5 weeks I ago I have received a test sample from Jabra including their latest Bluetooth wireless Ear Buds Elite 65t. I was quite curious to discover what might be different to Jabra Elite Sport which have same form factor, see my review here.
Main facts and highlights:
- 4-microphone technology should provide excellent sound quality in phone calls
- Audio Acoustical open chamber design wind noise protection
- A customizable equalizer in a dedicated Sound App should improve music experience
- Up to 5 hours battery, 15 hours with charging case (Micro USB connection)
- True wireless stability with Bluetooth® 5.0 should reduce call and music dropouts and keep connection up to 33 feet / 10 meters. Multiple device pairing Pair up to 8 devices
- IP55 rated, with 2-year warranty against water and dust
- Voice command made simple with One-touch access to Amazon Alexa, Siri, and Google Now
So let`s have a deeper look which promises they deliver:
Comfort and ease of use
One aspect which I appreciate is that they are very comfortable, easy sitting in my ears and don`t drop out. Make sure you test different sizes of EarGels which are part of the package. I could wear them also in times when not talking on the phone/ Skype for Business or Microsoft Teams Calls or listening to music. But usually I put them back into the charger which can be carried in my jeans pockets. I really like the new Auto-on feature when I take them out of the charging case. Another improvements compared to Elite Sports are the buttons to change volume or skip songs. I don`t have to press the buttons so hard anymore to do these changes. But still room for improvements because competition is using stroke controls or head gestures.
Wireless Stability and Robustness
No complains here, Bluetooth connection is very reliable and I enjoy that they can pair with up to 8 devices and 2 at same time. When I walk through my house and lose connection to my smartphone, it can be easily be resumed by just clicking on the multi function right ear button. If one ear bud is taken out, then auto pause is enabled. Auto off after 15 min without connection and 60 min without activity which has saved my batteries many times because I usually forget to switch them off.
I have also used them on my latest Beach visits in Florida and Spain to check their robustness for dust and water. In my local gym I connect these ear buds with my Fitbit Versa Smartwatch and enjoy music at workout and later in the jacuzzi (but head and hands over water for Bluetooth connectivity). They are not made for swimming.
Sound and Speech Quality + App
Lately I really enjoy listening to “Losing my religion” by Amber Rubarth and it`s impressive how excellent the high-and midtone frequencies sound. Guitar Picks are very crisp, voice of Amber is very clear. It can be that other ear buds have stronger bass punches but I just listened to “Bobby Brown” by Frank Zappa, no need for me to have a stronger and deeper bass.
You want to hear more about Microphone Quality? Check out my voice sample here:
Over the last 5 weeks I couldn`t really test how microphones can reduce background noises like wind which offers lot of value. I just did some voice recordings and played music and podcast in the background which can be easily heard. So in cases you need a headset which can eliminate all background noise while talking on the phone, Elite 65t might not be the No1 choice. Make sure to install October 10th Firmware Update which should offer improvements for wind and background noise.
New Sound+ App by Jabra offers personalized music experience with its included equalizer. I use the predefined increased trebles which fit well to my music taste. Presets can be modified easily. Sound+ App can also be used to play ocean waves to improve your focus time. It`s the place where “HearThrough” Feature is configured, I use it when people want to talk with me while I am wearing the ear plugs. No need to take them off.
I haven`t done scientific tests with battery life, so I assume that 5 hours battery plus 10 additonal hours with charging case are correct. These values are higher than many competitors are offering. 15 Minutes charge are adding additional 1,5h listening time.
Voice Command with Personal Assistants
Oh, Alexa… We are having a quite a love / hate relationship!
Elite 65t is not only offering Google Assistant for my daily driver Huawei Mate 10 Pro but also Alexa (configured in Jabra Sound App as default). I tried to figure out how to activate Alexa Voice Commands without going to Amazon Alexa App and push the button. Not sure what I am doing wrong here, it works fine with Google Assistant which can also unlock my phone. So for now my impression is that Alexa App for Android is far away from being perfect and increase my productivity. I can`t use it in my car where I don`t want to touch the phone. Simple things like navigating through my Spotify Playlists don`t work – and they are working well on my Amazon Echo Show.
Strong recommendation for people who are searching for an Alternative to Apple EarPods, want to have a high quality phone calls and enjoy excellent music experience. Made for an active life where work is something you do and not a place where you go to. Am I missing something? For sure I am not missing a strong deep bass for Hip Hop Lovers. Very strong background noise cancelation? Yes, I see room for improvements here. Charging on my Huawei Mate 20 Pro which is arriving in 10 days? Oh, yes! That`s a cool feature indeed offered by Huawei FreeBuds. But first of all I would like to request from Google Assistant, Siri and Alexa more business relevant features because I believe that Ear Buds have more use cases than listening to music, audio books, podcasts, movies and doing phone calls.