Review: Jawbone JAMBOX Bluetooth Speaker

Review: Jawbone JAMBOX Bluetooth Speaker

Wireless speakers for iOS devices can be an extremely handy way to pump out sound in your home or office, or share music with others. One of the most highly regarded bluetooth speakers on the market right now is the Jawbone JAMBOX. We took one for a spin. Here are our thoughts.

Overview / First Impressions

The first thought that crossed my mind when I first removed the JAMBOX from its package and held it in my hand was that this thing is solid. It’s got a definite heft and overall very durable feel to it, and the series of deep tones that emerged when I first turned it on caught my attention immediately – because I actually felt them.

From the first moment, I knew the JAMBOX would pack a serious punch, and keep my attention in the way that only a masterfully crafted piece of audio equipment really can.


The JAMBOX is a curious device, from its physical appearance to the surprising amount of power Jawbone has managed to pack into such a small device. And the solid build that I noticed when I first held the device is evident in every way.

First, the JAMBOX  is built on all four sides from a delightful aluminum mesh in a unique pattern. The top and bottom, on the other hand, are made from a durable silicon rubber material, which holds the JAMBOX in place on a table or desk without damaging the surface.

I also particularly the simplicity of the JAMBOX’s design – the top of the device sports three rubber buttons for volume and function controls, and an on/off switch, audio in, and USB jack can be found along its right side. Nothing else. I was especially pleased that Jawbone did not plaster their company name, nor the name of their product on the device in a big, obvious way as many brands tend to do.

I was also especially delighted to find that, after accidentally dropping the JAMBOX on two separate occasions, its audio quality wasn’t affected in the slightest, and the speaker barely appeared damaged at all. This is definitely a speaker that can handle some abuse.

Sound Quality

I was absolutely amazed at both the volume and power that the JAMBOX was able to generate. You can feel the device physically rumble as it generates its first few sounds – and even if you don’t have the volume cranked up load, you can definitely feel the power coming from these speakers in your hands, on your desk, and even across your office floor. Serious oomph.

I tested the JAMBOX by playing a variety of different types of music, from deep bass tracks, to the light treble of a flute and piano duet, to several different tones of spoken voice, and was hard-pressed to find much of any fault in the JAMBOX’s sound quality.

The trebles are clear and crisp at every setting except full volume, were they start to deteriorate, the midtones are well-defined without being muddy, and the base performance is exceptional – deep, booming low tones that you can feel all the way to your bones.

While the JAMBOX still suffers from being a portable speaker (and therefore being stuck with highly directional sound), it definitely pumps out a much bigger and fuller sound than I expected.

Features / Usability

One of the most useful aspects of the JAMBOX is that it can also be used as a speakerphone. Your voice calls will sound better than you’ve ever heard them, and the quality of the on-board microphone preserved the quality of my voice very well, although I heard numerous reports from people that I called that my voice seemed too quiet.

The JAMBOX also offers a cool feature called MyTalk, which you can use to apply software updates to the JAMBOX, download new voices (including an especially nice British voice), and even apps to enable voice control, voice dialing, directory assistance, quick access to “favorite” contacts, and more. Even better – the apps actually seem to work quite well, adding additional features to an already great speaker and speakerphone.

I was also quite impressed with the battery life of the JAMBOX. I was able to crank tunes at full volume for around 5-6 hours non-stop, and was able to listen for up to 15-16 hours at a more moderate volume. The JAMBOX also has an extremely long standby time when not in use.


The JAMBOX isn’t going to replace a pair of high-end headphones or a premium set of speakers – but it is a great way to improve the sound coming from your smartphone, and provides excellent sound quality for sharing music with friends or pumping some tunes around the office.

All in all, the JAMBOX is hands-down the best portable speaker I have used so far, and sets the bar for portable speakers that I might use or review in the future. While the JAMBOX’s $200 asking price seems high, keep in mind that the JAMBOX defines premium in a portable speaker.

For more information, visit Jawbone’s website. The JAMBOX is available now for $200 direct from Jawbone, and is currently available for around $175 with free shipping on


  • Solid heft and durable build quality.
  • Additional features can be added through MyTalk.
  • Excellent battery life.
  • Exceptional sound quality for a portable device.
  • Simple, stylish design.


  • Price may seem steep for a portable speaker.
  • Can be challenging to pair and use with multiple devices.
  • Volume too low on speakerphone.