Last fall, we met with the JBL TUNE 120TWS Bluetooth headphones. The model turned out to be very interesting both in terms of sound and in terms of sound insulation. But the maximum isolation can not always be attributed to the merits. No, of course, to achieve a clear sound when the wind is noisy in the headphones, other people’s conversations and the roar of jackhammers from the construction site are heard, it is completely impossible. But, on the other hand, talking about the high quality sound of any headphones used on the street is generally difficult. Well, it doesn’t work out there to fully enjoy Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, alas. But to hear the approaching car or the shout of a passerby is necessary, and sometimes vital.
JBL engineers tried to combine the seemingly incompatible with a couple of new technologies: Ambient Aware and TalkThru. For their work, the headphones need a built-in microphone, which, as you probably already guessed, should capture and transmit external sounds along with the main audio stream. Ambient Aware technology allows the headphones to skip the loudest noises that can be a danger signal on the street. When you enable this function, screams, car signals and other loud sounds will be highlighted and instantly transmitted to the user through the speaker. TalkThru technology works similarly to Ambient Aware, with the only exception that when it is connected to the user, absolutely all external sounds are transmitted through the microphone at full volume, and the main audio channel is muted. You probably have come across a situation more than once when you had to remove the earphone from your ear in order to hear a passerby’s question or pay at the checkout counter in a store. With JBL LIVE 300TWS this is not required. Simply swipe your finger on the left earphone, as TalkThru will be connected. She turns off just as quickly.
|Jbl Live 300TWS|
|Emitters||Dynamic, 5.6 mm|
|Range of reproduced frequencies, Hz||20–20,000|
|Sensitivity at 1 kHz, 1 mW, dB||95|
|Maximum power, mW||n / a|
|Profiles Bluetooth||A2DP 1.3, AVRCP 1.5, HFP 1.6|
|Frequency Bluetooth, GHz||2,402–2,48|
Ambient Aware and TalkThru Technologies
Compatible with Amazon Alexa and Goggle Assistant
Protection against splashes, moisture, sweat (IPX5)
Case with charging function
|Battery||Headphones: Li-ion, 55 mAh / 3.7 V
Case: Li-Ion, 450 mAh / 3.7 V
|Battery life, h||6 + 14 (when using the case)|
|Estimated price *, rub.||7 990|
* The average price for Yandex.Market at the time of writing.
⇡ #Contents of delivery
The headphones come in a compact cardboard box, traditional for JBL portable products. Inside, in addition to the headphones themselves, we found the following accessories:
- charging case;
- two sets of additional ear pads of different sizes;
- three sets of additional silicone holders of different sizes;
- USB-C cable for charging the built-in battery in the case;
- printed user manual for the device and a warranty card.
The delivery set was very pleased. It is especially pleasant that the manufacturer made sure that the headphones are guaranteed to fit anyone, putting in the box not only three sets of silicone ear pads, but also four pairs of holders with different sizes of the rim.
⇡ #External view
JBL products have always been distinguished by their bright, and sometimes even eccentric appearance, as well as the ability to choose a color scheme. The new model of headphones in this regard is no exception. Firstly, the user can choose one of four primary colors, which will be painted headphone housings, silicone elements and case. It is black, white, pink and dark blue. We got the last option for testing.
The case of each of the headphones is made in the form of a low barrel, slightly tapering to the outside, on which the inscription “JBL” flaunts. They are quite compact, although they look quite massive in the ears.
Noteworthy is the combination of colors in each of the four possible colors for the JBL LIVE 300TWS. In our case, bright blue metallic harmoniously combines with light blue bordering and matte blue, which painted the inner surfaces of the headphones, as well as silicone elements. These headphones are very nice to hold in your hands – the quality of the materials from which they are made deserves the highest rating.
The outer panels of the cases have not mechanical buttons, but touch pads that recognize both pressing and simple gestures. Status indicators are hidden on the inner surface, next to the charging pads and optical sensors that monitor the installation of the earphone in the ear.
The microphone for operating the kit as a headset is located below on the right earphone. But on top of each case there is another tiny hole. Most likely, additional microphones are hidden behind them to work the new features of Ambient Aware and TalkThru.
Silicone ear cushions on the headphones are standard. They can be replaced by removing from any other models, except that you can probably choose the color only for headphones in black and white. But the removable silicone borders on the JBL LIVE 300TWS are unique. That is why the manufacturer put four different pairs in the package so that each user can choose the right size for himself. One set of borders does not have an ear stop at all.
The charging case is made of the same plastics that the headphones themselves are made of. In our case, the outer surfaces of the case are made of plastic painted in bright blue metallic, and the inner surfaces of the exact same as the inner sides of the headphones are made of dark blue matte. Of course, such a case quickly collects fingerprints and minor scratches, but headphones are generally a product with a very limited shelf life, so there’s nothing to be done.
Case form traditional for JBL wireless headphones. In this case, it is closer to the classical parallelepiped than to the oval pebble. The hinged lid is equipped with a magnetic holding lock and an elastic silicone insert that tightly fixes the headphones during transport. In their places, the headphones are also held by individual magnetic mounts.
The charging case is internally equipped with an LED status indicator and a sync button. Outside, on the bottom surface is a USB Type-C port for connecting a charging cable. The connector is ringed by an LED indicator informing the user about the charging status.
In general, the design of the new items worked out almost perfectly. You feel that in your hands you have a high-quality product of the premium segment, and not the work of an unknown manufacturer. Now let’s see how this device will show itself in business.
⇡ #Connection and management
We tested the JBL LIVE 300TWS with several Samsung and Xiaomi smartphones, as well as an ASUS Zenbook. Headphones were connected to each of the devices quickly and without any problems. It was enough to put them in search mode, after a couple of seconds the headphones were already detected in the Bluetooth section of the smartphone or laptop. Also, when you first turn on, you will need to pair the headphones themselves with each other. If suddenly something does not work out, based on intuition and your own experience, there is always a paper instruction with pictures at hand, where all the settings are explained in detail.
The touch panel on the right earphone is used to control playing music tracks and phone conversations. Well, on the left – to control the functions of Ambient Aware and TalkThru and calling the voice assistant. But there is one caveat. By default, headphones work only with simple taps, and swiping movements are not recognized. By tapping, as well as double or triple tapping, you can stop, start or rewind the track being played, accept or end the call, connect or disconnect the microphone, and also call the Amazon Alexa voice assistant or Google Assistant, if installed on your smartphone. But adjusting the volume on the right earphone and controlling the functions of Ambient Aware and TalkThru on the left are carried out with sweeping movements, which can be connected only through the proprietary mobile application.
There are few control settings in the application. For the right earphone, you can only connect the volume control, and for the left, you can connect one of two functions – either Ambient Aware or TalkThru, whichever is more important for you. However, both functions can be either connected or disabled directly through the application. So, for example, for most, it will be more convenient to establish a TalkThru connection through the headphone to quickly respond to the outside world, and leave the control of Ambient Aware technology through the application. We went outside – turned on Ambient Aware and forgot about it before returning home.
The only strange thing is that by default gestures in the headphones are not connected. Maybe this is due to the fact that the developers want the user to necessarily install the JBL application on their smartphone, without which the full range of features is still not available. Also note that, despite the presence in the application interface of lines with a description of all the other control methods associated with pressing, there is no way to change them. Probably, it touched the future.
But the gestures of the mobile application are not limited to setting gestures. The manufacturer implemented in it a very convenient electronic equalizer with several predefined profiles, as well as with the function of adding your own profiles. To customize the equalizer, you need to set several points on the graph and move them up, down or to the side to change the level of a particular frequency range. Very convenient and clear.
Using the built-in optical sensor, the headphones recognize whether they are inserted into the ears or not, and therefore can stop or continue playing music themselves, based on the data received from the sensor. The operation of the automatic power off function is based on the same principle. In addition, through a mobile application you can connect a voice assistant, as well as … “call” on the headphones! What almost all owners of wireless headphones and any small portable devices that constantly get lost in the house dream of, the JBL LIVE 300TWS is fully implemented! Of course, you won’t be able to make a call in its classical sense, but when you click on the corresponding button of the mobile application, the headphones will beep very loudly. And separately, you can call both the right and left earphones.
⇡ #Work impressions
Having understood how to control the headphones through the mobile application, you can start listening to music. The JBL LIVE 300TWS did not present any surprises here. When playing rock, jazz and popular music, the sound picture is the most vivid and dynamic. The JBL LIVE 300TWS speakers also sound pretty instrumental. No noise or frequency mixing is observed. But there is also no special coloring of the sound – it is clear that this model is not intended for music lovers. After listening to nearly five dozen musical compositions of various genres at home and getting a first idea of the possibilities of the JBL LIVE 300TWS, we went outside.
Without the Ambient Aware and TalkThru features connected, the headphones provide excellent sound insulation. All sounds around are quite muffled. If you turn on the Ambient Aware function, which is designed to mix especially loud external sounds into the main channel, a slight hiss appears in the headphone speakers. When playing music, this hissing is almost inaudible, and in urban conditions it is unlikely to affect the perception of the musical composition, but in silence … If you use headphones at home, it is better to turn off Ambient Aware.
TalkThru technology makes even more noise, but it’s not so important anymore, since all the conversations, street noise and any other sounds of the city become completely clearly audible against the background of muffled background music, the playback of which does not stop. This function is very convenient to use not only when someone asks you a question, but also when, for example, you cross the road and want to clearly hear everything around or are in the airport lounge and listen to announcements. In general, both technologies cope with their purpose almost perfectly. It is a pity that it is impossible to simultaneously control both of them with the help of the control panel on the headphones themselves.
When using the novelty as a smartphone headset, no difficulties arose. The interlocutor hears you as well as you him. The only thing is that with this mode of operation in a mobile application, it is desirable to disable the automatic headphone off function.
The maximum volume level of the JBL LIVE 300TWS is high; even in the subway I do not want to set it to more than 70% of the maximum. When listening at home, in most cases, 50% is not required. As for the battery life, the values declared by the manufacturer of 6 hours plus 14 hours from the case are valid when setting the volume to about half of the maximum. Headphones charge very quickly. It will take about two hours to fully charge, but literally in ten to fifteen minutes you can charge the headphones for battery life for an hour.
Despite the fact that the JBL LIVE 300TWS model is not intended for sports, these headphones are incomparably better in ears than many others. The thing, of course, is the thought-out geometry of the case and special silicone inserts clinging to the ear. If you choose the right sizes of silicone elements, you will not only not feel the discomfort of prolonged wearing, but you will not lose your headphones while running.
It is very difficult to radically improve the sound quality of modern Bluetooth headphones, so JBL chose the right path to improve their new models. In addition to the tradition of bright design, JBL headphones have acquired very useful features. The strengths of the JBL LIVE 300TWS include:
- catchy attractive design with a choice of colors;
- very high quality workmanship and materials;
- maximum wearing comfort and the possibility of individual selection of size;
- high level of sound insulation;
- the ability to quickly switch to the audibility of the interlocutor and external sounds (TalkThru technology);
- audibility mode for loud street sounds (Ambient Aware technology);
- high sound quality;
- the ability to work as a headset;
- work with voice assistants;
- fast recharging;
- mobile application for management and configuration.
Of the shortcomings, one can note only the rather large sizes of the cases and the lack of the ability to reconfigure the controls in the application. The price of the JBL LIVE 300TWS is rather big – eight thousand rubles, but these unusual headphones are definitely worth their money.
If you notice an error, select it with the mouse and press CTRL + ENTER.