JBL brings its touchscreen smart case to three new wireless earbud models

The company also debuts an open-ear Soundgear Sense model at CES 2024.

JBL Live Beam 3 (JBL)

Last year in Las Vegas, JBL showed off a set of true wireless earbuds that featured a touchscreen-equipped "smart case," but it was only available on that model. For CES 2024, the company is expanding the availability for the fancy charging accessory across three new earbud designs, while giving it a slight design update in the process. The Live Buds 3, Live Beam 3 and Live Flex 3 all feature customizable adaptive noise cancellation, LDAC support for high-res listening, six mics for calls, wireless charging and multipoint Bluetooth connectivity.

The difference between the three is primarily design and fit. The Live Buds 3 are the more "traditional" style of earbuds while the Live Beam 3 and Live Flex 3 are both AirPods-like stick buds. What's more, the Beam 3 completely seal off your ears while the Flex 3 are a more open-style option. The Flex 3 are also IP54 rated while the other two are IP55 and they pack in larger 12mm drivers where the Buds 3 and Beam 3 have 10mm components. Aside from design, the trio differs on battery life too. The Live Buds 3 give you 10 hours of use with active noise cancellation (ANC) off with three full charges in the case. The Live Beam 3 last up to 12 hours with ANC off, plus they offer another three charges via the case. Lastly, the Live Flex 3 provides 10 hours of use with four full charges in the case.

All three models in the Live 3 earbuds series will be available for $199.95 starting this summer. The company is planning to add LE audio for Bluetooth 5.3 to all three via an over-the-air update after launch.

JBL Soundgear Sense

If you prefer earbuds that sit just outside of your ears, JBL's new Soundgear Sense will beam in music and podcasts without completely blocking the outside world. 16.2mm drivers power the audio for the over-the-ear hook design and JBL includes a detachable neckband if you need it. Plus, those ear hooks are adjustable to help you fine-tune the fit. The Soundgear Sense are IP54 rated against water and dust, with four microphones for calls and Bluetooth multipoint connectivity for added convenience. The Soundgear Sense will be available for $149.95 when they start shipping in March.

And if wired USB-C earbuds are more your thing, JBL has a new option there too. The Tune 310C has a three-button, in-line remote for playback and call controls alongside high-resolution listening powered by a built-in DAC (digital-to-analog converter). There's also an onboard mic for calls and EQ presets for customizing the sound profile. The Tune 310C will be available in March for $24.95.

We're reporting live from CES 2024 in Las Vegas from January 6-12. Keep up with all the latest news from the show here.

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