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This post was written by Rich
JBL Pulse: Wireless Bluetooth Speaker LED Light Show
I got to spend some time with the JBL Pulse. I have to admit that the first speaker I owned for my old LCD click-wheel iPod was the round JBL On Stage, and then I added the JBL On Tour later. They both served me well and one of my kids still uses the On Tour.
I love music and have some playing whenever I can. I own a few different speakers to use with my iPhone, iPad or MacBook Pro. Even though I am a music lover, I am not a producer or a musician, and some of the reviews I read about speakers or headphones leave me shaking my head; there are lots of people who seem to have much “better” ears than me. It reminds me of wine snobs discussing the mossy undertones of a particular vintage. I can tell if something sounds bad or good to me, that’s the scale I use.
The Good/Cool: The Pulse is covered with LEDs that move with the music, you can control the color scheme, the mode, and the intensity. It is like nothing else I’ve seen — when you walk in a room it instantly catches your attention. It is plenty powerful to fill a large room and outdoors is plenty loud for those in the vicinity. I ran it for 4 hours with the LEDs at full strength no problem, its stated battery life is 5 hours with LEDs, 10 without. It charges via micro USB, but it also includes an adapter to connect the USB to a wall outlet. I love the USB, I hate proprietary adapters that in my house always disappear. The range on the Bluetooth is strong, I went all over the first floor and never lost the connection. You can also download a free app to manage the lights from your phone.
The Bad/Un-cool: Not much here – I will say that if you like window vibrating low-end bass, this isn’t for you. I enjoyed some Van Morrison, Avett Brothers, Allman Brothers and Carolina Chocolate Drops and they all sounded very good, but when I switched to some heavier sounds in rock and hip-hop you do miss the bass. If you are running the LEDs then a 5 hour run time isn’t great, but it should get you through most parties.
The Scoop: If you have a trained ear that anything less than perfect tonality is unacceptable then there is probably some hipster brand that I’ve never heard of at three times the price that will serve you better. If you want something that will make your friends OOOOOH & AHHHHH and will fill your place with really good sounding music then you have to consider The Pulse. Let me add, that this would make a great Christmas present for any music lover with a smartphone or tablet!
- Visit JBL.com or Amazon