Engineered for the extreme
As an audio innovation partner for some of Red Bull's athlete projects, Jabra has built a microphone engineered to perform in the most extreme environments.
As an audio innovation partner for some of Red Bull's athlete projects, Jabra has built a microphone engineered to perform in the most extreme environments.
Innovative technology meets
Red Bull Media House needed a bespoke microphone, which is still offering professional audio-quality despite of extreme athlete conditions, and wanted to work with Jabra because of our expertise and unique capabilities in sound. How did we accomplish this? Not by taking incremental steps. Instead, we went extreme.
Red Bull Media House needed a bespoke microphone that would offer professional-quality audio in extreme conditions, and approached Jabra because of our unique capabilities in sound. Forget ‘going big’. Instead, we went extreme.Discover more
We made something special with the Jabra X Mic, but the technology and
engineering behind it are a part of everything we do. The engineers who developed it,
are the same engineers who build the rest of our products.
Jabra engineers work somewhere unique. A facility that, under one roof, creates consumer, professional and medical-grade sound solutions – from the world’s most advanced true wireless sports earbuds, to the world’s most secure headsets for the office; from headphones with in-built heart rate monitors, to industry-leading hearing aids.
All of the expertise and know-how gained is at our engineers’ fingertips. And it’s not a new process, either. Jabra is part of a group that has almost 150 years experience in developing innovative communications solutions.
When you look at the Stelvio pass - Italy’s highest asphalted mountain road, complete with 12 road gaps and standing at 2,757 meters in altitude - do you feel a rush of adrenaline, as you imagine hearing the wind whipping past your face as you ski straight down it?
Freeski pro and Red Bull Athlete Bene Mayr did.
So he did it - road gaps and all. And thanks to the Jabra X Mic, you can experience it with him.
Bene Mayr enlisted a team of shapers to help him turn the stretch of mountain snaked by the road into a perfect slopestyle run.
The finished course - at 555 meters altitude from start to finish, and containing 12 road gaps in a total of 20 features - would give even the most experienced skier heart palpitations.
To make sure this incredible stunt was captured perfectly, we mounted a Jabra X Mic on Bene Mayr’s neck-scarf. Developed specifically for the Red Bull Athletes, this mic picks up every nuance of sound; from the crunch of the skis in the snow, to the sharp intakes of breath as the Freeski pro completes an air somersault and hits a stop sign with his skis.
What you won’t hear, is that whipping wind.
To complete the run, Bene Mayr also wore a pair of Jabra Elite Active 65t wireless headphones, which stayed firmly in place throughout the action.
Because when you’re hurtling down a mountain with a 45° incline, the last thing you need is to be worried about getting caught up in the wire for your headphones when listening to music.
With specially engineered technology, designed to filter out all unwanted sound - including wind noise - the Jabra X Mic produces superior quality audio without any of the distractions, so you can practically feel the adrenaline.
The resulting audio and footage is both breathtaking and heart-stopping in equal measure.
We purposely engineer products to elevate not just what you hear, but how you hear it. Our products are engineered to perform brilliantly – whatever situation you’re in.
The Jabra X Mic was engineered and initially tested at the Jabra Audio Lab in Denmark. We spent two years working on it with Red Bull Media House, and then it was taken out into the real world.
In total, we tested over 30 prototypes – putting them through their paces in the toughest, coldest, wettest, dirtiest places we could find. Not all of them made it back, but we learned, adapted, improved and tested again.
Jabra technology can handle wind-noise reduction to speeds of around 15kph – perfect for people using headphones for taking calls on the street, or for most of us when out doing sports.
For Max Stöckl Takes on Streif, we needed a microphone capable of picking up true sound when travelling at 120kph. We built a prototype and tested it on people riding motorbikes and electric bikes. This was way beyond the scope needed – but we didn’t have anyone on our team who could ski or ride a bicycle fast enough.
We went into our labs and reviewed the materials that would perform best – found, tested and proven by the Jabra innovation team, and then modified the shape of the microphone and tested its optimum position.
For many extreme sports, placing a microphone in the most obvious place (on a helmet) doesn’t give the best results – at high speeds, wind simply whips the sound back and away. For some athletes the chest is a better location.
Finding optimum placement is one thing, making it wireless is another. Red Bull athletes need technology free of troublesome wires that can catch on equipment and prevent a full range of motion.
So we further developed our digital technology and optimized its connection to a Bluetooth recorder – streaming sound directly from the Jabra X Mic. Then we further refined the microphone’s shape, and set about making it smaller and as unobtrusive as possible.
Built in to the Jabra X Mic is the same waterproof technology (Jabra-developed processing and sealing of materials) as found in the Jabra Elite Sport.
This includes ABS plastic, woven materials that provide a soft outer casing, and much, much more. It’s cutting-edge technology that’s stress tested with a grueling methodology at our dedicated facilities.
The Jabra X Mic puts you on the bike with Max, hurtling downward with bone-rattling bumps and stomach dropping lifts into the air
Meet Max. Blink and you’ll miss the Austrian mountain biker who travels the world on a quest to take two wheels on heart-stopping descents. Max Stöckl is no stranger to speed – he broke the land speed record for a bike when he reached 167.6kph in the Atacama Desert – and here you can see (and hear) him topping 100kph as he tears down the treacherous Streif ski run on Austria’s Hahnenkamm.
With the Jabra X Mic you hear every crunch of his bike’s 15mm spikes in the snow, along with every icy breath and adjustment of man and machine. What you won’t hear is the gusting wind that would normally drown out all other sound.
Only the most experienced skiers can hope to make it down the Hahnenkamm slopes – so Max decided to do it on a mountain bike. Jabra heard his call to adventure – and captured every decibel of it.
When Red Bull asked us to be the official audio partner for PlayStreets 2019, the most spectacular slopestyle freeskiing event of the year, we didn’t hesitate to say yes. Of course, we took along our Jabra X Mic, to bring you even closer to the action.
Aside from warm clothes, several of the athletes were also equipped with a pair of Jabra Elite Active 65t, designed to stay in place during even the most strenuous activity, and it doesn’t get much more strenuous than this.
The Jabra X Mic was born out of a desire to go one step further when capturing extreme athletes on film, so when Red Bull invited us to test it out on some of the freeskiers participating in their PlayStreets event, we couldn’t resist.
Watch the video above to experience every exhilarating detail, even down to the sound of the riders’ skis in the snow. That’s every scrape, slide, and drop in perfect detail, with no interfering wind or background noise.
Sam Baumgartner was competing at this year’s event, and we caught up with him before he hit the slopes to ask him how he stays focused. He told us: “It’s me, myself, the skies and the course. I don’t want coaches around me; I don’t want anyone around me. With the Jabra Elite Active 65t, it’s pretty easy – they are wireless. I Just focus all on myself, 100 per cent.”
Wondering just what Sam and his fellow freeskiers were listening to at this year’s Playstreets? Then you’ll be pleased to know that there’s an official playlist.
We’ve even included the playlist here, because we’re nice like that.
What can you hear as you prepare to jump off the top of the world?
The Jabra X Mic puts you right there with American world champion skier Daron Rahlves and rising Freeski star Jérémie Heitz, as they prepare to race each other in the most jaw-dropping slalom you’ve ever seen.
When it comes to audio testing, this is about as extreme as it gets. Are you ready to Race the Face?
The Hohberghorn in the Pennine Alps, Switzerland, is 4,129 meters above sea level. The face itself is almost vertical, shearing away from the summit like a cliff edge.
It takes a special kind of adrenaline junkie to even want to ski this thing, let alone slalom on its near-vertical face; it looks impossible. But if there’s one thing we’ve learned from our two years working with Red Bull and their athletes, it’s that ‘impossible’ is not a word they’re all that familiar with.
For this challenge, we wanted to capture the personal journeys of the athletes themselves, just as much as the action. And what better environment than this to test the Jabra X Mic than mounted on the snow jackets of these two amazing athletes, reaching new heights and colder temperatures than ever before?
We wanted to hear them putting in their Elite Active 65t headphones, designed to stay put even through the most challenging activities; to hear them talking to each other and the crew as they climbed the face, and the crunch of the ice as they make their way painstakingly upwards, using pickaxes to pull themselves up.
And, of course, to hear their exhilaration as they launched themselves downward into this never-before-seen backcountry slalom at truly astonishing speeds.
Seeing is believing but hearing is truly experiencing. Are you ready to see our superior audio quality being put to the test under extreme conditions?
When approached by Red Bull Media House to build a bespoke microphone to capture every decibel during extreme performance, we jumped at the opportunity.
We’re audio experts, with a proud history, so we gladly accepted the challenge of using audio to get people closer to the experience of racing around Red Bull’s Red Bull Ring in Spielberg in a KTM X-BOW.
We purposely engineer products to elevate, not just what you hear, but how you hear it. Our products are engineered to perform brilliantly – wherever you are.
Jabra technology can handle wind-noise reduction up to around 15kph. But Red Bull has athletes hit speeds of up to 120kph. So, we had to step things up a gear. After 2 years development and review in the labs, the mic was ready to be tested in the real world. To the extreme.
On July 11 2018 we headed to the Red Bull Ring race circuit at Spielberg, Austria to test our ‘next-gen mic’ against several other contenders. We placed the mic in a KTM X-BOW driven by Bernhard Auinger, a seasoned racer and Red Bull Ring’s Head of Driving Experience.
At 220km/h, the mic captured the clear distinction of the car gearing up to hit those extreme speeds and helping to bring those moments to life. We’re still working on a way to capture every nuance of sound at such extreme speeds. But this is what makes us audio pioneers.
We made something special with the Jabra X mic, but the technology and engineering behind it are a part of everything we do. Developed by the same engineers who build the rest of our products.
Technically superior sound in the most extreme conditions means superior sound for all users – whether you need amazing audio for music, sports, calls on the go, or collaboration in the busiest (and nosiest) offices.
Wherever life takes you, Jabra makes life sound better. We engineered it to be that way.
What do sailing and running have in common? You never stop. You always keep going. This is Sail & Run.
Record breaker Christian Schiester has set milestones in his ultrarunning career and now he has a new goal to circumnavigate the world. With the Jabra X Mic, you can hear every thunderstorm, sigh of exhaustion and triumph along his journey.
Having run over 160000km in his life, Christian Schiester’s career has taken him across deserts, through the Brazilian jungle and from Antarctica to the Himalayas.
So, after running around the world more than four times, what he did with the rest of his life was a big question for him. This is why Christian set out to circumnavigate the world along with his partner Daniela Bärnthaler, running in far flung locations and battling high seas to reach the most remote locations.
At Jabra, we’ve shared that same pioneering spirit for the past 150 years and wanted to join the adventure with Christian and Daniela as they set out to accomplish this massive feat.
Capturing their journey with the Jabra X Mic, we had the opportunity to test our engineering in new waters, and another extreme environment. Engineered to capture every subtle sound, the X Mic proved itself on this adventure across open oceans. Hear Christian talking through high winds, thunderstorms and calm waters as he sails the open oceans, and we join him on his journey around the world.
Enduring long periods at sea, Christian needed a host of technology to stay connected. Using Jabra Elite Active 65t earbuds for his running and Jabra Move Style Edition headphones to relax, we made sure that there was music for every moment throughout Sail & Run. The couple also used the Jabra Speak 710 to stay in touch with friends and family from afar, and BlueParrott wireless headsets to communicate on the yacht while sailing.
Two years into his seven-year circumnavigation, the Austrian ultrarunner has encountered thunderstorms, doldrums and exhaustion, but the beauty of nature has changed his life forever. We’re glad to be a part of this journey.
That’s why we engineered a wireless microphone designed to block out excessive wind noise – tailor-made for Red Bull athletes. Together with Red Bull Media House, we take you one-step closer to being there with the athletes who push themselves to the very limit.
As an audio innovation partner for some of Red Bull’s incredible athlete projects, like Max Stöckl Takes on Streif, we built a microphone engineered to perform in the most extreme environments. The Jabra X Mic brings superior audio that lets you get as close as possible to the action.
On July 11, 2018, the microphone was again pushed to the very limit. Used in a KTM X-BOW at Spielberg with Bernhard Auinger, Veteran Car Racing Driver and Head of Driving Experience Red Bull Ring, we tested the sound of this “next-gen mic” against several other microphones.
A real world “reality check”, the Jabra X Mic once again had its engineering excellence put to the test.
When you look at the city, what do you see? Fabio Wibmer sees a playground, and normal rules of engagement don’t apply. This is Wibmer’s Law.
Mountain and trial bike athlete Fabio Wibmer loves a good obstacle. So much so, in fact, that he set out to turn four major Austrian cities into his own personal obstacle course.
When we heard about this project, we thought it sounded like a great opportunity to test out our Jabra X Mic in yet another extreme environment, so we joined Fabio as he and his bike conquered cars and concrete, steps and streets, to escape the city and end up in the lush, green countryside.
This is exactly the kind of challenge that Red Bull had in mind when they first approached us, asking if we could build them a microphone capable of capturing every nuance of sound in extreme environments.
We mounted the mic on Fabio’s clothes, and it didn’t disappoint. We hear his rear tire bouncing off the concrete, the click-click-click of his hub, and his steady breathing, as he works to keep the bike under his expert control.
Fabio, who wore a pair of secure-fitting Jabra Elite Sport earbuds to allow him to enjoy music during filming, says that for him, biking is a kind of escape: “The life of society has become a really hectic and stressful one. When I get on my bike though, I am able to escape this chaos for a while.”
As engineers of products designed to help people block out the world around them, that sentiment really resonated with us, and so we set out to capture that feeling of freedom that Fabio experiences when his feet are on the pedals.
Our unique digital signal processing algorithms, which allow the Jabra X Mic to identify and filter out almost all unwanted background noise, enabled us to do just that.
The resulting audio is eerily quiet.
No traffic. No wind noise.
Just one man and his bike, amidst the chaos of the city.