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Music has always been a part of people’s life. And for most of us, excellent sound quality is very important. So we invest in speakers that can satisfy our inner audiophiles. If you are one of us, then you should definitely take a look at the JBL Pulse 2 vs Charge 3 when it comes to speakers.
JBL is an American audio equipment manufacturer that is known for its loudspeakers and headphones. It is owned by Harman International Industries, which in turn, is a Samsung Electronics unit.
Coming from a company with a long history and sterling reputation for making quality sound equipment, JBL Pulse 2 and Charge 3 are worth a second look if you are in the market for top-quality speakers.
The Main Differences Between JBL Pulse 2 vs Charge 3
The main differences between the JBL Pulse 2 vs Charge 3 are:
- JBL Charge 3 is waterproof, whereas JBL Pulse 2 is only splash-proof.
- JBL Charge 3 has more durable materials, whereas JBL Pulse 2 is made from less durable materials.
- JBL Charge 3 has better sound quality, whereas JBL Pulse 2 does not have sound quality as good as the latest version.
JBL Pulse 2
The JBL Pulse 2 was launched in 2015. It promised to give users an excellent sound and an equally awe-inspiring light show. It also features improvements over the first JBL Pulse.
What are the features that the JBL Pulse 2 offers?
- Bluetooth connectivity. You can connect up to three mobile devices to the speaker and stream music without having to grapple with wires.
- Lost-lasting battery. The 6,000 mAH lithium-ion battery can give you up to 10 hours of music, with a dazzling and customizable light show on the side. You only need less than five hours to fully charge the battery.
- Use it as a speakerphone. If you have your phone connected to JBL Pulse 2, you can answer calls and enjoy crystal clear sound with the noise and echo cancellation technologies built into the speaker.
- Splashproof. Party at the poolside? Don’t sweat. JBL Pulse 2 can handle rain and spills. If it gets dirty, you can clean it with water running from your tap. However, it is not advisable to submerge the speaker in water.
- Compact yet powerful. The JBL Pulse 2 gives you strong impeccable sound in a compact package. It measures only 3.3 by 7.7 by 3.3 inches and weighs only 1.7 pounds.
What You Would Like About the JBL Pulse 2
Most people are wary about compact Bluetooth speakers because most of these products have a tinny sound and a boring appearance. But not JBL Pulse 2. This particular speaker delivers outstanding sound quality and features an interactive light show that you can customize. Too much for boring.
What’s more, this speaker has a good enough bass considering its size. It also has crisp details. Plus, you can pair two JBL Pulse 2 speakers together, giving you a deeper base and better sound detail.
The JBL Pulse 2 has a companion mobile app that allows you to control the speaker and do more with it. For instance, you can control the light show using the app, from the different colors to the lighting effects.
You can also download ambient sounds on the app. These sound files include fire, rain, and waves, and they are meant to complement the lights on the speaker. So go ahead and have your own safe bonfire with your JBL Pulse 2, complete with crackling fire as sound effects!
JBL Pulse 2: What Can Be Better
The JBL Pulse 2 is not waterproof and has a gasket that keeps the water out of the speaker. Plus, the battery life can go for a maximum of around 10 hours, but turning the lights on will cut that run-time to around half.
As for the sound quality, the speaker does have a passable bass that most people will not complain about. However, there is noticeable distortion at high volumes or when you are playing a more complex track.
The JBL Pulse 2 is perfect for those who want to own a Bluetooth speaker that delivers good sound quality and who do not mind paying extra for additional features such as a light show and splash proofing. Both features are worth the money if you ask us.
JBL Charge 3
Sometimes, a company can deliver two products in the same category, yet offer a world of difference when it comes to features. This is the case with the JBL Pulse 2 and Charge 3. There are only a few products out there that can give you a combination of the things most people would want from a speaker. JBL Charge 3 is one of them.
It delivers excellent sound quality, with exceptional bass and mid-range playback. It is also very durable and is priced so that it will not put a dent on your budget. As an added bonus, you can use the JBL Charge 3 to charge your mobile devices. This allows you to leave your power banks at home. And it surely doesn’t hurt that it looks good.
What You Will Like About JBL Charge 3
JBL Charge 3, the upgraded version of Charge 2 is a good option for those who do not want to spend a lot of money on a Bluetooth speaker.
This speaker is waterproof, so there is no problem if you accidentally submerge it in water. It is cylindrical in shape and is wrapped in beautiful colors. It lasts longer as well, thanks to its battery, which can give you up to 20 hours of music playback on a full charge – more than enough for a pool party with friends and family.
JBL Charge 3: What Can Be Better
There is not much negative stuff that you can say about Charge 3. Perhaps you can nitpick about how it handles playback at high frequencies, but this is to be expected due to its waterproof build.
And if you are looking for the light show that the Pulse 2 offers, Charge 3 would be a disappointment because it does not have this feature.
Comparing the JBL Pulse 2 and JBL Charge 3
The main similarity between the JBL Pulse 2 and Charge 3 is that both of them come from the same manufacturer, and they both deliver wireless streaming music via Bluetooth. You can also use both of them as a speakerphone.
For the most part, however, there are notable differences between these two products. For one, both of these speakers are not afraid of a little water although it has to be noted that the JBL Charge 3 improves on the Pulse 2 in that it is not only splash-proof but is also rated IPx7 waterproof.
This means that while the Pulse 2 needs to stay at the poolside and be content with splashes of water here and there, Charge 3 can actually dive right into the water. In other words, if somebody accidentally kicks the Charge 3 speaker off the edge of the pool and drops it into the water, it would still be fine.
When it comes to building quality, Charge 3 is made of durable materials, using a combination of fabric and rubber. The Pulse 2 is mostly metallic wire mesh.
Like the Pulse 2, the Charge 3 speaker also has a 6,000 mAH battery. However, their run times differ. While the Charge 3 can give you up to 20 hours of music playback, the Pulse 2 can only give you a maximum of 10 hours and to play your music that long, you have to keep the volume down and the light show off.
The dazzling play of colorful LED lights is a feature that the Pulse 2 has yet the Charge 3 doesn’t. If you know, you would be keeping the lights off most of the time in order to preserve battery life, and then you might as well go with the Charge 3. To make up for its lack of a light display, the JBL Charge 3 doubles as a power bank and can, therefore, recharge your phones and tablets.
The JBL Charge 3 Has Better Sound Quality
The JBL Charge 3 has an edge when it comes to delivering excellent sound quality. Compared to the Pulse 2, Charge 3 delivers more impressive bass without too much distortion even at higher volumes. It does, however, get crippled at high frequencies. Its waterproof construction hinders this speaker from soaring with high notes.
JBL Pulse 2 and Charge 3: A Side-by-Side Comparison
To make it easier for you to compare the Pulse 2 and the JBL Charge 3, here is a side-by-side comparison between these two JBL speaker models, plus a rundown of the things that one speaker does better than the other.
|Model||Pulse 2||Charge 3|
|Dimensions (inches)||3.3 by 7.7 by 3.3||8.3 by 3.4 by 3.5|
|6,000 mAh lithium-ion battery||Yes||Yes|
|Charging time (hours)||5||4|
|Maximum music playing time||10||20|
|Bluetooth 4.1 connectivity||Yes||Yes|
Reasons Why You Should Choose the JBL Charge 3
- Longer battery life at 20 hours vs. 10 hours
- Shorter charge time by one hour
- 20 watts of output power for audio, which is 4 watts longer than the Pulse 2
- Has a passive radiator, which doesn’t use magnets or voice coils
- Has a control panel on the device itself
- Active speaker, which has an embedded amplifier
- Stereo speakers
Reasons Why You Should Choose the JBL Pulse 2
- It has a subwoofer and Wi-Fi connectivity
- Lighter by half a pound
- Has a 3.5-mm audio jack
- Has remote control and allows for wireless charging
Before You Buy: A Look at JBL Pulse 4 and JBL Charge 4
One of the things that might hinder you from buying either a JBL Pulse 2 or a JBL Charge 3 is their availability. Both models have been replaced by a newer version: the Pulse 4 and the Charge 4.
The JBL Pulse 4 improves on the light show with a 360-degree LED display. Plus, it gives you up to 12 hours of playback. It’s also waterproof with an IPX7 rating, much like the Charge 3.
The eye-catching Pulse 4 also delivers outstanding sound quality. However, if you’re looking for the 3.5-mm auxiliary jack and the microphone, you won’t find it in this version. Plus, it is a lot heavier at 2.78 pounds.
Meanwhile, the JBL Charge 4 now comes in 10 color choices and still delivers up to 20 hours of music playback using an improved 7,500 mAH battery. It retains the excellent sound quality you find on Charge 3, as well as the ruggedness and durability that you have come to expect from the product line.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. JBL or James Bullough Lansing is a very popular audio equipment manufacturer.
Yes. It’s possible to charge the JBL Charge 3 while listening to music.
No. Charge 3 is a Bluetooth speaker which has AUX connection, but unfortunately, it doesn’t support WiFi.
The JBL Connect app is compatible with both JBL Charge 3 and JBL Pulse 2. It is used for upgrades and configurations. You can rename the Bluetooth name and set it to Party or Stereo mode.
JBL Charge 3 vs JBL Pulse 2: Which One Should You Buy?
The JBL Charge 3 and the JBL Pulse 2 have their own set of charms. The Pulse 2 can dazzle you with its light show and good sound quality. Meanwhile, Charge 3 delivers better music playback and audio quality.
If forced to choose between these two, however, you can never go wrong with the Charge 3 because you not only get a better speaker, you also gain a power bank. The lights on the Pulse 2 is a nifty addition that can make parties with your friends more interesting, but it does come with a premium.
Choose the JBL Charge 3 for its excellent speaker quality at a price that is more affordable than the Pulse 2. The Charge 3 might even be a better choice than the newer Pulse 4 and Charge 4 if you want to get the same quality sound at a discount.