Portable Bluetooth speakers can offer a hell of a lot of options these days. Whether you want something small and cheap, something that is a glorified stage speaker, or something in the middle, you can really choose from the lot. Well, JBL has released their latest Boombox, which is a bit of a jack of all trades, and it’s a damn fine speaker.
The JBL Boombox can get incredibly loud and uncomfortable. Like, I don’t want to be in the room because my deaf ass’s ears are hurting loud. For a portable speaker, that is no easy feat. But loud isn’t everything, because we have all heard distorted crackling from a speaker that shouldn’t be playing sound as loud as it does.
Well, the good news is that when I cranked the Boombox 3 up, the sound was excellent. Honestly, I was happily listening to it, from another room, and I was consistently blown away by the crisp sound quality that this beast can pump out.
Another important factor is the battery life. Your jams down at the beach are going to end pretty quickly if a speaker only has an hour of music to pump out. Fortunately, the Boombox 3 offers up to 24 hours of battery life. In my testing, I got pretty close to that. It would have been between 21 and 23 hours total spread over a few days. Keeping in mind that during that time I was playing around with the volume a lot, connecting and disconnecting from multiple devices, and playing around with settings. That is a damn good feat for a speaker like this and if you are pumping music for more than 24 hours without a charge, go to sleep man.
It did take hours to fully charge though which was a little bit disappointing, but far from a deal breaker.
One thing I do like about the JBL range is the simple and chunky design. This one is no exception. The massive handle over the top is functionally useful and goes with the aesthetic. Simple buttons on the front do what they need to, and it isn’t overly burdensome.
You can plug a 3.5mm cable in the back, but that’s going to limit your functionality a bit if you want to move it around. That and if you want it on the side of the pool as you don’t want your speaker dragging your fancy new phone to the bottom of the pool taking advantage of the sweet waterproofing on one of those two things.
The speaker doesn’t give too many options outside of volume up or down, and connects via Bluetooth or cable. The app lets you play with basic settings like bass but not much more. This isn’t a massive deal for someone like me, but for the audiophiles out there this could be an issue.
A heavy but fantastic portable speaker
For $669.95 this is far from the cheapest speaker. If you are looking for something simple to use, that pumps out loud and high quality sound then it may be worth a look. The battery life and sturdiness of the speaker makes it a pretty damn good investment. Remember to bend at the hips, not your back. I mean it’s not THAT heavy, but can you blame a man for not missing a chance at a comment like that?