- They boast great sound quality.
- They feature a stylish design with unique features.
- Outside noises were amplified in certain settings.
- Uncomfortable to wear after 2-3 hours of use.
The Jabra Revo headphones have great sound quality when compared to others in their class, but they will not provide a consistent noise cancelling experience for anyone who needs to block outside noises while wearing them.
For years, headphones became smaller and more compact, moving from the classic Walkman headphones to the iconic Apple earbuds, but now the trend is moving towards studio-quality headphones. Jabra has jumped in on this trend with its Revo headphones; a set of a sleek cans reminiscent of the popular Beats by Dr. Dre units.
The Jabra Revo headphones are certainly attractive, which might be important for anyone looking to sport a high profile set in public. They come in both grey and white and feature a soft plastic design with a bright orange cloth wrapped cord. For those looking for a stylish alternative to Beats, these will definitely fit the bill.
With an aluminum frame, steel hinges, and a shatterproof headband, these headphones are durable. Those planning to tote the Revos around while commuting or travelling will appreciate the ruggedness as well as the ability to fold the headphones down for easier storage.
There are dedicated controls to adjust volume, skip tracks, play music, and pause music on the lightweight headphone cord. The inline controls also feature a microphone to take calls. For those with a case-covered mobile device, the headphone cord has a tapered molding that fits with most thick coverings.
The ear cups are marked as “Left” or “Right” on the inside, which is a simple feature that actually made a difference in getting the headphones on quickly, as opposed to checking the outside of the cups for the “L” and “R” symbols. There is a plug on each ear cup, meaning it the cord can be plugged in on the left or right side, which is also a minor design feature that made a noticeable and positive difference.
The headphones are light, and they are more comfortable than Beats for those wearing glasses (headphones and glasses typically present an uncomfortable situation). Like most other over-the-ear headphones, they become uncomfortable after about two to three hours of steady use.
Sound quality with the Jabra Revo headphone is better than average, and combined with the unique design features and style, they make for a good option in the $200 range. However, better sound can be found for the same price, though it could mean sacrificing on design.
During testing, TechnologyGuide found there was a slight rattle in the right earcup during tracks featuring a heavy mid-range. This effect could not be reproduced to isolate the cause, but it was definitely noticeable on certain tracks.
The telephony performance is great, which is to be expected from Jabra since much of their focus is on headsets and speakerphones. TG also tested the headset in a busy airport on a Skype call and the recipients on the other end were able to hear clearly without catching too much interference from background noise. Problems only arose when the PA speaker came on, but that is to be expected.
On an airplane, noise was blocked out for the most part, without having to have the volume up very high. However, in an office setting, conversations could be heard in a strange muffled, yet almost amplified way, and volume had to be turned up to drown it out. In addition to conversations, it was easy to hear typing on the keyboard, two noise types that are easily drowned out by cheap ear buds.
Jabra never claims that the Revo headphones are noise cancelling, so it really boils down to how the headphones will be used. In situations where sound levels are consistent, they will do a good job. In a situation like an office setting where it is normally quiet they will not block out conversations nearby, and will instead seemingly amplify them in a distracting way. To compare, a pair of Beats Solo headphones will drown out most sounds far better and offer a better noise cancelling experience, although they are not toted as being noise cancelling either. But sound quality shined over a set of Beats Solo headphones, which might be more important to music lovers.
Another feature of the Jabra Revo headphones is the compatible Jabra Sound app for iOS and Android, which imports songs from the user’s library and allows them to create playlists, adjust sound levels, and then uses Dolby Digital Plus technology to enhance the user’s listening experience. Dedicated music fans might use the app, however, for TG it seemed counter-intuitive to open this app up rather than just use the dedicated smartphone music library.
Overall, the Jabra Revo headphones are a great alternative to the Beats in terms of looks and performance. The seemingly small features on the design such as the ability to plug the headphone cable in on both sides, the clearly marked Left and Right ear cups, and the lightweight built boost their appeal compared other $200 headphones.
The Revo headphones are sturdier than a pair of Beats, and better than most in the same price range in terms of overall sound quality. It’s too bad then, that the Revo aren’t great in regards to consistent noise cancellation.
The Jabra Revo headphones are available for $200 at the time of review, but can be found online for as low as $155.