Jabra Elite Active 65t 2 Years Later – Is It Still Worth It in 2020?

It’s been two years since Jabra released their Jabra Elite Active 65T. We got our hands on it almost 12 months ago and have been testing it to its limit ever since.

So far we’ve tested 

Based on what we’ve reviewed so far, how does the Jabra Elite Active 65T fare? 

 

Design – low key, low profile 

Jabra keeps the low profile look from the Elite Sport with the Jabra Elite Active 65T. The earbuds and charging case are made entirely out of plastic yet still feel premium with its soft-touch matte finish. I like that about it. It’s not a fingerprint magnet, and you won’t be getting micro scratches. 

The earbuds are on the chunky side. They stick out of the ear a bit, which I’m not a fan of; It has a small protrusion pointing forwards towards your mouth with microphones in for phone calls where these earbuds do exceptionally well.

But they’re a lot smaller and ergonomic than the Elite Sport, which is a vast improvement but not as small, light and ergonomic as the Vodo vibe earbuds

Charging Case

The charging case is small and light at 55g and can fit into your pocket. It, unfortunately, features a micro-USB charging port, which is a step back as most devices today use USB-C. 

An issue I had with it at first was opening it. But later, I realized you had to squeeze and open the case at the same time to lift the lid – Who would’ve thought? Jabra probably should go with a magnetic lid, though, so people don’t end up damaging their cases. 

An annoyance for me is the fact that the earbuds don’t snap into the case magnetically, that was an issue I had with the elite sport. The lack of it makes it easy to take out but in inefficient to put in. When you drop it, it goes flying everywhere. Hopefully, Jabra will sort that out someday.

Fits well and fairly comfortable 

The Jabra Elite Active 65T fits securely and fits is comfortable. The nozzle extends nicely into my ear canals. Give it a slight rotation, and it “locks” into place. I’m impressed with how well it fits without the need for wingtips. I also find that the soft-touch texture also aids in how well it grips into your ear. 

Jampacked with Features

What I loved about the Jabra elite sport is the fact it had physical buttons on it, and you could access important functions on them; The Elite 65T active is no different.

Unlike other wireless earbuds where you either have to use your phone to increase the volume, have touch controls that take a learning curve to get used to, or are just limited in functions overall. That isn’t the case with Jabra’s wireless earbuds. 

You can mono-use the Elite Active 65T, but only with the right earbud, when you’re ready to go back to a stereo listening experience, taking the left earbud out of the charging case connects the two immediately. 

You can also pair up to 8 devices in total and have multi-connection to 2 devices at one time.

The Jabra Elite 65t also has an IP56 rating, so you don’t have to worry about rain or water, however, swimming with them is not ideal.

App/Fitness Features

Great wireless earbuds with great features and thought put behind them tend to have a companion app to go along with it. Jabra’s app – available for both iOS and Android – is responsive and straightforward.

It lets you control not only the HearThrough and Focus modes, but also apply EQ, battery info and lets you handle multiple devices. It even has a digital copy of the user manual if you need it. It shows much thought the company has put into their product; I love that.

Unlike the Elite 65T version of these buds, the Active model has a built-in accelerometer, which you can use for fitness tracking. There’s an Activity tab, with a step counter. It doesn’t log runs automatically; you have to open the Jabra Sound+ app, tap Active, and start a run to track. It works well – however, we’d recommend the Jabra elite sport for professional training. It has a VO2 monitor and heart rate monitor, making them the superior choice. They are also a little cheaper.

If you use Active mode, Jabra’s HearThrough feature automatically turns on to allow in ambient noise. It would be nice if HearThough were optional when Active mode is enabled. Although it’s a safety feature for running and hearing your surroundings, sometimes you can hear a little bit too much – even your footsteps hitting the pavement. Sometimes all you want to do is focus on your run and listen to music, so an option would be great.

Another cool feature is playing sound to locate the earbuds; you can even locate the area where your earbuds were last connected after it is back in the case. It’s a neat feature if you find yourself losing them.

Noise Cancellation

The Jabra elite active 65t are great at blocking out sound. They don’t feature noise cancellation, but passive noise isolation from the ear tips and how it fits in your ear makes it on par with some over-ear noise-canceling headphones. Noise never easily seeps into your audio even in noisier environments like an airport or busy street.

As well as that there’s practically no noise leakage from the earbuds, even at 100% volume, which I love. Nothing more awkward when everyone can hear what you’re listening to on a bus.

Battery 

The Jabra Elite 65T Active are rated to last 5 hours on a charge, but the battery life on wireless earbuds tend to vary depending on volume and what features you’re using. We were able to exceed 5 hours a few times when listening to music at medium volume. If you’re using the hear through feature or the active mode, you’ll probably get less. 

But with all that said, if you need some additional hours of battery, the charging case is good for an additional two charges to give a combined 15 hours of listening. Charging the case is very fast, even without the help of USB-C. 

Sound

The sound is pretty good. Probably the best sounding wireless earbud we’ve tested. It’s has a sound balanced with good bass, part of that is probably due to the noise cancellation. It sounds even better with the EQ feature.

Is The Jabra Elite Active 65T Worth it?

The Jabra Elite Active 65T is a pleasure to use. Wireless performance is excellent. I tend to rotate between using it for my laptop and my phone, and it connects immediately with rarely any stutters. While It’s a downgrade from the Elite sport in certain areas fitness like Heart tracking it’s a huge upgrade in areas like sound, comfort and battery life, areas that really matter. Which makes it worth getting 2020.

Jabra Elite Active 65T
  • 9.5/10
    Design - 9.5/10
  • 9/10
    Comfort - 9/10
  • 9.8/10
    Features - 9.8/10
  • 8.5/10
    Sound - 8.5/10
  • 8.7/10
    Battery - 8.7/10
  • 9.5/10
    Value - 9.5/10
9.2/10

Final Thoughts

While other brands claim their wireless earbuds are “truly wireless,” there’s a reliance on your phone to do basic functions like volume controls. At $169.99 The Jabra Elite 65T Active is the epitome of truly wireless. It does what you’d expect from wireless earbuds well, with cool additional features. If you’re looking for a complete pair of wireless earbuds, this is it.

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Victor Ajayi

Self-taught Artist & photographer who happens to travel a lot.

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