Some of the best Bluetooth speakers are made by JBL. The Charge 4 and Flip 5 are two of its most popular models.
They’re both budget-friendly speakers with great sound that are built to last. They’re built for life outdoors, so they’ll not only survive being tossed in a bag and carried around, but they’ll also withstand the elements. This is ideal for a day at the beach or a camping trip.
But which is the best option for you? Both the JBL Charge 4 and the JBL Flip 5 received five stars from us, so whichever you choose will deliver excellent results. However, there are some distinctions between them. These differences, while subtle, will make a big difference if you’re using the speaker every day.
Price comparison between JBL Charge 4 and JBL Flip 5
The Charge 4 cost £140 ($150, AU$255) when we first tested it, but it’s now around £100 ($130, AU$180).
The Flip 5 is the newest of the two speakers, but it is also the less expensive: it was initially £100 ($100, AU$139), but it is currently roughly £90.
It’s not a big discount, but there is still a savings. And it’s a great deal for one of the best Bluetooth speakers available.
Battery life of JBL Charge 4 vs JBL Flip 5
A Bluetooth speaker’s battery life can make or break it. Because they’re wireless, they free you from the constraints of being tethered to a power outlet or the device you’re listening to music on. If the battery dies, you’ll need to find a power outlet or, at the very least, a portable power bank as soon as possible.
The Flip 5 has a 12-hour battery life on a single charge, and thanks to its USB-C port, it only takes 2.5 hours to fully charge from empty to full.
However, the Charge 4 easily defeats this. One of its strong suits, as its name suggests, is battery. It has a whopping 20 hours of run time on a full charge.
Design and construction of JBL Charge 4 vs JBL Flip 5
The Flip 5 and Charge 4 are both IPX7-rated, which means they can be submerged in water for up to 30 minutes. However, the Charge 4 has a charging port cover, which provides additional protection.
Both are large and sturdy, but still light enough to carry in a bag.
If you’re on the move, you should be aware of the significant weight difference. The Charge 4 is 960 grams, while the Flip 5 is only 540 grams. For those on the go, the latter option may be preferable. Because they have bass radiators on each end, both speakers work best when placed horizontally.
Features of the JBL Charge 4 and JBL Flip 5
Both speakers have a PartyBoost mode that allows you to connect two compatible speakers in stereo or up to 100 speakers to create a massive sound.
However, the Charge 4 has a Connect+ feature that essentially does the same thing but with older JBL speakers. If you already have an older JBL speaker and want to upgrade, the Charge 4 might be the better choice.
The Charge 4 also has a significant advantage: it can charge your phone. It not only has a long run time, but it can also charge your phone, tablet, or anything else that charges via USB from a 5V supply, thanks to its massive battery. It’s perfect for days and nights spent away from civilization.
However, these are fundamentally simple speakers. They don’t have Wi-Fi or native voice assistant support, and the app is fairly basic. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that. Simple products that do one thing well are our favourite.
The verdict on JBL Charge 4 vs JBL Flip 5
The competition between two of the greatest Bluetooth speakers was always going to be close. We had no clue, though, that it would be that close.
It’s three to two on the Flip 5. It wins in our book because of its superior sound, greater portability, and lower price.
However, the Charge 4 is still an excellent speaker. It has a massive battery that lasts nearly a day and can charge your phone while you’re away from home, which could be a deal-breaker for campers.