Many people have elaborate home theater systems or stereo systems in their homes, but they have to use an old, portable stereo with an extension cord in order to get any music outside their homes. An outdoor speaker system can give you the type of sound quality you want at your pool party or backyard BBQ. These permanent audio fixtures are specially designed to be resistant to water, heat and the other elements of nature.
We've put together a side-by-side comparison of 10 outdoor speaker models so you can see, at a glance, which one best fits your needs. In addition, you can read detailed reviews of each product alone with articles relating to outdoor speakers. At TopTenREVIEWS We Do the Research So You Don’t Have To.™
Purchasing any audio equipment can be a daunting task. With powered outdoor speakers or passive outdoor speakers, you want to make sure the unit is durable but that it is also able to produce good sound in an outdoor setting. After all, playing audio in the open air is much different than in an insulated room with four walls. In this review we examined each model to see if it held up to the following criteria:
The physical construction of the outdoor speaker unit has a direct effect on how much sound it can produce. This section rates the size of the tweeter, the driver which is dedicated to playing the high frequencies, and the woofer, which is the driver that plays the midrange and lower frequencies. This area also takes into account how much power is required to play at decent volumes and the peak amount of power the drivers can handle. A well-designed driver will keep your sound from dissipating into the air.
Even though your backyard may be bigger than your living room, a compact design is still appreciated. Outdoor speaker systems still need to be as inconspicuous as possible. Since each one of these units is wall-mountable, they need to be lightweight as well. However, the small size should not equate to small sound.
This is a specific rating of the how well the products perform. This section looks at the frequency response of each model, which is a measurement of the range of frequencies the drivers can reproduce. We also take into account the nominal impedance and the sensitivity of the unit. Impedance indicates how much resistance the voice coil in these units has to an incoming current, whereas sensitivity measures how well the device converts power into decibels.
Help & Support
Technical support is important for any audio equipment. We examined each one of the manufacturer's websites to see what kind of customer support they offered. Telephone support may be enough for some, but others may prefer contacting the manufacturer through email or live chat. We also noted what kind of warranty covered each product.
Using the criteria above, we found the Yamaha NS-AW570, Yamaha NS-AW390 and Polk Audio Atrium 55 to be the best outdoor speaker options available. Each one of these models offers superior audio quality and an exceptional design. They are also backed up by excellent customer support. Regardless of which outdoor speaker you choose, we're sure that you'll feel confident about your purchase after comparing the ratings and reading the reviews on our site.