Jabra, one of the biggest names in Bluetooth audio wearables has recently released the Jabra Elite 85h Bluetooth headphones, a set of wireless premium headphones packed with some pretty cool features. Coming in at roughly £280, this is a premium set of headphones designed to give you a decent audio experience. They are compatible with Amazon Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant.
Jabra 85h Bluetooth Headphones Review: Design and Comfort
Jabra has produced a gorgeous looking set of headphones with the Elite 85h, which features a design that almost sporty, while also looking quite classy. Woven fabric has been used on the sides and across the top of the headband. This rather stunning looking fabric also features a nano protective coating which protects the inside circuity from water and sweat.
Build-quality is really quite good all around. The frame which is constructed from a sturdy feeling plastic is quite strong and the earcups are quite thick with next to no hollowness.
At first glance it would seem, the Jabra Elite 85h Bluetooth headphones lack important buttons, but a closer glance at the side of the right earcup reveals a set of three buttons carefully blended within the woven fabric, two of which are for volume/track selection and one of which is a pairing button. On the bottom edge of the same earcup, you’ll find an assistant button, a 3.5mm audio connection, a USB-type C charging port and an LED status light. The opposite earcup only features one button and that turns off the headphones built-in voice guide, which tells you vital information such as the battery level or if you’ve successfully paired the headphones with another device.
One button, the Elite 85h is lacking, is a traditional power button. In its place instead is a way to turn them on or off, which is best described as awkward and slightly irritating at times. Powering them on is done by unfolding the headset from its closed position while powering off is done by closing them from their open position. The awkward part is that it can be easy to accidentally turn the headphones off when lifting them from your head, meaning you have to power them back on and wait again for a reconnection.
A really awesome addition to the design of the Elite 85h headphones is the inclusion of sensors within the earcups, which sense when the headphones are over your ears or not. If you lift the headphones off whilst listening to music, they will automatically pause it so you don’t miss anything and as soon as you put them back on, the music begins playing again. I never knew this was a feature I would not only need but love before I got these but now I finally realize what’s been missing from all my other headphones. It isn’t without its flaws though, and sometimes it can take the headphones a few seconds to realize you’re not wearing them.
Comfort is something I look for when it comes to purchasing headphones, seeing as how I wear them pretty much 60% of the time. If headphones aren’t comfortable, it can ruin the listening experience, even if they have awesome audio. Thankfully the Elite 85h headphones are pretty darn comfortable, even during prolonged periods of use. This is thanks to the very thick padding used on the earcups and the headband.
Additionally, the Elite 85h headphones come packaged with a carry case that has room for them, the charging cable and the 3.5mm audio cable. The headphones fit snuggly in the case in their folded shut position.
Jabra Elite 85h Bluetooth Headphones Review: Battery
Simply impressive, is what I would say about the battery life of these headphones. Jabra claims you can get up to 41 hours per charge without using ANC or a year’s worth of standby time. Of course, the results do vary depending on certain factors such as the codec in use and the volume. During my tests of these headphones, I have managed to get 36 hours from a single charge, which is pretty damn impressive.
Charging time is also pretty damn impressive. It takes just 2.5 hours to charge these headphones from flat to 100% using a USB-type C cable. Fast charging is also included, which means if you’re short for time, you can get 5 hours of charge from a quick 15-minute charge.
Jabra Elite 85h Bluetooth Headphones Review: Connectivity
The Elite 85 headphones feature Bluetooth 5.0, which gives them a working range of up to 10 metres, which is pretty respectable seeing as how you will most likely have your phone with you as you use these. Unfortunately, the AAC and aptX codecs aren’t supported by these headphones, which is a bit of a bummer really, that said the sound quality isn’t actually bad.
As is the case with most Bluetooth headphones, these days, the Elite 85h headphones also feature the option to use them with a wire instead of wirelessly, which means they are even compatible with none Bluetooth devices.
A really big part of these headphones connectivity is their ability to connect to a dedicated application, known as Jabra Sound +. This application not only allows you to set up custom equalizers and sound modes but also allows you to upgrade the firmware within the headphones, which in turn will provide upgrades to things like the sound quality and voice assistant options.
Jabra Elite 85h Bluetooth Headphones Review: Sound Quality
Even though they lack AAC and aptX, the Elite 85h headphones sound absolutely stunning, both when used with Bluetooth or cable. The produced sound is crisp and clear, with no distortion at louder volumes.
While the option is there to customize the equalizer with these headphones, I haven’t felt the need to do so, from the default setup, seeing as how the audio already is pretty decent.
I play a wide selection of different genres of music and have yet to find one that these headphones struggle with. While I’m no audio expert, I just can’t find anything that seems wrong about their audio quality.
Jabra Elite 85h Bluetooth Headphones Review: Conclusion
The Jabra Elite 85h headphones are truly stunning, thanks to their comfortable design, upgradeable firmware, awesome features and amazing audio quality. If you have the money to spend, this set of headphones is definitely worth considering.
- Upgradeable firmware
- Great audio
- No AAC or aptX codecs