JBL Live Beam 3 earbuds make a strong case for themselves

One of the last bastions of screen-free interactions – your TWS earbuds – now have a touchscreen to interact with
 JBL Live Beam 3
JBL Live Beam 3

With a glut of legitimately good options in the true wireless space these days, it’s hard for a brand to stand out and be considered. That’s not the ‘case’ with the JBL Live Beam 3 – for all of its merits on audio quality, battery life and durability, the conversation has to start with its charging case, specifically the 1.45-inch touchscreen on the case. That’s right, one of the last bastions of screen-free interactions – your TWS earbuds – now have a touchscreen to interact with.

The Live Beam 3’s case enables a bunch of use cases for which you’d typically be whipping out your phone, some of which relate to earbud settings while others relate to the case itself. Sample this – you’re arriving home and want to change from the “vocals” equalizer preset you had on all day for your work calls to the “jazz” preset for when you whip up a snack in the kitchen? Or if you’ve looking to settle in with the latest Bridgerton episode? There’s no need to fire up the companion JBL Headphones app on the smartphone, as you simply can swipe over on the case and change equalizer, ANC, volume and spatial audio settings. Particularly if you’ve taken the personalized hearing test, one can go through entire days switching between modes without even once opening up the app to tweak the settings. There’s even a basic timer and a flashlight, as well as an omnipresent battery life and time display, and even the ability to see incoming calls and notifications from your connected phone, and while you can play/pause/change music, it doesn’t display track information.

 JBL Live Beam 3
BenQ launches its TK710 4K UHD HDR laser projector
 JBL Live Beam 3
JBL Live Beam 3

But how do the buds sound? First off, they’re stem-style buds and at 5g, comfortable to wear for hours at end. By default, the sonic signature leans a bit towards the bass, but broadly balanced enough for most genres. There’s an undeniable sense of dynamism and punch to the music, and that’s before one dives into the custom EQ settings. Noise cancelling is reliable and works effectively, though it isn’t at the top of the league, particularly with the likes of the Sony WF-1000XM5. What I did like was the transparency modes – both the ambient awareness and talk through modes – both of which worked well across my testing.

Surprisingly though, the screen wasn’t as big a drain on battery life as I expected – once you get past the initial novelty, you don’t really use the screen all that much at a time, and it goes off automatically if you leave it alone. The buds go nearly 10/12 hours with ANC on/off, and a quick ten-minute charge gives you four hours of listening time, with a further 3 charges possible from a fully topped off case. The one-of-a-kind case comes at a premium, and it’s good to see JBL continue to innovate in new ways that drive the category forward.

Rating: 8/10

Price: Rs. 24,999

Related Stories

No stories found.