Motorola S9 Bluetooth Active Stereo Headset

Motorola S9 Bluetooth Active Stereo HeadsetI went to the gym the other day armed with a new weapon. Yes, I’ll admit it, some days getting motivated to work out is as hard as actually working out. The weapon? The new Motorola S9 Bluetooth Active Stereo Headset.

A whole lot less geeky looking than other models, this new, lightweight (less than an ounce) headset is a perfect pair to your K1 KRZR, especially if you have the RED version. I say less geeky ‘coz the image of one running around and shaking/bopping your head with a wireless piece of plastic stuck on your head is still close to goofyness.

But I like it. I like it a lot. It works really well, with controls for the your phone’s music player built-in the right ear piece. If one of your geeky or non-geeky friends call you, the music will pause and you can use the S9 as a Bluetooth phone earpiece. A mic is hidden in the earpiece. Answer and hang-up the phone with the buttons on the left side and control volume with the same set of buttons.

You can use the unit with all compatible Bluetooth-enabled phones and stream music from a compatible Bluetooth-enabled stereo music phone or from a compatible Bluetooth-enabled MP3 player. There will be an iPod adapter available soon, sold in a set for about CAD$190 (CAD$150 for the headset alone).

Pairing is a very simple process. Turn it on and and if doesn’t find a previously paired phone, it will set itself into “find me” mode automatically. Charging is done with the included mini-USB adapter, the same one used to charge newer model Moto phones.

And oh yeah, I did get a great workout. The unit is water and sweat resistant and cleans easily. I rocked slowly lifted the weights with everything from AC/DC and Led Zep to Black Eye Peas and Nelly.

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50 responses to “Motorola S9 Bluetooth Active Stereo Headset”

  1. I have gone through 2 pair of the s9,the problem is with the volume controls,if they get a little moisture in them you will start having problems with them. So even a little sweat can cause them to malfunction. It’s to bad because they really are a good sounding headphone.

  2. I have also gone through 2 sets. My problem was trying to power them on – they would not turn on with a full battery. The first set was DOA, the second set lasted about 3 months. Hopefully, the replacement set will be better.

  3. I have gone thru 3 headsets with the same problem….The volume up/down does not work… Although I love the design, I’m taking this last pair back.

  4. I am about to return my first set. Love them but the volume disappeared in the midle of a workout an the buttons won’t work.

  5. I just got my S9’s yesterday and I’m having the same problem that Keith described. During my work out, a little moisture must have gotten in the unit and now the volume is stuck on high. I’m calling for an RA number tomorrow.

  6. I have had my pair since Xmas (they were a present and I don’t have the receipt). They have suddenly developed the same problem: volume up/down stopped working. do i still have a right to take them back to shop for replacement, even without a receipt?

  7. I have gone through at least a dozen of these headsets. They do not work after a week or 2. I cannot get calls on my phone or I do not get any music. The people who call me can not hear me, but I can hear them. The music fades away after a week or so then the headset quits altogether.

  8. I think I saw you on Breakfast TV in Vancouver, the thing is I think I saw you with a Laptop lap pad, ridgid with a USB powered fan for $35. I have an Avertec that runs to hot. When I checked Future Shop and London Drugs I couldn’t find it at that price, please point me in the right Direction. sincerely R J

  9. I’ve ad the same vol. problem. Went through 3 of them before giving up. too bad, otherwise a good product. Tried to inoform motorola, but they kept saying to exchange it. I want to try the new HD version, any one tried it?

  10. I have gone through two pairs and I have the same issue with the volume. I thought it was something requireing a reset but that did not seem to help. I did get one of them to work after not using it for a week or so. It started working fine. It certainly may be the moisture but it may also be some other flaw in the electronics. Its too bad because I find it very comfortable to wear.

  11. My Headset is brand new, volume buttons don’t work for music, i can turn down media volume fine on phone, but has no effect on headset, until u turn it down all the way, then the set is muted, the music is constantly full blast, it is fucking annoying

  12. I have the fix for the fouled and broken Motorola S9 control buttons. When you get your replacement or first pair and before you work out (sweat) with them for the first time do the following. Buy some extra hold hair spray, look at the ingredients and choose one that doesnt have water as the first ingrediant and one that DOES include the word vinyl. I applied 3 coats to my headset allowing each to dry for 5 or 10 minutes. I took the rubber ear buds off for my first two coats. I was careful not to spray directly into the holes where the sound actually comes out. I worked out for 1.5 hours and was absolutely dripping, the controls functioned well throughout and post workout. I will continue to apply another coat before each workout. Hope this helps.

  13. My headset just stopped working. I’m guessing this is a recurring problem. First my player controls began to stop working, now it’s my volume buttons. It would be a great product, if only the headset actually worked and the microphone had better reception.

  14. Im returning my 4th pair under warranty. Motorola appears to be in denial with the repeat issue that this headset is NOT a “sports” device. Controls fail after 3-4 times used. One Moto rep actually asked if I sweat and if so, there’s nothing wrong with the S9, it’s me. I intend to continue returning until they get it right. Press Moto to pay return shipping. This issue is unacceptable.

  15. i love my s9. unfortunately the volume control stopped working. it is because of the moisture in the gym. The unit is good, but the switch has to be replaced. This is just a very poor design flaw. It is prohibitive to replace this unit, so in the meantime, i have to use the wired headset. i don’t know if i will get a replacement unit. I fear that the problem will just reoccur.

  16. I am just now returning my first set, I agree with John (#12) I am a mechanic by trade and a teacher by profession. I think I can try and create a barrier of some kind for the device to keep it from getting wet with sweat. The hair spray sounds interesting but not long term. I’ll keep you posted.

  17. Consistent issue with volume controls malfuntioning permanently during exercise that involves profuse sweating. An unexpected continuous increasing loud beep occurs and then the volume fades immediately while still connected via bluetooth. Other controls continue to work except the volume controls. This is my fourth unit. Based on the accumulating reports of similar issues in this forum Motorola’s problem resolution service model is ineffective and costly for consumers given the high price of the accessory. Will require immediate mitigation and resolution of either good faith repair or replacement and action necessary to investigate electronic issues by Motorola technical support. We will continue to petition until this can be addressed at the State and Federal level for a Class Action Lawsuit due to negligence and intentional deceitful practises to mislead the general public in product claims and lack thereof a suitable follow up plan to mitigate consumer reported issues and concerns. The retail price of this product is equal to or more to a persons one, two, or three day income. Therefore a consumer with such limited income is relying on good faith product claims and superior customer service and technical support.

  18. I have enjoyed these headphones for quite some time, but on my most recent workout, the volume buttons quit working, and then the volume went out all together, I was also unable to adjust the volume on my phone it was just a constant volume. It has been the most annoying thing getting it to pair up with the iPhone and using the bluetooth adapter at the same time. When it worked, it was great, but now it doesnt and it is slightly satisfying to hear I am not the only one with the problem, so it isnt just my set. I will be contacting Moto for a replacement, seeing as they are not that old

  19. I loved this headphone (at first) and bought a second pair to have at the office. Now I have two headphones that do not work. I used the first one to work out and now I cannot get the volume to stay where I want, it always go all the way down. The second pair is not working either, not at all – no sound!

  20. After 2 weeks of careful usage the increase volume button stop working during the gym workout.Do you know any other other brand that have a similar product ?


  21. I’m on my first S9 – love everything about the S9 except battery life is a little weak and (and this is the recurring problem everyone else is having) the headset just doesn’t work if you use it to workout.

    Seems many of us are experiencing the same problems – the buttons on the unit (volume, next/previous) stop working (permanently), but more problematic, the volume changes all by itself, and keeps going down or up, giving you a beep to say it reached the limit, and then continuously beping until you turn off the device. So the conclusion is that, as soon as you start to sweat, the device has to be rebooted before you can use it again (unless you like the sound of the beep every second).

    I called Motorola, like others have reported, and they are not offering refunds, only replacements. And they will only honor the warranty on the first device. So, if one year from the purchase of the original S9 they still haven’t worked out the problem, you’re stuck with a faulty device. Quite frankly, the device is not sweat-resistant like it says on the box.

    I called Motorola today and am getting my second S9 shipped. The device they are shipping is an S9-HD which is supposed to give better sound, but it also has a line in small print that is interesting and hopeful. Where the S9 is listed as sweat-resistant, the S9-HD is listed as sweat-proof. Could it be that the S9-HD is the answer? Only time will tell (and given the history, that’s only about one 4-mile run).

    If anyone knows of another device that offers sweat-proof or sweat-resistant, (and can actually prove the device will actually work when you sweat, unlike the S9), let us all know…

  22. UPDATE – Read my post from 9Nov – I received the replacement headset (my second S9) – Motorola shipped the wrong device – they sent me another S9 – they were supposed to send an S9-HD. Problems continue. I’m told that the S9-HD is being shipped…

  23. “John Says:
    May 22nd, 2008 at 2:53 pm
    I have the fix for the fouled and broken Motorola S9 control buttons.”

    Your post is not a “fix” but rather a “work-around” after receiving a new unit. Please ensure that you are posting correct information. I have seen your posts all over the internet and it is confusing and misleading. Thank you for your understanding.

  24. i only get audio out of one ear. i sthere a stereo blutooth card for a lap top. i dont want a usb device i would rather have something pemanent

    thank you.

  25. I had the same volume control problem. As anyone tried the S9-HD to see if the volume controls are more sweat proof? The controls look a little more raised in pictures. Not sure if that means anything though.

  26. I had the volume control issue with 6 pairs of S9s. After returning them 5 time I was told that the S9-HDs were coming out and that they would address the moister issue. This was in July of 2008 since the S9-HD weren’t scheduled to come until November I told the rep to hold off on sending me a replacement until the newly designed HDs came out. I recived my S9 in Decemeber, I am sad to say they worked for 3 weeks 15 workouts and failed with the same issue as before. I returned them and got a new pair and yesterday 3 weeks after replacement S9-HD number 2 bites the dust. So the issue is just that an issue, and thats to bad when they work they’re great. I’m now looking for a new solution.

  27. I’ve had the same problems with 2 pairs of the old S9 (red). First time all the buttons stopped working. Second time the volume buttons stopped working, then all the other buttons were mixed up and didn’t do what they were supposed to do, e.g. the play button did FFW.

    I’m gonna send them back to motorola and ask for the S9-HD…
    Although it seems that Eric Says:
    “I recived my S9 in Decemeber, I am sad to say they worked for 3 weeks 15 workouts and failed with the same issue as before. I returned them and got a new pair and yesterday 3 weeks after replacement S9-HD number 2 bites the dust.” Does he mean that he had two different S9-HD that have failed already?

  28. I thought I was the only one having problems with the S9/S9 HD volume. After a week using my first pair at the gym the volume went down and that was the last time I Got any sound out of my Expensive S9 Wireless headset. It seems that Motorola DOES NOT care about the consumers who spend $100 dollars on a product Motorola knows has problems and the costumer service rep. just keep making excuses for a defective product or blaming the clients who believe in Motorola to put out a product that at least will live up to Motorola’s reputation. We should put Motorola on the spot and demand a better product, they can find a fix for the S9, it is a great product. Motorola has to get its act together and find a solution for this problem. We demand and deserve a better product and Motorola is capable of delivering it!!! If they keep ignoring us we should all file a law sue against Motorola. We should at least get our money back from Motorola regardless of where we bought our S9/S9 HD. The reason I say we should get our money back is because Motorola knows the product is defective, they are the manufacturers and they could put a better product out there!!! The S9/S9 HD are supposed to be water proof or suet resistant, the reason suet and water get into the Volume control is because Motorola uses a little and cheap sticker to cover the wires instead Motorola should make this unit sealed, no cheap stickers covering the wires. I know Motorola has the means to manufacture a far better product!!! Everybody that has a S9 or S9 HD should call Motorola and complain about this product from now until the end of this month. We should also send emails to Motorola’s CEO. Contact Motorola this Month!!!!!Telephone Support 1800-331-6456 call them!!!!!

    If you have questions not answered through online support, send us an E-mail or give us a call. We are standing by to serve you!

    Cell Phones & Accessories 1-800-331-6456 Mon-Fri 7AM-10PM; Sat-Sun 9AM-6PM CST

  29. I thought these were the best thing I have bought in a while but I am highly disapointed with them. The volume button on mine has also stopped working. After looking closely the cover for the volume control is just a piece of rubber glued ontop of the touch sensors on mine it was not even glued or sealed very well, so it is definately poor design or lack of control during the manufacturing process. I will be taking my replacemnt pair apart and applying a proper sealant to the volume cover to keep this from happening again.

  30. I had this s9 for 10 months now, and it stopped working when I was
    using the treadmill for an hour. I love this thing but it sucks that you can’t rely on this nice headset.

  31. Alternative to John’s May 22nd 2008 post is Silicone Paste. This is also a dielectric. I will try on my first replacement set when I get it…

  32. I am fuming over this headset. It is great when it works but I am on my fourth headset. They replaced the others but now I am out of the original warranty of the first headset. I spoke the to call center supervisor (some where in India) and they basically told me I am “shit out of luck” and they will not the replace unit. Even though they kept replacing the unit with another unit with the same defective design. The best they can do for me now is a 20% discount to buy another motorola product.
    F@$K ME!

    I am PISSED and will never buy a Motoscrapola again!!!!

  33. Just experienced the demise of the volume/play/FF/Rev buttons on my S9-HD after a month of use (but not too much sweat). I saw a post elsewhere recommending peeling back the rubber cusion near the earpiece to allow the innards to dry. Anyone have success with that approach? will it void my warranty?

  34. DO NOT BUY THE S9-HD if you plan to sweat, the play/pause and volume controls stop working properly as soon as they get wet. I got a replacement from my vendor and the same exact thing happened with these. Motorola is flat out lying if they say these things are sweat-proof.

  35. I loved this head set it was the answer to my wire nightmare i even waited until apple implemented A2DP on the iphone before i could properly use them. after a few journeys to work on my bike they have gone tits up just like everyone else who has posted here
    gutted they were just what I wanted.
    motorola need to sort their shit out
    boooooooooooo hisssssssss

  36. I am glad I read this foru, I thought I just bbroke the darn things. They worked great for a week, slight sweat in gym and the moisture in the locker room must have made the volume stick to super low. They are awesome when they work, but I will not waste another 100 on a new set.
    Booo Hisss Motorolla.. now im off to leave poor reviews on any site I can find on the S9-HD

  37. Same problem, I just came back from the GYM with no volumen control at all, this is my second pair. We need to do something to stop Motorola selling this faulty devices, lets put a petition or something like that as is a joke that this product is still on the market!

  38. Same problem after sweating. Has anyone considered putting a drain hole at the bottom of each earpiece so the unit doesn’t fill up with sweat?

  39. I have had the same problem. volume is stuck on high. I also went through about 4 pairs of these and have never been more frustrated with any piece of electronics. I will NEVER buy another Motorola product ever!

  40. OK, four intensively sweaty workouts and no problems. I can’t be sure if this is a long term fix but this is what I did. First, I ran a bead of Crazy Glue down the seams on the interior of the headset arms. These are the seams between the red and the black sections. I used Crazy Glue because of its low viscosity, it went into the seam. I then covered the seams with a layer of clear nail polish. So far, lots of sweat and no problems.

  41. Just used DAP brand silcone rubber sealant around all seams of the S9. This is a clear flexible seal that bonds well with plastic and is moisture resistant. Also used a coat over the buttons themselves since there are hairlines seems around the buttons themselves. No problems yet after my perilous sweat sent to pairs to the grave. Love the headphones, but hate motorola in that I have to slather a $100 headset with silicon to keep it sweat proof/resistant.

  42. im on my 4th pair of HD’s

    Everyone here has the same story:
    The headset sounds great and is very practical for training but the reliability is absolute shit.

    When my warranty runs out i will be stuck with a defective headset and still need to replace it, which means i have to pay even more money.

    Just wish motorola would make a version 2 of this product so that we can all enjoy what we have paid for 🙁 because as it is there is not another product on the market that can deliver this quality sound and practicality

  43. Same issue here. Sweat caused my volume button to be stuck on low. Not purchasing another pair. They were really nice while they lasted.

  44. Same here..when they worked they worked great. But now I’ve gone through 3 exchanges. Each time the volume went out during my workout. Three strikes and out…so I’m done. Can anyone recommend another headset?

  45. Same here, after a few weeks of use during workout, the + button went bad, and now the volume and the >> buton activates itself randomly, too bad.

  46. I have been bike riding with my S9’s for a year and a half.They have worked great, until they died yesterday. Darn. My Altec Backbeat’s are great for around the house, but they don’t stay in the ears the way the S9 did. I may have to get another pair unless someone can suggest something that holds as well in vigorous activity.

  47. Used mine for 6 months and now the volume is stuck on low and none of the controls work. Occasionally they would beep a series of times, slowly getting quieter, until they were off. This time they never came back up.

  48. I too had this issue and just “fixed” my S9 headset. My symptoms were the same as many here: low volume, unresponsive buttons, started during a workout. In frustration I decided to peel the black + – phone rubber button off of the unit (i figured why not, the thing is basically useless as it is). I then noticed that there is a little screw that connects the ear-bud housing to the head set that appeared to be corroded. I took out an exacto and started scraping the screw and noticed the base of the screw appeared have corrosion or something that extended to one of the wires. I scraped some of this substance and immediately the volume went to full (i had started a tune in advance – i suppose i could have shorted the whole unit, but I was taking a chance on that like i said). I cleared away the corrosion, tested the unit, then covered the screw and the cavity with super glue (I’m not sure if that is a smart move or not). As I type I am once again listening to my wireless headset once again!

  49. I’ve had my S9 for several years. have not used it in a wet environment. the silicone solution sounds reasonable. my question is, is the battery replaceable?
    I’m looking for a source for the battery and some directions if it’s doable.

  50. Same here, I just sprayed some electronic cleaning spray into the electronic circuit inside and the volume went up, Unfortunately volume buttons, skip and back buttons still not work…yet 🙂

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