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JBL Xtreme 2 will offer bigger, better sound

JBL's second-generation jumbo portable Bluetooth speaker has upgraded drivers and a fully waterproof design. It ships this spring.

David Carnoy

David Carnoy

Executive Editor / Reviews

Executive Editor David Carnoy has been a leading member of CNET's Reviews team since 2000. He covers the gamut of gadgets and is a notable reviewer of mobile accessories and portable audio products, including headphones and speakers. He's also an e-reader and e-publishing expert as well as the author of the novels Knife Music, The Big Exit and Lucidity. All the titles are available as Kindle, iBooks, Nook e-books and audiobooks.

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JBL's Xtreme 2 ships this spring in three color options for $300.

David Carnoy/CNET

JBL announced several new products at CES 2018, some of which I covered from the show. One I didn't get a chance to write up was the upcoming Xtreme 2 wireless speaker, the the next generation of the company's well-regarded jumbo portable Bluetooth speaker. It's due to ship this spring for $300 (£250, $AU350).

While the Xtreme 2 isn't quite as big as the typical boombox from yesteryear (JBL's larger Boombox is), the idea is is that it's supposed to put out nearly as much sound as one. To that end, JBL has upgraded the drivers in the Xtreme 2 so the speaker has bigger, fatter sound with even more bass. And now it's fully waterproof.

I had a quick listen to it at the show, but it was hard to tell just how much improved its sound truly is since I didn't have the earlier model to compare it to. However, for what it's worth, JBL was offering up a listening test vs. the similarly priced UE Megaboom and Xtreme 2 clearly output more bass and volume. However, the Megaboom is a significantly smaller, more portable speaker. 

I'll have a full review of the Xtreme 2 once I get my hands on a review sample this spring. For now, here are its key specs, according to JBL:

  • Wirelessly connect up to two smartphones or tablets
  • Built-in rechargeable Li ion battery supports up to 15-hours of playtime
  • IPX7 Waterproof (speaker can be submerged in water).
  • JBL Connect+-enabled (link up to 100 JBL Connect+-enabled speakers together)
  • Updated drivers and passive bass radiators
  • Colors: Midnight black, forest green, and ocean blue
  • Equipped with noise- and echo-canceling speakerphone
  • Available this spring for $300 (£250, $AU350)
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The Xtreme 2 has new passive bass radiators.

David Carnoy/CNET
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