JBL has been a huge force in the headphone world of late, and we’ve been able to review a ton of their headphones — like the JBL E45BT and JBL E25BT headphones. Now, however, JBL is back with a slightly more premium offering — an addition to the Everest Elite series, called the JBL Everest Elite 750NC. Now, this isn’t the first time we’ve look at something in the Everest Elite series — previously, we reviewed the Everest Elite 700 headphones, which scored an excellent 8/10 in our review.
As the name suggests, the headphones do offer noise cancellation, which can be a nice feature for many users. But they’re not as cheap as the E-Series we reviewed before, and the JBL Everest Elite 750NC headphones come in at a cool $299.95. Are they worth the cash? We put them to the test to find out.
When you first take the JBL Everest Elite 750NC headphones out of the box, you’ll first notice their design, and they look great. The headphones are unmistakably JBL — they feature a similar design to the rest of JBL’s headphone lineup, but in case that doesn’t tip you off, you’ll find a large JBL logo on each ear cup — which itself is also well implemented into the design.
On the left ear cup you’ll find the 3.5mm aux port in case you want to use the headphones in wired mode, while on the right you’ll find the microUSB port and the controls. There are quite a few controls to get used to. First up is the power switch, which is located above a volume up button, center playback control button, and volume down button. Then, towards the bottom of the ear cup, you’ll find a Bluetooth button as well as a so-called “Ambient Awareness” button, which changes how much noise is cancelled out. There are a few options, including ANC on, Ambient Awareness Low, and Ambient Awareness High. You can also turn noise cancellation off, if you download and use the iOS or Android app.
The high number of buttons is necessary, we suppose, but it’s a little difficult to get used to all the controls and how to use them when you’re wearing the headphones. It’s not impossible, to be sure, but it will take some time.
In the box, you’ll find really everything you need. Apart from the headphones themselves, you’ll get a nice hard carry case, which comes with a little spot for the included aux cable, USB cable, and airplane adapter. The case is pretty sleek and flat — but the headphones easily fit inside thanks to their collapsable design.
In general, the JBL Everest Elite 750NC look good, seem well-built, and feature all the necessary accessories you’ll need.
Design doesn’t necessarily mean all that much if the headphones aren’t comfortable. Thankfully, they are. The headphones feature ample padding on the ear cups and under the headband, and we were able to wear the headphones for hours at a time without them getting uncomfortable. Part of that has to do with the over-ear design — which is traditionally a lot more comfortable than on-ear headphones.
If we had to criticize, we would say that there could be a little more padding in the headband — or slightly better quality padding if not. The first spot to get uncomfortable will likely be the top of your head, and a bit more padding would be helpful with that. The other downside is that the headphones get slightly hot sometimes — but not too much, and its not a deal breaker for us.
Still, in the grand scheme of things, the JBL Everest Elite 750NC headphones are generally comfortable, and we had no trouble listening for a few hours at a time.
Now for the all-important sound — before we dive into frequency response, we will say that the JBL Everest Elite 750NC headphones sound good. They are, however, very sculpted, so purists may not appreciate their tone.
There is, however, a caveat here — the frequency response is totally different when ANC is off than it is when it’s on. Ultimately, we much preferred the sound of the headphones with ANC off.
The bass on the headphones is generally deep and powerful. These are most certainly bass-heavy headphones, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Kick drums punch through the mix, while bass guitars and synthesizers are nice and smooth. Some bass enthusiasts may look for even more bass, but the truth is that there’s plenty to speak of here — both with and without ANC.
The mid-range is a bit of a rollercoaster when ANC is on. There are plenty of low-mids, and the result is quite a warm sound — but the high mids seem to be pretty drastically cut. We would have definitely liked to see some more high-mids, as it would have helped things like vocals and guitars cut through the mix a little better. That all changes when ANC is turned off, and the high-mids end up sounding much better.
That bleeds over into the high-end frequency response too. The low-highs get somewhat of a cut with ANC on, but when its turned off they’re present and well-tuned. The high highs remain largely unchanged, and they sound pretty good.
We recommend only turning ANC on when you’re somewhere like on a plane. The frequency response is much better without ANC, and while it will require using the app, we think it’s worth it.
The noise cancellation itself is decent. It won’t break any records or create as eerie of a sensation as the Bose QuietComfort 35, but it serves its purpose fine in most situations.
The JBL Everest Elite 750NC headphones connect to your listening device through Bluetooth 4.0, so they’ll get a pretty standard connection distance of up to 10 meters or 33 feet. We didn’t have too many issues without pushing it in distance and with multiple obstacles.
The battery life sits in at 15 hours with adaptive noise cancelling on, or 20 hours in wireless-only mode. That’s plenty of juice for most uses, and while it may not break any records, if you’re good at keeping your devices charged up you shouldn’t have any major issues.
The JBL Everest Elite 750NC headphones are quite good, but they’re a little unruly. They’re well-designed and quite comfortable, but the sound is very hit and miss when ANC is activated. As we said, we recommend only using ANC when necessary, and not buying these if you plan on using noise cancellation all the time.
JBL has some serious competition here — the aforementioned Bose QuietComfort 35’s. Ultimately, the Bose QuietComfort 35’s are better headphones — but they’re $50 more expensive. If you can swing the extra $50 we recommend it.
If, however, $300 is your price limit, these are an excellent pair of headphones, and there isn’t necessarily anything better for the same price. That’s earned the JBL Everest Elite 750NC headphones the Headphone Review Bronze Medal.
|10Hz – 22kHz
|Active noise cancellation
|Total harmonic distortion
|Rated input power
|15 hours with adaptive noise cancelling, 20 without
|Maximum input power
|Blue, black, silver