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Shopping For Water-Resistant Speakers

Why Buy Water-Resistant Speakers?

Now that you've determined you want water-resistant speakers, you'll want to arm yourself with answers to a few questions to help make the selection best suited to your lifestyle. For example, where will you be using the speakers? In your home? Outdoors? During travel? Do you want speakers you can permanently mount? Or do you want outdoor speakers you can take with you out on the deck or to the beach? And if portable speakers work best for you, how much range will you need? The operating distance of waterproof Bluetooth speakers, for instance, varies depending on model, but generally falls somewhere between 15 and 50 feet. And do you have a brand preference? Bose outdoor speakers are very popular. As are speakers made by Ultimate Ears (UE), JBL Bluetooth speakers, Altec Lansing speakers, speakers by Coleman and Braven, and Sony wireless speakers.

Does Water-Resistant Mean Waterproof?

For the most part, the difference between water resistant and waterproof lies in the speaker housing, with the electronics remaining pretty much the same. The level of water resistance a speaker has is often indicated by its IP Code (or International Protection Rating, also called Ingress Protection Rating). The IP Code is listed with two numbers. The first number represents the level of protection that the enclosure provides against solids, while the second number represents the level of protection inside the equipment against water.

For example, a speaker with a level 7 IP liquid rating is protected against immersion between 15 centimeters and 1 meter in depth for up to 30 minutes, which is typically the rating for a "waterproof" speaker. An item with the code IP67 is dust tight (represented by the first number) and protected against immersion between 15 centimeters and 1 meter in depth for up to 30 minutes (represented by the second number). A rating of IP00 means the speaker is not protected from solids or water at all. Somewhere in the middle are speakers that are splash proof, weatherproof speakers able to stand up to the elements, and shower speakers.

Speaker Connectivity

You’ll want to decide which type of connectivity will work best for lifestyle when deciding on your water-resistant speakers, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth? Wi-Fi speakers connect to your home network and generally require an electrical outlet for power. Both indoor or outdoor Bluetooth speakers are usually battery-powered, compact, and very easy to connect. The majority of portable, water-resistant speakers use Bluetooth wireless technology, providing music by linking to other devices like MP3 players or an iPod, smartphones, tables or laptops. They often have a built-in charger, and can also serve as a speakerphone. Water-resistant Wi-Fi speakers generally have a longer range than water resistant Bluetooth speakers, and some portable speakers include both connectivity options.

Get More Out of Your Water-Resistant Speakers

To optimize your enjoyment of your portable speakers, check out our speaker accessories, where you'll find protective covers and travel/carry bags, chargers and cables, adapters, mounts and stands. You can also check out audio receivers and transmitters that allow you to add wireless streaming functionality.