- Active Noise Cancelling
- ANC could be better
- Battery life isn't amazing
- Review Price: £70
- Active Noise Cancelling
- Soft ear pads
What are the Groov-e Elite?
If you want the immersive audio experience of active noise cancellation, you generally have to pay for it. The Groov-e Elite cans want to change all that by offering a background noise reduced listening experience without a wallet-stripping price.
In addition to active noise cancellation (ANC), the Groov-e Elite headphones offer wireless Bluetooth connectivity and fold away easily for travel. But can they compare to higher-end offerings? Or would you be better off with headphones that focus on the audio rather than forking out extra on ANC? Read on to find out.
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Groov-e Elite – Design
For the price, the Groov-e Elite headphones are pretty impressive. Yes, they have a plastic feel and the ANC button does feel a little flakey, but the ear pads at least are comfortable. The headband is solid, and despite its minimal padding, still proved comfy when worn for long periods – something that not all high-end headphones can manage.
The Groov-e Elite ANC fold away and fit in a hard-shell case that’s included in the box – a nice touch for travelling. Also included is a 3.5mm headphone cable.
Battery life is stated to last up to 12 hours with Bluetooth connected and ANC active. Not significant, but sufficient to keep you going for a good few days for commuting. Charging is quick and simple thanks to micro-USB, meaning most older phone chargers will do the job.
Control buttons sit on the earpiece and aren’t only easy to use but feel solid enough to last. A built-in microphone enables the use of these headphones as a hands-free kit.
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Groov-e Elite – Features
Noise cancellation at this price is a bonus. It’s further aided by the passive noise isolation of the earphone padding too. This, combined with Bluetooth wireless connectivity, makes using the Groov-e Elite with a phone when out and about a real possibility. The inclusion of the microphone extends this setup to a hands-free kit as well, so the phone can remained tucked away even when you receive a call.
The folding design of the Groov-e Elite is travel-friendly. The headphones can be popped into their hard-shell case and slipped into a bag without worry of damage, or accidental button pressing that could waste power.
There’s a 3.5mm audio port, so if you want to ditch the battery-life worry and listen without ANC then you can. Well, that’s presuming your handset still supports a headphone port.
The Elite cans also offer what Groov-e calls ‘Super Bass’. The result is more kick from the bottom end to help enhance the immersion of the listening experience.
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Groov-e Elite – Performance
The big sell here is ANC – and it works. Slip these on, hold down the button on the left ear casing, and you’ll notice that world noises slip away. That said, the padding of the earpieces do much to reduce noise passively.
However, there are far better versions of the tech available, albeit for a bit more money – such as the Sony WH-1000XM3. So while the Groov-e Elite eliminate some background train or plane noise, you’ll still hear enough to be distracted.
Another issue is that the ANC on and off button works independently of the Bluetooth power button. If you turn off the headphones, ANC remains on, continuing to use battery. Effectively, you have to turn these headphones off twice – or you’ll come back to them dead later in the day.
The microphone, for hands-free kit mode, isn’t great. In fact, the quality of a call was so poor – even when in a quiet room – that I had to switch back to the phone to take a call clearly.
The Super Bass functionality offers plenty of punch from the bass end when needed. The only issue is that it comes at the cost of the high end, leaving vocals sounding a little muffled. In addition, separation of instruments is poor. In fairness, it isn’t bad for the price – it’s just unlikely to impress the the audiophiles out there.
Battery life isn’t amazing for a pair of over-ear headphones, especially when you consider that some of the competition – the Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2, for example – can offer up to 50 hours. With the Groov-e Elite headphones you’ll realistically achieve around 10 hours of use.
Again, the price reflects this – but I worry about battery quality in terms of longevity, and the number of charges this headset can take before battery life gets even lower. That said, the Groov-e Elite will see you through most flights and daily commuting.
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Why buy the Groov-e Elite?
If you want ANC for less, then these Groov-e Elite headphones are for you. If you’d like a bit of bass and decent enough quality for watching Netflix on your commute then they’ll do the job. If you want good-quality music headphones, however, then you may be left wanting.
The design is decent and the build quality feels solid enough. Battery life could be better, but for most people who listen for only an hour or two at a time, the 10 hours should prove sufficient.
Hands-free functionality is available, albeit at a poor quality.
With plenty of features, the Groov-e Elite do a decent job at the price – but sound quality is unlikely to live up to the expectations of true audiophiles.