JBL made its name on great sound, but novel design concepts like the touchscreen case for its new Tour Pro 2 earbuds have begun to steal the show. The buds have much more to offer, of course, including a barrel full of great features. But their high price includes a premium for the extra screen.
The Tour Pro 2’s futuristic case is unquestionably cool and provides a tangible way to control and monitor all sorts of functions. You can do even more with the free mobile app, though, and the buds’ performance chops fall short in a few areas when compared to some of my favorites at this price, like Apple’s indomitable AirPods Pro (gen 2) and Samsung’s Galaxy Buds 2 Pro.
This is still a solid pair of earbuds for the money, offering excellent battery life, good sound, and enough features to stay competitive against anything in their class. But the question becomes: how much is a touchscreen case worth to you?
Here's What We Like
- Clear, accessible sound
- Excellent battery life
- An absolute glut of features
- Futuristic touchscreen case
And What We Don't
- No dedicated volume control
- Tinny transparency mode
- So-so call quality
- Case begs a premium
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The Tour Pro 2 are especially easy to pair for non-Apple users. Their sprawling feature list includes both Google Fast Pair and Microsoft Swift Pair for one-touch pairing with compatible Android and Windows devices.
It’s not a huge chore to manually connect to an iPhone, but there is a bit of rigamarole for all users in that you’ve got to pull the buds out and remove the stickers on their magnets, then either plug the case in or hold the button on the bottom. You’ll also want to download the JBL Headphones app for iPhone/iPad or Android, which provides access to a deep library of settings and features.
Before you do any of that, you’ll be tempted to start messing around with the case’s front screen—it’s inevitable that you’ll fiddle with it, and that’s half the fun. But everything in good time.
There’s so much here that you’ll want to go through the app’s setup instructions, which help you ensure a proper fit, customize ANC to your ears and environment, and set up a voice assistant if you care to. You also may want to take a tour through the Product Tips window to keep from getting overwhelmed with all that’s here.
Comfy Design, Control Compromises
- Earbuds weight:.22oz (6.1g) per bud
- Earbuds dust/water resistance: IPX5
- Charging case weight: 2.54oz (72g)
- Case touchscreen: 1.45in (36.8mm) display
You can no longer call the stem design an AirPods clone in 2023. It’s just the way of many earbuds, a tried and true design archetype. JBL does well with its version, apart from the fact that the earbuds are scrunched pretty tightly together at the top of the case. Once they’re free, the earbuds look snazzy and feel great in your ears.
The little metallic touches along each bud’s exterior offer some style points, while the housings are ergonomically shaped and light enough to make it easy to wear them for hours.
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There are separate touch controls for the left and right buds, and I found the configuration a little confusing at first. For example, most earbuds use a hold control to activate ambient audio modes like active noise canceling and transparency, but the Tour Pro 2 utilize a left-bud tap by default. I got used to it over time, and you can reprogram a few of the functions in the app.
What you can’t do is control volume without swapping out another major feature. Dedicated volume control is something I expect on all buds at this price (even Apple’s AirPods Pro finally joined that party). As it stands, you’ve got to trade either ANC or playback controls for volume commands, neither of which is convenient.
You can also control any of these functions on the case’s touchscreen, which is faster than scrolling through the app, but I’d still prefer comprehensive controls on the buds themselves. Otherwise, the controls are decent, if not as precise or accurate as the AirPods Pro.
All the Features
We’ll get into the case in a moment, I promise, but first, it’s worth discussing just how many features are available inside the app. There’s pretty much everything you can think of here; so many that it can be overwhelming if you’re new to the earbuds game.
You’ve got tons of sound customization options, from active noise canceling to sound performance. The latter includes multiple EQ presets, the ability to build out your own EQ settings, and even personalize the sound with a somewhat arduous 18-point test (I didn’t notice a huge change).
The noise canceling level can be adjusted manually or set to adaptive mode to react to your environment (though this will suck down more battery life), and you can similarly adjust the transparency mode level. If you’re hard of hearing, there’s even a booster mode to increase the sound around you, or a balance feature to adjust the stereo image.
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You can optimize the buds for video lag or virtualize stereo sound for a 3D effect for music or movies. I’m not usually a big fan of 3D virtualization, and that remains the case here, but hey, it’s there if you need it. You can also set a max volume limiter to keep yourself from rocking out too hard.
And those are just the sound modes. The buds have onboard sensors for auto pause (which you can turn on or off) and the ability to use one earbud at a time. There’s an earbuds finder, Bluetooth multipoint audio to easily swap between a computer and a phone, and more.
Honestly, it feels like JBL did a survey to find out every feature in existence and then found a way to cram them all in. The only thing I can think of that’s not available is an environmental tracker that adjusts the sound to your physical location, as Sony offers. But hey, you can’t win ’em all.
A Very Fancy Case
Of course, the big ticket item is the touchscreen case. Apart from cutting-edge looks, it lets you control everything from volume and playback to noise canceling and even EQ presets directly. It also charges wirelessly and gives you a very handy readout of battery life for both the buds and case by default. It can even let you answer calls or get a quick (but extremely fleeting) preview of messages.
Not all of that is useful on the regular, but thankfully, you can control what’s on tap (literally) via the app, which means less scrolling through screens you won’t use. The case also offers a few other functions, like a “flashlight” in the form of a white screen and the ability to load your own images (spot the Review Geek logo in the review’s first photo).
You’re already going to have your phone for some of those functions, and an app for the rest, so I wouldn’t call any of these features essential. They do come in handy on occasion—if you can remember to use them.
Solid ANC, Middling Transparency Mode
The JBL Tour Pro 2 do a respectable job of noise canceling, even if they don’t hold up to the top of the class. To be fair, noise cancelers like the AirPods Pro (gen 2) and Bose QuietComfort Earbuds 2 are astonishingly good these days, putting nearly all other headphones to shame. The Tour Pro 2 bring things back down to earth, but if you don’t need full-frequency noise stomping across the board, they should suffice.
The buds do a particularly good job at the low end of the register with sounds like airplane drones, beating out some of my stalwart test pairs like the Jabra Elite 85t (especially at the very low end) and cheaper options like the Soundcore Space A40. To do so, they create a fair bit of white noise in the midrange, but it’s benign enough to easily melt away with some music playing.
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The Jabra buds faired better than the Tour Pro 2 with higher pitched sounds in my tests, offering a bit more suppression of whiny noises like my weed whacker and mower, though not by much.Bose’s last-gen QuietComfort Earbuds, which remain some of the best noise cancelers around, handily squash both pairs, especially in the upper register.
But JBL’s buds do enough to silence much of the world around you, especially when you add a touch of music. As an example, while typing this review, I had no idea my robot vacuum was in the room slamming against my mic stand as I jammed out to some classic Blind Melon.
The Tour Pro 2’s transparency mode is similarly middle-of-the-pack, if a bit worse. You can hear everything relatively clearly and carry on conversations with the feature engaged, but it’s not as natural sounding as options like theBeats Studio Buds+, and definitely not the AirPods Pro. Unlike Apple and Bose’s latest flagships, there’s also no option for adaptive transparency to help limit extra-loud sounds that pop up, like sirens or car horns.
Clear, Accessible Sound
- Drivers: 10mm proprietary
- Bluetooth: 5.3
- Microphones: 6 microphones total
I’ve always enjoyed JBL’s signature sound, and that rings true once again with the Tour Pro 2. The sound is clear, accessible, and well-balanced across registers, without any standout sibilance or over-heated frequencies. The buds also do a fine job with instrument separation, allowing the timbres of brass, guitars, and percussion to resonate in their own little corners of the soundstage.
Part of that is due to a large and open sound signature, especially for a pair of in-ear buds. Songs like Radiohead’s “Kid A” are allowed plenty of space for the cacophony of instruments and effects to spread out, making it easy to let them wash over you without becoming masked or distorted.
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You won’t get the same kind of textural instrumental definition or dimensionality as some of my favorites around this price point, like Sony’s brilliant WH-1000XM4, Sennheiser’s Momentum 3 True Wireless, or even Apple’s AirPods Pro (gen 2). I also wished for more warmth and body in the mids, with some instruments coming through a bit thin on occasion.
Some may also find the bass a little on the lighter side (though it’s plenty for my taste). If that’s the case, you’ve got plenty of ways to adjust the sound. There are several EQ presets like Jazz, Club, and Bass, and you can further customize them with a multi-band EQ, which is always a nice option.
Unfortunately, the earbuds take a step back when it comes to call quality. The majority of earbuds I test at this price seem to nail those fundamentals these days (finally), but I had a few complaints while taking calls outside, and occasionally on my end, callers sounded thin or distorted.
To be clear, I was still able to carry on calls just fine, but it wasn’t as natural or error-free as I’d expect for a pair of modern flagship earbuds.
JBL Tour Pro Microphone Sample: Quiet Room
JBL Tour Pro Microphone Sample: Bathroom Fan
Great Battery Life
- Earbuds battery: up to 8 hours with ANC (6 hours with Adaptive ANC), 10 hours without
- Case battery: 3 case recharges, up to 30 hours without ANC
- Total battery: up to 40 hours without ANC
On the bright side, the Tour Pro 2 offer seriously good battery life. It’s not the very best you can find out there, but at up to 8 hours with ANC and 10 hours without it, it beats the top pairs from Apple, Samsung, and Bose, alongside plenty of others. By the time you have to worry about charging them, you’ll likely be ready to put the buds away, and that’s how it should be in 2023.
The Best Wireless Earbuds of 2023
Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II
Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II
Best Wireless Earbuds Under $100
Soundcore by Anker Life P3
Best Wireless Earbuds Under $50
Best Wireless Earbuds for iPhone
Apple AirPods Pro (2nd Generation)
Best Wireless Earbuds for Android
Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
Best Wireless Earbuds for Workouts
JBL Reflect Flow Pro
Best Noise Cancelling Wireless Earbuds
Should You Buy the JBL Tour Pro 2?
Whether the JBL Tour Pro 2 are for you depends on what you value most. These aren’t my top option at their high price point. For iPhone users, that title easily goes to the AirPods Pro (gen 2), and for Android, I’d aim toward something like the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro, Sony’s aging but still excellent WH-1000XM4, or Bose’s QuietComfort Earbuds 2.
None of those options have a fancy touchscreen charging case, and that’s really part and parcel with the Tour Pro 2’s value quotient. If that’s something you’re intrigued by, you can get it here with a boatload of features, good sound, and excellent battery life. Otherwise, I’d probably skip these buds for something that trades some novelty and panache for an added bump of polish and performance.
Here’s What We Like
- Clear, accessible sound
- Excellent battery life
- An absolute glut of features
- Futuristic touchscreen case
And What We Don't
- No dedicated volume control
- Tinny transparency mode
- So-so call quality
- Case begs a premium
Is The JBL tour Pro waterproof? ›
The device is dustproof and water-resistant. Water-resistant devices can resist the penetration of water, such as powerful water jets, but not being submerged into water.Are JBL Live Pro 2 comfortable? ›
The JBL Live Pro 2 are great for sports and fitness. They're well-built and are certified IPX5 for resistance against direct water contact. They're also decently comfortable but lack stability fins and can pop out of your ears if you can't get a good fit.When did JBL Tour Pro 2 come out? ›
The JBL Tour Pro 2 launched in January 2023 in most regions and will be coming to the US in Spring 2023. The buds cost $249.95 / £220 / AU$350 in either champagne or black finishes.Can I bring my JBL in the shower? ›
Fully protected against dust. We recommend a minimum water resistance of 7 for a bathroom speaker. This ensures that if your speaker falls into the water (and it is quickly removed), it will still work. A water resistance of 8 or higher means you can take your speakers into the shower - they are completely waterproof!Can I take my JBL earbuds in the shower? ›
The JBL Reflect flow is rated IPX7, which means it's waterproof and safe to use while taking a shower.Are Bose or JBL earbuds better? ›
While both headphones are well-built, the Bose's ANC system does a significantly better job blocking out background noise, and they have longer continuous battery life. Some users also may prefer their sound profile's touch of extra bass.Is Bose or JBL better for headphones? ›
The Bose are more comfortable, feel better-built, and have a significantly better noise isolation performance. They also have a better overall microphone performance. However, the JBL have a longer continuous battery life.What is the alternative to JBL Pro 2? ›
The Soundcore Liberty 3 Pro is a great alternative to the JBL Live Pro 2, with multipoint, better outdoor call quality, and an also very bass-and-treble centric energetic sound.Are JBL a good brand? ›
For its premium quality, JBL speakers are more practical than its competitors, who offer the same quality and experience. In addition, their price tag makes the brand cost-effective and an easy choice.Does JBL Live Pro 2 work with iPhone? ›
Thanks to Bluetooth 5.2, they linked superbly with an iPhone 13 Pro and a Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra during my testing. The Pro 2 will instantly pause its noise cancellation during calls.
How many years do JBL earbuds last? ›
With moderate to heavy use, the answer to the question of how long do true wireless earbuds last is, that the lifespan of a wireless earbud is typically between one and two years. You can anticipate your earbuds to remain in good shape for two to three years if you treat them gently.What is the price of JBL tour? ›
JBL Tour One Wireless Headphones price in India starts from ₹ 19,999. The lowest price of JBL Tour One Wireless Headphones is ₹ 19,999 at Croma on 20th May 2023.Does JBL Live Pro 2 have ear detection? ›
Sensors can detect when they are removed from your ears so that the music is paused, saving battery life. You can use the app to play a sound from your earbuds to help you locate them.Can I bring a JBL on a plane? ›
Most airlines allow passengers to bring a portable electronic device like a Bluetooth speaker (like the JBL Charge 2) in their checked luggage as long as it does not contain any lithium-ion batteries or other hazardous materials. It must be”powered solely by a battery with a capacity of no greater than 100 Wh (3.4 Ah).Is JBL rain proof? ›
The Charge 3 takes the party everywhere, poolside or in the rain, thanks to the waterproof design, durable fabric and rugged housing.Does steam affect a speaker? ›
Most speakers are not built for steam. Moisture also adversely affects their performance, causing the sound to become muffled. But MrSteam speakers are satisfyingly flush-mounted and fully splash-proof, so owners can enjoy crystal-clear sound and steam simultaneously.How do I know if my JBL is waterproof? ›
So you can easily find out the minimum protection you want by checking the speaker's IP code. An IP code consists of 2 digits. The first digit stands for dustproof, and the second digit stands for waterproof.How do you clean the inside of JBL earbuds? ›
Remove the earbud tips and let them soak in warm soapy water for at least 30 minutes. Let them dry overnight. Rinse the earbuds thoroughly with clean water and dry them off with a cloth. To disinfect the earbuds, you can also use alcohol.Can you sleep with JBL earbuds? ›
A: We don't recommend wearing our JBL Endurance Race TWS while sleeping as you may lean on the earbuds and possibly hurt your ear since this is an in-ear earbud.Which is the No 1 brand for earbuds? ›
Apple. Apple undoubtedly takes the number one spot as the best “premium” earbuds brand in India.
Which earbuds have best quality? ›
- Sony WF-1000XM4. These brilliant wireless earbuds deliver a stellar all-round performance. ...
- Sony WF-C500. The best wireless earbuds for those on a tight budget. ...
- Sony WF-C700N. ...
- Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II. ...
- JBL Live Pro 2 TWS. ...
- Panasonic RZ-S500W. ...
- Apple AirPods Pro 2. ...
- Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3.
JBL is owned by Harman International, an independent subsidiary of Samsung Electronics.Which is more expensive Bose or JBL? ›
Key Points. JBL and Bose are both manufacturers of sound speakers, headsets, and earbuds. JBL is a higher-end option than Bose, but Bose is often the more affordable choice.Are JBL better than beats? ›
The Beats are better-built, and they have better noise isolation and leakage performances. However, the JBL are more comfortable, and they have a longer continuous battery life and a better mic performance.Why JBL is the best? ›
Advantages. The advantages of a jbl speakers are that they have great sound quality, and the price is not too high. They also come in many different sizes so you can find one to fit your needs perfectly.Which is better Sony or JBL? ›
On a purely aesthetic level, Sony wins out over JBL. While JBL soundbars are sleek and simple, its Bluetooth speakers are on the flashier side, with various bright color choices and rugged builds that show off their toughness against water, dust, and other nasty things.Is JBL better than Skullcandy? ›
While both headphones are comfortable and feel well-built, the JBL have a more neutral sound profile, which some users may prefer, and their integrated mic offers better overall performance.Why is JBL more expensive? ›
Obviously, more expensive JBL models have a few more features than their cheaper siblings. Generally speaking, the more you pay, the bigger the battery, giving you not only more time between recharges, but also the potential to juice up your phone or tablet directly from the speaker itself.Which JBL wireless earbuds don't fall out? ›
The JBL Reflect Aero TWS true wireless earbuds are the best workout headphones for the gym because they stay securely in place, they have simple controls, and they're waterproof and sweatproof.Which JBL has good bass? ›
The best Bluetooth speaker for bass that we've tested is the JBL PartyBox 310.
Is JBL better than Samsung? ›
The noise canceling of the JBL Live Pro+ is slightly stronger. These earbuds by JBL mute more ambient noise than the ones by Samsung. That's why these earbuds are more suitable for you if noise canceling is important to you.Is JBL a Chinese company? ›
JBL is an American company known for manufacturing both home, automotive, and professional quality audio equipment, which includes portable loudspeakers and headphones. The company was acquired by Harman International Industries, which is a Samsung Electronics subsidiary.Is JBL good as Apple? ›
A lot of the buds from JBL offer better sound quality. However, when it comes to convenience, JBL TWS will have a pretty tough time beating the Airpods.Can you shower with JBL Live Pro 2? ›
Same if you're caught in the rain. You won't be able to shower with your JBLs on, and we truly don't recommend you take a dip into the pool with them on, but they should be fine when exposed to a little water here and there.Are JBL earbuds good for iPhone? ›
Wear JBL wired earbuds and earphones with confidence, as they are built for premium sound. Perfect for both iPhone and Android smartphones.Should I keep my earbuds always in case? ›
No, you should not leave earbuds in the charging case when not used. Keeping them in the case when not in use can cause moisture to build up, which can damage the electronics in the earbuds.What brand of earbuds last the longest? ›
|Name||Battery Life (earbuds)||Price|
|JBL Reflect Flow Best for Sports||10 hours||BUY|
|Cambridge Audio Melomania 1+ Best Customizable Sound||9 hours||BUY|
|Edifier NB2 Pro Best w/ ANC||9 hours||BUY|
|Beats Powerbeats 4 Wireless Best for Continuous Listening||15 hours||BUY|
Basically, if your ears are bigger than the standard size, it will fall out because the earbuds won't have anything to clutch on to. On the other hand, if the person's ear size is smaller than usual, the earbuds won't be able to go deep enough and will most likely pop out.What's the most expensive JBL? ›
|Mobile Speaker||Price||Available From|
|JBL Studio 680 Floorstanding Loudspeaker||₹1,20,999||Upcoming|
|JBL Bar 1000 Pro 880W Bluetooth Soundbar||₹1,09,999||Feb, 2023|
|JBL Bar 800 Pro Bluetooth Soundbar||₹89,999||Jan, 2023|
|JBL Bar 9.1 820 W Bluetooth Soundbar||₹69,999||Feb, 2021|
The Everest isn't a "lifestyle" speaker; each one weighs a hefty 300 pounds, and they're 43 inches high, 38 inches wide, and 18.25 inches deep. They're also really expensive; the pair at EarsNova runs $42,000.
What is JBL tour? ›
JBL Tour ONE Wireless Noise Cancelling Bluetooth Headphones, Hi-Res Audio, Perfect Voice Clarity Phone Calls, up to 50H Battery, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa (Black)Can JBL earbuds be tracked? ›
FIND MY BUDS
Locate your missing buds by getting a notification on the location and time of last use. Activate “ring” to receive a ring notification on your device – when the earbuds are in range - and help you finding your misplaced buds.
Earbuds cannot help with more severe cases of hearing loss
While earbuds may be able to help those with mild hearing loss, they cannot amplify sound enough to help those with more severe cases of hearing loss. If your hearing loss is moderate to severe, earbuds may not work as well for you.
Fortunately, JBL headphones are water-resistant and will withstand any adverse conditions you encounter during your workouts. JBL sport earphones are waterproof and offer protection from sweat and rain. Whether it's drizzling, spitting or pouring rain, JBL sport headphones can take it.Are JBL speakers waterproof or water-resistant? ›
JBL Charge 5 is IP67 waterproof and dustproof, so you can bring your speaker anywhere.Can a JBL be submerged in water? ›
Completely waterproof, the JBL Clip 2 provides 8 hours of playtime, allowing you to take your music wherever you go, be it land or water. Stream music wirelessly via Bluetooth, or plug it into any smartphone or tablet with its attached audio cable.Are any JBL headphones waterproof? ›
Featuring IPX7, the JBL Endurance JUMP are designed to be used in all weather or sport conditions.Is JBL salt water proof? ›
Can I use the Charge 5 at the pool or beach? Yes, being IP67 certified, it is water and dust resistant. However, as always be careful and follow the manufacturer's instructions. It can be submerged for 30 minutes at a depth of one meter, but not in salt water and not with chlorine.How long can JBL headphones last? ›
Just open the case and start listening, as the JBL TUNE 225TWS earbuds immediately pair with your device, while Dual Connect lets you use either earbud, or both. Listen longer and in comfort, with up to 25 hours of battery life.How many years does JBL headphones last? ›
With moderate to heavy use, the answer to the question of how long do true wireless earbuds last is, that the lifespan of a wireless earbud is typically between one and two years. You can anticipate your earbuds to remain in good shape for two to three years if you treat them gently.
Which JBL is the loudest? ›
#1 Loudest JBL Speaker: JBL PartyBox 1000
The JBL PartyBox 1000 is hands down the loudest JBL speaker currently available and can deliver a whopping 1100 watts of power with extremely deep bass.
JBL speakers are known for being “loud” and “bass heavy”, with notable releases including the JBL Boombox 2 and JBL Xtreme 2 designed specifically for the outdoor speaker consumer. Bose, on the other hand, is much better at delivering home audio and home theater speakers that provide a cinematic listening experience.How do you get water out of a JBL? ›
- Use towel to work wipe away excess moisture and air dry for remaining, if not, a blow dryer/fan from a distance works too. ...
- No worries, the speaker is built to venture everything, drop it in water without any worries and when you're done, just leave it to get dry on its own. ...
- Towel dry, then let air dry.
The IPX7 waterproof housing makes GO 2 perfect for worry-free listening by the beach or poolside, or even in it.Does JBL have good earphones? ›
The JBL headphones are the best in sound quality and bass.How to waterproof earbuds? ›
Luckily for all electronics in the world, nano coating is the unsung hero that makes your earbuds completely water repellant. The nano coating, which is hydrophobic, causes water to simply bead up on contact and run off any treated internal components of the earbuds.