Jabra just launched its flagship wireless earbuds late last month and I have been using the Elite 10 for almost a month. Here are my thoughts and niggles about this premium wireless earbuds.
What’s in the box?
You get the earbuds, a charging case, a USB-C to USB-A cable, a warranty and warning leaflet, and three sizes of EarGels (the M size comes pre-installed).
Design and Comfort
The Jabra Elite 10 earbuds have a compact and ergonomic design. They are comfortable to wear for extended periods of time, and they fit snugly in the ear without feeling bulky or heavy.
Jabra said the earbuds have a semi-open design for comfortability when wearing them for long hours, which I can attest is true.
The shiny multifunctional button featuring laser-etched Jabra’s logo is easily noticeable even from a distance, and the earbuds’ velvety rubberised surface feels so premium and smooth to the touch.
However, the colour I have with me, Cream, is more prone to blemishes and dirt. I would have preferred Titanium Black or Cocoa, as they hide imperfections better.
The buttons on the earbuds are responsive, and I wish more brands would start using buttons instead of touch, because with buttons, I don’t have to worry about mistouching or not registering.
The earbuds come with four different sizes of ear tips, or EarGels as Jabra calls them, so you can find the perfect fit for your ears. The M size comes pre-installed.
Due to the triangle-ish design of the earbud nozzle, it might be hard to search for compatible third-party eartips. You can’t buy the EarGels separately either, but you can contact Jabra, and they should be able to send you replacements.
The Elite 10 earbuds are also IP57 dust and water resistant, while the case is IP54, making them ideal for use during workouts or in wet conditions. But don’t go swimming or take a shower with it.
Due to the design of the charging case, it can’t stand upright on its own. So, the case has to be flipped upside down in order for it to stand.
Sound and Call Quality
Just a disclaimer: I’m not an audiophile, and sound quality is a very subjective thing. Personally, the Jabra Elite 10 earbuds offer excellent sound quality, with well-balanced bass, mids, and highs. The bass is punchy and present but not overpowering, and the mids are clear and detailed.
The highs are crisp and extended, but not harsh. Overall, the earbuds produce a rich and engaging listening experience.
The Elite 10 earbuds support Dolby spatial sound, which can provide a more cinematic listening experience for movies and TV shows. However, Dolby spatial sound is only available on devices that support it.
They can generate the virtual surround sound effect using head tracking, ensuring that the center channel remains in front of you, even when you rotate your head.
For me, I just turned off the spatial audio as I found it to be messing with the music, and they don’t sound quite right with it turned on. But I use it when I’m watching YouTube, as it enhances the video-watching experience.
Jabra is well-known for its call quality, and it doesn’t disappoint. The call quality is good, and the people on the other side of the call have no trouble listening to me, even when I’m in a rather noisy environment.
Active Noise Cancellation and Transparency Mode
The Jabra Elite 10 earbuds have active noise cancellation (ANC), which can effectively block out ambient noise. The ANC is especially effective at blocking out low-frequency noises, such as the hum of an aeroplane engine or the rumble of a train.
However, the ANC is not perfect, and it doesn’t completely block out all ambient noise due to the design of the earbuds, which is intentional. For example, you may still be able to hear high-frequency noises, such as voices or traffic.
Jabra’s HearThrough, a.k.a. transparency mode works very well. I use this when I’m walking down the street or talking to someone. Jabra’s six-mic array captures vocals clearly, and I have no problem hearing the traffic noises.
Jabra’s Sound+ app
The Jabra Elite 10 earbuds come with a companion app called the Jabra Sound+ app. The app is available for both iOS and Android devices. It offers a variety of features and settings to help you customise your listening experience.
The Elite 10 covers a wide range of connectivity features. They come equipped with Bluetooth 5.3 and offer convenient Google and Microsoft’s Swift Pair (though this one is not working on my Windows 11 laptop for reasons unknown).
They also support the standard SBC and AAC audio formats right from the start, and there’s a planned update to include the new LC3 audio format in the near future. Too bad it doesn’t support LDAC and AptX.
Additionally, the earbuds excel at connecting to two devices simultaneously, making it easy for for me to answer calls and enjoy video or music without any hassle.
Here are some of the features in the Sound+ app:
ANC: The app allows you to toggle ANC on and off, and also adjust the level of ANC.
HearThrough: HearThrough is a feature that allows you to hear your own voice while talking on the phone or using voice assistants. This can help you to speak more naturally and clearly. You can also adjust how weak or strong the transparency mode should be.
Equalizer: The five-band equalizer allows users to adjust the bass, mids, treble, and presence levels of the sound. The preset EQ options are a good starting point for users who are not sure how to adjust the equalizer themselves.
SmartPause: SmartPause is a feature that automatically pauses the music when you remove one of the earbuds from your ear. It resumes playback when you put the earbud back in.
MyControls: This allows you to customise the controls on the earbuds. You can choose which functions are assigned to each click.
Voice Assistant: You can use Google Assistant with it, but it doesn’t seem to support Siri.
Spotify Tap: You can access Spotify straight away without touching your phone.
The Elite 10 has a battery life of roughly six hours when using ANC and eight hours without ANC. When factoring in the charging case’s battery, the total usage time extends to approximately 27 hours with ANC activated and 36 hours without ANC. Personally, it lasted longer than six hours with ANC always turned on for me.
As per Jabra’s information, it may take up to three hours to completely recharge the earbuds when they are completely depleted via wired USB-C cable.
However, a quick five-minute charge should give you approximately one hour of listening time. It also supports Qi wireless charging.
Is it worth your money?
The Jabra Elite 10 earbuds are a great option for those looking for a pair of wireless earbuds with good sound quality, reliable ANC, and a comfortable fit that I don’t mind wearing for hours.
The earbuds have a number of useful features, such as HearThrough, multi-point pairing, and customisable controls. Overall, the earbuds are a great value for the price. They offer a good balance of features, performance, and price.