True Wireless Earbuds have become the talk of the town. And as all technology trends go, Apple has been quick to establish a benchmark with its own wireless headphones — Apple AirPods. Today, we have hundreds of brands that are desperate to cross that benchmark, by hook or by crook.
One such brand that I stumbled on, earlier this week, was Jabra — the top of the line in the headphone industry. With this in mind, I was swift in prioritizing Jabra Elite 65T as my first choice during my search for a wireless earbud.
Now, Apple should have been my best bet, given its sound quality and features. However, I am an Android user and AirPods don’t pair well with an Android device.
After AirPods was out of the league, my choices were really narrowed down. While there were hundreds of wireless earbuds under $150, I knew that they weren’t up to the quality.
And I discovered this the hard way — Back in 2017, I bought the $70 Crossbeat Aero “True Wireless.” The earbuds were an utter disappointment — from call drops to weak Bluetooth range, they were like the pinnacle of worst wireless headphones.
Obviously, I did not want to make the same mistake. So, after rigorous research, I went for Jabra Elite 65t. While the retail price is $188, I managed to grab a deal at Amazon for $140.
A feature-rich wireless headset has become mainstream, and the Jabra Elite 65t is no exception. The headset is bundled with many unique features, and I say, even more than others.
Jabra has an Android app on Google Play Store which is supported by all the Jabra Elite headsets. Many of the Jabra Elite 65t features, I discovered on the app itself.
One that blew my mind was “Hear Through” — an option that amplifies the sounds of the surroundings. But I think the feature, currently at an early stage, because for some reason, kept turning off automatically.
The app also includes a “Find my Jabra” feature that enables tracking the location of the earbuds. The caveat is that it only works when the earbuds are out of the charging case.
A place where Jabra excels in comparison to other headset is the firmware updates. One can actually update their headset for enhanced quality and features.
I don’t think I need to boast how classy the Jabra Earbuds looks. The best part is the unique Copper Black color of the headsets that comes into notice all the time. I don’t know if can say the same for Titanium Black or the Gold Beige colors.
At the same time, I am overly impressed with the build quality. Even with having a plastic body, the earbuds are incredibly rugged. I took them to shower as well to test the IP55 rating. It was a gamble; however, Jabra did win.
I think Jabra Elite series is one of the few wireless headsets out there that have buttons on both of the earpiece. And there are many benefits to it — the right one has a multifunction button that can be used to play/pause music, reject call, and toggling the HearThrough option.
On the other hand, the left enables you to change tracks and volume, which is evidently rare in the wireless headsets. However, the left earbud buttons are slightly tighter than the left one. Thus, hard-pressing the volume buttons throw it off balance.
The entire Jabra Elite series is carefully designed to make the earbuds stay in your ear. Even after a round of extreme head shake, the earbuds didn’t fall off. But the catch here is that the in-eargels go too deep inside the ear.
Even if I ignore that one cuts off from outer the world, the abrupt fitting of the Jabra Elite makes it uncomfortable after a few hours. And frankly, I never liked the noise cancellation part of any in-ear headphones, so it’s more of a personal issue rather than a general one.
Meanwhile, here is a question — if you are planning to make in-ear headphones, why in the world would you not instill a mesh behind the bud? I mean, if you are buying the Jabra Elite 65t, then get ready to pour all the ear canal dirt into the headsets.
Phew! Let’s talk about good stuff for a change, like the Jabra Elite 65t battery. Obviously, it doesn’t give the “5-hour” battery life, but it did manage to give a 4-hour run on a single charge, which is still impressive. Overall, the Jabra Charging case gives a total 10-hour charge.
On the other hand, my Jabra device did charge rapidly, as marketed, giving me at least 2-hour juice in half hour. Though, fitting the earbuds in the Jabra charging case was a task, considering they need to be positioned correctly
Talking more about the Jabra case, it is quite handy — not too big nor too small, a perfect size. Though, there is one issue with it; One has to exert extreme pressure on the front panel to open it. It took me ages to open it on my first attempt. And honestly, it will get frustrating over time.
A wireless headset needs to have excellent connectivity, for obvious reasons, and Jabra Elite 65T has it. The device supports Bluetooth 5.0, meaning one can connect to more than one devices simultaneously. The range is also impressive — I would keep my phone at one end and roam around the entire house, without facing any sound drops.
Like the Apple Aippods, the Jabra Elite 65t also has that proximity sensor. So, removing them from the ear immediately pauses the music. Another cool thing is the headset automatically connects to the nearby devices, after being removed from the charging case.
In my opinion, it all comes down to this — the sound. And I will be direct here, the sound quality on the Jabra Elite 65t is extraordinary. The music is reasonably loud; bass is above average. Again, not a fan of noise cancellation, however, it was indeed top of the line.
The Jabra App for Android includes a music equalizer and a bunch of music presets such as bass boost, smooth, treble boost and more. I liked the Soundscape feature, within the app, which includes many soothing sounds such as of rain, sea waves, bubbles and more.
Jabra Elite series comes with four microphones — equally balanced on both the earpiece. Naturally, I had no complaints regarding the call audio. Even my folks at the other end said the reception was loud and clear. Although, I saw few people on the Internet complaining about “too much background is being picked up” while calling, I faced no such issue.
What went wrong?
However, there is another issue that I can’t help but notice every time. To tell you the truth, there is a permanent static sound in the Jabra Elite’s left earbud. And by Jabra Elite, I mean the Jabra Elite 65t as well as the Jabra Elite Active 65t.
As a matter of fact, there are lots of people on the Internet that have complained about the same problem. According to many Reddit posts, the issue remained even after replacing the product.
Needless to say, I didn’t go on believing all this at first. Therefore, I contacted the company through their official Twitter handle. Below was the response that I received —
As it turns out, the issue is pretty much in every Jabra Elite headset. By this time, I had already tried updating my headset so the team wasn’t much of a help. Few people on Reddit are speculating that this might be because of a lot of Wi-Fi interference in urban areas.
I am well aware of the fact that wireless headsets can have issues. But I don’t expect it from a $188 piece of hardware. Moreover, AirPods are priced at $160, and yet, they are free from all such issues.
What do you think?
So this was my experience with Jabra Elite 65t. Excluding the static sound issue, I would say it is one of the best wireless headsets out there.
To my knowledge, every wireless headset comes with its own perks and disadvantages. For instance, Mobvoi TicPods had its own set of issues. In the end, it all depends upon your preferences.