is being said.

Instead, the IMPACT 800 - an on-ear, wired USB-C headset (with USB-A adapter in the box), brings hybrid Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) and AI-enhanced voice pickup that filters every 4th millisecond based on 8000 parameters. These are no ordinary headphones; they are a next-gen headset for the new open office. EPOS BrainAdept then adds a range of technologies that leverage the ANC and pickup to cut down noise and help your brain relax, making it simpler and smoother to focus on the conversation.

EPOS' research shows reducing disruptive sounds can mitigate brain fatigue, and that BrainAdept can increase efficiency by 40%. It improves reaction time while multi-tasking, and ensures accurate, crystal-clear conversations that maximise understanding and communication - and thus results in better business outcomes. Instead of leaving a call wondering what you needed to do, or questioning what was agreed upon, you conclude the meeting with clarity and an action plan. And, what's more, the headphones include super wideband audio for natural sound, have intuitive controls and smart features, are lightweight, with soft padding and cushioning. In addition, the headphones include ActiveGuard technology to prevent loud spikes and to support noise-at-work compliance.

EPOS860

The headphones include a boom microphone that allows you to initiate, end, and mute calls simply by moving the arm or taking the headset on or off. Another nice touch is that a 360-degree busy light is included, so those around you know when you're on a call and thus can't be disturbed.

We all know the world is not silent, whether colleagues or barking dogs, children playing, printers printing, servers humming, or even the dishwasher, we rarely participate on calls in a truly quiet place. Do yourself a favour with a good set of headphones, and not only yourself but those you speak with. With excellent voice pickup your call partners will hear you, and with ANC you will hear them. And then with BrainAdapt your ability to hear and process every single word is maximised.

In fact, iTWire has made the EPOS Adapt 860 headphones our own daily driver for office work, and that's me in the picture. We've been in call after call, meeting after meeting, and can sincerely testify the outside world is taken away. I've not had one person ask me to repeat myself because they couldn't understand me, and while software quality varies, I have enjoyed truly stunning call quality with telephony apps like the Mitel MiCollab platform where, if I had my eyes closed, I could have sworn the person on the other end was literally standing right next to me. Actually, even if they were standing with me I'd still have the background noise of the office - so in reality, these calls have been clearer, crisper, sharper than face-to-face.

The EPOS IMPACT 800 range is available now, in four models, based on whether ANC is included, and if Microsoft Teams certification is required or not.

The models and pricing are:

  • EPOS 860 - $219
  • EPOS 860T - $219 - with Microsoft Teams certification
  • EPOS 860 ANC - $275 (pictured) - with ANC
  • EPOS 860T ANC - $275 - with ANC and Microsoft Teams certification

The ANC models provide four digital MEMS microphones, and the non-ANC models provide three.

The EPOS 800 series includes a nice padded carry bag as well as a USB-C to USB-A adapter.

Additionally, you can move up and down the EPOS IMPACT range with the EPOS Impact 700 series and EPOS Impact 1000 series. The 700 range has a single-sided option, and three microphones, and does not offer ANC. The 1000 range includes wireless operation and a charging stand and also provides a single-side option.

As with the rest of the EPOS business range, IT teams can use EPOS Manager to manage, update, and configure EPOS headphones from any location.

EPOS

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David M Williams

David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. David subsequently worked as a UNIX Systems Manager, Asia-Pacific technical specialist for an international software company, Business Analyst, IT Manager, and other roles. David has been the Chief Information Officer for national public companies since 2007, delivering IT knowledge and business acumen, seeking to transform the industries within which he works. David is also involved in the user group community, the Australian Computer Society technical advisory boards, and education.

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