Updated on December 6, 2018
JBL Xtreme vs JBL Boombox Comparison – Which Is Best?
If you browse for speakers regularly, you have most likely stumbled upon JBL, considering the brand’s popularity. It’s one of the most renowned companies when it comes to portable speakers.
Today, we will take a look at two of their bigger models. The JBL Xtreme and JBL Boombox. They will be compared, and in the end, you should be able to determine which of these two Bluetooth speakers is better for your needs. The comparison will be based on various points including features, battery life, design, sound quality.
Without further ado, let’s see which of the speakers makes a better companion.
In terms of size, you will notice that they are both pretty big, so they are not really the best choice if you’re looking for something to fit in a pocket or handbag. As for aesthetics, both are aesthetically pleasing. You’re not only getting a good speaker, but you’ll also have a great looking one as well.
Have you ever seen those movies where someone would carry a giant speaker on their shoulder while blasting their favorite music? This is exactly the type of speaker that would allow you to do that. This design resembles a style that was very popular about 15-20 years ago, so it’s not a surprise if it reminds you of those movies.
The speaker measures 254.5 x 495 x 195.5 mm (H x W x D). Yes, it is pretty big, right? However, a bigger speaker has room for more power. This leads to more output volume. In terms of weight, it comes in at about 5.25 kg.
When it comes to colors, there are two combinations – forest green and black. Both look clean and stylish. Black is probably the most elegant one out of the two. It is covered in rugged rubber, and it gives it a pleasing resilience. The rugged rubber (which is common with most JBL speakers) greatly protects the unit against potential damage.
Hidden behind a flap on the bottom rear, you have your connectivity options. There are two USB ports, a control for switching between Indoor and Outdoor sound modes, 5 mm AUX input and micro-USB port for firmware updates.
Just like the model we’re comparing it to, the JBL Xtreme has an outer layer made of rugger rubber, which adds to its beautiful design. It has a coating that protects it from impacts with other surfaces, in case an incident occurs and you drop it. It isn’t new that JBL speakers are carefully designed to ensure durability.
JBL Xtreme measures 126 x 283 x 122 mm (H x W x D). Although it’s bigger compared to the average portable speaker, the size is pretty nice. Moreover, the weight doesn’t stop you from carrying it around, weighing 2.1 kg.
It comes in colors such as red, black and blue. The colors make the speaker more attractive and you can choose a color that you like and will look good in your household.
On its bottom, there’s a small orange zipper that reveals its ports. There are two USB ports for charging portable devices, a power jack for the power brick, and a 3.5 mm port for plugging in music from another source.
One of the features that set them apart from each other is the battery life. Basically, the Boombox battery is bigger than Xtreme’s battery and holds 20,000 mAh. However, you will need a real AC adapter to charge it, which is one of the cons. It isn’t charged via USB, and the full charge of the battery will take about 5.6 hours and will last for a whole day.
JBL Xtreme, on the other hand, has a battery that holds 10,000 mAh. If you use it at medium volume, it should last for about 15 hours. The JBL Xtreme only takes about 3,5 hours to fully charge which is noticeably less than the Boombox.
In terms of external charging, the models are similar because both can be used as a power bank for charging your phone too while playing music. Moreover, they have a series of small LED lights in the front of the speaker, indicating whether the speaker requires charging or not. It’s a pretty helpful feature to have.
When browsing for a speaker, the main and most important feature to look for is – you guessed it – the sound quality. You most likely want something that has rich and high-quality sound but doesn’t put a hole in your wallet. Thankfully, with any of these models, you will enjoy the sound that you’re longing for.
Whereas Boombox has 20 mm twitters and two 100 mm woofers, Xtreme has two 35 mm tweeters and 63 mm woofers.
Also, if you think that they’re both speakers that sound the same and only the model is different, you should send that thought away. You will see right now how they perform differently.
If you’re the type of person to go to parties or host them, then this speaker may be the one you’re looking for. Because of its size, it is amazing for big parties, compared to its counterpart, the JBL Xtreme. Although Xtreme is of high quality, Boombox gets the props in this regard, because it delivers even greater bass due to its passive radiators and big woofers.
If you’re listening to music indoors, only half of the maximum volume will be enough to fill a room with rich sound.
No matter whether it comes to low, mid or high frequencies, it does its job amazingly irrespective of the volume. If you go too loud, there’s the possibility of hearing some distortion, but if you don’t need to listen to music at that intensity, you’re good to go.
In addition, if you use a Bluetooth speaker outdoor where it isn’t surrounded by walls to bounce off, the bass may not be as powerful. However, the speaker has an indoor and outdoor mode. With the outdoor mode, you can get a solid bass boost optimized for outdoor playback while relaxing in the fresh air.
Even though it may not have quite as much firepower as the Boombox, the JBL Xtreme is enough to throw a party too, whether it’s indoors or outdoors.
On the Xtreme, you can play all types of music, from classical to jazz and even rock, and it will properly handle them. Also, it has impressive passive radiators located on both sides to make the bass even more powerful.
It has clear and warm mids. Still, there is a slight problem with the treble at higher volumes. Conversely, the speaker is loud enough, so you don’t need to play music at volumes that will throw you around the place. At lower volume, the sound will be more focused and detailed.
Functionality & Features
While they share some similarities, the speakers are definitely different in some aspects when it comes to their features.
One of the similarities these items share is the fact that they both act as a power bank. In other words, if you connect them to your phone, they can charge it as well, and not only play the music from it. They also have USB ports that are located under the rubber seal. Boombox has an AUX port and a port for a wall adapter as well, and Xtreme only has the AUX port.
JBL Xtreme has a 10,000 mAh battery and can run for about 15 hours, while the Boombox has a battery of 20,000 mAh and can run up to 24 hours. It all depends on the volume, though. Also, Xtreme can charge one device at a time, while Boombox can charge two at the same time.
The speakers are also optimized to sync with other speakers that are built with the same syncing technology. Whereas the JBL Xtreme has the Connect feature, the Boombox has Connect+.
Accidents can happen at any time, and you might spill some water on the speaker, or it can start raining while you play your playlist outside. However, there is something that protects both of these units from water damage: water resistance.
Although they can both resist water to an extent, the feature is different for both, and so is the level of resistance. Boombox, for one, is waterproof and can be submerged in 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes. It also floats, so if you accidentally drop it in water, there’s no need to worry, it won’t die.
Conversely, Xtreme is splashproof, meaning that it can survive splashes of water. However, please don’t try to “drown” it to test the feature, because you might need a new speaker if you do this.
These beauties are designed in such a way that they connect with other wireless speakers which have the same technology incorporated.
On one hand, we have the JBL Xtreme with Connect technology, which allows it to connect with other speakers having the same technology. On the other hand, there’s the Boombox, which has the Connect+ technology and is able to connect with, of course, devices with the same technology.
The difference between the two technologies is the fact that Connect+ allows you to connect to up to 100 Connect+ enables devices and sync with one another.
Also, Xtreme’s Connect technology will only be able to connect to other Connect speakers and won’t likely be able to connect to any new JBL speakers.
JBL Boombox has Bluetooth version 4.2. It is better than previous versions if you are looking for less latency and clearer sync. Xtreme only has Bluetooth v4.1. It works fine, but it doesn’t perform as well as the v4.2.
The speakers also have Voice Assistant Integration. Therefore, you can use Google Now or Siri to give them commands while you’re busy doing something else. All you have to do is press a button, then you are free to make the request. There’s also a noise and echo-canceling speakerphone feature, so if you want to call someone, you will hear everything crystal-clear while you are also playing music.
Sometimes, figuring out how to set up the speakers can be a drag, especially if you’re not used to this kind of thing. Thankfully, it’s not hard to do with JBL products. First, you need to know what both of them have in the box. Boombox has a strap, cable, warranty card, quick start guide, and safety sheet. The Xtreme comes with similar accessories, but this model also includes a power adapter which is excluded from its counterpart. With Boombox, all you get is the cable for charging, and nothing more.
When you first turn on the devices, you will hear a confirmation. They are compatible with both Apple and Android units. In addition to that, they are in the pairing mode too, so that’s minus one thing to take care of. Setting up won’t take long, and you can easily follow the steps by using the quick start guide.
All in all, you need to turn on the speaker, go to the Bluetooth settings, then you must find and connect the speaker, and that’s it!
Value for Money
The price is another important factor to consider because you want something that is affordable but still comes with all the benefits you need. So, how much value do you get for your money?
The Boombox is the more expensive option, and it’s probably to no surprise. The Boombox is more than double the price of the Xtreme. Considering the Boombox comes with additional features and benefits, it was expected for it to be pricier.
However, they both offer quality. Both work for parties, but Boombox is better if you want outstanding bass performance for big parties.
Conclusion – Which is best?
JBL Xtreme and JBL Boombox are both speakers that offer a high level of quality. With high-quality sound, Connect and Connect+ technology and long battery life, these units are sure to be a good investment.
Boombox is the winner in our opinion because, despite its visibly higher price, it comes with additional qualities that could come in handy at any time.
Specifications Comparison Table
|JBL Xtreme||JBL Boombox|
|Dimensions (W x H x D)||12.6 x 28.3 x 12.2 cm||25.45 x 49.5 x 19.55 cm|
|Weight||2.1 kg||5.25 kg|
|Battery type||Lithium-ion polymer (37Wh)||Lithium-ion polymer (74Wh)|
|Frequency range||70Hz – 20kHz||50Hz – 20kHz|
|Output power||2 X 20 W||2 X 30 W (AC Mode); 2 X 20 W (Battery Mode)|
|Playing time||15 hours||24 hours|
|Battery capacity||10000 mAh||20000 mAh|
|Charging time||3.5 hours||<6.5 hours|
|Color options||Black, red, blue||Black, forest green, army|
|IPX7 Waterproof||No (Splashproof)||Yes|
|Powerbank functionality||Yes (1 at a time)||Yes (2 at a time)|
|Voice Assistant Integration||Yes||Yes|
|Indoor & Outdoor mode||No||Yes|
|AUX cable input||Yes||Yes|
|What’s in the box||– JBL Xtreme
– Power adaptor
– Warranty card
|– JBL Boombox
– Power adaptor
– Warranty card
|Warranty||1 year||1 year|
|View on Amazon||View on Amazon|