While attending the Gadget Show 2013 a visit to the Jabra stand ended with me leaving with a pair of the new Jabra Revo Wireless Bluetooth on-ear headphones that was just recently released here in the UK. Here are my impressions.
Jabra Revo Wireless design and features
I got my hands on the matt black version of the Revo Wireless, which with their hint of red trimming, look stylish and gives them a bit of stand-out design, something that is very important in today’s fashion driven market. Another thing that struck me about these headphones is that they seem to be sturdy, with Jabra having used an aluminium frame and steel hinges to ensure that the headphones can sustain the rigors of long wear and travel. The materials used is also reflected in that they are slightly more heavy than similar sized headphones, without leaving a feeling that they are too heavy. In my opinion the additional weight from quality material and build is more than welcome, and it does not impact on comfort of wearing the headphones over a longer period of time. The headband itself is said to be shatterproof, and I take their word for it. They are not overly padded, but enough to sit comfortably. For travel purposes, the earcups fold onto each other for easy storage.
While the key feature is wireless Bluetooth connectivity, the Jabra Revo Wireless also comes with a USB charging cable and a 3.5mm headphone cable with integrated line controller, which comes in useful should you run out of charge on the headphones. Speaking of battery time, you can expect up to 12 hours of playtime from a full charge, with USB charging taking up to 4 hours (often less). On a side note, I like the quality feel of the associated cables, and the fact that they are bright orange. A nice change from the often dull cables found with headphones.
Let’s get back to the Bluetooth functionality of the Jabra Revo. Connection and pairing is easy, using the switch on the right earcup. Simply switch and hold it for 3 seconds to access pairing mode, unless your smartphone/tablet is NFC enabled, in which case you can simply switch them on and hold your device against the left earcup (the NFC zone) and pairing should take place automatically. Once you got your device paired and ready for streaming, you can start using the nifty earcup touch controls of the Jabra Revo Wireless. Controls include volume up and down, pause/play, skip songs forward and backwards, accept calls, switch between calls etc. Here is a quick explanation of the different controls:
The touch controls might not be as intuitive and sleek as those of the Parrot Zik, but they work well and allows you to not fiddle with your smartphone/tablet for every little control. There is also a voice guide that alerts you of what to do next, battery levels etc.
Jabra Revo Wireless audio performance
Straight out of the box I was quite impressed with the audio performance of the headphones. The 40mm dynamic drivers deliver a punchy sound without relying too much on the bass, allowing the high and mid-range frequencies to shine as well. So far I have been using them to listen to everything from jazz to rock and hip hop, and they handle most genres quite well. They don’t have active noise cancelling, but the memory foam earpads and fit is designed to block out as much noise as possible, as well as to avoid sound leakage. Most on-ear headphones will have some sound leakage, and so does the Jabra Revo Wireless when volume is turned up. Then again, you should not have to crank the volume to full blast to enjoy the sound of these headphones.
The Jabra Revo Wireless shine the brightest when paired with the Jabra Sound App, providing Dolby Digital Plus sound enhancement, and the difference can really be heard. The app is available to download for free on both iOS and Android devices, but beware that you need the activation code that comes with the purchase of the headphones (a bit unnecessary in my book). Once you have the app activated, a tap on the middle of the left earcup launches the app, which accesses any audio file stored on your device, displaying associated album art etc. It also gives you access to a range of equaliser settings, as well as giving you the option to adjust the EQ settings yourself. A few issues with the Jabra Sound App; it does not play DRM protected audio files, and it can’t access cloud stored music. For Android and Google Music users, the app also can’t seem to locate any audio files that are ‘pinned’ to your device from the Google Music App.
Overall i’m very impressed with the Jabra Revo Wireless headphones. I like their design and overall build quality, and the sound produced is both well balanced and clear. If you have the chance, i recommend using the Jabra Sound App with them as the Dolby Digital does make a difference to the sound performance.
|Jabra Revo Wireless headphones|
|Jabra Revo Wireless Stereo Headphones|
|Jabra Revo Wireless Stereo Headphones|