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Jawbone JAMBOX review

7.5/10 AVG.
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Jawbone JAMBOX
Jawbone JAMBOX
Jawbone JAMBOX
Jawbone JAMBOX

Specs / Features

Wireless Inputs Bluetooth
Warranty (Months) 12 months
Size 29 x 19 cm (11.4 x 7.5 in)
Weight N/A
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Reviews summary section

What's good

  • Rechargeable battery
  • Rugged build quality
  • Sleek design
  • Great battery life
  • Apps available for additional features

What's bad

  • Clarity issues with speakerphone
  • High price
  • Highly directional sound stage
  • No hardware playback buttons

When it comes to Bluetooth speakers, the Jawbone JAMBOX is one of the oldest and most well-known devices available. With rave reviews from sites such as Engadget, CNET and PC Magazine, it is easy to see how it launched a completely new market for music lovers and gadget fans alike. Though the Jambox is more than a few years old, it appears to have aged well with Simon Sage of Android Central stating, “If you're looking for a portable and stylish Bluetooth speaker, it's hard to go wrong with the Jambox.”

One of the most distinctive features mentioned in reviews of this speaker is its design. With four base designs, and the ability to mix and match components, including rubberized outer grips and textured metal grills, there are hundreds of possibilities for making your JAMBOX distinctly yours. Sherri L. Smith of Laptop Magazine said, “The Jambox could easily be passed off as modern art.”

However, the design isn’t all about looks. Most sites found the Jambox to be quite durable with Sean Hollister of Engadget stating that “Jawbone made much out of the rigidity of its glass-infused polycarbonate structure and stainless steel grille during an early briefing, and sure enough they make for a rock-solid product here, pleasantly weighty and well-protected from accidental damage.”

According to Will Greenwald of PC Magazine, “The sound isn't incredible, but it's clear and satisfying enough for most uses. Considering the device's size, it still puts out impressive sound.” This matches most reviews, with Engadget praising its overall volume and CNet noting its “surprisingly present low-end punch.” However, Laptop Magazine noted, “Despite the rich audio, though, the speaker failed to fill a small room.”

A built-in micro USB port allows for updating the firmware. Recent updates appear to address some of the sound stage concerns, with Thomas Ricker of The Verge saying, “I was skeptical that any tweak to the unit's DSP would be worth my attention, let alone yours. But all doubt was cast aside once I found suitable tracks to exploit the feature.”

The speaker also features a number of apps and buttons for using it as a full featured speakerphone, complete with voice dialing and speech-to-SMS capabilities. Unfortunately, the speakerphone features appear to suffer from the same minor sound issues. Engadget found that callers “complained our volume was too low and our words often got cut off with the unit sitting on a nearby table.”

Another minor complaint was a lack of physical controls for skipping tracks and other common features available in similarly priced devices. Simon Sage of Android Central called this a “serious downer."

Overall, the JAMBOX receives positive reviews if you are looking for a portable, well-rounded Bluetooth speaker for your phone or mobile device. Sean Hollister called it “the perfect way to augment anything you'd share that doesn't have decent speakers of its own.”

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