Jabra’s new flagship wireless headphone is here! It is packed with the company’s latest and greatest technologies – both in terms of sound quality and also microphone, alongside with other signature Jabra features.
So, what’s the Evolve2 85 all about? And is it meant for you? Well… that’s a tough question to answer.
Okay so let’s take a step back and look at the Jabra Evolve2 85 first. Its build quality is superb. It’s fairly flexible, has plenty of padding – especially the headband – and very smooth rails to adjust the size of the headphone too.
The earcups have thick foam padding, wrapped in leatherette for better noise isolation. They also rotate and fold in, so you can pack it in the included hardshell case.
Now, speaking of the included hardshell case, Jabra also included a few other accessories – like a headphone jack if you want to use it in wired mode, airplane jack so you can hook this up to your seat’s entertainment system, a USB-A to USB-C cable for charging, and also a proprietary dongle if you don’t want to use Bluetooth. More on these later.
So, the Jabra Evolve2 85. I want to talk about sound quality first. This headphone sounds amazingly good, honestly. My big band jazz sounds exceptionally well. All the instruments sound amazing, and honestly – I love how it sounds.
And there’s also TNC – which Jabra says it’s a combination of both active and passive noise cancellation technologies and to which I say – hot dang this is just too good to the point where I can hear my own heartbeat. Granted, I tried this in a fairly noisy environment and I didn’t hear much of anything beyond what I’m playing on my phone. It’s just insane!
But unfortunately, I’m not much of a fan of ANC technology, so I turned it off most of the time. The silence caused me to feel claustrophobic.
The Jabra Evolve2 85 also has the ability to enable Hear Through mode, which works fine. I honestly feel like I prefer to use Hear Through mode sometimes because even with just “ANC turned off” feels a little claustrophobic when I’m in my own room.
Now, the microphone – which is beautifully hidden inside the headphone, can be pulled down in a second and it sounds amazing for a headphone that is specialized for calls.
Jabra claims that they’ve built in 10 microphones (yes, 10) and powered by an advanced chipset. I mean, it clearly shows since there is no background noise at all. To hear the sample recording, watch our video at the top of this review.
This is a headphone that has a bunch of features built-in. It has a proximity sensor for wear detection so it will automatically play or pause music – which can also be disabled in the Jabra+ app on Android or iOS or the Jabra Direct app on Windows or macOS.
And speaking of the apps, both of them can customize the features available on the Jabra Evolve2 85 too.
But who’s this headphone for?
But at the end of the day, who is this headphone for? The Jabra Evolve2 85 aims to be the one headphone for both work and entertainment. And yes, Jabra, you achieved both things excellently on the Evolve2 85 – which I tip my imaginary hat to. It sounds great, has lots of features, and the call quality is good as well.
It seems like a very niche product. Let me go through why. Firstly, this headphone – you can’t buy it officially from Jabra through conventional means. You’ll have to contact Jabra’s sales team for that, making this a B2B product only.
And within Jabra’s website, you can select what accessories to be bundled with. The aforementioned dongle? It can be in USB-C or USB-A header. Also, do you want the Evolve2 85’s right earcup button to be UC platforms or for Microsoft Teams specifically?
And lastly – do you want a charging stand or not? Oh, I forgot to mention about this accessory. The left earcup of the Evolve2 85 can be magnetically snapped onto this charging stand and it charges through these two pins. I mean, it’s an alternative from using the USB-C port for charging. This means I don’t have to worry about the battery life of the Evolve2 85 at all – which also lasts way too long.
For my use case – I can listen to music and then hop into meetings and calls without taking the headphone off. That’s just fantastic.
But for companies, I don’t know – it’s just too expensive for call centers because each of the Evolve2 85 costs about RM2.5k as far as I can find. So, perhaps the perfect market for the management level in companies like IBM.
It’s a big MNC, needs to go through a lot of meetings and has a great work from home policy, and can order larger amounts of the Jabra Evolve2 85 for its management-level employees.
It does all the things it promises extremely well, but it’s a headphone that we can’t just go out and buy through conventional means.