JBL Xtreme Review
The interest in portable speakers is increasing, especially in durable devices that can handle demanding ways of life. Some speakers have unique features that enable them to stand out from the crowd, such as JBL Xtreme.
JBL Xtreme resembles the Infinity One, probably because both companies exist under the name of the audio giant such as Harman, but with better details in design, buttons, and ports.
- Powerful bass
- Built-in speakerphone
- Stylish design
- Booming sound
- Can pair with three devices at once
- Too much digital signal processing
The JBL Xtreme looks like a torpedo with its cylindrical shape. The speaker’s dimensions are 4.9 x 11.1 x 4.8 inches (HWD), and the weight is 4.7 pounds. Although it is a portable speaker, it is still quite heavy.
The exterior is excellent, thanks to the grille that looks like a mixture of cloth and metal and can be in three colors (red, blue, and black).
Under the grille, there are dual 63 mm woofers and 35 mm tweeters responsible for the audio.
You will find the controls for the power, volume, play/pause, and Bluetooth pairing on the top of the speaker. The volume of the speaker works in sync with the volume of the mobile device. The Bluetooth pairing button is for connecting other JBL speakers with the same sound source, while the play/pause button is for track navigation and to answer or end phone calls.
There are rubber feet for stability on the speaker’s base and on the back end, connections for the power adapter, two USB ports, and a 3.5 mm aux input. The audio cable for the aux input does not come with the speaker. Using a zipper, JBL has found an exciting way to protect the ports when not in use.
The setup for Bluetooth is effortless. Although there is no NFC, it connects quickly. When pairing, you can connect up to three devices at the same time. They automatically reconnect when turned on. The battery life is about 15 hours (provided by 10 000 mAh battery), but it all depends on how you use it and the volume levels. If you listen to lower volumes, you might squeeze in an extra hour or two. The charging takes about 3.5 hours for the battery to reach the maximum.
If not being used for 30 minutes, the speaker shuts down or goes in standby mode if connected to a power source.
The JBL Xtreme is splashproof, and you can wash it under running water if it is filthy, but don’t submerge it underwater.
Sound quality JBL Xtreme
JBL Xtreme has an excellent and powerful bass response, one of the most intense among portable Bluetooth speakers.
Another great thing about this speaker is that there is no distortion at high volume levels, and the bass does not overshadow other frequencies. Because of the digital signal processing (DSP), the bass sounds even more potent at moderate volume levels than at absolute maximum.
Vocals sound rich and deep, while the treble is crisp and clear. The bass is vibrant and shows depth and dimension. In general, Xtreme handles well different genres of music. Jazz and hip-hop have a heavy bass with warm mids. Rock has highs without any distortion at high volume levels.
The DSP has an essential role in sculpting the sound by balancing the lows, mids, and highs, appreciated by most music lovers.
When listening to orchestral tracks, the higher register strings, brass, and vocals have brightness and clarity. The lower register instrumentation boosts the lows and lows mids, making the orchestral tracks sound not so good.
Because of the DSP calibration of each new track, when navigating to a new song, the Xtreme plays the first seconds at a low volume, then bumping up to the volume you have the speaker set.
The speakerphone on the JBL Xtreme is good. The voice playback is clear during phone calls, and the noise and echo-canceling microphone built into the speaker allows you to sound as if speaking directly on the phone.
JBL Xtreme has a fantastic sound performance and excellent battery life that can provide you 15 hours or more audio experience. Because of the splashproof design, it is the perfect choice for the outdoors.
The speaker is stylish with dynamic and crisp sound, with powerful and weighty bass. Because of its pairing options, you can expand the speaker’s functionality and create authentic stereo sound, a feature that many other manufacturers should look up to.
The price might be a bit higher, but that is the only concern about the JBL Xtreme.