Laptop Mag Verdict
The $199 Jabra Elite 7 Pro isn’t the brand’s best offering, but it’s a great value at a reasonable price.
Excellent sound for music and calls
Loaded with customizable features
Sleek, sturdy, and smaller design
Long battery life
No multipoint technology or touch controls
Poor ear fit test
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Continuing a holiday rollout, Jabra recently launched their newest line of wireless earbuds, headlined by the Elite 7 Pro. These noise-cancelling buds bring several improvements to the table, from new proprietary technologies to a revamped design that is 16 percent smaller than its predecessors. Staples like the Jabra Sound+ app also remain intact for extended functionality.
- Our expert picks for the best wireless earbuds, per budget and style
- Check out our Apple AirPods Pro review
- …and our Sony WF-1000XM4 review
Purchasing the Elite 7 Pro gets you adjustable active noise cancellation, Bluetooth 5.2, customizable sound, intelligible mics, wireless charging, and some of the best battery life in the true wireless space. That’s quite the spec sheet for sub-$200 wireless earbuds.
At the same time, these buds aren’t without their flaws, lacking specific features and the ANC performance of top-tier models. Are these enough to keep the Elite 7 Pro from making our best wireless earbuds list? Let’s find out.
- Jabra Elite 7 Pro at Best Buy for $199 (Black)
- Jabra Elite 7 Pro at Amazon for $199 (Titanium Black)
- Jabra Elite 7 Pro at Amazon for $199 (Beige)
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: Availability and price
The $199 Jabra Elite 7 Pro is available at major online retailers, including Amazon and Best Buy, or directly from Jabra. It comes in three colors: Black, Gold Beige, and Titanium Black. Bundled with the purchase are a wireless charging case, USB-C charging cable, three sets of different-sized ear tips, and a quick start guide.
Price-wise, it has a higher MSRP than popular mid-tier rivals like the Beats Studio Buds ($149) and Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 ($149), but is also less expensive than premium offerings like the AirPods Pro ($249) and Sony WF-1000XM4 ($279). If you’re in the market for something much cheaper that offers similar performance, we suggest checking out the JBL Live Pro Plus ($129) or the self-cleaning LG Tone Free FP8 ($129).
Be sure to bookmark out Best Black Friday headphone deals page for the latest sales.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: Design and comfort
These buds look no different than their budget counterpart, the Elite 3. The triangular design with sturdy plastic casing and multifunctional button on the front is the same. What is different in this version is the two-tone colorways that give off a more distinctive and luxe appearance. While the Elite 7 Pro comes with a higher IP rating (IP57) for protection against dust and water exposure, I’m disappointed that the exterior scuffs up easily, much like my unit did after falling about 5 feet onto a marble surface.
The charging case is different than some of the others in Jabra’s true wireless collection, including the Elite 3. It’s shorter in size (1.58 x 0.99 x 2.74 inches), weighs the same as the AirPods Pro’s charging case (1.6 ounces), and takes on a flat oval shape. The logo is embossed on the front and the USB-C charging port is placed on the front, which I found awkward and cumbersome when charging at my work desk.
Wearing the buds for several hours will feel comfortable. They rest pleasantly on the concha. I was fine using them for several hours throughout the day, sometimes going 4 hours straight before noticing minor soreness.
Fit is just as reliable as it is on the Elite 7 Active. Jabra’s EarGel tips feel gentle on the skin and form a tight seal around the canal to keep the buds stabilized. And like its sporty sibling, the Elite 7 Pro supports the MyFit ear test to analyze your ears and determine the best tips for optimal fit. Unfortunately, the program delivers inaccurate readings and needs lots of work. How it assessed a “good fit” when I only had one bud in my ear is just mindboggling.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: Controls and digital assistant
Touch controls aren’t in Jabra’s vocabulary. Hence why we’re given another set of wireless earbuds with physical buttons to manage all functionality. This includes playback, call management, volume, digital assistance, and listening mode activation. Jabra does a fantastic job with the control scheme, letting users assign most functions to different input methods (single/multi-press and press-and-hold) via the MyControls setting in the Jabra Sound+ app. There’s also in-ear detection to pause music when removing the buds from your ears and resuming playback when placed back on.
Everything works well, especially the MF buttons that produce nice tactility and reassure users of commands being executed with every press. Of course, this type of control scheme hinders comfort, as every time you press the button, it digs the bud deeper into the canal, something that becomes irritating after a while.
Alexa is built into the buds, so you can activate Amazon’s AI bot using the wake-word function (“Alexa”). Bixby, Google Assistant, and Siri are also compatible with the Elite 7 Pro, though they must each be enabled manually. All four digital assistants operate smoothly with Jabra’s mic array picking up vocals incredibly well to register long-winded inquiries.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: Audio quality
Sound on the Elite 7 Pro is like most current Jabra releases – dynamic and tailored to your liking. The 6mm drivers are half the size of what’s found in the Elite 85t, but they are still effective for producing solid frequency range with bass at the forefront.
The sound signature is flat right out of the box and set on the Neutral preset. There are five other presets available in the app – Bass Boost, Energize, Smooth, Speech, and Smooth – each one designed for specific content. You’re also given a custom EQ to create a sound profile by adjusting the frequency levels. Another cool feature is MySound, which personalizes the EQ according to your specific hearing profile. All these options are serviceable, but MySound is the most suitable for optimal sound. Not only did my profile deliver well-rounded audio and emphasize mids, but the other EQs also adapted to its results.
Pulling up A Tribe Called Quest’s “Oh My God,” I immediately noticed how much punchier the jazzy bassline and snares sounded with MySound enabled. The boost in clarity was even more impressive, giving Q-Tip’s mellow vocals and the horns prominence over the funky production.
The circuitous guitar riff on Nirvana’s “Come as You Are” was reproduced well and complemented Kurt Cobain’s eerie vocals. Jazz classics like Miles Davis’ “All of You” showcased the buds’ frequency capabilities. I enjoyed a beautiful blend of lows, mids, and highs, the latter standing out, thanks to consistent hi-hat and vibrant horn play. Other wireless earbuds like the Galaxy Buds 2 and WH-1000XM4 have a stronger sonic presence, but the Elite 7 Pro holds up well against the competition.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: Active noise cancellation
You must go through the Personalize ANC process to use noise cancellation. This requires using the customizable slider in the companion app to personalize how much surrounding audio you want to hear. Once adjusted, five intensity levels are selectable to accommodate noise reduction preference. It sounds intricate on paper, but the results aren’t that good.
For the positives, Jabra’s ANC technology does a noteworthy job of blocking out rumbling noises like from a generator or washing machine. It also minimizes high frequencies better than many other models; bird chirps and baby cries weren’t distracting. Mid-range frequencies are where the feature struggled most. To hear my wife and mom-in-law conversing in low tones, while music was playing on the buds at a reasonably high volume, told me all I needed to know. Dog barking and televisions caught my attention loud and clear as well.
HearThrough comes in handy for increasing your awareness of surroundings and pipes in a good amount of noise that is identifiable in moderately loud environments. Taking my baby boy out for walks allowed me to hear traffic (e.g., cars, joggers) and keep tabs on little man whenever he wanted a new toy. The mode was most useful indoors to communicate with my family members without having to take off the buds.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: App and special features
To get the most out of these buds, you’ll need to download the Jabra Sound+ app, which is loaded with features to enhance sound and useability. I’ve already touched on several of these, including ANC/HearThrough, EQ with presets, MyControls, MyFit, MySound, and Voice Assistant. Let’s break down the rest.
Open the app and you’re immediately greeted with an image of the product and battery level indicators for both buds and the charging case. Scroll down and there are several listening settings, including one that has yet to be mentioned: Soundscapes. It has 12 profiles to mask ambient noise around you with a selection of different sounds. Many of the profiles sound true to their settings, specifically Cavern and Waterfall, and offer some mental relief, even if for half of a minute. I say that because the effects don’t run on a continuous loop, turning off after about 30 seconds, which was never an issue on the Elite Active 75t.
Next up is Call Experience, a setting hidden on the back end to adjust how loudly you hear your voice during phone or video calls. It can also add more treble or bass to callers on the opposite end. Below that is the Headset Configuration setting to assign Sleep Mode, prompts (e.g., voice, tone), and in-ear detection for playback and calls.
Other notables include firmware updates and the Find My Jabra mode to locate misplaced buds. There is a Video Conference feature that allows you to use the app as a remote control for a Jabra video conferencing device, but it is unknown whether this works with the brand’s wireless earbuds.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: Battery life and charging case
Battery life on the Elite 7 Pro is rated at 9 hours with ANC playtime, which is more than the Sony WH-1000XM4 (8 hours) and several hours more than the industry-average time set by the AirPods and AirPods Pro: 4.5 to 5 hours. No complaints here, as I was able to use the buds moderately (1.5 hours daily) for an entire workweek before recharging. Be mindful that high volume, streaming, and other special features will decrease playtimes by about 1 or 2 hours. Turning off ANC extends listening time to 11 hours.
The charging case holds between 35 to 42 hours, depending on how you use the buds. That equates to about 4 to 5 extra charges. Again, no complaints. Quick charging speeds things up by generating 1.2 hours of playtime on a 5-minute charge. The case can also be wirelessly charged by placing it on top of a Qi-enabled charging pad.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: Call quality and connectivity
As a primetime player in voice communications, it’s almost guaranteed that you’re going to get trustworthy call quality from any Jabra product. The Elite 7 Pro delivers loud and clean sound, even when there’s a lot of background noise. My wife was impressed by how clear I sounded on walks, despite landscaping tools and whisking cars entering our conversation every few seconds. The advanced Voice Pick Up (VPU) sensor and Jabra MultiSensor Voice technology deserve all the credit. My only complaint is that callers on the opposite end sounded extremely low and raising volume to the max didn’t help.
The Elite 7 Pro runs on Bluetooth 5.2 and provides some of the best connectivity in the category. For starters, pairing is instant, whether it’s setting up the buds for the first time on an iOS/Android device or auto-connecting to your last known device. The range is much wider than what Jabra advertises, going past the 33-foot mark and achieving a peak of 60 feet before dropout occurs. It’s also cool that you can connect the buds to eight different devices, granted there is no multipoint technology to pair them to your smartphone and laptop/desktop/tablet at the same time.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro review: Verdict
For $199, the Elite 7 Pro is a great investment for those who value customizable sound and battery life, as well as brand enthusiasts wanting to upgrade to something new. Audio is satisfying on all fronts, and the different ways you can personalize it is something not many competitors offer at this price point. The increase in playtime and wireless performance is also gratifying.
If you’re looking for first-class ANC or specific modern features like touch controls, look elsewhere. Otherwise, give the Elite 7 Pro serious consideration as your next pair of wireless earbuds.