JBL Synchros Reflect BT

4.3
4.3 score
(TheGearHunt) score (4.3)/10

Our TheGearHunt score is based on 3 different factors: Editor's rating after in-depth testing. User ratings submitted on this page Overall score from the "reviewmeter" based on reviews across the web the weight of each factor is: 40% editor rating 15% user ratings 45% reviewmeter.
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Editor rating: 5.0 / 10
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JBL Synchros Reflect BT Review Facts

JBL is among the biggest the biggest manufacturers of audio for both professionals and consumers. Their venture into the wireless earbud world has been a bit problematic. Each pair seems to have an issue that keeps it from being a fantastic product and causes mixed reviews.

Lots of things slow down a workout. Music doesn’t have to slow down activity. Most runners enjoy listening to music when they run. The beat of favorite songs help as a distraction from overthinking breathing or from daily stress, and to keep rhythm. A cord is not necessary to connect the wireless headphones to a phone.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Customizable tether
  • Reflective strip
  • One-touch operation
Cons
  • Eartip fit is tricky
  • Mixed sound quality reviews
  • Poor battery life
Activities

Activities

Users can bike, climb, walk, or run unimpeded by dangling cables. Heart pounding JBL sound keeps the user moving with punchy bass and precise detail. The Synchros Reflect BT can be worn for gym workouts, daily runs, or running errands. They are not recommended for long runs, because the battery may only last about two hours.
Basic Features

Basic Features

There are many types and models of Bluetooth headphones. Each has a set of features based on its purpose and usage. The basic features include the wireless range, sound reduction feature, digital signaling process, LCD feature, menu control, mono and binaural models, and microphone. Not all Bluetooth earbuds have all the features.

The package includes in-ear Bluetooth earphones; 24-inch connecting cable; three-button remote/mic; a pair of each small, medium, and large sport eartips; 23-inch USB cable (Micro USB on one end and Type A USB on the other), Quick Start Guide, QSG correction statement, safety warning sheet; IC and FCC statement; and warranty card.

To be a Bluetooth headphone, it must be wireless. It can connect to the device at a 30-foot range. The Synchros Reflect BT has a 40-foot range. The sound reduction feature is the wind resistant microphone that makes calls clear.

It is a binaural model, meaning there are earpieces for both ears. The microphone for this headset is described as boomless. That means it doesn’t look like the old-style models that arch toward the mouth, the kind a phone operator uses. Boomless microphones are found on an earpiece and are unnoticeable.
Advanced Features

Advanced Features

Some cool design features that set the JBL Synchros Reflect BT apart from other models using Bluetooth include magnetic earpieces and a retractable tether. Clasp the earpieces together so that they hang around the neck when removing the headphones or take a water break. There is no risk of setting them down and losing them. The retractable tether allows adjusting the cord length that connects the earpieces.

The name for the headphones was derived from the reflective cord connecting the earbuds. The strip reflects light when it is dark which makes the earbuds an excellent choice for night running. It seems like a ‘no-brainer’ feature that is surprisingly missing from other brands. The two magnetic cords tie up the excess cable to fit perfectly around the neck which is another elegant solution other companies should adopt.
Sound Quality

Sound Quality

Headphone sound quality is a measurement of enjoyability and accuracy. There is no absolute sound quality reference. It is a matter of user taste. The most objective accuracy of audio quality is measured using tools. Enjoyability is entirely subjective.

The most common categories of audio quality are bass, V-shaped, and flat. Bass has a robust and heavy emphasis on low range. V-shaped emphasizes treble and bass for a dynamic and lively sound, and the flat has neutral and balanced sound in which all frequencies are equal.

Sound quality depends on who is asked. Some think the JBL quality sound is groundbreaking. The dual 8.5mm drivers deliver clear vocals and thumping bass for the ultimate ’pump you up’ track. The JBL Synchros Reflect BT is the ultimate workout partner.

Quality sound and a secure fit provide peace of mind that can make a difference between pushing the limit and merely working out. With the JBL quality sound and five hours of Bluetooth wireless connectivity, the user can dig deep and push hard.

Not all users agree. Some think it falls below the mark in sound quality because there is a sense of confusion and discomfort when in a slightly crowded soundscape. Even those testers had some good things to say about the earbuds. Lower end earbuds do not have the same amount of frequency clarity as the JBL Synchros Reflect BT.

For what BJL is trying to accomplish, the 8.5mm driver is too small. Low-end falls drown out top-end sounds making the earbuds sound dull. There is no heavy bass either which means there is little low-end punch.

Low-end boosts that reach into the mids a little make the sound cluttered. The headset lacks low-end punch and clarity. Many users are not interested in audio quality. Some find the intense deep bass as a motivator while it annoys audio purists.
Connectivity

Connectivity

Audio and music are streamed with a Bluetooth connection from a smartphone to the headphones. The line of sight provided by the Bluetooth ranges to a distance of 40 feet from the device. The phone can be placed somewhere other than strapped to the arm.

The most current version is 4.1. The slightly older version provides similar performance. The built-in Bluetooth provides freedom from wires and as much as five hours of soundtracks. Tracks are easily controlled, and volume monitored while the smartphone is in a gym bag 40 feet away.

The cable management system has some serious attraction. It has built-in magnets that keep the buds on stand by when they are not being used. Wrap them around the neck. They clip together. There are no loose cables. The benefit of wireless earbuds is convenience. The universal remote control/microphone provides peace of mind, convenience, and connectivity. Wireless technology is only as good as the connectivity.

There are some obstacles a Bluetooth connection has to overcome. The earbuds receive a Bluetooth signal from a phone through a 2.4GHz wavelength. The transfer path makes the phone a transmitter and the earbud the receiver.

One earbud is designated as the primary receiver. The other is the secondary receiver. Distance impacts the signal. Air is a factor in degrading connection quality. The user’s body serves as an impediment also. The connection is dubious on city sidewalks and places like the subway or gym where there is too much signal interference.
Comfort

Comfort

Comfort is an area that receives mixed reviews. The earbuds for one tester are comfortable and above par when compared to many other pairs. They fit nicely in the ears. There is only one option and a huge variation in the size of ears which could lead to constantly falling earbuds or potential irritation.

There is a lack of customization. The small and large options included in the package do not fit well in mid-sized ears. Though they are made of plastic, they do not feel as though they will break by closing the fingers together which is a positive feature. Not having wires that flop around or snag on everybody and everything automatically makes them more comfortable than headphones that are not wireless.
Style

Style

The design is an area in which the Synchros Reflect BT shines. Comfortable winged ear tips, fantastic Bluetooth connectivity, and a clever cable in between the headphones make for an excellent design. The reflective cable connecting the earpieces has a three-button remote designed for an iPod or iPhone. It can be used to play and pause music, skip songs, and adjust the volume. A tiny built-in microphone allows hands-free calls.

Its reflective colored cord distinctively lights the way for visibility at night. The unique tether design permits a customizable fit. The rugged, ready of anything design is sweat proof and delivers legendary JBL sound with no compromise. The earbuds come in red, green, blue, and black. Those who like color coordination are sure to find a color they want.
Durability

Durability

No need to be afraid of a bit of moisture because the earpieces are sweat proof. There is no excuse for giving up the final few reps or last lap. Safety issues are addressed with the Reflect BT sweat proof cable that provides low light visibility that is ideal for night time runners.

The retractable tether permits the cord length to be customized. Angled earpieces and ergonomic ear tips are designed to stay in the ears regardless of what they are made to endure. The rugged inline controls adjust volume, control tracks, and take calls.

The Synchros Reflect BT is a solidly designed and constructed set of earbuds. They can offer the first class performance that has come to be expected from JBL. It was designed for people who workout in mind.
Ease of Use

Ease of Use

The inline microphone is a plus. It grants one-touch operation to answer calls and adjust volume is the charge allows. It is easy to operate while jogging. When the earpieces are in, they stay in place. One tester described the process as pressing the ear tips into the canals with force, then twisting with more force to create a seal. After fiddling with the earpieces to make them fit, they stay in place nicely.

After multiple times, the process is likely to become routine. The Reflect needs a bit more effort to create a proper seal than most earphones. The tricky earpiece installation and less than promised battery life affect the ease of use.
Power Source

Power Source

The built-in rechargeable battery is supposed to provide as much as five hours of playback. It can be refueled through the Micro USB cable that is included. Though the headphones are rated for five hours of playback time, testers have found they fall incredibly short of five hours, saying a couple of hours is all that can be squeezed out of a charge. That is an issue of concern for those who run at night.

The charging cable for the JBL Synchros Reflect BT is a ReadyPlug product. It is an extra short data transfer cable. The cable provides charging and fast data transfer from any USB port. It transfers for devices in sync with USB.

The cable transmits data at 480 Mbp. The USB cable supports hot-plugging. It has a Lifetime Manufacturer Warranty. The cable provides power, file transfer, and data while charging. It can be used with 1.0, 1.1, and 2.0 USB.

It has solid Molded Boot ends for durability and stress relief. The cable has braided shielding and inner Foil to lower EMI/RFI interference. The twisted-pair composition also reduces in-cable interference. The combination ensures maximum power charging and reliable, high-speed transfer.
Price

Price

The headphones have inline controls, minor sweat proofing, and convenient features, but evaluators do not think the features justify the cost. The headphones are exercised focused and are sold for less than the MSRP of $100 by many retailers.
Key Features

Key Features

* A2DP and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity for wireless phone calls and music listening with compatible smartphones
* Bright reflective cord having a retractable tether for customizing length connected to earpieces
* Built-in mic to make calls with iPhone
* Each earpiece has an 8.5mm dynamic driver
* Magnetic earpieces connect to wear to wear around the neck when not being used
* One-year warranty
* Sweatproof
* Three-button remote for volume and music playback control with an iPod, iPad, or iPhone
* Three pairs of silicone tips that ensure proper noise isolation and comfortable fit
Bottom Line

Bottom Line

The JBL Synchros Reflect is an interesting product. It has features that are not found on other earbuds such as competent build quality, a magnetic cable management system, and a reflective strip. The inconsistent audio performance and battery life make it hard to appreciate.

JBL is capable of making fantastic products. This pair of headphones is an exception to the usual quality. They are a solid option for those who run at night. The magnetic cable management bars and the reflective strip have testers scratching their heads while wondering why other brands do not offer the features. They provide convenience and safety in an intuitively simple package. The reflective design keeps the user visible at night when biking or running. It makes the users visible to other joggers, bikers, and drivers.