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The JBL Live 500BT Wireless Headphones are the perfect solution for those looking to cut the cord and enjoy their favorite music without being tied down. With more than 30 hours of battery life, these wireless headphones are ready for anything. And with the Google Assistant built right in, it’s never been easier to control your day and access all the information you need while on the go.
These Bluetooth headphones have a harmonious sound that makes them great for any occasion. The sound quality is also impressive, with deep bass tones and clear highs. However, they do not have active noise canceling (ANC) feature, which means they won’t be ideal for commuting and traveling around town.
The JBL Live 500BT are stylish headphones that offer a premium feel with their large, leather-lined cups and thick padding. They look good on the head, thanks to their mesh coating on the band for extra comfort when wearing them during long periods. The lightweight plastic design makes it easy to take these anywhere you go. Moreover, the metal folding joints don’t give off the cheap feeling of plastic pieces. The cups themselves also seem well-made from their denseness, well enough to withstand accidental drops without breaking.
They stay tight on your head while you engage in various activities, including running. While they will wobble during intense sports and listening sessions, their wireless design means no need for cables or wires getting caught up with anything. However, these headphones are very tight-fitting and can be uncomfortable for people with larger heads. The cups may also touch your ears or even push them against the driver in some cases.
The JBL Live 500BT headphones have powerful output and are designed for those who want to listen to bass-heavy tracks. However, they cannot meet ambitious demands on sound quality as the resolution appears limited and only the SBC codec is supported.(1)
They have excellent bass quality with a 10Hz low-frequency extension. You might feel its 4dB overemphasis in its bass with excess thump and rumble, but it may benefit the bass-heavy fans. The mid-bass also has some overtones, which could make it seem just marginally too boomy for listeners who like to hear higher frequencies in their mix as well – but again, that’s not necessarily bad depending on your tastes.
The treble performance of the headphones is decent. However, the response is slightly uneven and may sound overly bright, especially on already peppy tracks. This could be because of the dip in 6kHz frequency, which will negatively affect detail and brightness for those high frequencies you want to hear more clearly. But not everyone hears things according to how they’re tuned, so your experience with these headphones might vary.
The free JBL Headphone app allows you to adjust the sound via EQ and save your settings, so they are always at hand. The pre-configured templates, such as “Bass”, “Vocals”, “Jazz” give a nice variety of options. When you might need them, firmware updates are available for refreshing your headphones with new features.(2)
The JBL Live 500BT headphones have sub-par isolation, which means they’re not the best option for your daily commute. They don’t come with active noise canceling and instead rely on their fit around your ears to isolate you from outside sound.
The JBL live 500BT offers various features, but one that stands out is the control scheme. The headphones are easy to control, from controlling the calls and music you listen to while cycling through their Ambient Aware mode and Talk-thru mode. They also come with a corresponding mini jack cable with a 1-button remote and integrated microphone.
The JBL live 500BT headphones support Bluetooth standard 4.2. The wireless range of the headphones can reach up to 10 meters, meaning you don’t have to worry about being tethered to one spot. They are not just powered by Bluetooth but also an auxiliary wire, so whether you want high-quality sound outside at work without having anything connected directly into your phone or are looking for something more portable. (3)
Switching on the headphones with the power slide button will automatically put them in pairing mode. The integrated central remote control handles both starts/stops functions and accepts and terminates phone calls. You can also cover your left cup with a palm or double-tap the middle multi-purpose button to access the voice assistant. They have separate volume control buttons to manage the volume levels. Additionally, if you want to access the previous or next song, press and hold the volume control buttons for 2 seconds.
There is an additional button on the right cup of the headphones to control the Ambient Aware mode and Talk-Thru mode. The Talk-Thru mode drops the volume level to make sure you clearly hear the person’s voice on the other side without removing your headphones. On the other side, Ambient Aware mode allows you to listen to what’s happening around you. You may completely turn off the modes using the dedicated button.
The JBL Live 500BT headphones have fantastic battery life. They lasted 33 hours on a single charge during our tests. This should be enough for even the busiest person with an active lifestyle to go 2-3 days without charging them. The good thing about these headphones is that it only takes two hours to charge them back up fully.
They automatically turn off after 10 minutes of inactivity. However, you may turn off this feature inside the JBL Headphones app. One downside of the headphones is that they turn off if you start charging them, meaning you won’t use them while charging. But here comes the excellent feature – charging the headphones only for 15 minutes will allow you to use them for 2 hours, which is pretty impressive.
If you’re looking for a pair of wireless headphones with excellent battery life and good sound quality, the JBL live 500BT might be right up your alley. The downside is that they don’t come with ANC (Active Noise Cancellation). So, if silence while commuting is important to you, it may not be the best option. Still, if you want good quality at an affordable price without all the bells and whistles, this might be what you’re looking for.
1. Bluetooth codecs 101: Everything you need to know from https://www.androidauthority.com/bluetooth-codecs-997074/
2. JBL Headphones App from https://www.jbl.com/app.html
3. Bluetooth 4.2 Core Specifications Finalized from https://www.anandtech.com/show/8770/bluetooth-42-core-specifications-finalized