Jabra is a longtime identify on the planet of true wi-fi audio so it’s maybe a bit stunning that the Jabra Elite 3 are its first foray into the extremely aggressive sub-£100 market.
A part of a September 2021 refresh to Jabra’s true wi-fi lineup that additionally contains the top-of-the-range Elite 7 Professional and sports-focused Elite 7 Energetic, the Elite 3 are entry-level earbuds that search to nail the fundamentals somewhat than ship a complete set of fancy options.
They definitely succeed in terms of consolation and controls, and their audio presentation is spectacular for the cash. Nonetheless, the Jabra Elite 3 fall barely in need of the requirements set by our favorite true wi-fi earbuds on this extremely aggressive value bracket.
Jabra Elite 3 evaluate: What do you get for the cash?
That’s to not say the Elite 3 are missing in terms of options. Certainly, they function wirelessly over the newest model of Bluetooth (5.2) and help Qualcomm’s aptX codec along with bog-standard SBC.
There’s no help for Apple’s AAC codec, nonetheless, making them a more sensible choice for homeowners of Android telephones than the iPhone contingent. And that truth is additional strengthened by the inclusion of three Android-specific options: Google Quick Pair, one-touch Spotify playback and Alexa help.
People who don’t favour Alexa could make use of both Siri or Google Assistant and all three voice assistants could be summoned swiftly utilizing the Elite 3’s controls, which take the type of bodily buttons somewhat than touch-sensitive surfaces.
The Elite 3 are equally proficient in terms of safety from mud and water. An IP55 ranking certifies them capable of face up to water jets from all instructions, making certain they’re greater than able to dealing with a very sweaty exercise or torrential downpour.
When you want to pipe in a little bit of exterior sound throughout stated exercise or downpour, the Elite 3 have a “HearThrough” mode designed to assist enhance consciousness of your environment.
The ultimate noteworthy function – “Discover My Jabra” – can solely be accessed through the Jabra Sound+ companion app. This experiences the situation (utilizing your cellphone’s GPS) of the earbuds once they had been final disconnected. When you lose the Elite 3, you may shortly test this location throughout the app, though in the event that they’ve been moved since being disconnected you are out of luck because the buds themselves don’t have GPS.
Battery lifetime of the earbuds clocks in at as much as seven hours at average quantity, whereas the charging case supplies an additional three full expenses, bringing whole battery life to roughly 28 hours. Ten minutes within the case will give the buds an hour’s price of juice and when you might want to high up the charging case itself, you are able to do so through the included USB-A to USB-C charging cable
Jabra Elite 3 evaluate: What can we like about them?
The Jabra Elite 3 are among the best-fitting and most comfy silicone-tip earbuds I’ve examined over the previous 12 months. In that point, solely the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 have felt as safe and comfortable in my ears with out placing undue strain on my ear canals.
That is all the way down to a mixture of two elements. The earbud housings are formed in such a method that they match the contours of my ears very neatly, whereas the earbud nozzles that fill your ear canals are comparatively shallow and slender. These components, mixed with a alternative of three different-sized pairs of eartips ought to guarantee they’re as comfy for others as they had been for me.
As soon as in my ears, the Elite 3 stayed there it doesn’t matter what I used to be doing, making them a wonderful alternative to be used whereas exercising. I additionally skilled no aching or discomfort throughout extended use. One other huge tick.
Yet another space of energy are the on-earbud controls. By choosing bodily buttons somewhat than contact controls, they keep away from the issues contact delicate controls typically have with unintended activation. The buttons have simply the precise stage of resistance, too, and I discovered pushing didn’t have a damaging impact on affect on match or consolation.
Whereas they don’t ship fairly as a lot element because the Cambridge Audio Melomania 1 Plus – the best-sounding earbuds underneath £100 – there’s little or no to dislike about the way in which the Elite 3 sound for the value.
Their 6mm dynamic drivers provide a well-balanced, participating listening expertise. It leans a bit in direction of the nice and cozy finish of the spectrum however bass copy is spectacular, with lows wealthy and full-bodied with out being overwhelming.
Vocals are communicated crisply and there are 5 EQ presets (Bass increase, Treble increase, Clean, Energise and Speech) out there within the Sound+ app along with the default Impartial profile. I went out of my option to change to the “Speech” choice when listening to podcasts however in any other case caught to Impartial because it sounded cleanest throughout the widest vary of genres.
I additionally wish to draw consideration to the truth that both one of many Elite 3’s buds can be utilized independently in mono mode. This isn’t groundbreaking by any means – most true wi-fi earbuds can be utilized on this method – however one of many complaints I had with the Jabra Elite Energetic 75t was that the left bud couldn’t be used by itself. That annoying constraint has been rectified within the Elite 3 and it’s an excellent factor.
Jabra Elite 3 evaluate: What might be higher?
Whereas I’ve praised the Elite 3’s bodily controls, there’s no option to change or customise them.
A single press on the left bud toggles HearThrough mode on and off, double urgent it hails your voice assistant and urgent and holding it decreases quantity. The identical actions on the precise bud play/pause audio, skip to the following monitor, restart the present monitor and enhance quantity, respectively.
That just about covers each base however anybody who likes to have the ability to allocate particular actions to sure instructions might discover the shortage of customisation a sticking level.
The identical could be stated for the EQ choices. There’s nothing fallacious with the six presets supplied by Jabra however that determine pales as compared with the large quantity supplied by the Artistic Outlier Air V3 and Anker Soundcore Life P3.
Each of these merchandise additionally help you create and save your personal EQ presets, which isn’t one thing the Elite 3 is ready to do. Such an choice could also be added sooner or later nonetheless, with Jabra’s product web page for the Elite 3 stating “additional updates coming quickly” when referencing audio customisation.
Though the HearThrough mode is an interesting inclusion, I didn’t discover it significantly efficient. To have the ability to get an honest sense of what was occurring round me I needed to drop the amount nicely under 50%; something greater and ambient sound struggled to face out in opposition to the backdrop of no matter I used to be listening to.
The ultimate space for enchancment is one that usually crops up in my evaluations of earbuds, and never solely these on the funds finish of the market – put on detection. The Elite 3 robotically flip off after quarter-hour of inactivity however don’t auto-pause when taken out of your ears. That is one function I actually miss when it’s omitted.
Jabra Elite 3 evaluate: Do you have to purchase them?
The Jabra Elite 3 are a strong pair of reasonably priced earbuds from a good producer and only a few earbuds underneath £100 match them in terms of in-ear consolation and surety of match.
They sound good for the cash, too, however at the moment lack the audio and management customisation choices supplied by equally priced options just like the Anker Soundcore Life P3 and Artistic Outlier Air V3.
Each of these choices use contact controls, nonetheless, so if these aren’t your cup of tea and a super-comfy match appeals greater than the superior audio supplied by the Cambridge Audio Melomania 1 Plus, the Jabra Elite 3 will serve you nicely. They’re £10 cheaper, too, which is a bonus.