Two factors matter most when looking for a new speaker: portability and sound quality.
Historically speaking, electronics and water have not mixed well. Taking a portable speaker in the shower used to be a straight-up bad idea.
The JBL Flip 5 advertises that it is fully waterproof.
But can you bring the Flip 5 into the shower with you without risking any damage?
Can I Bring My JBL Flip 5 In The Shower?
You can bring the JBL Flip 5 into the shower without damaging them. They are partially waterproof, making them a great option for listening in the shower, in the rain, or poolside. They have some performance issues when submerged completely underwater, but a shower is fine for the JBL Flip 5.
JBL’s last few generations of the Flip speaker have been partially waterproof.
In other words, you could bring them around water, even into the shower, but you risked damage if you submerged them in water.
If your kid accidentally splashed the Flip 4, it might not have been a big deal.
But if they dragged it underwater because it could make for a really cool make-believe submarine? Yeah, say goodbye to your poor speaker.
If the seals on your Flip 4 were not properly closed, then even just humidity from the shower could wreak havoc.
Some folks even reported that, with the seals totally closed, exposure to humidity had them turning the speaker on and off and going to the Connect+ mode until they forced it to permanently power down.
Now, the JBL Flip 4 was IPX7 waterproof, which the JBL Flip 5 is too.
But there seems to be a difference in how well the JBL Flip 5 handles everything from a few drops of water to full submergence to encountering humidity from a hot shower.
So, if you are thinking about taking your Flip 5 into the shower with you, you can get some peace of mind from knowing that it is pretty hard to ruin this thing with water.
But there are a few details you should know before taking the Flip 5 in certain other water-related locations.
Want to learn a little bit more about the Flip 5’s capabilities?
Read on to find out what IPX7 certification means, what the previous-gen speakers can do, and where else these portable speakers can be safely used.
What is IPX7 certification anyway?
IPX7 certification is a rating to indicate that a product is water-resistant. These JBL speakers have that rating.
The IP in the name stands for “International Protection”, and there are levels ranging from 0 to 9.
IPX7 is – you guessed it – a Level 7.
This means that you can submerge these speakers in up to 1 meter (or 3.3 feet) of water without causing any damage.
In other words, in order to be certifiably waterproof, a product has to be assigned the IPX7 or higher.
Some manufacturers take advantage of the “waterproof” term and apply it to products that are actually a lower-rated IPX (such as IPX4, which can get splashed but not be submerged without damage).
This is actually a really common practice, so be sure to check labels and read customer reviews before you buy anything.
Are previous-gen JBL Flip speakers even partially waterproof?
Wondering how the previous generations of the Flip stack up?
Asking yourself “When did the JBL Flip 5 come out?” Well, it debuted as a big-time update to the Flip 4 in August of 2019.
On this model, JBL removed the jack input and the hands-free kit function, which had been problematic in the past.
They also gave the Flip 5 superior sound quality.
The Flip 4 did come with an IPX7 waterproof fabric covering.
And, for the most part, it seemed to do the trick.
But the Flip 3 was only rated as “splash-proof”, so you definitely could not take that one into the shower.
Heck, you probably wouldn’t want to get it wet in the rain.
Is it safe to use on the beach too?
You can take the JBL Flip 5 with you to the beach.
If you place it atop a flat-lidded cooler, you could keep it safe from the sand.
See, sand is still an enemy of many electronic devices.
Since portable speakers have a lot of teensy, tiny holes all over them, it is super-duper easy for minuscule particles of sand to seep their way in.
If you know the Flip 5 over or your toddler decides to use it for a sandcastle tower, you could be out over $100 for this speaker.
These fine grains of sand are brutal on electronics, so proceed with caution.
Beware: This Speaker is Loud
I’m not going to lie here – the sound on the JBL Flip 5 is darned loud.
Bathrooms naturally have good acoustics, particularly in the shower.
(If you were ever a choirgirl or choirboy, your instructor probably asked you to practice singing in the shower for this very reason.)
So, what happens when you bring a loud speaker into an area where sound naturally gets amplified? A really loud speaker.
Some buyers say it is too loud for them to put in the shower with them and instead place it on the sink counter.
This isn’t really a bad thing since it shows JBL’s prowess in creating great portable speakers, but it is something to be aware of before you try it.
What if I accidentally drop my speaker in the shower?
With an IPX7 certification attached, you can drop your Flip 5 in the tub without worrying about water damage.
If it gets abducted and taken into the bath by a child, it will likely survive the ordeal.
But you do need to be careful about dropping speakers onto any solid surface from a few feet of height.
These speakers aren’t invulnerable to damage from being dropped.
The materials are fairly durable.
Even the new Flip 5 Eco – made from 90% recycled plastic – can sustain some dropping damage.
It just isn’t something you want to repeatedly have happen.
People have reported off-colored spots showing up in the areas of the casing where damage was sustained, and a few claim that the drops totally ruined the inner components.
Is it steam-proof as well?
Okay, here’s a complaint some buyers had about the Flip 4.
Some felt that steam from the shower was getting into the speakers and causing damage.
However, this should not be the case.
The Flip 4 and 5 are both IPX7 certified, and being such, they should be adept at resisting damage from steam.
The Flip 3 and earlier? Well, those were given much lower IPX ratings and probably could become damaged by steam if they were around it enough. But this just is not likely to happen to either the Flip 4, Flip 5, or Flip 5 Eco.
Don’t worry about bringing your fancy new JBL Flip 5 portable speaker into the shower with you.
With its IPX7 rating attached, this model should prove to be water-resistant.
Splashes and steam won’t do anything to harm it, and you can even submerge it in a few feet of water.
Just remember this word of advice: No speaker is immune from the damage little grains of sand can cause.
Water is one thing, but sand is another. Take heed while at the beach, but proceed with carefree joy in the shower.