Get insider access
Preferred headphones store

Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.4
Reviewed Sep 21, 2020 at 08:33 am
Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless Picture
7.4
Mixed Usage
6.9
Neutral Sound
7.7
Commute/Travel
7.4
Sports/Fitness
7.6
Office
6.9
Wireless Gaming
7.8
Wired Gaming
7.9
Phone Calls
Type Over-ear
Enclosure Closed-Back
Wireless Yes
Noise Cancelling Yes
Mic Yes
Transducer Dynamic

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are versatile professional headphones. They're comfortable, well-built, and have excellent battery performance, not to mention a highly customizable user experience courtesy of their feature-packed companion app. Their boom mic makes your voice sound clear, natural, and mostly free of background noise. Meanwhile, their ANC system allows you to stay focused on what's being said on a conference call, even when you're in a loud environment. Their control scheme is also very easy to use, which is handy for when you're on the go but don't want to miss any important calls. Unfortunately, they have high wireless latency and a fairly bulky design, which makes them a little bit of a nuisance to carry around.

Our Verdict

7.4 Mixed Usage

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are decent for mixed usage. They look and feel premium, with sturdy construction and comfortable fit. They have excellent battery performance as well as a high-quality boom microphone that makes your voice sound natural and mostly clear of background noise. Unfortunately, they're quite bulky, have high wireless latency, and don't support microphone compatibility when used with a wired connection.

Pros
  • Comfortable fit.
  • Well-balanced default sound profile.
  • Premium build quality.
Cons
  • High wireless latency.
  • No microphone compatibility when using a wired connection.
  • Bulky design.
6.9 Neutral Sound

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are okay for neutral sound. They have a fairly well-balanced sound profile out-of-the-box that's versatile enough for all sorts of audio content. You can also adjust their sound profile via presets or an EQ in their companion app. Unfortunately, they provide a somewhat inconsistent listening experience, a closed-off soundstage, and mediocre stereo imaging performance.

Pros
  • Comfortable fit.
  • Well-balanced default sound profile.
Cons
  • Closed-off soundstage.
  • Mediocre stereo imaging performance.
7.7 Commute/Travel

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are good for commuting and traveling. Their ANC system might struggle to reduce the low rumble of bus engines, but it should be quite effective in filtering out the chatter of other commuters. They're very comfortable and deliver amazing battery life, so you should have no trouble wearing them throughout long cross-country flights or long train rides.

Pros
  • Comfortable fit.
  • Intuitive control scheme.
  • Good noise isolation performance.
Cons
  • Bulky design.
7.4 Sports/Fitness

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are decent for sports and fitness, despite not being intended for this kind of use. They have a comprehensive control scheme that's easy to use when you're on the move and feel sturdy enough to take a few minor drops and bumps. While they should stay on your head during light workouts, they might slip off with more intense movements, and they aren't especially portable either.

Pros
  • Intuitive control scheme.
Cons
  • Bulky design.
7.6 Office

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are good for office work. They have a very comfortable fit and enough battery life to get you through your 9 to 5 without an issue. Their ANC system is very effective in reducing the volume of ambient chatter, and they do a decent job of preventing audio from escaping their ear cups. They can also pair with two devices simultaneously, which is useful if you listen to content on both your phone and computer.

Pros
  • Comfortable fit.
  • Intuitive control scheme.
  • Feature-rich companion app with graphic EQ.
  • Good noise isolation performance.
Cons
  • High wireless latency.
  • No microphone compatibility when using a wired connection.
6.9 Wireless Gaming

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are acceptable for wireless gaming, though it should be noted that their audio latency is too high for them to be an ideal pick for this use. They also have no microphone support on consoles. That said, these headphones offer a well-balanced sound profile that's well-suited for a variety of games and a high-quality mic.

Pros
  • Boom microphone has good recording quality and noise handling capability.
Cons
  • High wireless latency.
7.8 Wired Gaming

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are very good for wired gaming, so long as you aren't planning on using a mic, as their included 1/8" TRS cable doesn't offer microphone support. They're comfortable enough to wear through long gaming sessions and have a well-balanced sound profile that ensures both in-game dialogue and sound effects are heard clearly.

Pros
  • Comfortable fit.
  • Well-balanced default sound profile.
Cons
  • No microphone compatibility when using a wired connection.
7.9 Phone Calls

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are very good for phone calls. Their boom microphone makes your voice sound natural, clear, and mostly free of background noise, so people on the other end of the line shouldn't have trouble understanding you. They also block out quite a bit of background noise with the ANC system, so you should be able to hear what's being said. Unfortunately, you can't use their microphone when using the included 1/8" TRS cable.

Pros
  • Boom microphone has good recording quality and noise handling capability.
  • Good noise isolation performance.
Cons
  • No microphone compatibility when using a wired connection.
  • 7.4 Mixed Usage
  • 6.9 Neutral Sound
  • 7.7 Commute/Travel
  • 7.4 Sports/Fitness
  • 7.6 Office
  • 6.9 Wireless Gaming
  • 7.8 Wired Gaming
  • 7.9 Phone Calls
  1. Update 10/19/2020: Updated the weight of the headphones.

Check Price

Stereo (USB-A) MT - No Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-A) MT - With Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-A) UC - No Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-A) UC - With Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-C) MT - No Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-C) MT - With Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-C) UC - No Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-C) UC - With Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are very similar in appearance to the Jabra Elite 85h Wireless, except for their flippable boom microphone. They're mostly made of premium-looking plastic and feature a monochrome color scheme that's available in either black or beige. Overall, they're understated and probably won't stand out in an office environment.

8.0
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.63 lbs
Clamping Force
0.9 lbs

Update 10/19/2020: The 'Weight' field has been updated to reflect the correct weight of the headphones.

These are very comfortable headphones. They feature generous amounts of soft padding on the ear cups and headband, so their weight is evenly distributed across your entire head. You should be able to wear them for extended periods without experiencing any fatigue.

8.1
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
Not OS specific
Ease Of Use Good
Feedback Good
Call/Music Control Yes
Volume Control Yes
Microphone Control Mute/Unmute
Channel Mixing
No
Noise Cancelling Control On/Off
Talk-Through
On/Off
Additional Controls Voice Assistant

These headphones have an impressively comprehensive and easy-to-use control scheme. The volume buttons also serve as playback controls, as you can hold the volume up button to skip forward and hold the volume down button to go backward. Holding both at the same time turns the busy light on to show that you're on a call. You can answer and reject calls via the multi-function button, which is also used to cycle through the ANC and talk-through functions. You can flip the mic up to mute it or press the voice button near the right hinge, which also turns on your phone's voice assistant when you're not on a call. Most button inputs come with audible voice prompts, so it's easy to know when you've made a command.

A Microsoft Teams-certified variant is available, which has a multi-function button that provides more functionality with that app, but we didn't test it.

6.4
Design
Portability
L 6.5 "
W 6.1 "
H 1.7 "
Volume 67 Cu. Inches
Transmitter Required No

The Jabra Evolve2 85's portability is acceptable. While they're somewhat bulky, they do fold into a more compact shape to reduce their footprint. Their microphone also swivels into a groove on the right ear cup, which reduces the chances of having it snag on something if you toss them into your bag.

8.0
Design
Case
Type Hard case
L 8.4 "
W 7.0 "
H 2.3 "
Volume N/A

These headphones come with a great zippered hard case made of faux leather. It's very similar to that of the Jabra Elite 85h Wireless and should protect them from drops, bumps, and minor water exposure.

7.5
Design
Build Quality

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are well-built. They feel quite sturdy, with a premium-looking silicone and high-grade plastic construction. The padding on the ear cups and headband is lined with faux leather. While they don't feel quite as premium as the Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless, they still feel fairly sturdy and should survive a couple of minor drops and bumps without an issue.

7.0
Design
Stability

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are decently stable. Any sudden shakes of the head may cause them to slip off your ears, but they should stay on with gentler movements. Since these are wireless headphones, there's little chance of having an audio cable snag on something and then having them pulled off your ears.

Design
Headshots 1
Design
Headshots 2
Design
Top
Design
In The Box

  • Jabra Evolve2 85 headphones
  • Hard case
  • 1/8" TRS cable
  • Airplane adapter
  • USB-A Bluetooth dongle
  • USB-C charging cable
  • Manual

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
-0.54 db
Treble Amount
0.19 db

These over-ears have a reasonably well-balanced sound profile overall. The bass is quite even, which should give mixes adequate thump and body. The mid response is quite neutral, which is important when talking over the phone, as speech should sound present, detailed, and clear. Unfortunately, the treble response is just a little uneven, which may make some voices sound a bit harsh. If you're the type who likes to fine-tune your listening experience, the Jabra Sound+ app features a five-band graphic EQ.

6.1
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.88 dB

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have mediocre frequency response consistency. Bass and treble response is quite sensitive to their fit and positioning, so if you have long hair or glasses, you may have trouble achieving a consistent listening experience.

Sound
Raw Frequency Response
7.7
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
3.18 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
10.91 Hz
Low-Bass
-2.89 dB
Mid-Bass
2.86 dB
High-Bass
3.9 dB

The Jabra Evolve2 85's bass accuracy is good. There's a slight dip in the low-bass range that may result in a little bit of missing thump, and a bump in the high-bass range that makes some mixes a little boomy. However, since their bass response is heavily dependent on their fit and positioning, your own experience may vary.

9.0
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
1.4 dB
Low-Mid
0.19 dB
Mid-Mid
-0.55 dB
High-Mid
-0.08 dB

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have excellent mid accuracy. It's very neutral across the entire range, resulting in full-bodied, present, and clear speech as well as vocals and lead instruments.

7.1
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
3.91 dB
Low-Treble
2.88 dB
Mid-Treble
2.43 dB
High-Treble
-3.27 dB

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have decent treble accuracy. The entire low-treble range and part of the mid-treble range is overemphasized, which can make some voices sound a little harsh and piercing. However, since the treble response is heavily dependent on their positioning and fit, your own experience may vary.

7.2
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
1.72 db
Dips
1.53 db

These headphones have satisfactory peaks and dips performance. A dip in the low-bass range makes some mixes lack a bit of thump and kick while the following extended bump creates a little boominess. The spike in the low-treble range makes some notes sound somewhat harsh, and the drop in the mid-treble range makes some voices sound dull.

6.1
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.2
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
0.62
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
2.36
Weighted Phase Mismatch
58.56

The Jabra Evolve2 85 deliver mediocre stereo imaging performance. Their weighted group delay falls beneath the audibility threshold, resulting in tight bass and transparent treble. The L/R drivers are also very well-matched in regards to amplitude response and have minor frequency response mismatch. However, there's a significant deviation in phase response. This has an impact on their ability to generate an accurate representation of the placement of objects in the stereo image. These results are only valid for our test unit, and yours may perform differently.

4.2
Sound
Passive Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
4.7 dB
PRTF Size (Avg.)
6.67 dB
PRTF Distance
5.04 dB
Openness
2.3
Acoustic Space Excitation
3.4

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have a poor passive soundstage. Like most closed-back headphones, they create a closed-off, unnatural soundstage that causes sound to be perceived as coming from the inside of your head rather than speakers placed in front of you.

0
Sound
Virtual Soundstage
Head Modeling
No
Speaker Modeling
No
Room Ambience
No
Head Tracking
No
Virtual Surround
No

These over-ears don't have any virtual soundstage features.

8.0
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.187
WHD @ 100
0.105

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have great weighted harmonic distortion performance. The entire frequency range falls within good limits, resulting in clean and pure audio reproduction.

Sound
Test Settings
Firmware
1.27.0(1033)
Power
On
Connection
Wireless (Proprietary)
Codec
SBC, 16-bit, 48kHz
EQ
Default
ANC
On
Tip/Pad
Default
Microphone
Boom

These are the settings used to evaluate the Jabra Evolve2 85. Our tests were completed using their proprietary USB-A wireless dongle. The results obtained are only valid when they're used in this configuration.

Isolation
7.7
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-22.41 dB
Bass
-8.71 dB
Mid
-24.04 dB
Treble
-36.05 dB

These headphones have good noise isolation performance. While their ANC system slightly struggles when it comes to reducing the volume of low-frequency ambient noise, like bus engines, they're quite effective when it comes to filtering out the chatter of nearby coworkers or the high-pitched hum of an AC unit.

7.0
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
39.39 dB

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have decent leakage performance. The bulk of escaping audio occurs mostly in the mid-range, so it should sound fairly full-bodied. If you listen to your music at really high volumes, people nearby may hear what you're listening to.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
Yes
In-Line
No
Boom
Yes
Detachable Boom
No

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have a boom microphone and an integrated microphone that you can switch between using in their companion app. However, the integrated mic's performance wasn't evaluated as expect users to use the boom mic.

7.9
Microphone
Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
LFE
207.49 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
1.79 dB
HFE
5046.6 Hz
Weighted THD
0.056
Gain
19.98 dB

The Jabra Evolve2 85's boom microphone has very good recording quality. Your voice should sound natural and mostly distortion-free to people on the other end of the line.

8.1
Microphone
Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise
Speech + Subway Noise
SpNR
29.04 dB

The Jabra Evolve2 85's boom microphone delivers impressive noise handling capability. Even if you're making a call from a fairly loud environment, those on the other end of the line shouldn't have too much trouble understanding you.

Active Features
8.9
Active Features
Battery
Battery Type
Rechargable
Continuous Battery Life
31.7 hrs
Additional Charges
0.0
Total Battery Life
31.7 hrs
Charge Time
2.1 hrs
Power-Saving Feature
Standby mode
Audio While Charging
Yes
Passive Playback
Yes
Charging Port USB-C

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have excellent battery performance. They offer 31.7-hours of continuous battery life with ANC activated, which is outstanding. You can use them as they charge, so long as you're connected over Bluetooth or via their proprietary dongle. They have a standby timer that automatically turns them off during periods of inactivity, which can be adjusted in their companion app.

8.0
Active Features
App Support
App Name Jabra Sound+
iOS Yes
Android Yes
macOS No
Windows No
Equalizer
Graphic + Presets
ANC Control
On/Off
Mic Control Adjustable Level
Room Effects
No
Playback Control
No
Button Mapping No
Surround Support
No

The Jabra Evolve2 85's Jabra Sound+ companion app is great. It gives you access to audio presets, a five-band graphic EQ, microphone sidetone adjustment, and a menu to change the duration of their standby timer. You can also toggle their ANC system on and off, check their battery life, and update their firmware.

Connectivity
8.3
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
5.0
Multi-Device Pairing
2 Devices
NFC Pairing
No
Line Of Sight Range
335 ft
PC Latency (SBC)
234 ms
PC Latency (aptX)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX HD)
N/A
PC Latency (aptX-LL)
N/A
iOS Latency
249 ms
Android Latency
212 ms

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have great Bluetooth connectivity. They're Bluetooth 5.0-compatible and can pair with two devices simultaneously, which is handy if you tend to listen to content on both your phone and computer. Unfortunately, their latency across all platforms is a little too high to make them suitable for playing video games or streaming movies, though apps compensate differently, so your real-world experience may vary.

5.5
Connectivity
Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line Of Sight Range
243 ft
Non-BT Latency
287 ms

The Jabra Evolve2 85 come with a USB-A dongle that can be plugged into your computer to allow for quick and seamless device pairing. However, latency is slightly higher when using this dongle than when connected to a computer over traditional Bluetooth.

Another variant is available with a USB-C dongle that plugs into USB-C ports, but its performance wasn't evaluated.

9.5
Connectivity
Wired
Analog Audio
Yes
USB Audio
No
Detachable Yes
Length 4.1 ft
Connection 1/8" TRS
Analog/USB Audio Latency
0 ms

The Jabra Evolve2 85 come with a 1/8" TRS audio cable that allows for passive audio playback, but no microphone compatibility.

Connectivity
PC / PS4 Compatibility
PC/PS4 Analog
Audio Only
PC/PS4 Wired USB
No
PC/PS4 Non-BT Wireless
Audio + Microphone (PC Only)

The Jabra Evolve2 85 have full audio and microphone compatibility when you plug their proprietary USB-A dongle into a PC, but their audio latency is too high for them to be well-suited for gaming. On PS4 consoles, the USB dongle only receives audio and doesn't provide microphone compatibility.

Connectivity
Xbox One Compatibility
Xbox One Analog
Audio Only
Xbox One Wired USB
No
Xbox One Non-BT Wireless
No

You can only receive audio when you plug the Jabra Evolve2 85's 1/8" TRS audio cable into an Xbox One controller.

3.4
Connectivity
Base/Dock
Type
Wireless USB Dongle
USB Input
Yes
Line In
No
Line Out
No
Optical Input
No
RCA Input
No
Dock Charging
No
Power Supply
USB

The Jabra Evolve2 85 come with a proprietary Bluetooth 5.0 USB-A dongle that's paired with the headphones out-of-the-box. Another variant is available with a USB-C dongle, but we didn't get this variant. They can also be purchased with a charging base, but that dock represents an added cost.

Differences Between Sizes and Variants

The Jabra Evolve2 85 comes with a good selection of configuration options. You can select them with either built-in Microsoft Teams or Unified Communication (UC) optimization, a USB-A or USB-C wireless dongle, and purchase them with a charging dock, though only the latter represents an added cost. If you're buying them directly from Jabra's website, they're available in either black or beige.

Color Optimization USB Dongle Charging Stand
Black Microsoft Teams USB-A Yes
Beige Unified Communication (UC)  USB-C No

We tested the 28599-989-999 variant, which are UC-optimized stereo headphones with a USB-A wireless dongle, a black color scheme, and no charging stand. While we haven't tested the other variants, we expect them to perform somewhat similarly overall. If someone comes across a Jabra Evolve2 85 that's differently configured from the above table of options, let us know in the discussions so we can update our review.

Compared to other headphones

The Jabra Evolve2 85 are premium professional headphones that are versatile enough for a wide range of uses. They offer a comfortable fit, premium build quality, and generous battery life. They also provide a highly customizable listening experience as well as good noise isolation capability. Unfortunately, they're bulkier than on-ear options like the Jabra Evolve2 65 Wireless and have a marginally less impressive microphone than the Bose 700 Headphones Wireless. If you're looking for more options, take a look at our list of recommendations of the best office headphones, the best over-ear headphones, and the best Bluetooth headsets for phone calls.

Jabra Elite 85h Wireless

The Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless and Jabra Elite 85h Wireless are very evenly matched over-ear headphones. The Evolve2 85, meant for professional users, block out more ambient noise, have a better-performing microphone, and charge slightly faster. The Elite 85h are designed for more casual use and have a more neutral sound profile out-of-the-box. They also last longer on a single charge.

Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless

The Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless and Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless have different strengths and weaknesses. The Sony are slightly better-built, provide a more consistent listening experience, are more effective in blocking out ambient noise, and last longer off of a single charge. They also have lower wireless latency. The Jabra's boom microphone provides superior recording quality and noise handling capability. The Jabra's physical control scheme is also easier to use and offers more functionality.

Bose 700 Headphones Wireless

The Bose 700 Headphones Wireless and Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless are evenly matched over-ear office-oriented headphones. The Jabra have more intuitive controls, a longer continuous battery life, and are easier to carry around. They also provide a more customizable listening experience, as only the Jabra have a graphic EQ and audio presets in their companion app. However, the Bose are better-built, have lower Bluetooth latency, and an integrated microphone that's more effective at filtering out ambient noise than the Jabra's boom mic.

Jabra Evolve2 65 Wireless

The Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless are better office headphones than the Jabra Evolve2 65 Wireless. The 85's over-ear design and ANC feature block out more ambient noise than the on-ear 65. The 85 are also more comfortable and have more features in the Jabra Sound+ companion app. That said, the 65 have much longer continuous battery life and a better-performing boom microphone.

Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless

The Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless and Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless have different strengths and weaknesses. The Sony block out more ambient noise, feel better-built, and offer a more consistent listening experience as well as a broader range of configuration options in their companion app. However, the Jabra support multi-device pairing, last longer off of a single charge, and have an easier-to-use control scheme. The Jabra's boom mic also has superior recording quality and noise handling capability.

Bose QuietComfort 35 II/QC35 II Wireless 2018

The Bose QuietComfort 35 II/QC35 II Wireless 2018 and the Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless have different strengths and weaknesses. The Bose are more comfortable, deliver audio more consistently, block out more ambient noise, and have lower wireless latency, especially on iOS devices. Meanwhile, the Jabra have a more comprehensive control scheme, last longer off of a single charge, and have a more feature-packed companion app. Their boom microphone also outperforms the Bose's integrated unit.

+ Show more

Jabra Evolve2 85 Wireless Price

Stereo (USB-A) MT - No Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-A) MT - With Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-A) UC - No Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-A) UC - With Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-C) MT - No Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-C) MT - With Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-C) UC - No Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Stereo (USB-C) UC - With Stand
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

Recommended Articles

LOG IN

JOIN RTINGS.com

Be part of the most informed community and take advantage of our advanced tools to find the best product for your needs.
Join our mailing list:
Become an insider
EARLY ACCESS

Gain early access to all tests results for new products

Early Access UI
PRICES LISTED

Prices will now be listed directly in reviews and tables

product prices UI
MORE VOTES

Have 5 votes per product category to choose which product we’ll review next

Additional votes UI
UNLIMITED ACCESS

Gain unlimited access to detailed test results in tools and results (no blurred results)

test table UI

Create Post