Phone manufacturers started to ditch the humble 3.5mm headphone jack from its phones back in 2016, and in 2022 you’ll struggle to find a flagship phone with one included – though, rather ironically, it’s still prevalent on budget smartphones.
That means consumers have been making the switch from wired to wireless, with the most popular option being true wireless earbuds. They’re much smaller, more convenient, and easier to use than over-head alternatives, and while there was once a sacrifice to battery life and audio quality, that’s no longer the case.
That statement is embodied by JBL’s TUNE collection. The Tune 130NC TWS and TUNE 230NC TWS earbuds are the latest from the established audio brand, offering a premium listening experience at a much more affordable price than popular wireless earbuds from the likes of Apple, Sony and Bose.
Let’s talk about the look, because JBL’s new TUNE collection is just as much a fashion accessory as it is a piece of technology. Both the TUNE 130NC TWS and TUNE 230NC TWS buds are available in a range of colour options to completement your style including Blue, White & Black, with an additional Sand finish available on the TUNE 230NC TWS buds for extra flare.
The TUNE 130NC TWS buds feature JBL’s Dot design, allowing the buds to sit snugly and securely in the ear and provide deep bass performance, great ambient noise isolation and a discreet listening experience. For those that want a more traditional earbud experience, the Closed Stem design of the TUNE 230NC TWS is ideal.
Of course, it’s not just about the looks; the new TUNE 130NC TWS and TUNE 230NC TWS feature JBL’s signature Pure Bass Sound that lets you feel, not just hear, the thumping bass in your favourite tunes, making for an ideal exercise companion. This is further aided by the inclusion of 3 sizes of swappable eartips that help create a better seal for a more rounded, powerful audio experience.
Those ear tips also aid the passive noise isolation on offer from the new buds, though the biggest feature is undoubtedly the inclusion of Active Noise Cancellation – one of the key upgrades compared to JBL’s older T125 and T225 buds.
Regardless of the option you go for, both the TUNE 130NC TWS and 230NC TWS buds can quieten loud environments. You can enjoy your songs and podcasts the way they were meant to be heard, while helping you keep focused on the task at hand, be it work, gaming or studying.
The built-in microphones used primarily for ANC can also be utilised to enable a Smart Ambient mode that essentially does the opposite, funnelling in environmental sound so you’re more aware of your surroundings. It’s perfect for those that exercise outdoors and want to stay alert to nearby users and vehicles, as well as those that like to chat without taking the buds out of their ears.
Features like ANC and Smart Ambient modes are premium features usually exclusive to high-end wireless earbuds, giving consumers real value for money with the new JBL TUNE range.
There’s also the JBL app for iOS and Android to consider; using the companion app, you can tailor the audio to your liking using a built-in EQ, tweak the on-bud controls and enable unique features like Smart Audio Modes that can adjust audio latency depending on whether you’re watching movies or listening to music. Considering the affordable nature of the buds, it’s an impressive offering.
JBL’s TUNE 130NC TWS and TUNE 230NC TWS both offer a staggering 8 hours of playtime with the ANC tech enabled, stretching to 10 hours if you decide to disable it. Combined with the charge case, which can hold multiple charges, the buds should keep going for around 40 hours before needing a top-up via USB-C.
It’s an impressive claim compared to even top-end wireless buds, helping keep you untethered and on-the-go without fear you’ll run out of charge mid-journey. JBL’s TUNE 130NC TWS and TUNE 230NC TWS buds are stylish, offer powerful bass performance and premium features like ANC and a Smart Ambient modes at an affordable price of just £79.99, and they’re both available to buy from Currys right now.