Larger, more powerful wireless speakers are usually designed with sophisticated, even understated aesthetics. JBL decided to serve up a big portable design of its own devoted to aggression and frivolity. Perhaps there’s less fun in mature dignity once you step into the audio world.
From the Harman Kardon Aura Studio 3 to the Master & Dynamic MA770, big portable audio devices are often conceived on the drawing board for home or office use in a world of grownups. They put out refined, room-filling sound from speakers wrapped in muted colors and graceful lines. Again, JBL decided to turn away from all of that with the bombastic, gaudy audio attack of the Party Box 310.
Its name tells you all you need to know about the intended use of this big wireless speaker. Armed with plenty of aural oomph, its “dynamic light show” queues up pulsing, strobing lights in changing colors in sync with the music of the hour. Splash-proof and shock-resistant, it’s meant to travel and perform indoors or outside. The Party Box 310 packs reliable Bluetooth connectivity and up to 18 hours of portable battery life.
What We Liked About the JBL Party Box 310 Speaker
To use a popular term that returned to common use in recent years, the JBL Party Box 310 is unashamedly bonkers. It can offer an assault of sound with a potential output of 240 watts. Its lights strobe and its bass capability will bring the roof down. There’s nothing gentle or haughty about this piece of tech. It’s a goofy monster with its tongue wagging.
Still, even with all of that craziness, there are some practical tools for use with the speaker. JBL’s free PartyBox app controls the Party Box 310’s playback, light shows and karaoke features from a smartphone or tablet.
Best Feature: Savage Audio Power
The JBL PartyBox 310 is powerfully loud. Its thick canister casing includes two 6.5-inch woofers for chest-thumping bass and two 2.5-inch tweeters. The speaker’s output power is an impressive 240 watts, and it offers a frequency response of 45 Hz to 20 KHz. The sound of the JBL PartyBox 310 is definitely bass-centric, but what else would you expect from a party speaker? A would-be DJ or a party host doesn’t drag this thumper out into a gathering to play Vivaldi. Its owner wants the speaker to put out music you can feel, and the JBL PartyBox 310 does the job with shake, rattle and roll to spare.
What We Didn’t Like About the JBL Party Box 310 Speaker
It weighs a ton. All of those audio components and lighting elements pile up to about 42 pounds of heart-pounding technology. With its size and weight, the JBL Party Box 310 can be an awkward and bulky addition to any environment. Fortunately, its designers installed wheels and a retractable handle as you might see on an airport carry-on suitcase.
The Verdict: If You Want To Go Nuts, Open a Party Box
Beyond the technology that makes it all work as a wireless Bluetooth speaker with a tied-in smartphone and tablet device, there’s nothing sophisticated about the JBL PartyBox 310. It’s big, loud, clumsy, crazy, flashy and rude. It’s not the sort of thing a proper grownup would put in a home or workspace — and JBL is perfectly OK with that. The PartyBox is meant only for fun environments where dignity is not only unnecessary, it’s flat out unwelcome.