The best outdoor speakers in 2024: Great sound and durability

The best outdoor speakers combine solid sound with rugged build to withstand the elements of a life outside. Whether you're cleaning up the yard, picnicking in the park, hanging out at the beach or relaxing by a pool, these all-weather speakers are protected from splashes and a little light rain, and some speaker designs can even be left outdoors the whole year round. 

Here we've tested models of all different shapes and sizes for their ability to survive a sudden rain shower, hot tub splashes or even the occasional dunk in the pool. Many have decent enough battery life to allow you to listen for most of the day, too. 

With one of our best outdoor speakers to hand, you'll be able to rock out to party tunes, or create a more relaxed sound vibe wherever the mood takes you. We’ve tested and rated each model in areas including sound quality, durability and battery life. We've tried each speaker in different locations to see how they perform in the cozy confines of a patio to large backyards or public parks.   

Read on to discover which are the best outdoor speakers to undergo our rigorous review routine, ranked and rated for all kinds of spaces and budgets.

The best outdoor speakers available to buy right now

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Best outdoor speakers for installations

Polk Atrium 4Editor's Choice

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best outdoor speaker overall

Specifications

Drivers: 4.5-inch mid/woofer, 0.8-inch tweeter
Wireless: No
Output: 80 watts
Battery: None
Mounting hardware: Included
Durability rating : IP66

Reasons to buy

+
Large, crisp soundstage
+
Small size for discreet installations
+
Temperature and rain resistant

Reasons to avoid

-
Weak bass 

The best outdoor speakers have to withstand the elements and deliver robust bass, crisp treble and full midrange with enough power to be heard over both the wind and the chatter of a party. These Polk speakers check all the boxes, and still usually cost less than $200.

At 8.6 x 6.7 x 5.7 inches, the Atrium 4s are small enough so that they won't dominate your landscape and big enough to deliver full sound. While they don’t have much bass, they produce more low end than other outdoor speakers of similar size (big bass lover though should perhaps consider Polk's Atrium 5). With a 4.5-inch mid-woofer/tweeter and a 0.8-inch tweeter inside each speaker, the Atrium 4 aptly handled both the distorted guitars of classic rock and the thumping bass of hip-hop while producing clear vocals.

If you want more bass and have the space (and some extra cash), consider Polk's larger Atrium 5 speakers, which come with 5-inch midrange woofer/tweeters.

Read our full Polk Atrium 4 review.

Best value portable outdoor speaker

Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 3best value awards badge

(Image credit: Future)
An impressive outdoor speaker for under $100

Specifications

Drivers: 2x 40mm active drivers; 2x 46.1 x 65.2mm passive radiators
Wireless: Bluetooth
Output: Not stated
Battery: 14 hours
Mounting hardware: None
Durability rating: IP67

Reasons to buy

+
Impressive bass for its size
+
Waterproof design
+
Can pair two together
+
14 hours battery life

Reasons to avoid

-
No USB-C connector

The UE Wonderboom 3 is one of the most well-rounded Bluetooth speakers under $100 that we’ve reviewed. Balanced sound and a portable design make it a great companion, while the Outdoor Boost feature does its job. And for most people 14 hours of battery life is plenty.

If you think you need beefier sound or a longer battery life, the Megaboom 3 might be worth the investment. It also can be paired with additional UE speakers for stereo sound. Charging the Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 3 is our only real disappointment. Going from dead, the speaker took over two hours to reach the chime that indicates a full charge. This is probably due to Micro-USB charging, which is rather outdated, and we wish it had USB-C charging like most of my other devices. Otherwise, the UE Wonderboom 3 is one of the best options for the price.

Read the full UE Wonderboom 3 review.

Best portable outdoor speaker with Wi-Fi smarts

Sonos Move 2

Best portable home speaker with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

Specifications

Drivers: 1x mid-woofer, 2x tweeter
Wireless: Bluetooth, Wi-Fi
Output: Not stated
Battery: 24 hours
Mounting hardware: None
Durability rating: IPX67

Reasons to buy

+
Powerful, balanced sound profile
+
Can pair with another Move 2 for true stereo over Wi-Fi
+
24 hours of battery life

Reasons to avoid

-
Too heavy to carry far

The Sonos Move 2 is a great outdoor speaker and ranks as one of the best Bluetooth speakers on the market. The Move takes the well-tuned sound and rich feature set found in the Sonos One and lets you take it on the go, with a 24-hour battery packed into a portable (albeit fairly hefty) design. 

In our review, we found the Move delivers a crisp sound with satisfying bass and clear vocals. As one of the best smart speakers, the Move 2 works with all major streaming services including Spotify and Apple Music, it sports Apple AirPlay 2 support and can seamlessly switch from Bluetooth to Wi-Fi on the fly. Alexa and Google Assistant support allow you to do anything from check the weather to control your smart home, while the Sonos Voice Assistant offers hands-free playback even when you're on Bluetooth. 

But the best part? The Move's Auto Trueplay tunes the speaker's audio output for wherever you're listening, whether you're having a rooftop party or rocking out in your bedroom.  

Read our full Sonos Move 2 review

Best solar powered outdoor speaker

PR shot of the Lodge Powered speaker paced on table outside next to an outdoor sofa

(Image credit: Lodge)
In direct sunlight, this Lodge solar speaker should never run out of power

Specifications

Drivers: 4-inch midrange/bass, 4-inch passive bass radiator, 3/4 inch tweeter
Wireless: Bluetooth 5.3
Output: 50W
Battery: 22 hours
Mounting hardware: Yes
Durability: IP66

Reasons to buy

+
Well balanced sound
+
Charge from sunlight
+
Can be paired with multiple speakers

Reasons to avoid

-
Solar charging needs direct sunlight
-
Limited app control

As one of the best solar speakers we've encountered, the Lodge Solar Speaker 4 is ideal for long sunny days with your favorite playlist as your soundtrack. It needs a full hour in direct sunlight to achieve a 3 hours of playback, but there's a USB-C port for battery top-ups on cloudy days; battery capacity is expected to top out at 22 hours. The IP66 dirt and water protection rating makes it an ideal outdoor speaker for poolsides, and the Lodge claims that it can handle temperatures from 32º and 115º Fahrenheit (0º to 46º Celsius). 

In our review, we found that the speaker paired easily with Bluetooth devices. It maintained a strong connection outdoors with the playback device placed more than 50 feet away. There are touch controls on the tops surface next to the solar panels that allow users to access Bluetooth pairing and navigate playback, volume, as well as connect to other Lodge speakers. Sound quality was impressive and a match for the Sonos Move 2 listed above. It handled all kinds of music styles well, and although there are no EQ controls, there's a handy Bass Boost mode to add extra oomph should you need it.

Read our full Lodge Solar Speaker 4 review.

Best outdoor installation speaker for bass

Best outdoor speakers: Klipsch AW-650

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
Killer sound and size

Specifications

Drivers: 6.5-inch woofer, 1-inch tweeter
Wireless: No
Output: 85 watts
Battery: None
Mounting hardware: Included
Weatherproof: Yes

Reasons to buy

+
Big, durable design
+
Satisfying bass and crisp treble

Reasons to avoid

-
Impractical size makes them unsuitable for smaller areas

If you subscribe to the "go big or go home" school of outdoor entertaining, the AW-650 speakers are some of the best outdoor speakers you can buy. These monsters of rock measure 15 x 11 x 9.5 inches and feature a 6.5-inch woofer and 1-inch tweeter. The result is thunderous bass and crisp, full vocals that can easily overpower the ambient noise of the outdoors when you want.

The AW-650 speakers are built like a tank, with a UV-resistant ABS plastic polymer enclosure that's backed by Klipsch's lifetime warranty. And at 9 pounds each, you'll want to make sure you securely mount them if you choose to place them up high; they would also work well at floor level.

Read our full Klipsch AW-650 outdoor speaker review.

Best outdoor speakers for installations on a budget

best outdoor speakers: Yamaha NS-AW150W review

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
Affordable and flexible outdoor speakers with good overall sound

Specifications

Drivers: 5-inch Polyetherimide Woofer 0.5-inch dome tweeter
Wireless: No
Output: 35 watts
Battery: None
Mounting hardware: Yes
Water resistant: Yes (IPX7 rated)

Reasons to buy

+
Good sound quality with crisp treble and full vocals
+
Flexible mounting options

Reasons to avoid

-
Mediocre bass performance 
-
Water resistant, not waterproof

When it comes to the best outdoor speakers, the Yamaha NS-AW150W hit a sweet spot in sound, size and cost. They deliver good overall sound, with especially crisp treble and full vocals. The bass isn’t as powerful as others among the best outdoor speakers, but few this size hammer out the low end well.

The speakers produce a crisp sound with some bass, though the low frequencies may get lost among ambient sounds. The sound is also fairly narrow, meaning it doesn’t spread as widely across an open backyard. Still, they produce good vocals and crisp treble, and throw in a bit of bass too — all for just $99 for the pair. 

Read our full Yamaha NS-AW150W review.

Best boombox-style portable

JBL Boombox 3 on a fence outdoors

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
Big sound and long battery life in a chunky portable

Specifications

Size and weight : 19.0 x 10.1 x 7.9 inches; 14.7 pounds
Wireless: Bluetooth
Output: 140W
Battery life (rated): 24 hours
Durability: IP67

Reasons to buy

+
Large-scale sound
+
Booming bass
+
Rugged design and long battery life

Reasons to avoid

-
Heavy for a portable
-
Treble can sound harsh

The JBL Boombox 3 is one of the larger portable Bluetooth speakers around. Its deep bass and vocal clarity fills large open spaces with a big sound that's perfect for larger outdoor parties, and the IP67-rated beast makes it perfect for outdoors events and pool parties.

As the name suggests, this isn’t the first Boombox in the series, and JBL has built on its predecessors with a new three-way speaker system made up of two tweeters, two mid-range drivers and a racetrack-shaped subwoofer.

Its size and shape feels like a bit of a throw-back to those nineties boombox days. But unlike the bulky models of the era, the JBL measures 19.0 x 10.1 x 7.9-inches and weighs an entirely portable 14.7 pounds. Battery life is entirely practical too, and runs to 24 hours for all-day sounds from a 6.5 hour charge. It comes in two color options: black or a more conspicuous squad colors design. Among big portable Bluetooth speakers that are rugged enough to withstand the elements, the JBL Boombox 3 stands out for its sound quality.

Read our full JBL Boombox 3 review.

Best outdoor portable speaker for bass

Best outdoor speakers: UE Hyperboom review

(Image credit: UE)
The best outdoor speaker for huge wireless power

Specifications

Drivers: Dual 4.5-inch woofers, 2x 1-inch tweeters and 2x 3.5 x 7.5-inch passive radiators
Wireless: Yes
Output: N/A
Battery: 24 hours
Mounting hardware: None
Water resistant: Yes (IPX4 rated)

Reasons to buy

+
Big and balanced sound
+
Goes very loud
+
Good battery life

Reasons to avoid

-
Its big size means that it's not exactly portable

The UE Hyperboom blends the size and power of a true outdoor speaker with the versatility of a Bluetooth speaker. This 14-inch tall speaker offers huge, balanced sound for outdoor gatherings and cookouts, and lasts for 24 hours on a charge to power your patio hangs all day and night.

The Hyperboom is also IPX4 rated, making it able to withstand splashes and drizzles. With easy Bluetooth pairing to any mobile device, big bass and sharp high-end, the Hyperboom is one of the best outdoor speakers you can buy for social gatherings.

Read our full UE Hyperboom review.

Also tested

As Tom's Guide's audio experts, we test a lot of speakers but not every model makes it into a buying guide. That's not to say that they're not great performers, just that they're beaten by rival models with a stronger set of features or performance. The picks in this guide are the very best we've tested and have all been given full reviews. But with more models to choose from than ever, we want to make sure that you consider these also tested options. These alternatives have all been through our rigorous testing processes but didn't quite make the grade to rank among the best of the best.

Image

Sony ULT Field 7: As one of the most robust portable speakers for outdoor sounds, Sony's powerful ULT Field 7 has a lot going for it. From the enhanced low-frequency output to the IP67 durability rating, it's an ideal speaker for generating big bass sounds by a pool, say. It's rated to withstand being submerged in up to 1 meter of water for short periods (although we don't recommend trying it out). It goes loud, and bass fiends will love the Sony's output. Audio performance is best when turning on Sound Field Optimization in the companion app, which automatically scans your environment for ambient noise and dynamically adjust sound. Lastly, there are synchronised LEDs at each end of the cylindrical cabinet and battery life is rated at 30 hours. Just be aware that this big portable weighs 14 pounds and its price feels high compared to rivals.  

Read the full Sony ULT Field 7 review 

How to choose the best outdoor speakers for you

5 things to consider

Along with price, there are several other factors to consider when choosing the best outdoor speakers. 

1. Design: As you shop for outdoor speakers, the first thing you’ll want to look for is weather-proofing. Outdoor speakers should be at least partially water-resistant, and if you want to leave them outside all the time, they should be fully waterproof with an IPX7 rating. The next thing you’ll want to consider is how the speakers will be connected. Many outdoor speakers are wired, so you’ll need a power source. If that’s not doable in your backyard or patio, then you will want to concentrate on portable Bluetooth speakers. 

2. Sound quality: Next, think about how big your space is and what kind of volume level you’ll require. If you have a small patio or mainly want music for dinner parties, a smaller set of outdoor speakers may be perfectly adequate. But if you have a large suburban backyard or want to host crowded dance parties, you may want to shop for larger speakers with more audio capacity.

Different models offer different sound, and some models offer personalized sound via companion app, which allows the user to create their own profiles and tweak EQ levels to their hearing.

3. Battery life: Most outdoors speakers are also portable and typically manage around 15 to 20 hours.

4. Accessories: Make sure there's a power/charging cable at the very least, and a user guide.

5. Pricing considerations: Last but not least, there’s cost. Outdoor speakers can get pricey, as they need to be tough and rugged enough to withstand the elements. You can still find great sets at any budget level. Note that Bluetooth speakers are generally going to be more expensive. 

Although there are always exceptions, big-name brands will typically command a bit extra, but generally speaking, the less you spend on an outdoor speaker the greater the chance that sound and features will be compromised. Going for the budget option isn't always the best choice, as any money you save on your purchase won't do you much good if you're constantly needing to recharge your audio gear, or the sound quality is poor. 

As the saying goes: timing is everything; and right now many of our favorite models are discounted at online retailers, meaning you can bag a bargain for even less. Bookmark our tech deals pages to keep track of the lowest prices.

How we test

For the best outdoor speakers, we look at a number of factors. We start with audio quality: how bass, mid-range, treble and vocals sound. Are they balanced? What kind of woofer, midrange driver and tweeter do the speakers have? We also look at size and range to determine how the outdoor speaker will sound in different settings, from a large backyard to a smaller patio or deck. Will the speaker be able to fill various areas or are they better in certain set-ups?

Naturally the best way to answer these questions is to play a variety of music genres, outside in the conditions you'd normally expect to find these speakers.

Next, since these are outdoor speakers, we have to take weatherproofing into consideration. Are they temperature and water resistant? Does the speaker’s housing ward off against bugs and dust? Other factors include how easy it is to mount/install the speakers along with using any smart technology features. 

And we want to test a variety of outdoor speakers at different price points, so that we can recommend one for every type of budget. If you want something even more affordable, check out the best cheap Bluetooth speakers — though only some of these will offer waterproofing.

Contributions from: Michael Gowan, Kate Kozuch

Find out how we test for more information on our reviewing procedures.

More from Tom's Guide

Lee Dunkley
Audio Editor

As a former editor of the U.K.'s Hi-Fi Choice magazine, Lee is passionate about all kinds of audio tech and has been providing sound advice to enable consumers to make informed buying decisions since he joined Which? magazine as a product tester in the 1990s. Lee covers all things audio for Tom's Guide, including headphones, wireless speakers and soundbars and loves to connect and share the mindfulness benefits that listening to music in the very best quality can bring.