Review: JBL Club Pro+ TWS offer great audio and features, but not a lot of comfort

Review: JBL Club Pro+ TWS offer great audio and features, but not a lot of comfort.
The "unibody design inspired by professional in-ear monitors", according to manufacturers. Photo credit: Newshub.

The newest premium in-ear headphones from American audio company JBL are out in New Zealand.

They come with the word "club" in their name and a sort of DJ theme, with an app that offers presets created by "the world's top DJs".

But how good do they sound and how convenient are they to use?

I've been using a set of JBL Club Pro+ TWS earbuds for the past few weeks and here are my thoughts.

The good

The most important aspect of almost any audio product is the audio quality and these sound great.

You definitely want to install the app and muck around with the settings a bit to get it sounding as good as possible, but after you have, expect a lovely, crisp, balanced sound.

JBL Club Pro+ TWS true wireless ANC earbuds and charging case.
Photo credit: Newshub.

The only earbuds I've used that I reckon have better audio quality are from Sennheiser, but they cost quite a bit more than the JBL equivalent.

Tech specs:

  • Driver sensitivity at 1kHz/1mW (dB): 102
  • Dynamic frequency response range (Hz): 10 Hz – 20 kHz
  • Impedance (ohms): 16

They offer adaptive noise-cancelling (ANC) which is good but not great. It muffles the noise around you but isn't as effective as a lot of other ANC products.

What is great is the clarity of phone conversations using the Club Pro+. I used them on a windy day and neither me nor the person I was talking to over them had any issues hearing each other. JBL has put multiple mics into each bud to achieve this and the results are great.

The touch controls are nice and responsive and can be easily customised through the companion app.

There's a bunch of convenience features here that'll please a lot of people - wireless charging, voice assistant compatibility, IPX4 sweat and water resistance, fast charging and so on.

2021 JBL Club Pro Plus TWS review - the good and the bad.
Photo credit: Newshub.

You get about six hours of use on one charge with the ANC on, plus another 18 using the charging case before you need to charge that.

Plugging in for 10 minutes will give you another hour of charge though, which is nice when you're in a rush.

The bad

For me, the worst thing about the Club Pro+ is that they're just not very comfortable.

It's hard to say whether it's just the shape of my ear canal or not, but compared to loads of other earbuds, these are definitely some of the most awkward to wear. 

Although they're bulky, they're not the bulkiest I've used - but something about the shape just means they're hard to get both sounding right and feeling right at the same time.

Although these earbuds have a lot of features that competitor products don't, they're also lacking some. The main one I noticed missing is multi-device pairing, which can be very handy.

Although the settings are supposed to offer presets from "the world's top DJs", my app only presented one DJ's preset and it wasn't very good. Setting it to automatically adjust and "optimise for music" got a better result.

Newshub reviews JBL Club Pro+ TWS earbuds in-ear headphones.
Photo credit: Newshub.

The verdict

This item is launching in New Zealand with an RRP of just under $350.

For that price, these are great sounding earbuds that offer a nice set of features. You could get even an even better sounding competitor product, possibly with more features, but that would definitely mean coughing up extra cash.

It's hard to try-before-you-buy with these products due to hygiene reasons, but beware the uncomfortableness I felt with these. Perhaps carefully examine close-up photos of how their shape differs from other earbuds to get an idea.

If they feel good for you, you're in luck - they're a solid all-round product.

Newshub was supplied a set of JBL Club Pro+ TWS earbuds for this review