Puro Sound Labs JuniorJams – Review 2021
The Puro Sound Labs JuniorJams hit a number of sweet spots for kid-friendly headphones. Sonically, they feature a volume-limited wireless experience that still delivers solid bass depth, so that their relatively low volume doesn’t feel like a punishment to your child. There’s also a cable included for wired listening, and it too limits volume levels. At $ 69.99, the price is slightly high for this category, but the JuniorJams certainly aren’t the most expensive kids’ headphones we’ve tested, and they offer the best value for the price. This earns them our Editors ‘Choice award for kids’ headphones.
A Fun, Versatile Design
Available in blue / black, green / white, pink / white, or teal / white, the supra-aural (on-ear) JuniorJams have small earcups that should fit kids and teens just fine, and even adults, provided the headband is loosened significantly. The models with white headbands tend to look a little more like kids’ headphones, while the pair with a black headband and blue earcups resembles something closer to a typical adult model.
The earpads are comfortable when the headphone tension is properly adjusted, but if the band is too tight, the pads can exert uncomfortable pressure, so it’s important to fit it just right for your child. The wraparound vegan leather on the headband and earcups offsets the cheap plastic feeling on the rest of the headphones. Internally, 40mm dynamic drivers deliver the audio; the headphones are compatible with Bluetooth 4.2.
The left earcup houses a power switch, which also puts the headphones in Bluetooth pairing mode. The audio cable connection can be found on the left earcup, as well. The right earcup’s side panel houses volume up / down buttons, a play / pause button, and a status LED that blinks when paired. There’s also a micro USB port here for charging, as well as daisy-chaining two pairs of headphones. The play / pause button handles incoming calls and track navigation as well â tap twice to skip forward or three times to go back a track.
The audio is restricted to 85dB, both when streaming audio via Bluetooth and when the included cable is connected. (Make sure you have the cable connected in the proper direction, as the ends look identical; there are arrows on it to guide you.) The cable lacks an inline remote or mic.
You also get a USB-A-to-micro-USB charging cable, a micro-USB-to-micro-USB cable for daisy-chaining two pairs of headphones, and a drawstring nylon pouch the headphones can fold down into for easy storage .
Puro Sound Labs estimates the JuniorJams’s battery life to be roughly 22 hours, but your results will vary with your volume levels. There’s an auto-off function that kicks in after 10 minutes of no connection, which is very useful, since the power switch can easily be left in on mode accidentally. I’m guilty of this mistake, but was glad to see the headphones still had juice when I powered them back up.
JuniorJams Audio Performance
The following tracks may not be on your child’s playlist, but they’re part of our regular testing suite and paint a clear picture of what the drivers are capable of. On tracks with intense sub-bass content, like The Knife’s âSilent Shout,â the JuniorJams deliver a strong sense of low-frequency response without overwhelming the mix and without distorting.
Bill Callahan’s âDrover,â a track with far less deep bass in the mix, gives us a better sense of the JuniorJams’s general sound signature. When the headphones are properly placed, the drums have a lovely, full-sounding depth. The acoustic strums and higher-register percussion on this track are crisp, and generally speaking, this is a balanced, rich, and bright sound signature.
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On Jay-Z and Kanye West’s âNo Church in the Wild,â the kick drum loop receives enough high-mid presence for its attack to retain its punchiness, while the vinyl crackle and hiss in the background also take a step forward. The sub-bass synth hits are delivered with a solid sense of depth without going overboard, and the vocals are delivered cleanly and clearly, with perhaps a bit of extra sibilance. The JLab JBuddies Pro Wireless offer less brightness than the JuniorJams do, and a bit more bass.
The JuniorJams deliver a great experience for movie audio, as well. The bass depth in Blade Runner 2049 was impressive, but never got in the way of clear dialogue.
The built-in mic offers solid intelligibility. Using the Voice Memos app on an iPhone, we could clearly understand every word we recorded, though the signal is a little faint and there’s some high-frequency hiss in the background.
Kid-Friendly Headphones That Put Audio First
At a glance, it can seem like the Puro Sound Labs JuniorJams are a bit overpriced, but the sonic experience they deliver is impressive. Even at low volumes, the audio feels full and clear for music and movies. And unlike some competing models, the 85dB limit volume is always imposed â there’s no switch as there is on the $ 35 JLab JBuddies Pro Wireless. Ultimately, the JuniorJams offer the best value for the price, with excellent sound quality and no way to raise the volume to dangerous levels. That means you can feel comfortable your child is listening to safe, high-quality audio, and that earns the JuniorJams our Editors’ Choice award.