Jabra claims AI-powered noise-cancelling headphones can tune out a passing train

Anyone who has used ANC headphones in a noisy environment will know that active noise-cancellation makes a big difference. But Danish company Jabra claims that it’s latest headphones go one better, using AI to tune out specific types of noise …

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Standard ANC works by using external microphones to detect surrounding sounds. The headphones then play an inverted version of the soundwaves along with the music, and this cancels out the external noise.

High-end ANC headphones from the likes of Bose and Sony do this extremely well, but Jabra believes that the use of AI can do an even better job. Gizmodo explains.

The new Jabra Elite 85h come with 40-millimetre drivers, six microphones (four for ANC and two hybrids for ANC and phone calls), as well as hands-free voice assistant control. Jabra also says they get 32 hours of battery life which would blow a lot of the competition out of the water. But the AI-powered noise cancelling seems to be the star of the new headphones’ show. Using technology from the German AI company audEERING, the Elite 85h can detect over 6,000 sound characteristics and filter out the noise more specifically. According to Jabra, that means these cans know when a loud train is coming down the tracks and specifically tunes out the loud train sound.

Jabra does have a decent track-record as one of the big names in high-end headsets for phone use, and its Jabra Move $99 headphones (less on Amazon) offer amazingly good sound quality for the price. That being the case, I’m certainly interested to try the Elite 85h for myself, and will aim to review them.

The Elite 85h will be available in four colors – black, gray, gold and navy – and offer both USB-C and 3.5mm connectivity alongside wireless.

The Jabra Elite 85h will cost $300, putting them in a similar price bracket to the two market-leading ANC headphones: the Bose QC35 and Sony WH-1000XM3. Pre-orders are expected to begin in March.

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Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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