Jabra’s earbuds might fly under the radar compared to Bose’s ‘buds and Apple’s AirPods, but the company makes the best Bluetooth earbuds around. We loved the Elite 59 T, we raved about the Elite 68 T and Elite Active 68 T, and now Jabra has announced the Elite 77 T. Those earlier earbuds were great, but these? These might be perfect.
Jabra has at long last delivered active noise cancellation and a wireless charging case to rival the AirPods Pro — and the $US230 ($319) Elite 77 T undercuts the $399 AirPods Pro by around $80. On paper, these earbuds sound seriously impressive.
Last year’s Elite 68 T offered passive noise cancellation that I thought did a solid job at drowning out exterior sound. The Elite 77 T aims to improve on that performance quite a bit. The Elite 77 T sport 12mm drivers, up from the 68 T’s 6mm ones, meaning that what Jabra calls “Advanced ANC” on its newest earbuds should be, well, advanced. There are three mics on each earbud: two on the outside and one on the interior. Two are for improved call performance, and the extra is for the ANC. The earbuds listen for ambient noise and adjust the noise cancellation dynamically.
Battery life is also better than the AirPods Pro by a hair — the Elite 77 T should last 5.5 hours, but when stored the wireless charging case (which itself charges over USB-C) between wearings, last 25 hours with ANC constantly enabled and 31 hours without.
One of the best parts about Jabra earbuds is how much you can do with the Jabra Sound+ app, which is one of the most robust apps for headphones around. With the Elite 77 T, the app enables you to use a slider tool to move from HearThrough mode (with ambient audio augmented) all the way to full ANC. (You can also press the earbud to toggle HearThrough on, ANC on, and ANC off.)
The Elite 77 T look a little bit different from their predecessors, though they still offer a semi-open design to prevent ear pressure. They also offer a more oval ear gel for an even better fit. The one possible downside is that the Elite 77 T protrude 2mm higher than the 68 T, which means they’ll extend out of the ear further than the Elite 68 T do. That could be a bummer, because the Elite 68 T fit perfectly. The 77 T’s case is also a smidge larger than the 68 T’s.
But if you bought the Elite 68 T last year or Elite Active 68 T earlier this year, don’t be frustrated: Jabra is rolling out a software update that will bring active noise cancellation to those earbuds, too. Due to driver size, the 68 T’s ANC won’t be as advanced as the Elite 77 T’s noise cancellation, but it’s something — and it’s free for existing users. If you buy a pair of 68 T earbuds after October, the ANC feature will be automatically enabled at no extra charge.
The Elite 77 T will be available to preorder in October and go on sale in November. The 68 T’s ANC software upgrade will roll out next month. We plan to put the new 77 T earbuds to the test to see if the advanced ANC is worth the $70+ premium over the base 68 T ‘buds and their software-based ANC, so stay tuned for a full review.