UE Boom vs Big Jambox

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dozens

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I have a brand new Big Jambox, but am tempted to return it and order the UE Boom due to it's smaller size and water resistance. Has anyone heard both and can give me the lowdown on comparing the two's sound?

I'm concerned about:
1) Which is louder.
2) Which sounds better at high volumes.
3) How waterproof the Boom truly is. As in, could it be taken in the shower? Dropped in the pool by accident and live?
 

kornchild2002

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1) The JamBox Big is definitely louder.
2) The JamBox Big sounds better at higher volumes no matter what unit you compare it to.
3) The UE Boom is much more water resistant than the Jawbone JamBox Big but the audio quality and battery life far outweigh that singular feature. The JamBox Big isn't resistant to water, at all. That's pretty evident but it was never designed to be a water resistant bluetooth speaker. It was designed to be the best, portable bluetooth speaker system on the market aside from water resistance.

I highly recommend you go with the JamBox Big and purchase a case for it. Not only will that provide better battery life for you but also better audio quality. The UE Boom pulls ahead only if you plan on splashing it a bit. Even then, you can buy cases for the JamBox Big that protect against that.
 

dozens

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So the Big has that much better sound and volume? Good to know.

You mention waterproof cases - care to link to some? Thank you!
 

kornchild2002

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The waterproof case is from a company called The Vault and then there are travel cases that will help shield against sand and water from Surf to Summit. There is another feature of the UE Boom that's interesting: you can sync two up at once and use them in stereo mode. I admit that is a cool feature but you will end up spending $400 just to do so.

I have a JamBox Big and my girlfriend has the UE Boom. After moving in together, she only uses my JamBox. The "360 degree" sound of the UE Boom isn't all that great (they should have concentrated the sound in one direction and make it better) and she was never able to get the advertised 15 hours of battery life. Jawbone updated the software for the JamBox Big (you have to use your computer to update your unit) so that it works more closely with iOS device. You can adjust the volume of the unit by turning your iDevice's volume up and down, the JamBox works better with the AAC audio format, and they were able to increase the battery life to over 13 hours when being used with an iOS device. I use my Big JamBox about one hour a day and my GF uses it off and on. I haven't charged it in almost two weeks (I will have to recharge it today for the weekend).
 

slept on

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Th Big Jambox sounds really really good however every review I've read about the UE boom says that the two are on par with eachother as far as sound goes.

The UE Boom with it's attachable hook, smaller size, water resistance and 360 sound design is definitely made to be more portable in most scenarios, something you may want to take into consideration.
 

kornchild2002

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I can assure you that the UE Boom, although really nice for its size, simply cannot match the audio quality or volume levels of the Big Jambox (and every professional review I have read states that). Things would be different if we were talking about the standard, little Jambox but we aren't. You would have to buy two UE Boom speakers in order to obtain the type of sound coming from a single Big Jambox. The UE Boom also heavily distorts once the volume is turned up, mainly with bass-heavy music. I played a few Korn tracks on her UE Boom at near maximum volume and they were heavily distorted. My Jambox Big was playing the song at the same (perceived) volume and that was only at its half-way point, there was still a lot to go before the Big Jambox started distorting. Even then I can turn Live Audio on (it works better at higher volumes) and get stereo separation whereas you need to buy two UE Booms to do that.

The Big Jambox has the UE Boom trounced with every aspect except being water resistant. It should though as it's a $300 speaker going up against something that costs $100 less. They are in two completely different price categories and made for two different purposes. The UE Boom is meant to be an outdoor, really portable speaker that can handle some of the elements while the Big Jambox is more for indoor use where you can really crank things up. I'm not saying that the UE Boom isn't more portable but the Big Jambox doesn't take up much more space than it and the Jambox isn't much heavier. The sound quality, battery life, volume levels, and every other aspect of the Big Jambox makes it a better all-around choice. If portability and shower use are your primary concern, get the UE Boom. However, if you want anything else, get the Jambox Big.
 

slept on

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Valid points. Based on specs, size of the speakers, the Big Jambox should and is louder than the UE Boom although I don't believe the UE Boom was designed to be the loudest as it was meant to be the most functional for it's intended use.

Some users might view the 360 sound design as a PRO rather then a CON.

My buddy brought his Big Jambox to a pool party and I was constantly amazed at the LOUD sound it produced when I was sitting at least 10 ft to the left of it. The overall quality of the music increased and became a lot sharper and defined when I actually walked in front of it and checked it out.

I don't think either speakers are bad in any aspect but I do believe they're ultimately designed for different situations.

I think the over all price should also play a big factor in which speaker to go with.

2 UE Booms to sounds "better" than the BJB = $400

Big Jambox + Water Proof Case = $400

1 Loud UE Boom, Water resistant speaker = $200+-

1 Louder Speaker + Waterproof Case = $400 +-
 

kornchild2002

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My main issue with the UE Boom is the lack of bass and it distorts at higher volumes, especially with bass-heavy material. It is a good speaker, I would put it's sound quality at #2 in the $200 price range right behind the Bose SoundLink Mini. If you wanted something louder and with more bass, the JamBox Big will do a lot better, it will even do better than two UE Booms setup in stereo/dual mono mode. You aren't going to gain any bass when doing that nor is the audio quality going to increase. A JamBox Big is still going to produce better sound along with, at a minimum, matching the maximum volume output of two UE Booms in stereo mode (without the distortion). Although the dual mono/stereo feature of the UE Boom is nice, a JamBox Big is still going to outperform it (and another UE Boom) on every level except for being water resistant (which is NOT waterproof).

P.S. The 360 degree sound field is anything but. The output level of a UE Boom does change when you move around it. Although a JamBox Big or SoundLink Mini is going to be more directional, the UE Boom is not a full 360 degree unit by any means. It's a tad better than the other ones but definitely not something to even earn that 360 degree "feature" that the marketing team is so proud of.
 

slept on

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ok I get it. Regardless if the speaker is $200 or $400, portable or water resistant. The ONLY speaker you should consider is the Big Jambox.

To be honest I don't have any experience with the UE Boom I have the Bose Soundlink 2 and friends who own the Big Jambox. I can only make comparisons between the UE Boom and BJB based off of the reviews I've read and viewed online which do not align with your feedback.


For the OP:

The BJB is loud and sounds better at high volumes. The UE Boom is splash resistant NOT water proof.

From what I've read if you want waterproof and loud, but not louder than the Big Jambox, the Grace Digital ECOXGEAR ECOXBT is what you should look at.
 

kornchild2002

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I never said that, you aren't reading what I'm actually writing. The OP asked which was better between the UE Boom and JamBox Big. The JamBox Big beats it in all areas except water resistance and it is a little bigger/heavier than the UE Boom. That is what I am saying. It doesn't matter if you put two UE Booms together, they are still going to lack bass and the JamBox Big is going to still get louder and clearer than the two while producing more bass.

If it were up to me, I would go with the Bose SoundLink Mini. I think it actually sounds better than the JamBox Big at equal volumes, it is more portable, I like the design better, and it costs $200. The SoundLink Mini doesn't have all the features that a UE Boom or JamBox Big does (such as true speaker volume adjustment with an iOS device, battery life) but it's very impressive that a $200 speaker is able to blow away a $300 speaker in terms of sound quality while taking up half the space. Plus the SoundLink Mini looks like it came right off of an Apple assembly line. Unlike the SoundLink II, it is well worth its price tag.
 

slept on

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Im not saying that the BJB doesn't sound better than the UE Boom. I'm not saying the Bose doesn't sound better than the UE Boom. What I do not agree with is that the BJB beats the UE Boom in every area besides being water resistant, especially for the price. Just to make it as portable as the UE Boom you're at close to $350. If you want to make it water resistant you're at $400+ plus your "portable" speaker is now a small briefcase. Is the sound quality that much better that you're willing to spend 150-200 more dollars?

Aside from the great sound quality of the bose the shorter battery life already got it disqualified . Also wanted a speaker that uses a USB charger.
 

kornchild2002

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Is being water resistant worth getting an inferior quality speaker? Besides, you can make the JamBox Big water resistant without buying an official case. It doesn't take much to put it in a Ziploc plastic bag. I'm not sure how you cannot agree on something that the entire tech community has echoed. That's like saying that you disagree with scientists and astronomers and instead choose to believe that the earth surrounds the sun, stars, and moon so that we are living on the inside, outer crust of the planet.
 

slept on

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Is being water resistant worth getting an inferior quality speaker?
The BJB has bigger speakers and is on average $100+ more than the UE Boom. It should produce a "superior" sound. I don't agree that the "better" sound quality is worth $150+ more. Having an overall better quality than the UE Boom I think is based on preference and how you plan to use it.


Besides, you can make the JamBox Big water resistant without buying an official case. It doesn't take much to put it in a Ziploc plastic bag.
You really want to stick your $300+, beautifully designed speaker inside of a ziplock back? Is there even a freezer bag that size? Also what do you think will happen to that premium sound once this is done? Really?


I'm not sure how you cannot agree on something that the entire tech community has echoed.
Honestly, yours is the only OPINION that places the BJB THAT far ahead of the UE Boom that I've ever come across.


That's like saying that you disagree with scientists and astronomers and instead choose to believe that the earth surrounds the sun, stars, and moon so that we are living on the inside, outer crust of the planet.
You're telling me that the shape of a large metallic brick is more comfortable and protable than a 22oz tall can of beer, a baby bottle and a bottle of VOSS water?


I believe the UE Boom and BJB may be in 2 different categories of bluetooth speakers mainly because of price and possibly size with the BJB being in somewhat of a luxury/high end category. I believe the Soundlink 2 would be a better comparison or even the UE Boombox.

From what I understand you're comparing a $300 speaker to a $200 speaker?
 

kornchild2002

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That's exactly what the OP was asking for though. They wanted a comparison between a $200 and $300 speaker. Actually, the JamBox is more like $250 these days. I'm not knocking the UE Boom for not sounding like a $300 speaker. That is completely understandable. However, if the OP was already willing to spend the extra $50-$100, then there really is no comparison as and they should go with the JamBox. It has all the same features (minus water resistance) and much better sound quality. That is exactly what the OP asked for and I gave them my opinion which is in-line with the rest of the tech industry.

Either way, the OP got an answer and I'm closing this thread since you still seem to want to argue whatever points you're trying to make. It doesn't matter at this point as the OP is long gone.
 
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