These are the JBL Tune 510 BTs and they are in for a review. Jumping straight into the box. It contains some paperwork isncuding a setup guide, some safety information and some warranty cards, USB-C cable for charging and the headphones themselves.
Everything is in the right cup on the Tune 510s. Power button, play/pause and volume, microphone and charging port. There are holes ontop of the cups working as pressure release cavities. These help the drivers (speakers) operate at their best and provide the best possible sound.
What I have a question mark on is the placement of the USB port. It’s also on top of the cup and I feel it’s too vulnerable to debris as well as moisture from lets say some rain showers. From a durability stand point this does not feel like the best place to put the charging port.
Setup and pairing
Pairing is the usual. As soon as you power them on they enter pairing mode. All you do is just go to your device’s bluetooth settings to get them connected.
Dual pairing is supported on the JBL Tune 510s but it’s manual. If you connect a smartphone and then you wish to also connect a laptop you have to disconnect the phone from the headphones and connect the laptop.
If the laptop is switched off the headphones will not switch to the phone automatically. You have to then manually connect to the laptop. However if you recieve a call on your phone whilst you are connected to your laptop, the headphones will switch audio source to the phone.
Comfort and sound
Headphones are on-the-ear so they rest on top of the ears. The clamping force is tight to keep them on so they won’t be the most comfortable headphones out there. Definitely not as comfortable as the Sony XM4s.
Audio quality is really good. The mids and highs are crisp and defined. It’s got quite a bright sound stage and the low end is very punchy. It’s not over the top like with Sony when you turn the bass effect all the way up to 10. It’s the right amount for a variety of tracks including bass heavy hip hop and amapiano.
Volume gets loud enough as well and depending on what you are playing it can actually get uncomfortable listening to music or watching videos at full volume. In terms of audio fidelity, something for the audiophiles, the JBL Tune 510BTs are not rated for High Res audio and they also do not support LDAC which allows higher data transfer rates to the headphones from the phone.
But even though they lack the audiophile grade resolution they are still as good as you can get for non-high res audio compatible headphones. Most people won’t even notice the difference in sound quality between these US$80 headphones and some US$350 jazzed out Sony headphones. It’s unfortunate there is no 3.5mm jack on these headphones so if you rely on that then these aren’t the headphones for you.
Battery life is pretty healthy as well. The JBL Tune 510s rated for 40 hours of playback in a single charge and if they are dead, a 5 minute charge will add 2hrs worth of juice. For the maniacs out there. No you cannot use them whilst they are charging. Connecting power to the port switches them off.
Overall the JBL Tune 510 BTs are a good pair of headphones. They have great sound, they look pretty and the battery life is very generous. If you are not phased by the lack of a headphone jack or high resolution audio, the on-ear design and interesting charging port placement these are some pretty good headphones. And pretty affordable too for the experience. About US$80 in some shops in Harare and online they can get to US$50.