Review Nokia BH501 bluetooth stereo headphones

As I have previous mentioned I am pretty hard on headphones and my current pair of Koss KSC-75 headphones only lasted 10 months. As my last three pairs of headphones all had problems with their wiring and my Dopod 838Pro needs a special adapter for a standard headphone jack which does cause me problems. So I decided to try a pair of bluetooth stereo headphones. After a quick look around the reviews on the net, I settled on a pair of Nokia BH501s that were on special in a local phone store.

They connected to both the MacBook Pro and Dopod 838Pro without a problem. Switching the headphones between the laptop and phone is quite easy. Going from phone to laptop, just requires me switching the headphones off and on and I listening to iTunes. From laptop to phone, also requires a little extra work due to WM5, you need to go into settings > connections > bluetooth, select the headphones and press refresh, check the box and save and you are listening to Windows Media Player from your phone.

I don’t have any problems with reception with the MacBook. The Dopod is another thing, mainly on the move with the phone in my pocket. With the phone in my hand it is a lot better, but on occasions walking around the signal breaks up.

My main concern about the Nokia BH501 is the sound quaility. The bottom end was really muddy and the first couple of hours had me really worried if I could live with these headphones. However, after 10 hours of use the sound quality has improved. They are no match for my departed Koss KSC-75. Still hopefully a few more hours burning will improve the clarity of the bottom end.

Battery life is pretty good, I have only had to recharge the headphones once in almost 10 hours of use. But it does drain the battery of the Dopod 838pro when used as a music player with a bluetooth headset.

The headphones also include a microphone, so they can be used as telephone headset, but I have not tested that feature yet.

The main advantage of bluetooth headphones is no wires and I am really enjoy the freedom offered. But the sound quality and interference on the connection between the phone and headset still has not convince me this is the best way to listen to music.

You do not get stereo on a MacBook and Tiger straight out the box (you have to wait for Leopard for that), I will detail my adventures in get stereo bluetooth from the MacBook later.

Review after installing Windows Mobile 6


11 Responses to “Review Nokia BH501 bluetooth stereo headphones”

  1. Sudarshan Says:

    I got one of these(BH 501) yesterday and tried to use it with my Intel MacBook. It did not seem to find the headset. I have no experience with using Bluetooth devices on the laptop. Is there something else that I have to do than run the Bluetooth setup assistant?
    Thanks in advance.


  2. Sudarshan Says:

    Was able to figure it out myself by reading the BH 501 manual more carefully. I t has everything necessary to get it working.

  3. Nick Says:

    Sorry Sudarshan about being slow to respond, good to see you have it working. Note it is only mono until you get Leopard or hack the system.

  4. Naveen Says:

    hey !

    Can somebody tell me if this headset(BH-501) can be set for voice chat using Yahoo or Skype messengers ?


  5. Defiant Says:

    These headphones make a decent set producing decent sound.. But they didn’t last a month under normal usage. I didn’t even abuse it in any way, no accidents, just normal usage. Bad buy.

    Pros: Decent Sound

    Cons: POOR Workmanship
    POOR Service
    Uncomfortable to use
    Signal easily affected by physical barriers
    No Music Player Controls
    Weak microphone
    Did I mention the poor workmanship?

  6. Vlad Says:

    hi can anyone help me? i lost my phone witch was connected to my headphones and now i got a knew phone… how do i connect it?! is there a reset button or something ?!

  7. Rick Poynter Says:

    Thought sound, comfort and functionality were okay, but they’re too flimsy. The left side moulded plastic connector between earphone and neckband broke at the narrowest point, with much less than abusive force. My business is plastics raw materials and I’d say this was the result of a design fault, a moulding fault or both. Nobody at Nokia was willing to accept any responsibility and I’d only had them around 3 months. No parts availability so unless you want to try to repair them yourself, eg with super glue, your only option is to replace them with something much more robust.

    Anyone else had this problem. Haven’t seen any web reports, but I’ll bet it’s been a frequent problem and maybe reason for taking them off the market?

  8. Phuntsok Says:

    BH 501 sucks!!

  9. Greg Mac Says:

    Had the BH-501 for 6mnths same problem with the ear piece just broke no reason not abused in anyway, now I read that they dont have parts I think its time we call consumer affairs.

  10. jean Says:

    your site is very good to view with psp. thank you

  11. doremi Says:

    Mine got broken as well. Nokia said that is because of misusage. F*ck them I used it normally.

    Fix it with 2 component glue.