JVC recently released a new pair of Bluetooth headphones, and we’re pleasantly surprised at how they’ve turned out. While JVC’s headphones have always been affordable, our experience with their sound quality has been, well … hit or miss. And to be frank, JVC’s description of the XX Elation’s “club sound” did little to assuage our concerns. However, we’re pleased to report that this $150 pair of wireless cans (lingering around $100 online) sounds surprisingly well balanced, and if you crave a boost in bass, that’s available too.
The XX Elation Bluetooth don’t look particularly premium — their plastic-y construction has a slightly cheap vibe to it — but don’t let appearances fool you; these headphones are well constructed and remarkably resilient. Twist the headband all you like, it’ll snap right back into place.
That pliable plastic also makes for a headphone light enough that you might just forget you’re wearing them. Thanks to a reasonable amount of clamping force, though, the Elation will stay in place.
Battery life is estimated at a respectable 10 hours, depending on volume, but if you should find yourself without power, an included iPhone-compatible 3.5 mm cable is included. That’s it for accessories, though. While the Elation will fold down for travel, no travel case or sack is provided in the package.
As indicated earlier, we were pleased to discover the Elation offer a fairly well-balanced sound capable of delivering more inner detail than we’d expected. Bass isn’t overwhelming, unless you engage the optional bass boost, and vocals are rendered with respectable clarity. Overall, the sound signature here is a little on the thick side, but a gently sparkling top end balances things out nicely.
Bluetooth headphones under the $100 mark are often dodgy — the Jabra Move being a rare exception — but the XX Elation prove that going wirelesss on the cheap doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice sound quality and features. With solid battery life, great sound, and a little extra bass when you need it, these inexpensive, resilient Bluetooth cans are a rock-solid bet.