The Jabra SPORT is a mostly wireless Bluetooth stereo headset aimed at a more active listener who doesn’t have time to deal with securing wires. It also appeals to those who don’t want to listen to them thumping during activity.
I’ll be doing some comparisons later between these and the BlueBuds X Sports Bluetooth earbuds, so if you haven’t had a chance to catch that review, you might want to.
Jabra SPORT overview
Here’s what is in the box:
- Jabra SPORT headphones
- Three types of ear tips (one set on the earpieces, two others in a bag)
- MicroUSB charging wall outlet adapter
- Instructions which you will need
- Make and receive calls
- 4.5 hours talk time
- 3 hours music playback
- 96 hours standby time
- FM receiver
- Endomondo Sports Tracker integration
- Bluetooth 3.0
- AVRCP (control music from headset)
- Standard mic with noise filter
- Military-grade rain, shock, and dust protection
Jabra SPORT in action
The Jabra SPORT earpiece is worn over the ears with the cable that connects the left and right ear pieces running behind your head (and ending up on your neck if you don’t have enough hair).
This particular device was the first Jabra in which I’ve ever had to switch from the default ear piece, but switching them out is pretty easy, and they feel just about indestructible.
When powering them up for the first time, you are walked through the setup via headset audio, guiding you to correctly connect your phone to the headset. It’s a pretty simple task of turning on Bluetooth, searching for a device, and connecting to the device named the Jabra SPORT. It’s the easiest possible Bluetooth pairing there is.
In my particular case, although seemingly correctly paired, audio would not play for some reason. I could hear the beeps of me changing the ringtone through the set, but music was playing through the speaker on my phone. I tapped a couple of things on my phone, and it immediately started playing out the headset. I’m assuming this was just my phone being a punk, but thought I would mention it here.
The nicest thing I noticed about these is that, when jogging or running about, there’s no booming noise. Unfortunately, there is no way to secure the cord that connects the left to the right behind your head, so the back of your neck is going to be being tapped unless you either rig something up or put it in some odd position. It’s not annoying for me, but I also don’t jog that fast.
When the headset is properly seated, most of the audio from the world goes away, but you still have a pretty solid sense of the louder things going on around you. It’s possible to override that by cranking up the volume, but you should reserve that for the gym and not the outdoors.
Jabra SPORT calling
I didn’t really like the in-call audio on it. This could have been my connection – I can hear things perfectly, but it didn’t sound quite right on the recording I left and listened to. However, I was in a very loud area each time I’ve did the call test, and I didn’t have any problem understanding.
Using the Jabra SPORT as a radio
If you’re tired of listening to your music, or you just don’t want to drain your phone any more, you can listen to FM radio by pressing a button. You change channels using the volume controls and holding them for a second to search either up or down on the radio dial.
The reception was great – most likely, it’s using that wire as an antenna.
Endomondo app integration
I did not test this, as I have quite honestly been a bit of a slacker in my exercise goals since the birth of my daughter, but the Jabra SPORT pairs with the app to provide an audio summary when you press a button.
Jabra SPORT versus BlueBuds X
- Audio: tie (my ears can’t tell the difference)
- Fit (inner ear): BlueBuds X
- Accessories: BlueBuds X (carrying case)
- Battery: BlueBuds X (eight hours vs three)
- Waterproof: tie
- Bluetooth distance: slight edge to BlueBuds X
- Radio: Jabra SPORT (there is none on BB)
- Price: Jabra SPORT at 1/3rd the cost
- Bluetooth error correction: BlueBuds X
- Microphone: tie (both sounded OK to me)
- Style: BlueBuds X
- Controls: Jabra SPORT
- Ability to strap down: BlueBuds X (includes clip)
- Wearing options: BlueBuds X (over, under)
- Sleekness: Sort of a tie – Sizewise BlueBuds X, cablewise I sort of like the Jabra SPORT
The Jabra SPORT is about a third of the price of the BlueBuds X. I think it’s also probably as much as most techno athletes need, but it probably does not scale up to the demands that the BlueBuds can.
The addition of the FM radio allows me to get my blood pumping listening to talk radio I disagree with, or just catch up on the news while I’m basically in brain-off mode, chugging along attempting to lose the baby weight.
The Jabra SPORT Bluetooth Stereo Headset is available from Amazon for $62.61.