FutureFive New Zealand - Consumer technology news & reviews from the future
Story image
Hands-on review: The Jabra Elite 45h headphones
Thu, 24th Sep 2020
FYI, this story is more than a year old

The Jabra Elite 45h is designed to work with your mobile devices. Jabra advises downloading their Sound+ App and so I did. After that, I took myself off to a quiet room for a bit of calibrating and then it was time to play with the equaliser. I've opted for the bass preset, and once I'm used to the sound, I'll have a play around to get the settings to my liking.

During my time of reviewing headsets, I've come to learn that a scientific and inclusive approach is the best, so I thought I'd share with you a selection of different sounds I've chosen to put products through their paces.

I have created a playlist that includes these songs among others: Stairway to Heaven, Led Zeppelin; All Along the Watchtower, Jimi Hendrix; Where Does My Heart Beat Now, Celine Dion; Black Rider, Bob Dylan; and Never Gonna be the Same, Camila Cabello.

Some emphasise vocals, while others have some ripping guitar riffs. Using the Jabra Elite, I noticed little nuances I hadn't previously noticed. For example, the use of echo in Stairway to Heavencompletely blindsided me. Then Camila Cabello's vocal range really comes through, from the raspy lows to the incredible highs. Celine's early hit remains one of my favourites, with its lovely mix of vocal and instrumentals. Dylan's raw voice has to be one of the most distinctive around, and it felt as I was in the room listening to him.

MySound adjusts music to your hearing. Just make sure you have the headphones on the correct ear if you don't want to have to repeat the setup. You'll also need a quiet room where you can't hear the telly as your darling continues with her recuperation.

2-microphone call technology: Built into the right headset this is one sensitive microphone, picking up the sound of my pen tapping on the desk, not to mention my heavy breathing as my fingers fumbled to hit the right numbers on the phone.

Direct Voice Assistant access:  Yes, it works, and you'll be pleased to know that Siri “enjoys spending quality time” with me. That means I'll be OK when they develop self-awareness.
The headphones are light-weight and extremely comfortable, with delightfully plush cushioning and speakers that swivel to adjust to your ears.

Phone calls: This headset makes long phone calls a breeze, with excellent sound quality and comfort. When I called my besties down in Steampunkville, an hour later my ears still felt fresh.

Even now, days later, after a session designed to drown out my beloved's favourite TV programme, my ears don't have that hot sore feeling I sometimes get from some headsets. The cushioning is amazingly soft and makes for a comfortable experience on the ears.

Jabra's website mentions one thing I almost overlooked. In these days of sardine-can-like workspaces not seen since the early industrial revolution, making phone calls can drive you crazy. To prove a point, I'm listening to Dylan's anthem, Murder Most Foul, which is easily drowning out “Ellen” on the television. While they don't come out and say “noise cancelling,” I can confirm they cut out the background noise nicely.

I've had to go back and rewrite most of this review when I suddenly realised I was writing music critiques and not explaining what makes these headphones so good. For the colour-conscious, the Jabra Elite 45h come in a variety of choices. My review set is a matt black and bronze, and beige, navy and gold options are also available.

For a headset coming in at under $200, Jabra has packed in an array of features that appeal to the budget-conscious that demand a quality sound experience, whether making that important business call or chilling out to your favourite sounds. I suspect that your experience may equal mine, and you'll end up keeping them on and never bothering to fold and store them in the handy storage bag.

They really are a comfortable and handy accessory that you won't want to part with. However, Jabra appears to have anticipated me, because they've sent me another model to review. Woohoo!