Updated May 31, 2019 at 09:47 am

JBL Endurance Dive Wireless HEADPHONES REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.3.1
7.0
Mixed Usage
7.2
Neutral Sound
7.6
Commute/Travel
7.6
Sports/Fitness
6.9
Office
5.3
Wireless Gaming
5.2
Wired Gaming
6.6
Phone Call
Type : In-ear
Enclosure : Closed-Back
Wireless : Yes
Noise Cancelling : No
Mic : Yes
Transducer : Dynamic

The JBL Endurance Dive are good sports headphones that have acceptable sound quality. These headphones are advertised to be waterproof enough for swimming thanks to the IPX7 rating. They also have 1GB of internal storage, which is useful for swimmers since Bluetooth won’t work well in the water, or for working out without your phone. They are quite versatile for other everyday uses such as commuting since their fit blocks out a good amount of ambient noise. Unfortunately, their design is a bit bulky and their battery life is worse than the similar, and better-sounding, JBL Endurance Sprint.

Test Results
Design 7.3
Isolation 8.4
Microphone 6.3
Active Features 5.7
Connectivity 2.9
Pros
  • Good passive noise isolation and low leakage.
  • Stable and breathable for sports.
  • Durable and waterproof design.
Cons
  • Slightly bulky design.
  • In-ear fit might not be comfortable for everyone.
  1. Update 11/21/2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.1.
  2. Update 11/6/2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.
  3. Update 6/3/2019: The test results were processed incorrectly. They have been reprocessed to fix the error, sound score and text have been updated.

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7.3

Design

The JBL Endurance Dive are waterproof in-ears that have a similar design to the Endurance Sprint, but with a shorter and thicker cable. They aren’t the most comfortable in-ear headphones we’ve tested, but if you manage to find a good fit with their twist-and-lock procedure, they are very stable for most sports. They also have onboard storage since they are designed for swimmers and the Bluetooth signal won’t work in the water (although we don't yet have a test to confirm this). They have the same touch-sensitive control scheme as the Sprint, but it seems easier to use and registers fewer unwanted commands. The ear-hooks are also magnetic and if the right earbud isn’t in use, it will power off the headphones, which can get frustrating at times.

Style

The JBL Endurance Dive look fairly similar to the JBL Endurance Sprint and the Endurance Peak, but with a slightly shorter and thicker cable. These headphones have a sporty-look thanks to their ear-hook and bright flashy color designs. The buds are quite large as there’s a touch-sensitive surface for you to register commands on the right earbud. The design of these headphones is fairly bulky and protrude quite a lot out of your ears.

6.5 Comfort
Weight : 0.06 lbs
Clamping Force
:
0 lbs

The Endurance Dive are not the most comfortable in-ears we’ve tested and since their bud design is identical to the Endurance Sprint and Peak, they’ll feel the same. These headphones enter your ear canal deeply, which can create an air-tight seal. The earbuds have a “twist-to-lock” wear procedure that can be a bit finicky and doesn't always create the best fit in the ears. Their ear-hooks are fairly bulky but are comfortable to wear for a while without feeling the weight of the large buds. On the upside, since their cable is shorter and a bit less loose than the Sprint’s, it fits nicely on the back of your head and you won’t feel it wiggling around during physical activity. They also come with a few tip options to help you find the best fit, but there are only 3 different sizes.

7.0 Controls
OS Compatibility
:
N/A
Ease Of Use : Mediocre
Feedback : Decent
Call/Music Control : Yes
Volume Control : Yes
Microphone Control : No
Channel Mixing
:
N/A
Noise Cancelling Control : N/A
Talk-Through
:
N/A
Additional Buttons : Music mode

These headphones have a touch-sensitive control scheme on their ear-hooks, which is a bit hard to use as it is very sensitive and it’s easy to register unwanted commands. On the upside, if you’re not wearing the headphones and the magnetic ear-hooks are snapped to the bud, it powers off the headphones, so it won’t register commands like it could on the Endurance Sprint, which seemed to be something that frustrated users. The touch-sensitive surface is slightly more responsive and easier to use, but we had issues with their pairing mode.

You get common functionalities like play/pause, call management, and track skipping with tapping commands. You can also control your listening volume with swiping up or down. To switch to their internal storage, you need to tap and hold the right bud for 3 seconds and the 3 three LEDs next to the Bluetooth logo will start flashing. This is useful for swimmers since Bluetooth won’t work in the water, or for working out without your phone.

9.2 Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference : 0.8 C

Like most in-ear headphones, the Dive don’t trap much heat inside your ears, which means they’ll be good sports headphones as they won’t make you sweat more than usual thanks to airflow. You shouldn’t notice a big difference in temperature when wearing them, especially if you use them underwater.

7.5 Portability
L : 3.5 "
W : 2.1 "
H : 2.7 "
Volume : 20 Cu. Inches
Transmitter Required : N/A

These headphones are very portable. Even if they are a bit bulkier than most wireless in-ears, they easily fit inside pockets or a bag. They also rest around the neck if you don’t want to cramp the cable in pockets. They are easy to carry around and to bring to the gym.

6.5 Case
Type : Pouch
L : N/A
W : N/A
H : N/A
Volume : N/A

The JBL Endurance Dive come with a small rubber pouch that resembles the BeatsX’s case. It protects the headphones from scratches or light physical damage from falls. The case doesn’t fully close and it is a bit hard to fit the headphones, charging cable, and tip options inside it at the same time.

7.5 Build Quality

The JBL Endurance Dive are well-built headphones and feel more durable than the Endurance Sprint thanks to their shorter and thicker cable. The headphones are also advertised to be IPX7 and suitable to use for swimming, although we don’t test this internally yet. They have thick and rubberized ear-hooks that feel durable. The main weak point of the Endurance Sprint was the thin cable, and JBL seem to have fixed this on the Dive.

7.5 Stability

The JBL Endurance Dive are very stable and will be suitable for most sports, running, and to work out with. Their ear-hook design holds the headphones well and they shouldn’t fall from your ears, even with a tug on the cable. The earbuds also have a sleeve that helps them to securely fit inside the ear, without moving during physical activity. Although the enhancer attachment that goes around the tip of the buds helps by adding more points of contact with your inner ear, if you do not get the twist-to-lock wearing procedure right, they can pop out of ears.

Headshots 1
Headshots 2
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Sound

Update 06/03/2019: As a user pointed out, we didn't use the right compensation curve when testing the Endurance Dive. We've reprocessed the test results and adjusted the score, text and test boxes accordingly.

The JBL Endurance Dive are acceptable-sounding closed-back in-ear headphones. They have a deep and extended bass, a very well-balanced mid-range, and a great treble. However, there's a small mismatch in their bass range and a constant underemphasis in the mid-range, which slightly thins out vocals and leads, on top of nudging them to the back of the mix. Overall, these headphones are versatile enough for a wide variety of music genres but are slightly better suited for bass-heavy music. 

Sound Profile
Bass Amount
:
0.72 db
Treble Amount
:
2.09 db
8.1 Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
:
0.38 dB

The JBL Endurance Dive have great frequency response consistency. Assuming the user is able to achieve a proper fit and an air-tight seal using the assortment of tips that come with the headphones, they should be able to get consistent bass and treble delivery every time they use the headphones. We only measured a small variation of about 6dB around 8kHz. Also, if the user fails to achieve a proper and air-tight seal, they could experience a different bass delivery.

9.1 Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
:
1.25 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
:
10 Hz
Low-Bass
:
0.43 dB
Mid-Bass
:
0.36 dB
High-Bass
:
-1.24 dB

The bass performance of the Dive is good. Their LFE (low-frequency extension) is down to 10Hz, which is excellent, indicating a deep and extended bass. On top of it, low-bass, responsible for the thump and rumble common to bass-heavy music and sound effects, follows our target curve accurately. However, the response goes under our target curve in high-bass, which makes the bass a bit thin-sounding and won’t sound too boomy, but this won't be too audible.

8.7 Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
:
1.79 dB
Low-Mid
:
-1.91 dB
Mid-Mid
:
-2.22 dB
High-Mid
:
-0.29 dB

The mid-range performance is also good. The response throughout the range is well-balanced and even, but it is slightly underemphasized by about 2dB. This thins out the vocals and lead instruments a little bit and nudges them towards the back of the mix.

8.5 Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
:
2.94 dB
Low-Treble
:
0.24 dB
Mid-Treble
:
1.99 dB
High-Treble
:
2.36 dB

The Dive’s treble performance is very good. The response before 10kHz is virtually flawless and follows our target curve accurately, which results in detailed vocals, leads, and sibilants (S and T sounds). There’s a small dip in the low-treble, but it shouldn’t be too audible.

8.4 Peaks/Dips
Peaks
:
0.89 db
Dips
:
1.4 db
8.7 Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
:
0.21
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
:
0.44
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
:
1.95
Weighted Phase Mismatch
:
4.85

The stereo imaging of the Endurance Dive is excellent. The weighted group delay is at 0.21, which is very good. The GD graph also shows that the group delay response never crosses the audibility threshold, suggesting a tight bass and a transparent treble reproduction. Additionally, the L/R drivers of our test unit were well-matched in amplitude, frequency, and phase response, which is important for the accurate placement and localization of objects (voices, instruments, video game effects) in the stereo image. However, note that these results are only valid for our unit and yours may perform differently.

0.6 Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
:
N/A
PRTF Size (Avg.)
:
N/A
PRTF Distance
:
N/A
Openness
:
2.0
Acoustic Space Excitation
:
0.9

The soundstage is poor. Since creating a large and speaker-like soundstage is partially dependent on having a speaker-like pinna activation, and in-ear headphones bypass the pinna and don't interact with it, their soundstage will be perceived to be small and located inside the listener's head. Their closed-back design also means that their soundstage won't feel and open as open-back earbuds like the Apple AirPods 2 2019 and the SoundSport Free.

8.0 Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
:
0.268
WHD @ 100
:
0.087
8.4

Isolation

The JBL Endurance Dive have very good passive isolation and their fit is almost identical to that of the Endurance Sprint, meaning they have similar isolation performance. If you can achieve a good fit with the provided tips and the twist-and-lock sleeve, you can block out a lot of ambient noise from seeping into your audio. They also barely leak, even at high volumes, so you can mask more ambient noise by playing your music at higher volume levels without distracting those around you.

8.0 Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
:
Overall Attenuation
:
-22.68 dB
Bass
:
-11.38 dB
Mid
:
-21.55 dB
Treble
:
-36.05 dB

The JBL Endurance Dive have a good noise isolation performance. Although these headphones don't have active noise cancellation (ANC), their in-ear design provides good passive isolation. In the bass range, where the rumble of airplane and bus engines sits, they provide more than 11dB of isolation, which is pretty good for passive isolation. In the mid-range, important for blocking out speech, they isolate by about 22dB, which is very good. In the treble range, occupied by sharp sounds like S and Ts and A/C noise, they achieve 36dB of isolation, which is also very good.

9.2 Leakage
Leakage Audio
:
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
:
25.81 dB

Their leakage performance is excellent. The JBL Endurance Dive don’t leak in the bass and mid ranges, resulting in a very thin-sounding leakage. The significant portion of their leakage is concentrated over a very thin band around 5-6kHz. The overall level of the leakage is not very loud either. With the music at 100dB SPL, the leakage at 1 foot away averages at 26dB SPL and peaks at 48dB SPL, which is about the same as the noise floor of an average office.

6.3

Microphone

Integrated
:
Yes
In-line
:
No
Boom
:
No
Detachable Boom
:
No

The microphone of the JBL Endurance Dive is mediocre. In quiet environments, speech recorded or transmitted with this mic sounds relatively thin, noticeably muffled, and lacking in detail. However, they struggle to fully separate speech from background noise in moderately loud situations, like a busy street.

6.6 Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
:
LFE
:
219.83 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
:
3.41 dB
HFE
:
3179.16 Hz
Weighted THD
:
3.256
Gain
:
33.47 dB

The recording quality of the integrated microphone is mediocre. The LFE (low-frequency extension) of 220Hz means speech recorded/transmitted with this mic sounds noticeably thin. The HFE (high-frequency extension) of 3.2kHz results in a speech that lacks detail and is noticeably muffled. However, this is a limitation of the Bluetooth protocol and all Bluetooth microphones will perform similarly.

5.9 Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise :
Speech + Subway Noise :
SpNR
:
10.33 dB

The integrated microphone has a sub-par noise handling performance. In our SpNR test, it achieved a speech-to-noise ratio of 10dB, indicating that it is best suited for quiet environments as it may struggle to fully separate speech from background noise in moderately loud situations like a busy street.

5.7

Active Features

The JBL Endurance Dive have a decent battery life, but it is fairly shorter than the Endurance Sprint’s. With about 7 hours of continuous playback, they’ll be fine for workouts, but it could be a bit short for a full workday, on top of commuting. They also don’t have a companion app for customization options like an EQ. Additionally, their auto-off timer is set to 5 minutes, which is a bit aggressive and can't be changed, on top of the fact that they turn off if the ear-hooks are magnetically snapped to the buds. This means that as soon as you put them down or take out the right earbud to talk to someone, they will turn off.

6.3 Battery
Battery Type
:
Rechargable
Continuous Battery Life
:
7.3 hrs
Additional Charges
:
0
Total Battery Life
:
7.3 hrs
Charge Time
:
1.9 hrs
Power Saving Feature
:
Auto-Off Timer
Audio While Charging
:
No
Passive Playback
:
No
Charging Port : micro-USB

The Dive have about 7 hours of continuous playback, which is going to be enough for a few workouts, but won’t be ideal for long listening sessions or to use during a full workday. They also take 2 hours to charge fully, which some may find to be a bit long for 7 hours of playback time. On the upside, they have an auto-off feature to save power when being idle, but it is set to 5 minutes, which is very short and a bit frustrating at times, especially since you can't change it. Also, they automatically turn off if you take the right earbud out and the ear-hook magnetically snaps with the earbud.

0 App Support
App Name : N/A
iOS : N/A
Android : N/A
macOS : N/A
Windows : N/A
Equalizer
:
N/A
ANC Control
:
N/A
Mic Control : N/A
Room effects
:
N/A
Playback Control
:
N/A
Button Mapping : N/A
Surround Sound : N/A

These headphones don’t have a companion app for customization options.

2.9

Connectivity

The JBL Endurance Dive are Bluetooth-only headphones that have excellent wireless range. Unfortunately, these headphones are quite hard to put in pairing mode and they don’t support NFC. Their latency is also a bit high, which is normal for Bluetooth headphones, but this means they won’t be suitable for online games and watching video content.

7.1 Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
:
4.2
Multi-Device Pairing
:
No
NFC Pairing
:
No
Line of Sight Range
:
188 ft
Default Latency
:
231 ms
aptX Latency
:
N/A
aptX(LL) Latency
:
N/A

The JBL Endurance Dive are Bluetooth compatible. Unfortunately, they can only be connected to a single device at a time and don’t support NFC for a quicker and easier pairing, which would have been nice to have since we had a hard time pairing them to new devices.

These headphones have an average latency for Bluetooth headphones, which usually have around 200-220ms of delay. This means these headphones might not be the ideal choice for watching video content, but not everyone will notice the delay, especially since some apps and devices offer some sort of compensation. However, this is going to be too high for gaming.

0 Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line of Sight Range
:
N/A
Non-BT Latency
:
N/A
0 Wired
Analog Audio
:
N/A
USB Audio
:
N/A
Detachable : N/A
Length : N/A
Connection : N/A
Wired Latency
:
N/A

These Bluetooth headphones can’t be used with a wired connection.

PC / PS4 Compatibility
PC / PS4 Analog
:
No
PC / PS4 Wired USB
:
No
PC / PS4 Non-BT Wireless
:
No
Xbox One Compatibility
Xbox One Analog
:
No
Xbox One Wired USB
:
No
Xbox One Wireless
:
No
0 Base/Dock
Type
:
N/A
USB Input
:
N/A
Line In
:
N/A
Line Out
:
N/A
Optical Input
:
N/A
RCA Input
:
N/A
Dock Charging
:
N/A
Power Supply
:
N/A

The JBL Endurance Dive don’t have a dock.

In the box

  • JBL Endurance Dive headphones
  • 3 tip sizes
  • Rubber carrying pouch
  • Micro-USB to USB charging cable

Compared to other Headphones

The JBL Endurance Dive are good sports headphones that set themselves apart by their good value and touch-sensitive surface, which is rare for headphones in their price range. However, there are a few reports online saying that you still get water in your ears when swimming, which noticeably affects the sound quality, but they will still be good for working out. See our recommendations for the best wireless in-ears for running and working out, the best cheap wireless earbuds, and the best true wireless earbuds.

Beats Powerbeats3 Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Beats Powerbeats3 Wireless are better sports headphones than the JBL Endurance Dive. Their fit is more comfortable and their in-line remote might be easier to use than the touch-sensitive surface of the Dive, especially during physical activity. They fit a bit more securely inside the ear too, which is great for sports. They sound a bit more neutral and have noticeably more battery life. On the other hand, the JBL Dive have internal storage so you can use them in the water without Bluetooth, and their fit creates an air-tight seal that blocks a good amount of ambient noise, which makes them a better option for commuting.

Anker SoundCore Spirit X Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Anker SoundCore Spirit X Wireless are slightly better sports headphones than the JBL Endurance Dive and offer better value thanks to their affordable price. They are more comfortable and their physical controls are easier to use than the touch-sensitive area of the Dive. They fit nicely inside the ears and are very stable for sports. Their sound quality is also a bit more accurate, and they have almost double the amount of battery life of the Endurance Dive. On the other hand, the JBL’s fit isolates against a good amount of ambient noise, which makes them a better option for commuting. Their cable is also thicker and rubberized, which makes them more durable than the Spirit X. They also have a noticeably better wireless range and have onboard storage for when you want to use them for swimming or working out without a phone.

JBL Endurance Sprint Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The JBL Endurance Sprint Wireless and the JBL Endurance Dive are almost identical headphones when it comes to design. Their in-ear fit is the same and the only real difference between both of these models is that the Dive have a shorter and thicker cable, which is better suited for swimmers. Performance-wise, they are very similar, but the Sprint have a small edge over the Dive. Their sound is more accurate, and we measured about 2 additional hours of continuous playback time on the Sprint. On the other hand, the control scheme of the Dive feels a bit more responsive, and they have useful onboard storage since Bluetooth protocol won’t work in the water. They also have a better wireless range.

Bose SoundSport Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Bose SoundSport Wireless and the JBL Endurance Dive are both good sports headphones, but both are better at different things. The Bose have a better sound quality and are more comfortable, but they have a semi-open design, which doesn’t isolate a lot of ambient noise. On the other hand, the JBL Dive are waterproof and designed as swimming headphones. They are well-built and their fit is suitable for commuting thanks to the air-tight seal that blocks out noise. While you might get a bit less battery life on the Bose, you can connect them to two devices simultaneously.

7.0 Mixed Usage

Decent for mixed usage. The JBL Endurance Dive have an acceptable sound profile that is fairly versatile but are better suited for bass-heavy genres. Their fit can also create an air-tight seal that blocks out ambient noise from seeping into your audio, which makes them suitable to use in public transit and at the office. They won’t be ideal for watching TV or gaming due to their latency issues, but these headphones are designed for sports. They have a stable fit, are very breathable, and are designed to be waterproof for swimmers.

7.2 Neutral Sound

Passable for neutral listening. They have a deep and extended bass, a very well-balanced mid-range, and a great treble. However, they might sound a bit overly thumpy, but fans of bass-heavy genres may prefer this. Also, there’s a constant underemphasis in the mid-range, which thins out vocals and leads, on top of nudging them to the back of the mix. Overall, these headphones are versatile for a wide variety of music genres but will be better suited for bass-heavy genres and won’t be the ideal choice for vocal-centric music. Additionally, the in-ear fit might not be ideal for very long listening sessions as some may feel some ear soreness.

7.6 Commute/Travel

Decent for commuting. These headphones’ fit creates an air-tight seal that blocks a good amount of ambient noise, including the deep rumbles of a bud or plane engine. This means they’ll suitable for public transit, and since they practically don’t leak, you’ll be able to drown even more noise by raising your volume without disturbing people around you. Also, their battery life is long enough for your daily commute, but might not be enough for very long trips. If you can’t find a good fit, these in-ears won’t be comfortable to wear for a long period of time as well.

7.6 Sports/Fitness

Good for sports. The JBL Endurance Dive have a stable ear-hook design and are rated IPX7 for sweat and water resistance. They are advertised as swimming headphones and have onboard storage since Bluetooth won’t work well underwater. They are also breathable as they don’t trap heat inside your ears and they are easy to carry around to the gym. They can also isolate against a noisy training environment and their bass-heavy sound profile can keep you pumped during your workouts.

6.9 Office

Decent for the office. The JBL Endurance Dive do a very good job at blocking out work environment noise like ambient chatter and A/C noise. However, they won’t be the most comfortable option as in-ears tend to give ear soreness if you can’t find a good fit. Their battery life is also a bit short for a whole workday, especially if you are planning on commuting with them as well. On the upside, they have a pretty good wireless range so you’ll be able to walk around your desk without putting the headphones down, which is nice considering they automatically turn off when you do so.

5.3 Wireless Gaming

Poor for gaming. These headphones shouldn’t be used for this use case as their latency will be too high for video games and their microphone’s recording quality won’t be great for online multiplayer games. They also won’t be comfortable for long gaming sessions.

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