Jabra (pronounced jab-bra) is part of the Danish GN Group (Est. 1869) that has some incredible world firsts. Like the first intercontinental telegraph, 2.4Ghz hearing aid technology and stereo streaming hearing aids for iPhone. It is the only company creating consumer headphones, professional headsets, and hearing aids under one roof.
First impression – Fine, well PASS+
I hate OTE – any brand and any type. Sorry, Jabra. But to my chagrin, it appears the young people adore OTE.
So, these are light at 160g, have that signature Jabra solid build and to my surprise sound pretty good too. Being OTE, they sit on the ear – there is no inherent sound isolation.
They fold flat and fit into a synthetic material pouch. To save money, they come with a short USB-A to USB-C charge cable.
Oh, and dual mics enable hands-free phone use and access to Google Assistant, Siri and others
Setup – EXCEED
Like any other Jabra headset, you download Jabra+ (Android and iOS).
But unlike others, you start by tailoring MySound – essentially a hearing tone test for each ear. This is interesting and presumably compensates by enhancing the frequency response ranges that you are weak in.
Sound – Volume – PASS, Sound signature – EXCEED
At 71dB its not as loud as other headphones. But it is very clear with no distortion.
Deep Bass: 20-40Hz – nil
Middle Bass: 40-100Hz – building slowly
High Bass: 100 to 200Hz – flat
Low-mid: 200-400Hz – flat
Mid: 400-1000Hz – flat
High-mid: 1-2kHz – flat
Low-treble: 2-4kHz – flat
Treble:4-6kHz – flat
High Treble: 6-10kHz – slight dip to avoid harshness
Dog whistle: 10-20kHz – flat to 13kHz
Its native signature is Mid – bass recessed, mid boosted, treble recessed.
The Jabra Sound+ EQ does not affect bass – well perhaps makes it muddy. But you have great control over mid and treble to give it that hip-hop bright vocal sound. So much software EQs don’t work!
Battery – EXCEED
It has a 50-hour battery – likely at 50% volume. Given its slightly lower volume, it means you are likely to run it close to maximum. We tested for a total of eight hours and used about 30%, meaning its about 24-30 hours at a higher volume.
Charge time is 1.5 hours with any USB charger that can deliver at least 5V/.5A. Higher amperage does not reduce charge time.
BT – EXCEED
Its V5.0 that means you can connect to two other BT 5.0 sources at the same time. Maximum reliable distance from the smartphone is about 10 metres.
Build – EXCEED
Leatherette (PU), memory foam pads and headband (not replaceable), Aluminium headband, ABS cups. Should wear well.
Hands-free – PASS
Even though it has two MEMs mics, it does not reduce external noise. It does not do much for windy conditions.
The voice key also summons voice assistants.
GadgetGuy’s take – I wanted to hate all OTE like the Jabra Elite 45h, but I could not
OK, I am an audiophile snob – only the best sound comes from over-the-ear-cans things with a lot of dollar signs in front.
But as the day wore on, these won me over for easy listening, especially after I realised how well the custom MySound works and the EQ is terrific.
I play a lot of Jazz and Blues – that means lots of bass, piano, trumpet, trombone, and vocals. These were equally at home with this genre as with hip-hop and synth – just change the EQ.
Like most headphones, USB is for charging only.
Jabra Elite 45h I usually do more expensive ANC cans, so I am not up to speed on this market. There are many brands, models and prices, so it is hard to say if these are class-leading.
However, a quick look at JBs shows there are none with the battery life or the amenity of the Jabra Sound+ app, so it starts at 4/5 (PASS) and creeps up to 4.4/5 for its design, battery, app and sound.