Whether you’re heading to the beach or a weekend camping trip, Bluetooth speakers are an easy and affordable way to incorporate music or relaxing sounds into your leisure time. Bluetooth speakers are wireless and can sync with your smartphone, iPod, computer, or another device to play music. While there are many Bluetooth speakers on the market, investing in a quality one will get you more than a season’s worth of use out of the product. Considering factors like sound quality, wireless range, battery life, and portability, this guide rounds up some of the best picks for outdoor Bluetooth speakers.
- BEST OVERALL: Bose SoundLink Color Bluetooth Speaker II
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: JBL CLIP 3 Waterproof Portable Bluetooth Speaker
- BEST HIGH-END: The New SOUNDBOKS Bluetooth Performance Speaker
- RUGGED PICK: ECOXGEAR EcoBoulder+ Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker
- BEST WALL MOUNTED: Sound Appeal Wireless Streaming Patio Speakers
- BEST FOR LOUDNESS: JBL Boombox Waterproof Portable Bluetooth Speaker
- BEST FOR BASS LOVERS: Cambridge SoundWorks OontZ Angle 3 Bluetooth Speaker
- BEST FOR SONOS USERS: Sonos Move
- BEST RETRO DESIGN: Marshall Stockwell II Portable Bluetooth Speaker
- BEST PORTABLE: AOMAIS GO Bluetooth Speakers
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Outdoor Bluetooth Speakers
There are many factors to consider when shopping for the best outdoor Bluetooth speakers. There are pros and cons to each speaker. You’ll make the smartest purchase for your situation if you carefully consider how important factors like size, sound quality, and battery life are for your new outdoor Bluetooth speakers.
Size and Weight
If you’ll be moving your Bluetooth speakers from place to place, their size and weight are going to matter. When traveling, for example, most people don’t want to carry around large speakers, even if the sound quality is superb. For people who won’t be toting their Bluetooth speakers in their suitcases, speaker size may not matter as much. It’s important to remember that speakers that are heavy are not necessarily better quality, and vice versa. Most people prefer a speaker that is portable enough to easily fit in a bag or a backpack.
Portable vs. Permanent Installation
Whether a portable Bluetooth speaker or one that can be permanently installed is the right choice for you depends on how you plan on using the speaker. If you’re shopping for a speaker to attach to your outdoor patio and you don’t plan on moving it, opt for one that can be permanently installed. However, if you need the speaker for things like beach trips, camping, or tailgating, a portable speaker may be your best bet. The best outdoor Bluetooth speakers are designed to be somewhat portable for the ultimate wireless convenience.
Sound Quality and Volume
For most people, sound quality matters when choosing a speaker, as does the volume; volume is an essential consideration for those who plan on using outdoor Bluetooth speakers in loud areas, such as next to roadways or by the ocean. Not every Bluetooth speaker will be able to deliver the sound quality you’re looking for because different genres of music sound better on some speakers than on others. Buying a speaker with the best possible sound quality and volume output will give you the best listening experience possible. After all, what’s the point of investing in a Bluetooth speaker if you can’t even hear it?
Another thing to think about as you’re shopping for outdoor Bluetooth speakers is whether the speaker lets you adjust the sound quality based on the type of music you’re listening to. For example, you won’t need the same settings for an acoustic guitar album as you will for R&B. If you listen to the same genres of music pretty regularly, you might not care so much about altering the sound settings. For music aficionados who want the full experience of quality sound for a range of tunes, this could be an important feature to investigate.
Bluetooth outdoor speakers rely on another device (usually a smartphone) to play music, and that device will need to be located relatively close to the speaker in order to maintain connectivity and play music. The wireless range of outdoor Bluetooth speakers varies from approximately 30 feet to 100 feet, meaning your device will need to be somewhere within that range for the speakers to work. If it isn’t, your music might cut in and out—or the speakers may not play music at all. If there’s a chance that your connecting device will be a good distance away from your speakers, look for speakers that have a broader wireless range. If you’re shopping for a Bluetooth speaker for your 10-by-12-foot deck and you’ll be sitting on that deck playing music from your smartphone, range won’t matter as much.
No one wants to have to pause their beach party to recharge their Bluetooth speakers. Battery life is an essential consideration when investing in the best outdoor Bluetooth speakers, especially if you’re using the speakers during an event. Bluetooth speakers’ batteries typically last from 8 to 40 hours per charge, depending on the product. Like portability and wireless range, how important battery life is to you will depend on your individual circumstances. If you’re going on a weekend camping trip and you won’t have power, a long battery life is probably a top priority, but for a shorter tailgating event it might not matter if your speakers run out of juice after a few hours.
Finally, it’s important to note that playing music at high volumes can drain Bluetooth speakers’ batteries more quickly. If jamming out at top volume is important to you, research speakers that have the battery life to keep your party going.
The Ingress Protection (IP) number (X) is an indication of how resistant Bluetooth speakers are to the elements. The IPX rating is generally represented as IPXX, in which the first number rates the product for dust penetration while the second rates it for water penetration. For example, if a speaker is rated a 5 for protection against water but has no rating for protection against dust, the rating will read IPX5. The IPX scale ranges from 0 to 8, with 0 offering no protection against dust and water while speakers with a rating of 8 are protected from full submersion in water and dust penetration. This number is important when looking for the best outdoor Bluetooth speakers because it helps you understand how well your investment is protected against the weather.
How easy is it to move your Bluetooth speaker from place to place? This isn’t just a question of the speaker’s size and weight, but also whether it has handles, clips, wheels, or even a lanyard that helps you carry around the speaker. While transportability may not be a concern for shoppers looking for small speakers or outdoor speakers they’ll permanently mount to their home’s exterior, easy transportability is an important consideration if you’re shopping for larger speakers and you know you’ll be carrying them around. Take note of how easy larger speakers are to transport: Do they have wheels or handles? If you won’t be using your outdoor Bluetooth speakers during the off-season, consider how you’ll transport them to their storage space.
Many outdoor Bluetooth speakers on the market have optional features that further enhance your enjoyment of the products. For example, some speakers feature voice control, which means that you can activate the speaker or change playlists by talking to it. Some speakers offer a voice walk-through, which makes syncing your device (or several devices) with the speaker easy. Lighting effects, which add color and light to your music experience, is another cool feature shoppers might appreciate. These lights might come in handy if you’re bringing your speaker to areas where there’s no power, such as when camping or on the beach. Still other outdoor Bluetooth speakers have delightful and unexpected features such as built-in bottle openers, cup holders, and USB charging ports. These features won’t make your music sound better, but they can surely save a party or a weekend camping trip.
Our Top Picks
These outdoor Bluetooth speakers meet or exceed our stringent expectations for portability, wireless range, durability, sound quality, and value for money. From affordable options to higher-end models, options abound.
Weighing just over a pound and coming in a soft-touch exterior, the Bose SoundLink Color Bluetooth Speaker II gives you great sound in a smaller package. Measuring 2.2 by 5 by 5.2 inches, this Bluetooth speaker has an IPX4 waterproof rating and gives you eight hours of play per charge.
With voice prompts that make it easy to set up and use, this Bluetooth speaker can travel with you easily thanks to its diminutive size. You can also take hands-free phone calls by pairing the speaker to your smartphone.
Easy to use with great sound quality and a wireless range of about 30 feet, this portable outdoor Bluetooth speaker from Bose is sure to please.
JBL’s CLIP 3 offers terrific value in a portable outdoor Bluetooth speaker. Weighing just under 8 ounces and measuring 4.33 by 2.17 by 4.3 inches, this small speaker comes in a variety of fashionable colors. It’s IPX7 waterproof, which means it can withstand temporary submersion in water, and is housed in a protective rubber casing. Users can also make and receive crystal-clear phone calls on this noise-canceling speakerphone.
The CLIP 3 gives you 10 hours of playback on a charge, which should be plenty for people who are using the speaker while on-the-go throughout their day. The speaker’s integrated carabiner easily clips to tote bags, backpacks, or belt loops. Overall, JBL’s CLIP 3 gives you terrific sound quality at a bargain price.
If you’re looking for a larger speaker that can accommodate a big outdoor gathering, the SOUNDBOKS is worth investigating. This portable Bluetooth speaker provides about 40 hours of playback on a single charge, and can be fully recharged in about 3.5 hours.
The SOUNDBOKS does have a few downsides: First, at just over 33 pounds, it’s the heaviest speaker on this list. Measuring 31.5 by 19.69 by 15.75 inches, it’s pretty bulky too. Finally, it offers significantly less playback time when it blasted at full volume, but the good news is that most users won’t need to play it at full volume.
Long-lasting, durable, and splashproof—but not IPX rated—this speaker is our choice for those who need to power a big party with some loud, quality music.
Though this speaker is larger than a lot of the competition, it has several cool features and an excellent IPX rating that makes it worth a look. With built-in waterproof removable storage, Yeti cup holders, a bottle opener, adjustable sound quality, and voice control, this speaker has it all.
The ECOXGEAR can connect with your Bluetooth device a range of up to 100 feet, boasts an IP67 rating, and—get this—it floats. Not only can this speaker go with you on water-centered getaways, it can even go in the water with you.
In terms of battery life, this outdoor Bluetooth speaker can play at full volume for up to 10 hours on a single charge and at a lower volume, it can play for up to 100 hours. It can also connect to an AM/FM radio, and has a USB port to charge your devices.
This speaker’s size and weight are its only real drawbacks: It weighs a whopping 29 pounds and measures 12 by 15 by 20 inches. The good news is that it has oversized wheels and a telescoping handle for easier transportation, but you still might not want to take this big guy camping.
Featuring a Bluetooth range of up to 60 feet, these Wireless Streaming Indoor/Outdoor Weatherproof Patio Speakers by Sound Appeal are housed in a weatherproof and UV-resistant cabinet that comes in a range of colors. Though the speakers are designed for small to medium gatherings, you can pair them with other speakers for even more sound coverage.
Simple to install and set up, these wall-mounted speakers are great for outdoor get-togethers where you need to control sound from your device. These speakers come with an extension cord and speaker wire.
The JBL Boombox has terrific sound quality and, with two JBL bass radiators, lots of boom. Enjoy your day at the beach or in the pool without worry—this speaker is IPX7 waterproof, which means it can withstand temporary submersion in water.
This outdoor Bluetooth speaker boasts 24 hours of play time and can charge your devices while it’s in use. For larger events, you can connect multiple Boombox speakers for a complete listening experience. You can also connect two smartphones to the JBL Boombox and take turns DJing with a friend.
One of the speaker’s biggest drawbacks is that it takes about 6.5 hours to fully charge. Plan ahead if you need the speaker for an all-day event.
This small portable speaker delivers a lot for the price, especially in the bass department. Not only does it give you up to 14 hours of playing time on a single charge (with the volume at two-thirds of the max), it also allows you to connect a device that’s up to 100 feet away, which is a longer wireless distance than many other Bluetooth speakers. The OontZ Angle has an IPX5 rating, which means it’s protected against water splashes.
Another good thing about this portable speaker is that it has a built-in microphone, which enables you to take phone calls on the speaker. With its compact size—it weighs just over 9 ounces and measures 5.25 by 2.6 by 2.8 inches—the OontZ Angle fits easily in most bags and backpacks for easy transport.
This Bluetooth speaker is an affordable pick for bass lovers, especially compared to its larger and more expensive competitors. For those that need that bass pickup in their music but don’t want to break the bank, this one’s for you.
Those looking for an outdoor add-on to their Sonos speaker system won’t be disappointed with the Sonos Move Smart Speaker, which gives you up to 11 hours of continuous playtime on a charge. You can even use the Move with both WiFi and Bluetooth, making it a versatile speaker you can use both while at home and away.
With voice-controlled Amazon Alexa capability built right into the speaker, you can ask questions, order groceries, queue up your favorite song on a streaming service, and more. Sonos Move has an IP56 rating, meaning that it’s rated to stand up to both dust and water but it can’t be submerged in water. It can be connected to smartphones and other Bluetooth devices within a 30-foot range.
The only downside here is that the speaker weighs just over 6 pounds and measures 9.44 by 29 by 4.96 inches, which makes it a little bulky to transport.
With adjustable sound quality, a comfortable carrying handle, and an IPX4 rating, this portable speaker gives you classic Marshall vintage style and sound in a compact package. Weighing just over 3 pounds and measuring 7 by 6 by 2.5 inches, this speaker is small and lightweight enough to tote.
This outdoor speaker offers 20 hours of playing time with a full charge, which is pretty good for a unit of this size. It also has a Bluetooth connectivity range of about 30 feet, and a visual battery indicator so you know how much battery time you have left before you need a recharge. With excellent sound quality, the Marshall Stockwell II is for those looking for true vintage style for their outdoor adventures.
Offering a 40-hour playtime at 50 percent volume with a fast charge time (about 4 hours), this speaker offers great portability and comes with a USB charging port. It also has an IPX7 waterproof rating, which means it can withstand being submerged in water for up to 30 minutes. Weighing just over 4 pounds and measuring 13.5 by 7.50 by 3.8 inches, this speaker will easily fit in a backpack or a duffel bag. It has a built-in handle for easy carrying too.
This portable Bluetooth speaker delivers 40 watts of sound; pair two together for 80 watts of surround sound. It has a handle that makes it easy for carrying from place to place, and its size means you can fit it in a larger bag should you need to. Durable and convenient, the AOMAIS GO Bluetooth Speaker gives you a lot for the price.
FAQs About Your New Outdoor Bluetooth Speakers
How can you care for your speakers and place them for maximum sound quality? Find your questions answered here.
Q. Where should outdoor speakers be placed?
If you have multiple speakers in your outdoor space, they should be angled towards each other at least 10 feet apart for optimum sound. If you have just a single speaker, place it in a spot within the wireless range that’s also close to where the action is.
Q. Can you play two Bluetooth speakers at the same time?
For most speakers on this list, the answer is yes. Many Bluetooth speakers can be paired with multiple speakers of the same type so you can amp up your music coverage. Bluetooth speakers made by different manufacturers can’t usually be connected, but you should be able to sync your device to both units and use them individually.
Q. How do you protect outdoor speakers from rain?
Most of the Bluetooth outdoor speakers on this list are designed to handle rain exposure. For those with a lower IPX rating, you can use an umbrella or weatherproof bags or covers to keep moisture out.
Q. How do you keep outdoor Bluetooth speakers clean when they are not in use?
The best way to clean your Bluetooth speakers is with a clean cloth. Refrain from using any type of liquid to clean your speakers. When not in use, store your speakers in a case that’s protected from the elements so they’ll work perfectly when you need them again.