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What features make the best waterproof speaker? First, the best waterproof outdoor speakers should have excellent sound quality. If you’re looking for a speaker to play music at outdoor parties in open spaces, you’ll want plenty of bass performance to liven up the party.
Next, the best waterproof and water-resistant portable speakers should come with an IP rating, showing they’ve been tested and certified to a specific level of water resistance. The higher the rating, the better the water resistance, which is especially important if you plan to spend any time at all using it around the pool or hot tub. A waterproof speaker helps ensure some stray splashing doesn’t cut off the music, keeping the party going when things get wet.
Finally, for top-rated WiFi speakers and Bluetooth speaker units, experts recommend at least two to three hours of battery life on a full charge. However, many of today’s outdoor speaker options do much better, and some party speakers offer nearly all-day performance, with several of these great Bluetooth speakers providing as many as 7 or 8 hours of playtime on a single charge.
Portable water-resistant speakers are also a solid choice for outdoor adventures such as day hikes, camping trips, and boat rides. With the right waterproof rating, you won’t have to worry about ruining your indoor speaker at a picnic by the waterfall.
Keep reading to learn more about the top-rated waterproof speakers on the market and how to choose the best speaker for your needs.
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: It has an IPX7 waterproof rating, which means it can be submerged underwater for up to 30 minutes. It also offers up to 12 hours of playback and will only take 2.5 hours to get charged to full capacity.
The JBL Flip 5 is a cylindrical Bluetooth speaker that is a pretty popular option, especially for users who want to enjoy their music next to the pool or even under bad weather. This is because the speaker has an IPX7 waterproof rating, which means that it can be submerged in water at a depth of up to one meter for a full 30 minutes. The speaker will keep playing music for up to 12 hours before its 4800mAh battery needs a recharge and will only need 2.5 hours to get charged to full capacity. Still, some people may not appreciate that it does not have an AUX-in port or microphone.
The JBL Flip 5 has a frequency response range of between 65 Hz to 20kHz, and on its top casing, it has a play/pause button, volume controls, and a PartyBoost button that allows owners to pair two PartyBoost enabled speakers for stereo sound. Speaking of which, the sound quality on the Flip 5 is also pretty good, as the speakers can reach good bass levels and also generate pretty accurate mids and highs.
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: It has a long battery life that allows for playtime of up to 24 hours and LED lighting that can create the perfect atmosphere when playing music. It also has a built-in microphone for answering calls and a carabiner for easy attachment.
The Eboda B18P is a waterproof speaker that happens to be an excellent option for users who would like to enjoy their music when in the great outdoors. Its IPX7 rating means it can come into contact with mud, sand, or dust, and its functioning would still not be affected, just like the Braven BRV-1 Bluetooth speaker. It can also be submerged in water with no apparent damage to its functioning, so it can be used to play music in the shower or when moving around under rainfall. The speaker is available in up to nine different color options and also features LED lighting that can help create the perfect lighting atmosphere when playing music. The speaker also boasts Bluetooth 5.0 technology and has an impressive connection range of 33 feet. Still, some previous users were not too happy that they could not charge while listening to music simultaneously.
This waterproof speaker delivers stereo sound since it consists of two speakers, and with a playtime of up to 24 hours, it is perfect for users who want to be able to move around with their music. The speaker also has a built-in microphone for answering calls, and since it also comes with a carabiner, owners will be able to hang or attach it to their bikes, backpacks, or anywhere else they would find convenient.
Award: BEST FOR LONG PLAYTIME
WHY WE LIKE IT: It can keep playing music for up to 40 hours, courtesy of its 12,000mAh rechargeable battery. It also has a solid handle for easy carrying and can function as a power bank that can be used to charge devices at any time.
The W-KING D9-1 Bluetooth speaker is an excellent choice for anyone who would appreciate its sturdy design, and since it comes with four drivers that also feature double passive subwoofers, it is capable of delivering very impressive and chunky bass levels. The speaker also has double tweeters for relaying high-frequency sounds, and thanks to its use of DSP technology, its audio stays distortion-free even at high volumes. The speaker’s use of Bluetooth 5.0 technology allows it to connect all Bluetooth-enabled devices within a range of 33 feet, but even though it comes with a USB port, it cannot play music from a thumb drive.
The Bluetooth speaker can deliver up to 40 hours of playtime when playing music at the lowest volume, and since it has an IPX6 waterproof rating, owners will be able to carry it to the pool and use it under different weather and outdoor conditions. It also comes with a solid handle for easy carrying, and since it also features a microphone, it can also function as a loudspeaker for hands-free calls. For non-Bluetooth devices, owners will be able to use its 3.5mm AUX port, and since it also comes with a USB port, the speaker can also be used as a power bank to charge smart devices.
Award: BEST FOR PORTABILITY
WHY WE LIKE IT: It weighs only 0.24 pounds and comes with an integrated carabiner that can be attached to backpacks or clothes for easy carrying. It is available in five colors and has a built-in microphone that allows it to be used as a loudspeaker.
Similar to the Anker Soundcore Flare, the Altec Lansing Mini H20 waterproof speaker is compact yet playfully designed and is capable of dealing with harsh outdoor conditions thanks to its IP67 waterproof, dustproof, and shockproof rating. It is one of the few speakers that comes with an integrated carabiner, which allows users to make easy attachments to their backpacks or bicycles when outdoors. The speaker is available in five different colors, and on its top casing, it has power, volume up, and volume down controls for easy navigation. However, its 6-hour battery life may not be enough for some.
The speaker also features a built-in microphone, so owners will only have to pair their smartphone with it to allow hands-free communication. It is also designed to float on water, so users shouldn’t hesitate to bring it along when heading to the pool. Weighing only 0.24 pounds, it is pretty lightweight and takes about 4 hours to get fully charged.
Award: BEST FOR RANGE OF CONNECTIVITY
WHY WE LIKE IT: It has extended connectivity and can also have music playing for up to 30 hours. It also has LED lighting on its top and bottom that can be configured to light up in sync with the music being played.
The Ortizan X10 is a nice little portable Bluetooth speaker that is available in up to seven colors and is equipped with 24W of stereo audio drivers for impressive sound quality. The speaker can have music playing for up to 30 hours, and since it has an IPX7 waterproof rating, it can handle adverse weather conditions and even get submerged up to 3 ft underwater for close to 30 minutes. The Bluetooth speaker boasts Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity and an impressive 66ft range that is almost double what other speakers in the same category are capable of. Still, to achieve a 30-hour playback time, users will have to play music at a very low volume.
The speakers produce 360° stereo sound for immersive listening and have LED lighting on their top and bottom edges that light up in sync with the music being played. It also features an on-board equalizer that allows users to switch between effects such as vocal, 3D deep bass, and extra bass. It also has a TF-card slot to play media from an SD card and an AUX-in port for users who wish to play music from their non-Bluetooth devices.
Award: BEST FOR BATHROOM USE
WHY WE LIKE IT: Its small, rounded size makes it very easy to pack, and since it has a lanyard, it’ll be very easy to hang in the shower or attach to a backpack. It is available in six colors and has a built-in microphone that allows it to function as a speakerphone.
This Insmy C12 portable Bluetooth speaker is a small, rounded speaker with 5 Watt drivers for producing a loud and high definition sound. It is capable of a decent 12-hour playtime courtesy of its 1200mAh battery, and since it supports the Bluetooth 5.0 standard, it can maintain a strong connection from a device up to 66ft away. Once depleted, its battery will only take 3 hours to get charged, and since it is also IPX7 waterproof, it can be submerged for up to 1 meter and close to 30 minutes, making it perfect for use in the shower. However, its lanyard cannot be removed.
The speaker comes with a lanyard for easy carrying, and since it has dual opposing passive radiators, it can pump out sound while still maintaining a low rate of vibration. The speaker can also function as a speakerphone when connected to smart devices, and since it has a built-in microphone, it can be great for receiving calls.
A waterproof speaker is generally any speaker with waterproof housing. Waterproof and water-resistant speakers come with a two-digit “IP” rating that represents their level of water and dust/ dirt resistance. Most experts consider an IP rating of IP67 or above to be “waterproof” as opposed to merely “splash proof.” In that case, you won’t want to read our Marshall Stockwell 2 review, since it only has an IPX4 rating.
True waterproof speakers can handle submersion in up to 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes. Some waterproof portable speakers add dust resistance and a drop rating. Some aquatic adventure speakers also have a drop rating, certifying their ability to withstand drops from a specified height.
The main thing that sets waterproof speakers apart from regular speakers and most indoor smart speaker options is their waterproof design. Most premiere outdoor speakers have an “IPxx” rating for dust and water resistance. The first digit refers to dust and dirt protection, while the second digit represents water resistance, and the higher the number in either position, the more resistant it is to that particular thing. An IPx7 product can be submerged in up to 1 meter of freshwater for up to 30 minutes, for example.
An outdoor water-resistant speaker may also have additional ruggedness built-in. Some durable and portable Bluetooth speaker models also have dust resistance and impact resistance, so you can take them with you to the beach or an outdoor party.
Aside from their water and splash resistance, waterproof wireless speakers are smaller and more portable than non-waterproof indoor speakers. Unlike most home theater speakers and DJ speakers, they are nearly all battery-powered. Most of these versatile waterproof speaker units connect with a mobile device wirelessly via Bluetooth.
Waterproof wireless speakers more often have a cylindrical design to provide 360-degree sound output. They typically use directional drivers, cone woofers, and dome tweeters to deliver high-quality sound with a compact design. Unlike larger home Hi-Fi units or DJ speakers, portable water-resistant speakers rarely need a separate subwoofer or AV receiver. Some waterproof Bluetooth 5.0 speaker options come with stereo pairing abilities, however.
Waterproof models have smart features like voice assistants, Amazon Alexa, or Google Assistant. Many top-rated waterproof Bluetooth Speaker models come with the option of downloading a companion app.
Like other modern speakers, a water-resistant outdoor speaker or Bluetooth shower speaker uses audio transducers with digital signal processing and built-in analog or digital amplifiers. Also, like other small speakers, waterproof models often use passive radiators to improve bass output and mid-range sound.
Waterproof speakers take electric signals from an audio input and translate them to powerful sound using magnetic sound drivers, cone-shaped resonators, and high-frequency vibrating tweeters. Many of the latest waterproof Bluetooth speaker types also include subwoofers with passive bass radiators or some other airflow resonance management, letting a diminutive speaker produce a surprisingly loud sound.
Some models boost sound quality with powerful neodymium-magnet drivers that produce a fuller sound for a given driver size.
Most outdoor speakers and waterproof shower or workout speakers use wireless input protocols such as Bluetooth. A wireless connection simplifies adding water resistance, so almost all speakers with an IP rating of IP67 or above are wireless.
Like other portable speakers on the market, waterproof models typically use a rechargeable battery for a power source. Depending on the level of water resistance, the charging port may have a watertight cover that you’ll need to open before plugging the speaker in.
You might want to consider a new waterproof, portable sound option for your next pool party, BBQ, or picnic. A waterproof speaker helps ensure you can keep your favorite music going even in wet, splashy environments. The most rugged models, which come with dust and drop ratings and weather sealing, also make a great choice for trips to the beach, camping trips, and hiking. These are solid options that will usually have a carry strap or carabiner clip to attach to a backpack and have decent audio performance.
You don’t have to have a line-up of outdoor parties to benefit from a waterproof speaker. A Bluetooth shower speaker or small, waterproof 360-degree speaker can be great for listening to music in the bathroom or the kitchen. They can add to your peace of mind if you like to hear music while cooking or doing the dishes. Waterproof speakers mean you won’t have to worry about splashing or beverage spills.
New waterproof speakers not only have an easier time connecting with mobile devices and laptops, they often produce much improved audio quality. Older small speakers tended to have a “tinny” sound, whereas new models, such as the Boom speaker and Wonderboom lines, produce a fuller sound with excellent bass and mid-range.
Waterproof speakers occupy several distinct niches in terms of the price range, durability rating, size, and audio quality. As such, they can vary greatly in terms of how long they last, with some models likely to keep playing for five or more years, while others can expect about a 1-3 year life cycle. Small, highly portable adventure speakers may survive getting dunked or subjected to splashes of water and tossed around at the beach. Still, they generally have small rechargeable Li-ion batteries with a lifespan of about 500-1000 charge cycles and charges via USB.
Some water-resistant Bluetooth speaker models deliver more premium sound quality and come with more battery power and high-end materials to match their stylish design. These speakers tend to last about 5 years or more if taken care of, though they may not have the dust rating or dive ratings of some basic “clip & suction cup” adventure speakers.
Experts suggest adhering to the product guidelines and making sure to clean your waterproof speakers after they’ve gotten wet. In general, they also suggest cleaning outdoor speakers with a towel or microfiber cloth if they’ve been exposed to sand or saltwater. To help maximize the longevity of your speaker battery, avoid charging it when it’s very hot — like in direct sunlight on a hot day — and store the speaker somewhere cool and dry when it’s not in use.
Various factors can help you determine the right waterproof speaker model for your needs. You’ll want to decide how much water resistance you need and whether you need a model with a rating for dust and drops as well. Also, consider the type of music you usually play and how much volume you’ll need. For solo hiking or playing music at a quiet campsite, a small 5-watt clip speaker may be loud enough, whereas, at pool parties, picnics, backyard barbecues, and outdoor movie nights in open spaces, you may want a more powerful speaker with a balanced sound.
Depending on where you’re planning to take your portable speaker, you may want to consider a rugged, drop-tested, and submersible speaker with an IP67 or higher rating for water resistance. If you’re mainly looking for a little extra peace of mind when listening to music at home near beverages, you may not need extra features like a rating for dust ingress.
If you’re planning to use a waterproof portable Bluetooth speaker as the main music source for a backyard party or picnic, you may want to look for a model that offers directional drivers and 360-degree audio, passive radiators for bass quality, and plenty of Bluetooth range. You might also want to consider speakers that can pair with similar units to create a stereo or surround-sound audio experience.
More battery life is almost always better when it comes to wireless portable Bluetooth speakers. The trade-off is usually longer charging times and more weight, but today’s USB-C charging helps some of the top-rated waterproof speakers charge quickly. If you’re traveling or headed outdoors for long hikes or camping trips, you might want to look for a speaker that doubles as a power bank. Though if you don’t like the sound of charging batteries, consider the wired speaker in our Nest Audio review.
If you want a portable Bluetooth speaker that also functions as a smart built-in voice assistant, you might want to prioritize models that offer compatibility with your digital assistant platform of choice. Speaking of digital assistance, if you want to learn how to connect Google Home to a Bluetooth speaker, we can help with that.
Some models now include additional features like a built-in mic that enables voice activation. And slightly related to smart features, but if you own a device that you want to play audio from that doesn’t use Bluetooth, consider a model that can use a physical cable too, like the speakers in our Oontz Angle 3 review.
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