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JBL Charge 5 Portable Bluetooth Speaker

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What's New?!

It’s hard to fix what isn’t broken, but somehow they keep doin’ it with their latest gem, the JBL Charge 5. While the Charge 4 (2019) is still a GREAT speaker, especially with all of the ways to customize them at JBL.com, the Charge 5 has some big improvements. On the other hand, one change, in particular, may not be good for some of the current JBL owners out there.

     Before we get to that, here are the 4 main improvements from the Charge 4 model to the Charge 5:

JBL Charge 4 vs Charge 5: Biggest Upgrades

JBL Charge 4 Portable Bluetooth Speaker Snow Camo

Charge 4

JBL Charge 5 Portable Bluetooth Speaker - Camo

Charge 5

BLUETOOTH VERSION

4.2

5.1

WATER/DUST RESISTANCE​

IPX7

IP67

WATER/DUST RESISTANCE​​

1.9" x 3.5" Woofer​

2" x 3.5" Woofer

0.8" Tweeter

TOTAL POWER OUTPUT (RMS)​

30 Watts​

40 Watts​

JBL CHARGE 5

JBL Charge 4 vs Charge 5 Outdoor Portable Bluetooth Speaker
JBL Charge 5 Outdoor Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Specs

  • Bluetooth v5.1
  • USB Type-C charge port
  • USB-A Out power port
  • 30W woofer, 10W Tweeter
  • 20-hour battery life (7,500mAh Battery)
  • IP67 water and dust resistance rating
  • 60Hz – 20kHz frequency response
  • 52mm – 90mm woofer, 20mm tweeter
  • Color options: red, gray, navy, teal, black, and camouflage
  • Dimensions: 8.7 x 3.76 x 3.67 inches
  • Weight: 2.11 lbs (0.96 kg)

Pros

  • 40 Watts of total output power
  • 20 Hours of playback from the HUGE 27Wh (7,500 mAh) Li-Po battery
  • USB Out port for charging phones, watches, earbuds, and other mobile devices
  • Pair 2 for stereo mode multiple PartyBoost-enabled JBL speakers for multi-room/indoor/outdoor parties using the JBL Portable app
  • IP67 rating and it floats for extra security

Cons

  • No built-in microphone for speaker calls, FaceTime, Zoom, and other conferencing
  • JBL devices don’t use iPhone lighting charging connection like Beats
JBL-Charge-5-Bluetooth-Speaker-and-iPhone-XS-Max
JBL Charge 5 and iPhone XS Max

JBL CHARGE 4

JBL Charge 4 Portable Bluetooth Speaker Snow Camo
JBL Charge 4 Portable Bluetooth Speaker Snow Camo

Specs

  • Bluetooth v5.1
  • USB Type-C charge port
  • USB-A Out power port
  • 30W Driver (1.9″ x 3.5″)
  • 20-hour battery life (7,800mAh Battery)
  • IPX7 water and dust resistance rating
  • 60Hz – 20kHz frequency response
  • Color options: Black, Blue, Grey, Green, Pink, Red, Mustard, White, Teal, Gold, and Camouflage
  • Dimensions: 8.66 x 3.74 x 3.66 inches
  • Weight: 2.1 lbs (0.96 kg)

Pros

  • 30 Watts of total output power
  • 20 Hours of playback from the HUGE 7,800 mAh Li-Po battery
  • USB Out port for charging phones, watches, earbuds, and other mobile devices
  • Pair 2 for stereo mode multiple JBL Connect+ compatible speakers for multi-room/indoor/outdoor parties
  • IPX7 rating and it floats for extra security (No dust rating like Charge 5)

Cons

  • JBL Connect-enabled speakers don’t work with their new and almost identicle PartyBoost feature
  • No built-in microphone for speaker calls, FaceTime, Zoom, and other conferencing
  • JBL devices don’t use iPhone lighting charging connection like Beats
JBL-Charge-4-Best-Portable-Bluetooth-Speaker-Pinterest
JBL Charge 4 Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Conclusion

     The JBL Charge 5 keeps the Charge series in the #1 spot in the world of portable Bluetooth speakers. Its mix of compact size, premium sound, rugged durability, and luxury features (like the built-in power bank for charging mobile devices like phones, watches, and more), make it essential for music lovers on-the-go.

JBL Charge 5 - Control Buttons
JBL Charge 5 - Control Buttons

JBL DISconnect+

     My only frustration with JBL’s new PartyBoost-enabled speakers, like the Charge 5, is that they aren’t compatible with their old JBL Connect+ speakers, like the Charge 4. Just like PartyBoost, you could connect 2 for stereo sound or up to 100 for multi-room audio.  Even though it’s not a deal-breaker, it’s REALLY annoying that they couldn’t find a way to make it work together. 

      Here is the full list of JBL PartyBoost-enabled speakers:

Worth The Upgrade?

     Even as a Charge 4 owner, the Bluetooth v5.1 upgrade and new dual-speaker setup, is more than enough reason to upgrade. The Bluetooth range is AMAZING, and the jump in sound quality is bigger and clearer than any previous JBL Charge model.  

     Plus, there’s not a huge difference in price, so check out the price and see if it fits your budget. 

JBL-Charge-5-Bluetooth-Speaker---Outdoor-Gardening
JBL Charge 5 Premium Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker
  • Post last modified:October 13, 2021