Headphone class S (“Mercedes” scale A, B, C, E, S)
Here we go
Headphone manufacturers do not have it easy, because this market is as crowded as the smartphone market. The Danish JABRA belongs to the premium segment and does not try to fight its competitors with the simplest method, i.e. the price. In the premium segment (this is not about the segment of audiophile products), however, you come across such powerhouses as Apple, Samsung, Sony, Sennheiser, etc. In the EVOLVE 2 BUDS model, JABRA does not want to “dig with the horse” and came up with a slightly different patent to promote this just the model. That is why the EVOLVE brand is in the name, which so far has mainly included “fancy” office headphones with a headband and a microphone. EVOLVE 2 BUDSthese are TWS headphones designed, like the entire series, for hybrid work, i.e. mainly for calls through various types of applications for virtual calls and meetings. JABRA emphasizes the Microsoft Teams certificate, but after connecting to any device, these headphones will of course also be used for calls via any other platform. So I checked whether a very narrow specialization is a good patent for headphones and whether the new Jabra headphones are only suitable for hybrid work and nothing else.
Main advantages and disadvantages of the JABRA EVOLVE 2 BUDS headphones
Advantages of the JABRA EVOLVE 2 BUDS:
- Reputable brand
- Extensive mobile application
- Very good workmanship
- IP57 – can be used in the rain and during training – can withstand immersion in shallow water for up to 30 minutes
- 3 sizes of EarGels
- Elegant design
- Option to work with one, any handset
- A very good ANC system
- With the smallest rubber bands, you can forget about them in your ears, which is crucial for longer hybrid work
- Very convenient buttons to operate – other manufacturers should copy this solution
- Very convenient connection of two devices at the same time – usually a smartphone and a computer
- 6 microphones
- PeakStop function suppresses the loudest passages
- Support for voice assistants
- Long talk time – up to 5 hours without a charger
- Fast charging time – 5 minutes equals 1 hour of talk time
- Qi wireless charging case
- Easy pairing
- Quick connection when removed from the case
- Jabra Direct and Jabra Xpress on your computer
- Bluetooth dongle in two USB versions – to provide a better range (up to 20 meters) and a more stable connection
Disadvantages of the JABRA EVOLVE 2 BUDS:
- In our case, the Bluetooth dongle in the USB-A version, not C
- These headphones are deceptively similar to the Jabra Elite 7 Pro model from the end of 2021, although the manufacturer claims that this model is the successor of the Evolve 65t (BUDS are 30% smaller than them)
- Very high price
- No easy function to turn ANC on or off during an ongoing call
How do we rate design and comfort?
In the case of headphones for work, in addition to the quality of the sound offered (also from microphones), the comfort of the headphones themselves is very important, because they will be in our ears for at least several hours a day. The set includes 3 sets of different rubber bands, so everyone should choose something for themselves. The headphones themselves do not have additional “headbands” (which looks elegant), so the whole device must fit in the shell of our ear. People with very small ears must therefore test them beforehand. The headphones quickly connect to selected devices, which is also crucial in everyday use. The design itself is “business”, so with these headphones we will look good in a business lounge at the airport or in a fancy office on the top floor of a skyscraper. For me, the only downside to these headphones is that that they isolate our ear canals very well, which means that we are very separated from the sounds of the environment in them, and we also feel a slightly different pressure in the ears. Some users may feel uncomfortable with this even with HearThrough enabled. The solution then is to use the smallest rubber bands, which will make the headphones themselves more comfortable, but they will probably also isolate us slightly less effectively from noise (however, the problem of pressure disappears then completely).
Big applause is definitely due to Jabra for its buttons for operating the headphones – it is still the most convenient way to change among all the headphones I have tested from different manufacturers.
EVOLVE 2 BUDS can easily operate in mono mode, i.e. we can only have one earphone in the ear. It’s useful when we always want to know what’s going on in the open space 🙂
Specification and personalization
JABRA EVOLVE 2 BUDS use Bluetooth 5.2 to connect to devices. Using the Jabra dongle, they are to operate within a radius of up to 20 meters from the computer. In our case, the computer only had USB-C sockets, so you would have to use an adapter to connect the adapter from the set. In total, we can connect 8 different devices to the headphones, but 2 can be connected at the same time. The headphones have 3 microphones each: one for recording our voice, the second for ANC and the third for sound correction. BUDS meet the IP57 standard, so water and sweat are not terrible for them. Phones support voice assistants – on the iPhone we have access to Siri and Alexa.
After pairing the BUDS with your smartphone, download the Sound+ app. In it, update the software and fully personalize the sound, ANC and keyboard shortcuts according to our personal preferences. The application even tests our hearing and asks about the year of birth, which resembles a professional examination of this sense at the doctor.
How do we rate sound quality?
When it comes to sound quality, two things are important in headphones for work: how we hear, but also how they hear us. The operation of the ANC system is also important, because the great sound quality will not matter if it is drowned out by the noise of the airport, TV or other people’s conversations. The JABRA EVOLVE 2 BUDS sound good, but they are dominated by the midrange, not the fleshy bass. These are headphones for work, so the bass would be tiring in the long run. If we want to have more bass, we should invest in, for example, the sports Jabra Elite 7 Active or the “normal” Elite 7 Pro model. They are also almost half the price. The ANC system in combination with well-chosen EarGels works really well and dampens all, even quite loud ambient sounds. BUDSy is a very good choice for a noisy open space or a teleconference while walking on a busy street. The sound from the microphones also “works” and we are perfectly heard even when our surroundings are very loud.
How long does the battery last?
The battery in EVOLVE 2 BUDS lasts about 5 hours when we talk. This time is extended by about 3 hours when we use them to listen to music. In total, with charging from the case, headphones without a socket can work for over 30 hours. 5 minutes of charging will give us an hour of work. This is enough time that provides full comfort for the whole day of hybrid work, because none of us plans to conduct 8-hour teleconferences without any breaks.
The JABRA EVOLVE 2 BUDS headphones cost over Euro 45 and this is their only drawback. They offer very good sound, are comfortable, have good microphones, ANC works great in them, they meet the IP57 standard. The manufacturer profiles them as a product from the B2B segment, mainly used for hybrid work, and it is probably not a marketing fiction. It should be remembered that the EVOLVE 2 BUDS do not race in the race for the meatiest bass and big stage space. These are rather “daily” headphones that resemble the characteristics of the most popular TWS headphones, i.e. Apple Airpods (not Pro). And it is Airpods that will be their biggest and direct competition. EVOLVE 2 BUDS will work great when we happen to conduct teleconferences outside the home, in crowded, noisier locations.
We love: the whole
We don’t like: the prices!
Who are the JABRA EVOLVE 2 BUDS headphones for:
- People who have unlimited cash resources
- People who like to use the most “fancy” gadgets
- People who conduct teleconferences very often
- People who are looking for headphones with excellent ANC quality
- People who are looking for headphones with excellent microphones
Who are the JABRA EVOLVE 2 BUDS headphones not for:
- For the frugal
- For people who are disturbed by headphones in the ear canal in the long run