On the radar of our comparison and review analysis is the JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3.
Let’s begin by introducing the main characters of our discussion here.
|JBL Charge 4||UE Megaboom 3|
|Supported Bluetooth Profiles||N/A||A2DP|
|Expected Battery Life||20 hours||20 hours|
|Charge Time||5.5 hours||2.7 hours|
|3.5 mm audio jack||Yes||No|
|Drivers||2 45 mm drivers||2 51 mm drivers|
|Signal to Noise Ratio||80 dB||Didnt disclose|
|Frequency Response||60 Hz to 20 kHz||60 Hz to 20 kHz|
Jbl Charge 4
The JBL Charge 4 only offers minor updates to the previous generation, but it remains an excellent value in wireless speakers.
The Charge 4 can pump out gobs of bass that doesn’t overwhelm, lasts forever and can top up your phone with a pinch.
If the bulky size of the Charge 4 doesn’t bother you, it should be at the top of your shopping list.
“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” goes the old adage, and that’s precisely the philosophy JBL took when updating its already excellent JBL Charge 3 speakers.
The design is identical, as are its specs. Still, the improvements are subtle and not noticeable until you begin listening to the speaker and realize that the sound quality has been refined.
We liked the JBL Charge 3’s ability to pump out some serious bass but were left a bit underwhelmed with its muted highs.
The JBL Charge 4 offers much better tonal balance while still dish out some serious bass that doesn’t overwhelm other parts of the frequency spectrum.
The JBL Charge 4 may seem like a boring update on paper, but it’s still one of the best waterproof speakers around.
So, you get a speaker that sounds great for the money, is tough as nails, act as a charger for your phone, and lasts all day.
JBL Charge 4 comes in ten different shades, including, but not limited to, black, blue, grey, pink, teal, sand, rice, and green.
The JBL Charge 4 costs on an average of about $140-$150, depending on where you decide to purchase it from.
Now let’s talk about the UE Megaboom 3.
Ultimate Ears MegaBoom 3
This speaker doesn’t stray from the company’s tried and true formula, but it doesn’t have to.
The Megaboom 3 is one of the best waterproof speakers you can buy, thanks to its rugged design, long battery life, and audio performance.
Plus, the new DJ feature is a clever way to get your friends on the action!
The UE Megaboom 3 strikes an excellent compromise of portability, power, and sound quality in its class.
Sure, some speakers around the same price, like the LG PK 7, sound even better, but it’s huge and cumbersome to carry around.
Ultra-portable speakers like the UE Wonderboom sound great for the size but can’t match the battery life and sound quality that the Megaboom 3 provides.
For the third generation UE Megaboom 3, Ultimate Ears didn’t change the formula of the Bluetooth speaker very much, but that’s not a bad thing!
The design is slightly more refined, the battery life is still excellent, and buyers can get the speaker at a lower price.
The design of the Megaboom line of speakers has not changed much over the years – but then again,why would anyone want to mess with something that works?
The UE Megaboom 3 is the same cylindrical shape as we know and love it to be, but it feels more refined overall with the latest version.
The stiff buttons of previous models have now been replaced with more tactile ones.
There’s also the distinguishing feature of the addition of the “Magic Button” at the top, allowing you to control music playback and launch one-touch playlists from Apple Music or Deezer.
This means you can get your music nearly instantly if you use either service.
However, the button doesn’t support one-touch playlist support for Spotify, nor does it activate your phone’s voice assistant(which may well be a blessing in disguise).
UE added the other new feature is DJ mode, which lets you invite up to two other friends to help you take turns controlling the mix.
This utilizes the speaker’s multipoint Bluetooth pairing, and it can all be controlled via the Megaboom app.
It’s a gimmick, sure, but certainly, a clever way to allow your friends to control the music.
Lagoon blue, sunset red, ultraviolet purple, and night black colors are available for Megaboom 3.
There are hints that shortly, UE will be launching new colors.
The UE Megaboom costs on an average of about $199, depending on where you chose to purchase it from.
Now let’s discuss the similarities in both the speakers.
JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3 Similarities
There’s a natural overlap between both brands as they are competing Bluetooth speakers, and both are entirely water-resistant.
The speakers can be immersed in water upto 1m for about 30 minutes, which means they are both ipx7 certified.
They both have the fabric weave exterior that looks nice.
They can both be paired with other speakers that I think makeover 100 different speakers they can be paired with.
So, JBL can be paired with other JBL connect Plus speakers and Ultimate Ears with other Ultimate Ears speakers, and that’s pretty cool.
You can also pair them with just a second speaker and use them as left and right channel audios.
They both have buttons for track management, volume controls, Bluetooth Etc.
But if we’re talking about software differences, the Megaboom 3 wins hands down, which is why.
Unlike most other categories where there were minor differences, there is a huge gap here. Megaboom 3 is easily the winner and you’ll see why.
The UE app is excellent. You can change the equalizer and customize the bass, mids, and treble.
You can also use Party Up to connect 150 UE speakers. There are limitations, but this is more due to Bluetooth than UE.
The speakers stay in sync and don’t cut as much as JBL speakers. It has Bluetooth 4.2 and allows you to pair a total of eight devices and two simultaneously.
The Bluetooth range is listed as 150 feet, but I got nowhere near that.
The true range is similar to Charge 4. Block Party lets you connect two source devices and eight controller devices.
Frequent firmware updates mean that features are added and updated.
Plus, holding the Magic Button for two seconds starts playing a preselected Apple Music playlist without using your device.
On the flip side, JBL’s app is quite atrocious.
It rarely recognizes the speaker and has no equalizer to help customize the volume metric, which is wrong, and you cannot edit any settings.
It also won’t work on iPhones like X, XS, and XR. The app was said to have firmware updates, but this has not happened yet.
Thankfully you don’t need the app to pair JBL speakers. This is done with Connect+, which is pretty easy to use.
However, it only works with newer JBL speakers. Charge 4 uses Bluetooth 4.2 with a range of 30 feet. You are free to connect two devices simultaneously.
If we discuss the durability between both speakers, it is nearly equal here.
The Megaboom 3 maybe three inches ahead, but they are both able to take some hits.
The UE Megaboom 3 is durable and shockproof and can be dropped several times without any significant damage, which would probably make it best for travel and clumsy pots like me.
Charge 4 has the same waterproof rating of IPX7 as we’d discussed earlier, but it is not dustproof or shockproof.
The two side radiators are exposed and may break during a drop, but the overall speaker should be fine.It’s a close call, but Megaboom 3 is a little more durable.
This brings us to the end of the majority of the stuff that they overlap on.
Now we come to the real juicy part of our discussion!
JBL Charge 4 Vs UE Megaboom 3 Detailed Comparison
Let’s now cover why you would get the JBL Charge 4 over the UE Megaboom.
The first thing that you will notice is that if you play them next to each other, the JBL Charge 4 has much better bass.
Sound Comparison – JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3
If we were to compare the older version of JBL Charge 3 and the JBL Charge 4, you’d be hard-pressed to find many differences.
The cylindrical shape remains, as do the exposed woofers, which are an incredible sight when the bass is kicking.
It does a much better job of handling lows compared to the UE Megaboom.
We’ve seen this in the past with other JBL speakers, Ultimate Ears.
The boom 3 is better than the previous booms in terms of bass, but it lacks in the lows compared to the JBL Charge 4.
While one is understandably right to be concerned with damaging exposed speakers, there have been no problems with JBL’s other exposed woofer designs like the Pulse 3 and JBL Charge 3.
But the JBL Charge 4 does have the possibility of getting quite a bit louder than the boom, which can be a double-edged sword.
When played in closed spaces, Volume 1 is more than loud enough for a little individual office to draw an analogy.
Anything more than volume 1 can tend to get almost a little distracting.
So the JBL Charge 4 might be more suited for bigger spaces and crowds, while the UE Megaboom 3 might be more suited for an individualistic, softer and quieter experience.
Battery life – JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3
The JBL Charge 4 has a battery life of up to 20 hours on a single charge, and the Megaboom 3 falls just behind it to about 15 hours on a single charge.
And here’s one of the great things about the JBL Charge 4- it has a built-in power bank.
So yes, it has a massive battery which is about 7,500 milliamp hours, and if you pop over the hatch at the back, you’ll see that it has a USB plug-in so you can charge your other electronics from this speaker. Which pretty cool, right?
Connectivity – JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3
You’ll find a large silicone door that protects the 3.5mm aux, USB-C, and USB-A ports around the back.
The inclusion of a full-sized USB port means you can use the Charge 4 to top up your phone to keep your music going.
It makes a lot of sense, especially when you are travelling with your portable Bluetooth speaker and you need to charge your phone because that is way more important than your speaker.
There is also no AUX port on the JBL Charge 4, which is probably not a big deal considering that most of our phones don’t even have an AUX port anymore.
One of the most striking features for me that I think many people out there would enjoy is that the JBL Charge 4 charges via USB Type-C.
And for someone like me who is always looking for more and more devices to start adopting USB Type-C.
I love the fact that JBL made the switch to To USB type-C. Speakers. Okay. Let’s talk about the UE Megaboom three.
360 Degree Audio – JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3
So, I think the first reason to get this one would go just because it’s the 360-degree audio facility.
If you look at its structure, the speakers run down the sides of it.
But the way it’s set up allows it to emit sound from all directions.
Whereas in the case of the JBL Charge 4, you have forward-facing speakers, so if you were to be playing music, you could set the UE Megaboom 3 in the middle of the room or pretty much wherever you want, you’d have music coming out of most of the directions of this speaker.
The JBL Charge 4 is a directional speaker, so it’s almost the type of speaker that would be required to be set up against a wall because it’s mono-directional as it’s just coming out of the front.
This may be not very pleasant to those looking for 360-degree sound, but the speaker gets so loud that everyone can hear the music in a room.
But if we were to stick with the audio quality, I think that I would give the JBL Charge 4 brownie points because it has an edge for the bass.
The most significant improvement of the Charge 4 over the Charge 3 is sonic performance.
While the Charge 3 was great for dishing out just the bass, the Charge 4 is much more balanced in its approach.
Overall Sound – JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3
The highs are no longer a weakness, allowing instruments like the violin to sing. The mids are also great, allowing vocals to come through loud and clear.
Resolution is good but not great, which is expected for a waterproof and portable speaker in this price range.
But when it comes to better handling the mids and highs, the UE Megaboom 3 handles it a bit better.
So if you like country music vocals and classical type of music, you’re probably more likely to prefer the sound on the Megaboom three a little bit better.
And if your listening style borders on more bass-heavy and low ends like Hip-Hop or Electronic music, you might want to consider the JBL Charge 4 as this type of sound often requires a little bit more depth and separation.
Another reason one would probably prefer to purchase the UE Megaboom 3 is that it has a more portable, smaller and lighter weight design.
So, while the speaker can get loud enough with pretty much any application that you need it for, it retains a portable design.
It even has a little loop on the back to help carry it around or suspend it, which ultimately takes extra points for convenience.
Practically speaking, both speakers are going to do an excellent job for you.
But, if you’re talking about a grab-and-go speaker, the UE Megaboom feels a little bit more ready to go for me.
WaterProof – JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3
The next thing is that the UE Megaboom 3 floats.
As we saw earlier, this speaker happens to be thoroughly water-resistant.
It floats, which is pretty cool.
I think the only other speaker we saw before this that floated was the Ultimate Ears Wonder boom, so it’s lovely to see this model be able to do the same.
App & EQ Settings – JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3
You can also make adjustments to the EQ settings for the UE Megaboom 3 within the Ultimate Ears app, which is pretty great.
You have a few different ones that you can cycle through where if you want to try to turn up the bass, you can.
There’s also an option on here that emphasizes vocals etc.
The mobile app that they have allows you to adjust the EQ settings significantly.
For charging, though, this is where we might find ourselves a little disappointed as we find out that the UE Megaboom 3 still uses the dated micro USB connector for charging the speaker.
However, if you’re more of a fan of wireless charging, this brings us to the last and perhaps most distinctive aspect of the UE Megaboom three.
The little shiny surface at the bottom of the speaker allows you to pair it with the power-up charging dock relevant to the speaker’s times and usage.
But it still retains its quality of being more of a grab-and-go speaker and being able to use it at your house as your main speaker too!
And when you want to grab it off the charging doc, Boom! You take it right off.
You don’t have to unplug it from the chord here on the back as the charging happens through the shiny metal surface, making it a completely wireless process.
The UE Megaboom 3 is an iteration on an already great speaker, with minor refinements across the board, making it the best waterproof speaker UE has made to date.
The speaker features a severe drop and waterproof design, all-day battery life, and gets incredibly loud. On top of it all, UE lowered the price, making the Megaboom 3 excellent value for money.
If there’s one thing we can nitpick about the UE Megaboom 3, it’s that while its sound is good, it could be improved.
The speaker provides good bass extension, but we think there’s room for more impact, and its mids are recessed, making vocals less exciting than on other speakers.
JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3 Comparision – Verdict
While UE Megaboom 3 works better indoors, has a more elegant lightweight design, comes with superior software to the JBL and is roughly equal in other ways.
The overall winner for me is the JBL Charge 4 only in terms of personal preference.
Considering the similarities in price range and my general bias towards JBL products instead of the times I’ve used Ultimate Ears speakers in the past, and I tend to bring them with me when I travel, I would probably go with the UE Megaboom three.
But I will tell you from just having the speaker here at my private space that I prefer the JBL Charge 4 just because it is a little bit deeper and more prosperous and would do a great job filling up the central area of my place larger spaces in general.
For larger-size rooms, I think I might be leaning over towards the JBL Charge 4 considering that they are both the same price, and this one comes with that power bank built-in and has a better overall sound quality and specs compared to the UE Megaboom 3.
JBL Charge 4 is more of a clear winner because I believe it provides a much better tonal balance, which I think is essential for a musician’s ears.
Its ability to do justice to the lower ends of songs with its monster bass and at the same time enduring that it does not overshadow the other qualities of the sound is what takes the cake!
Let us know your views about the JBL Charge 4 VS UE Megaboom 3 in the comment section.
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