I recently had the opportunity to test out a new addition to Jabra’s headset range – The Jabra Sport Corded. Jabra claim that they are a high quality headset built to military specs’ with wind and rain resistant components that are still being able to offer a comfortable fit. So you can power on exercising while listening to music or being on the phone, all during a lovely tropical shower… But we’re not taking their word for it!
Unboxing the Jabra Sport Corded:
The headset comes in a nice black, zip-up fabric case with ‘Jabra’ embossed on the top. Unzipping the case reveals a pair of ‘wrap-around’ style earphones with a bright yellow fettuccini-like cord. Initial impressions are good; the ear piece feels of high quality construction with a somewhat perforated silicon pattern over the ‘ear-hugging’ part of the earphone. The interchangeable ear gels feel nice and soft, with three different contouring styles included. The microphone and function button are positioned about 15cm from the earpiece, and a volume control slide is positioned a further 30cm down. Jabra also included a 60cm extension cord and a detachable lapel clip.
Testing the Jabra Sport Corded:
For those of you who are not aware, I live in Brisbane, and last Sunday we had the annual 10km ‘Bridge to Brisbane’ fun run. So what better event could these be more suited to?
Sound Quality: Slipping on the headset, connecting it to my Android phone I queue up the music. With the volume set to around 70% the audio quality is good. It is at this point I should probably point out I usually use my noise isolating Sennheiser CX550’s canal earphones, which were a little over $200. The sound quality of the Jabra’s is obviously not as good, but with an RRP $69 they get a pass, especially since they include a microphone and function button. After playing around with my phone's equalizer the Jabra's were able to produce a reasonable amount of bass without bottoming out. Setting the volume higher than 75% resulted in distortion occurring.
Comfort: To be honest I have never been a huge fan of these wrap-around style earphones. I have always used canal, noise isolating earbuds. However I do concede that the Jabra’s stayed in place the whole time I was running. When I run with my Sennheiser’s I occasionally have to push them back into my ear which is a little annoying, so for running I would prefer these. Also the fact that the Jabra’s aren’t noise isolating is kind of a good thing for when you’re cycling or jogging on a road; it is nice to hear an approaching car! The three ear gels that Jabra include should be suitable for most people, however if you have small ears you might run into troubles… Also I thought that because these wrap around your whole ear wearing sunglasses might be annoying, but I was nt bothered too much.
Operation: The function button on the headset is simple; single press for ‘pause’ or ‘answer’ and a double press for ‘skip track’. This worked fine in MixZing (a free mp3 player available on the Android Market) however it didn’t seem to work that well with the default Android music player. A single press would place a call, a double press would call and then hang-up. This is most likely a software bug on my phone as my genuine HTC ones did a similar thing, but I couldn’t find an option anywhere in the default music player to start troubleshooting. So if you have this issue, I would just download MixZing Basic – its free and better than the default Android music player anyway… The quiet achiever of the Jabra Sport Corded is the wind resistant microphone. I called a friend while I was cycling at about 25 km/h and he claimed to hear me perfectly and wouldn’t have guessed that I was riding! As for rain resistance, the weather in Brisbane has been beautiful so I can’t comment, but if it’s as good as the mic’s wind resistance you’ll be fine.
The Jabra Sport Corded retails for $69 which in my opinion is a fair price. It incorporates a wrap-around design to keep them in place while you jog, with a good wind resistant microphone and handy function button to answer calls or skip through tracks. The cord feels very durable and Jabra claim the headset is also rain resistant. If you use your smartphone as an mp3 player while you exercise and are after reasonable audio quality with the ability to take calls, these are good value. If you are just wanting some good quality audio then I recommend you buy some noise isolating canal earphones.