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JBL Tune 225TWS Review

Last updated: 8 months ago
7 min read
Editor
rating
2.3
JBL Tune 225TWS earbuds

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JBL Tune 225TWS are comfortable little earphones with a colorful design and decent audio quality. However, they offer too little for the price.

Find out why below.

Earphones with a classic design are a reasonable choice for people who don’t like the feel of ear tips inside their ear canals.

However, that brings compromises, which are especially evident in JBL Tune 225TWS.

  • Firstly, passive noise isolation is almost nonexistent.
  • Secondly, earphones are prone to fall out of your ears, especially if their shape doesn’t compliment the buds’ shape.
  • And lastly, the bass extension is poor due to the lack of an in-ear seal.

On the other hand, the sound is too bright, but clean and relatively open, with great imaging capabilities.

More on that below.

To sum up, here’s what you should know about JBL Tune 225TWS:

  • Clear sound with decent bass rendition
  • Great comfort
  • Colorful design
  • No sub-bass
  • Poor stability
  • Mediocre battery life (4h 18min per charge)
  • Uncomfortable physical controls
Editor
rating
2.3
By HeadphonesAddict
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ratings
3.2
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CONTENTS (show more)

    Sound

    Star Rating
    2.5 Average

    The sound quality is somewhat mixed. Earphones lack bass extension and sound a bit bright. At least good soundstage and imaging help with immersion.

    Check the JBL Tune 225TWS Sound Comparison

    JBL Tune 225TWS Sound Quality Test – HeadphonesAddict

    JBL tuned the Tune 225TWS to sound cleaner in the midrange and highs.

    However, they should’ve made them more balanced instead of pushing the midrange forward. The results are mixed.

    Bass: It’s Lacking Sub-bass under 60Hz

    The biggest problem with even the best classic earbuds is that the bass doesn’t reach very low. It’s unsuitable for genres like hip hop and EDM.

    Thankfully, the advertised “Pure Bass” isn’t half bad. The low end on JBL Tune 225WTS is quite pleasing to listen to. It’s fairly tight and offers a decent punch depending on how well earbuds fit in your ears.

    In my case, if I sit calmly, I can adjust the earbuds to sound quite punchy and even slightly warm.

    However, earbuds tilt as soon I start moving, and the bass goes away.

    I want to point out that my ears aren’t friendly with classic earphones, so your mileage may vary.

    It’s worth noting that no matter how you put them in your ears, the sub-bass is simply missing. The low bass starts cutting away at around 60Hz, which is similar to some portable Bluetooth speakers.

    Consequently, bass guitars are sometimes absent or lack the bite you expect to hear.

    Drums also don’t sound as full as they should, but at least they sound tight and don’t get lost in the mix.

    Midrange: Bright but natural

    For some reason, JBL pushed the midrange forward. Presumably to increase the perception of clarity and maybe distract from the fact that the bass isn’t very full.

    Nevertheless, everything sounds brighter than usual, albeit still pretty natural. Drivers do a good job of maintaining enough detail and dynamics.

    Note that while the added brightness isn’t that much of an issue on normal volume levels, it can get harsh once you crank the earbuds up.

    Thankfully, I haven’t experienced any sibilance.

    Treble: Where’s the Energy?

    Higher frequencies are nice and shimmery for the most part. But because of the dip between 7-15kHz, they miss some energy and sparkle.

    You can hear this imbalance when some cymbal crashes sound pretty good and airy, whereas others are hard to hear.

    Lowering that 7kHz peak and bringing up the 10-11kHz region would help with treble delivery, but there’s sadly no companion app or custom EQ.

    JBL Tune 225TWS Frequency Response

    JBL Tune 225TWS frequency response

    On the positive side, the soundstage is slightly larger than with normal earbuds, pushing the sounds further outside your head.

    Accompanied with good imaging, it’s a treat to listen to some more open and well-produced songs like “I Talk to the Wind” by King Crimson.

    Comfort & Fit

    Star Rating
    2.5 Average

    As usual, the lack of in-ear fit makes JBL Tune 225TWS very comfy, but the stability is simply non-existing.

    JBL earbuds strongly resemble Apple AirPods shape, from the stems to the housing itself. That makes the Tune 225TWS very comfortable earbuds to wear.

    Paired with their lightweight design, you can barely feel them in your ears.

    However, they simply don’t want to stay inside. As soon as you start moving, you feel them sliding out.

    In my case, if I barely tilt my head on one side, they pop right out. In comparison, TaoTronics Soundliberty 80, other classic earphones, don’t fall out, even if I tilt my head for 90°.

    Therefore, I don’t even feel confident walking around the house with the Tune 225TWS in my ears.

    If that happens to you too, here are some tips on how to keep earbuds from falling out.

    JBL Tune 225TWS on rock
    The simple ergonomic design makes them comfy but not very stable.

    Of course, some users report that earbuds stay in fine, so you might have a different experience. Especially if you’re used to wearing classic earphones.

    What’s the conclusion?

    The earbuds provide a comfortable fit for long listening sessions in your room. However, don’t buy them for sports activities.

    Durability

    Star Rating
    2.5 Average

    Both earbuds and the charging case feel sturdy and shockproof. But surprisingly, they lack even the basic IP rating against water damage.

    On close inspection, earbuds look pretty solid. They’re glued together from 4 different parts, which isn’t ideal (the lesser parts, the better), but they don’t seem to break that easily.

    Earbuds are primarily covered in soft matte plastic. Only the silver ring around the housing lacks the softness.

    JBL Tune 225TWS metal hinge
    A thick metal hinge provides extra sturdiness to the lid.

    This is strange since that silver plastic touches your ears the most. You’d expect it to be extra rubbery to prevent earbuds from slipping out.

    Nevertheless, the biggest issue is the lack of water resistance. While I’m sure earbuds can survive some excess sweat, I see no reason why JBL brand couldn’t get them officially tested for durability.

    Moving to the charging case, it has a decent weight to it and feels reassuring. The hinge is made of metal for extra durability, and it’s nicely cold to the touch.

    What’s the carrying case lid like?

    All good. It sits firmly in place and provides a satisfying noise when shut down.

    Battery

    Star Rating
    2.5 Average

    The battery life of only 4 hours and 18 minutes is quite low. And the charging case doesn’t support wireless charging.

    JBL Tune 225TWS battery comparison

    JBL Tune 225TWS battery comparison

    JBL Tune 225TWS have a slightly lower battery life than advertised. At 50% volume, we got 4 hours and 18 minutes in the battery test, which is 42 minutes less than promised.

    Of course, that will still be enough for a typical day of use, and the charging case will quickly juice them up during breaks.

    The charging case supports fast charging via USB-C port, adding one extra hour in 15 minutes.

    Sadly, there’s no Qi wireless charging. For the price, it should be included.

    Features

    Star Rating
    2.0 Adequate

    A lackluster set of features for earbuds that cost $100, with uncomfortable-to-use physical controls and a limited list of commands.

    JBL Tune 225TWS are a strange product, especially considering the asking price of $100. JBL really didn’t bother making these more compelling.

    Thankfully, there’s strong competition. More on that below.

    JBL Tune 225TWS charging connectors
    Charging connectors with a microphone hole on top.

    While the lack of active noise cancellation and ambient sound mode is understandable, the absence of JBL app compatibility isn’t.

    Consequently, you can’t remap button controls nor tweak the sound signature to your liking.

    To make matters worse, the baked-in commands are painfully basic. You only get playback controls and the ability to summon a voice assistant.

    Since using those buttons isn’t particularly comfortable, you’ll probably only use them to answer phone calls.

    Microphone Quality

    Speaking of calls, the call quality is pretty good for the most part. Your voice sounds clear and understandable, albeit quite thin.

    JBL Tune 225TWS microphone test

    Moving into a noisier environment, the quality drops slightly, introducing some static distortion. However, all in all, the person on the other side of the line will still pick up your words just fine.

    Still, try making calls in a noise-free area for the best quality.

    Noise Isolation

    Star Rating
    1.5 Meh

    Without a proper seal, you can’t expect effective passive noise isolation, which is precisely the case with JBL Tune 225TWS.

    Another compromise you have to take with classic earphones is poor passive isolation.

    The difference between having earbuds in or out is almost inaudible. The ambient sound does get slightly thinner when having earbuds in your ears, but that’s it.

    That means it’s impractical to wear the JBL Tune 225TWS on public transport or near a busy road since you won’t hear the music.

    On the other hand, hearing surrounding noise can be helpful when you want to be aware of your surroundings while listening to your favorite tunes.

    JBL Tune 225TWS nozzle
    JBL Tune 225TWS can’t seal off your ear canal, so they let it a lot of ambient noise.

    Bluetooth

    Star Rating
    3.0 Good

    The Bluetooth connectivity strength is good with average range. Earbuds support mono mode but no multipoint. Using the AAC codec introduces some audio lag when watching videos.

    JBL Tune 225TWS use Bluetooth 5.0 to ensure a stable overall functionality without any random stutters during regular use.

    On the flip side, the Bluetooth range is somewhat average. Earbuds manage to endure around 40 feet and break the audio as soon as I pass the second brick wall.

    How to pair JBL Tune 225TWS?

    1. As for the pairing process, it’s pretty straightforward. For the first time, simply place them out of the charging case. You’ll see a Google Fast Pair pop-up on your Android device.
    2. To pair them to a different device, turn them off and back on, and hold both buttons for 5 seconds or until you hear a beeping sound (indicating “pairing mode”).

    While JBL Tune 225TWS don’t support multipoint, they can work individually as an earpiece (mono mode). The latter is great if you want to save some battery.

    JBL Tune 225TWS buds and case
    JBL Tune 225TWS offer a stable connection but with some minor delay during video playback.

    Bluetooth Codecs in JBL Tune 225 TWS?

    Earbuds support SBC and AAC Bluetooth codecs.

    Strangely, Android uses AAC by default, even though SBC works better on that operating system (AAC is better optimized for iOS).

    Is There Audio Lag in JBL Tune 225 TWS?

    When watching videos like YouTube, you can see a minimal yet annoying delay in the audio. That affects both Android and iOS devices.

    Fortunately, on Android devices, you can quickly resolve the issue by forcing your Android gadget to use SBC instead.

    However, be aware that the next time you connect earbuds to your gadget, it will continue using AAC.

    On the other hand, you’ll have to live with that minor delay on your iOS since there is no workaround.

    Should You Get The JBL Tune 225TWS?

    Star Rating
    2.0 Adequate

    As mentioned initially, these true wireless earbuds are hard to sell.

    Sure, they’re comfortable and have okay battery life. Even the sound is good once your ears adjust to the added brightness of the mid-range.

    However, poor stability, mediocre features, annoying physical controls with no volume control, no audio equalizer, average Bluetooth range, and no IP rating makes these hard to recommend at $100 or even under $50.

    You can find some better deals in our best true wireless earbuds under $50 guide.

    JBL Tune 225TWS button
    The physical multifunction button on top of the earbud.

    If you only want to purchase earbuds with classic design and nothing else, then TaoTronics Soundliberty 80 are a better overall choice and a good alternative for a lower price.

    How JBL Tune 225TWS Compare to the Competition?

    • JBL earbuds sound a tad cleaner than the competition (other classic earphones), although not as full.
    • The battery life is comparable to the competition, with around 4-5 hours per charge being a norm.
    • Earbuds don’t feel as stable in your ears compared to the other classic earbuds.
    • The competition has at least the basic IPX rating.
    • Most classic wireless earphones use touch controls, which are more comfortable to use.

    What are JBL Tune 225TWS Alternatives?

    TaoTronics Soundliberty 80

    TaoTronics Soundliberty 80 on a moss

    Fuller-sounding yet not as clear true wireless earbuds with classic design.

    They offer a unique look and similar comfort to the JBL’s but a more stable fit and an IPX8 rating.

    Microphone performance is excellent, but the battery life (only 2.5h per charge) is disappointing.

    TaoTronics Soundliberty 80 review

    Skullcandy Push Ultra

    Skullcandy Push Ultra true wireless earbuds

    Similar overall sound signature but with a slightly punchier low-end.

    Unlike JBL Tune 225TWS, the Ultra’s use ear hooks to stay in place during workouts.

    They come in a large Qi wireless charging case with 34 hours of playtime in it (buds offer 6 hours per charge). They also support an app, but it’s mostly for firmware updates.

    Skullcandy Push Ultra review

    TaoTronics Soundliberty 88

    Taotronics Soundliberty 88 earbuds inside the case

    These wireless headphones have a midrange-focused sound profile with minimal bass and rolled-off treble.

    These are a great pair for phone calls with the excellent mic recording quality and can last up to five hours on a single charge.

    Touch controls are nicely responsive and can even let you adjust the volume.

    TaoTronics Soundliberty 88 review

    What’s in the Box?

    JBL Tune 225TWS accessories
    • JBL Tune 225TWS true wireless earbuds
    • Charging case
    • USB-C charging cable
    • User guide

    Specifications

    Type: True wireless
    Connection: Bluetooth 5.0
    Back design: Closed-back
    Drivers: 12mm dynamic
    Frequency range: 20-20.000Hz
    Impedance: 32 Ohm
    Weight: 0.34oz (9.8g)(both buds)
    Mic & Controls: Yes
    Water resistance: None
    Battery life: 5 + 20h in case
    Charging time: 2h + quick charge – USB-C
    Active noise cancelling: No
    Bluetooth codecs: SBC, AAC
    Wireless range: 33ft (10m)
    Microphone: Yes

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