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  • Cheryl Tan

Jabra Elite 4 Active Review: Affordable Exercise Earbuds!

These earbuds were announced at CES 2022 and well, they’re definitely a great option for people who need a more rugged pair of earbuds. We have the Jabra Elite 4 Active with us today, and just like how many people liked to use the Elite 65t and 75t for exercise, these are a great, affordable option for exercise, or even if you just want something that sounds good and will stay in your ears securely.

Let’s talk design first, starting with the case. The case is actually more similar to the shape of the Elite 75t’s case than the new Elite 7 Pro’s, surprisingly. It is, however, ever so slightly taller, wider and deeper. Aside from that, it’s really quite similar. You get the Jabra wording on the front, along with a charging LED, and a USB-C port on the rear. Unfortunately, this doesn’t support wireless charging, so yeah.

As for the earbuds, there’s a very angular look to them, thanks to the faceplate. It’s certainly a very different look from the Elite 7 Pro, 75t and such, which were more rounded. There are three colours, black, navy and an interesting mint green that I, unfortunately, didn’t have the chance to get.

While the earbuds don’t have the same ShakeGrip coating featured on the Elite 7 Active, they still sit very securely in the ear. They’re also very compact, so they’re pretty much perfect for exercise since they don’t stick out much.

Moving on to the app, it’s the standard Jabra Sound+ app. There’s ANC on these, so you get the option to toggle between ANC, HearThrough and off, there’s the music presets and the EQ feature, and that’s about it it. There really isn’t much to these earbuds, feature-wise. They don’t even have in-ear detection. That being said, the ANC on these isn’t too bad at all. While it can’t be compared to more expensive competitors, it works well and cancels out a pretty good amount of noise.

While the earbuds look like they’re touch control since the faceplate is integrated into the shell, it’s actually working on a physical control system, so you’ll have to press the faceplate to get to the button underneath.

As for the controls, it’s one press on the left earbud to toggle ANC or HearThrough, double press to pull up the voice assistant and a long press to lower the volume. On the right, a single press for play/pause, a double press to skip tracks forward and a triple press to skip backwards. A long press and hold raises the volume. There’s no way to edit the control system though, so yeah.

Connectivity-wise, there’s Bluetooth 5.2 on these but for some reason, I noticed quite a bit of stuttering when I was in subway stations, which is a bit of a disappointment. There’s also aptX Adaptive and SBC, but surprisingly, no AAC support for some reason.

Battery life is pretty good, considering there’s ANC. It’s at 7 hours in the earbuds, with an additional three charges in the case for a total of 28 hours.

Since these are exercise earbuds, they do come with an IP57 dust and water resistance rating, which is nice. Additionally, if you register the earbuds in the Sound+ app, you get a two-year warranty against dust and water damage, which is excellent.

As for mic quality, it’s not too bad I think. In a quieter environment, it’s pretty decent, but as usual, people will know you’re using earbuds.

The sound quality, though, is pretty good. Now, you’re not going to get these for their accuracy, but because these have an emphasis on the lows and the highs get pretty bright, they’re definitely energetic, which is nice for a pair of exercise earbuds. The bass is definitely powerful and you’ll notice this if you listen to a lot of bass-heavy music. That being said, it doesn’t get distorted or boomy, which is good.

The mids are slightly recessed in my opinion, which is fine, and you get pretty energetic and bright treble, which I definitely enjoy. All this is tweakable with the music presets and EQ, although it’s not very granular with just five bars or adjustment points.

The soundstage is slightly compressed and not as wide and spacious as I would have liked, but at the S$179 or US$120 price point, I can’t really nitpick too much.

These are a great budget option for people who need something to accompany them on their workouts, well done Jabra.

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