Last week we reviewed Jabra’s new Revo Wireless Headphones. (Read the review.) These on-the-ear headphones are comfortable, durable and sound terrific. Jabra is also releasing a corded version of the Revo headphones as well as the upcoming Jabra Vox in-ear corded earphones. For those who prefer headphones that sit in your ear rather than on or around them, the Jabra Vox earbuds may be a terrific option. Let’s take a closer look.
The Jabra Vox earbuds come in a yellow and black box, which presents the Jabra Vox earbuds in a nice, albeit not terribly high-end, manner. Inside the box you will find the earbuds, a protective bag, a quick start guide, and three different colorcore ear gels- so you can get the right fit. This is rather important since in-ear headphones sound best and cause the least amount of ear-fatigue when you use an insert of the proper size for your individual ear.
The 47″ cable on the Jabra Vox earbuds is impressive. The reinforced, square, tangle free cable have has tested and shown to endure over 33 pounds of “pull pressure”. The company opted not to use the woven cloth cords you’ll find on the Jabra Revo. Instead, they went for a smooth rubber cord. It’s a good choice since the fabric cables would have been heavy and would likely have put downward pressure on the earbuds while wearing them. The square cable is thick enough that it won’t get tangled, but flexible enough to be comfortable.
The Jabra Vox earbuds have an in-line microphone and remote that works quite well. The in-line remote and microphone are relatively unobtrusive, but they are easy to grab and control by feel. The upper portion of the controller increases in volume while the lower portion decreases the volume. In the middle of the controller there is a small raised multifunction button. It allows you to play or pause music or answer or reject a call. Quickly double tapping the multifunction button will redial your last number called or skip to the next track. A terrific feature I have rarely seen on in-line remotes is how when you triple tap the multifunction button the music will skip backwards and play the previous track. I love this and often find myself frustrated when using a multifunction button that only plays, pauses or skips tracks forward.
The company saw fit to include what they are referring to as “SnagIt Magnets”. These let you keep the ear buds next to one another when storing them. That means the thinner single cables that runs to each ear bug won’t easily become tangled. It also means you can safely and easily wind and unwind the cable. It’s a great feature, but I can’t help but wish they had put the magnets a bit further down away from the Jabra Vox earbuds. That way the magnets would not only help you keep the earbuds from getting tangled when storing them, but it would also mean you could use them to hold the individual cables behind your ears and out of the way. This is something I love on other earbuds. For example…
ZAGG uses a mechanical means to accomplish this on their SMARTbuds, and I find it quite useful when you want to keep the cables away from your face.
Finally, like the Jabra Vox headphones, the 3.5 mm plug on the Jabra Vox earbuds is at a right angle to the cable so that it sits closer to flush with whichever device into which it is plugged.
Last but not least there are, of course, the earbuds themselves. I saved them for last because the earbuds on the Jabra Vox stand out on many different levels. First off, they are unusually large. The bulk of the earbuds remains outside your ear, while the ear gel sits inside your ear. Jabra describes this design as “sculpted” and notes that it is based on the professional in-ear monitors used by many musicians. This, in turn, allows for “maximum space for powerful sound and strong bass” coming from the 8.6 mm speakers. The design is similar to the Phiaton MODERNA MS 200, which are among the most comfortable earbuds I have used. The same holds true here, although I find the Jabra Vox earbuds actually more comfortable.
Yes, the design may serve the earbuds well in the audio department, but it also offers a huge comfort benefit. The curve of the body of the earbud sits comfortably in the curve of my ear. The design lets the Jabra Vox earbuds go in, stay in and cause minimal ear fatigue– even after hours and hours of use. My earbud-hating wife Elana even found them comfortable.
The company is proud to have partnered with Dolby to bring high-definition sound enhanced by Dolby Digital Plus to the Jabra Vox earbuds. This is accomplished through the Jabra Sound App. The app is a free download and a code to activate it is included with the earbuds. The app does enhance the sound and offers numerous preset audio configurations for whichever style of music you are enjoying. Unfortunately, as I noted in my review of the Jabra Revo Wireless Headphones, the fact that the app appears to initially hesitate while it loads all of the songs from an iDevice’s music library each time you fire it up is more than a bit frustrating. It is worth noting that I do not find a similar lag when using the Jabra Sound App on my HTC One X Android handset! In addition, thanks to Apple’s myopic limitations, the app cannot access music from streaming services. This holds true even if you have downloaded the music to your device. Honestly, as much as I like the added delay, it isn’t worth it to me. (Read more about my issues with it the app here.)
The Jabra Vox Earbuds are among the most comfortable earbuds I have ever used– and I have used a lot of earbuds! The unusual design of each earpiece results in incredible comfort. Add in excellent sound that is, as the company says, “massive” and you have a pair of sub-$100 earbuds that are at the top of the pack in an ever-more crowded market. With or without the Jabra Sound app, I’m impressed by the Jabra Vox earbuds; for me these are a winner. And yes, these are the earbuds that will be coming on vacation with me next month (along with the Jabra Revo Wireless headphones). You can learn more and order yours.
What I Like: Great build quality; Earbuds are quite comfortable; Inline control adjusts volume and lets you play/pause and skip both forward and back; Magnets keep the tangle free cable even more tangle free; Very good audio quality
What Needs Improvement: Jabra Sound App and iOS do not play well together; Magnets keep cable tangle free but would be better if they also held cables behind your ear during use
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample