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Jabra 65t truly wireless earbuds review

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Erin L

Erin L

Jabra is kicking ass when it comes to the fully wireless headphones market. They were leaders in semi-wireless headphones and now they have no less than three truly wireless earbuds on offer. I recently received a pair of the new Jabra Elite 65t truly wireless headphones for review.

 

jabra elite 65t review how to Review: Jabra Elite 65t truly wireless earbuds

These headphones are engineered for calls and music, as opposed to sports use (there’s the Elite Active, or Elite Sport for that. Read my review of Elite Sport here)

Who is Jabra Elite 65t for?

Jabra Elite 65t headphones appear to be designed for office workers and commuters who need to take calls hands-free, and who want to listen to music at work or on the train.

Jabra says the audio has been designed to make calls crystal clear, and the addition of four-microphone technology is said to give you effective wind noise reduction on calls. Advanced speakers that are just 6mm in size let you block out, or let in, ambient sound.

Jabra Elite 65t features an IP55-rated design, meaning there’s limited protection from low pressure water and dust. You can also push and hold the multifunction button on these earbuds to get instant access to your phone’s Digital Assistant, Siri or Google.

Setting up Jabra Elite 65t

Setting these headphones up is quite easy. It uses Bluetooth 5.0 for connection, which should improve speed and range. Helpfully, you can also pair these headphones to two phones or devices simultaneously.

How to Pair Jabra Elite 65tjabra elite 65t headphones wireless earbuds review how to

1.Ensure the right earbud is turned off and not in the charging case. To manually turn off the earbud, hold the Multi-function button until the LED flashes red.
2.Next, hold the Multi-function button on the right earbud for 5 seconds until you hear the connection instructions in the earbud and the LED flashes blue. Release the button, and follow the voice-guided instructions to pair to your smartphone. (This involves going to your phone’s Bluetooth menu, and selecting the Jabra Elite 65t to pair)
3.You may need to hold the Volume down button for 1 second on the left earbud to
turn it on.

Auto on & off and good battery life

Conveniently, the earbuds turn on right away when removed from the case, and they’ll shut down when you replace them. I love this feature since it helps prolong battery life. Speaking of which, promised battery life on these headphones is up to 5 hours of battery on a single charge, and up to 15 hours in total with the included pocket-friendly charging case.

How to charge Jabra 65t

To charge them, you need to put the earbuds in the charging case and close the lid. The battery LED inside the charging case doubles as a meter of sorts: it’ll flash red, yellow or green when the lid is open to indicate the earbuds’ current battery status. It takes about two hours to fully recharge.

Charging the case is similarly straightforward. Just plug it into a USB power supply or wall charger and it’ll take about two hours to fully charge the earbuds and the case.

What do the lights mean on Jabra 65t?

You’ll see different coloured lights on the earbuds and the case, and they’re simple to interpret. If it’s green, all’s well, orange means batteries are waning, and red is dead/low or shutting down.

What the buttons do on Jabra Elite 65t

Pushing and holding the right multifunction button on the earbud turns the power on and off to both buds. Easy.

There’s no need to start and stop music with a button: when you remove an earbud from your ear while listening to music, the music will automatically pause. I love this feature!

To unpause put the earbud back into your ear within 60 seconds. After a minute the music can be unpaused by pressing the multifunction button.

HearThrough settings can be configured using the Jabra Sound+ app or you can get it quickly by double-pressing the right multi-function button when not on a call.

To adjust volume use the Left earbud. There’s two tiny nibs on either side of the multifunction button. Pressing the front nib brings volume down and pressing towards the back brings it up. You can only control the volume when sound is playing. Pressing the Left button otherwise will get you a verbal battery report.

Fit & Feel  Jabra Elite 65t

There are extra ear gels in the package to help you get the right fit. While some manufacturers will give you several choices, here there’s really only small, medium and large.

Trying these on, I noticed they’re significantly less tight fitting than the Elite Sport version, which is ear-filling and can get uncomfortable. These have a more normal, natural fit, though with less tightness comes a feeling of a little less security and more concern of potentially having them fall out. That went a way quickly enough and I never had an issue with the buds coming loose on me.

These headphones are easy to put in and take out and don’t require a lot of finessing to maneuver, since they don’t have any fins to fiddle with.

The charging case is really small, and easily slips into a pocket. I did find the lid a touch sticky to open, since it closes very securely, and there’s not really much of a notch to pry it open with.

The microphone is located on the tiny diving board-looking protrusion on the earbud, so make sure it’s facing your mouth.

The right earbud can be used alone for mono playback or for calls.

When both earbuds are turned on and within 20 centimetres (8 inches) of one another, they will automatically relink.

jabra elite 65t review how to

Jabra Elite 65t – Music & Sound quality

I tried the Jabra 65t in a variety of environments, and with a bunch of different music.

My test playlist:
Cold War Kids – So Tied Up
Alice Merton – No Roots
Dire Straits — Expresso Love
Julia Michaels — Heaven
Eminem & Ed Sheeran: River
Echame la Culpa— Luis Fonsi
Post Malone—I Fall Apart

I was quite impressed with how good they. Listening to more vocal-forward tracks, the voice was very clear and distinct. The bass was pretty good also; not bone rattling, but it had more of a true sound to it than a vibration. Solid and pleasant.

Overall the sound was clear and crisp. There was no distortion or muddiness at higher volumes, and even at 70% volume it was still pleasant to listen to.

Using the Jabra Sound+ app

You can use Jabra’s app to customize some of your settings, BUT you can only access the controls when the headphones are on and paired to the device that’s running the app. Otherwise nothing will work.

You can adjust HearThrough, auto pause, and the voice prompts, plus which voice assistant you want to be the default. For now it’s Siri, but the app says Amazon Alexa is coming soon. There’s also controls for enabling verbal caller ID.

HearThrough technology to let noise in when you need it, block it when you don’t

Jabra’s HearThrough technology uses the built-in microphones to enable you to pay closer attention to your surroundings and engage in conversation without needing to remove the earbuds.

HearThrough settings can be configured using the Jabra Sound+ app or you can get it quickly by double-pressing the right multi-function button when not on a call.

HearThrough is pretty cool. With it on, I can hear myself typing on my laptop even as I listen to music, and noises like clapping come through as if I wasn’t wearing headphones. With HearThrough off, the sound solution is pretty good; not a lot of background noise bleeds in.

Jabra promises wind noise reduction; does it deliver?jabra elite 65t headphones wireless earbuds review how to

I had a chance to try these out on a very windy day. I put them on and went for a walk in the strong wind, making a few phone calls. I asked my callers how the overall sound quality of the call was and they said it was excellent. They sounded really clear too. Even when I could hear the wind rushing past my ears outside, the callers said they couldn’t hear a thing when it came to wind noise, so chalk one up for Jabra.

Watching videos – sync issues on smartphone

I tried watching YouTube videos on my Apple iPhone using the Jabra Elite 65t and, not surprisingly to me, there was a sync issue where the audio and video weren’t matched up. This is very common in truly wireless earbuds, but that doesn’t mean it’s acceptable. It’s frustrating for owners, because it limits what you can use these headphones for: audio, not video.

Interestingly, I tried them next on my MacBook laptop and they worked great. I’d say they were in sync enough to allow me to watch the evening news without frustration.

I’m not sure why they’d be out of sync with a smartphone and in sync on a computer. But I’m no engineer.  If anyone knows if this is a Jabra issue, an Apple issue or a software issue or something else, please post in comments.

Some dropouts

When using the headphones close to my phone or laptop, they were clear, and had no dropouts. Unfortunately, when I’d get up and walk away from the phone, I could only get about 17-20 steps away before it started dropping out or cutting out altogether.

Overall thoughts on Jabra Elite 65t truly wireless earbuds

Overall I really like these headphones. In fact, I was surprised at how much I liked them. The fit is quite comfortable, the battery life is solid, and the sound quality is very impressive.

I really appreciate the HearThrough technology and found that it worked quite well, and the noise isolation properties meant I could work in peace even in noisy cafes.

Overall the headphones are easy to operate and simple to understand, with easy to interpret lights and buttons that are intuitive and work well.

If I had some areas where these could be improved, I’d love to be able to get slightly more distance from these before dropouts happen. I’m also not sure what the deal is with videos on my smart phone being out of sync; perhaps this is an issue with my Apple phone and not Jabra’s fault.

If you’re looking for a solid and reliable pair of truly wireless headphones, these are a good pick I think most folks would be really happy with.

Jabra Elite 65t sells for $219 CAD and you can find them on Jabra’s website, from places like Best Buy.

 

Erin L

Erin L

I'm a journalist, tech blogger, writer, TV producer, silversmith& jewelry designer, foodie and world traveler. I blog, write for publications, and supply freelance writing services to Calgary, and the world.

2 Comments

  1. Guest 47 on April 22, 2018 at 10:18 am

    Thanks for a great review. I have no problems with the video sync issue at all on the iPhone X and iPad 4 mini, either for YouTube (via Safari – just watched your review video) nor on the Netflix app. I bought the 65t specifically because so many reviews said there were no sync issues. This is my third pair of wireless ear buds and neither the Earin nor the Bragi Dash had the sync issue either.

    • Erin L on April 23, 2018 at 5:13 am

      Thanks for posting you comments Guest 47!

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