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I Used a JBL Clip and These 4 Things Shocked Me

JBL Clip 4

I Used a JBL Clip and These 4 Things Shocked Me

Portable Bluetooth speakers are incredibly popular, and if you have ever shopped for one, you’ve probably stumbled across offerings from JBL. While they have plenty of portable options, the JBL Clip is one of their top-selling mini speakers. I used a JBL Clip 4 and it has been a pleasant surprise. It’s not as packed full of features as comparable options, but these four things shocked me after around six months of use.

JBL Clip 4

Specifications
ManufacturerJBL
Released2021
Weight8.4 ounces
Bluetooth Version5.1
Battery Life10 hours
Recharging Time3 hours
Waterproof RatingIP67
WarrantyOne year
Impressive Volume and Clarity
JBL Clip 4 Portable Mini Bluetooth Speaker
$59.95
  • Wirelessly stream music from Bluetooth-enabled devices
  • Integrated carabiner
  • IP67 waterproof and dustproof rating
  • 10 hours of playback time on a single charge
  • Delivers rich audio and punchy bass
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/17/2024 08:23 pm GMT

It’s Incredibly Loud

You never know what you’re going to get when you purchase a small Bluetooth speaker. I’ve owned more than a dozen over the years, including stocking stuffers and speakers like the Clip 4. One of the biggest disappointments is the volume levels. Well, that’s not the case with the JBL Clip 4, which blew me away with how loud it gets.

Despite the fact it is only around two inches thick, it’s hard not to be impressed by the volume. It’s loud enough to actually bother your neighbors if you’re working outdoors. That’s an issue I didn’t have with similar Bluetooth speakers. Generally, I end up having to turn them up as I move around my property, but I ended up turning the Clip 4 down.

The speaker is only rated at 5 watts, but it is the loudest speaker I’ve personally used of this size. It doesn’t distort at higher volumes like comparable models, and the audio quality is better than expected. It’s not a bass-heavy speaker, although it’s “punchy” enough to get people on their feet. I was disappointed there’s no app from JBL, but it’s a minor complaint for this simple speaker.

Design and Build Quality

As a techie, I’ve seen some pretty wild designs on Bluetooth speakers over the years. JBL kept things relatively tame with the newest version of the Clip, but the customization options are next level. Want to add custom text to the grill of the speaker or a photo of your pet? That’s an option with JBL’s customization feature.

While I didn’t go that route, I was enamored with the blue hue on my Clip 4. The rubberized logo and buttons look great against the mesh in any color combo. Those buttons are nice and grippy as well. They aren’t peeling off and haven’t become damaged since I’ve owned it. Overall, I found the speaker easy to keep clean.

JBL Clip 4

The overall design plays a part in that. JBL’s speaker is well-built with a thoughtful design. The raised accents and buttons keep it from sitting flat on surfaces, but you’ve also got the handy carabiner. It’s something I wasn’t sure I’d like initially, although it quickly grew on me. It’s a feature I didn’t know I needed until I started hanging the speaker from my shower arm, tree branches, and other objects.

The Battery Life

When you’re using a portable speaker, battery life is important. Nobody wants to stay tethered to a wall or run out of juice outdoors. That wasn’t an issue with the Clip 4. While your mileage will vary to a degree, I was thrilled with the battery life.

JBL puts battery life on this speaker at around 10 hours. I didn’t put a clock on that, but can say it seems fairly accurate in my experience. Volume levels often affect battery life, but I never felt like the Clip 4 was going to run out of juice.

I’m also not the type of person that keeps gadgets topped off, outside of my laptop. Recharging times are listed at 3 hours, which again, seems accurate. I have owned speakers that charged quicker, but none of those could provide 8 to 10 hours of battery life per charge.

JBL Clip 4
The Clip 4 takes about three hours to charge but it provides around 10 hours of playback time.

It’s Actually Waterproof

There’s a huge difference between water-resistant and waterproof. With tech, that can lead to a fried device quickly. JBL bills the JBL Clip 4 as a waterproof Bluetooth speaker, and it’s true outside of a few small caveats.

I’ve used my JBL Clip 4 in the shower with no problem and have had it outside in the rain. It wasn’t a torrential downpour, but enough to make me a bit nervous. That was months ago, and it still works like a champ. The speaker has an IP67 rating, which means it’s resistant to water and dust to a degree.

Simply put, dust, dirt, and water won’t impact the speakers’ performance. It hasn’t as long as I’ve used it, and I’ve had it outdoors for a considerable amount of time. Would I submerge it because of the IP67 rating? No, and I haven’t, although I’m sure it could take it — just like my smartphones from Apple and Samsung.

JBL Clip 4
Thanks to the IP67 rating, water isn’t a concern with the JBL Clip 4.

The Negatives

As with many things in life, you can’t have the sweet without the sour. I don’t have any real complaints about the Clip 4, but there’s one thing many people will consider a negative, along with some areas they could improve.

The biggest drawback with the JBL Clip 4 is the price. It’s not unreasonable by any means, but it is significantly cheaper if you don’t buy it from JBL. At the time of writing, you’ll need to pay $79.99 for whatever color is in stock on their site. Through retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, and Target, you can pick up the Clip 4 for around $40-50.

JBL’s speaker is in the middle of the pack with pricing, as you’ll pay more for it than something from Anker, but it’s cheaper than brands like Bose or Sony. My only personal complaints are the charging cable and charging port. As you can see in the image above, the USB-C cable is very short, and while you don’t need a long one, I’ve never used it because of its length.

The charging port looks like it will hold up well and it still functions after getting wet, but it isn’t sealed. Capping that port would give people who plan to use the speaker outdoors additional peace of mind, although it’s a minor gripe. While I loved the carabineer, I could definitely see how others would prefer a different type of strap.  

JBL Clip 4
The charging port is sturdy, but not capped.

The Wrap-Up

If you’ve been curious about the JBL Clip 4, rest assured it’s a very good Bluetooth speaker. It’s well worth a look, and most people will be impressed by the volume and clarity. The Clip 4 is one of the few gadgets I always break out to show to friends, who are always surprised by how well it sounds for the size.

I also like the array of nifty accessories for these speakers and the customization option, although I didn’t choose it. If you’re interested in picking up the JBL Clip 4, you won’t be disappointed unless you’re expecting heavy bass or audio quality on par with Sennheiser.

  1. JBL Clip 4 Portable Mini Bluetooth Speaker
    $59.95
    • Wirelessly stream music from Bluetooth-enabled devices
    • Integrated carabiner
    • IP67 waterproof and dustproof rating
    • 10 hours of playback time on a single charge
    • Delivers rich audio and punchy bass
    Buy Now

    We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    02/17/2024 08:23 pm GMT

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the JBL Clip 4 have Bluetooth multipoint?

No, you can only connect the JBL Clip 4 to one device at a time.

Is the Clip 4 better than the JBL Clip 3?

The JBL Clip 4 is newer and louder, but the Clip 3 has a microphone and headphone jack.

Does the JBL Clip 4 have PartyBoost mode?

No, PartyBoost isn’t an option with the JBL Clip 4 speaker.

Is the JBL Clip 4 durable?

The JBL Clip 4 is just as durable as premium smartphones through the IP67 rating, but not impervious to damage.

Can you take phone calls with the JBL Clip 4?

No, the Clip 4 doesn’t have a speakerphone feature.

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