JBL Charge 5 vs Marshall Emberton 2: What’s the Difference? 

Updated on: November 4, 2023

Are you confused about whether to go for JBL Charge 5 or Marshall Emberton 2? Wondering which one has better sound quality and a longer battery life? Which one has a more sturdy build? If you’ve been nodding along till now, you’re at the right place for the answers. 

After you’ve gone through my extensive comparison, you’ll be able to answer this for yourself. So read on to discover all of the critical differences between the two speakers. Without any further ado, let’s get into it! 

What’s in the Box?

JBL Charge 5 

  • The speaker itself 
  • A USB Type-C charging cable
  • Safety sheet 
  • A quick-start guide 
  • Warranty card

Marshall Emberton 2 

  • Emberton II speaker
  • A User manual 
  • A USB Type C charging wire cable 

 JBL Charge 5 vs Marshall Emberton 2 Quick Comparison

Feature JBL Charge 5 Marshall Emberton 2 
Drivers count 32
Driver unit size 52 mm 50.8 mm 
Dust and water resistance  Yes Yes 
Weight  960 g700 g
Maximum frequency 20000 Hz20000 Hz 
Minimum frequency 60 Hz60 Hz
Recharge time 4 hours 3 hours 
Battery time 20 hours 30+ hours 
Charging cable USB-C type USB-C type
Compatible with 3.5 mm audio cable No No 
Bluetooth version 5.1 5.1
Maximum connectivity range 10 meters 10 meters
Built-in voice promptsNo No 
Stereo speakers No Yes 

Why is Marshall Emberton 2 better than JBL Charge 5?

  • It has 10 hours longer playtime (30 hours vs 20 hours) and 1 hour shorter charge time (3 hours vs 4 hours) 
  • It has a sleep timer and a mute function

What makes JBL Charge 5 better than Marshall Emberton 2? 

  • 20 W more audio output power (30 +10 W vs 2 x 10 W) 
  • It also works as a power bank
  • It allows stereo pairing between two speakers 

JBL Charge 5 vs Marshall Emberton 2: Which One Has Better Sound? 

To choose a sound winner, I tested out both these speakers for hours, and here’s what I found. 

The JBL Charge 5 was significantly louder and had far better sound clarity when I maxed out the volume. However, the Marshall Emberton 2 sounded great in the mid-volume range but as I reached higher volumes (75-100%), the sound quality crumbled apart. 

Equipped with a powerful woofer, the JBL Charge 5 had a pretty deep and impactful bass — enough to vibe up a single-room party. But if you’re trying to fill up a large space with sound, you won’t get that thumping bass experience. Still, it is quite impressive for a portable speaker. 

JBL Charge 5 bass

Conversely, the Marshall Emberton 2 doesn’t offer such powerful bass. This speaker focuses more on balancing mids and highs creating a balanced immersive sound. 

The Marshall Emberton 2 also has omnidirectional sound dispersion so that you can hear the sound equally from all angles and this speaker is also able to play stereo content. This makes it great for music loaded with sound effects and different instrumentations. 

Marshall Emberton 2 audio quality

If you need a speaker for indoor use, the Marshall Emberton 2 is a better option. But if you’re looking for a  speaker to rock up your outdoor parties, JBL Charge 5 is the right pick. 

As for my opinion regarding sound quality, I’d put my money on JBL Charge 5. 

 How Do They Compare in Design? 

 JBL Charge 5 vs Marshall Emberton 2 design

The JBL Charge 5 features the company’s distinctive cylindrical shape, with the logo embossed on the top and silicone strips at the bottom for better stability. Similarly, the Marshall Emberton 2 features the brand’s signature amp like style with the word “Marshall” inscribed on the front. 

The Charge 5 weighs 0.96 kg while the Marshall Emberton 2 only has a weight of 0.7 kg. So if you’re looking for a more compact and lightweight speaker that won’t weigh you down while traveling, the Marshall Emberton 2 would be more suitable.

Moreover, the JBL Charge 5 has all the controls on board including power, volume, Bluetooth pairing, playback, and “partyboost”.  

The Marshall Emberton 2 features a golden groove textured button in the center that works like a joystick to control the speaker. 

About the peripheries, the JBL Charge 5 has a USB Type-C port and a USB A port covered by a rubber flap. While the Marshall Emberton 2 only has a USB Type-C charging port at the bottom. 

Which One Has a Longer Battery Life? 

The Marshall Emberton 2’s battery life is claimed to be more than 30 hours (at 50% volume) on a single 3-hour charge. During testing, however, it only lasted 22 hours and took 4.9 hours to recharge. I believe it was because I mostly played it at 60-70% volume. At full volume, you’d only get 4-5 hours of playtime. 

On the other hand, the JBL Charge 5 has a playtime of 20 hours (at 50 %volume) and takes 4 hours to recharge. In my experience, it only lasted for 14 hours but it is still quite impressive making it suitable for long listening sessions. If you play at max volume, it would last for 3-4 hours. 

Which One is More Durable? 

As far as durability is concerned, both speakers are built with sturdy material. The JBL Charge 5 is wrapped around by a fabric mesh while the Marshall Emberton 2 has a metallic grille at the front and is wrapped by a leather covering. 

During testing, I intentionally dropped these speakers from almost a 3-foot height and they survived the drop like nothing happened. 

However, if I had to choose for durability, I’d go for JBL Charge 5 because the built material feels more premium. 

Final Thoughts: Which One Should You Buy?

If you’ve made it down here, you know all of the major differences between JBL Charge 5 and Marshall Emberton 2. 

However, it’s understandable to still be undecided, as the speakers only have a $10 price difference. The Marshall Emberton 2 is priced at 170$ and the JBL Charge 5 costs 180$. If you ask for my opinion, I would prefer the Marshall Emberton 2 as it has a more immersive soundstage and a longer battery life. 

If you’re still baffled even after my comparison, you can ask away anything in the comments. I’m always here for you!


Which one is louder: JBL Charge 5 or Marshall Emberton 2? 

The JBL Charge 5 gets a touch louder with much less compression at max volume. So the audio quality doesn’t distort as you bump up the volume. 

Can we use these speakers as a power bank? 

The USB A port at the back of JBL Charge 5 allows you to charge all your other devices. However, the Marshall Emberton 2 doesn’t have any such feature. 

Can I play music while the speakers are charging? 

Yes, you can. But I wouldn’t recommend doing it all the time as it may damage the battery life and it would start to drain faster. 

Can I charge these speakers while they’re wet? 

It’s never a good idea to put any electrical devices to charge while they’re wet. However, if you must charge them immediately, ensure the charging port is dry before plugging in. 

I’m Shaun Conroy, an audiophile & founder of HiFi Audios. Holding a Bachelor’s in Sound Engineering, I bring deep expertise in audio devices and offer insights & recommendations to fellow enthusiasts.

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