The Best Portable Bluetooth Wireless Speakers 2019

The zing to any party is added by pleasing music; it is the soul of the gathering. If pesky wires and bulky equipment has been stopping you from enjoying this aspect of life then you are in for a treat – Wireless speakers are here. The bulky systems of yore have given way too much sleeker and smarter gadgets that are cutting edge. Digital music is in today and no one, and we mean no one must suffer from poor music quality when outdoors. Pair your smartphones, Androids and iPads with some of the best wireless speakers in town and be ready to be transported to a world of breath-taking music and audio.

Wireless speakers often rely on WIFI, NFC, and Bluetooth; practically all current day electronics come embedded with Bluetooth making it the choicest method of wireless connection. The Apple products also have airplay which is limited to the only iOS platform and is not all inclusive like Bluetooth.
Bluetooth is also the safest and the easiest wireless technologies. It does not need any additional wires and cables. You must just ensure that the version of Bluetooth in both the devices meant for pairing is the same or compatible.

Till recently Bluetooth was not the choice for wireless connectivity because of the poor audio quality. is the Bluetooth. But not anymore; the technology has grown by leaps and bounds and comes with the support of the apt-x codec which enhances the overall audio quality. Good quality speakers have the latest version of Bluetooth which can highlight all the notes, instruments and details in the music and vocals. So, whether you use it to listen to music or watch a movie, listen to a podcast or an audiobook you will not be disappointed.
Today, there are several Bluetooth speakers available in the market. The sheer ease of connectivity and the stylish design and variety in sizes make these speakers a hot favorite with travelers and campers.

Things To Consider Before Buying

The key to good listening experience is not just investing in the most expensive unit on sale but also understanding the intricacies of the device and its applicability to your specific requirements. The best Bluetooth speaker for you need not be the most expensive model on the market.
Knowing where you will use the speaker and what kind of music you tend to listen to you can decide on a model that will suit not just your likes but also your budget – there are Bluetooth speakers ranging from $ 20 to several hundred dollars. So, choose wisely. For example, if you plan to use it exclusively for:
Outdoors: Must be loud and need not necessarily focus on the finer nuances of music
Home: good acoustics and stylish appearance and produce more balanced sound since it will be reflected and absorbed by the furniture in the room
Voice assistant: Alexa, Google Assistant or Microsoft Cortana can be an added bonus if you want some additional benefits and are too lazy to do things manually. But this is not a necessity at all.
With that broad concept in mind you can look for the following features:
Good battery life: The best smartphone or the most hi-end musical gadget can do nothing if your speaker dies mid-way thanks to a short-lived battery. Hence, the priority should always be a battery that has a long life and lasts more than just a couple of hours.
Good sound quality: Frequency level and bass quality can be two factors that determine the quality of sound output. Volume, clarity of sound and size will determine the loudness. Look for clear mids, highs, lows and adequate bass.
Durable: Must be able to withstand some falls and shocks. It would be better if it’s shock and dust resistant and able to handle the elements.
Waterproof: You never know when the weather can play truant and it starts to pour; you wouldn’t want your carefully curated playlist to be washed away. Even the accidental slips into the pool or the beach can destroy a music system. Hence, choose a speaker built to “weather the weather”.

Look for IPX number which is a measure of the waterproof capacity. Here is a quick guide:

  • IPXO- not water resistant at all
  • IPX1-protects mildly from drops of water that fall from the top
  • IPX2- protects from drops that fall at an angle, again minimally
  • IPX3-protects from water splashes like at the pool or even in a party when the ice splashes some liquid
  • IPX4 – protection from a splash of water for at least 5 minutes
  • IPX5- protects from a jet of water in any direction for 3 minutes
  • IPX6- protects from powerful water jets from any direction for 3 minutes
  • IPX7- this is completely waterproof up to 3 feet of water and can be submerged for at least 30 minutes
  • IPX8- this goes beyond the three feet.

Hence, ideally, your speaker for outdoor use must have a minimum of IPX 4 rating.

USB Port: Your speaker must be able to charge your smartphone or any other device with the help of an inbuilt USB port. While this is not an essential feature it most certainly is useful.
Pair with other speakers: This feature is very useful outdoors when you want to share your music with others by directly pairing your speaker with their device. It is also useful to share similar speakers within the house to play music in all rooms simultaneously.
Speakerphone: This will allow you to not miss any calls when you are lost in the world of music. This feature is especially useful in conference calls.
Before we proceed to review 15 of the best wireless speakers you must acknowledge the fact that wired speakers are the best and hence do not compare the performance with wired counterparts though it is heartening to notice that several leading brands do provide gadgets that are almost at par with wired speakers.

Our Picks

Sonos One

This is the benchmark for all other wireless speakers for it is the very first brand that ventured into this field and by far the most reliable. You get best of both worlds with this Sonos One – premium sound with the popular Alexa in tow. Clean lines and exquisite performance are the hallmarks of this speaker.

We like

  • The no-nonsense design
  • Stellar sound
  • Adorable Alexa for the company.

Design: Michael Jackson’s famous number comes to mind when we describe the Sonos One, “It doesn’t matter brother if its black or white;” the Sonos One looks cool in both black and white. A perfect amalgam of fabric and plastic this piece though minimalistic in looks is elegant and can blend with the surroundings.

The sleek look is enhanced by the touch-sensitive controls atop the speaker. You can control volume, skip between tracks and move forward by touching on the right left and the center according to what you want to do. There is a mic option that can be muted at will. But most likely you will control everything through the app and with the voice assistant to help you will not fiddle with the app even.

Equipped with six internal microphones the speaker is at your beck and call. Even the biggest of players need support and here these microphones have the capable backing of amplifiers and mid-woofer.

How will you know if Alexa is listening? Just look for the LED which will light up when Alexa is awake; by the way, there are two LED indicators – the other one is for power.

For the best sound quality don’t miss the True play tuning process wherein your speaker will aid your phone to adjust the sound according to its environment. This is limited to iOS platform only.

Performance: The overall sound quality is good and individual instruments can be heard in detail with clarity.

Listening to your favorite music has become a lot simpler due to Alexa; just ask and Alexa shall play. And this is not limited to one speaker but all connected speakers can be controlled from the app.

The Sonos app allows you to stream music from all major streaming services quite effortlessly.

The music itself is balanced and well-rounded with the bass adequate and trebles decent.
You connect wirelessly only on WIFI as it does not support Bluetooth technology which is kind of limiting because you are restricted to using this speaker indoors.

Pros:

  • Equipped with Alexa’s smart home controls
  • Good sound quality

Cons:

  • No Bluetooth support.
  • Does not pair with Sonos Play:1.

Bottom line:

This is one of the simpler wireless speakers from Sonos. Priced at around $ 200 you are rewarded with a speaker that in cahoots with Alexa can enhance your listening experience manifold. The only flaw for us is the lack of Bluetooth connectivity. But it is heartening to know that soon your speaker will also be compatible with Google assistant and even Apple’s air Play 2 sometime this year.

B&W Zeppelin Wireless

Shaped like a rugby ball the B& W Zeppelin wireless speaker is unique in its shape but its audio is exceptionally good and enthralling to hear. The clean design and the thoughtful layout of the tweeters and drivers deliver bring out the finest nuances in all genres beautifully and effortlessly.

We like:

  • Great looks
  • Superb sound quality

Design:

Starting from the elliptical design to the high-grade material used for this speaker everything is unique about it. The fabric covered grill ensures that there is a free flow of air and the device never gets heated up given the fact that the audio is supremely powerful.

Using fine element analysis which determines the vibration of the internal elements the engineers has designed a piece that is just perfect. The placement of the tweeters and drivers within the body in such a manner that they do not affect the sound quality is truly remarkable.

The controls for volume, play/pause are touched sensitive and unobtrusively placed on top while the essential ports for the USB and aux are placed at the bottom.

The well-built chassis is made from glass fiber and strengthened with ABS and the baffle is thicker than its predecessors.

On the whole B& W have worked on revamping the interiors for a more powerful performance while keeping the iconic design in place.

Performance:

The Zeppelin is designed in such a manner that even the trebles are clear and clean without any kind of intervention from the chassis. The tweeters and the drivers work together as one unit to produce the stellar sound that is so fascinating and praiseworthy.

The bass is powerful but is beautifully in control never wavering for even a moment. The vocals and the instruments too are crispy clean and precise.

Another important aspect of this legend is the wireless connectivity. Though it is a little biased to the Apple world overall with the Airplay, the Bluetooth connectivity and Spotify connect embrace the android users too. But it is still not possible to control the speaker with your android phone, unlike an iPhone which can control the volume seamlessly.

The speaker does need a power outlet which is a limiting factor but not a deal breaker.

Pros:

  • Well balanced bass
  • Stellar design
  • Functionally sound

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Android users cannot control the speaker from their phones.

Bottom line:

One of the most expensive speakers on our list the Zeppelin does not let you down. If you are a music aficionado you will delight in the magic of every instrument and vocal note that crosses the threshold of this amazing piece of technology though Android users will want more than that.

Amazon Echo 2nd generation

If you thought you are getting home a speaker, well think again the Amazon Echo is going to transform your entire life and not just how you listen to music. Simple, straight and tubular the Amazon Echo is built to deliver the goods effortlessly and with ease. Depending on third-party apps and constantly adding more to its already impressive lineup the company plans to offer one solution for all your needs in its Amazon Echo 2nd generation. Do not go for the previous version because the latest model is not too expensive and is much better adapted to the current trends.

We Like:

  • The Spartan look
  • Alexa’s helpful presence
  • Easy to use

Design:

Available in five colors, unlike the previous version which was in black and white. the Amazon Echo will fit in seamlessly anywhere you keep it. In this piece you will not be enamored by loads of buttons; you can mute the speaker by just tapping the relevant button. For the rest of the controls just tell Alexa. There is LED lighting around the volume dial which will light up depending on your request.

Now, the not so nice things about this speaker: It is hefty and it needs to be connected to the main at all times. So if you are looking for portability the Echo is not the one you need.
Performance: To begin with you must download the companion app and then onwards the set up is really simple. Once, connected you will not experience any issues in this region; it is really good.

Seven microphones and cutting edge voice technology ensure that Alexa follows your every command. It’s not just music that you can order this speaker to play; you can ask it to read the news, weather report and even book an Uber. Basically, with this set, you will be pampered.

You can voice control only amazon prime music and Spotify whereas the other streaming services don’t enjoy this facility.

The sound quality is reasonable but not exceptional. It lacks in bass depth and the treble rattles in high volume.
Don’t go around looking for the external 3.5mm port because there is none. In fact, the only way you can connect your devices is through Bluetooth. Nope, there is no NFC either in this set.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Sleek looks
  • Helps you control your home and other devices,

Cons:

  • The sound is not consistent always
  • Bass fails at high volumes
  • Takes time to recognize voices
  • Music streaming services currently are few.

Bottom line:

If you want all your orders to be carried out without being questioned, if you want a companion to be at your beck and call, go for the Amazon Echo because it is worth it. If you are a purist or looking for just a speaker then don’t go down this path.

B&O Play Beoplay A1

Rugged looks well complimented by an equally powerful performance, the Beoplay A1 demands attention. It is cute and compact and can be carried with you anywhere you go.

We like:

  • Compact size
  • Powerful audio
  • Portability

Design:

You will fall in love with this delightful looking Beoplay A1; dome-shaped the A1 in its aluminum chassis is a visual treat as well as an aural feast. It has been manufactured to withstand the rigors of normal life so do not worry about the occasional bumps as your device will be safe. It is so small that your palm will suffice but don’t jump when you turn it one for it is akin to a beast with its 360 degrees sound.

The beauty of the piece is thankfully not marred by any ugly control buttons. The piece can be hung anywhere you want with the help of a sturdy leather strap that comes with the gadget. There are touch sensitive controls on the side. You have buttons for power, increasing and decreasing volume; connect button, Bluetooth activation, and microphone on control.

Performance:

You will be surprised that such a tiny speaker can produce audio that is so powerful that it puts many other larger speakers to shame. The bass is exceptionally good even in mid-range. While it does fill any room with volume, should you play a track involving more instruments then the speaker falters as it cannot handle too many frequencies at once.

It excels as a speakerphone too maintaining the clarity of the call despite the din around. And you know what you can activate the voice recognition feature by pressing the microphone button long and if using an iPhone request SIRI to play your choice of music.

For full 24 hours, your device will enthrall you and keep you entertained. And once it reaches its end rev it up with a USB-C charger and not the regular USB micro charger. It requires just 3 hours charging fully.

Pros:

  • Good audio
  • Sturdy built
  • Long battery life
  • Dust and splash resistant.

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Does not have controls for navigation.

Bottom line:

Even though the Beoplay A1 is expensive, it delivers the goods and has the best bass in speakers of its size. You might come across other models with same features at a lesser price but nothing can beat the sound quality and durability of this little guy.

Samsung Radiant 360

Is it possible that we talk about electronics and we miss on Samsung? The Korean giants have come out with yet another product that awes and inspires. The design and sound quality are worth taking note of amidst the more established stalwarts in the industry.

We Like:

  • Design

Design:

The R1 is refreshingly shaped like a vase with a narrow base and a broad top. Looking elegant in black this piece can fit in seamlessly into any décor and even enhance the overall style quotient of the room.
The top panel is flat and has the controls for volume and for navigating between tracks which are intuitive and respond to a gentle touch.
Performance: The radiator ring technology ensures that you listen to exceptional audio irrespective of the placement of the speaker. There is a lot of depth and detail in the audio. Even at high and mid-levels the sound was balanced and the finer nuances evident and not muddy or muffled. And finally, the bass is outstanding.
It can be successfully used as a multiform speaker once it is connected to the home WIFI or Bluetooth. You must download the necessary app to control the speaker when paired with speakers in other rooms. The app gives you access to several online music streaming services.

Pros:

  • Good performer for movies

Cons:

  • Lacks 3.5mm input
  • A few issues with the app controls
  • Connectivity is a problem

Bottom line:

The issues with this set are not major but are nagging and can spoil the experience while the audio is good it is certainly not the best from Samsung. At $200 you must weigh the pros and cons before investing because there are others that are better but priced lower.

Ultimate Ears – MEGABOOM Portable Bluetooth Speaker – Panther

Maintaining the Spartan design so familiar with the UE products, the MEGABOOM belies its looks and produces bass that truly rocks. The MEGABOOM is bigger and more powerful than its predecessors and is here to rock the wireless speaker industry equipped with better battery life and waterproof capabilities.

We like:

  • Sleek elegant look
  • Bass
  • Attractive color options.

Design:

The delightful array of colors and fairly normal weight of the speaker along with the IPX7 are its USP. In fact, the waterproofing is excellent as seen from the rubber gaskets that firmly seal the USB port and another audio port opening.

The top has the controls for power and Bluetooth pairing while the volume increase and decrease buttons are unmissably engraved in large size on the front façade of the speaker.

Performance:

Though the MEGABOOM can be used outside and inside equally effectively, the actual pleasure of listening to it is in the outdoors unhindered by furniture and walls. The 360-degree sound belies the size of the speaker and often people are looking for a bigger speaker when the MEGABOOM performs.
Here is a device that is a match for WIFI in the connection department. Armed the with the best Bluetooth version called Bluetooth Smart, the MEGABOOM allows you to have a seamless connection at all times at par with WIFI.

And when you download the UE app you can remotely control the speaker from anywhere or even pair it with others supporting Bluetooth. Incidentally, it does not support the apt-x codec.
Large bass, greater clarity, and reduced distortion are noticeable almost immediately once you activate the speaker. You will also notice that lower frequencies are toned down to mitigate distortion.
The battery life is an impressive 20 hours. You can use the AC adapter for quick charging.

Pros:

  • Waterproof
  • Long battery life
  • Sleek design.

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Sound can be better.

Bottom line:

The MEGABOOM is a better version of its predecessors and a good performer but $300 is more expensive than most with similar features.

Bose Sound Link Micro

One of the smallest from the family of Bose, The Sound link Micro is really tiny but, in this model, Bose has ensured that the size will not interfere with the quality of sound that it produces. We were pleasantly surprised that Bose managed to pull it off quite effortlessly.

We Like:

  • Compact size
  • Price

Design:

This pocket-sized speaker is available in three colors. The IPX7 certification means even the dunk in the pool will not take the zing away from this midget. The silicon rubber chassis ensures that all the interior components are safe at all times, even a few falls and bumps will not bother them too much.

The gadget comes with its own integrated rubber strap to allow you to hang it to your bag or a bike handle.
All the controls on this gadget are minimal but sufficient. The buttons for power and Bluetooth are on the side flanking the LED lights while the play/pause button and the volume controls are on top. There is a button for navigating tracks also. This button allows you to access the Voice assistant on your phone through the speaker.

Performance: When compared to other mini Bluetooth speakers the Bose Sound link Micro is way ahead. The bass is excellent for its size but it can be inconsistent and very dependent on the tracks played. As with all speakers of diminutive size, there is distortion at high volumes. But one must not overlook the audio separation at mid-volume which is commendable for a speaker of this size.

There is a built-in speaker which maintains the clarity of calls even amidst the din and noise of a party.
Sadly, there is no auxiliary audio input or output from the device. Connectivity is excellent; you can either depend on Bluetooth or use the Bose connect app if connecting to other Bose products.

Pros:

  • Built-in microphone
  • Waterproof
  • Good sound quality.

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Limited battery life.

Bottom line:

Great audio, sleek and compact design and reasonably priced around $100 for the performance, the only bone of contention in this piece is the limited battery life. If you can overlook that fact, go ahead and take your music wherever you go, even into the pool but only for 30 minutes under water.

JBL Pulse 3

How about some music with some lighting effect? JBL Pulse 3 has taken music listening to the next level with its unique design that is endearing and attractive, but mind you there is no compromise on the sound quality – it is not the best but not as poor as one would expect when additional features like lighting are added to a speaker.

We like:

  • Refreshing new design
  • Long battery life
  • Fully waterproof.

Design:

Your friends will be confused when this Java lamp look alike starts reproducing music or podcast from your phone. They will be awestruck by the synchrony between the lights and the music for the gadget will entertain you with a light show once the music begins. You can, in fact, tailor the light sequence using the connect + for a more specific experience.

The transparent plastic shells and the IPX7 rating gives you the freedom to take this piece of art outdoors and enthrall your neighbors as well.
Since the top part is taken by the lights, the bottom consists of the speaker grill and the controls for power, volume adjustment, Bluetooth pairing and JBL Connect+ and one for changing the light patterns.

Performance:

The 360-degree stereo sound means that it really doesn’t matter where you place your prized possession it will still deliver quality sound. You can even connect up to two devices at a time and juggle between them to listen to your favorite music but be ready for the jarring notes at high volume and poor bass in low volume. The sound quality is good but nothing noteworthy.
You can take music listening to an altogether new level when you connect up to 100 JBL connect+ enabled speakers; this is ideal for a large gathering or party with a crowd.

Even with the lights doing their dance the speaker can last 12 hours on one charge thanks to its built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery. But again, the longevity will depend on the music.

The noise and echo canceling speaker ensure that all your calls are clear and there is no distortion of any sort.

You can access Siri or Google assistant with a touch of a button.
Bluetooth 4.2 version powers the connectivity in this device.

Pros:

  • Easy to set up
  • Waterproof and portable
  • Attractive design.

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • Sound quality can be better
  • Issues with battery life

Bottom line:

The JBL Pulse 3 is complete in itself; it has all the necessary elements to please the music lover as well as those who pay attention to looks over quality and performance. At less than $200 it is worth every cent spent on it because the sound quality is outstanding as is the overall design and build. Yes, there are a few issues but none large enough to negate the product altogether.

Sonos Play 5

An elegant box speaker the Sonos Play 5 is simplistic in looks but not in performance. It is one of the best speakers at the higher end of the spectrum. Armed with the latest technology it comes to please and enthrall its audience. It can fit into any décor smoothly and never appear out of place.

We like:

  • Simplistic design
  • Great audio
  • Easy to use.

Design:

From the stalwarts in the industry the Sonos Play 5 does not disappoint. With an emphasis on comfort and looks, the completely revamped speaker now has rounded edges to prevent any accidental bruises and legs not only on the bottom but also the sides so you can keep it in either horizontal or vertical position. The inbuilt sensor will adjust accordingly and you will not notice any difference in the sound quality.

The top has touch controls and not buttons. The main button is aligned with the logo on the front panel. You can play/pause, adjust volume and even change tracks effortlessly.

The mesh frame not only lends elegance to the set but is also useful in dissipating the heat generated during use.

There is a feature called a True play in the set directed at the iOS platform to find the perfect spot for your speaker for the most effective sound. Sadly, this feature is not available for Android users.

Performance:

Though all genres sound good on this system, it is the bass that comes out with flying colors. Even at high volumes, you will not be accosted by the annoying boom. The mids, the highs, the instruments are all clear and crisp. But if you wish to listen to high-resolution music you will be disappointed because currently the Play 5 doesn’t support it; it is unfortunate that such a pricey set lacks this feature.

You can connect it to Alexa enabled device or to Amazon echo for that all-around experience of having your own personal assistant.

You can set up the speaker in no time at all and seamlessly sync it with other speakers on the same WIFI or via Bluetooth. In the paired mode you can either listen to different songs in different rooms or just listen to one song on all of them.

It can be powered only through a power socket and hence not really portable.

Pros:

  • Great design
  • Effortless controls
  • Exceptional sound quality.

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • True play is limited to iOS platform only
  • Lack of high-resolution sound
  • There is a lag when used for videos.

Bottom line:

This is one of the best wireless speakers from Sonos. The Play 5 produces stellar audio and is designed to blend in any décor. The only drawback is that it is limited by needing an AC adapter all the time and for the price range you need to rethink.

Google home max

Google has forayed into the world of music too with the launch of its first ever smart speaker the Google Home Max. To begin with, it is not cheap. Equipped with Google assistant you have your personal concierge to control your speaker but do make sure you are loud and clear.

We like:

  • Presence of Google assistant
  • Exceptionally loud sound
  • Inbuilt Chromecast.

Design:

Despite being a single speaker, the Google Home Max is so designed that it can fill an entire room with powerful sound. Minimalistically designed the Google Home Max is a combination of cloth and plastic. It is available in two colors -chalk and charcoal.

The speaker is huge and weighs almost 11 pounds but its silicone base ensures that the speaker never loses it balance even when tipped occasionally.

There are 6 microphones to make sure that the Google assistant never misses any commands.

The customary tweeters, two of them and the two woofers are safely tucked away behind the fabric mesh.

The top has controls for pause/play and volume; with a gentle swipe, you can manage these controls. They are not the best but are better than their predecessors.

Performance:

The best thing about this speaker is the Google Assistant and its instantaneous response. The voice commands work excellently even at a distant of 6 feet which is truly commendable.

This google speaker is smart; it adjusts the sound according to its position in a room. The smart sound feature is a refreshing change from other models which require you to wave your device in front of the speaker every time you lose connection.

You will enjoy most of the genres on this set with minimal distortion at medium volume. You might miss the low frequencies that other more adept speakers can display but again if you are not an audiophile this should not matter. Having said that if you like clean mid ranges then avoid this Home Max because it fails in this segment.

Another disappointment with this piece is that when paired with another Max for the stereo effect, it fails. And frankly, it is not worth the price of two Maxes, you are better off investing in a more tried and tested model at a lower price with more success at the stereo pairing.

The Bluetooth 4.2 version and the 5 GHz WIFI for all streaming purposes ensures that all the regular file formats are supported.

Pros:

  • Presence of Google assistant
  • Loud sound
  • Clean design
  • Good connectivity.

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Misses out on finer nuances of music
  • The stereo effect when paired not up to the mark.

Bottom line:

This box speaker will not appeal to the true audiophiles but those who just like good quality background music and are looking for a Chromecast dependable multiform experience go for the Home Max. Otherwise, at around $400, it is too expensive and not worth the cost.

JBL boombox

You might get tired of partying but this ruggedly built wireless speaker can go strong for two full days without needing a recharge. It is ideal for outdoors but even indoors you will not miss a beat or hear a tone that is harsh or out of sync.

We Like:

  • The rugged built and the ergonomic handle
  • Large battery life
  • IPX7 rating
  • The sound that is elephantine.

Design:

Available in black and camouflage, the boombox is larger than other speakers that we have reviewed and heavier too; well if you want quality sound you cannot look at smaller models, now can you?
It comes with an ergonomic handle that makes transport easy without muffling the sound because the speaker always faces forward.

A combination of fabric and plastic, have been used to manufacture this speaker and make it rock solid; it can take a beating or two quite effortlessly.
The radiators on either side add the visual relief in an otherwise monotonous design; the mesh grill ensconces the tweeters and the woofers.

The controls have been kept to bare necessities with the buttons for Bluetooth, power and play/pause on top of the speaker. There are no additional buttons to skip tracks which is disappointing. Once the device is paired with your smartphone you can control the volume only on your phone. There is a connect button for pairing with other JBL speakers in the stereo mode.
The aux input and two USB charging port and a micro USB port for firmware upgrade are comfortably ensconced and covered in the back.
It has an IPX7 ratings so don’t panic should it slip into the pool because it is covered.
The built-in microphone can be used to answer calls.
Performance: Loud, monstrous, unbeatable are some adjectives often used to describe the audio from this piece. Even at high volumes, the sound is clear and crisp. You can visually see and feel the bass when you crank up the volume. This is a delight for any outdoor party because even at high volumes the mids and highs stay focused and there is no perceptible distortion in the sound quality.
If you are an audiophile out to experience the finer nuances this piece is not for you; it is meant for large gatherings and parties where the bass is the main component. And if you love your action movies with that additional sound effect plug-in the boombox and we promise you will not regret it.
An impressive battery life of 24 hours makes it a darling for all party and music aficionados. There have been instances though of a buzz when the charge was low; this might need a firmware fix hopefully.

Pros:

  • Awesome sound
  • Rugged built
  • IPX7 rating
  • Ergonomic handle.

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • Heavy
  • No button to change tracks
  • No audio cable included.

Bottom line:

Do you want your dance party to rock and DJ all night, just get the boombox and set the temperature soaring; it is sure to set the dance floor on fire. Not the cheapest at around $ 500, and not the lightest either the JBL boombox is still worth buying for those long unending pool parties because there is no other speaker that comes close to its power and crisp audio even at high volumes.

Bose sound touch 10

Coming from the house of one of the most renowned names in the industry, the Bose Sound Touch 10 is cheap, small and yet effective and carries the zing common to all speakers from this popular brand.

We like:

  • Price
  • Sleek and compact design
  • Good sound quality.

Design: Available in two colors, the Sound touch 10 is austere in design with no fancy frills. The single transducer is covered by a cloth grille while the rest of the frame is made from superior grade plastic. The top panel has the standard controls for volume, power, and Bluetooth. What is interesting is that there are 6 numbers which can be programmed for specific tasks. Store your favorite music streaming apps or radio stations (other than Apple Music Service) on these buttons and then without going to the app you can listen to them. You can access the reset button from the accompanying remote.

Across the front panel are the LED to let you know if the speaker is connected to the WIFI or the Bluetooth?
The back panel has rest of the stuff like a port for the USB cord, aux input.
Performance: Irrespective of the size of the room this Bose product packs a solid punch into its audio which fills the entire room. The bass is correct and so is the mid-range and treble which though can sound harsh for some tracks but not significant enough.

You can pair this piece with Alexa and you can control the speaker completely without raising even a finger. The Alexa is just short of saying your command is my wish.
You can pair a couple of Sound touch 10 speakers to play music in every room of your choice. And should you choose you can play different music in different speakers or the same piece in all the rooms.
The speaker is dependent on 4.2 Bluetooth and WIFI for connectivity. In fact, once connected on WIFI the speaker will be able to control all your smart devices on the same network.

Pros:

  • Great design
  • Easy to use
  • Good sound quality

Cons:

  • Android app is troublesome
  • Connectivity issues.

Bottom line:

Might not be the finest speaker from Bose but it is one of the cheapest under this brand but not overall it is still a tad pricey at $200. Besides the price, the speaker though small in size produces audio that can shame several bigger speakers. The presence of Alexa makes this investment worth it if you can overcome the minor niggles.
13. Bluesound Pulse 2 multiroom wireless speaker

Be ready to loosen the purse strings for here comes one of the most expensive wireless speakers in our section. Priced at around $700, audiophiles will enjoy streaming music on this astounding piece of art.

We like:

  • Simplistic yet classy design
  • Beautiful audio
  • Easy to set up.

Design: Be ready to enjoy some pulsating music from the PULSE 2 which is designed keeping in mind functionality and usability.
Let us start with the controls and their layout. This delightful speaker has dedicated outputs for headphone and optical and analog inputs for digital sounds. You can recharge your devices or power any hard drive using the USB input. And finally, there is WIFI chip for that seamless connectivity that is the USP of this model.
On top are the controls for play and pause, rewind and fast forward and volume control. The IR sensor aids the use of a remote to control the volume.

Performance: The Bluesound was designed for greater sounds- it is time to go beyond MP3 and embrace hi-resolution audio and all forms of digital audio.
Relying on the latest technology in the field the speaker excels in producing all-around stellar sound with no jarring notes. The ARM Cortex microprocessor justifies its presence in the speaker by producing a flawless sound that is truly music to the ears. The energy-conscious will be happy to know that this feature reduces the power consumption also.

You will never need to go beyond the mid volume for that complete experience unless you are using the speaker for a really large area. The bass is crisp and clean without being boomy. The mids and treble do get harsh at high volumes but only negligible and cannot be considered a deal breaker.
Bluetooth with the support of apt-X codec allows you to pair any device to reproduce high-quality audio. You can also connect wirelessly with the help of WIFI.
The App with its user-friendly interface and easy to navigate menu enhances the overall performance of the unit.

Pros:

  • Stellar audio
  • Good connectivity
  • Well laid out controls
  • Deep bass.

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Maybe harsh at high volumes.

Bottom line: A classy yet spartan looking speaker with a performance that belies its looks, the Bluesound is a treasure trove of services waiting to be experienced. Setting the huge price tag aside, there is nothing to complain about. You can stream any music from any app or radio station seamlessly. Pairing it with other Bluesound speakers you can enjoy high fidelity audio like never before.

JLab Block Party

In the multiroom wireless speaker’s segment, the JLAB Block Party is not only worth listening to but also is easy on the pocket. At around $149 it gives a good competition to the other multiroom speakers.

We like:

  • Price
  • Solid built
  • Well laid controls.

No need for any extra app or WIFI to connect to other speakers.

Design: This squarish looking speaker though compact is not lightweight, but this rock-solid piece will never let you down in the audio department.
It is well thought off and well-constructed with a rubber panel on top and rubberized feet on the bottom to keep it in place and also to reduce the vibrations. The top houses individual buttons for play/pause, power, volume adjustment and Bluetooth pairing.
All speakers can be controlled at the same time and individually also; you can use your phone to make changes in all units at once or adjust the settings manually on each unit.
The speaker delivers sound in many modes like indoor, outdoor, block party and house party; you need to just learn to handle the volume buttons to ace this skill. What is a glaring flaw being the lack of buttons to change tracks for which you will have to depend on your phone.
There is no speakerphone; you must answer the calls on your phone.
It is nice for a chance to see a speaker that comes with a proper AC adapter instead of a flimsy USB charger.

Performance:
The bass in this speaker is its most impressive feature. While in the indoor mood it is good but it actually comes to life and so does the high mids and high in the outdoor setting. It thunders in sub-bass music with no distortion even at high volumes. But at no time is the apple cart of balance disturbed, you will get to listen to seamless audio at all times. You won’t miss the individual instruments definition either in the entire gamut of musical details.

By itself, the speaker has a range of 30 feet but in the pairing mode, it reaches an impressive 100 feet away from the main device. You can connect 8 speakers at a time with the main speaker.
The battery life is 9 hours and this too depends on the volume, the mode and the music played.

Pros:

  • Does not require WIFI or an app for room to room sound
  • Connect 8 speakers at a time
  • In the paired mode, the range is 100 feet
  • Great overall audio
  • Compatible with all major musical apps.

Cons:

  • No buttons to change tracks.

Bottom Line: This is one of the more reliable multiroom speakers which produce immersive audio wirelessly. The connect 8 technology ensures that the music plays through the entire house seamlessly. For crystal clear sound at an affordable price try this unit and we promise you won’t regret it.

Libratone TOO Splash Proof Bluetooth

Handy, easy to stuff into a backpack or a handbag the Libratone is an invigoratingly new design that can make itself adorable wherever it goes. Armed with 360-degree sound and a long battery life this splash proof speaker is worth a look.

We like:

  • Sleek and compact look
  • Long battery life
  • Portability.

Design:

Don’t mistake this wireless Bluetooth enabled speaker for a pencil case because that is how it looks – playful, cute and compact in size. But don’t let the size fool you, this Libratone available in 4 attractive colors packs a solid punch in the sound department. This lightweight and portable speaker has a body made from soft-touch plastic and material mesh.

With the small rubber loop at the end, it is easy to pick up through the loop is not large enough to hand around your wrist.

There are just two controls on top; one power button and another large button with the libratone logo doubles up as a play/ pause button and for answering calls. You cannot switch tracks on this promising speaker.
An interesting feature here is the presence of LED on the libratone logo button which displays the battery status; the lights are visible in the dark but not in bright sunlight.
The micro USB port on the side is covered with a rubber cover to prevent dust and water entry.
The speaker is rated IPX4 making it splash resistant and ideal to take it near the pool or the beach but don’t make the mistake of giving it a dip.
Performance: If you love full midrange and crisp trebles the Libratone Too will not disappoint. But if you like loud bass then you won’t like this model which fails in this aspect. The bass is okay in the middle volume range but loses out when the volume is increased.
It is an acoustic delight with its 360-degree sound system which doesn’t compromise on the sound quality or the bass experience no matter how you place it. You can use the App to adjust the audio based on the genre.
You can pair two speakers for an amplified effect.
The inbuilt microphone works as a speakerphone and the call quality is good even from a few feet distance.
The battery lasts almost 12 hours before requiring a charge. Sadly, there is no USB -C for faster charging. You must depend on the regular micro USB for recharging.

Pros:

  • Battery life
  • 360-degree audio
  • Water resistant.

Cons:

  • Can’t skip tracks
  • Does not connect to multiple devices
  • Touch controls not the best.

Bottom line: Clean 360-degree sound and a handy design make the libratone an attractive option in the Bluetooth speaker section. It is not the best speaker and not cheap at around $150 but if you like the sleek and compact design and are not an audiophile you might enjoy having this speaker for a companion.

Best Budget/Cheap Wireless Bluetooth Speakers under $100

You need not always splurge to enjoy good music. There are several models in the budget range that are worth your money and your time. Our criteria as always in narrowing the choice are good battery life and sound quality. Any additional features are a bonus.
UE Roll

The palm-sized saucer-shaped speaker is a delight to own. It is compact, has a good battery life and comes with a bungee cord for easy hanging anywhere.

We like:

  • Compact size and saucer shape
  • Battery life
  • Fully waterproof
  • Available in several colors.

Design:

Take this with you wherever you go, even for a shower, kayaking or under a waterfall and this robust piece will continue enchanting you with audio that is good. The UE Roll is well built, lightweight.
The volume controls are located on top but what is a glaring flaw is the absence of the pause or play button. It lacks a mic but that is not a deal breaker.

The design is completely waterproof with IPX7 making it completely submergible. It will remain unaffected for 30 minutes when submerged fully. What is interesting is that you can actually make it float with an inflatable preserver bought separately from the company website.

Performance: The sound quality is good with clarity maintained even at high volumes. The midrange is pleasant while the vocals are clear. The bass is not the best but is passable. The trouble brews when there are multiple instruments at various frequencies; the speaker is not adept at handling this scenario.
In case you want to amplify the sound, you can use the UE’s free app which allows you to pair with other UE Rolls. While this will accentuate the sound and spread it over a wide distance the sound quality is a bit filtered.
What is commendable about the speaker is its range of 65 feet which is almost double what a normal Bluetooth speaker provides.

The battery life is also fairly decent at about 9 hours of continuous play, though a little more would be nice. The battery needs around 5 and half hours to charge fully. Of course, the actual battery life will depend on the music played.
It can be paired with 8 Bluetooth enabled devices and simultaneously be connected with two sources.

Pros:

  • Great design
  • Good sound quality
  • Portable
  • Waterproof IPX7
  • Can connect to 8 devices simultaneously.

Cons:

  • Speakerphone abilities are not existent
  • Battery life can be better
  • Lack of pause and play button.

Bottom line:

At around $ 83 it is not the cheapest on the circuit and there are others with the same features and equal or better performance. What works for UE Roll is its unique design, sound quality, and portability – take it with you when you are biking, hiking, kayaking or just relaxing.

JBL Flip 3

This rectangular, or cylindrical if you wish, the speaker is economical but packs a punch in its performance. A combination of heavy plastic and fabric this rugged piece will accompany you in many of your adventures or give you company in your kitchen or bathroom and even in the backyard.

We like:

  • Design
  • Sturdy built
  • Long battery life
  • Noise-canceling speakerphone.

Design: The Flip 3 is splash proof wireless Bluetooth speaker that built to take in some beating. So, do not panic if you are caught in the rain, your speaker can handle it; just ensure that you don’t submerge it in water. No, don’t worry the ports are perfectly sealed with a flap to prevent any water droplets from entering.
The tubular design ensures that you can use it horizontally or vertically. It is lightweight and sports a heavy plastic frame that ensconces the fabric mesh to accentuate any sound that comes from it. It is available in 8 attractive colors to suit your personality and mood.

One button plays many roles here; the answer button can be used to skip tracks and even pause and play.
Performance: The stereo sound is powerful and loud while, the bass ample. For the best listening experience stand at around 3 feet away and you cannot miss the power of this compact gadget. You can amplify the sound by connecting multiple JBL speakers by using the JBL connect app that is easily available in play stores and app stores for free. The sound does go off-beat a little when the volume is turned on too high but for a speaker of this size, you cannot expect anything more.
You can connect three devices simultaneously to the speaker and play music from each one for more variety and freedom.

The built-in rechargeable battery runs for 10 hours on one charge before needing its energy again.
The presence of the speakerphone is an advantage as you will never miss any important calls in the midst of all the fun and frolic. The call quality is crisp and clear due to the noise canceling feature present in the speakerphone.
4.1 version of the Bluetooth technology fires up this speaker and gives a range of 33 feet.

Pros:

  • Long battery life
  • Speakerphone present
  • Good quality sound
  • Powerful volume.

Cons:

Higher volume some distortion noticed.

Bottom Line: This inexpensive all-purpose Bluetooth speaker fromJBL charms. It has the right design, powerful sound, rugged exterior for all weather and at around $100 and is worth a try.

Anker sound core 3

If you have really tight purse strings and are a casual listener the Anker Sound 3 should be your choice. It is probably the cheapest in our list at around $35. But to its credit is an excellent battery life, water-resistant design, and loud volume.

We like:

  • Price
  • Battery life
  • Loudness.

Design: A no-frills design this straightforward lightweight Bluetooth speaker is a delight for those who like visible and big control buttons. The rubberized finish and satiny soft touch are nice and comfortable. It is available in three colors.

The control buttons are on top and with them, you can control volume, Bluetooth connectivity, pause and playback modes; the power on/off button is also on top.
There is an auxiliary input for connecting devices that are not Bluetooth enabled. There is a USB port too.
With an IPX5 rating, you can be assured that the rain, wind, snow, and sleet will not affect your little guy too much. Of course, that does not mean that you will let it soak till it cannot breathe anymore.
Performance: Like many speakers of this range the sound quality is best at mid-ranges and worsens as you crank up the volume thanks to the neodymium drivers.

The speaker is ideal for playing background music which you don’t want to be too intrusive and loud. Surprisingly the bass is good due to the Bass Up technology which ensures that even at low frequencies you can hear the beats clearly, but the same cannot be said of the high frequencies which do display some sort of distortion.
The in-built speakerphone allows you to receive calls but the call quality is not the best but will do.
The wireless connectivity using Bluetooth 4.2 version is an impressive 66 feet almost double the normal speakers of this size and capacity.

24 hours of battery life is very impressive and one of the strongest points for this set.

Pros:

  • Long battery life
  • Great connectivity
  • Inexpensive
  • 18-month warranty.

Cons:

  • Speakerphone quality is average
  • Design is simplistic

Bottom line: If you are not a critical music lover you will love the price, the sound quality and the battery life of this product. The simplistic design and decent performance suffice for many individuals who just like having music around without worrying too much about the nuances.

Aukey Eclipse

Ideal for indoors; the Aukey Eclipse has a classic look with the presence of woven fabric in its construction. It has that timeless elegance that endears and charms. This clutch shaped Bluetooth headphone can blend with any environment.

We like:

  • Classic looks
  • Long battery life
  • Quality sound.

Design: This is unlike any of the new modern speakers; the body is of woven fabric. The controls are evenly split; on top, you have the power button, the pause/ play button, volume and track buttons and bass on/off button. While on the bottom you can find the LED indicator, the microphone, and ports for USB and auxiliary cable.
Though sleek in design the Aukey is the not really lightweight; it is, in fact, heavier than most Bluetooth speakers at around 28 ounces. But that makes it a solid piece that can last a long time.
Performance: The 10W drivers ensure that the audio that comes out of their body is commendable and not jarring to the ear. The bass weighty and a delight to bass lovers as the entire room come alive with music. You can hear all the instruments distinctly and with clarity.
The Bluetooth 4.2 ensures that connectivity is seamless and instantaneous with devices supporting this version. The range is a good 33 feet.
With around 12 hours of battery life, this speaker will ensure that you are never embarrassed in front of your friends on a party night as it will slough through unhindered for a long time. It takes 4 hours to charge.
There is an inbuilt microphone for answering calls; you can use the hands-free feature for answering calls.

Pros:

  • Long battery life
  • Great sound quality
  • In-built microphone.

Cons:

  • Not meant for outdoors
  • Can enjoy bass only at high volumes
  • Getting used to the buttons takes a while.

Bottom line: Appearance and durability feature top while assessing the worth of the Auxley. Unlike the plasticky nature of several other speakers in this range, the Auxley is refreshingly traditional and pleasing on the eye. At around $60, the Auxley Eclipse earns its place in the interiors of your house.

Oontz angle 3

Priced just over $35 the Oontz angle 3 is really worth every penny spent on it. Laudable sound quality backed by an efficient speaker the OOntz makes an able companion for homes and for travel.

We like:

  • Sound quality
  • Price
  • Portability
  • Durability
  • Range.

Design: Triangular in shape the Oontz is not only unique looking but is also a good quality speaker. Actually, this design ensures that the drivers and the bass radiators are well separated to produce more clarity in the sound.
It has only the play/pause button and nothing for adjusting volume or changing tracks.
The compact size and lightweight design with no sharp edges make it easy to take it around with you wherever you want by just popping into your bag.

The IPX6 ensures that the occasional splashes of liquid will not affect its quality or longevity.
Performance: Equipped with 14-watt dual precision stereo woofers you can expect nothing but the best sound that can travel far undeterred. Your room and surroundings will come alive with sounds that are clear with mids and highs that are free of distortion of any sort. You can enjoy all genres satisfactorily; you will especially enjoy the bass.

With over 20 hours of playtime, the battery life is the best in the segment.
The inbuilt speakerphone makes it easy to attend calls on your smartphone amidst any party as the music pauses for you to attend to your call before resuming thereby ensuring that you don’t miss out on any important calls. The call quality is exceptionally clear when you are closer to the speaker.

The Bluetooth 4. 2 version ensures that you don’t lose connectivity for up to 100 feet. You can, in fact, connect two of the OOntz wirelessly and play music in two different areas but within the 100 feet radius.
What makes this unit interesting is that you can upgrade it to enhance its performance. This will enable you to use Siri and other voice assistants and also reduce the lag in audio when streaming from videos in other Bluetooth enabled devices.

Pros:
Long battery life
Distortion free all-around music
Long USB cable
Inexpensive.

Cons:

  • Pairing is hard when multiple devices are connected
  • Cannot adjust volume or change tracks on the unit itself.

Bottom line: This is a steal for the quality of sound, exceptional connectivity and range. While the sound quality cannot be compared with the high-end models this set is sufficient for the less discerning listener who likes to hear the bass and the overall good sound.

5 Best outdoor Bluetooth Speakers

Relaxing outdoors in the company of good friends and delicious food is something that everyone looks forward too. What if you can raise the bar and add music that is energizing and adds life to a gathering. While it is not practical to lug around huge speakers every time you go out, there are several wireless options that you can consider. The market is full of such products but if you keep a few basics in mind you won’t end up confused and make a bad choice.

  • Key features of outdoor Bluetooth speakers
  • Must be portable
  • Definitely waterproof and dustproof
  • Well-built and durable to withstand falls and slips
  • Long battery life
  • Connect to multiple devices.

JBL Charge 3

It is one of the few Bluetooth speakers that lets you charge your devices while listening to music. It is a well-rounded speaker that produces great sound, is durable and comes at a very affordable price.

We like:

  • Affordability
  • Sound quality
  • Battery life.

Design: Bulkier than other models in the same range this cylindrical Bluetooth speaker comes in five different colors.
The IPX7 shell ensures that the set is ready for any downpour.
The product comes with a rubberized base to prevent it from slipping even on uneven and wet surfaces.

The controls adorn the top of the gadget with individual buttons for Bluetooth pairing, controlling volume and for play and pause buttons and for power. The play button is used for answering calls and for juggling between tracks. But a glaring omission is the ability to navigate tracks in the backward direction.
The passive radiators vibrate with the bass giving you a visual treat along with the audio feast.
Performance: The overall sound quality is good with the bass holding on even in higher volumes with no distortion; it is not the most powerful but it is significant enough to be noticed. The vocals are clear and well defined and the mids rich. The sound is never unnaturally enhanced. You can play any genre and you won’t be disappointed.
You can connect with 3 devices wirelessly at a time.
The inbuilt speakerphone with the noise cancellation feature enhances the call quality and maintains clarity in the speech.
The battery has an impressive 20 hours life.

Pros:

  • Great audio quality with powerful bass
  • Waterproof
  • Speakerphone present.

Cons:

  • Heavy
  • Backward track change not possible
  • Exposed woofers.

Bottom line: Ideal for outdoor use, the JBL charge 3 is durable, with good audio quality. Priced at around $120 it is reasonable. This compact speaker with the solid bass can be an alternative to more expensive models with the same features. It is value for money.

Sony SRS-XB3

Water resistant and portable the Sony SRS- XB3 can blend with any décor and will feel as much at home in your kitchen, by the pool or in your living room. Extra bass and the DSP technology will not disappoint in the sound section.

We like:

  • The price
  • The bass
  • Simplistic design
  • The layout of controls.

Design:

Available in three different colors this sleek, no-frills Bluetooth speaker is a delight to possess. Rectangular in shape it is ably crafted with a rubberized panel that the device doesn’t slip.
The top of the speaker enables you to control the NFC pairing (yes you get to choose between Bluetooth and NFC in this set) with a designated button. There are dedicated buttons for power, playback, Bluetooth and speakerphone.

What is disappointing in an otherwise promising set is the lack of buttons to forward or rewind the track; you must depend on the source for doing that.

The back panel has ports for the USB charger and aux cable along with a reset button. These openings are present in an enclosed area to prevent entry of dust and water.

Sadly, the system is only water resistant and not waterproof with an IPX5 rating. So, while it can handle the occasional splash do not expose it to rain or dunk it in a pool.

Performance:
This speaker will appeal to all those bass lovers given the fact that there is provision for stepping up the bass with the extra bass mode. But even without turning on this mode the bass is significant and enjoyable. While there is no distortion even in the highest volume in the regular mode one can hear the jarring in the extra bass mode.

You can enjoy music or audio from your speaker for two full days or 24 hours even with the Bluetooth turned on. That is truly impressive and worth considering.

The built-in microphone allows you to answer calls with ease.

Pros:

  • Stellar audio
  • Portable
  • Speakerphone present
  • Impressive battery life.

Cons:

  • No playback button
  • Cannot navigate the track.

Bottom line:

Just shell out $150 to enjoy outstanding audio from a gadget that is so lightweight that you won’t feel it. In addition to that, the water-resistant nature makes it ideal for all your outdoor adventures.

Soundcast VG5

The Soundcast VG5 is the perfect outdoor speaker complete with water resistant and dust resistant features. This solid piece of technology is rugged and does the job. But if you are purist stay away because you will be sorely disappointed.

We like:

  • Roaring sound
  • Meant for outdoors
  • Solid construction
  • Exceptional bass.

Design: The VG5 inspires awe in the user because it stands tall, literally, amongst the midget sized Bluetooth speakers; it is a good 17 inches tall and weighs almost 11 pounds. Solid construction with water resistant features, the Soundcast comes adequately rubberized to prevent any mishaps.
It has an IP64 rating which means that it is resistant to dust and water but it cannot be submerged or drenched. It would have been better if it was fully waterproof for the price.

The unit comes with touch controls on the top. You have controls for Bluetooth pairing, NFC activation, play/pause and volume up/down; you have no controls to change tracks or rewind and fast forward. The disappointment doesn’t end here, for a unit of this size and price, there is no speakerphone present. One saving grace is that it comes with a child lock; by holding the mute control down for three seconds you can activate this feature. You can also program it to auto lock.

The outlet for the AC adapter, USB port and the port for the aux cable are housed in the bottom panel of the gadget. What is interesting is that the manufactures provide you with five AC adapters to be used anywhere in the world.

Performance: The sound quality is the highlight of this piece; it comes with the sheer brute power given the fact there are neodymium drivers in the speaker ably supported by the 6-inch woofer. The speaker is well designed to allow air movement at the bottom and keep the drivers working efficiently.

Wired or non-wired the speaker is crafted to ensure that you enjoy bass like never before. The bass is thunderous to state mildly at both high and mid volumes with no distortion at all and should you happen to play indoors you can listen to the music of rattling doors and windows.
Even the other instruments and vocals are crisp and rich; the mids and highs are solid especially on tracks that are low on bass. You can enjoy popular music but if you are looking to play orchestral music this piece is not for you.

The Bluetooth 4.2 technology is supported by codes aptX and AAC for enhanced sound quality. You can even pair two of these speakers for a stereo effect.

The battery lasts for 10 hours and needs 5 hours for a complete charge.

Pros:

  • Huge bass
  • Powerful audio
  • Easy to access controls
  • Water and dust resistant.

Cons:

  • Navigation controls absent
  • No speakerphone
  • Not waterproof.

Bottom line: For outdoor parties replete with din and noise you need a speaker that can be heard loud and clear. The Soundcast VG5 must find a place in your paraphernalia for its thunderous audio. While it is spot on for popular music it falls short of traditional and orchestral music. So, choose wisely for it’s not cheap at $ 499 and is one of the more expensive models on our list.

Bose sound link revolve +

This tubular portable wireless speaker from Bose provides 360-degree omnidirectional sound just like several other speakers of this nature. The advantage of this design is that you can place your speaker anywhere but this will not affect the sound. At $269 it is not cheap but then it is worth the price.

We like

  • The lantern shaped design
  • The tripod at the bottom
  • The sound quality
  • Battery life.

Design: It is reminiscent of good old days when you used to carry the lantern to lead the way, now with the Bose Revolve + you can share your music as you carry it along and walk on the shores of beaches. The lantern design seems a deliberate ploy by Bose to not only make it attractive and unique but also convenient to carry around as you walk along.

The gadget is lightweight and well-built with its aluminum casing ensconcing all the important components that make the speaker such a powerful entity. It is available in two colors.

We find it a tad disappointing that a speaker of this range comes only with IPX4 which makes it only water resistant and not waterproof but again if you have it well covered this is not a deal breaker.

It is shock absorbent and can take a few bumps which don’t mean that lost in the thumping of bass you take it and pelt it down!

And if you are tired of carrying it around just attach it to a wall or place it down on its tripod mount, which we feel is a nice touch.

What makes this piece so impressive is the patented acoustic deflector ideally positioned downwards in combination with an equally effective transducer and opposite radiators to produce a sound that is just amazing.

The controls are all on top with individual buttons for power, volume, Bluetooth and a multifunction button for playback and activating the voice control on your smartphone.
The USB port and the port for aux cable are located on the bottom. You can charge the device on a charging dock too which must be bought separately and is not included in the set.

What is a little disappointing at this stage is the absence of USB -C for faster charging.

Performance: Even compressed music, which is often relayed on streaming services, sounds good on this set. The tonal balance is right and the sound delightful. The bass is good and all round and has a better impact than most in this range.

The battery is impressive at 16 hours through the time will change based on the music and the volume you hear.

The inbuilt microphone makes sure that the device can be used as a speakerphone too.

Downloading the Bose connect app you can connect other Bose speakers wirelessly for more amplified sound. The NFC technology can also be used for a seamless streaming experience.

Pros:

  • Sleek design
  • Built-in handle for easy transport
  • Battery life is impressive
  • Speakerphone present.

Cons

  • Expensive for size
  • Charging port sold separately.

Bottom line: Yes, the Revolve + is on the expensive side but then it provides you with audio that is good, loud and bass that has the right balance. The convenience of carrying this gadget anywhere and listening to music at par with the best speakers is definitely worth paying the price.

Ultimate Ears Blast Smart Waterproof Speaker

The name says it all; this UE blast smart speaker is built to enchant. This waterproof and dustproof speaker is ideal for all your outdoor rendezvous. It is a complete package; it has WIFI connectivity and has the amazing Alexa support besides the usual great bass and sound quality.

We like

  • Waterproof and dustproof feature
  • Omnidirectional sound
  • Amazing bass.

Design: This tubular hand-held speaker has clean lines and soft fabric mesh. The controls are spread out. The top has the power and pairing button while the volume button is right in front. A glaring flaw is the absence of a playback button necessitating the need for Alexa to step in or use your handphone.

It is not really lightweight but where you want solid power you cannot expect it to be flimsy and fragile.

The USB charging port is on the underside of the device but it is inconvenient to use it because it is covered by a screwed plate that needs to be unscrewed every time you want to charge. Probably the idea is to push the user to invest in a $40 charging dock which makes the process easy and no need to unscrew; though at the price the device is being sold they should have included the dock in the package.

The IP67 means that the device can defend itself from the onslaught of dust and water. So, should you be at the beach, be rest assured your device is covered.

Available in four attractive colors, our personal favorite is the merlot which kind of brightens up the atmosphere and stands out among a crowd.

The Alexa is the highlight in this piece. While the Amazon users revel in this feature those using other major music streaming services are not happy because they have to depend on Bluetooth for connectivity and the voice command is of no use to them. Even to use the Alexa you must be connected to WIFI.

Performance: Let’s start with the bone of contention the Voice support Alexa. While within the confines of a room the device is good at picking up and following voice commands, in a crowded atmosphere and even outdoors it falls short significantly.

Moving on to the music quality you won’t be disappointed because this device does pack enough punch into its bass. The overall tonal balance is just nice and pleasant. But with higher volume, the bass sounds harsh.

The Bluetooth provides an impressive 150 feet range while on the WIFI you can reach 330 feet.

12 hours of blast time speaks volumes about the battery capacity.

Pros:

  • Long battery life
  • Amazon Alexa compatible
  • Sleek design.

Cons

  • Does not support apple music and google play music
  • Speakers can’t be linked
  • Difficult to access the USB port.

Bottom line: The blast is a great portable wireless speaker with exceptional sound quality. It is, in fact, the best Alexa enabled speaker in the wireless segment. It is a pity that it cannot support at this point in time all major music streaming sources which make it an expensive buy.