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JBL Connect Plus vs PartyBoost (2021): What’s the Difference?

JBL’s Connect Plus and PartyBoost are Bluetooth connection protocols that allow you to connect multiple JBL portable speakers together. The Connect Plus feature, which can be found on older speakers such as the JBL Charge 4 and Flip 4, has been replaced by PartyBoost with the release of newer speakers such as the JBL Flip 5, Pulse 4 and more. Is the PartyBoost feature better? Should you upgrade speakers just for this feature? We detail their differences below.

JBL Connect Plus vs PartyBoost Comparison Chart

ModelJBL Connect Plus SpeakersJBL PartyBoost Speakers
 ModelJBL FLIP 4 - Waterproof Portable Bluetooth Speaker - BlackJBL Flip 5 Portable Bluetooth Speaker - Ocean Blue (JBLFLIP5BLUAM) (Renewed)
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
SpeakersFlip 4 (image)
Boombox
Xtreme 2
Charge 4
Pulse 3
Flip 5 (image)
Boombox 2
Xtreme 3
Pulse 4
Wireless Range30+ feet60+ feet
No. of Speakers Connected100+100+
CompatibilityConnect Plus speakers onlyPartyBoost speaker only

Main Difference

PartyBoost has double the range of Connect Plus.

jbl connect plus vs partyboost difference
The older JBL Flip 4 (left) has Connect Plus while the newer Flip 5 (right) comes with PartyBoost.

Connect Plus is an upgrade over the older Connect protocol. JBL Connect was limited when it came to stable connection range and the number of devices that you can connect with each other. When JBL Connect Plus was introduced, it improved upon the connection range of JBL portable speakers by almost double and it allowed more speakers to be connected with each—more than 100.

PartyBoost is the newest connection protocol from JBL and it is definitely an improvement over Connect Plus. With PartyBoost, the Bluetooth range is doubled again. With its wider range, you can enjoy uninterrupted music even if your smartphone is far away from your JBL speaker. A stronger wireless signal also means that the speaker and its source device will not have connection issues even if there are obstructions between them, such as the walls in your house.

JBL’s PartyBoost, similar to Connect Plus, also allows you to connect multiple speakers with each other as long as they also have PartyBoost. The biggest issue with these pairing protocols from JBL is that they are not backwards compatible, so an older speaker like the Pulse 3 with its Connect Plus feature, will not be able to connect to the newer Pulse 4, since the latter comes with PartyBoost. Unfortunately, JBL will not roll out firmware updates for their older speakers to support the newer PartyBoost feature.

Click here for our comparison of the JBL Flip 4 and Flip 5

JBL Connect Plus Speakers

JBL portable speakers with Connect Plus are still worth buying if you don’t plan on pairing multiple speakers.

jbl connect plus vs partyboost jbl connect plus speakers
Connect Plus speakers from JBL include the Xtreme 2 (top left), Charge 4 (top right), Flip 4 (bottom left), Pulse 3 (bottom left) and Boombox (bottom right).

Portable speakers with Connect Plus can connect with each other but not with speakers that come with PartyBoost. Here are the JBL speakers that have Connect Plus:

  • Flip 4
  • Boombox
  • Xtreme 2
  • Charge 4
  • Pulse 3

To connect JBL speakers with Connect Plus, you just need to press the Connect Plus button on the speakers. It only takes a few seconds for the speakers to connect with each other.

JBL PartyBoost Speakers

Going forward, JBL portable speakers will come with PartyBoost.

jbl connect plus vs partyboost jbl partyboost speakers
PartyBoost speakers from JBL include the Flip 5 (left), Xtreme 3 (top), Boombox 2 (bottom) and Pulse 4 (not in image).

JBL speakers with PartyBoost are not backwards compatible with Connect Plus speakers. Here are the speakers with this feature:

  • Flip 5
  • Pulse 4
  • Boombox 2
  • Xtreme 3

Just like with Connect Plus speakers, connecting PartyBoost speakers with each other is easy. You just need to press the PartyBoost button to do so. It doesn’t take long for the speakers to connect with each other.

Verdict

If you are interested in buying a JBL speaker, you should go with newer models so that you won’t have to deal with compatibility issues down the line.

PartyBoost is definitely an improvement over Connect Plus, but if you already own an older JBL speaker with Connect Plus, you shouldn’t rush out to upgrade to a new one. JBL speakers with JBL Connect Plus are still good at maintaining strong wireless connections over a wide range. If you want to pair multiple Connect Plus speakers, you can still buy older models right now, like the Flip 4, Boombox or Xtreme 2.

However, if you are buying a JBL portable speaker for the first time, it’s best that you go with newer models such as the Flip 5, Pulse 4, Boombox 2 or the Xtreme 3. With these newer models, you don’t have to deal with incompatibility issues down the line.

FAQs

๐Ÿ“Œ Does JBL Connect Plus work with PartyBoost?

No, you can’t connect a speaker with Connect Plus to a speaker with PartyBoost.

๐Ÿ“Œ What’s the difference between JBL Connect and Connect Plus?

Connect Plus allows you to connect more than 2 speakers while Connect only allows up to 2. JBL Connect Plus is also an improvement over Connect when it comes to connection range.

๐Ÿ“Œ Which JBL speakers come with PartyBoost?

JBL Flip 5, Pulse 4, Boombox 2 and Xtreme 3. Any speaker that JBL will release in the future will also have this connection protocol.

๐Ÿ“Œ Which JBL speaker come with Connect Plus?

JBL Flip 4, Boombox, Charge 4, Xtreme 2 and Pulse 3.

Last update on 2021-06-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Carlo Salvador

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about fitness, gaming and music.