Danish audio brand Jabra has always come through for the audiophile, with its multiple series of earbuds, varying in form but always offering great functionality. Recently, the company unveiled new flagship earbuds - the Jabra Elite 10. Resembling Jabra’s Elite 85t, with a twist of Dolby Atmos spatial audio along with head-tracking, the Jabra Elite 10 enters a packed segment, but with a decided edge. it will be interesting to see how it fares against its competition.
The Jabra Elite 10 earbuds sport a distinctive design, embracing the classic Jabra design language and seamlessly blending in without drawing unnecessary attention.
One notable feature is the silicone jacket surrounding each earbud’s chassis, which enhances the overall tactile experience and also proves easy to clean. The earbuds boast an IP57 rating for dust and water resistance, making them impervious to sweat and light splashes. Jabra has crafted their proprietary silicone tips with care, featuring a unique connector and ergonomic shape. They are thoughtfully angled for a snug fit, and with four ear tip sizes included, you’re likely to find the perfect one for your ears. The result is an exceptionally comfortable fit that weathers through extended use, whether you’re on a long flight, a car ride, or exercising. The underside of the casing and the angled ear tips strike a balance, keeping unnecessary pressure off your ears. The soft silicone construction further prevents irritation, as opposed to harder plastic alternatives.
The slim case also reflects Jabra’s attention to detail. It comfortably accommodates the earbuds while housing a substantial battery. the rounded edges make it easy to slip into your pocket, and the lid opens smoothly, letting you retrieve the earbuds effortlessly.
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The Jabra Elite 10 earbuds offer tactile controls which some may find more user-friendly compared to capacitive panels. One decided advantage is a reduced susceptibility to accidental presses.
On the left earpiece, a single press switches between the ANC (Active Noise Cancellation) and HearThrough (transparency) modes. A double press can activate either your voice assistant or Spotify Tap, which is customisable through the app. For adjusting volume, a long press comes in handy. Meanwhile, on the right earbud, controls for playback are straightforward: a single press manages playback, two presses skip to the next track, and three presses return to the previous track. Volume can be adjusted with a long hold.
Handling calls is made intuitive with a single tap on either earbud to answer calls and to toggle in and out of mute. Two taps end calls, while a long press will put a call on hold. It’s worth noting that the control layout can be customised via the app, allowing you to tailor actions to specific gestures.
These earbuds come packed with features that enhance the listening experience. Notably, they incorporate Jabra’s Advanced adaptive noise-cancelling technology and offer an adjustable HearThrough transparency mode, allowing you to stay connected with the outside world.
The earbuds are equipped with ear-detection sensors that automatically pause music playback when a earbud is removed. Another useful element is the ability to use a single earbud in mono mode while the other charges in the case.
A notable change is the shift away from Qualcomm chips, which means they do not support the AptX audio codec for Android devices. However, they do support the AAC audio codec and are compatible with the new LE Audio standard, featuring the LC3 audio codec. They come with multipoint Bluetooth pairing, which allows you to pair the earbuds with two devices simultaneously.
Good news for Android users: hands-free access to Google Assistant is supported; simply utter the wake word to engage it. It’s also possible to use Apple native voice assistants, such as Siri, though a button press is required to access it.
A significant addition is Dolby’s Spatial Sound with Dolby head tracking, taking spatial audio to another level. It provides an immersive audio experience akin to Apple’s spatial audio. This feature works well with music, especially tracks remixed in Dolby Atmos, and can elevate the video-watching experience by creating a virtual surround sound environment with dialogue centred on your device’s screen. Importantly, it’s compatible with both Apple and Android devices.
You also get Find My Jabra, which tracks the last known location of your earbuds before they disconnected from your device.
The Elite 10 earbuds are equipped with 10mm drivers that help deliver sound quality that stands out, particularly in quieter environments. When it comes to audio performance, these earbuds hold their own against some of the top wireless earbuds on the market.
In a tranquil setting, the earbuds impress with their clean, finely detailed sound output. The audio feels open, the bass well-defined, making for a rich listening experience. What sets them apart is an ability to offer a more natural sound profile, especially in the midrange, where vocals take centre stage; there’s a sense of depth and refinement, adding a sheen of sophistication to the audio output.
For those liking greater control over their sound experience, the Jabra Sound Plus app offers preset EQ options that let you to tweak the sound to your liking. The app also lets you toggle Dolby Spatial Sound on and off, which notably alters the audio profile.
In essence, the Jabra Elite 10 earbuds deliver a commendable audio experience, striking a balance between clarity and depth while providing users the flexibility to fine-tune their sound.
As a semi-open earbud, the Elite 10 is susceptible to external sounds seeping in, which could pose a hurdle for effective noise-cancelling performance. However, the earbuds deliver on other fronts. They excel at reducing powerful, low-frequency background noise to an almost imperceptible level. They effectively suppress the lows and mids when subjected to high-volume white noise. The ANC level also toggles according to your head position. In comparison to their predecessor, the Elite 85t, the Elite 10 earbuds show significant improvement in reducing ambient noise.
The HearThrough mode functions as expected, utilising ambient microphones to provide a realistic representation of your surroundings. Notably, the signal doesn’t appear to undergo significant EQ adjustments, and you have the option to fine-tune its level through the app.
The earbuds work very well for calls. Your interlocutor is easy to hear, and your voice is clear to them. The Elite 10 earbuds offer Jabra’s adjustable side-tone feature, allowing you to hear a bit of your own voice for a more natural and less fatiguing conversation. Additionally, the convenient one-click mic muting feature is a rare find among wireless earbuds.
The Elite 10 earbuds come with a battery rating of approximately 6 hours with active noise cancellation (ANC) and 8 hours without it. Factoring in the case’s battery, you get a total usage time of around 25-26 hours with ANC and 36 hours without it. The earbuds can also be charged wirelessly. During our review period, the earbuds easily reached the playtime claimed.
The new Jabra Elite 10 earbuds, priced at ₹20,999, offer a compelling package for those seeking a balanced and comfortable audio experience. Their distinctive design and thoughtful attention to comfort, with IP57 dust and water resistance, make them a practical choice for various activities. Like always, the tactile controls, customisable via the app, are user-friendly and effective.
The earbuds are a solid choice for users who prioritise comfort, sound quality, and versatile features over absolute ANC prowess.