Review: JBL Flip 4 Vs. Flip 3 – Noisylabs

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Iteration.

It’s how we got from the original iPhone to the latest version we have now. Now that we think about it, there has been so many versions we don’t know what version the iPhone is on right now.

For the JBL, this is how it has gone from 3 to 4.

But the kicker is iteration doesn’t always mean better which is why we’re comparing the JBL Flip 4 and the Flip 3.

People complained when the iPhone moves onto a new version, what makes this Bluetooth speaker any different.

The JBL Flip 4 vs. Flip 3 is an honest comparison of what we objectively think of both. It’s also a head-to-head comparison. By the end of this post, you’ll have our unfiltered opinion on which Bluetooth speaker is better.

We’re peeling each product layer by layer finding out which is the better overall product.

 

PACKAGING

The JBL 4 comes in vertical boxing. It’s also slimmer. Once you get the package, you’ll see a picture of the JBL 4 right on the front. There’s no surprise here because JBL as a brand always displays the product right on the front.

Another distinct feature of the packaging is its height. This is because the JBL 4 is taller than the last version. A majority of the packaging depends on the size of the product (duh). After this, the rest of the packaging displays the features of the JBL 4.

The JBL 3, on the other hand, is very similar to the JBL 4 when it comes to packaging. It’s shorter and bigger but all the noticeable features are put on the box. Even the actual image of the product is placed on the front similar to the JBL 4.

The JBL 4 vs. JBL 3 debate doesn’t sway in either direction when it comes to packaging. Both are different but don’t differ in any way which is meaningful.

 

DESIGN

A design has multiple meanings. The first part is size dimensions. Other factors to design are color and overall size and shape.

To start off, let’s talk about the JBL 3.

The Bluetooth portable speaker’s dimensions are 9.1 x 3.5 x 3.5 inches. Obviously, there are 3 numbers here, the real question is what does it mean. Well, the first number, 9.1 represents width. So the JBL 3 is 9.1 inches wide.

The second number, 3.5 represents length. The length of the JBL 3 is 3.5 inches.

The final number of the dimensions represents tallness. We know. You already read that the length is 3.5 inches. What’s the difference between length and tallness.

Length, when it comes to cylinders is a measurement that’s horizontal. In other words, it’s a horizontal measure where the object being measured is parallel to the ground, or surface.

Tallness is a vertical measurement. It’s all about measuring the distance from bottom to top, or vice-versa.

Now that you know how to read dimensions, the JBL 4’s dimensions come in at 2.76 x 6.89 x 2.68 inches. A major difference between both portable Bluetooth speakers is their width and height which further explains the packaging.

If we’re talking about width, the JBL 3 is definitely bigger by 6 plus inches. But the height advantage goes to the JBL 4. As for size advantages, there’s no clear winner because it’s all about preference.

One slight advantage width can have is more surround sound. But surround sound depends more on the speaker’s power than the width.

Build

Flip 3 vs. Flip 4 are also similar in build. And what we mean by build are not just aesthetics. What we mean by the build is the question of “how does the user feel holding it?”

This section could also be called user experience but that’s too broad. To be honest, build is also pretty broad, but we stuck with it because we don’t know what other word to describe this section.

If we were to pick one advantage for build, it would go to the JBL 3. And the reason for that is the JBL 3 has a base where it prevents it from rolling away. Now sure, you can argue the JBL 4 being baseless adds to its aesthetic, but the base provides peace of mind.

If our waterproof  Bluetooth speaker is near the pool and we know it’s stationary, we wouldn’t worry about it.

Remember when we were talking about width? Well, this is where that width comes in handy. A wider base is harder to move. Imagine a short and big basketball player. It’s hard to move them out of position because they have so much leverage compared to a taller, slender player.

This is basically a visual comparison of the JBL 3 vs. JBL 4 waterproof speakers.

The winner when it comes to build is the JBL 3 hands down.

Looking at the smaller details, we can say the JBL 4 is easier to hold. Its slim frame makes it easy to grab and throw in your bag. But that’s the only small advantage we’d give to the JBL 4.

Weight

Both are easy to carry around, hence why they’re portable. For reference, the JBL 3 comes in at an estimate of 1 pound. The JBL 4 comes in at 1.13 pounds. No clear winner here as their weight is nearly identical unless you weigh them which would be pretty funny.

Color

There’s no winner for color. Both versions provide different color combinations for the consumer.

FEATURES

Let’s start with the obvious when it comes to features and that’s the woven mesh fabric that both portable speakers display. This woven mesh fabric makes it waterproof and durable.

One difference between JBL 4 and JBL 3 is the top of the JBL 4 has rubber on top. This could be for durability or aesthetics but it’s a difference that needs to be mentioned.

The biggest difference for features is JBL 4 is actually waterproof in comparison to JBL 3. With an IPX rating of 7, you won’t damage it if you completely dump it in water. The same can’t be said for the JBL 3. The most it can handle is water being sprinkled on it.

But that’s not the only reason why the JBL 4 is durable. What creates distance between the JBL 4 in comparison to the 3 is the 4 is weatherproof. Meaning you can put the 4 in sand, rain, dirt, and it’ll come out fine.

2 other features separate the 4 from the 3. Those 2 are Connect+ technology and voice search.

Connect+ technology enables the user to connect to 100 other Connect+ speakers. This feature is similar to Airplay connecting to multiple speakers.

But let’s not forget that the 3 still has Connect. Just not the plus version.

Other than this, the JBL 4 also has the ability voice assistant integration with Siri and Google Home.

Besides Connect+ and voice integration, both portable Bluetooth speakers have speakerphones. By the way, did we mention both speakers have Bluetooth?

 

BATTERY

The battery is one of the most impressive features of the JBL 4. It’s powered by a 3,000mAh rechargeable Li-ion battery which offers 12 hours of playing time.

If you play it at 60% capacity for its volume then it’ll only play for 6 hours. But 6 hours is still a long time considering people get tired partying after 3-4 hours. Isn’t that why the club usually starts getting busy around 11 and ends at 2?

The JBL 3 isn’t any slouch either. It’s running time is 10 hours which is nothing to scoff at but obviously 12>10.

A downside to both speakers is it takes 3 and a half hours for the speakers to fully charge.

 

SOUND

Both speakers contain dual passive radiators so there’s no separation in terms of competition there.

If we want to find out which speaker provides more quality sound then we should quantify it. We need a way to measure performance and the way it’s possible through sound is using Hertz.

Hertz measures frequency and frequency is waves per a cycle. More specifically, a frequency is x number of waves per second. A frequency determines the pitch of a sound.

Both speakers can go up to 20,000 Hertz but JBL 4 ranges farther back. The JBL 4 can go from 70-20,000 Hertz while the 3 can go from 85-20,000 Hertz.

Another way to quantify sound is through wattage. But both Bluetooth speakers have the same wattage power so there is no winner in that department.

Where there is separation is in the decibel department.

While the JBL 3 has less than 80 decibels, the 4 has about 80 decibels. And if you didn’t know, a decibel is a measurement of the power level of an electrical signal.

The winner is clear. The JBL 4 takes 2 out of the 3 categories for sound.

BREAKDOWN

 

 

Pros:

Cons:

 

  • Design
        • Features
        • Battery
        • Sound

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