Headphones for sports buffs

Jabra Sport Coach: Great sound but errors when tracking motion

The Jabra Sport Coach is a good-looking pair of earphones, with sleek, organically curved earbud shells and a compact black foam carrying case.

But wearing the Sport Coach is not easy for a first-timer. After some trial and error, I learnt that the earbud has to be rotated so that the rectangular protrusion at the bottom is tucked inside the curve of the ear. Once you get the right fit though, the earphones feel very secure, and stay in place even when the wire is tugged.

To link with a smartphone, users must download two apps: Jabra Sport Life and Jabra Service.

I like that the app is compatible with multiple music players and services, such as my phone's default media player, as well as Google Play Music and Spotify.

The sound from the Sport Coach is great for working out, with a suitably whomping bass and good clarity in the mids and highs.

  • TECH SPECS

  • PRICE: $248

    IN THE BOX: Carrying case, a set of silicon eargels, a set of wings, wire clips and USB cable

    WEIGHT: 16g

    BATTERY: Up to 5.5 hours play time, and two hours charging time.

    FREQUENCY RANGE: 20 Hz to 20 kHz

    RATING


    FEATURES: 5/5

    DESIGN: 5/5

    PERFORMANCE: 4/5

    BATTERY LIFE: 3/5

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 4/5

    OVERALL: 4/5 

The sound from the Sport Coach is great for working out, with a suitably whomping bass and good clarity in the mids and highs.

Once the earbuds were fitted properly, there was good sound isolation, and I could barely make out the gym's piped-in music or other runners' footfalls. The earphones stayed well in place throughout all the activities that I did, although the seal on the left side kept feeling a little looser than my right, and I had to adjust it once or twice.

There is a motion sensor in the left earbud, and when running it can track elements like pace, cadence and distance, and give you read-outs at pre-set intervals.

But I found errors in the tracking. In a 1.5km run on the treadmill, it registered only 0.06km, although GPS was turned off and it should have been using the motion sensor.

However, when I tried the Cooper test (run as far as you can within 12 minutes), it began to show readouts, although it registered 1.2km for every 1km I ran.

Lisabel Ting

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 21, 2015, with the headline 'Headphones for sports buffs Jabra Sport Coach: Great sound but errors when tracking motion'. Print Edition | Subscribe