Jabra Elite 85h :: Stuff that works

by Volker Weber

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This is a surprise winner. Although I have a friend who likes his Jabra Elite 85h very much, it wasn't really on my agenda. When I asked Jabra about the yet to be released Evolve2 85h, they offered to send this headset to pass the time and to get acquainted with the headset. And suddenly it is my most used headset. I did a little bit of tweaking to make it sound just right for my music:

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With the push and hold of a button behind my left ear I (could) cycle between four "Moments": In Private has ANC switched off and I am relying on its excellent passive noise cancellation, Commute has ANC on, In Public has HearThrough enabled and finally there is a My Moment. Each Moment can have its own sound settings. You can have the headset switch between the first three Moments automatically, depending on the sound around you and the readings from the internal motion detector, but I am not using that smart feature.

If you short press the same button, you just cycle through the sequence of ANC On, ANC Off, and HearThrough. Once you learned that you press once or twice to get to the desired state. That is what I use all the time.

HearThrough is quite deceiving since it feels like there is nothing covering your ears. You still hear your music and at the same time you hear everything around you. It is very similar to the Apple AirPods Pro transparent mode. I call it deceiving because to everybody else you seem to be zoned out when in fact you have super hearing, even more so when you pause the music.

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Why is it that I am using the Elite so much? It's just the most modern smartphone software of all the headsets I have. There are a ton of setting which lets me tailor the Elite exactly to what I want it to do. From then on, it's only a few button presses. The mute button calls Siri, if the iPhone is the last device you paired, I quickly learned the tactile volume up and down buttons for skipping and repeating tracks. And last but not least, I never forget to turn it off, because you just have to rotate the earcup into its parking position. And should you ever forget to do that, it will switch off automatically.

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After eight hours, if you want that. That only makes sense when you have 36 hours of playback with ANC on, 41 hours with ANC off, and a year of standby because the headset goes into deep sleep after 72 hours. A full charge take 2.5 hours and 15 minute charge gives you five hours of playback.

What's missing? Only a microphone boom which the Evolve2 85 will get. But that looks like it will initially be priced above 500 €. The Elite 85h on the other hand punches above its weight. Listed at 250 € it sells below 200 €. Elite 85h is dust- and waterproof and Jabra backs that up with a two year warranty.

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Comments

Now I am tempted to return / sell my rather new Plantronics 8200 UC in favor of this one... :-)

Ragnar Schierholz, 2020-06-04

You probably should not. The 8200 is pretty good and comes with the BT600 which the Elite is missing. I also find the 8200 to be better at phone calls.

Volker Weber, 2020-06-04

Sehr spannend. Wie steht es denn mit der Gesprächsqualität?

René Fischer, 2020-06-04

So klingt das: https://vowe.net/images/jabraelite85hskypecall.m4a

Volker Weber, 2020-06-04

Skype nimmt immer ein Video auf, aus dem ich das Audiofile extrahiert habe. Ich finde das nicht besonders gut, aber es funktioniert definitiv. Mit einem Mikrofonarm geht es noch mal deutlich besser. Wie stark man sich selbst hört, kann man übrigens einstellen. Ich tendiere mittlerweile dazu, das eher klein einzustellen, weil es mir sonst zu sehr rauscht.

Volker Weber, 2020-06-04

Part of my logic was that in the office I have a Jabra device which links softphone, smartphone and landline into one headset. So, I have the Jabra Direct software on my work laptop and so far, I have hesitated to install the Plantronics Hub in parallel, fearing that the two may interfere. I maintain the 8200 via the Plantronics Hub on our private MacBook and over the iOS app. So far, it works pretty well, but I am not sure whether I'm missing out on something... Having the Jabra Software already, I figured it might be a good idea to unify. But may that is just a bit of STD (shiny things disease) syndrome :-).

Ragnar Schierholz, 2020-06-05

Danke Volker :)

René Fischer, 2020-06-05


The Evolve2 85 UC will also come with a dongle (Jabra Link 380 Bluetooth adapter) which improves. This makes it on par with 8200.

It also received the Microsoft certification for Teams regarding its microphones, called "premium microphone for open office"

see also:
https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/microsoft-teams-blog/introducing-new-teams-certified-devices/ba-p/1345703

Frank van Rijt, 2020-06-05

Dear Volker,

many thanks for your useful review.
I am looking for a comfortable headset for a noisy office. People may speak, have phone calls in the same room and I have to concentrate. Would you recommend to get Elite 85? Or should I look into something else? I am testing Jabra 75 Evolve 2 today but to be honest it is not completely perfect. New AirPods Pro are not perfect as well...

Thanks,
Natalia

Natalia Tronko, 2020-06-23

Natalia, you could look into these, or the Bose NC700.

Volker Weber, 2020-06-23

Vielen Dank!!! Liebe Grüße aus München!

Natalia Tronko, 2020-06-23

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.

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