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Skullcandy Jib Plus wireless review: Jack of some trades, master of none

by Ankit Chawla

Skullcandy is an audio brand that has established itself as a premium name in the budget to mid-range headphone market in India. This was mostly owed to a premium design language and superior audio quality in the past decade or so. However, things have changed since its days of popularity. Smartphone brands like Xiaomi, OnePlus, and lately, Realme, have taken over the segment, branding their audio range alongside their smartphones. In an attempt to take on competition, Skullcandy recently launched the JIB+ wireless earbuds in India. This is a pair of no-frills wireless earphones targeted towards sports headphone users. We tried out the JIB+ for a couple of weeks, and here is our review of the same.

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First things first, the box of the Skullcandy JIB+ is pretty minimal, similar to what competition offers. You slide out to reveal the pair of earphones itself, alongside some different-sized eartips and a USB to Micro-USB charging cable. The Jib+ has a fairly long cable, which is about 2 feet in length. Skullcandy has attempted to create a neckband too, but one that isn't quite sturdy and secure.

On first appearance, even the buttons on the JIB+'s cable appear flimsy but have a rather subtle matte finish going for them. The earbuds, themselves, are quite compact, and pretty secure for running and strength training. Although you can choose the size of your eartip, we found the default size to be comfortable for our needs.

Talking about the controls on the Skullcandy JIB+, everything is mostly basic and functional; something you would expect from a sub-Rs 2,500 pair of wireless earphones. You have volume controls and a button to switch on/off, manage calls, and play/pause music. There is also a Micro-USB charging port with a cover to protect dust from entering. Once again, these buttons are flimsy to click and the quality could have been much better at this price point.

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The audio quality for the Skullcandy JIB+ is pretty decent when it comes to listening to music and streaming movies and TV shows online. It handles mids and trebles quite decently, while bass performance could have been improved. It isn't lacking, however, earphones on the more affordable side of the spectrum are usually high on bass. The 9mm drivers fitted into each earbud managed to handle different genres like rock, pop, EDM, and even classical. The maximum volume could have been a tad bit higher.

Call performance is where the Skullcandy JIB+ couldn't impress at all. Switching from music to calls on the pair of earphones is a drastic downgrade as you can barely hear the other person even with maximum volume. The audio quality also goes for a toss as you are left scrambling to switch off Bluetooth and move to the earpiece of your smartphone.

While the design and strap comfort is questionable, the JIB+ is durable enough for sports and other outdoor activities. It takes some time getting used to, but once you find the perfect fit, it stays snugly in your ears. The two-pronged battery and controls hinder during your runs, which could be frustrating for some.

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As for battery life, the Skullcandy JIB+ promises 6 hours of juice on one full charge. It does manage to deliver right about that amount, which is below par what the competition offers. In case you are looking for a pair that offers battery that lasts you about a week with regular usage, you might be better off looking elsewhere.

The Skullcandy JIB+ is an upgrade to the previous-gen JIB, but doesn't offer much in terms of improvement. Sure, the build quality is slightly more better and audio quality more refined, but even the upgrade doesn't keep up with competition. If you aren't conscious about the Skullcandy brand, you should probably look at other options like the Realme Buds Wireless or even the JBL T205BT Pure Bass.

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