Considering a more active lifestyle? The Jabra Elite 8 Active is the ideal companion on the journey to a healthier you. These true wireless earbuds offer a secure fit, and are more durable than the average earbuds with IP68 dust and water resistance. And they sound pretty good, too, with decent active noise cancellation (ANC), and other handy features such as Bluetooth Multipoint and in-ear detection.
- IP68 water and dust resistant
- Jabra Adaptive Hybrid ANC
- Bluetooth Multipoint connection
- Up to 8-hour battery (32 hours with case) with ANC on
Compared with Jabra's previous Elite 7 Active earbuds, the newer model offers a higher IP68 durability rating, up from IP57. This means that you can wear them while in the pool (up to 1.5m deep). However, Bluetooth doesn't work if the earbuds are submerged, though I suppose you can still relax and listen to music in the pool with them — assuming your phone is water resistant, too. Jabra also claims that the Elite 8 Active has passed rigorous military-grade stress tests, from extreme temperatures to drops to salt-water exposure. The Elite 8 Active's charging case, too, is IP54 splash resistant, and supports wireless charging. Other standard features that you'd find on such mid-range wireless earbuds — Bluetooth Multipoint (connect to two devices at same time) and in-ear detection — are present, too.
Besides being the “world's toughest earbuds”, the Elite 8 Active is said to offer a tighter in-ear fit. I was taken aback at how snug these earbuds felt, given that the ear-tips look quite shallow. Once these earbuds are in, they are practically impossible to dislodge by violent head banging. And yet, they weren't so tight to be uncomfortable. But the passive noise isolation could be better. With just the earbuds in my ear, I could still hear a fair amount of noise, more than I had expected. The earbuds come with tactile, physical control buttons that are not prone to accidental taps or swipes compared with touch-sensitive controls. You can customise them using Jabra's Sound+ app. But by default, the right earbud controls media playback and calls, while the left earbud toggles between active noise cancellation and transparency (Jabra calls this HearThrough) modes.
The Elite 8 Active lacks the Dolby head-tracking feature of the Elite 10. The former only has Dolby Audio spatial sound, a virtual surround feature. Like my experience with the Elite 10, Dolby Audio creates a slightly-wider soundstage, but it seems to make the vocal sound more distant (and softer). Overall, the spatial effect is quite subtle, and not too distracting. For noise cancellation, these earbuds are good, but far from the best. They do a decent job of eliminating fan, and wind noise. The rumble of a car engine is also fairly muted. But higher frequencies like human voices will get through with ease. The transparency mode, though, is pretty good, and sounds more natural than some earbuds I have tested.
When it comes to audio quality, the Jabra Elite 8 Active doesn't sound as detailed as the Elite 10. The bass can get fairly strong, and perhaps give you that extra drive while exercising. The trebles and vocals are clear. The overall sound is fairly neutral, but there's an equaliser you can fiddle with in the app. In short, these earbuds should sound good enough for most folks, especially if they are using it mostly for exercise. Battery life is great — the earbuds can last up to 8 hours with ANC enabled. They are currently on sale till the end of the year (S$278 now, usual price S$308). Get them on Shopee, Lazada, and Amazon SG (cheapest).
Note: Review unit provided by Jabra.
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