JBL Flip 4 Waterproof Portable Speaker Review

JBL Flip 4 Review

JBL managed to produce one of the most successful Bluetooth speakers, called the JBL Flip series. The popularity is due to the affordable price and fantastic musical performances. The JBL Flip 4 is an older model but still capable of standing next to today’s competition.

PROS:

  • Nice design
  • Waterproof
  • Loud with good bass

CONS:

  • The sound could be more detailed
  • No track navigation buttons
  • 3.5 mm aux cable not included
  • JBL Connect+ doesn’t work with older models

Design

The JBL Flip 4 comes in six different color options: black, gray, blue, red, teal, and white. The cylindrical shape of the speaker measures 2.6 x 6.9 x 2.7 inches (HWD), weighing 1.1 pounds.
Although Flip 4 looks similar to Flip 3 (released in 2016), it is slightly bigger, heavier, and covered in more durable fabric. While Flip 3 is splashproof, the newer version is fully waterproof. It is IPX7 waterproof, which means not only that it can survive submerged for 30 minutes in one meter of water, but is also sealed against sand and dust. So taking it outdoors or on the beach is not a problem. Keep in mind that Flip 4 doesn’t float like UE Wonderboom, so if you drop it in a pool or sea, it will sink to the bottom.
Under the cloth grille covering almost the whole speaker, there are dual 40 mm drivers, 8 watts each. For better bass response, there are two passive radiators on each end of the speaker.
The bottom of Flip 4 has a rubber lining that prevents the speaker from sliding on a flat surface due to the bass vibrations and also angles the drivers upward.
Flip 4 can stand vertically or lay horizontally and comes with a removable lanyard if you want to hang the speaker.
There are rubber buttons for Bluetooth connection, play/pause, and volume up and down controls that work in sync with the mobile device’s volume on the edge of the grille. There are no buttons on the speaker for skipping tracks, so you have to do it on your mobile device. The play button also works as a speakerphone control.
There is a power button and JBL Connect+ button on the rubberized panel to link other Flip 4 speakers to a single sound source. You can link up to 100 Flip 4 speakers, which is terrific, but unfortunately, you can only connect other speakers with Connect+. So if you have Flip 3, you will not be able to connect it to Flip 4.
Then you have five indicator lights that show how much battery life is left.
The rubberized panel also houses the covered ports for the micro USB charging cable and 3.5 mm aux input. The USB charging cable comes with the speaker and has a good length. The 3.5 mm cable for the aux input doesn’t come with Flip 4, which is a shame, considering the speaker’s price.
JBL Flip 4 has a built0in speakerphone so that you can take calls. It also features echo-canceling for better voice clarity.
The Bluetooth connection (version 4.2) is strong and without drops even if 50 feet away and walls in between. The playback controls work well, and the buttons are clicky, and you know when you have pressed them.
The battery is 3000 mAh, and JBL claims the battery life is 12 hours, which is true if you use the device between 50 and 75 % of its max volume. If you play the speaker at 100% volume, the battery will finish much faster (about 4 hours). So if you plan to be on the beach all day long, keep that in mind.

Sound quality of JBL Flip 4

The JBL Flip 4 is not the most well-rounded speaker, but the sound quality is still pretty good. It is similar to the previous version of the speaker. The bass is strong, beefier than before, and doesn’t distort when volume levels are at the top.
The vocals are loud and clear, ideally backed up by guitars and percussion. Background instruments can get a bit faded, but not too much to become an issue.
The speaker gets loud, and the passive radiators on both ends of the speaker help cut any distortion while offering a sound great for parties.
The overall presentation is broad, which comes as a surprise from such a small speaker.

Verdict

The JBL Flip 4 is an excellent Bluetooth speaker with a rugged design, perfect to be portable and follow you wherever you go.
Even in 2021, Flip 4 is a good deal, with a good sound, light, and durable enough to be carried around.

JBL Flip 4 Waterproof Portable Speaker Review
JBL Flip 4 Waterproof Portable Speaker Review

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