JBL Eon One vs Bose L1 But Which PA System?

Which of These Portable PA Systems Gives The Best Sound?: JBL Eon One VS Bose L1

As a performing artist or a public speaker, you know that delivering a well-heard sound is not magic. Irrespective of the kind of content you want to pass across, you’ll need an excellent public address (PA) system. If you’re already shopping for a portable PA system but don’t know which to pick, just be calm. We’ve already looked at the best DJ speakers, here. Now, in this review, we’ll compare JBL Eon One VS Bose L1 to find out the best.


A portable PA system is an all-in-one kind. It’s unlike a standard PA that has each sound equipment as separate items. The system comprises at least a microphone, power amplifier, and speaker in a single column. These components work together to generate a perfect sound.


You may need this portable system as an artist performing in a cafe or part of a band playing in a small club. It’s also vital for office or public presentations and school or group assemblies. With a portable PA system, you can be your sound technician and DJ yourself.

This PA system provides excellent sound reinforcement, especially for venues that don’t require a music concert package. You can set them up quickly without several connections. They also don’t take up storage space, offering an easy way for transportation.

The JBL one and the Bose L1 are two good references for portable PA systems. However, how do you choose if you want to go home with the best?

How To Choose A Portable PA System

#1 Size

Although they’re called portable, they still have different weights and sizes among them. How big or small you want your PA system to be might depend on how often you’ll be hauling them. Also, how much more equipment can you handle? If you’re transporting other instruments, you may want something that’ll fit into your mode of transportation.

Features like compact cases, telescoping handles, and wheels can enhance a PA system’s portability. Consider picking something as portable as possible without compromising on the sound quality and coverage you need.

#2 Coverage

Portable public address systems are not loud enough for banging concerts. However, they’re perfect for small to medium-sized venues with an audience of 50 to 1000. You’ll want a PA system that can cover your kind of event.

You would want your pick to depend on the size of your audience and your area of coverage. If you’re not sure about your coverage and audience size, it’s best to overestimate the total number. When choosing with coverage in mind, more is better than less.

#3 Power

Power is an important consideration, and its measurement is in watts. The power value of portable PA systems range from 60-1500 watts and like coverage, you can never have too much power. Power also determines sound levels, whose measurement is in decibels.  It uses RMS (Root mean square) and Peak values to indicate power levels.

While RMS is the average power you’ll get during use, Peak is the maximum watts from short bursts of sound. The RMS value is what you’ll need. Also, power requirements increase as coverage increases. For instance, outdoor environments and indoor ones with high ceilings require more amplification. Larger venues also require more amplification.

#4 Components and Connectivity

The typical components you’ll find in a portable PA system are a microphone, amplifier, and speaker. However, you can get a system with more components depending on your needs. Many PA systems have a built-in mixer, multiple microphone ports, and even more than one speaker.

A wide range of connectivity options is also possible on some. There are features like Bluetooth capability and a Jack for instruments. You can also find audio source ports to play files from DVD, USB, or SD card in some PA systems.

#5 Application

The kind of application, either speech or music delivery, also matters in your choice. Music reproduction requires more wattage than speech delivery due to a broader range of frequencies. Besides high power, the speaker should have a good woofer for low frequency, horn for mid-range, and tweeter for high frequency.

Some manufacturers also incorporate reverb capability, stereo sounds, and speakers, especially for music applications. For delivering speeches, a mono speaker may suffice.

#6 Type of Microphone

You can choose a portable PA system that either has a wireless microphone or a wired microphone. With a wireless mic, you’ll have the freedom to move around. However, some wired microphones offer smoother sounds with no interference.

#7 Anti-feedback Option

When a speaker sends out a sound, the microphone can pick it and send it back to the speaker. The situation leads to the high-pitched tone, called feedback. As with every sound system set up, feedback can occur with portable public address systems.

However, some portable PA systems have an anti-feedback feature to prevent a microphone from picking speaker signals. If you’re concerned about sound precision and accuracy, which you should be, choose a PA system with an anti-feedback option.

#8 Battery or Non-battery Powered

If you use venues with available power sockets, a non-battery powered PA system is preferable. It’s also lighter without the extra weight of a battery. However, if you’ll be using locations with no power source, especially certain outdoor events, go for a battery-powered system. Also,  it has a faster set-up process.

Reviewing Two Portable PA Systems: JBL Eon One VS Bose L1 Compact

JBL Eon One vs Bose L1

JBL Eon One

Product Details

  • Speakers: Two sets (six drivers and one subwoofer)
  • Power: 380 watts
  • Sound level: 118 DB Peak
  • Weight: 40.8 pounds
  • Frequency response: 37.5Hz to 18kHz
  • Dimension: 24.7 x 20.2 x 30.2 inches
  • Enclosure: Polypropylene
  • Warranty: 5 years


The Eon One JBL has an unobstructed bass reflex 10″ subwoofer, for accurate low-frequency response and six 2″ HF drivers. The LF drivers (subwoofer) have a power of 250 watts and HF drivers, 120 watts. Its amplifier has 380 watts of power, and it can produce a maximum of 118 decibels of clear audio.

The Eon One has a class D amplifier that can serve large meeting rooms and conferences. It’s patented linear array configuration optimizes each driver’s space and angle to deliver excellent sound quality in all directions. So, irrespective of where your audience stands, they’ll get good sound coverage. There are also three listening positions in different environments.

The two speakers have a minimum frequency response of 37.5 HZ and a maximum of 18.5 kHz. It’s not battery-powered but requires a plug-in power source.

Components and Connectivity

This JBL sound system has a powerful onboard 6-channel mixer, with an equalizer and an easy to use controls. You can easily connect all your microphones and other instruments to get started. I love the Bluetooth connectivity feature; I can effortlessly stream any audio from my mobile device. Its connection ports include two 1/4″ combo-XLR with balanced Mic/line input, two 1/4″ TRS or RCA Jacks (stereo), and one 1/8″ (3.5mm) Jack for portable electronics. This PA system doesn’t have a microphone.


The JBL Eon weight of 40.8 pounds is not light, and there are lighter non-battery powered devices than this PA system. Still, it’s not as heavy as some others, so I’ll classify it as mid-weight. The all-in-one linear array style enhances its portability. Even the handles make it easy to hold. The speaker and adjustable height spacer are in the base of the unit to ensure a single streamlined package. You can then carry it easily with one hand.


The bass, treble, and reverb capabilities on each XLR channel is perfect for both music and speech applications. I noticed that it blends it’s crossover treble and bass smoothly, but I do think the bass can sound better. It also gives me good reverb during use. Overall, the sound is excellent from the front and sides.


  • Linear array configuration
  • Powerful 6-channel mixer with controls
  • Perfect for different applications
  • Nice design features


  • It isn’t light in weight
  • It doesn’t have a microphone
  • Bass not loud enough

Bose L1 Compact Wireless

Bose L1 System

Product Details

  • Speakers: two sets (six drivers and one subwoofer)
  • Power: 200 watts maximum
  • Weight: 29.2 pounds (full assembly)
  • Frequency response: 65Hz – 14kHz
  • Dimension: 78.5 x13.25 x 16.75 inches (full assembly)
  • Enclosure: Polypropylene
  • Warranty: 2 years


The amplifier section of the Bose PA system has a maximum power rating of 200 watts. It utilizes six 2″ HF drivers to provide powerful sound. There is also a single bass 8″ LF driver that handles all low and some mid-range frequencies. Both LF and HF array sections each have a power of 65 watts. They also have a minimum frequency of 37.5 HZ and a maximum frequency of 18.5 kHz.

Its proprietary Spatial Dispersion technology features a fixed vertical control with 180o coverage. This coverage helps to deliver clear audio throughout your venue. You can position the loudspeaker behind or to the side, and you’ll hear what the audience hears. You can also use the two set-up positions (collapsed and extended) to tailor sounds. The Bose public address system offers a reduced vulnerability to feedback. Like the JBL system, it’s not battery powered.

Components and Connectivity

The Bose PA compact system has six input/output controls with two tone-match channels. These preset channels tailor the sound to work with a microphone and an acoustic guitar. However, it only has one equalizer on the microphone channel (channel 1). Its input connection ports include one XLR, one 1/4″, two RCA stereos, and one 1/8″. The output ports are one 1/4″ and two RCA stereo. It also has Soundtouch wireless link connectivity, which allows Bluetooth and WiFi music streaming. Like JBL, you won’t get a microphone with this PA system.


This PA system is small enough to fit into your back seat or trunk. It weighs 29.2 pounds when fully assembled and 24.6 pounds when it’s collapsed. You can use both configurations for either small or large spaces. Its extension carrying bag and power stand slip-on also make it easy to carry around.

Application and Coverage

This Bose sound system is suitable for solo or duo performance in a small club or bar. It can cover an audience of 100 people at most. The bass I got from this sound system was louder than that from JBL. However, it passed the line from being loud into being too heavy. The crossover between bass and treble was not very smooth or balanced. It did produce better treble coverage, but it doesn’t have a reverb feature.


  • Good sound coverage
  • Light and portable
  • Two set-up configuration
  • Six input/output channel mixer


  • Equalizer only on one channel
  • No reverb capability
  • Bass and treble crossover not smooth

The Best Pick

These JBL and Bose portable public address systems are both powerful and fit their intended use. The JBL system has an amplifier of 380 watts, a better option to the 200 watts you’ll get from the Bose system. Even it’s speaker power is higher.

With this difference in power, the JBL will be heavier, which is rightly so. It weighs 40.8 pounds but tries to enhance its portability with a linear style of arrangement.

Still, Bose is noticeably lighter with a weight of 29.2 pounds. It further gets lighter if you use it in a collapsed arrangement. It then has cases to enable you to travel with it in style.

Both systems have six controls for input and output mechanisms coupled with wireless connectivities. It’s also vital to state that they both have the same price.

Having used both sound systems, I’ll choose the JBL over the Bose. I did mention in the JBL Eon review that the treble and the bass crossover is smooth. This feature is unlike what you’ll get with Bose. JBL also has a reverb capability, which I love. Although its bass levels need improvement, I’ll pick it over the loud bass I got from Bose.


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JBL Eon One vs Bose L1 But Which PA System?

time to read: 9 min