Competition is tough in the wireless earbuds space. It is not just the wider range of alternatives that users now have at almost every price point, but also the fact that newer earbuds are offering real upgrades in terms of the experience. Jabra has an interesting strategy. They have the Jabra Elite 75t and the Jabra Elite Active 75t, both priced quite close to each other and vying for the same user demographic in a way. But then again, it is fighting the likes of the Apple AirPods at this point.
The Jabra Elite Active 75t is currently retailing for around Rs 15,999 on Amazon.in which makes this a tad more expensive than the Jabra Elite 75t which is selling for around Rs 14,999. This also means that the Samsung Galaxy Buds+ (around Rs 11,999) are keeping an eye on how these battles are panning out. But before you say that there is no difference between the Jabra Elite Active 75t and the Jabra Elite 75t so to say, hang on and take a look at the critical difference—additional ruggedness for your fitness routine. And that is the target demographic within the larger demographic, which Jabra wants to cater to.
Design: The Blue Looks Good
This is where the biggest difference is. The Jabra Elite Active 75t, while retaining the same size and design as the Jabra Elite 75t, now gets the IP57 water and dust resistance rating. This means these wireless earbuds are now sweat resistant as well as better insulated in case of a dip in water. That makes these more versatile for gym use as well as outdoors, irrespective of weather. The Elite 75t have the IP55 rating, which makes them water and dust resistant and while they could have very well survived the gym sessions with you, the Active variant just has that added insurance of protection. In fact, each silicon EarGel tip gets the special dry film soft touch grip coating which lets it stay put even if you are sweating.
Apart from that, the Jabra Elite Active 75t retain the very good looks of its sibling. That means they are one of the best-looking wireless earbuds you can find. The Navy Blue colour adds a unique charm to the personality too. You have the option of the Copper colour too. The compact charging case remains a highlight and the buds themselves are quite light to wear, each weighing 5.5 grams. The only shortcoming, and that too is subjective, is that the case doesn’t offer the wireless charging option—though a wireless charging case, Jabra says, is coming soon. At this price, one would perhaps have expected that. Nevertheless, it isn’t a deal breaker, simply because the rest of the experience is absolutely fantastic.
Sound: Versatility And Personalization
The Jabra Elite Active 75t is very versatile as far as the sound signature is concerned. In each ear are 7mm audio drivers, which though not the largest, are still tuned very well. I was surprised with how good the Elite 65t were a couple of years ago, and then the brilliance of the Elite 75t which has always remained at the very top of my earbuds recommendations list for anyone who has a budget around the Rs 15,000 price point.
The sound of the Jabra Elite Active 75t is vibrant and yet is very flexible whether you are listening to something with vocals or bass. If your playlists are filled to the brim with peppy music, this is the sort of sound signature that you will love. If I may say so, this is very close to the Sennheiser neutrality that I have often praised. At the same time, if your music library is more about bass heavy music, then slightly tweak the EQ in the Sound+ app and you are set for that too. For voice, such as podcasts, leave it at the out-of-the-box setting and clarity is fantastic.
You don’t have to wait too long to notice the Jabra Elite Active 75t’s ability to reproduce the finer details which a lot of other buds miss out on—either because they just can’t, or these get drowned out because the ambient noise isolation isn’t as good. The consistency of connectivity is good, and I did not notice any dropouts at all—either with any individual bud behaving eccentrically or the pair dropping connectivity. And to be able to reproduce that across the board—iOS, Android, iPadOS and macOS just lends credence to the fact that Jabra has thought this through.
What I do miss is any sort of noise cancellation, which a lot of its rivals have. Still, Jabra has integrated into each earbud something called the pressure release vent. When you choose how much HearThrough of the ambient world you want, this vent allows for the nearby sounds to stream in.
Battery: Charge It And Rest Easy
These will last you a long time on a single charge. The Jabra Elite Active 75t, with most of my listening at just less than 50% volume on the earbuds, last me close to 8 hours. That, in the world of wireless earbuds, is fantastic. Top up using the charging case, and it works out to a brilliant 28 hours in total before you need to reach for the charger. It is more than what the AirPods offer, with the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 and the Samsung Galaxy Buds+ giving it competition.
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The App: A Worthy Companion
The Jabra Sound+ app for Android and the Apple iPhones is a companion app that really adds to the entire experience. You can tweak sound modes, enable or disable Hear Through, choose from music presets including Bass Boost, Smooth, Energize, Speech and Treble Boost. You can also alter the sound equalizer for when you are on a call, check for firmware updates and set the voice assistant. Most earbuds don’t always get a companion app as capable as this, which does leave a bit of a gap in the experience.
There is the new MySound profile which you can configure too. Basically, it runs you through a series of tests in which you have to hear for sounds at different frequencies and volume levels and respond in affirmative when you hear a sound. This allows the sound for your Jabra Elite Active 75t to be best set for your ears and listening style.
All in all, the Jabra Elite Active 75t’s companion app does add a lot to the experience. Sennheiser and Samsung do come close with their respective apps for the Momentum True Wireless 2 and the Galaxy Buds+ respectively, but most other brands still have a long way to come to match with Jabra’s efforts.
The Last Word: You Aren’t Missing Much
A very cool and sophisticated design, rugged enough to be your companion at the gym, versatile sound signature, great battery life and an app that really lets you tweak the sound as you would like it—that is the Jabra Elite Active 75t in a nutshell. Really, what more could you want?