JBL Tour One Wireless review

One-minute review

Over-ear headphones have two jobs: fit comfortably and play audio well enough to truly enjoy the content. Sprinkled within those basic tenets are additional features that are supposed to enhance the experience. You could easily describe any over-ear pair that way, but the JBL Tour One Wireless are an interesting case because they’re designed to cater to a larger audience. 

JBL can be hit or miss on its audio products, and the same could be said about the Tour One: the sound, while good, isn’t exceptional, and while the functionality is fine, we’re left thinking these could have hit a higher note. 

There is potential for JBL to release improvements by way of a firmware update through the app, and had already done so once while we tested them. If the company keeps doing that, it may have enough to push them up the ladder as tougher competitors. For now, however, we’d still recommend a pair of cans from Sony or Bose if you want top-tier noise cancellation.

Price and release date

The JBL Tour One were released in May 2021 and come in at $300 / £279 (around AU$450). The challenge is that ballpark price has plenty of other headphones that can compete or play better, and that’s where things get complicated here. 

For starters, that’s just a little bit less money than the stellar Sony WH-1000XM4, what we consider to be the best noise-cancelling headphones on the market, and the Bose QuietComfort 35 II, which comes in a close second. Because ANC isn’t the JBL Tour One’s strong suit, both feel like better values despite their higher price.

(Image credit: Ted Kritsonis)


The Tour One Wireless don’t have any special design treatments to stand out in a crowded field. Look at them straight on and they resemble so many others. Gaze at them from the side and the neutral look also doesn’t particularly stand out. The gunmetal and black color scheme is old hat by now, but it still works, so these will fit right in if you’re not looking for anything too conspicuous. 

The faux leather headband is soft enough to sink in without feeling like it pinches after a while, whereas the earcups have little wiggle room once you put them on. That’s great for stability, but perhaps not so much if you want your ears to breathe a little. JBL may have done this by design to better trap in the bass and avoid leakage that would otherwise dilute it. 

Whatever the case, the fit may be divisive because, unlike the headband, you have little recourse to adjust the earcups. They do swivel, which helps contour to the shape if your head and ears, but if you don’t like the thinner padding or how they sit, there’s not much you can do about it. Plus, they do trap in heat, though we didn’t find it to be stifling enough to take them off for a breather all that often.

JBL did try to allocate controls in a symmetrical way. The right earpiece has a power switch that also doubles as the Bluetooth pairing button. Volume controls sit nearby, including a 2.5mm headphone jack when you want to use the Tour One Wireless in a wired form. The USB-C charging port is on the left cup, along with a solitary button to trigger your native voice assistant.

Interestingly, the right earcup’s entire outer surface is touch-sensitive, housing a number of controls. Play or pause with a simple tap, or double tap to skip a track. Unfortunately, there’s no way to repeat one. We tried triple tapping and got nothing. Tap and hold and you can cycle through active noise cancellation (ANC) and Ambient Aware. JBL’s Headphones app does offer some ways to customize those controls, like allocating voice assistants — Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri or Bixby — to the panel instead. In turn, you could apply the Ambient Aware mode to the button on the left earcup as well.

While we didn’t like not being able to repeat a track, we did appreciate how effective the overall controls were. We rarely made a wrong move, and that’s not always the case with every pair of over-ear headphones.

(Image credit: Ted Kritsonis)


JBL includes a very nice case to go with the Tour One Wireless, complete with pouches for the cables that come with them. To carry and transport these felt like a pleasure based on how snugly everything fit inside.

It was easy enough to pair the Tour One Wireless, especially with Pixel smartphones because JBL supports Google’s fast pairing protocols. We had already downloaded the JBL Headphones app from previous reviews, so were able to also get that connection going in short order. 

Within the app is a set of options that do come in handy. We liked the auto play/pause when removing or putting the Tour One on, as well as an alarm in case we ever felt like taking a nap while listening to music or spoken word content. And then there’s the equalizer, which is necessary to tinker with because of the way these headphones sound. 

By default, they play with a balanced, though subdued, sound profile. The EQ has a few presets, including one for bass, but we went ahead and created our own to see what we could get. 

(Image credit: Ted Kritsonis)


We tried the Tour One Wireless in varying conditions and situations to gauge their sound. For the most part, we left ANC on, especially because JBL designed it to be somewhat adaptive, but also kept Ambient Aware on often to see how well that feature worked.

The gist is that the Tour One Wireless are steady enough not to go over any proverbial audio cliff, but those guardrails also force you to be more aggressive with the EQ. For example, at regular levels, these headphones feel restrained. Unleash the bass, and they punch through with more of a thump that makes them come alive. We noticed that right away when playing Friend by KastomariN and the live version of Maxwell’s Ascension. With current hip hop and EDM tracks, you feel the rumble even more. On the flip side, play rock or jazz and the treble can rip through a track with verve, like Jimi Hendrix’s All Along the Watchtower. Thing is, the treble can sometimes feel piercing, and that’s where the EQ can help level off the worst excesses of the highs in the audio spectrum. It helps, but can’t always stave off the harsher elements, especially when you find that the headphones treat quieter portions of a song the same way they do the louder ones. 

We also had to consider how the noise features applied. JBL’s True Adaptive NC regulates ANC by raising or lowering the effect based on what’s happening around you. The problem with it is that it makes an audible difference, so if you’re walking down the street, it’s adjusting a lot to compensate for the variances in both low and high frequencies. We opted to keep ANC at Everyday mode for a more consistent approach. 

Ambient Aware was a mixed bag, not because we couldn’t hear our surroundings, but because they were sometimes muddled. The mode did better with others’ voices than with various sounds, making the mode something to use when necessary, rather than a reliable feature to trust. 

We found phone calls were generally okay, particularly when ANC was on to block out other sounds. Despite that, we noticed much better results in quieter settings, so these may not be the best for conversations when things are loud around you. 

Battery life

JBL rates the Tour One Wireless at up to 24 hours per charge at the standard default volume. We actually hit that number quite easily going a notch above that level, hitting closer to 28-30 hours. We also took advantage of the auto-off setting to have them turn off after 15 minutes when we left them idle. 

Battery life is solid during wired playback, including with game consoles using the TRS cable. It’s just that you lose out on the microphones, since only audio passes through, meaning you won’t be able to communicate in multiplayer games.

Should you buy the JBL Tour One?

(Image credit: Ted Kritsonis)

Buy them if…

You’re looking for easy, intuitive controls
We did appreciate how effective the overall controls were. We rarely made a wrong move, and that’s not always the case with every pair of over-ear headphones.

You want fun, bassy sound
JBL is known for having a fun sound signature and these are no different. Unleash the bass, and they punch through with more of a thump that makes your music come alive.

You need extra-long battery life over-ear headphones
We easily hit 28-30 hours of battery life on a single charge with these at medium volume, which should make them great travel companions for people who are always on the move.

Don’t buy them if…

Your ears run hot
If you’ve felt overheated by over-ear headphones in the past, you might want to avoid the Tour One.

You like to take phone calls on your headphones
The JBL Tour One sound great, but they don’t make you sound great, unfortunately. They can be useful if you take calls in quieter settings, but we wouldn’t recommend them if you take calls in a crowded office space or walking down the street.

You’re big on features like Ambient Aware and Adaptive ANC
It’s nice that the Tour One have active noise cancellation, but the accompanying features like Ambient Aware and Adaptive ANC could use some more work.

  • Looking for the ultimate over-ears? Check out our guide to the best over-ear headphones
Internet Explorer Channel Network
News Related


22 awesome gifts wine lovers actually want

— Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission. Finding the right gifts for wine lovers is no easy fête. ... Read more »

Maryland congressman deactivates Facebook account

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — A Maryland congressman announced Wednesday that he has deactivated his official congressional and campaign Facebook and Instagram accounts until their parent company and Congress make substantial ... Read more »

Watch: When Google CEO Sundar Pichai forgot to unmute himself

Google parent Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai has shared a video where while talking he forgot to unmute himself. Pichai has shared the two-minute long video of the incident on Twitter. ... Read more »

Sony might release a terrible VR headset soon, but don't worry, it's not PSVR 2

This week’s VR headset updates keep coming with the latest being a leak suggesting Sony is working on a non-PSVR 2 virtual reality device. Earlier this week Pimax unveiled its ... Read more »

Call of Duty: Vanguard won't eat up as much hard drive space as previous games

Activision Blizzard Lawsuit Publisher Activision Blizzard, responsible for the game this article refers to, is currently embroiled in ongoing litigation in regards to claims reporting a workplace culture that allegedly ... Read more »

The new Nokia G300 elevates what an affordable phone can do

Getting the best value when buying a new phone can be tricky. You can always just buy the latest and greatest thing, but not everyone has $1,000 to drop on ... Read more »

Should you buy a new Kindle Paperwhite now or wait for the Black Friday deals?

Read more »

Apple's new SharePlay feature for FaceTime will soon support TikTok, NBA and Disney+

On Monday, Apple rolled out an update to iPhones so users could talk on FaceTime while watching their favorite shows and movies or listening to music. Soon, iPhone owners on ... Read more »

Amid a computer chip and car parts shortage, GM third-quarter profits plummet 40%

General Motors reported Wednesday that its third-quarter net income plummeted 40% as it struggled against production constraints and thin new car inventory. The auto industry has faced a global shortage ... Read more »

Early Black Friday deal drops the Surface Pro 7 to $599 - the lowest price ever

Early Black Friday deals are live at Best Buy, and we’ve just spotted a massive price cut on Microsoft’s versatile Surface Pro 7. Right now, you can get the Surface ... Read more »

Many businesses are still failing to secure their cloud data

Despite the unabated onslaught of cyber-attacks on cloud computing providers, a vast majority of businesses still fail to encrypt their sensitive data housed in public clouds. The 2021 Thales Global ... Read more »

West Ham vs Man City live stream: how to watch 2021 Carabao Cup online from anywhere

West Ham host Man City in a mouthwatering clash of the Premier League’s third- and fourth-placed teams. This is the first meeting of David Moyes’ impressive outfit and Pep Guardiola’s ... Read more »

Black Friday MacBook Air deals

If you’re looking for a MacBook Air Black Friday deal, then this year you could be in luck. The latest model, the MacBook Air (M1, 2020), is in our view ... Read more »

Lucid Air deliveries are just days away as the Tesla rival provides serious competition

The Lucid Air offers the longest range of any EV ever made, as well as extreme horsepower and acceleration. Most impressively, the automaker has shown it is capable of not ... Read more »

Leicester vs Brighton live stream: how to watch 2021 Carabao Cup online from anywhere

Leicester’s season has been a wild ride so far, a slow start giving way to utter chaos. The Foxes’ past four games have produced 20 goals, while Brighton’s outstanding early ... Read more »

These Resident Evil Village deals for PS5 and PC are scarily good

Black Friday deals may not officially kick off for some time yet, but that hasn’t stopped a range of retailers offering big discounts on survival horror Resident Evil Village – ... Read more »

How to use Microsoft Teams online

Microsoft Teams is among a number of video conferencing tools that have exploded in popularity over the last 18 months. The Covid-19 pandemic has seen schools, businesses, and families rely ... Read more »

Black Friday PS5 external hard drive deals 2021: what we expect

Black Friday PS5 external hard drive deals always present a fantastic opportunity to save on additional storage, and usually make up some of the best Black Friday PS5 deals you ... Read more »

'Absolutely gutted': Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer tests positive for COVID-19

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has tested positive for coronavirus, missing the opportunity to challenge the government in-person on its budget. Read more »

How does Norton 360 for Gamers protect your device?

Norton 360 for Gamers is a version of the Norton 360 security suite which is specifically aimed at you guessed it – gamers! But if all you’re doing is playing ... Read more »

Black Friday Dyson V15 deals 2021: early sales and what to expect

Dyson’s V15 vacuums are, undoubtedly, some of the best money can buy. In fact, we awarded the Dyson V15 Detect Absolute the number one spot on our list of the ... Read more »

New Wheel of Time trailer shows what's at stake in Amazon Prime's next big hit

Amazon has released a new trailer for The Wheel of Time ahead of its November 19 arrival – and it looks certain to be the next big Amazon Prime Video ... Read more »

Xbox series X stock - live: Game restock is available in store – how to get a console

LIVE – Updated at 16:02 © The Independent Xbox – explainer indybest UPDATE: Game has Xbox series X stock at some of its UK stores, as a Fifa 22 bundle ... Read more »

Here are the EE Pocket-lint Awards nominees for Best Phone (sub £500) 2021 and how to vote

© Provided by Pocket-lint Here are the EE Pocket-lint Awards nominees for Best Phone sub £500 2019 and how to vote photo 2 (Pocket-lint) – The Shortlist for the EE ... Read more »

This limited-time printer ink deal is not to be missed

Consumers have been facing steeper and steeper printer ink prices for the last few years, which means finding good deals has become increasingly difficult. In honor of Holloween, however, 4inkjets ... Read more »

Best free web browser games: 10 games you have to play

Don’t expect the best browser games to just be fillers for when you don’t have anything else to play. Compared to some of the best free games and even a ... Read more »

Intel Alder Lake is here and it feels like Team Blue is back

Intel has announced its 12th-generation Alder Lake-S desktop platform, bringing six new desktop processors to the table. These processors bring a truly next-generation improvement to Intel for the first time ... Read more »

EU investigates Nvidia's purchase of chip designer Arm

FILE – In this Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014 file photo, people gather in the Nvidia booth at the Mobile World Congress mobile phone trade show in Barcelona, Spain. European Union ... Read more »

Our Yorkshire Farm's Amanda and Clive Owen admit 21-year marriage has 'hit rocky patch'

Clive and Amanda Owen, the stars of Our Yorkshire Farm on C5 (Renegade Pictures) Our Yorkshire Farm stars Amanda and Clive Owen have spoken out following reports that their marriage ... Read more »

Budget 2021: Beer and prosecco duty cuts - new alcohol taxes explained

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced a raft of changes to alcohol duties that he promised will bring the cost of a pint in the pub down by 3p “permanently”. Read more »

What Sunak's budget means for household finances

For many the budget would feel like Sunak gave with one hand, and took away with the other. Photo: Getty UK's chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak insisted his statement ... Read more »

How to get broadband without a landline

On the hunt to get broadband without a landline? You’ve come to the right place. The first thing to know is that this is not only possible but there are ... Read more »

Cities and climate change: why low-rise buildings are the future – not skyscrapers

Paris is an example of a densely built low-rise city. DaLiu/Shutterestock More than half of the world’s 7.8 billion people live in cities and urban areas. By 2050, an additional ... Read more »

Self-driving "Roboats" ready for testing on Amsterdam's canals

Visitors to Amsterdam may soon spot a self-driving watercraft the size of a small car cruising silently through its ancient canals, ferrying passengers or transporting goods or trash. It will ... Read more »

Amazon invests in Italy's CMC Machinery

Amazon, through its Climate Pledge Fund, has bought a minority stake in Italy‘s CMC Machinery, a company with technology that makes custom-sized boxes that eliminate the need for single-use plastic ... Read more »

This vicious WordPress plugin bug could wipe your whole site

Cybersecurity researchers have helped patch a high-severity rated security flaw in a popular WordPress plugin, which could be exploited to completely wipe and reset any vulnerable WordPress website. Discovered by ... Read more »

Saucony Endorphin Pro 2 review

One-minute review The Saucony Endorphin Pro 2 is a running shoe that feels great at speed, and comes in cheaper than other performance shoes from Nike, Asics and Adidas. The ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic