This content originally appeared on Mashable for a US audience and has been adapted for a UK audience.
Take a moment to imagine the perfect vacation photo: relaxing in a scenic location, the sun shining and a cold drink in your hand. Yes, nice picture. But what about the sounds? The only thing that could make this image even more perfect would be an excellent speaker next to you blasting your favorite tunes.
When choosing a speaker for this scene, there are a few features you’ll want to prioritize. Choosing a wireless speaker—one that doesn’t tangle you up in power cords and can easily connect to your phone via WiFi or Bluetooth—will make things easier, which is why you should consider wireless for outdoor use only.
Wireless technology isn’t the only feature you need in an outdoor speaker. Also important for outdoor use is some type of weatherproofing or waterproofing. There are other things to consider, so here’s a guide to everything you need to know.
Do you need a wireless outdoor speaker?
With today’s WiFi and Bluetooth technology, there’s no need to deal with complicated installations and worry about safely burying cables outside in all the wet and windy elements. You’re better off with a Bluetooth speaker that easily connects to your devices—smartphone, tablet, laptop, whatever—and seamlessly streams your tunes. Another advantage is that you can often link several of them together via Bluetooth to provide full audio coverage in your outdoor space. You can also use this technology to synchronize the audio playing indoors and outdoors to keep the atmosphere of your party constant.
What are the important features of wireless outdoor speakers?
We’ve reviewed a wide range of wireless outdoor speakers and come up with a short list of things you should be interested in. Here are some things to keep in mind:
Battery life — The main disadvantage of wireless speakers is that they need to be charged periodically. Make sure the external speaker you choose has decent battery life if you plan to use it often and don’t want to think about recharging too much. 10-12 hours is average.
Endurance — This may seem obvious, but you need your outdoor speaker to be durable. If it isn’t, then it won’t last very long. Any external speaker will probably take a few hits and can even be dropped. So the last thing you need is something that breaks easily.
Sound quality — As with any speaker purchase, you’ll want to prioritize sound quality. What’s the point if your speaker doesn’t play your tunes better than your phone? So make sure you choose something with bass, clear sound and good volume.
Waterproofing — We’ve just mentioned how important waterproofing is, but you should also look for the next step in protection. If you plan to use your speaker near a pool, lake, or sea, you should get one that can be submerged in water. Accidents happen and it’s best to play it safe with a waterproof speaker.
Resistance to atmospheric influences “Of course, nothing is indestructible in the elements, but you’ll need something that can last at least for a little while, regardless of the weather conditions that are common near you.” This is where a speaker that is water or heat resistant can come in handy.
Keep these points in mind when shopping for your next speaker.
What is the best wireless outdoor speaker?
Once you know what’s most important to you and what you should be looking for in an outdoor speaker, you can actually choose your preferred device. This is not the easiest task because there are many options that fit many fields.
To make things easier for you, we’ve rounded up a selection of the best wireless outdoor speakers, including popular models from top brands like JBL and Ultimate Ears. We’ve searched high and low to bring you this list, and we’re confident there’s something for everyone and every budget.
These are the best wireless outdoor speakers in 2023.