The JBL Flip 4 vs Flip 5 Comparison is possible by affiliate links, thank you.
JBL is an American company that manufactures, speakers, portable speakers, headphones and more. It was founded by James Bullough Lansing (JBL) in 1927. Now, JBL is owned by Harman Kardon, a high-end audio company.
Wireless speakers or Bluetooth speakers, are loudspeakers that receive audio signals via waves that are not over audio cables. Typically they use some type of WiFi or Bluetooth to receive signals. They consist of two components; a main speaker unit with an RF receiver and a RF transmitting unit.
JBL initially started a big push for Bluetooth and portable speaker technology with the JBL Flip speaker line. While many speakers were “portable”, most did not have an onboard battery for power. Instead, they relied on a power source, usually a wall outlet.
As lithium ion battery technology improved, it really pushed the true wireless speaker movement. As people moved away from traditionally batteries and moved towards chargeable batteries, it made it easier and more affordable. There’s even some shower speakers that are Bluetooth!
We will be doing a JBL Flip 4 vs Flip 5 comparison to see which JBL waterproof Bluetooth speaker you should buy!
JBL Flip 4
First up in the JBL Flip 4 vs Flip 5 comparison is the Flip 4 speaker.
The JBL Flip 4 is a waterproof portable Bluetooth speaker. It comes in several colors and caters to a lot of different personalities.
The Flip 4 speaker is designed to be used outdoors. It has IPX7 waterproof meaning that it can be completely submerged in water (3 feet deep) for up to 30 minutes at a time. This feature is extremely useful when using the Flip 4 by a pool or on a boat.
It has a built-in 3000mAh rechargeable battery that supports up to 12 hours of music playback. The playback driver can play stereo sound and there are dual external passive radiators. In addition, you can use JBL Connect+ to link over 100 JBL Connect+ enabled speakers. This allows you to really use your speakers to their full potential.
JBL calls the material used “lifestyle material”. The lifestyle material is a rugged feeling fabric type material. It feels extremely durable and won’t easily be stained or damaged. The Flip 4 weighs about 1.1 pounds.
Finally, you can use Siri or Google Now with a single button push. It features a built-in noise and echo cancelling microphone. This allows you to use smart assistants, but also is great for conference calls.
As someone who has been around a lot of Bluetooth speakers, the JBL Flip 4 really blew me away. It has a great reputation online, especially when compared to some more expensive Bluetooth speakers. However, it provides a great build quality, powerful stereo sound and awesome bass.
The Flip 4 waterproof speaker really packs a punch in a small package. It isn’t the biggest of Bluetooth speakers, but it is heavy and powerful. The drivers produce clear sound that doesn’t distort in high volumes. You can blast this thing at high volume with no issues.
The battery life is adequate for using the speaker consistently. It doesn’t require charging a lot which makes it super usable on a day-to-day basis. You typically will only have to charge it 1-2 times per week, if you’re using it on a daily basis.
JBL Flip 5
Secondly, in the JBL Flip 4 vs Flip 5 comparison is the Flip 5 speaker.
The JBL Flip 5 is a waterproof wireless Bluetooth speaker. It provides even more colors than the Flip 4 and premium sound quality.
Like the JBL Flip 4, the Flip 5 is designed to for people with an active lifestyle. The design choices are all centered around being used outdoors. There is 11 color options which means that there is a color for all personalities.
The “lifestyle material” is back and provides a durable fabric type material that keeps the internal components safe and dry. It is rugged and will stop most stains or damage. In addition, it is IPX7 waterproof capability. Meaning, like the Flip 4, it can be completely submerged in water up to 3 feet deep for 30 minutes. This is very useful, especially if you plan on using it around a pool or body of water.
Similar to the Flip 4, the Flip 5 allows you to connect over 100 JBL Connect+ speakers with Connect+. Additionally, you can use PartyBoost to pair two JBL PartyBoost-compatible speakers together. This allows you to obtain stereo sound or even “surround” sound.
Skip to the the differences between the Flip 4 and Flip 5 Bluetooth speakers.
The JBL Flip 5 waterproof Bluetooth speaker is better than the Flip 4 in almost every way. It is louder while still providing the same clear, accurate sound. The Flip 5 uses a more powerful 20W powered driver that delivers strong bass, clear mids and accurate highs.
It is basically the same size as the Flip 4 while still providing more sound. It exceeds almost all expectations when comparing the Flip 5 to the Flip 4. And most won’t ever need to hit 100% volume.
Differences in JBL Flip 4 VS Flip 5
The main differences in the JBL Flip 4 vs the Flip 5 are in the driver, power, battery and charging.
Firstly, the Flip 5 adds a 44mm speaker driver over the Flip 4’s 40mm driver. This adds a good amount of sound, especially in the lower bass ranges. Additionally, the Flip 5 adds 4W of power over the Flip 4’s 16W bringing the total to 20W. This helps power the more powerful 44mm driver.
Improving battery technology helps JBL to add power output and driver size without compromising battery life. They both still feature 12 full hours of playback time. However, the Flip 5 has a 4800mAh battery over the Flip 4 with a 3000mAh battery. Battery technology gets smaller and more compact so there is more room for a bigger speaker. Which in turn, allows you to keep the same battery life, even with more power.
Finally, the Flip 5 adds USB-C charging with quick charge. The Flip 4 has micro-USB which is aging technology. USB-C chargers are fast, affordable and efficient making them a great choice for portable Bluetooth speakers. The Flip 5 looses the microphone that is featured on the Flip 4, however most won’t miss this feature.
So, which JBL waterproof Bluetooth speaker should you buy: the JBL Flip 4 vs Flip 5?
I would 100% go with the JBL Flip 5. The Flip 5 provides excellent value over the Flip 4. When you can catch the Flip 5 on sale, it is only about $20 more than the Flip 4 and at that price it is totally worth it.
Both speakers are very durable and are built extremely well. In addition, you can also find awesome silicone cases to protect your JBL Flip speaker to help protect it from the elements!
The 20kHz of sound clarity really shows along with the 20W powered driver. The 44mm really amplifies that max sound and clarity. For those reasons, I would highly recommend getting the JBL Flip 5 over the Flip 4.