Waterproof Bluetooth Speakers On The Lake
Being out on the water is always a good time, but when you can bring some music onto the water, it’s a party. Having a great wireless Bluetooth speaker that is waterproof means that you never have to worry about dropping it in the water, as long as it floats and is waterproof, you won’t lose it. If it doesn’t float, most of them can be tied down.
I have written a post earlier over at The Camping Nerd about the best Bluetooth speakers for outdoors, not all of the speakers in that post are 100% waterproof (IPX7) though, so all the speakers we’re looking at here today will be IPX7/IP67 rated, meaning that you can submerge it in water without damaging it.
Let’s get to the speakers!
All Speakers On The Table
Note: Scroll left/right on tablets and phones
A Closer Look At Each Speaker
First up in today’s post is this little speaker from FosProof. Where this one wins is in size, it’s the lightest one in today’s comparison. FosPower advertises 10 hours of battery life, making it a great option for water activities where you’re out on the water for several hours on end.
If one is not powerful enough for you there’s a feature that will let you pair two of them and get a bigger stereo-sound.
The speaker floats in water and is designed to expel water when music is played. It also has a built-in carabiner so you can tie it down and not have to worry about losing it.
Multi-functional buttons on top let you play, pause, switch songs, and turn up and down the volume. Amazon Alexa and Google Home are supported through the built-in microphone.
So who is this speaker for? Well, the carabiner will let you hang it on your backpack if you’re going on a hike, and with 10 hours of battery life, you can spend a whole day listening to music without running out of juice. There is no AUX input so it’s all about wireless Bluetooth. Bring it to the shower, pool, beach, or just listen to music at home. It won’t have the best sound quality, but if that’s not your biggest concern, go for it.
- 10 Hour Battery Life
- Stereo pairing
Next up, Tribit XSound Go. This is the speaker that will be good enough for most people. In fact, it has incredible battery life. Tribit advertises up to 24 hours of continuous use, not bad.
You can keep it secured to your paddleboard, kayak or boat with the built-in loop and the included carrying strap.
What’s impressive with the XSound Go is the sound it can put out for its size. Although it only weighs 13.4 oz and measures 6.7 x 2.2 x 2.3, it’s competing with speakers that cost twice as much in terms of sound quality.
The built-in microphone will let you control both Siri and Google Now. Buttons on top will let you access those smart assistants, but also control volume and songs.
Note that although it has a 3.5mm aux input, there is no cable included with the speaker.
So is it the speaker for you? It very well could be. The battery life is impressive, you can strap it to a paddleboard with ease, connect an aux cable to it to save battery, talk to smart assistants, and most importantly, submerge it in water without worrying about damaging it. The sound quality is good and that together with the other features make this one of my top 3 picks for water activities.
- Great Battery Life
- AUX Input
- Carry Strap Included
- Great Sound For Size
Anker is a company most known for their phone accessories. Batteries, cables, wireless charging mats, and USB chargers are some of their most sold products. But they also make speakers. One of them being the Soundcore Motion Q that we’re taking a look at today.
Anker advertises this speaker as a 360° sounding speaker for outdoor activities. With its IPX7 rating, it can be used in a lot of places and weather without taking a beating. They want you to hang it in the shower, hook it onto your paddleboard, and a built-in rope makes that easy. The Soundcore Motion Q is one of the speakers today that floats.
Siri and other smart assistants are supported through the built-in microphone, so if you like controlling your music or texts by talking to your devices, you’ll like this one. If you would rather push a button to control your music, you can use the ones on top to control the volume, skip songs, and play/pause.
If one Motion Q isn’t giving you enough sound, you can buy another one and pair them for stereo sound.
The battery in this little thing lasts up to 10 hours, so a whole day on the lake when fully charged shouldn’t be an issue at all. If you want to save some battery, you can plug in an AUX cable and play music wired.
The Soundcore Motion Q is a great speaker with tons of features for the price. It’s a great companion to bring onto the lake for the day. The reason this isn’t in my top 3 is due to the battery life. It’s not bad at 10 hours, but in comparison to the Tribit XSound Go, it’s relatively low. The Soundcore Motion Q produces louder sound though, so it’s up to you to decide what’s important to you. I would argue that the Tribit has better sound quality, but the Anker is louder. If you want a portable speaker for the boat, loudness will probably be more important than sound quality.
- AUX Input
- Carry Strap
- 10 Hour Battery Life
Next up, JBL Flip 4. One of my favorite Bluetooth speakers. It not only sounds great, but looks great. It comes in several different colors and styles.
Just like some of the speakers above, you can connect several speakers together for a bigger sound. This is a neat feature if you’re two people or more on the lake on paddleboards. Put a speaker on each paddleboard and you can have a loud party out on the lake.
The battery in the Flip 4 lasts up to 12 hours, so if you can charge it every night, you won’t have issues with a dead battery. You can also save a little bit of battery by playing your music wired instead of wirelessly. Using Bluetooth instead of the AUX input uses slightly more battery.
A strap is included with the speaker so you can tie it to your paddleboard to make sure you don’t lose it because it doesn’t float. Big buttons will let you control your music, skip songs, and control volume. The built-in microphone will let you control voice assistants.
So is the JBL Flip 4 for you? Well, compared to the speakers above, it has better sound quality. Better sound quality and speaker design can be important if you like to listen to music loud. Cheaper speakers distort at high volumes, but Flip 4 doesn’t. If you prefer sound quality over long battery life, this is a great choice and that’s the reason it’s on my top 3 list. If it was an omnidirectional speaker, it might’ve been my No 1.
- Great Sound Quality
- Carry Strap
- 12 Hour Battery Life
- AUX Input
- Several Colors To Choose From
The Bose SoundLink Micro is Bose’s answer to an IPX7 rated Bluetooth speaker. It’s a very small lightweight speaker that comes at a Bose price. I am weak for Bose after buying a SoundLink Mini which I absolutely love and is still my to-go speaker when it comes to outdoor listening. The SoundLink Micro doesn’t come close in terms of sound quality, but it’s still good for what it is.
It comes in three different colors, and is IPX7 rated so having it out in the water won’t cause any damage. Its rugged exterior also resists dents, cracks, and scratches. When you hold it in your hand that’s exactly how it feels, rugged.
Although the sound quality is only average at best, we only get 6 hours of battery life. Somewhat inconvenient, as it won’t last a full day on the water, but at this size, I don’t know how they would fit a bigger battery.
A microphone is built-in so you can talk to your voice assistants and these are directly accessible with the push of a button on the speaker itself. Other than that, you can control the volume, skip tracks and play/pause with the buttons found on the front.
If you only buy speakers from Bose and want a fully waterproof little gadget, this is it. For everybody else, I can’t recommend it as there are better choices for a lower cost. I expect Bose to release something slightly bigger and better sometime soon (wishful thinking) so I will come back and update this article when that happens.
- Several Colors To Choose From
Next up is my favorite in today’s comparison, the Ultimate Ears BOOM 3. This is the best fully waterproof Bluetooth speaker available on the market today for water activities. Let’s talk about why.
It has great sound quality with a 360-degree sound. It gets loud, and the sound doesn’t distort at high volumes. The speaker will last for up to 15 hours before needing a charge so a day or two on the lake without charging shouldn’t be a problem.
A bungee hanger on the upper back will let you secure the speaker to your paddleboard but guess what, even though it’s the heaviest speaker in today’s comparison at 1.8 lbs, it floats!
Big buttons along the side will let you control the volume, while a “magic” button on top will let you play, pause, skip and control the music.
The Boom 3 comes in three different colors.
A big reason to why this is my top pick for water activities like paddleboarding is the fact that it’s a 360° sounding speaker. When we go paddleboarding and listen to music we don’t want to have to worry about what way our speaker is facing. A 360° will sound the same no matter what way it’s facing, and that’s a big pro when you’re out on the lake. There are better-sounding speakers on the market that are also IPX7 rated (check out the JBL Charge 4 if sound accuracy and quality matters more to you), but I left them out due to this fact, as the user experience is more important to me than sound quality while out on the water. It depends on what you prefer.
- Huge Volume Buttons
- Great Sound And Bass for a 360-degree speaker
- 15 Hour Battery Life
When it comes to waterproof speakers that I can bring out with me on the paddleboard, the most important thing is a good user experience. Battery life second, sound quality third. Today we’ve looked at several speakers at different price-points and I hope I have helped you find what you’re looking for. Here are my recommendations based on my research.
Good: Tribit XSound Go – Tribit has done a great job on the XSound Go, and this will be more than enough for most people. It’s loud, clear, and has great battery life. Exactly what you would want from a speaker when you’re out on the water.
Better: JBL Flip 4 – A step up from the Tribit is the JBL Flip 4. Better sound quality, even clearer sound, from a well-known brand. A great option that won’t disappoint out on the boat or kayak.
Best: Ultimate Ears BOOM 3 – I believe the Ultimate Ears BOOM 3 will deliver the best user experience out on the lake out of the products we’ve looked at today. Although it’s heavy, it floats. Although it’s loud and clear, it has good battery life. Big buttons, a safety hanger, and lots of control on top of the speaker make this my favorite speaker for water activities like paddleboarding, kayaking, boating etc. Although not part of today’s comparison, if you would rather have sound accuracy and sound quality than a 360-degree sounding speaker, the JBL Charge 4 is the one I would buy.
What To Consider
Battery Life – The first thing to consider for most people should be the battery life. A dead battery means no speaker, so it’s pretty easy to understand why it’s important. Are you going to be gone for a week without being able to charge your speaker? Well, then battery life should play a huge role in your decision. Think about how many hours you usually spend on the lake, and choose thereafter before you start thinking about sound quality and other features.
360° – Like I talked about earlier, a big benefit to having a 360° speaker is that it won’t matter what way the speaker is facing, it will sound the same. If you’re just going to sit on the beach with the speaker next to you, this won’t matter much and you might as well go with a speaker that sounds better but is mono, something like the JBL Charge 4. For kayaking, paddleboarding, and boats, I believe a 360-degree sound is a great feature to have.
Waterproof – Do you even need a waterproof speaker? You can get better-sounding speakers that aren’t fully waterproof but can take a splash, like the Bose SoundLink Color. If you’re just going to sit on the beach or put the speaker on a boat where it won’t get submerged in water, maybe you don’t need an IPX7-rated speaker.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does IPX7/IP67 mean?
These are official IP-ratings. IP, Ingress Protection, define how well electrical gadgets are sealed against dirt and moisture. Each number stands for a certain specification. You can read more about these ratings and numbers here.
Why didn’t you include (insert speaker name here)?
If I didn’t include a speaker that you believe would fit right in on this list, let me know in the comments. I can’t fit all speakers on one list and decided to make a list with different brands at different price points. It’s not all about sound quality and accuracy to me when it comes to finding the right speaker for the water.