The Jabra Elite 4 Active is a true wireless earbud option that brings active noise canceling (ANC) and durability at an affordable price. With a focus on essential features rather than frills, these earbuds aim to provide a solid performance for athletes and active individuals. In this review, we explore the design, comfort, features, battery life, sound quality, microphone performance, and alternatives of the Jabra Elite 4 Active to determine if it’s worth the investment.

Design and Comfort:
The Jabra Elite 4 Active features an all-plastic construction that is typical for its price range. While it may not feel as premium as higher-end models, it offers a durable build. The earbuds come with three sizes of silicone ear tips, providing a secure fit for most users. The ear tips insert deep into the ear canal, offering passive noise isolation. However, some users may experience discomfort or pain when using the onboard earbud controls, as they require a significant amount of force to press.

Features and Control:
The Elite 4 Active’s earbuds function as buttons for controlling music playback. However, the force required to press them can be uncomfortable. The earbuds lack features like in-ear detection, voice indicating pairing mode, and customizable controls. To access additional features and customization options, users can download the Sound+ app, which allows toggling of ANC or HearThrough modes, custom EQ creation, and battery indicator visibility. The earbuds support Bluetooth 5.2 with aptX and SBC codecs, primarily targeting Android users.

Battery Life:
The Jabra Elite 4 Active offers above-average battery life among true wireless earbuds in its price range. In continuous playback with ANC turned on at 75dB(SPL), the earbuds lasted 7 hours and 17 minutes. The charging case provides an additional three charges, totaling up to 28 hours of total playback. However, the earbuds lack wireless charging support.

Sound Quality:
The ANC performance of the Elite 4 Active is decent, providing noticeable attenuation of surrounding noise. However, it is not as effective as higher-end models like the Sony WF-1000XM4 or Bose QuietComfort Earbuds. The earbuds target noises between 100Hz and 4kHz, with less attenuation below 100Hz. With a tight seal created by the deep-inserting ear tips, passive noise isolation is also significant. The default sound profile of the earbuds follows a consumer curve, providing a balanced listening experience. Users can adjust the EQ preset or create custom equalization using the Sound+ app.

Microphone Performance:
The microphone quality of the Jabra Elite 4 Active is adequate for taking calls but does not provide studio-quality performance. The earbuds struggle to attenuate background noise, making it challenging for the other party to hear clearly in noisy environments. The sidetone function helps offset the muffled voice experienced with isolating earbuds.

Alternatives:
Alternative options to consider include the Beats Studio Buds Plus, which offer good sound, improved ANC, and compatibility with both Android and Apple devices. The Anker Soundcore Space A40 provides good ANC, a subdued frequency response, and app support at a lower price point. For music-oriented users, the Sony WF-C500 offers great sound quality, long battery life, and a slim charging case. The JLab Epic Air Sport ANC provides a secure fit, noise canceling, touch controls, and durability.

Conclusion:
The Jabra Elite 4 Active delivers solid performance where it matters most, including good isolation, decent ANC, and a pleasant frequency response. With durability and customization options, it stands out in its price range. Comfort issues may arise for some users, particularly with the onboard earbud controls. Additionally, some quality-of-life features like wireless charging and auto-pause are missing. However, if you value durability, sound quality, and noise isolation, the Jabra Elite 4 Active is a worthwhile investment considering its performance at this price point.

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