Often, when we’re all together, we’re loud; we talk loud and we play loud. When I know we’re all getting together, I plan specially for the experience. I always bring extra gear that would otherwise be ridiculous if I were backpacking, yet it helps to make the experience. One of my favorite gadgets is the Xtreme speaker by JBL. Basically, it’s the modern boombox, loaded with better sound and loads of other features, which I’ll get into here shortly. The Xtreme is a bit big for backpackers, but it’s perfect for us too spoiled to backpack every time we camp. But if you are backpacking, JBL has you covered with their small, but very powerful Clip 2 speaker.
It seems to me that JBL by Harman Kardon set out to bring back what was once a great culturally significant gadget. Boomboxes were THE item to own if you lived in the city, because for a while, not long after vinyl records loss their market share to cassettes and before CDs, boomboxes and small cassette walkmans were all you had. There was no music in the cloud, or streaming, or MP3 players, so music lovers had to make do with what they had, and what they had were boomboxes, essentially a thin box of now-outdated electronics that would play your music loud via radio or cassette. Now, JBL has brought back the idea of mounting a speaker upon ones shoulder, allowing them to roam about town with their favorite tunes blaring loudly. Though, now-a-days, you’re liable to draw some interest from the authorities if you’re being too loud. Fair warning. ;-)
All in all, after testing JBL’s Xtreme Bluetooth speaker, I came away very impressed. As I said, it’s sleek and modern, and easy to use. You can even carry it with a shoulder strap that clips on each end of the speaker. I found the sound quality to be exceptional, with a powerful oozing bass that compliments most genres of music very nicely. I feel like the Xtreme is perfect for most small to medium get togethers! The Clip 2 speaker is another intriguing product by JBL, because it’s small, easily bluetooth connectable, but also has a nice sound coming from it. It’s by no means as powerful or capable of being as loud as the Xtreme, but it’s perfect for backpackers and school children, among countless others. I found myself listening to my favorite 60s-70s rock outside as I tended the garden the other night. How wonderful!
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Article written by Brandon Scott / Eye & Pen – Photos © JBL / Harman.