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JBL Quantum TWS Review

Updated: Oct 12, 2023

JBL take sound very seriously. In fact, they're known for crafting a wide range of products. From performance audio, recording, broadcast, cinema speakers and of course, gaming headsets. They know how to craft sound for each unique experience, making each sound perfect for whatever setting you're in. There's a large range of products to pick from and whether you're using it for personal use or professional use, JBL have you covered.


And thanks to our friends at JBL, I got my hands on the Quantum TWS at PAX 2022! (shout out to everyone at the JBL booth). For the past few weeks I've been using these earbuds for everything. From blocking out chatter in a noisy setting, listening to music on the go, and playing games (of course). Most recently I played Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection with the earbuds, and it's safe to say these are pretty good. The adaptive noise cancelling feature stood out to me the most, and I've never used any headphones or earbuds for that matter that have noise cancelling quite like this. As you can already tell, I rate them quite highly - but what else do these earbuds offer? Let's dive in.


First up, what's in the box for AU$229.95 (currently on sale for black Friday $137.00, and available at some selected retailers)

  • JBL Quantum TWS earbuds

  • Charging case

  • USB charging cable

  • USB wireless dongle

  • Silicone ear tips - S,M,L

Features

  • Bluetooth

  • Adaptive Noise Cancelling

  • Ambient Aware

  • Built-in Microphone

  • Hands Free Call

  • True Wireless

  • Wireless

Specs

  • Driver sensitivity at 1kHz/1mW (dB)106

  • Dynamic frequency response range - (Hz)20 Hz - 20 kHz

  • Impedance (ohms)- 16

  • Active Frequency Response 20 Hz – 20 kHz

  • Bluetooth profiles- A2DP V1.3, AVRCP V1.6, HFP V1.8

  • Bluetooth frequency Low latency wireless 2.4 GHz - 2.4835 GHz

  • Bluetooth transmitted modulation GFSK, π/4 QPSK, 8DPSK

  • Bluetooth transmitter power <12 dBm EIRP

  • Bluetooth version - 5.2

  • Charging time (hours from empty) - 2

  • Maximum music play time with ANC off (hours) - 8

  • Maximum music play time with ANC on (hours) - 5

  • Maximum play time (hours)- 16

  • Maximum talk time (hours)- 4

  • Charging case battery life (max hours)- 16

For the price it asks for, it doesn't seem like much at a first glance. However, with the high quality features and specs it provides, I think it's justifiable if you're looking to purchase something long lasting. However, it unfortunately doesn't come with a USB-C adaptor, so some people may not be able to use it on certain devices. Thankfully I had one on hand already, but for some this may be a bit of an inconvenience for some.


Like many earbuds on the market, you can either use these earbuds via dongle or bluetooth for your convenience. Both ways of using them are simple, and even if you're using the dongle it won't get in the way if you slip it in your pocket. Personally I used the dongle more than bluetooth, just because I found using the dongle was a bit better for when playing games. The earbuds fit perfectly - and depending on which silicone ear tip you use, the earbuds won't (and shouldn't) fall out. The charging case itself is sleek, compact and small, and it's easy to store in your pocket or bag. It's also quite light so you can take it with you anywhere you go.


From my experience, the battery life also held up pretty well- of course it may drain quicker depending on which setting you have it on. Still though, I found it reliable and there's quite a few hours you can use them for before putting them back on charge. As mentioned in the specs above, it'll take about 2 hours to fully charge them up. It'll last 5 hours if you use it with ANC on, 4hrs of talk time and even maximum play time of 16 hours. So, no matter what you're using it for you'll still get a few hours on end depending on how you use it.


These earbuds are extremely useful, and can I say even a game changer? Like many people, I can get distracted easily, but the second I used these earbuds and used the noise cancelling feature? I was immediately immersed even more in whichever game I was playing, and could actually concentrate properly. Bonus points due to the fact that when I was playing Uncharted or any game for that matter - the fans on my Tomcat-A would still be quite loud. With the noise cancelling feature on, I didn't hear anything. I tested it out a few times to hear the difference, and wow. Same goes when I'm using it for work purposes, whether it be in the office, exercise or for Gaming Australia, I got so much stuff done.


In terms of specs (while I have some understanding of it), it's quite impressive. For me these are the second earbuds I've ever used, so maybe I haven't had the full scope, but still I'd know if they weren't great or worth your time.



These earbuds are compatible with;

  • Smart phones (I believe it should be most, though I only tested it on mine)

  • Laptops

  • PC

  • PlayStation 4

  • PlayStation 5

  • Nintendo Switch


What I tested them with;

  • Laptop (Allied Gaming Tomcat-A)

  • PC

  • Samsung Galaxy S9

  • PlayStation 5

  • Nintendo Switch

  • Not Xbox compatible (sadly)


I played a variety of other games on my laptop including Halo Infinite, Cultic: Chapter One and Justice Sucks just to name a few. I had no issues with any of the games sound, from the triple A titles to the smaller titles , they worked and sounded flawless. On the PS5 I tested them out with Gotham Knights, and on my GS9 I used spotify to listen to music, and on occasion podcasts.


Personally I didn't use them much for calls or talking in general for that matter, so for me this aspect of the earbuds weren't my main focus. However it's still there if you need it, which is always handy. For reference, below is what it sounds like with Bluetooth and Dongle;



The other great thing about these earbuds is that it's super easy to set up! (hooray for easy set-ups!) As you can see below, you'll also be able to view all your battery percentages, and you can even connect them with Google Assistant and adjust settings to your preference.



By also using The JBL Quantum Engine, there's even more you can adjust to your preferences. From spatial sound, microphone and equalizer, it gives you plenty of options to adjust it to your liking. More accessibility to crafting the sound you want is always a welcome feature.

I didn't come across any major issues personally, but this isn't to say there aren't any. I haven't come across anyone else who has had any issues either, but of course with any piece of technology you never know. In saying that though, it's been so far so good from my end, and I've been using these almost every day for a few weeks now.


Small, non bulky dongle that isn't annoying

Pros

  • Immersive sound

  • Clean, crispy smooth sound especially in games

  • Impressive high quality, and excellent adaptive noise cancelling feature

Cons

  • Doesn't include a USB-C adaptor

  • Not Xbox compatible

  • Controls on the earbuds can sometimes be difficult to remember




Overall the JBL Quantum TWS earbuds are worth looking into if you're looking for high quality sound, with an impressive noise cancelling feature. The price on it's own may be a bit pricey for some people (which is fair enough), especially considering the fact it doesn't come with a usb-c adaptor for those who may need it.


It's easy to use no matter what you're using it on - whether it be PS5, PC, laptop or your smartphone, it's super simple (mostly, some of the controls for taking calls can be difficult to remember though). Of course, I did come across some minor issues as I mentioned above in the con section, but not enough to put me off by a long shot.


I can recommend these earbuds regardless, whether this is your first pair of gaming earbuds or if you've been on the search for something else. No matter what you're playing - be it single player game or a multiplayer shooter, these are great for all your gaming needs. It's also great for everyday use so it'll be convenient for you in the long run, and to save you switching between other earbuds.




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1 Comment


Alexandre Goloskok
Alexandre Goloskok
Dec 02, 2022

Hi there, thanks for the detailed review! All Bluetooth headphones dramatically drop in quality when doing mic and audio at the same time, ie when doing calls, which is a protocol limitation. I imagine these won’t be an exception when connected with Bluetooth, but can you confirm that they don’t have this issue over the dongle? tia

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