From my experience, nothing comes close to JBL sports headphones in terms of fit, build and sound for the price. So, I was curious to test out JBL’s first sports true wireless buds. Will they live up to the high standards that JBL has set for its athletic line-up? Let’s find out in this JBL Endurance Peak True Wireless Earphones Review.
IN the BOX
JBL always knocks it out of the ballpark in this department. Go rock climbing, skydiving or do somersaults. These babies aren’t falling out. JBL has designed a “TwistLock” technology; you insert the buds at a downward angle and then twist them into place. It’s actually much less complicated than it sounds, but it really works. With a super ergonomic fit, the Endurance Fit will seal perfectly in the contours of your ears. In fact, the ear-hooks may not even be necessary. But for the paranoid souls out there, it’s just extra assurance that the Endurance Peak will stay in place even after the sweatiest of runs. They’re comfortable too, and I wasn't bothered by the secure feel, even after long periods of use.
For those who are unfamiliar with true wireless technology, the earphones come with a case that acts as a charger. The charging case gives you 24 hours of extra charge. And you can use the earphones for 4 hours at a time before you have to put them back in the case for charging. In total, you’ll get 28 hours of usage. This is a hell of a lot longer than the majority of true wireless earphones out there, even some of the incredibly expensive ones.
Functions and Features
You can control a host of functions from the right earpiece with a couple of taps or swipes, depending on which function you want to activate. The right earpiece will allow you to play/pause, skip back and forth, adjust volume and answer/end calls. All the functions are surprisingly easy to navigate and I didn’t even need any practice to get the hang of it.
Connecting these buds to your phone is easy. When you take them out for the first time, the earbuds will enter pairing mode automatically. You’ll find them in your Bluetooth settings. And after you’ve paired them once, they will automatically connect every time you take them out of the charging case. When you’re done listening, all you have to do is take them out of your ears and push the ear-hooks back in place to switch them off.
Waterproofness and Usability
With an IPX7 waterproof rating, your buds will stay alive even with your head underwater for up to 30 minutes. You should note, however, that the Bluetooth feature will not work while swimming underwater. Don’t quote me, though. I’ve only tested the Endurance Dive model underwater, but my guess is that the Endurance Peak is the same. Once you dip head into the pool, the connection will be lost. So, these buds are really designed for floating around while sipping on a cocktail.
Call clarity is okay, but not crystal clear. I had no problem hearing the caller, but my buddy on the other line said that the volume was low, and I sounded a little muffled. So, if you’re calling your wife to tell her how many push ups you did, call clarity should be sufficient. But if you’re need to have an in-depth discussion about quantum physics, you might need to look for buds with a better microphone. Also note that when making calls, the sound only comes through the right earpiece.
There’s one thing that would have made the Endurance Peak a spectacular earphone. Bluetooth 5. But that technology would probably mean a more expensive headphone. The Endurance Peak is still in the Bluetooth 4.2 generation, which means that it’s not the clearest wireless transmission available. But unless you’re a stickler for high fidelity or you’ve compared these buds to a Bluetooth 5 pair, it’s unlikely that you’ll be disappointed with the sound quality.
Overall Impressions: Powerful bass with a versatile sound profile.
In true JBL fashions, the Endurance Peak delivers big and juicy lows. It will satisfy bass-heads without overwhelming more civilized folks. Pop has some serious punch, and the rich low end makes rock sound warm and full bodied.
The upper mids are favored here. So, if you like powerful vocals that sit forward in the mix, this will be a good balance for you. The lower mids are powered more from the bass frequencies. So, you’ll get a dynamic sound, rather than a flat midrange. Listening to folk music, acoustic guitars sounded quite clean for a wireless headphone, though don’t expect the same clarity as you would from a wired headphone in this price range. That being said, the sound is far from muddy, and for a sports headphone, I was more than satisfied.
Listening to strings in this range, you’ll get a nice fluid smoothness. And moving back to pop, percussion instruments have a crisp sparkle. That being said, the very highest registers weren’t too piercing, and in general, this is a headphone you can listen to for long periods of time without fatiguing your ears.
Considering how hard it is to find a pair of decent true wireless earphones for under $150, I think the Endurance Peak is a great deal. Secure fit, good sound, fantastic battery life, waterproof, and really easy to use. For you swimmers out there who were hoping for music while you backstroke, why don’t you check out the Endurance Dive model. It’s wireless (not truly wireless), and comes with an MP3 player for downloading songs, so you can listen while you swim. But if you’re just a beach bum or a heavy sweater longing to be liberated from cables, this is a great choice.
Think the Peak is right for you?