Best Bluetooth Speakers in 2023 (January Reviews)

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Products Updated January 24, 2023
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The best Bluetooth speaker is the one that can fill any room with rich, full sound without distortion. It also features portability and convenience as it connects to any other device that’s Bluetooth enabled. They’ve also got great battery life and can be used with devices like Google Home and Amazon Echo.

While these are some of the best speakers you can buy, they won’t produce the same high-quality sound as a traditional speaker. That said, they’re ideal for people who want the flexibility of something portable on a budget. If you’re someone who likes to take your speaker with you, Bluetooth speakers with high IP ratings for dust and water resistance should be high on your list.

Keep reading this buying guide to learn more about choosing a Bluetooth speaker that meets your needs.

Top Bluetooth Speakers

#1 DOSS Soundbox Touch Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Award: TOP PICK

WHY WE LIKE IT: Its waterproof rating allows it to be taken to a pool, and with up to 20 hours of playback, its battery lasts long enough to get through a day of listening. It can also be connected to a phone via Bluetooth to receive calls since it also has a built-in microphone.

Pros
  • Built in microphone to answer calls
  • Offers up to 20 hours of playback on a single charge
  • IPX5 Waterproof for handling gentle splashes
Cons
  • Not fully waterproof

From its looks, the Doss Bluetooth speaker seems like it has been made for users who prioritize both looks and portability. The little speaker looks pretty good and packs quite a punch since it can deliver up to 20 hours of playtime. The speaker is pretty well-built thanks to its aluminum casing, and it delivers stereo sound thanks to its dual full-range drivers. The speaker’s top panel is touch-enabled so that users can change the volume or switch between pause and playback with a tap of their finger. The speaker also has a built-in microphone, so once connected with a phone via Bluetooth, owners will also be able to receive and answer phone calls. Unfortunately, some may not like that it is not fully waterproof.

Weighing only 1.23 pounds, this Bluetooth speaker should be pretty easy to carry around, and it has a battery that’ll take only 3 to 4 hours to get to full charge. The speaker also offers the great sound quality, as it has been certified to produce less than 1% harmonic distortion. It can also handle a little bit of a splash since it is IPX5 waterproof, so owners shouldn’t be afraid to carry it to the pool every now and then.

#2 JBL Flip 4 Bluetooth Speaker

Award: HONORABLE MENTION

WHY WE LIKE IT: It is an ideal option for anyone who would need to submerge their speaker underwater every now and then. It can also be connected to other JBL speakers for amplified sound and has a battery that only takes 3.5 hours to get charged to full capacity.

Pros
  • Can be submerged underwater without any consequences to its functioning
  • It has a noise-canceling feature for clear calls
  • Connect feature that allows it to connect more than 100 JBL speakers
Cons
  • Cannot produce low bass

JBL has an outstanding reputation for producing some of the most sought-after Bluetooth Speakers on the market, and the JBL Flip 4 is no different. Released in 2017, the Bluetooth speaker offers up to 12 hours of continuous streaming, and because of its IPX7 rating, it can be submerged in water for up to 30 minutes without any consequences to its functioning. The speaker is powered by a 3000mAh battery, which takes up to 3.5 hours to get charged to full capacity. The speaker can also be integrated with both Google Assistant and Siri through a smartphone, but its inability to produce low bass may turn off some people.

The JBL Flip 4 also features JBL’s Connect feature, where users will be able to connect more than 100 other JBL speakers to amplify the sound produced. The speaker can also handle up to two smartphones or tablets, so users will be able to alternate the different music sources. Its noise-canceling feature lets users enjoy crystal clear sound when taking calls, and weighing only 1.1 pounds, it is incredibly lightweight for easy portability.

#3 Bose SoundLink Color II Bluetooth Speaker

Award: BEST FOR COLOR VARIETY

WHY WE LIKE IT: It is available in up to five colors and can last up to 8 hours on a single charge. It also has a power-saving feature that will have it shut down after 18 minutes of not being in use and can be connected to other Bose speakers for stereo sound.

Pros
  • Can be connected to other Bose speakers through the Bose Connect App
  • Lasts up to 8 hours on a single charge
  • Available in a variety of colors
Cons
  • No equalizer for tuning sound to a listener’s requirements

The Bose Soundlink Color II is a square-shaped Bluetooth speaker with silicone covering that makes it pretty easy to hold and dual passive radiators that amplify its bass notes. Its water resistance rating is rated as IPX4, meaning it shouldn’t have any issues with gentle water splashes. Its battery life will last up to 8 hours on a single charge, and when integrated with the Bose Connect App, owners will be able to pair it with another Bose speaker to create a stereo sound or amplify audio content. Still, it does not have any Equalizer for tuning sound to a listener’s requirements.

The battery on this speaker will take slightly more than 4 hours to get charged to full capacity. It also comes with a power-saving feature that will have it shut down automatically after about 18 minutes if there isn’t any audio output connected to it. It also has a micro-USB charging port, and since it is available in a soft black, aqua blue, citron, polar white, and coral red trim, buyers will have a variety of options to choose from depending on their taste and interior decor.

#4 MusiBaby M68 Portable Outdoor Bluetooth Speakers

Award: BEST FOR 360° SURROUND SOUND

WHY WE LIKE IT: It is ideal for creating a 360° full-range sound and is also waterproof to the extent of handling splashes. It has an impressive Bluetooth range of up to 100 ft and can pair with another Bluetooth audio device for stereo sound.

Pros
  • Produces 360° sound for full range listening
  • Can handle light splashes of water
  • Long range Bluetooth connection of up to 30 meters
Cons
  • Speaker cannot be integrated with voice assistants

The MusiBaby M68 portable speaker is a cylindrically shaped speaker that is 4.9 inches tall and is capable of up to 1500 minutes of playback. The Bluetooth speaker delivers 360° sound with rich bass, and since it is IPX5 waterproof, it is largely resistant to any light splashes of water. The speaker supports Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity and has a connectivity range of up to 100ft. It can also be connected to non-Bluetooth devices thanks to a 3.5mm audio cable, and since it also has support for dual wireless pairing, owners will be able to connect two of them together for a stereo sound. Still, the speaker cannot be integrated with any voice assistants.

The battery on the M68 will only require about 2 hours to get charged to full capacity, and its sound quality is also pretty good since its bass, mids, and highs sound very well balanced. The speaker also comes with an AUX port for private listening and features a USB and SD card slot that owners can plug in to play content from their devices.

#5 Oontz Angle 3 Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Award: BEST FOR PORTABILITY

WHY WE LIKE IT: Weighing only 0.7 pounds, the speaker is reasonably lightweight so moving around with it is fairly easy to do. It also has an IPX5 water resistance rating and is available in up to 10 color trims.

Pros
  • 0.7 pound weight makes it ultra portable
  • Available in up to 10 color trims
  • Speakerphone functionality
Cons
  • No voice assistance support
  • No microphone

The Oontz Angle 3 Bluetooth speaker has a unique triangular design and can easily fit into one’s hand. Weighing only 0.7 pounds, it is one of the most portable options on the market, and since it has an IPX5 waterproof rating, it can easily withstand light splashing. The speaker’s battery life will last up to 16 hours on a single charge, and this is pretty fair considering that it’ll take about 4 hours to get to full capacity. It also comes with a power-saving setting, where it turns off after 15 minutes in case there isn’t any audio playing. However, it has no voice assistant support, and it also does not have a microphone.

The speaker can easily be stood up vertically or laid down horizontally, and since it comes with a built-in microphone, it can be used as a speaker once connected to a phone via Bluetooth. The speaker’s sound quality is also pretty decent, as it uses a Digital Signal Processor to prevent any instances of sound distortion, especially at high volumes. It has an impressive 100 ft Bluetooth range for good connectivity and is powered by a fairly large 2500mAh rechargeable battery.

#6 Ultimate Ears Boom 3 Portable Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker

Award: BEST FOR OUTDOOR USE

WHY WE LIKE IT: Its IP67 rating means it can withstand water and dust, making it an ideal choice for outdoor use. It can also be configured through an app to finetune its sound quality.

Pros
  • IP67 rating makes it ideal for outdoor use
  • Sound quality and output can be adjusted through the Boom app
  • Can be connected to as many as 150 other speakers
Cons
  • Large and – controls tend to get difficult to press

The Ultimate Ears Boom 3 portable waterproof speaker is a uniquely designed alternative with an exceptional IP67 rating that makes it dust and water-resistant. It comes with a built-in hook for easy carrying and is available in a wide range of two-tone fabric finishes. The speaker’s controls are situated on its top casing, where there is an off/on button and a ‘magic button’, which can be used to play, pause or skip tracks. The and – volume controls are embedded onto its fabric grille, but some users have complained that they tend to get a little difficult to press.

The Boom 3 speaker can get as loud as 90 decibels and features two 2-inch drivers and 4-inch passive radiators to create a room-filling sound. Through the Boom app, owners will be able to adjust the Equalizer, personalize the sound produced to their taste, and connect one speaker to as many as 150 others to create a surround sound experience.

Beginner’s Guide to Bluetooth Speakers

What Exactly Is a Bluetooth Speaker?

A Bluetooth speaker is a device that uses Bluetooth technology to connect wirelessly to other devices and play audio through its built-in speakers. These speakers are portable and can be easily carried from one place to another, making them convenient for listening to music or other audio on the go with excellent sound quality. They are often used in conjunction with smartphones, laptops, and other devices that have Bluetooth capabilities.

How Exactly Do Bluetooth Speakers Function?

These speakers function by using Bluetooth technology to connect wirelessly to other devices. When a speaker with Bluetooth is turned on, it enters discovery mode and broadcasts its presence to nearby devices. If a compatible device with Bluetooth capabilities, such as a smartphone or laptop, is within range and has its Bluetooth feature enabled, it can connect to the speaker. The speaker itself contains a small computer chip that processes the audio signal and drives the speakers to produce sound. Most of these speakers also have physical controls on the device itself, allowing you to adjust the volume levels, skip tracks, and perform other functions without needing to use the connected device.

What Is the Range on Bluetooth Speakers?

The range of a Bluetooth speaker varies depending on the specific model and its design. Typically, Bluetooth has a range of around 30 feet in open space, but this can be affected by obstacles such as walls and other objects. More expensive speakers may have a longer range of up to 100 feet or more. In most cases, the wireless Bluetooth range of a speaker will be sufficient for use within a single room or outdoor area but may not be suitable for larger spaces or for use over longer distances.

How Long Do Bluetooth Speakers Last?

These speakers typically give you a lifespan of around five to seven years if maintained properly. Since Bluetooth models are portable speakers, you may find that they can get damaged easier or wear out faster, but if you store them in a carrying case, you can minimize this risk. You’ll also need to consider battery life. Most rechargeable batteries give you 300 to 500 charge cycles before they need to be replaced.

Insider Tip

When were Bluetooth speakers invented? Bluetooth was first developed in 1989 by Dr. Jaap Haartsen while working for the Swedish telecommunications company Ericsson Mobile. However, the first speaker using the technology didn’t come out until 2006. 

How to Choose a Bluetooth Speaker

Step 1. What Are You Using Your Bluetooth Speakers For?

When you compare wired and wireless speakers, you’ll find that options with Bluetooth functionality are much more versatile and flexible. However, it’s still important to consider your individual scenario. If you plan on taking your Bluetooth speaker outside for a pool party, you’ll want to consider a waterproof rating and rugged design for better protection. If you need a party speaker, then you’ll want larger speakers with tons of volume. Consider the way you plan on using the speaker and purchase an option that fits those needs while still providing a balanced sound quality that you will enjoy.

Step 2. Are You Traveling with Your Bluetooth Speakers?

If you plan on traveling with your speakers, then you’ll need to consider three crucial factors: portability, water resistance, dust resistance, and battery life. Portable speakers are easier to carry and easier to pack away. Find an option that fits your bags or pockets for the ultimate travel speaker. If you’re traveling anywhere near water or swimming pools, you’ll want an outdoor speaker with an IP rating for dust and water resistance. This way, you won’t need to worry about water exposure. Finally, try to find a speaker with plenty of battery power so that you can listen for many hours of playtime on a single charge.

STAT: 7% of users around the world listen to music using Bluetooth or smart speakers. (source)

Step 3. What Do You Want to Connect Your Bluetooth Speakers To?

The way you connect your speaker to your different audio source devices can determine which model you need to purchase. One popular choice is to connect the speaker to a smartphone or other mobile device using Bluetooth technology. Virtually all smartphones today are compatible with Bluetooth technology. Another option is to connect the speaker to a computer or laptop using Bluetooth. Some speakers can connect to your Apple devices more seamlessly with Apple Airplay. Comparing AirPlay and Bluetooth, AirPlay is best if you mainly have Apple devices. Bluetooth, on the other hand, is more widely used and is generally more versatile and compatible with a wide range of devices.

Step 4. What Features Do You Want from Your Bluetooth Speakers?

One important feature to consider in speakers with Bluetooth is sound quality, which can vary depending on the size and design of the speaker. Additionally, consider the rechargeable battery life of the speaker. Other features to consider include the speaker’s waterproofing, built-in mics, wireless range, wireless charging, USB-C charging, and connectivity options. Comparing Bluetooth and Wi-Fi speakers, Bluetooth options are generally more portable and easier to use, as they do not require a Wi-Fi network to function. However, Wi-Fi speakers may offer additional features and capabilities, such as smart speaker capabilities like connecting to streaming services or using voice assistants like Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.

outside bluetooth being used

Step 5. How Much Should You Expect To Spend on Bluetooth Speakers?

Bluetooth speakers range in price from $50 to over $200, depending on the brand and model you choose to purchase. Most decent options sit right around the $100 mark, though. Features like extended wireless range, voice assistant capabilities, and waterproofing will often raise the price of your speaker, so keep that in mind while shopping around.

Types of Bluetooth Speakers

Bluetooth Speakers for On the Go

  • Bluetooth Motorcycle Speakers
  • Bluetooth Speaker for Car
  • Tailgate Speakers
  • Golf Cart Bluetooth Speakers
  • Motorcycle Helmet Speakers
  • Bike Speakers
  • Boat Bluetooth Speakers
  • Bluetooth Ceiling Speakers
  • Jobsite Bluetooth Speakers
  • Wearable Speakers

Special Purpose Bluetooth Speakers

speaker out of bag

Bluetooth Speakers by Feature

Speakers with Wireless Capabilities

Top Bluetooth Speaker Brands

  • JBL Bluetooth Speakers
  • Loud JBL Speakers
  • Ultimate Ears Speakers
  • Anker Bluetooth Speakers

Owning Bluetooth Speakers

Connect Your Speakers to a Device

To connect your speaker to an audio source device, you’ll first want to ensure that both the speaker and the device are powered on and in range of each other. The speaker will typically enter a discovery mode, in which it broadcasts its presence to nearby devices. On the device, go to the Bluetooth settings and enable Bluetooth if it is not already on. The device should then be able to recognize the speaker and display it as an available device to which it can connect. Select the speaker from the list of available devices and follow any prompts to complete the connection. Once the speaker and the device are paired, you can then play your favorite music or other audio content through the speaker.

While the process of connecting one of these speakers is generally the same between different kinds of audio source devices, there are some nuances to be aware of. Be sure to refer to your speaker’s user manual to learn how to perform the following connection processes:

Insider Tip

How Are Bluetooth Speakers Powered? Generally speaking, it’s common for Bluetooth speakers to be battery-powered. Some models can be recharged using a USB cord, AC adapter, or other types of power cord connections, while a few others are solar-powered.

Securing Your Bluetooth Speakers

While your speaker is in discovery mode, anyone with a Bluetooth-capable device can connect to it. One option to secure your speaker is to use a password or PIN code to prevent unauthorized access. This can be done by going into the Bluetooth settings on your device and enabling the security feature. Another option is to physically secure the speaker by using a locking mechanism or placing it in a secure location where it is not easily accessible to others. Additionally, it is important to keep the speaker’s firmware up to date, as this can help to protect against security vulnerabilities and keep your speaker safe from potential attacks.

secure bluetooth speaker

Play Music from Two Different Bluetooth Speakers

If you want to play music from two different speakers for the best audio quality and 360-degree sound, you will first need to connect each speaker to your mobile device. Once both speakers are paired with your device, you can use the audio settings on your device to select which speaker you want to play the audio through. In some cases, you may be able to use a third-party app or software to control which speaker plays your audio content. Additionally, some speakers have the ability to connect to each other wirelessly, allowing you to play the same audio through both speakers simultaneously. This can be useful for creating a stereo sound experience or for filling a larger space with powerful sound quality.

Cleaning and Maintaining Your Bluetooth Speakers

Keeping your speaker in tip-top shape is one of the best things you can do to extend its overall lifespan. Before you start cleaning or maintaining your speaker, unplug it and power it down. Then, use a soft, dry cloth to gently wipe down the speaker’s surface. If the speaker is particularly dirty, you can use a slightly damp cloth to wipe it down, but be sure to avoid getting any water or other liquids inside of the ports. You should also store your speaker in a dry, dust-free environment to prevent the need for extensive repairs or cleaning.

Troubleshooting Problems with Your Bluetooth Speakers

When it comes to general troubleshooting for speakers, there are a few steps you can take that often resolve the most common issues. For starters, be sure the rechargeable battery has a full charge, and that the speaker is turned on. If you’re experiencing static noise in your Bluetooth speaker, you may want to try restarting both the speaker and the audio source device to ensure a proper connection is made. If your Bluetooth speakers are cutting out, check that both devices are within range of each other.

Disassembling Screwless Bluetooth Speakers

If you need to disassemble a screwless Bluetooth speaker, it’s crucial that you take your time and use care to avoid damaging the speaker. First, turn off the speaker and unplug it. Then, look for any seams or other openings and use a non-metal tool to pry open the speaker gently. As you disassemble the speaker, be sure to keep track of any screws or fasteners you remove from the internal components. It may also be helpful to take a picture or draw a diagram so that you remember how to put it all back together.

Bluetooth Speakers FAQs

How do you play FM radio through Bluetooth speakers?

First, you’ll need to make sure you have a device capable of playing FM radio to connect to your Bluetooth speaker. Some speakers have this functionality already built-in, but they are few and far between. Once connected to a device with FM radio, simply turn on the radio functionality on that source device and enjoy your favorite radio stations through your speaker.

What’s the difference between Bluetooth 4 and 5?

Bluetooth 4, also known as Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), was introduced in 2011 and was designed to provide a low-power, wireless connection for devices that need to operate for extended periods of time on a small battery. Bluetooth 5, on the other hand, was introduced in 2016 and is designed to provide a faster, more reliable, and more power-efficient connection than Bluetooth 4.

How do Bluetooth speakers stay waterproof?

The most common way that Bluetooth speakers are made waterproof is through the use of water-resistant materials and seals to cover the speakers and other openings on the speaker to prevent water from entering. Additionally, seals and gaskets can be used to create a tight, watertight barrier around the speaker's ports and other openings. Some Bluetooth speakers are also designed with waterproofing features such as waterproof coating or water-resistant components, which can further protect the speaker from water damage.

What does it mean if Bluetooth speakers have aptX HD?

If a Bluetooth speaker has aptX HD, it means that the speaker is capable of receiving and playing high-definition (HD) audio using the aptX HD codec. The aptX HD codec is a type of audio compression technology that allows for the transmission of high-resolution audio over a Bluetooth connection. Compared to other Bluetooth codecs, aptX HD is able to deliver higher-quality audio with less loss of sound quality, resulting in a more immersive and realistic listening experience.
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