Navigating the world of consumer electronics can be a bit maddening.
With new companies seemingly popping up overnight, it can be hard to figure out which are legit and which are scams. And when it comes to finding the right wireless speaker to fit your outdoor needs, the consequences of buying a subpar product are obvious and immediate — poor sound, limited utility and shoddy durability.
Lucky for you, we have a few suggestions to help you find the perfect speaker to fit your outdoor and action sports needs.
SCOSCHE, BoomBOTTLE H2O ($109)
If there’s one thing to be learned from today’s wireless speakers, it’s that big things come in small packages. And with that in mind, The BoomBottle H2O performs admirably for a capsule the size of a beer can.
While I couldn't feel my internal organs rearranging (someday!), lower registers thumped without drowning the highs or muddying the mids.
Amplification is plenty, whether you want to lounge lakeside with your posse after a hike (it's waterproof and it floats) or crank out some extra motivation on a bike ride (it slides right into the water-bottle cage on your frame).
Plus, with 11 hours of battery life, this speaker will crank until the very end of your epic workout.
— Kim Stravers
BRAVEN, BRV-X ($199)
The Braven BRV-X is the perfect wireless speaker for someone who never sits still. It's small size and light weight make it easy to bring from room to room, while still being able to produce quality sound.
When taken down to the beach on a warm and crowded day, the sweet sounds playing out of the BRV-X were drowning other beachgoers. It was like being at home. Aww, privacy.
Plus, the fact that it's waterproof removes all fear about getting it wet on pool days. Or having your 9-month-old daughter drop it in the bathtub, while listening to Pandora's Toddler station.
If you're looking for an inexpensive wireless speaker that doesn't sacrifice sound quality for simplicity, the Braven BRV-X is a great option.
— Aaron Carrera
Hercules, WAE OUTDOOR 04PLUS ($69)
As wireless speakers have gotten more and more impressive with their performance, they’ve tended to sacrifice true portability in the way of better sound. Now, finding a wireless speaker that is truly portable, actually performs well, and isn’t insanely expensive seems impossible. The Hercules WAE Outdoor 04Plus is the exception to that issue.
Weighing in at a mere 9 ounces and measuring 6 inches x 2 inches x 2 inches, the Outdoor 04Plus is by far and away the most portable wireless speaker we tested. Plus, despite its small size, the Outdoor 04Plus is completely dust-resistant, shockproof and waterproof, making it ideal to screw onto your bike and take it down the trail without worrying about it getting in the way.
While the sound that comes out of the Outdoor 04Plus isn’t exactly booming it is balanced, and you won’t ever feel like the music coming out of it is distorted. And even with its small size, the Outdoor 04Plus manages to pack a charge that lasts more than 10 hours.
Plus, retailing at a mere $69, the Outdoor 04Plus is easily the most affordable speaker we tested. While it might seem odd to talk about a review in terms of something breaking (and while the speaker proved more than durable in testing) there’s certainly something to be said for breaking a $70 speaker while biking versus a $300 speaker.
— Robert Pursell
FUGOO, SPORT XL ($299)
The Fugoo Sport XL speaker really puts the "boom" in boombox.
I'm a serious Spotify junkie who had conceded to believe that my iPhone speaker was simply going to have to do … until the Fugoo Sport XL speaker came into my life. Thanks to the Bluetooth connection that very easily connects to my iPhone, the speaker turns things up about 50 notches (literally). The sound quality is amazing.
I took it camping and was amazed by how durable it was, plus the volume allowed for our site to really be enveloped with great music. With the 36-hour battery life, it survived the weekend on just one charge.
— Amanda Reid
Ultimate Ears, UE Boom 2 ($199)
The UE Boom 2 comes in a small package but packs a big punch. It's surprisingly light for the amount of sound that comes out and the sound that does come out, is crystal clear.
The 360-degree design ensures sound will be blasted in all directions, making it perfect for parties, the beach, the park or pretty much anywhere.
It's also portable and has a clip-in hook that you can latch on to your backpack, car roof, or anywhere you can think of so you can always be around your tunes.
The dummy-proof sound adjusting buttons make it extremely easy to turn up the sound.
The UE Boom 2 is waterproof, so it's perfect to take for the outdoors. If the weather changes, no need to worry about the speaker!
<em— Ellen Wright
ECOXGEAR, ECOSTONE ($149)
ECOXGEAR’s ECOSTONE speaker is more than a speaker.
Measuring 5 inches x 10.1 inches x 3.7 inches and weighing 3.5 lbs, the ECOSTONE is the perfect travel companion especially in rough situations.
The bluetooth-compatible speaker packs a surprisingly loud sound for its size and syncs perfectly with any cellphone. It’s 12-hour battery life also doubles as an extra charge for your phone, camera or anything else you want to plug in making it perfect for camping or long remote trips.
Plus, the little guy floats and is completely waterproof. The ECOSTONE is U.S. military certified and tested against the elements making it one rugged little speaker.
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