JBL Tune 500BT: Still the Best Budget JBL Headphones?

The JBL Tune 500BT is an affordable pair of wireless headphones and it comes with some decent features. However, in a market occupied by a lot of new affordable audio brands, are they still worth spending money on?

We’re going to take a look at the headphones, and see what they have to offer – let’s get started!


The 500 BTs feature a foldable design, as with most other modern headphones, making them compact and easy to carry around when travelling. The earcups are designed to swivel to be more flexible, however, they are a bit small compared to the earcups on other wireless headphones.

Of course, the fit will be a bit subjective matter depending on who’s using it. In my case, the earcups were a bit small so I had to take quick breaks when wearing them for prolonged periods.

The headphones come with a micro-USB charging port, and to be honest a USB-C port would have been a much better connectivity feature. They come in blue, black, pink, and white.

Control Set-up

The 500 BTs come with your usual controls, featuring power, volume, and play buttons, which are located on the right earpiece. The centre button is used to play and pause music, as well as answer and end your phone calls. A quick double-press brings up the assistant function, while holding down either of the volume buttons can play the next or previous track on your playlist.

One downside is that the 500BTs are not compatible with the JBL companion app for smartphones, however, that is to be expected considering the £40-50 price tag of the headphones.

A neat feature that JBL included is the ability to connect two devices simultaneously to the headphones, and you will be able to quickly switch between both devices by holding down the volume up and the assistant button.

Do they Sound Good?

The JBL Tune 500BTs have a bass-rich sound, which is to be expected from most JBL products. It’s nicely balanced so the lower frequencies do not overpower the mids and highs while listening to music.

It should be noted that there’s no ANC on the headphones or any transparency modes for that matter. Given the “over-ear” design of the product though, it’s pretty much enough to drown out most sounds from the outside and let you focus on listening to your music.

The headphones also come with built-in microphones so you’ll be able to use them for phone calls, and they do sound clear for the most part. The headphones feature decent battery performance. They can last up to 16 hours on a single charge, and if you do drain them down to zero, it takes around two hours to fully charge them.

Should You Get Them?

For the price they come at, the JBL Tune 500 BT headphones are a decent choice if you’re after a relatively inexpensive pair of wireless (albeit older) headphones. Good sound quality, decent battery life, and compatibility with smart assistant functions are certainly nice features to have for not much cash.

However, some considerations are the lack of USB-C, active noise cancelling, and a design that may feel a bit too cramped for long-term usage (at least for some folks). However, if you really must have a JBL-branded pair of headphones, then these are worth looking into.

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