If your life is inspired by celebrities or social media influencers then you have probably come across many workout videos of your favorite personalities. One thing that I have found to be common in most of these videos are Beats, a pair of headphones by Dre. As impressive as they look (and hopefully sound), I have never owned one myself solely because of the price tag they carry.
Since I have been asked many times for a preferred alternative with a comparatively lower number on its price label, but having design similarities, I decided to share this JBL T450BT review.
Before reading further, I want you to understand that this is a standalone review of the JBL T450BT. And since it can be bought at a fraction of the price of Beats it is not fair to compare any of the aesthetics between the two. The latter is only mentioned here because of its appearance and influence.
So, let’s start with what you are introduced to first;
Table of Contents
Contents of the Box
The unboxing experience of the T450 is nothing out of the ordinary. JBL sells these in a very standard cardboard box packaging. Contents of the box include a charging cable, some standard issue paper work, warranty card (depending on where you buy them from), and of course, the T450BT headphones.
Unlike the Avantree Audition Pro which are available in multiple colors, JBL has made these available in three beautiful colors, blue, black and white. And for some reason, I found the price to be varying for each color variant with the white one being most costly and black one being the cheapest. While the price difference is only just a couple of bucks between each one, I don’t get the point of it as all of them share the same overall specs.
Design and Quality
The design, as I mentioned earlier, is somewhat inspired by Beats. Then again, most of the over the ear headphones share this same design aesthetic. Anyways, the pair is very lightweight thanks to its plastic built. Quality of the plastic seems a little cheap, but considering the price JBL is retailing them at, it’s actually acceptable.
Since we are on the subject of quality, the T450BT clearly shows that JBL had to cut a lot of corners to ensure that the pair is affordable. For instance, the headband lacks any sort of padding. The earcups are padded though. But even that padding is covered with pleather which cracks and dusts off rather quickly, exposing the padding underneath.
While they do look good, especially in blue and white color, they feel very average in quality and won’t impress many of you. There is no connector available on the device for wired connectivity either and these headphones solely rely on Bluetooth.
Here, the right earcup is the dominant one in design as it carries all the controls. There’s a multifunctional 3-button based control system along with an LED indicator, a microphone and, of course, a separate power button.
The 3-button system is used for controlling volume, switching between tracks and call management. Although the controls are very responsive, they are a little cramped. Fortunately, their physical design makes it easy to differentiate between each with just a feel so, you will not have any issues. And speaking of buttons, the power button is also multifunctional and also doubles for Bluetooth pairing.
The only issue I have with the T450BT is that it cannot be worn for longer duration without causing you some discomfort. Don’t get me wrong, they can easily last you through walks, jogs, workouts and even commutes, but not for more than 60 to 75 minutes. The main cause of discomfort for me was the missing padding on the headband.
On a more positive note, the clamping of the headband isn’t too tight and doesn’t create any pressure spots. The plastic headband also hides a steel frame inside which can be slid from either side to adjust the height of the headphones.
The padding on the earcups is also very comfortable and soft. But since it is pleather, it is prone to wear and tear when exposed to sweat.
Call and Sound Quality
The output quality of sound is what you would expect at this price range, average. The bass output is very dominant here and as the volume is increased, the bass seems to become more balanced. But it tends to take over and compress other sounds like treble and vocals underneath it.
However, if you can find the right balance of volume, everything can be heard clearly and the overall sound output and quality become enjoyable.
There’s no noise cancellation available here, a common factor between earphones and headphones that can be bought in this price range. But, you will not miss it much as the earcups of T450BT do a great job of keeping most of the unwanted sound out. Of course, you will have to listen to music on a much higher volume to make this work.
The call quality isn’t anything amusing to write about. While you are able to hear the caller clearly, the voice does not feel natural and becomes somewhat mechanical. And these headphones are only good for taking calls if you are using them in a quiet environment. If you taking calls on it at a public place like a park or a subway station, the mic will pick up every noise from the background and will make it difficult for the person on the other end to understand you.
Battery Life and Connectivity
JBL has stated on the box that the T450BT has 11 hours of battery life and we all know whatever the company states about battery life is never actually accurate. In my experience, the pair managed to deliver a couple of minutes over 10 hours or a couple of minutes under it, but never 11 hours. Nonetheless, I found these 10 hours of playback to be more than adequate for average daily use.
The real issue I have is with its charging speed. The pair takes almost 3 hours to charge to full capacity. That is a lot of time considering the modern active lifestyle. But if you can bear with it, you should be good to go.
As I mentioned earlier, the device only offers Bluetooth connectivity. It supports the technology’s 4.0 version but does not allow multiple device pairing or NFC connectivity.
The wireless connection has a range of 10 meters and works great with music playback. Yet, noticeable latency can be experienced during video playback and there is no way for minimizing it.
Everything has there own pros and cons, and the JBL T450BT is no exception. While I will not be listing them down here, I have mentioned everything in thorough detail in this JBL T450BT review, so, you can make them out yourselves.
As far as my thought on the device goes, I believe the pros here easily outweigh the cons of the device. It’s stylish, affordable and does a decent job of delivering quality sound. So, for those who are looking for over the ear headphones and want a definitive answer, the T450BT gets a thumbs up from me.