LAS VEGAS, CES 2013 – I love my Jambox, but I’m always perplexed why I can’t charge my iPhone using it. After all, it’s essentially a big battery brick with a speaker attached… why can’t I siphon some juice off the top?
The answer is that, in reality, the Jambox has a pretty tiny battery. It’s good for powering a speaker, but it would die pretty quick if you tried to juice an iPhone or (heaven!) an iPad with it. The JBL Charge, though, remedies that problem: it’s a great sounding Jambox-style speaker with a massive battery inside.
Available in a cute array of multiple colors, the JBL Charge looked like a fantastic Bluetooh speaker when we checked it out at the official JBL/Harman Kardon booth in Central Hall here at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
First, let’s talk about the built-in battery. The capacity on this battery is pretty good, around 6,000mAh, which is technically enough juice your iPhone 5 up about four times, or your iPad mini up twice. That’s pretty respectable, and if you don’t plug a device into the built-in USB port, it’ll get about 12 hours of audio playback from a single charge.
As far as size and shape, it’s about the same size as a Jambox, but barrel-shaped instead of rectangular. It’s hard to tell how anything sounds on that chaotic, cacophonic CES showfloor, but it should sound pretty good, featyuring two 1-5/8-inch full range drivers and two five watt amplifiers.
We’ve got a pretty good relationship with the guys at JBL, so we’re hoping to get a review unit to put through their paces the moment the JBL Charge hits the street later this quarter for the low price of just $149. We’ll let you know how it sounds then.