Bose SoundLink Color II Versus JBL Flip 5

Two models dominate the waterproof speaker market: the Bose SoundLink Color II and the JBL Flip 5. The two are similarly priced and offer many of the same benefits. In addition, both come with high reviews from their customers.
To determine which option offers the best deal, we need to take a closer look at the prices and specs. Accordingly, we’ve drilled down into the specifications and features of Bose’s and JBL’s respective best-selling waterproof portable speakers.

Portable Waterproof Speaker Showdown

At $129 and $129.95, there’s less than a dollar difference between the Bose SoundLink Color II and JBL’s Flip 5. However, the similarities don’t stop there. The two portable waterproof speakers also have a range of eye-catching color options, long-lasting batteries, and various other features in common.
They do differ, though, such as in terms of size. There are also a couple of important performance figures and clever personalization options exclusive to JBL.

Size and Weight

The Bose SoundLink Color II measures 5.25 inches high, 5 inches wide, and 2.25 inches deep. Meanwhile, JBL’s Flip 5 measures 7.12 inches tall. That said, it’s then just 2.91 inches wide and 2.71 inches deep.
The SoundLink Color II is squatter, while the Flip 5 is tall and slim. Of course, one could argue that this makes the Flip 5 easier to carry, which is a worthwhile consideration for a portable speaker. However, there’s nothing to separate the Bose SoundLink Color II and JBL Flip 5 in terms of weight. Both weigh just 1.2 pounds apiece.

Performance Figures

The Bose SoundLink Color II and JBL Flip 5 offer similar real-world performance. However, the latter is a more powerful device on paper. The two also promise excellent sound quality under all manner of different circumstances. To note, the JBL product connects exclusively via Bluetooth. With the Flip 5, there’s no auxiliary input — something featured on the Bose SoundLink Color II.
In regards to waterproofing, while the JBL Flip 5 gets an IPX7 rating, Bose’s SoundLink Color II is only rated IPX4. The Bose product can’t keep up with battery life, either. With the SoundLink Color II, buyers get just eight hours of battery life versus the 12 hours promised by JBL’s Flip 5.

Color Options

Bose’s SoundLink Color II and the JBL Flip 5 are available in various attractive colors. The former, for example, can be purchased in a choice of Yellow Citron, Aquatic Blue, Soft Black, and Polar White. In contrast, JBL boasts over ten. These include teal, pink, mustard yellow, and a camouflage finish that the manufacturer calls Squad.
Furthermore, JBL customers can also design their own Flip 5s by uploading images that are then printed on the device. This custom, design-your-own element comes at an extra cost, but it’s a nice option for anyone looking to truly personalize their purchase.

SoundLink Color II vs. Flip 5: Conclusion

Slightly easier to carry and therefore more portable, the JBL Flip 5 likely represents the better choice for most people when it comes to speakers of this nature. Its 12-hour battery life is also well ahead of the eight hours on offer from Bose. Add in twice as many standard color choices and the option to design a personalized, custom version, and it’s arguably a more fun purchase, too.
However, near-identically priced and with little to separate the two in terms of overall day-to-day performance, the Bose SoundLink Color II is, in reality, almost just as good. Some may prefer to opt for Bose over JBL purely on a brand basis as well, at which point the SoundLink Color II is a generally solid and mostly impressive purchase.

Protect Your Portable Waterproof Speaker

Whichever portable waterproof speaker you opt for, be sure to pick up an extended warranty at the same time. With Upsie,  portable audio warranties are up to 70 percent more affordable than those sold by manufacturers and retailers.
In addition, Upsie’s portable speaker warranty solutions include protection against manufacturer defects and mechanical failures as well as drops, cracks, and other accidental mishaps. Customers can purchase an Upsie warranty for portable audio devices purchased in the last 60 days.
Upsie also offers warranties for smartphones, laptops, tablets, and other electronic devices and appliances.

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* This article is over 6 months old and may or may not be updated.