Zit Seng's Blog

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JLAB Work Buds Review

All the headphones and earbuds you’ve seen out there? They all seem to look somewhat the same. Until now. JLAB’s Work Buds manages to bring something unique to the table, and I’m loving these earbuds that are made for work.

Let me cut to the chase. The JLAB Work Buds are true wireless earbuds. Its standout feature is this flexible boom microphone that you can attach to, get that, either earbud, bringing the microphone much closer to your mouth so it can more clearly pick up your voice. That the boom microphone can be detached is great, because who wants to walk around with this appendage sticking out when you’re just chilling.

Why didn’t anyone think of this earlier?

Not only is this boom microphone an optional attachment, it’s also very malleable, so it’s very easy to adjust into any position that suits you. In fact, that’s also exactly what you’d need to do in order to fit the boom microphone into the charging case.

Just look at that charging case. It’s not unlike most regular charging cases. Despite having a boom microphone, on extra space is required. This is because the malleable boom microphone simply wraps around and hugs the edge of the case.

My concern, is that if boom microphone needs to be curled and uncurled every time you put back or take it out, how many times of that bending cycle can it take. I haven’t had any problems whatsoever in my testing.

The position of the microphone allows the JLAB Work Buds to easily pick up my voice. It still does feature noise cancellation to attenuate background noise, so you’ll always sound great to the other party on your call.

As aforementioned, the boom microphone attaches to either earbud. You can thus use it in whichever way feels more comfortable to you. Changing sides is also a simple matter of unplugging from one side and plugging it into the other. It’ll take no more than 5 seconds.

The earbuds have touch-capacitive controls, and they allow you the usual controls for volume, music playback, call management, voice assistant, etc.

I have no complaints about the sound quality from the JLAB Work Buds. It has a decently powerful bass, though like how I felt with the JBuds Mini, they are a bit too boomy for my liking. Overall, the earbuds sound energetic and lively. You have the opportunity to tune the EQ.

The JLab App mobile app, available on both Android and iOS, allows you to customise features and update firmware on the earbuds. You can toggle between music and movie modes, and there’s a quick toggle for podcasts in the EQ.

While there isn’t active noise cancellation in the Work Buds, they do support audio transparency mode. JLAB calls this Be Aware, and this feature basically plays ambient sounds picked up by its microphones into your ears, so you can be aware of your surroundings.

The charging case has a removable cover that has a very satisfying magnetic closure. There is no wireless charging. The earbuds last for 10 hours on a single charge, or up to 50 hours with the charging case. Charging is via USB Type-C port.

I just want to point out that 10 hours of use from the earbuds is simply awesome. I used to think that 5 to 6 hours is good enough, since even long meetings won’t last that long. Unfortunately, sometimes you do end up with back to back calls and meetings, especially since the trend nowadays is increasingly to meet online rather than in-person. Your ears will tire out first before the earbuds run out of battery.

For work calls, I think my complaint, a significant one for me, is the lack of a mute control on the earbuds. You see, I like to walk around, possibly away from my computer, especially during long calls. I really prefer to control mute from the headset than on my computer.

The JLAB Work Buds support Bluetooth 5.3, and includes Bluetooth multipoint capability. Bluetooth multipoint is an important feature for me. This allows the Work Buds to connect to two devices at the same time, such as your laptop and your smartphone, enabling you to, for example, listen to music from your laptop and yet easily switch over to an incoming call on your smartphone.

The only codec supported by the JLAB Work Buds is SBC. While that is perfectly fine for must casual listening and work meetings, one might hope to get newer codecs that are becoming more commonplace these days.

The JLAB Work Buds are great earbuds to have for work. The boom microphone is a very cool feature that isn’t just useful, but also works well. The battery life is awesome. Beyond work, the Work Buds will also do music and others just as well. It’s important that the microphone is removable, so you don’t look weird when you’re just listening to music on your commute.

The retail box includes a USB charging cable, several sizes of silicon tips and cush fins. The latter are like wings which help lock the earbuds in your ears.

The JLAB Work Buds retails at $169. You can find it on JLAB’s online stores on Lazada and Shopee.

1 thought on “JLAB Work Buds Review

  1. Thanks for the awesome review. Have you tried the mic pick-up in noisy environment such as fans, cafe, street conditions? Is it any good in a non-quiet environment?

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