Music is arguably the most important part of any social function. And while choosing the right music is something we can’t help you with, we can help you make sure whatever you pick sounds good piped through the best outdoor speakers of 2022. Finding ways to play music indoors isn’t that difficult — even budget TVs have passable speakers, and it’s easy to fill a small space with music. If you have a backyard, people will want to move the party to your outdoor space. That’s where the challenge comes in. How do you find speakers to fill an outdoor area and hold out against the weather?
Fortunately, we’ve found some of the best outdoor speakers that can produce big audio and withstand whatever crazy weather might come your way. Most of the options on this list are wired speakers that connect to a stereo system. They’re medium-sized speakers designed to be mounted to a stationary post, providing immersive sound. We’ve included a portable Bluetooth speaker option if you don’t have a stereo system (or a backyard). These are the best outdoor speakers to get if you’re ready to turn your small backyard BBQ into a full-blown block party.
Read More: Keep the Party Going With a Cozy Fire Pit for Your Backyard
How To Pick the Best Outdoor Speakers
If you lack experience setting up home audio systems and architectural audio products, then you need to be careful when purchasing outdoor speakers for your home. That’s because many popular outdoor speakers from brands like Yamaha and Sonos are designed to be connected via a traditional wired connection. In addition, passive speakers (like the Sonos Outdoor Speakers featured below) also require a connected amplifier in order to produce sound. For home audio pros and audiophiles, setting up these systems is child’s play. However, if you’re lacking in DIY know-how, then this type of setup can pose challenges.
When shopping for the best outdoor speakers online, don’t assume that these speakers are compatible with Bluetooth connectivity. We’ve included some of the best portable party speakers we’ve tested in this guide, and brands like JBL, Sonos and Bose all make excellent party speakers that can easily connect to your devices. However, for permanent, architectural speakers, Bluetooth connection is not a given. In fac, it’s the exception to the rule. If Bluetooth connectivity is important to you, be absolutely sure the product you’ve selected offers this feature.
Finally, remember that outdoor speakers by definition need some type of weatherproofing and/or water resistance. The best outdoor speakers are IPX7 waterproof-rated and feature materials with built-in UV resistance. When selecting speakers for your outdoor space, make sure you’ve selected products that can withstand the elements.
1. Polk Audio Atrium 4 Outdoor Speakers
These Polk Audio Atrium 4 speakers come with a rotating bracket for easy mounting, and the baffle shape is designed to produce a broad range of sound. As for the technical specs, these speakers have four 1/2-inch Dynamic Balance polymer cones and 3/4-inch anodized aluminum dome tweeters. These weather-resistant speakers are available in black or white. Keep in mind these are not Bluetooth speakers. If you’re searching for true smart speakers, then the best outdoor speakers for you will be the Pyle Indoor/Outdoor speakers below.
2. Pyle Wall-Mounted 6.5-Inch Indoor/Outdoor Bluetooth Speakers
Pyle’s wall-mounted Indoor/Outdoor speakers can connect via a traditional wired auxiliary cable or via Bluetooth, which gives you more options for streaming and listening to music. Popular outdoor speaker pairs from brands like Sonos and Yamaha lack this essential feature, making this a smart pick for your home. These 6.5-inch speakers are also incredibly easy to install, even for audio novices. Internally, these speakers have a 6.25-inch subwoofer and a 1-inch tweeter.
3. Yamaha NS-AW294BL 2-Way Indoor/Outdoor Speakers
Yamaha’s NS-AW190WH speakers formerly occupied this space, but the new and improved NS-AW294BL model is a more than acceptable replacement. Superior weatherproofing makes these speakers drip, water and UV-resistant, right down to the powder-coated grilles, so you won’t have to scramble at the first drop of rain. Then there’s Yamaha’s long-renowned sound, with two-way bass reflex and powerful woofers. Bear in mind these are hardwired speakers, so they will need to be connected to a stereo system or an amp, meaning there’s no Bluetooth connectivity.
4. Sonos Outdoor Speakers (Pair)
Do you want to make the most of your patio, pool deck or backyard space? Then there’s really only one pair of outdoor speakers you need to consider. Sonos makes the best architectural speakers for virtually every application, and the brand’s outdoor speaker pair is so popular it’s often back-ordered. While these speakers are more expensive than other options here, they offer superior sound and smart features. You can also get installation help from Sonos professionals if you’re not a DIY expert.
Editor’s Note: These passive speakers require an amp to produce sound. To purchase them with an amp, check out the Sonos Outdoor Sound Bundle.
5. JBL FLIP 5 Outdoor Party Speakers
BEST PORTABLE OPTION
JBL is legendary among audiophiles, and they also make quality gear for the average listener. FLIP 5 is a great, compact Bluetooth speaker you can take anywhere, with near-perfect reviews from both SPY product testers and Amazon shoppers. The new JBL FLIP 6 is now available, but while it’s on sale, we think the FLIP 5 is the better option for most people. The powerful battery can be used for up to 12 hours, and the IPX7-waterproof rating means you can submerge it without worrying about damage. It also comes in a range of colors.
Read More: The Best Waterproof Bluetooth Speakers
6. Theater Solutions 2R8G Outdoor Granite Rock Speaker
BEST CONCEALED SPEAKER
If looks are more important than sound quality (up to a point), these are the speakers for you. Designed to look like regular rocks, this set of speakers will pump tunes into your outdoor space without taking away from your backyard’s natural look. What’s more, these speakers are hard-wired and weatherproof so that you can count on a consistent connection no matter the weather.
7. Definitive Technology AW6500 Outdoor Speaker
BEST MOUNTED OPTION
If you have a unique outdoor space, you may want to opt for these mounted speakers. How come? Well, the mounting bracket allows you to rotate these speakers 360 degrees and position them in almost any conceivable way. What’s more, these weather-resistant speakers boast an impressive internal setup with a 6.5-inch woofer, a one-inch tweeter and a 5-by-10-inch oval pressure-driven low bass radiator, which will give you crisp and clean sound even when blasting music.
8. Sonos Roam
BEST PORTABLE BLUETOOTH
The Sonos Roam is a Bluetooth speaker with some impressive specs. It’s IP67 rated, meaning it’s water- and dust-proof. It also delivers 10 hours of battery life. But the Sonos Roam is also a WiFi speaker, which comes with a whole list of benefits when it has a network to connect to. Improved audio quality? Yup. Multi-room audio capability? You bet. Google Assistant and Alexa integration? Absolutely. No smartphone necessary? Bingo. And on top of all that, the Roam can use its special AI capabilities to automatically optimize its sound.
Read More: The Sonos Roam Is the Perfect Portable Speaker
9. Bose SoundLink Revolve (Series II)
Bose updated its SoundLink Revolve speaker last year with the Series II, which boasts an improved 13-hour battery life and built-in speakerphone that works equally well for phone calls or voice assistants like Siri. What makes this speaker shine is its ability to connect to another Soundlink Revolve for even more speaker power. Not that the speaker isn’t worthy on its own; it boasts 360-degree sound and a water-resistance rating of IP55, allowing it to accompany you at the beach or pool. But connect it with another SoundLink, and you can create a surround sound experience for the entire group.
10. Kicker Indoor/Outdoor Speakers
This set of two speakers can be mounted indoors or out, making this a great option for a patio. Each speaker has a robust 6.5-inch woofer and two 5-inch tweeters. The speakers come in gray or black, and the mesh on the front of the speaker has a unique dimpled texture, giving these budget speakers a luxurious look. Mounting hardware is included, and the speakers can be rotated on the bracket for the ideal listening angle.
11. Dual Electronics High-Performance Outdoor Indoor Speakers
For overall value, we like these Dual Electronics High-Performance Outdoor Indoor Speakers. They’re weather-resistant, affordable, and have a rotating bracket that makes finding the optimal orientation relatively simple.
Update: This article was last updated on July 22, 2022, at which time pricing was updated throughout. We also selected new products based on our recent reviews, research and product testing.
To offer additional Bluetooth outdoor speakers, we selected the Pyle Wall-Mounted 6.5-Inch Indoor/Outdoor Speakers as our new “Bluetooth Pick.” For this latest update, we also added the Sonos Outdoor Speaker (Pair) as the “Best Splurge” option. We replaced the Yamaha NS-AW190WH speakers as our “Runner Up” with the updated Yamaha NS-AW294BL speakers and the Anker Bluetooth Speaker with the Sonos Roam for “Best Portable Bluetooth.” We replaced the older Bose Soundlink Revolve with the updated Bose Soundlink Revolve (Series II) as the “Contender.” Finally, we replaced the JBL Flip 4 with the JBL FLIP 5 and included a link to our review of the new JBL Flip 6.