JBL Charge 2 Quick Review
May of last year, we reviewed the first JBL Charge – and we found it to be a really powerful gadget with a few gaps in design and shortcomings in sound quality. Nevertheless, it was still a very impressive Bluetooth speaker. But then comes the successor, the JBL Charge 2. Does it fix all the gripes that we’ve had with last year’s model? Read on to find out.
First thing I noticed was that the JBL Charge 2 ditched the two-tone color pattern on the original Charge and opted for one color to place all throughout the chassis – which is something that some may like, some may not.
The original JBL Charge
Another major thing they did was they polished the design. I don’t see a lot of gaps for dirt anymore, and the cheap plastic from before is no longer to be found, replaced by a rubber feel. Bass output is no longer concentrated on just one side; they’re now on both sides, and these vibrate real hard. There is no form of protection for these woofers, and you’ll have to read the manual to know not to touch them.
Operating the device is simple at best, from pairing and control. The ports are at a minimal as well: auxiliary, micro USB for charging, and a USB port for charging your other devices with the Charge.
Listening to mixes of Alesso, Arctic Monkeys, Fall Out Boy, Sam Smith and the like, we can say that the sound quality of the JBL Charge 2, sadly, is kinda bad. Bass overpowers almost everything, and it sounds messy and dirty. It’s also hard to hear if they’re hidden in the background as compared to when I’m listening on earphones.
The mids and the highs are decent at best, but the voices, the piano, the claps and the snares are hard to appreciate. They’re audible, no problem about that, but they’re lacking the richness and the quality that we’re expecting.
As for volume, we don’t think that the Charge 2 will be disappointing. The JBL Charge 2 gets really loud at maximum volume! The only problem is that sometimes the bass muffles the rest of the sound elements, resulting in distortion and a change in loudness of said elements.
As for the battery life, the speaker should last you a long duration of 2-3 days even with heavy use. If you happen to play music at maximum volume all the time, expect that to be just 2 days or shorter, but nevertheless, it is impressive. Also, you will be able to determine the remaining battery through the 5 light dots on top of the Charge 2, and it takes so long before it drops one dot.
For the price of Php7,995, the JBL Charge 2 is a tough buy if you value sound quality. But it is, however, a good buy if you want something loud & (distorting-ly) bassy, neat-looking, and long-lasting. There are a lot of times that I still pair to this at home, but really, I just prefer plugging in my earphones.
What we liked about it:
- Improved build quality
- Nice & solid design
- Long battery life
- Loud audio volume
What we didn’t like about it:
- Sound elements lack richness
- Bass distorts music output
- Side woofers are vulnerable to damage