The premium TWS market in India is heavily dominated by the AirPods. But everyone can’t get those because AirPod are heavily integrated into Apple’s ecosystem and does no good for Android users. But recently, quite a few options have emerged in the premium segment from the likes of Sennheiser, Bose, Sony and Jabra.
Speaking of Jabra, the Danish brand recently launched Elite 85t in India, successor to last year’s Elite 75t. It brings Active Noise Cancellation on board. But is it any better than other TWS earphones in the market, or is the ANC just any good or just for namesake? Let’s find out in our full review.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it
In the times of AirPods knockoffs, the Elite 85t continues with Jabra’s original design philosophy, and I like it that way. The 85t look pretty similar to the 75t, but they are distinctive in their way. The Elite 85t buds are slightly bigger and heavier than the 75t’s, and this could be due to the new 12mm drivers in the 85t. The most evident difference between the 85t’s and 75t’s are the more number of microphone holes in the Elite 85t.
These buds are tiny in size and fit into your ears comfortably. Most importantly, they flush in, which was not the case with my previous earbuds; the Bose SoundSports Free, used to look like a mushroom grown out of my ears. Now, Each bud has a physical button with a LED indicator on it. The button on the right earbud can be used to control music, while the left one can be used to play around with sound modes. Also, you can customise the controls using the Jabra Sound+ companion app. Well, the controls are no slouch, but I would prefer a pair of earbuds with touch controls over these.
The 85ts comes with a scanty black charging case, which is easy to carry around in your pocket. The buds sit inside the case firmly using the magnet, and the lid is also magnetic, which easy to open. There’s a charging indicator upfront and a USB C port at the back to charge up the buds. The case supports Qi wireless charging, which is a considerable upgrade over the last generation. So now you can throw up your 85t’s on your nearest wireless charger.
Let’s talk basics
There’s a fact, did you knew that you could connect the Jabra 85t’s to two devices at a time? No, I am not kidding; the 85t’s comes with Bluetooth 5.1, enabling it to connect with two devices simultaneously. So you can connect the 85t’s to your PC and smartphone at the same time and switch between them without any hassle. Of course, it’s not as seamless as AirPods, but it’s quite pleasant, and it’s something new to the non-AirPods segment.
Jabra also brought Apple’s Fit Test, dubbed MyFit. So, MyFit helps you find a perfect fit to get the best out of your 85t’s. Moreover, there quite some nifty features in the Jabra Sound+ companion app, including an equalizer to tune things up your way.
However, the lack of an advanced Bluetooth codec disappointed me a bit. For context, the 85t’s come with support for SBC and AAC codecs and the absence of an advanced Bluetooth codec could be a deal-breaker for the so-called audiophiles.
For a full charge, 85t’s will last you somewhere around five hours with ANC turned on, whereas turning off the ANC would give you around 7-7.5 hours of juice. With the case, you can get up to 20 hours of total battery life which means almost three extra charges. The 85t’s also comes with the quick charge, giving it an hour’s worth of life in 15 minutes.
How good is the ANC?
Well, we have a lot of time to discuss, “How do these earbuds sounds,” but the question of the moment is instead, “How good is the ANC on the Jabra Elite 85t?” Well, if I were to judge, then I’ll say they’re great. These earbuds cancel out most of the ambient sound, but they fail to cancel out my dad shouting at me from a feet or two away from, and that’s a bummer, for me. But as I said, the ANC is quite good enough, I even used them during my flight, and I could not hear a thing around me the whole time, though Jabra needs to improve a bit in ANC, so I can’t hear my dad next time I wear them.
The Jabra Elite 85t also offers HearTrough mode, which uses the microphones to enhance the sound around you to don’t miss out on things while walking around or in a gym. Unfortunately, as a result, it sounds a lot more amplified and unnatural.
On the whole, the noise cancellation on Jabra Elite 85t is perfect, if not great. It’s on par with several pairs of high-end TWS earbuds and headphones though Bose QuietComfort Earbuds manages to outperform the Jabra 85t’s here.
Now, how do Jabra Elite 85t sounds?
The 12mm drivers on the Jabra Elite 85t drivers have quite a balanced sound signature with pretty good details. These earbuds impressed me with their reproduction of lows, and the mid-tones were excellent, and highs are decent enough. As a result, Jabra Elite 85t’s sound pleasing across every genre.
However, the bass doesn’t feel as thumping as some of the other wireless earbuds available in this price segment, and this could be because of 85t’s semi-open design, which results in a wider soundstage. But for those who want to feel some head hitting bass, you can crank it up through the app so it won’t be a matter of concern.
The 85t’s might not be able to satisfy the audiophile inside you, but they’re pretty good for a casual listener who’s mostly listening to music to enjoy themselves. So, if you’re someone who’ll be listening to some casual music, podcasts or using them calls or conferences, then you won’t be disappointed, my friend.
Verdict – The Best AirPods Alterative For Android
The Jabra Elite 85t gets a lot of things right, but it has some shortcomings and. But overall, the Jabra 85t’s are a great pair of earbuds that gets you what you want at a relatively cheaper price. So, you get the ANC which pretty good, then the sound quality is commendable, and you can connect them to two devices simultaneously. Honestly, these are the best earbuds you could get for around ₹ 15,000.
If you’re jealous of your friends bragging about their AirPods at every moment and then and you want to tell how good other earbuds are or could be. Then my friend get these and just put them in their and let them be the judge.