JVC may not be a go-to name in headphones land, but the company’s been churning pairs out at a decent pace for years and some have been very good. These, the JVC HA-ET50BT’s aren’t going to set the world alight, though.
Not that effort hasn’t been made; £55 is a good price for Bluetooth sport buds (these used to RRP at £80) and there are a couple of pretty interesting features here, such as magnetic earpieces that stick together and dangle under your neck when you’re not listening, making the JVCs a little less loseable than most in-ear headphones.
Battery life, at up to nine hours, is also great for a set without a neck band or separate battery pack. And you don’t have to buy them in the fluorescent shade shown above - there are subtler shades available.
The so-called Pivot Motion Fit system doesn’t work well for all ears, though. This silicone ear hook nestles into the labyrinth of your ear cartilage to prevent the ‘phones falling out at the first knock but, while better than the standard buds of a normal pair of in-ears, the Monster iSport Victory earphones are much more secure. It all depends on the shape and size of your ears, but the JVCs seem fussier than most. If you are lucky enough to get a secure fit, you’ll also find the JVCs are very comfortable.
The JVC HA-ET50BT sound works well for an exercise earphone, with zero harshness, plenty of bonus bass and respectable mid-range and treble detail. An extra dose of subtlety and nuance would significantly improve the sound, though.
It’s all about where the bass boost sits in the frequency range. The JVC HA-ET50BT’s is higher than some, meaning it bleeds into the mids and eats up some of the space and separation in the sound. The sound isn’t as wide as some either.
The JVCs have one or two cool features, but the sound and fit could be better
JVC HA-ET50BT tech specs
Bluetooth: yes • Battery life: 9 hours • Mic: yes • Remote: yes • Sweat/water-resistant: sweat • Weight: 17g