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Jabra brings affordability to durability

Jabra’s Elite 4 Active make excellent earphones for those who want to work out with music, writes AYANDA TSHABALALA

What is it?

As wireless earphones become more commonplace, differentiating factors need to come into play. The bud market is quite a wide one, with the more dominant brands like Apple, Samsung, and Sony competing aggressively. Jabra is quickly becoming popular, thanks to two features: affordability and durability. Most consumers are now opting for wireless earbuds because of their convenience and neat aesthetic, but is that enough to stand out?

The Jabra Elite 4 Active earphones are water- and sweat-resistant, which helps to keep them safe and in place during a workout and enhances their durability. They also come with a 2-year warranty. 

Although the active noise cancellation function is sought by consumers, Jabra enhances the safety of the users by having the opposite: the ‘hear-through’ function is important for public activities like walking, cycling and running, to hear the traffic behind and ahead of you.

The sound on the Elite 4 Active is exceptional, although calls may produce a muffled sound here and there. They come with four built-in microphones, which are protected by a mesh that protects one from wind noise ensuring, that they will be heard clearly during calls. 

In 2021, Jabra set a new standard for affordable wireless earbuds with the Elite 3, which focused on getting the basics of wireless audio into the ears of consumers. The company has not differentiated its mid-range option with Elite 4 Active, a model that focuses heavily on exercise, full of active noise cancellation (ANC), and adequate moisture protection in highly sweaty sessions. Jabra does not only want to make its real wireless system compelling in terms of features and functionality, but also to make the price more competitive. This model retails for R2,199, and offers many of the options we often see on earbuds that go for almost double the amount.

The seamless look and design of the earbuds are what define it. The earbuds on the 4 are also smaller than the 3. Although the charging case is a little bigger than that of the Elite 7, it can still fit comfortably in a pocket. Jabra says one can expect up to seven hours of battery life on Elite 4 Active, with three additional charges in the case, for up to 28 hours. Our tests matched this with music but, as with all earbuds, got less battery life from having long calls and using the microphone.

The Jabra Elite 4 shows that you do not need to spend an arm and a leg to enjoy quality wireless earbuds. Jabra is offering solid mid-range specs at the same price as some companies’ high-end models.


  • The controls are tricky to use on the buds.
  • It does not offer wireless charging.
  • The noise cancellation can be improved to completely cancel out noise.
  • The on-bud buttons should allow a skip and reverse function.


  • It’s affordable.
  • The sound quality is good, with options to customise it on the Jabra sound app.
  • They are comfortable in comparison to their predecessor.
  • The battery life (for music, audiobooks, and podcasts) is impressive.
  • Offers noise cancellation and the ability to ‘hear through’.

To find out more about Jabra’s advanced range, click here:

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