As the weather gets warmer and we start to plan outdoor get-togethers, it’s time to think about outdoor music, too. If you’ve got a sunny spot on your deck, lawn, or by your garden, you’ll probably want some tunes to accompany your outdoor activities. If it’s time to tackle those weeds and get your garden back in shape for spring or summer, then a speaker also makes a great companion while you work.
Of course, you’ll need a model that can stand some dirt, dew, and general outdoor conditions no matter what you’re doing. You'll also want smart features that play friendly with your phone. Here are our top picks for outdoor garden fun or chores!
Best outdoor smart speaker
- Excellent design
- Lightweight and portable
- Totally water and dustproof
- Very good sound for its size
- Choice of smart speaker assistants
- Wireless charging
- No Bluetooth stereo pairing
- Doesn’t work as a speakerphone
- Less battery life than some other speakers
The all-purpose nature of the Roam makes it an excellent speaker for anywhere, allowing you to easily move it from the kitchen to the garden and everywhere in between. It’s also very smart, supporting control through the Sonos app, AirPlay 2, or your choice of voice assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant. Don’t let the elegant design fool you either: This speaker is durable and waterproof, more than ready to accompany you outside, and has plenty of audio oomph.
The battery on the Roam lasts around 10 hours of playtime, and you can recharge it via USB-C or a wireless charger. It can also connect to any other Sonos speaker you may be using, allowing you to link a few together and place them around a patio or lawn for an afternoon filled with music.
JBL Go 3
Best outdoor smart speaker for solo listening
- Highly portable personal speaker
- Handy loop for keeping it close
- Waterproof and dustproof
- Not suitable for more than one listener
JBL makes excellent Bluetooth speakers for all kinds of outdoor adventures: This model in particular is made to be super portable, with a loop at one end that you can hook around anything you want. While it may not be filling an outdoor party with sound, it’s an excellent little companion for solo gardening, as you can hook it on your belt and listen to some private tunes while you work.
Don’t worry, this model is also plenty durable, both waterproof and dustproof, and designed to go anywhere. It supports streaming via Bluetooth, so you just need to keep your phone nearby. The battery lasts for about six hours of playback before needing a recharge via its USB-C connection.
JBL Flip 6
Best outdoor smart speaker for entertaining a crowd
- Solid build quality
- Loud and clear sound
- Lightweight and portable
- Excellent water and dust protection
- EQ offers some sound tweaking
- Works with JBL Portable app and PartyBoost
- Can't stereo pair with non-Flip 6 JBL speakers
- Doesn’t work as a speakerphone
- Not drastically different from Flip 5
Private music is fine for a little bit of gardening, but if there’s more than one person around you may want something larger than a personal speaker. The Flip 6 is designed to be that larger solution, a more powerful Bluetooth speaker, known for its deep bass and party-friendly nature, including the PartyBoost mode for easily connecting multiple Flip speakers and filling an area with big sound. Don’t worry, though: Even a single model is enough to supply a backyard space with sound with its up to 13 hours of battery life.
The IP67 resistant rating means this speaker is fully waterproof and dustproof, so you don’t need to worry about where you take it. The roly-poly design is also quite forgiving about where it’s placed or moved, while being compact enough to avoid getting in the way of any other activities.
Ultimate Ears Megaboom 3
Best outdoor for hanging out on a pool float
- Loud, dynamic sound
- Easy to use
- Great battery life
- Some functionality only supports Apple Music/Deezer
The Megaboom 3 is the perfect speaker for perching on a nearby deck, bench, table, or chair while you are in the garden. The simple design includes easy onboard playback controls, plus Bluetooth support. It’s incredibly durable and very waterproof, including the ability to float, so you don’t need to worry about using it poolside.
The battery life for this speaker is also very impressive, clocking in at around 20 hours on a full charge, easily enough for a full day in the sun and then some. Like many of our other picks, it also has the ability to pair with similar Megaboom speakers if you’d like to add even more sound.
JBL Boombox 2
Best outdoor smart speaker for battery life
- Larger design with powerful party bass
- Still waterproof and dustproof
- Carrying handle
- Built-in power bank
Imagine you’re really serious about your backyard gatherings. Sometimes you’re eating on the deck, sometimes you’re playing on the lawn, but either way, you want a portable speaker that’s going to be bring real sound for a party that multiple people across a larger area can enjoy. The Boombox 2 is a larger option perfectly designed for outdoor gatherings, including noteworthy base, sound that reaches much farther than smaller speakers, and a massive 24-hour battery life.
Like most of JBL’s speaker, the Boombox 2 is also waterproof and dustproof resistant, making it safe for outdoor use. The built-in handle also allows you to reposition the speaker easily if the party moves elsewhere over time. Oh, and it even has a built-in power bank so that people can connect their smartphones for a quick recharge while the speaker is playing. You won’t find many models more friendly for your backyard parties.
Klipsch AQ659 Speaker Pair
Best smart speaker for outdoor installation
- Excellent sound quality
- Speaker pair for yard-filling audio
- Can easily fit under eaves
- Requires extensive wiring for installation
If you want serious — and permanent — sound in your garden space, this Klipsch speaker pair is made for outdoor installation, such as under your eaves or in other spots where they can fill your yard with sound without getting in the way. The Klipsch 85W design reliably provides excellent sound that’s hard to find with more portable models, with each speaker including a 1-inch tweeter and 6.5-inch IMG woofer.
The downside is that these speakers exchange sound quality for most smart features, including Bluetooth. That means you’ll have to do some wiring work and find a good receiver with Bluetooth/app control to connect to them, so be prepared to put in the work.
Bluetooth is the way to go here, although there are some exceptions, especially if speakers need to be wired in.
With a Bluetooth connection, all you will need is a nearby phone or similar devices where you have a music streaming app or music library. Pair your device with the speaker just like you would with Bluetooth headphones.
Wi-Fi speakers connect directly to your wireless network rather than a one-on-one Bluetooth connection. However, this setup isn't a common choice for outdoor speakers because Wi-Fi reception in outdoor areas tends to be unreliable.
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