Jawbone Mini Jambox Bluetooth speaker
A colourful and compact Bluetooth speaker with excellent build quality, let down by price and volume
- Compact, well built design
- Reasonable sound quality at low volume
- Excellent companion iOS/Android app
- Distorts at maximum volume
- Limited volume levels
Jawbone's Mini Jambox stands out for all the right reasons. This colourful and compact Bluetooth speaker boasts excellent build quality and produces reasonable sound quality, but it's overpriced and distorts at maximum volume.
Price$ 229.99 (AUD)
There may be a wealth of similar sized, compact speakers currently available on the market, but Jawbone's Mini Jambox stands out for all the right reasons. This colourful and compact Bluetooth speaker boasts excellent build quality and produces reasonable sound quality, but it's overpriced and distorts at maximum volume.
Unibody aluminum design
Compact size and eye-catching design.
The most notable aspects of the Jawbone Mini Jambox are its compact size and eye-catching design. The speaker is constructed from a single piece of aluminium and feels extremely sturdy despite its small footprint. It's available in six different colours, and five different aluminium textures on both the back and the front including Red Dot, Silver Dot, Graphite Facet, Blue Diamond, Aqua Scales and Purple Snowflake. At 255g, the Mini Jambox is lightweight, especially taking into account the unibody aluminium frame.
The design isn't all about looks and is pretty practical, too. Two small rubber feet on either ends of the bottom cleverly prevent the Mini Jambox from sliding around on a desk or table, while the playback controls on the top (volume up, down and play/pause) are raised above the edge of the aluminium and have a sturdy, clicky feel.
On the right side you'll find a power button with surrounding LED ring, a pairing key, a 3.5mm line-in port, and a micro-USB port for charging and for connecting to a computer for future software updates. In a nice design touch, Jawbone includes a 3.5mm audio cable and micro-USB to USB charging cable that matches the colour of the Mini Jambox. The audio cable features a flat-style cord, so it doesn't tangle very easily.
Also located on the right side is a built-in microphone, which means the Mini Jambox can be used as a hands-free speakerphone. Incoming audio quality is reasonably loud and clear, though you'll need to sit relatively close to the unit when on a voice call to ensure outgoing audio is clearly audible.
Packs a punch, but distortion evident
Perfectly adequate for soft, background music.
The Mini Jambox can pair with two devices simultaneously using multipoint Bluetooth technology. Pairing a Bluetooth-enabled device is as simple as holding down the pairing button to activate pairing mode, then accepting the connection on the device. The Mini Jambox will alert you with a number of spoken commands during use including battery level status, Bluetooth connection status and what device the speaker is connected to. The commands are basic, such as "battery is about full" and "iPad connected", but they are a nice touch.
Jawbone says the Mini Jambox utilises two custom, stereo drivers with neodymium magnets, along with a passive bass radiator. Sound quality is reasonably impressive considering the size. While many users will long for more thumping bass, the Mini Jambox produces reasonably good bass notes at lower volumes. Equalisation is also impressive, as audio sounds clear and crisp even at very low volumes. This makes it perfectly adequate for soft, background music at a low key house party, for example.
Notable distortion on or close to the maximum volume.
Where the Mini Jambox struggles is when you start to increase volume levels. There's notable distortion on or close to the maximum volume level, and audio lacks the loudness of many competing devices. The much cheaper (though slightly larger) Logitech UE Mini Boom offers higher volume levels, for example, and can fill a small to medium sized room with sound. The similar priced Bose SoundLink Mini can play audio at louder volumes without distortion.
Jawbone promises the Mini Jambox's internal battery will last for up to 10 hours of music playback, and up to 75 hours of standby time. We managed around nine hours of use on most occasions, though do keep in mind that battery life will lessen when listening at maximum volume levels.
A Jawbone app for the Mini Jambox on both iOS and Android platforms is available as a free download. The best feature is the ability to add and curate playlists from multiple sources including iTunes, Spotify and Rdio. However, the feature is currently iOS only at the time of writing and merely "coming soon" to Android devices.
The app also allows you to change voice prompts, customise the Play/pause button, and activate a LiveAudio mode that simulates 3D stereo sound. There are 18 downloadable voice prompts available, while the Play button can be customised to activate certain features. These include skipping tracks or redialing a call when pressed twice, three times, or pressing and holding.
The Jawbone Mini Jambox is available now in Australia for $229.99 through Apple stores and online, Telstra stores, Optus stores, and Optus online.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Gadgets & Things
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 2 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 3 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 4 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
- 5 Parrot Mambo Drone review
Latest News Articles
- Plex embraces Kodi as Plex Media Player becomes available to all
- 'Google Cast' is being phased out in favor of Chromecast for connected TVs and speakers
- PlayStation Vue is now available on Apple TV
- Apple's new TV app puts all the shows and movies you want to watch in one spot
- AT&T will acquire Time Warner for US$85.4b in content play
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- Best phone of the year 2016
- TV of the year award 2016
- Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSupport EngineerNSW
- TPProject ManagerVIC
- FTTest AnalystVIC
- FTSOE Team LeaderWA
- TPChange ManagerQLD
- CCIteration Manager / Scrum MasterSA
- FTLevel 2/3 Application Support SpecialistQLD
- FTSoftware Implementation ConsultantVIC
- TPProject ManagerQLD
- FTSolution Architect - Application IntegrationQLD
- CCSales Support AssociateNSW
- FTLead Frontend DeveloperNSW
- CCProject Manager - Software DevelopmentQLD
- CCiOS Developer - 6 Month ContractNSW
- CCCloud Automation Engineer. Work Location - CanberraNSW
- FT.Net & Oracle Developers - Agile, Digital/ Portal DevelopmentNSW
- CCIT Service Management Delivery SpecialistNSW
- CCChange & Release AdministratorNSW
- CCSenior Automation TesterVIC
- FTEnd Point Security AdministratorACT
- FTSystems Engineer - Managed Service ProviderVIC
- FTUX ResearcherVIC
- CCWinforms Developer - European Integration ProgramNSW
- CCGIS ConsultantNSW
- TPWordpress DeveloperWA