Best Passive Outdoor Speakers – We’ve been reviewing tech products since 2008. Our experts have seen it all, and these guides have been created by combining their years of experience.
Looking for a single speaker or multi-speaker outdoor system? Our guide includes great waterproof, wireless and wired options.
Best Passive Outdoor Speakers
Large outdoor speakers can reliably enhance the ambiance of your backyard or patio with high-quality sound. If you love listening to music or audio outside, but are tired of banging your indoor speakers back and forth, it may be time to invest in a quality outdoor speaker.
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We’ve done an extensive amount of research to find outdoor speakers that deliver performance and value. Here you will find our selected options that stood out when surveying all the options and judging by user experiences and reviews.
So, what are the best wireless, waterproof and wired outdoor speakers? There is no one right answer, other than those that offer the best value that fits your needs and budget!
Whether you’re looking for a good low-cost speaker or want to spend more for a premium, premium option, we hope you’ll find what you’re looking for in our updated 2022 outdoor speaker buying guide.
Investing in waterproof outdoor speakers should be a non-negotiable when looking for an outdoor speaker system. If you plan to leave your outdoor speakers outside, they will likely be exposed to rain or at least significant moisture at some point.
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Therefore, most outdoor speakers are designed to be waterproof, but not all are. We’re only interested in the ones that can handle the elements, so the main difference on the list is if the speaker is wired versus wireless.
The OUTDRWW1 speakers from Sonos are high quality and reliable. These are passive speakers designed to work in conjunction with a Sonos amp, so you’ll need to run speakers to them and you’ll need to install the Sonos amp indoors or in a dry area. So while the Sonos system is technically wireless, these are wired speakers in terms of installation.
It’s possible to power up to three pairs of these speakers with a single Sonos amplifier, which provides a range of expandable high-quality audio reproduction options, suitable for patios or yards of various sizes.
These speakers deliver powerful sound that’s tailor-made for the outdoors. They are built to withstand extreme weather conditions such as water, UV rays, heat and freezing temperatures.
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Of course, part of the appeal here is that the Sonos speakers work together with the Sonos app to deliver simple, reliable, and yet largely customizable listening experiences.
This option is currently listed at the highest price for a pair of speakers on our list. That said, Sonos speakers have earned their high price tag due to their exceptional quality and reliability.
If you are looking to invest in a high-quality outdoor system, the Sonos OUTDRWW1 speaker is perhaps the best choice, which has the distinct advantage of being part of a whole-home Sonos system as an option, and can withstand harsh weather conditions. .ability to cope.
If you’re looking for high-quality speakers that can be used indoors and outdoors, the Bowers & Wilkins AM-1-2 Road Speaker is for you. These are rated to withstand almost any weather condition and do so without compromising on sound quality.
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The AM-1 loudspeaker has a discreet yet elegant appearance, ideal for moderate installation in indoor or outdoor spaces. Note that these are passive, wired speakers that require an amplifier or receiver to drive. But it opens up a world of possibilities, considering how modern connected AV receivers are packed with features, including Bluetooth and Wi-Fi streaming options.
Just remember, the speaker itself doesn’t have a Bluetooth connection or any way to make sound itself, but that’s the case with most external speakers. You can even drive them—gasp, like the Sonos Outdoor Speakers!—a Sonos amp. How you empower them is up to you.
Bowers & Wilkins is a company that makes great sounding speakers. While some outdoor speakers compromise sound in the process of creating a weatherproof design, Bowers & Wilkins chose to make sound quality a priority without compromising on weatherproofing.
AM-1 speakers can withstand dirt, dust, UV rays and rain. They are a great option in indoor/outdoor spaces like covered patios and garages.
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The MartinLogan ML-65AW is another option for an outdoor all-weather speaker. This pair of speakers is specially made for outdoor use and can be used in all weather conditions. The speakers can withstand extreme temperatures, rain, snow, dust and dirt.
Most users find the sound quality of the MartinLogan ML-65AW speaker to be exceptional. Some buyers have added a subwoofer, only to find that the sound quality from the speakers was already excellent, and the extra bass wasn’t needed.
Like most outdoor speakers, the MartinLogan ML-65AW speakers require a wired connection to an amplifier. This can be an advantage though, as it is easier and more practical to run low voltage speaker cable than to keep the AC auxiliary power outside. Remember, wireless speakers don’t have to be wireless!
If you’re looking for a high-quality outdoor speaker system, the MartinLogan ML-65AW speakers may be a bit more expensive than some of the other options on this list, but less than the options from Sonos or Bowers & Wilkins. These speakers deliver high reliability and sound quality, ranking among the best outdoor speakers.
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Klipsch is a company that is always about giving you ‘bang for the buck’. Certainly, such is the case with the AW-400 outdoor speaker.
If you’re looking for a reliable all-weather cable option at an easy-to-reasonable price point, these might be the best speakers for you.
While not the least expensive on the list, the price is about half that of more expensive wired speakers. Buyers looking for a middle ground between affordability and quality will find Goldilocks’ “perfect” answer in the Klipsch AW-400 external speaker.
These speakers receive high ratings and rankings online from verified owners and have a reputation for producing high-quality sound, especially considering their size and price.
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These speakers are designed for outdoor use, so they can handle extreme temperatures and heavy rain. But they are a little on the small side, and some buyers note that they are a little bass-shy. And a 91Hz-20kHz±3dB rated frequency response backs it up. However, this is exclusive to external speakers and if strong bass is a priority, you can add a subwoofer, or else some of the more expensive options on this list will serve you better.
Most users seem more than satisfied with the overall performance of the Klipsch AW-400 external speaker. Power usage is rated at 50 watts with 200 watts peak.
And now for something different. The Victrola Wireless Waterproof Rechargeable Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speaker pair delivers great features at an attractive price point—and still managed to sound good at modest volume levels. Unlike the other speakers on this list, these are battery powered and have Bluetooth. So they are both wired and wireless!
Victrola Rock speakers do not need to be connected to a power source to operate. Instead, they simply need to be charged and connected to a Bluetooth device. On a single charge, the Victrola Rock speakers deliver 10 hours of playtime. The speakers are easy to pop in and out for charging and you can take them out again when you’re ready to use them again.
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The Victrola Rock speakers are designed to look like rocks. This allows you to hide them in your yard or garden, to provide pleasant music without the distracting sight of the visual speakers.
The Victrola Rock speakers are weatherproof, so if you leave them outside and it rains, it doesn’t matter. You can also charge them externally.
If you’re looking for an affordable wireless speaker that’s in tune with nature, truly free of wires and cords, and has Bluetooth pairing, the Victrola Rock speaker could be just the ticket to add tunes to some pleasant afternoons. Courtyard.
Here’s a premium outdoor speaker that delivers premium sound—including better bass than most outdoor speakers—at a very reasonable price. And unlike some external speakers, it’s sold as a single speaker, as opposed to a pair.
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The AW6500 offers a rated frequency response of 40-30,000 Hz (± 3dB) which is quite wide for a speaker of this size. How does it achieve this? Because it uses a passive radiator, which serves the same purpose as a portable speaker, but does not present the same problems with weather resistance as a hole in the speaker. But the passive radiator is able to boost bass output, and this larger-than-typical enclosure results in a speaker that delivers better performance than an external speaker, especially at its price point.
The Fixed Technology AW6500 speaker, like most of the speakers on this list, requires a wired connection to a receiver or amplifier.
Setting up a backyard patio is a delightful way to spend spring or summer evenings. A projector and inflatable screen bring a bigger picture anywhere you want, but for true surround sound, you’ll need a system.
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