JBL Charge 3 vs 4: Breaking Down the Differences

Harman International Industries owns JBL Charge 3 and JBL Charge 4, headphones, and loudspeakers manufactured by the same name, JBL. These products are worth a double-take, as they have a stellar reputation and provide high-quality sound.

While the products are similar, they have some differences. Even the slightest differences are essential when choosing a quality speaker or set of headphones.

So, let’s start by taking a closer look at the main variables between the two.

Main Differences Between JBL Charge 3 vs JBL Charge 4

The main differences between JBL Charge 3 and JBL Charge 4 are:

  • JBL Charge 3 connects three devices, whereas JBL Charge 4 only connects with two.
  • Charge 3 is not updated to use Connect, whereas JBL Charge 4 is
  • Charge 3 still uses the 5V USB charge option, whereas JBL Charge 4 uses the soon-to-be universal charge option USB-C
  • While both speakers have loud sound capabilities, the Charge 3 has slightly less sound quality, whereas the Charge 4 has clearer sound
  • The Charge 3 is lightweight, whereas the Charge 4 is a bit heavier and larger.
  • Charge 3 costs as much as $130, whereas Charge 4 requires a higher investment of up to $150.

JBL Charge 3 vs JBL Charge 4: Features

JBL Charge 4

Even though sound quality seems to be the top concern, there are other variances pertaining to price and detail that also come into consideration. Investing in a high-quality loudspeaker or set of headphones requires understanding important aspects of each product. The choice relies upon the need for the product as well.

Top Features

The JBL Charge has a high-quality build and loud, crisp sound, whether it’s the original or the updated versions. These speakers work well for individual listening or providing sound for more than one person. Some versions are amazing for large open areas as well.

JBL Charge 3

This speaker is a waterproof full-featured device. It can wirelessly connect up to 3 tablets or smartphones with no trouble. The JBL Charge 3 can also charge tablets and smartphones when hooked up with a USB cord, as it has a fully functional port. This speaker supports around 20 hours of play playtime to enjoy music for longer than with older versions.

JBL Charge 4

The newer version of JBL Charge only connects two tablets or smartphones at one time. However, it still provides the same amount of play tplaytime0 hours, so you can enjoy great sounds with two of your devices.

The JBL Charge 4 is also waterproof, so it’s fine to take your speaker to the pool or the beach and be worry-free. Version 4 also has a newer Bluetooth capability.


JBL Charge 3

The JBL Charge 3 can connect to 3 devices, while the JBL Charge 4 can only connect with two. There are other aspects of connectivity, however, that are important when it comes to both these quality loudspeakers.

JBL Charge 3

While the Charge 3 can play music through the Connect + system, it must be enabled first. This speaker isn’t naturally supported to use Connect + like the Charge 4 version. Using the connect app will enable you to sync your speaker with the newer platform.

JBL Charge 4

The Charge 4 speaker is already updated to use the Connect + platform when playing music. Since you can connect up to 2 devices with this speaker, using the Connect + allows you to play music in two separate areas of the home. If you have both Charge 3 and 4 and enable version 3 with Connect +, you can play music throughout most of your home.


No, size doesn’t always matter, but in detailed circumstances, it can make a difference. Both dimensions and weight can play a role in deciding between purchasing a JBL Charge 3 and a JBL Charge 4 speaker.

JBL Charge 3

With version 3, the product is condensed into a smaller speaker with a dimension of 8.38 x 3.42. X 3.48 inches. The unit weighs 1.7 lbs. This lightweight speaker is easy to carry, whether it’s in a beach bag or your backpack.

JBL Charge 4

The Charge 4 speaker is a bit heavier than the earlier version, with dimensions of 8.7 x 3.7 x 3.7 inches. In addition, this device weighs 2.12 lbs, which is a slight bit heavier and may be harder on the shoulders when carrying in a bag.


JBL Charge 4

The most notable accessories with the JBL Charge speakers are the charging capabilities. Each device has its own way of charging smartphones and tablets but differs in important ways.

JBL Charge 3

The Charge 3 has a 5V USB adapter. If you’re not familiar with the name, it’s the small box that you plug into the wall that attaches to a charge cord. The Charge 3 speaker still works according to older devices.

JBL Charge 4

The Charge 4 uses the soon-to-be universal charger, the USB-C connector. For older smartphones or tablets, you’ll need to use the adapter that comes with your smart device, as the new USB-C is not yet available for all devices. However, when this new connector is universal, it will provide a unit that can plug in the right side up or upside down. It will not matter.

JBL Charge 3 Vs. JBL Charge 4: Sound and Ease of Use

While both speakers offer high-quality loud sound, there is a slight variance between the two. The JBL Charge 4 is slightly louder than the JBL Charge 3, but not enough to make a difference. However, there is a difference in sound quality.

As for ease of use, the JBL 4 may be a bit more involved due to its charging capabilities, less connectivity to devices, and heavier weight. But, on the other hand, the JBL Charge 4 ranks higher in sound quality, making it easier to pump amazing sounds into most locations.

JBL Charge 3

The Charge 3 can reach about the same level in sound as the Charge 4. However, the quality is somewhat clouded compared to the newer version.

While the JBL Charge 3 provides connectivity to 3 devices at once and has a traditional charge port, the JBL Charge 4 offers newer options with charging devices. Also, the JBL Charge 3 must be enabled to use the Connect+ platform.

JBL Charge 4

This speaker provides loud and clear sound, with quality on a higher level than the Charge 3. Although the Charge 4 has a newer charge option, it’s not yet become a universal device.

The Charge 4 is a heavier speaker as well, which can make it a tiny bit more involved with transporting from one area to another. The Charge 4 can be easily connected to the Conne + support platform.

JBL Charge 3 Vs. JBL Charge 4: Price

JBL Charge 3

While price is not the most important aspect of a quality set of speakers, it does matter to some people. And the price difference between the products isn’t huge, anyway.

JBL Charge 3

The Charge 3 is a bit more economical in price and can be found in stores such as Amazon or Walmart.

JBL Charge 4

The JBL Charge 4 costs a bit more and can also be found in most retail stores, such as Amazon, much like the Charge 3.

Pros and Cons of JBL Charge 3


  • Cheaper in price
  • It has a familiar charge port, so it’s easier to use
  • Lightweight, portable device
  • Loud sound
  • Competitive sound quality
  • Provides up to 20 hours of sound


  • It doesn’t use new charge capabilities
  • It has a slightly lower quality of sound
  • Must be enabled to use Connect +

Pros and Cons of JBL Charge 4

JBL Charge 4


  • Uses soon-to-be universal charge capabilities
  • Slightly better sound quality
  • Loud sound
  • It easily supports Connect +
  • Provides up to 20 hours of sound


  • Heavier speakers
  • More expensive compared to slight upgrades
  • The charge port isn’t compatible with all devices

What are Some Alternatives

JBL Flip 4

JBL Flip 4

If you’re looking for something simpler that carries the same high-quality aspects, the JBL Flip 4 is a great choice. This speaker is priced at around $100, with level quality sound and lightweight construction.

However, the JBL Flip doesn’t have the capabilities to fill the entire room with sound. It’s best used as a personal speaker. If you’re looking to crank up the sound, the JBL Flip 4 supports Connect + capabilities in which you can use additional speakers to amplify sound.

The JBL Flip only provides 12 hours of sound, 8 hours less than the JBL Charge devices. Of course, this time varies according to the volume of sound and quality. Overall, the JBL Flip 4 is a sturdy built Bluetooth speaker that provides personal quality sound for your favorite tunes.

JBL Pulse 2

JBL Pulse 2

Another device high on the connectivity list is the JBL Pulse 2. This speaker can also connect three smartphones or tablets at once. Unfortunately, while this device has a built-in rechargeable battery, it has only 10 hours of playtime.

When the JBL Pulse 2 is connected to your smartphone, you can take calls straight from the speaker, as with most JBL products. This hands-free option is always useful. While this speaker is not entirely waterproof, it can endure splashes or drops of rain. It can even be washed clean, just not submerged.

The JBL Pulse 2 provides a multi-colored light show while playing your favorite music. It also uses its ambient light to set the atmosphere. And just in case you need help, the device comes with a user manual like most other products.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Can I Submerge the JBL Charge 3 and 4 in Water?

Answer: Yes, the JBL Charge speakers can be submerged in 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes. This is according to the international IPX7standard.
However, it’s not recommended to leave the device submerged for longer periods of time, as this can cause permanent damage or destruction of the device.

Question: How Do I Reset the Charge 4?

Answer: If you need to reset the Charge 4, follow these instructions: Press “Volume +” and “Bluetooth” while the unit is on. Press these two at the same time, and hold for 3-4 seconds. When you hear the chime, the unit is reset.

Question: Can You Charge the JBL Charge 3 and 4 Speakers when they are Wet?

Answer: No, The speakers must be dry, paying special attention to the charge port. The port must be completely dry before plugging in the unit.

Question: Why are My Buttons Unresponsive when Plugged Into a Power Source?

Answer: If the buttons aren’t working properly on your portable speaker, you’ll need to try a few things to discover the reason. First, try using your speaker using only the battery power.
If the JBL Charge speaker is working correctly on the battery, your power supply isn’t providing enough amps or current. Use a power supply with equal or greater amps or currents as your device.

Verdict: Choose JBL Charge 3, Quality Speaker for a Lower Price

When looking for the best Bluetooth speaker with high-quality sound, consider all aspects as opposed to the overall price. Some products charge a much higher price but only offer slight differences and updates. When you need great sound for home and personal use, you can also consider JBL Charge 2, the first upgrade from the original version.

My pick is JBL Charge 3 because this speaker provides everything you need for listening to your favorite music, either alone or with friends. While it may not have the latest updates, it’s still well worth the price and connects with three devices at a time. The charge port is also familiar and easy to use.

JBL provides a long line of speakers and headphones so that you can make the most of your music experience. Check out the JBL LSR305 professional monitor as well if you’re looking for studio equipment.

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