JBL FLIP 2 Wireless Portable Stereo Speaker Review

I spent a couple of weeks with the JBL Flip 2, one of the latest wireless portable stereo speakers and the 2nd generation FLIP speaker from Harman. Harman tagged this Bluetooth speaker as a ‘party you can carry in the palm of your hand’. Check out if this next generation of portable speaker system lived up to its name on our review below.

Design

The JBL FLIP 2 has the same cylindrical-shaped body as its predecessor but now has a slimmer, more appealing minimalist design with its rubber matte exterior hugging its hard plastic and glossy metal mesh grill. Well, you don’t have to guess where the FLIP got its name. The FLIP speaker can be used vertically or horizontally. The design and rubber exterior secures the speaker in place. The JBL FLIP 2 has some weight to it but has a solid build quality.

On one side of the JBL FLIP 2 are the Call, Power, Bluetooth and Volume buttons/LED indicators. On the other side is the NFC.

At the back of the JBL FLIP 2 you can find the Battery/Charging indicator, 3.5mm auxiliary input and micro-USB. A major let down from the previous FLIP model was the generic AC adapter used for charging. Harman has addressed that issue and the JBL FLIP 2 now uses a micro-USB. Harman has also included three different adapter heads. The JBL FLIP 2 also has a more sturdy and premium carrying case.

Buetooth, Speakerphone

Once you turn on the speaker, the Bluetooth indicator starts to blink and the speaker continuously beep indicating that it is ready to pair with other devices. Once paired, the flashing stops and the Bluetooth indicator lights up steadily. You can also manually press the Bluetooth button for pairing.

Similarly, the Phone/Call indicator lights up during calls. The Battery/Charging indicator displays the current charging/battery status. It flashes red when the battery is low.

The JBL FLIP 2 has a built in speakerphone and microphone. Such feature is useful and is becoming a default on newer Bluetooth speakers. Music automatically pauses and the speaker will play a phone ring sound for incoming calls. The speaker’s volume can be set using the buttons or volume rocker on your smartphone.

JBL has also provided a JBL Music App for better music control and sound performance.

Performance and Battery

One of the things I like about the JBL FLIP 2 is how fast you can pair your smartphone to the speaker via Bluetooth or its NFC. Once paired, the speaker automatically connects to the smartphone so you don’t have to pair it again on your next use. Its Bluetooth connectivity is also impressive, the sound quality doesn’t weaken even when I carry my smartphone to the 2nd floor and leave the speakers on our living room downstairs. The SoundClear echo and noise cancellation feature of the speaker also produce a clear audio during calls.

It takes me 2 hours to completely charge the speaker using the AC wall socket. A full charge gives me two and a half to three hours of playing time, with volume set at 80-100%. Battery life varies depending on the volume settings and usage. JBL promises up to 5 hours of playtime using the JBL FLIP 2.

Audio

The JBL FLIP 2 has a dual 40 mm performance-tuned drivers and a built-in bass port. It has a frequency range of 100 Hz – 20 KHz (20 000 hertz) and produces sounds of up to 86 dB – that’s more than enough to fill your living room. True enough, the JBL FLIP 2 amazes with its powerful, clear and solid sound. It is surprisingly loud for its size.

On tracks like I Could Be the One (Avicii vs. Nicky Romero), Sweet Nothing (Calvin Harris ft. Florence Welch), If I Lose MySelf (Alesso vs One Republic) and Lana Del Rey’s Summertime Sadness, the JBL FLIP 2 delivers excellent clarity on mids and highs, vocals are clean, synths and bass lines are well-defined at a volume setting of 80%-90%. At maximum volume however, the lows gets overwhelmed by the mids and highs and sometimes produces a muffled sound on drops. This is the same on deep bass tracks such Dark Horse (Katy Perry feat Juicy J.) and Show Me (Kid Ink feat. Chris Brown).

There is minimal distortion on songs with mid to higher bass such as Happy (Pharrell Williams), Blurred Lines (Robin Thicke) and Locked out of Heaven (Bruno Mars).

The JBL FLIP 2 can play classical, instrumental, acoustic tracks and songs such as All of Me (John Legend), When I Was Your Man (Bruno Mars), Stay (Rihanna feat Mikky Ekko) and Frozen Soundtrack perfectly even at maximum volume.

Verdict

The JBL FLIP 2 is certainly one of the best portable Bluetooth speakers in its class. Its dual tuned drivers and built-in bass port delivers powerful audio with clear and crisp mids and highs and above par bass response. That, together with the excellent Bluetooth connectivity, SoundClear speakerphone and its fresh and solid design makes this one of the best premium portable wireless stereo speakers you can buy. The JBL FLIP 2 does not only make a great portable speaker at home but also a great travel, outdoor and party speaker. Just in time for summer. :)

The JBL FLIP 2 is now available on the following JBL stores for Php 6,495.

JBL Sound Gallery, B3 Bonifacio High Street – 856-5041
JBL Acoustical Space, 4th Floor SM Megamall, Cyberzone Bldg. B – 919-6012
JBL Digital Dreams, 4th Floor, SM North Annex Cyberzone – 856-5041

JBL FLIP 2 Portable Wireless Stereo Speakers Specs

Type: Portable wireless stereo
Frequency Response: 100 Hz – 20 KHz
Signal-to-Noise Ratio: 86 dB dB
Battery type: Lithium-ion Polymer, 3.7 V 2000 mAh, 7.4 Wh
Power: 2×6 w
Dimensions: Satellites (H x W x D) 65 mm x 160 mm
Colour: Yellow White Red Blue
Bluetooth frequency range: 2.402 GHz – 2.480 GHz

More photos of the JBL FLIP 2 here


2 Comments

  1. Lhord Borces /

    Great review! Thanks!

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