Jabra branded headsets have been popular for a very long time the world over. They manufacture and distribute a full line of leading wired and wireless headsets globally through their various channels.
Though they’re currently ranked number two in the world behind the titan of telecom headsets, Plantronics, now called Poly, Jabra is gaining on them with new product introductions and lead edge technology that sees them gaining on their rival in a big way.
So if you find yourself in need of a wireless USB headset for your new favorite application, Zoom, or you could be someone who lives on RingCentral using their Softphone application that has you slammed all day with customer calls. Whatever your need for a USB headset, Jabra has products well worth your consideration.
In this blog, I’ll compare two generations of the same headset, the Jabra Evolve 65 to the Jabra Evolve2 65. I’ll cover the main features of these two popular models that can help you to better understand how they’re similar, and how they’re not.
But, before I get started, I did want to let you know that I did a Youtube video on this same product comparison. In this video, I also do a microphone sound test. I tested both to see how they sounded and compared, as well as how they both did to remove unwanted background noise.
If you’re like a lot of people who prefer to consume their content via video rather than through reading, then you’ll want to check out this comparison video below.
For everyone else, let’s continue on a roll through this Jabra USB wireless headset comparison.
As of this date, both are available to purchase so you might find this product comparison helpful in case you’ve narrowed your search to the Evolve 65 model.
The Jabra Evolve 65 looks perfectly fine, but when you compare it against the updated Evolve2 65, you can quickly see the improvements that were made on the new iteration in the overall appearance.
The Jabra Evolve 65 appearance looks a bit dated with the red striping and steel accents. Today’s designs have steered more towards a uniform appearance with black being the color of choice which is seen on the Evolve2 65 model.
For my personal taste, I like the Evolve2 65 which looks far better than the Evolve 65. It has a far more contemporary look and being all blacked out makes it look pretty cool overall.
The Jabra Evolve 65 weighs approximately 4.0 ounces
The Jabra Evolve2 65 weighs a little over 6 ounces
Given that these are both worn over the head, covering two ears, the weight of both models seems well distributed across the top of the head. I personally couldn’t really tell much difference in weight by wearing them both even though the specifications show the Evolve2 65 weighing 33% more.
That’s my sense of it, but yours might be different, hard to say. Overall, I’d say they feel about the same.
The Jabra Evolve 65 and the Evolve2 65 both connect to computer and mobile devices. This is accomplished wirelessly via the included USB dongle and through Bluetooth connectivity.
If connecting to a computer and having the ability to connect to mobile devices is critically important to you, both of these wireless headsets can do the job.
The Jabra Evolve 65 uses Bluetooth 4.0
The Jabra Evolve2 65 uses a new version, 5.0
So what’s the difference? As far as I can tell, version 5.0 is designed to give you longer wireless talk range. However, when you read the specifications on both products, each
claim up to 100 feet of wireless talk range. Yet a quick Google search about the difference between 4.0 and 5.0 says longer wireless talk range. I figure the newer, 5.0 version should give longer range, but that’s just my opinion.
Having longer wireless range can be helpful in a variety of ways. Maybe that much needed second cup of coffee is just out of your wireless range as you’re on that call. Sorry. Maybe you need to ask a coworker a quick question. If they sit within your wireless range, you’re in business. Well, you get the idea.
The Jabra Evolve 65 has a rechargeable battery rated at up to 14 hours of talk time The recharge time on the Evolve 65 battery is 2 hours
The Jabra Evolve2 65 has a rechargeable battery rated up to 35 hours of talk time. Evolve2 65 battery if using the busy light reduces the talk time to 24 hours If listening to music, you can get up to 37 hours
Recharge time is 1.5 hours
40% charge after 30 minutes on the charger
80% charge after 60 minutes on the charger
Clearly the battery in the Evolve2 65 is superior because it provides dramatically more strength over the earlier model.
The Jabra Evolve 65 has a single microphone that’s noise cancelling. The Jabra Evolve2 65 has a 3 microphone array that’s also noise cancelling.
On the surface you’d likely come to the quick conclusion that the Evolve2 65 microphone is better, right? You’d be right with that assessment. In the video I compared both microphones for sound quality and their ability to eliminate unwanted background noise.
Both models did a great job to reduce that background noise but the Evolve2 65 microphone had a much richer overall sound. If sound quality is high on your list, then hands down, the Evolve2 65 is the one for you. It has a deeper, richer tone while the Evolve 65 had a more treble sound that was lacking in the deeper, richer bass tones. The sound I’m referring to here are those that your callers will hear.
The microphone boom arm on the Evolve 65 is longer than the one on the Evolve2 65. I personally like the shorter boom as it keeps the microphone alongside my cheek and not beyond. It just seems to be a better size.
The Microphone boom arm on the Evolve 65 stows against the side of the headband when it’s not needed. The concept is interesting and maybe even useful, but in daily use, it really doesn’t stay put.
That’s not to say that it gets in the way because it doesn’t. It does stay in the upward position, it just doesn’t stay magnetically attached to the headband very well as it was originally intended to do. No big deal really, but worth noting giving that this is an advertised feature on this model.
While on the subject of microphone booms, the Evolve2 65 not only has a shorter one but when you raise it up it automatically mutes the microphone. When you return it down, it automatically turns the microphone back on. A very cool feature really, and useful in real work applications.
Ear speakers and cushions
I personally found the Jabra Evolve 65 ear cushions to be a little bit smaller than I’d like. I also found the ear cushions to lack in padding. In fact, the longer I wore the headset the more I could feel the hard plastic speaker housing beneath the cushion. I’d imagine wearing this headset for extended periods of time would lead to discomfort.
I also noticed that the angle of the ear speakers themselves are tilted inwards towards the bottom of the speaker itself. I found the angle of the speakers to be uncomfortable, as it had a tendency to press uncomfortably against my lower ear area. Overall, not the
most comfortable feeling ear cushion I’ve ever experienced. It wasn’t horrible, but it was far from great.
While on the subject of ear speakers, the Evolve 65 model has a history of breakage where the ear speaker attaches to the headband. We’ve seen this first hand in our office a lot. Fortunately though, Jabra corrected this in the new Evolve2 version. They completely re engineered this area, along with pretty much everything else to provide a new, and truly improved version of the Evolve 65 headset.
The headband on the Jabra Evolve 65 is adjustable, but not padded.
The headband on the Jabra Evolve2 65 is also adjustable, but it has a generous amount of silicone padding. This not only makes the headset comparatively more comfortable, but being it’s silicone it’s easy to keep clean. If you were given a choice of two headbands, one with a cushion, and one without, which would you choose? Did you answer cushioned? I’m sure most people would, as would I.
Both models have a built in busy light to let others around you know when you’re on a call. However, there are differences between these two models in terms of the design of the busy light.
The Jabra Evolve 65 has a circular ring on the side of the headset earpiece that lights up red when you get on a call. In order to see this red ring, you need to be within a certain field of view. If outside of the viewing area, you won’t be able to see if the person is on a call or not.
The Jabra Evolve2 65, by contrast, has LED lights on the front portion of the headset earpiece,and also on the back.
This provides a wider field of view for those around you to see if you’re busy and on a call. My sense is if Jabra felt that the original design was better, it would have stayed with it.
There are reasons why they changed the design to two position mounted LED lights. I think it was not only for a more updated look, but also helped to expand the viewing area. My preference is for the new design.
Active Noise Cancellation (ANC)
What is ANC? This is an electronic aid that assists in reducing the amount of distracting room noise. In other words, when you have a headset that has ANC, and the office noise gets distracting, simply press a button on the headset, and you’ll notice an immediate drop in the sound levels.
This feature is designed to allow you to stay focused on your work and not get distracted. Distractions, according to research, is the leading cause of reduced worker productivity. Additionally, it suggests that it can take as long as 20 minutes to regain focus. Needless to say, keeping a lid on the noise level, however you do it, makes sense.
Neither of these two Jabra Evolve 65 models have ANC. They both revert to what’s referred to as “passive noise cancellation”. What is passive noise cancellation you ask? Passive noise cancellation relies on hard surfaces and materials to refract sound so that it doesn’t penetrate your ear.
In this case, it would be the hard plastic ear speaker housing (outside portion) that protects your ear from noise from your environment. In a general sense, the bigger the better, at least to a degree. If the ear cups are too small, it won’t help much to refract sound. If the ear cups fully cover the ear, even better.
The second area to look at is the ear cushion itself. Foam is porous, and tends to allow sound to enter. Leather cushions are a more dense material that helps to reduce sound.
Between the Jabra Evolve 65 and the Evolve2 65, the Evolbve2 65 has larger, more generously padded ear cushions. As such, I’d give this model a thumbs up advantage over the previous model.
Both models come with a Jabra 2-year warranty. No difference here.
The Jabra Evolve 65 has been a solid performing headset in the Jabra product line for quite a while. However, like with any product, it’s bound to be replaced by a new and improved model sooner or later.
That happened in a big way with the introduction of the Evolve2 65. Yes, it represents the next generation, but Jabra did a spectacular job of improving on an already good headset.
- Shorter mic boom that auto mutes when raised
- Padded headband for more comfort
- Thicker and larger ear cushions for better sound blockage and more comfort.
- Wider field of view on the busy light*
- A battery that gives you over double the strength of the original
- Updated Bluetooth technology that may provide longer wireless talk range
- A far better sounding headset that’s more comfortable overall
If it were me making the choice between these two models, hands down I’d be buying the Evolve2 65. You might have a different opinion, but based on the wide range of product improvements Jabra made on this new model, I find them meaningful and certainly enough to make this decision an easy one.