JBL has been known for making some of the best speakers in the world, from top-class home entertainment to outdoor concert speakers. The brand stands out for excellent audio quality and sturdy builds to last. Founded in 1946 in America by James Bullough Lansing, the brand has grown to become one of the top contenders in the sound entertainment field over the decades.
In this article, I will be comparing one of their best portable home and outdoor entertainment products, the JBL Xtreme first edition, to the latest JBL Xtreme 2 that has been recently released. The JBL Xtreme was designed to be the ultimate portable speaker for all your outdoor and indoor music listening needs.
Having a lower price tag than other portable speakers in its range. JBL Xtreme soon became popular in a very short period of time. With the new Xtreme out, we will be comparing both to see the advancements made to the Xtreme 2 and if it’s worth the facelift.
So let’s get started with JBL Xtreme Vs Xtreme 2.
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JBL Xtreme vs Xtreme 2
If you’re in the market for top-quality high-powered speakers the first brand that pops in your head is the JBL Xtreme series of products. Both the heavyweights the JBL Xtreme and Xtreme 2 have been reviewed and ranked as two of the best and sturdy portable Bluetooth speakers in the market.
Comparing both can be tricky if you don’t know the specs of either one. Without knowing what you get from these speakers it can be difficult to choose between both just by listening to them.
Let’s start with the similarities to get an idea of what’s inside these amazing speakers.
Difference and Similarities of the JBL Xtreme and Xtreme 2
When you first look at both portable Bluetooth speakers they have a lot of common features that will make you think of the first rule that JBL follows over the years of making speakers. They don’t need to fix anything that doesn’t need any fixing and the Xtreme and Xtreme 2 are perfect examples of that.
When you look at the exterior design it is very similar to each other, but when you take a closer look they both have a different design and are of different size.
JBL Xtreme vs Xtreme 2 – Similarities
- Both units have been enabled with the features to adjust the volume easily.
- The latest Bluetooth technology allows you to pair the speakers with any device.
- Using your smart device you will be able to answer calls through the speakers as well as control the play and pause features.
- Both the portable speakers are compatible with Siri and Google voice assist to command it at home.
- The speakerphone feature is enabled on both units.
- Both provide excellent battery life and run time.
- A durable shoulder strap offers easy portability for both units.
JBL Xtreme vs Xtreme 2 – Differences
The new JBL Xtreme 2 comes with IPX7 waterproofing that prevents the speaker from any water damage even if it is submerged completely in water. The waterproofing allows the speakers to be submerged in a pool for half an hour and can be used right after. This is done so that if in case the speaker is left outside in the rain it can still perform without a problem.
The older JBL Xtreme is IPX4 rated which offers lesser protection from water damage. The Xtreme 2 has larger drivers than the Xtreme original offering better frequency range and response with overall better audio quality and performance. One of my favorite differences is the new Xtreme comes with a handy bottle opener giving you a sense it was designed for the outdoors.
The JBL Xtreme is lighter in weight and much more compact when compared to the New Xtreme 2. This is mainly because of the larger drivers installed for a better listening experience which is fair enough since the Xtreme 2’s performance is a notch above the Xtreme original. So if light and compact is your thing, you’re better off with the original JBL Xtreme. If you’re in for the performance and power that JBL Xtreme 2 is all about that sound and party experience.
JBL Xtreme vs Xtreme 2 – Features
Apart from the fact that both the speakers are made to blast out all your favorite tunes at your party. The Xtreme series of portable speakers come with additional features that make it stand out from the rest.
Here are some of the features that make the Xtreme series worth checking out.
- Bluetooth – Both the units have an in-built Bluetooth receiver that connects fast and easily to your device. The JBL Xtreme original can handle up to three different smart devices at the same time. Whereas the Xtreme 2 can accept up to two Bluetooth connections from smart devices.
The JBL Xtreme original takes the cake for having a wider range of Bluetooth connections at the same time to have friends connect to it to have different selections of their favorite music played.
- Easy Portability – To make it easy for you to carry the device when you are on the go, JBL has provided a sturdy shoulder strap for two versions of the Xtreme which is a huge help than having to carry with your hands. An added advantage with the Xtreme 2 is that the shoulder strap has a built-in bottle opener, giving you the idea it’s meant to be by your side through the party. Avoiding the chance of you losing a tooth while opening a bottle of refreshment.
- Battery – The battery on both the Xtreme’s is one of the best things about the speaker apart from the amazing sound. The unit allows you to charge your smart device or a portable USB fan, light, etc. Using the energy saved in the large backup of the speaker, making it convenient to carry for your outings.
- Voice Assist – Both Xtremes are smartphone adaptive, allowing you to use the voice assist feature from your Apple iPhone or Android-based phone to launch Siri or Alexa. There is no need to access your phone to do this as the voice response is on active listening.
- Noise Canceling – The Xtreme 2 comes with the advantage of using noise and echo-canceling speakerphones making it a comfortable option if you plan on keeping the speaker in your office to listen to music and attend conference calls.
- Interconnect speakers – The Xtreme series of portable speakers were one of the first speakers to introduce the option of interconnecting two speakers together to have a stereo sound experience. Both the Xtreme and Xtreme 2 have this ability, but you cannot interconnect an Xtreme original to an Xtreme 2 as the technology used is different and updated.
The Xtreme allows you to do this with the help of a physical connect-cable that you use to inter-connect both speakers. This option is limited to two connections.
The Xtreme 2 was upgraded with the Connect + feature that allows you to connect up to 100 other portable Bluetooth speakers, this includes all the most recent JBL series of portable speakers.
- Protection Against Water Damage – Both the Xtreme original and Xtreme 2 have been provided IPX protection but the Xtreme 2 surpasses the Xtreme original by having IPX7 rated waterproofing that protects the speakers even after being submerged underwater for over 20 mins beyond which there is no guarantee. This means you can blast your music out in the rain without a problem avoiding any splash damage.
The Xtreme original comes with IPX4 rated water protection that provides basic splash protection. The Xtreme 2 is the clear winner here, with the protection features only getting better in the coming years.
- Sound Performance – Unless you’re a true audiophile, it can be difficult to differentiate the sound response between both speakers. After having both speakers reviewed by audio professionals it is safe to say the winner here is Xtreme 2 and here is the reason why.
The Xtreme offers a frequency range of 70 Hz up to 20 kHz which is quite good for the speaker, but the Xtreme 2 can provide a low-end frequency of up to 55 Hz giving you solid seamless bass and highs up to 20 kHz.
Advantages of using the JBL Xtreme speakers
|JBL Xtreme||JBL Xtreme 2|
|Comes with two USB ports to the charger and interconnects another Xtreme.||The device is rated IPX7 waterproof and can be submerged underwater for up to half an hour.|
|It weighs a lot less than the new Xtreme.||A nifty bottle opener is hooked on the strap.|
|The device can handle up to three different connections via Bluetooth.||It has bigger drivers installed for better frequency response and frequency range.|
|Provides a better outdoor listening experience compared to the JBL Xtreme original.|
With that, it’s clear who our winner is among the both. The JBL Xtreme 2 takes the cake with amazing bass and sounds, excellent connectivity with connect +, better battery backup, and easy portability. With Xtreme 3 right around the corner, the Xtreme series from JBL is definitely the top contender for portable speakers for the years to come.
Greetings! My name is Michael and this is my website Audio Sandwich.
I've been specializing in audio equipment and accessories for a while and have a little something in store for every kind of hi-fi enthusiast.
Based in California, I keep attending special launch events across the globe. This has helped me understand the products better, and with a unique hands-on experience I'm able to provide you with easy to understand reviews about the best in audio tech from around the world.