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Best waterproof speakers of 2022

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The best waterproof speakers composited
Stan Horaczek




Best overall JBL Flip 6 is the best overall waterproof speaker. JBL Flip 6










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A great midrange speaker with solid sound, portability, and full protection from the elements.

Best indoor/outdoor Sonos Move is the best indoor/outdoor waterproof speaker. Sonos Move










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An indoor/outdoor speaker with excellent sound that you can expand into a full system.

Best portable UE Wonderboom 2 is the best portable waterproof speaker. UE Wonderboom 2










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If you’re heading toward the beach or lounging poolside, this is the speaker you want by your side.


The best waterproof speakers will be able to pump out your favorite music any time, anywhere. If you want to rock out in, near, or under the water, a great waterproof speaker will withstand wetness while checking several of the boxes that we’d apply to any speaker. You don’t need to make any sacrifices for sound quality, nor should you have to bend on battery life, portability, and connectivity. We’re here to help you find the best waterproof speaker for your lifestyle, whether you’re looking to blast Anderson .Paak’s “Malibu” at a pool party or sit in your feels during a Phoebe Bridgers shower session. 

How we chose the best waterproof speakers

We selected our favorite waterproof speakers by considering our own experiences and other user impressions and then combined those with extensive research on top-performing models. We looked at IP rating and other specs—like frequency response and maximum sound pressure level—to ensure durability and sound quality. From there, we considered battery life, Bluetooth range, and special features to select the best of the best from a fairly dense pool. 

What to consider when buying a waterproof speaker

IP rating 

The most important thing to check before purchasing a waterproof speaker is its IP rating. IP stands for “Ingress Protection,” which tells you just how fortified an electronic device is against dirt, dust, and water. The first digit describes particle protection (dust or sand), the second liquid. For example, if a speaker has a rating of IP57, the “5” indicates it can keep out most dust and dirt particles. The “7” means you can submerge the device in up to 1 meter of water for 30 minutes before any damage occurs. If you see a rating that looks like IPX7, the “X” means no data is available for that substance. 

Only speakers with an IPX7 rating or higher can actually claim full waterproof status, though we have made an exception and recommended one stellar IP56 speaker. For full submersion or in-shower use, stick with IPX7 and above; however, an IPX6 can withstand a strong stream of water for a short time, about 100 liters per minute, suitable for rain, strong splashes, and more. IPX5 can handle 12.5 liters of water per minute, more like a squirt gun. IPX5 is technically water-resistant, and we don’t recommend trying out anything less if you’re on the search for a waterproof speaker. 

Battery life

If you’re shopping for a waterproof speaker, chances are you’re preparing to take it on the go, which means you need a model with a long-lasting battery. Make sure you check out the specs and look for a model that can last between 10 and 20 hours, so you don’t have to pause an outdoor adventure to charge your speaker inside. Generally speaking, larger speakers house longer-lasting batteries, but that’s not always the case. You should also note that most speakers drain their battery faster when playing music at loud volumes. So, if you know you’re about to host an all-day pool party, invest in something long-lasting because that speaker with 10 hours of battery might just drop to 5. 

We should also note that while some speakers can still play music while they charge, you shouldn’t charge your speaker near the water. If it gets wet or falls, that open charging port and live connection will likely lead to speaker destruction and/or a nasty shock. 

Sound quality 

While it’s true that portable speakers can have trouble with handling subbass and high-volume demands, there are a few models out there that are a cut above the rest.

Larger units are generally more equipped to maintain consistent audio even as you turn the volume up, plus they have more room for well-designed subwoofers. A speaker with more active woofers, or even passive “bass radiators,” will do a much better job navigating the rumble in the sonic roads (if you want to know about the physical components of a speaker, check out our primer). As for volume, check out the speaker’s specs and look for a maximum sound pressure level, notated in decibels (dB). Note, however, 100 dB is the loudest you’ll ever really want to go, and only really in an open space for limited periods; it’s akin to listening to a lawnmower at close range and can eventually cause hearing damage. We are satisfied with Bluetooth speakers that maintain good sound quality between 85 dB to 95 dB for larger gatherings. 

You can also look at the frequency response range, measured in hertz (Hz) and kilohertz (kHz), letting you know the range of frequencies (lows, mids, and highs) the speaker will support. You will commonly see a 20 Hz – 20 kHz range, which is the limit of human hearing for both highs and lows. Just because a speaker lists this range on its specs doesn’t necessarily mean it can reproduce without any dips or shortcomings across the frequency spectrum, however. If you want to do more research before buying, look for a frequency response graph for the speaker in question, often created with audio testing by a third party. Keep in mind that it’s difficult for a portable Bluetooth speaker to support frequencies lower than 40 Hz to 50 Hz accurately without a dedicated subwoofer. Many models utilize enhanced digital signal processing technology to compensate for the lack of low-end, but when it comes to small speakers, sometimes we must accept its limitations—swapping subbass for waterproof protection and portability might be an even trade. 

Connectivity and codecs 

As Bluetooth technology continues to develop, you have more control than ever over which enhancements you’ll rely on. Common iterations are 4.2, 5.0, 5.1, 5.2, and 5.3 (announced in July 2021). Newer versions typically have higher data transfer speeds, maintain connection across greater distances, and reduce power consumption. Bluetooth can even pair two or more compatible units together for stereo sound and increased volume. 

Diving even deeper, Bluetooth codecs describe how your digital audio data is encoded and decoded from a source device to your speaker or headphones. To get the most from these high-speed transfers, both your receiver and transmitter must be equipped with the same codecs. The most common codec to see is SBC, which every Bluetooth speaker supports. While not the highest-quality codec, it’s a virtually universal, reliable way to transfer data. If you’re an iOS user looking for higher quality, consider a speaker supporting AAC, or Advanced Audio Coding. If you have an Android smart device, select a speaker with aptX/aptX HD/aptX Adaptive (or LDAC) to assure support for higher transfer rates that preserve more data. 

Special features 

Additional features come in all shapes and sizes, with some of the most popular related to connectivity and controls. Consider which might be the most beneficial for you: Wi-Fi-equipped speakers, like the Sonos Move and Roam, can pair waterproof speakers with a high-speed home network for high-fidelity audio or voice-activated commands. Voice assistant compatibility means you can control your music with Siri, Alexa, or Google Assistant. Some speakers, like the Tribit StormBox Micro 2, double as a power bank to charge your phone on the go, and many models come with specially designed apps to control your sound with graphic equalization, listening modes, and more. 

The best waterproof speakers: Reviews & Recommendations

Best overall: JBL Flip 6 

Erin Behan

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Why it made the cut: The JBL Flip 6 is a compact waterproof party speaker that sounds and looks great on the go or at home. 

Specs 

  • Battery Life: 12 hours 
  • Bluetooth Range: approx 130 feet 
  • IP Rating: IP67

Pros 

  • PartyBoost technology 
  • Bluetooth 5.1
  • GraphicEQ

Cons 

  • No aux input 
  • Battery life is just okay 

The JBL Flip 6 (which our reviewer loved) is a great portable Bluetooth speaker for any listening experience, dry or wet. With a durable build, rubberized onboard controls, and an IP67, this model is protected from more than just water; it’s protected against dust and drops, so you can feel confident taking it on any outdoor adventure. The Flip 6 has dual passive radiators, a separate tweeter, a purported frequency response range of 63 Hz – 20 kHz, and a max volume of around 87 dB, so you’ll be satisfied with the overall sound quality. Plus, you can customize your audio using the graphic EQ on the JBL Portable app, available for both iOS and Android systems. This app also lets you connect your Flip 6 to another compatible JBL speaker with PartyBoost mode, increasing volume, creating a stereo pair, and widening coverage during larger gatherings. This model can only connect wirelessly via Bluetooth 5.1, however; it doesn’t have an aux, USB, or any other wired input. It does feature a USB-C quick charging port, which will come in handy if you like to listen at loud volumes because while the Flip 6 has up to 12 hours of battery life, that number can diminish if you’re blasting music. 

Need an even bigger bump in battery and listening levels? There’s the equally IP67 Charge 5, or any number of other JBL party speakers to choose from.

Best portable: UE Wonderboom 2

Ultimate Ears

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Why it made the cut: The UE Wonderboom 2 has continued to top our charts when it comes to portable, affordable, waterproof sound. 

Specs 

  • Battery Life: 13 hours 
  • Bluetooth Range: 100 feet 
  • IP Rating: IP67

Pros 

  • Durability 
  • Volume 
  • Portability 

Cons 

  • Bass is a bit lacking
  • No microphone 

The Wonderboom 2 is one of our favorite shower speakers, and one of our favorite small speakers in general—a model we return to again and again when it’s time to recommend portable, waterproof audio. With its 360-degree sound coverage, a 75 Hz – 20 kHz frequency response, and volume that reaches up to 87 dB, the Wonderboom 2 allows you to hear the music over the sound of crashing waves, a high-pressure showerhead, or poolside splashing. It has an IP67 rating, which means it is waterproof and dust resistant, so you can take it with you just about anywhere you go. Onboard controls will let you play, pause, and skip tracks without touching your phone, plus it’s buoyant, so you can plunge it in the pool or plop it in the bathtub alongside your rubber ducks, aka your backup singers. This speaker weighs less than 1 pound and measures 4 by 3.7 inches with a flexible, looped handle so you can strap the speaker to a bike, bag, or belt loop for maximum portability. If you’re looking for a waterproof speaker that you can easily transport from the beach to the bath, the Wonderboom 2 (one of several excellent Ultimate Ears party speakers) is a great option. 

Best indoor/outdoor: Sonos Move

Stan Horaczek

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Why it made the cut: The Sonos Move is a great speaker for mixed-use listening; it’s part of an expandable network that sounds excellent at home and transitions well for outdoor listening. 

Specs 

  • Battery Life: 11 hours 
  • Bluetooth Range: 300 feet 
  • IP Rating: IP56

Pros 

  • Voice Assistant
  • Sound quality 
  • Bluetooth range
  • Expandable

Cons 

  • Pricey
  • Does not natively support Siri

The Sonos Move has an IP56 rating, as opposed to an IPX7 rating, which means that it’s not fully submersible but is protected from high-pressure water jets spraying in any direction. This essentially means it can withstand rain, steam, splashes, and the accidental dunk here or there. We still consider the Move “waterproof” and while you don’t want to leave it floating in the pool, you will be able to access impressive sound quality anywhere you go. It’s particularly great for those who want to purchase one outstanding speaker rather than separate indoor/outdoor models that may save money but not sound as solid. This speaker—easily transportable via its built-in handle—boasts two Class-D digital amplifiers, a downward-firing tweeter to take care of high frequencies, and a mid-woofer to carry midrange frequencies with low-end support. Plus, you can customize your sound using the Sonos app’s adjustable EQ, though Automatic Trueplay helps you avoid much tweaking by adjusting equalization based on the listening environment and content. Connect to the Move via Bluetooth 5.0, AirPlay 2, or Wi-Fi, which, when used, will let you stream higher-quality, well-balanced audio and pair with other Sonos speakers to create a more robust stereo and/or multiroom sound system. Wi-Fi also enables you to access voice assistants like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. If you love the richly musical Sonos sound but want something compact that you can submerge, check out the Sonos Roam, the Move’s little brother with an IP67 rating. 

Best premium shower speaker: Bang & Olufsen Beosound A1 (2nd Gen)

Bang & Olufsen

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Why it made the cut: The Beosound A1 is a well-constructed, portable, waterproof speaker from high-end brand Bang & Olufsen. It’s sleek and compact with a looped handle, perfect for hanging on a showerhead or resting atop a caddy. 

Specs 

  • Battery Life: 18 hours 
  • Bluetooth Range: up to 800 feet 
  • IP Rating: IP67

Pros 

  • Sound quality 
  • Bluetooth Range
  • Battery Life
  • Looped carrying strap

Cons 

  • Volume is a bit limited

While just about any of these speakers could support shower karaoke, the Beosound A1 (2nd Gen) has impeccable features and superb design; it measures approximately 5 x 5 inches with a flat bottom and features a looped candle so it can safely rest on a soap dish or hang from your showerhead. Bang & Olufsen produces high-end audiophile favorites, so while this speaker is pricey, you’re guaranteed to get great sound from your purchase. When tested, the 360-degree driver and aptX Adaptive codec produce a wide soundstage and improved performance with an accurate frequency response between 63 Hz and 13.5 kHz. Audio is adjustable using the Beosonic app’s sound customization feature and five EQ presets. Three omnidirectional microphones increase the clarity of phone calls, if you’re inclined to conference rather than just have a solo relaxation session. At the same time, built-in voice and onboard controls mean you can play, pause, skip, and more without reaching a sudsy hand out for your definitely not-waterproof phone. 

If a compact speaker sounds like everything you need, but the Beosund’s price is prohibitive, check out the JBL Clip 4

Best budget: Tribit StormBox Micro 2

Carsen Joenk

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Why it made the cut: Doubling as a portable charger, this compact speaker is a budget-friendly way to listen to your favorite tunes wherever the water takes you. 

Specs 

  • Battery Life: 12 hours 
  • Bluetooth Range: up to 120 feet 
  • IP Rating: IP67

Pros 

  • Price
  • Bluetooth 5.3
  • Powerbank
  • Integrated strap

Cons 

  • Some distortion at loud volumes 
  • Limited onboard controls 

The Tribit StormBox Micro 2 is a super-compact second-generation model that delivers solid sound at an affordable price. Similar in size and design to its predecessor, this speaker measures roughly 4 x 4 inches with a rubberized, grippy bottom and durable, textured grill. Currently available only in black, this speaker is pretty sleek and discrete. The power and pairing buttons are integrated onto the front-facing side along with five tiny LED battery life indicators. Three streamlined control buttons top the speaker, and the multifunction circle allows you to play, pause, skip, go back; access Siri or Google Assistant; as well as answer, reject, and switch calls. The plus and minus buttons raise and lower volume.  

Released in February 2022, this new and improved model is ready to roam with you. The integrated strap is also made of rubber with just enough stretch to fit around bulkier straps, handles, and more. It takes about two seconds to clip onto a backpack or bike handle and won’t accidentally fall off when jostled. With an IP67 rating, it’s ready for just about any terrain you might be traversing, withstanding dust and liquids. The battery can last up to 12 hours, so you can stay connected all day or night; plus, the SmartID USB-C port used to recharge the StormBox Micro 2 can also charge your phone, tablet, or other small accessories. It’s a great speaker to bring on a short camping trip, long hike, day at the beach, or rafting adventure. 

Primed to use right out of the box, you can quickly pair to your smart device using Bluetooth 5.3 technology, which also extends battery life, lowers latency, and increases range. It’s truly one of the more impressive connections we’ve seen—maintaining a strong signal even through layers of extra-thick, pre-war New York City building walls—the downfall of many Bluetooth speakers that came before the StormBox Micro2.  With that same stable connection, you can add an additional StormBox Micro 2 to double volume and create a stereo pair. 

The StormBox Micro 2 is tiny but surprisingly mighty, with 10 watts of output power, a 48mm NdFeB driver, passive radiators, and XBass technology making for a pretty solid listening experience. When tested, the volume reached 90 dB, which is plenty loud for outdoor listening. And while there was a bit of distortion at top volumes, the audio maintained overall clarity. There are about 16 level steps, leaving users feeling in control of their volume preferences. 

When it comes to sound quality, this speaker delivers fairly solid sound. With a frequency response of 70 Hz – 20 kHz, you’ll notice that the bass is a little lacking. Desiigner’s “Timmy Turner” feels a bit lackluster when you can’t experience subbass vibrations; however, we’ve certainly heard worse low end from a compact speaker. Kanye West’s “808s & Heartbreak” feels satisfying with the speaker strapped to my backpack when I can get close to the thump of the passive radiator, though rattling drivers can occasionally distort midrange vocals. At the same time, Phoebe Bridger’s vocals on “Motion Sickness” sat nicely atop drums and guitar backing and the harmonies on Queen’s “All Dead, All Dead” come through evenly. 

The sound of the Tribit StormBox Micro 2 is more than adequate for a speaker that retails for well under $100 and the extra features and fortifications up the value tremendously. If you’re looking for even more of a steal, though, you can try the Oontz Angle 3, which retails for under $40. 

FAQs

Q: What is the loudest waterproof speaker?

One of the loudest waterproof speakers out there is the JBL Boombox 2. It has an IPX7 rating and, when tested, reached over 96 dB. While we wouldn’t describe this speaker as compact, its top handle makes it easy to transport and its audio capabilities make it a great choice for outdoor parties. 

Q: Are shower speakers safe?

Yes, waterproof/shower speakers are safe to use and won’t endanger you. Remember, however, you can’t stick just any speaker in the shower; you need a model with an IPX7 rating to be truly waterproof. Along with IP rating, you should make sure to read all set-up instructions for safe use. For example, most speakers need to be completely dry before charging and some shouldn’t be exposed to water if the aux port is in use, etc. 

Q: How waterproof are JBL speakers?

Many JBL portable Bluetooth speakers are fully waterproof with an IPX7 rating, including the JBL Flip 5, Flip 6, Xtreme 2, Charge 5, Go 3, and Clip 4 (along with select earlier models). However, “many” does not mean “all,” so make sure you check the specs and IP rating on any model you’re eyeing. If the waterproof rating is between 2 to 5, you may still be able to use the speaker while you bathe, but we wouldn’t recommend taking it into the shower with you or subjecting it to a steady stream of water. 

Final thoughts on finding the best waterproof speakers 

Getting wet and wild shouldn’t stop you from having your favorite sounds simultaneously rain down. The best waterproof speakers will keep you connected on the road, on the go, or in the shower. Rain or shine, you’ll be able to keep the party going if you grab a speaker with a high IP rating, long battery life, and solid connectivity. From there, you can pick and choose the special features that are important to you. Soon, you’ll be swimming laps to the tune of your favorite 120BPM song and holding a shower concert for your one-person Britney Spears cover band. 

The post Best waterproof speakers of 2022 appeared first on Popular Science.

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