Technophile

Jabra Elite 65t: Joining the earbuds bandwagon

Kishore Bhargava | Updated on May 16, 2018 Published on May 16, 2018

The set is a good option for those looking to use it primarily for regular listening and calls

The flavour of the season seems to be wireless buds so why should a well-known audio brand like Jabra be left behind? It recently launched not one but two pairs of wireless buds, one for workouts and sport, and the other — the Jabra Elite 65t — for music and phone calls.

The Jabra Elite 65t earbuds are made of plastic but don’t feel cheap. In fact, plastic is a good choice of material since it keeps them fairly light. They have a titanium finish that makes them look premium and come with silicone ear tips in three sizes.

The resting place for the earbuds is a nice little sturdy case, which also doubles up as the charger. The moment you pull them out, they automatically turn on. We paired the buds with several devices without too many issues. A small annoyance was that one did need to reset them in order to forget previously paired devices but other than that, they auto-connect and are good to go. The devices we used included an iPhone 7+, a Pixel, a Lenovo Yoga X1, and a hi-res digital audio player.

On the iPhone and Pixel, there is also a companion app. Though they work without the app, downloading it gives some extra functionality, including choosing your voice assistant, an equaliser, and a few settings for voice and call control.

As is to be expected, the audio quality of a Jabra product would be good. However, on our first few tests, they sounded extremely tinny. They worked great for calls but were not very pleasing for music. The issue was getting a good seal in the ears. If you use the right-sized tips for your ears, the seal is great and the sound too. If they are a little loose, then audio suffers drastically.

The equaliser in the app is a great addition and lets you customise the sound to your personal preference. A very nice touch to the buds is a feature that allows one to bring in ambient sounds into the mix. Very good if you are running, walking or generally need to be aware of your surroundings. The feature has, of course, been present on several other brands for a while now, including Sony, Bose and others.

The buds are fairly efficient when it comes to power consumption. Being a Bluetooth 5.0 device, battery use is conservative. The case provides an additional two charges easily, giving you up to 15 hours of battery life.

While the earbuds are fairly light, they are not comfortable to wear for more than two hours at a time. Using foam ear tips does help with that but since they did not ship with them, you would need to get third-party ones. The controls on the earbuds are also a little fiddly. One press to pause/play, long press to bring up the voice assistant, longer press to power off and an even longer press to reset. The buds respond with audio beeps and lights but if you are wearing them, you are not going to see the light prompts unless you are in front of a reflective surface. The audio responses are just beeps and are meaningless.

The Jabra Elite 65t earbuds are supposed to be compatible with various voice assistants but they don’t always seem to work and the feature depends on the phone’s operating system. We found that on iOS, Siri was supported if enabled on the phone and on Android, both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa were supported. Alexa support is slated to “come soon” to iOS.

Price: ₹12,999

Pros: Quality sound, lightweight, good battery life

Cons: Did not work too well with Skype for Business, controls very fiddly, voice assistants not consistent, no voice control, expensive

Published on May 16, 2018
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