Build & Design
When it comes to design the JBL Flip 5 has some subtle differences when come compared to the older JBL Flip 4 speaker. These subtle changes make the Flip 5 now look a bit more refined. It still sports that durable mesh fabric grill that covers most of the speaker along with the rubber ends that offer plenty of protection against bumps while also helping it to stand up.
Like previous generations of JBL Flip speakers, the Flip 5 also has the signature passive radiators that pulsate in relation to your volume level. This very durable speaker has an IPX7 certification which means you can be submerged underwater for you 30 minute in up to 3.3 feet of water.
The Buttons on the Flip 5 are pretty straight forward, you have pause/play, volume up and down, skip forward and back. JBL has now added a Party Boost button which allows you to connect to other Party Boost speakers and have them play in sync. One thing to note about this feature is that its not yet backward compatible with JBL Connect Plus speakers. So if you have the older speakers like the JBL EXTREME 2, CHARGE 4, PULSE 3, etc, you can’t connect them to the Flip 5. But JBL will be providing a firmware update very soon to fix this issue. But, for now, a Flip 5 can only pair with a Flip 5.
At the back of the speaker, you will also notice that the power and pairing buttons have LED lighting and there’s also a new power indicator that will instantly show you how much power you have left. The Flip 5 now has a USB-C charging port that now exposed and might collect sand, dirt plus other debris easier.
Battery life is rated at 12 hours which is similar to most of the competition. In real-world testing at 50% volume from a full battery to dead, you will be able to achieve just under 9 hours. And the Flip 5 can be fully charged in just 2 hours from dead to full.
The Flip 5 offers the older Bluetooth 4.2 technology which works pretty good. But Bluetooth 5.0 would have provided improved wireless range, increase speed and performance and a stronger connection.
Additionally, there are no microphones built-in so you cant take any phone calls and there is no voice assistant either.
We have seen manufacturers slowly starting to kill off the 3.5 mm jack for physical connection and the Flip 5 is now the latest device to not to include one which means its completely wireless.
It delivers really good punchy bass that’s a little bit deeper than the Sony XB22. The mids are clear and is pushed forward to allow vocals to stand out while bringing instruments to the forefront. The highs are high enough to be enjoyable without being very bright. When it comes to audio, in my opinion, the JBL Flip 4 is still a better speaker, it delivers a better audio experience with more bass and brighter vocals and clarity.
JBL has been providing us with great speakers over the years and the Flip 5 is no exception. It is a great Bluetooth speaker that can be enjoyed anywhere. We highly recommend it. But if you don’t mind the lack of a USB-C port the JBL Flip 4 is cheaper and offers better sound.