The Best Bluetooth Speakers to Bring the Noise to your Campsite

Believe it or not, we kind of dig music. Whether we’re traveling between fests, or chilling out at the campsite after a day in the sun, we want to crank some tunes. With Bluetooth speakers costing upward of a hundred bucks, it can be hard to choose one that suits our needs. It has to be small and packable if we’re doing 100 Nights of Summer. It has to be durable enough to put up with the beating it can take from our nomadic lifestyles. And most of all – it needs to be able to kick out some sound.

We spent a Saturday afternoon drinking beer and testing Bluetooth speakers so you don’t have to. What’d we look for? The typical stuff: Portability. Durability. Comparing sound output to speaker size. We checked how far we could take the speaker away from our phone before it disconnected (spoiler alert – a lot of them were able to go pretty far). Oh, and if the box said the speakers were waterproof, we checked to make sure they were actually waterproof speakers by turning them on and hucking them into a creek, then fishing them out. Don’t say we don’t go the extra mile to give you the info you need before you spend your hard-earned money on a speaker!

[infobox maintitle=”Ultraportable” subtitle=”Small enough to clip on your pack” bg=”white” color=”black” opacity=”off” space=”30″ link=”no link”]

Speaqua: The Cruiser

Price: $24.99
Testing Tune: The Pack A.D – Everyone looks like Everyone
Battery Life: 5 hours
Waterproof? Functionally waterproof
Linkable? Yes
Attachable? Small canvas loop
Extra: Built in mic for speakerphone

Product Description
Welcome to the more music, more places movement. With simple controls, convenient streaming technology, and dual pairing compatibility, The Cruiser Bluetooth speaker is designed to accompany all of life’s adventures. Its pocket friendly design delivers powerful audio, while the built-in mic allows you to take speakerphone calls on-the-go. With up to 5 hours of listening per battery charge, you can keep your tunes going and the good vibes alive)

Our Notes
We were pleasantly surprised by these speakers – Speaqua sent us two of them and they packed a surprising punch despite being small enough to fit in the palm of your hand. On top of that, we were able to link the two of them together for strategic placement. These were the smallest of the speakers we tested, but they held their own in terms of loudness, range and overall sound quality. They didn’t knock out as much bass as some of the other ultra-portables, but they’re still way better than your phone speaker. Also don’t hang these from your ears to pretend they’re headphones while they’re cranked to max volume.

ECOXGEAR: EcoPebble Lite

Price: $39.99
Testing Tune: Les Savy Fav – What Would Wolves Do
Battery Life: 7 hours
Waterproof? 1P67 Waterproof. Fully submersible.
Linkable? No (double check this)
Attachable? Adjustable bungee strap and thread mount

Product Description
The EcoPebble Lite by ECOXGEAR is our most compact portable audio solution with Bluetooth connectivity, a 7-hour lithium ion battery, and waterproof design that floats. The EcoPebble Lite includes a built-in ¼” attachment for optional mounting, and a colorful and rugged impact resistant outer shell. The EcoPebble Lite is the ideal compact speaker for all your adventures.

Our Notes
Coming in at slightly bigger than the Cruise, the EcoPebble Lite is what we would call “not pocket sized.” Maybe as big around as a coffee cup and two inches or so thick, this speaker would be perfect for a purse or backpack. The sound was stronger than we expected based on the size, and we were pleasantly surprised at the range we could take it away from our phone…go team Bluetooth! If we had to ding it for anything, it would be the spooky woman’s voice as it powers on and off, and the fact that the panel for the charger looks like it might slip off too easily for it to be truly waterproof in an ongoing way.

Braven: brv-105

Price: $49.99
Testing Tune: Japanther – First of All
Battery Life: 8 hour
Waterproof? 1P67 Waterproof
Linkable? No (double check this)
Attachable? Elastic strap and thread mount
Extra? Built in mic for speakerphone

Product Description
The BRV-105 is a palm-sized portable speaker that blasts with full body sound. This lightweight, durable and waterproof Bluetooth speaker can be attached to sport accessories, belt loops, handle bars and more using its versatile elastic strap or 1/4 inch thread mount. While on the go, the internal speakerphone enables hands-free phone calls with noise-canceling technology to eliminate any unwanted background sound. Experience wireless streaming and be amazed by the impressive volume that comes from such a compact speaker with the BRV-105.

Our Notes
Another super portable speaker, this little fella impressed us, especially when we used it as a speaker for our cell phone. Lightweight and durable, this speaker features a belt loop, but it seemed weird to have to take our belt off to hang it. You’ll probably end up using a carabiner to connect it to anything, but the loop is a nice touch.

JBL: CLIP 3

Price: $59.95
Testing Tune: Fake Shark Real Zombie – Painted Gold
Battery Life: 10 hour
Waterproof? IPX7 Waterproof
Linkable? No (double check this)
Attachable? Built in Carabiner
Extra? Built in mic for speakerphone

Product Description
Like no other, the JBL Clip 3 is a unique ultra-portable, ultra-rugged and waterproof Bluetooth® speaker that is small in size but with surprisingly big sound. The upgraded durable and fully integrated carabiner clips to your clothes, belt loop or backpack, making the Clip 3 your outdoor companion on every adventure. The Clip 3 is IPX7 waterproof and offers 10 hours of playtime, powered by a 1000mAh rechargeable Li-ion battery, allowing you to bring your music with you. A built-in noise and echo-cancelling speakerphone gives you crystal clear calls with the press of a button.

Our Notes
The beefiest of the ultra-portable speakers, the JBL Clip offers a built in carabiner and struck us as being the most rugged of the speakers based on our time with it. The sound was also the biggest, with a nice tinge of bass, but it all comes at a price (comparatively). For comparison, you could get two Cruisers for the price of one of these – we might lean toward the JBL in that case, but it’s up to you.

[infobox maintitle=”Portable Speakers” subtitle=”Time to get that campground bumping” bg=”white” color=”black” opacity=”off” space=”30″ link=”no link”]

Ultimate Ears: Wonderboom

Price: $99.99
Testing Tune: Mobbin’ – Grand Theft
Battery Life: 10 hours
Waterproof? IPX7 Waterproof
Linkable? Yes (can have 2 Wonderboom from one source)
Attachable? Hanging Loop
Extra? Rugged build

Product Description
Control your music right from the speaker. Pressing the Ultimate Ears/UE button on the top of the speaker lets you easily play, pause, and skip song.If you think one Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM speaker sounds great, you’ll love how two of them sound together. Then turn things up, get a little crazy and dance like nobody’s looking. Wherever you are. WONDERBOOM is drop proof tested from up to five feet and sports a hanging loop on top so it can easily attach to any bag, bicycle, backpack or cannonball into a cove without thinking twice.

Our Notes
We’re up to the bigger speakers now, and the sound difference is noticeable. We also liked the fun designs this one came in, but the denim stayed wet for a while after we did our waterproof test. Though a bit of wet fabric doesn’t matter much when you can throw your speaker into a river where it will bob and float and play music with no issues. This speaker also had the longest Bluetooth range – we actually lost sight of each other as we tested the distance, believe it or not.

Tribit: 360° Sound Speaker

Price: $69.98
Testing Tune: Galantis – Peanut Butter Jelly
Battery Life: 20 hours
Waterproof? IPX7 Waterproof
Linkable? Yes (can have 2 from one source)
Attachable? No

Product Description
360° immersive sound to every corner with up to 20 hours playtime, feature 24W driver deliver impressive rich, clear sound, IPX7 waterproof that gets loud even when wet.

Our Notes
Labeled as “maxboom” on the box, this one lived up to the hype. This speaker is heavy, with subwoofers on both ends, and features some boomin’ bass. This is a car camping speaker, not a haul it through the airport speaker for sure, but you can probably also hear it from a few campsites over, so it all evens out.

Braven: brv-360

Price: $79.99
Testing Tune: Brockhampton – Bleach
Battery Life: 12 hours
Waterproof? IP67 Waterproof
Linkable? Yes (can have 2 from one source)
Attachable? No
Extra Features: Can charge a cell phone/voice controls

Product Description
The BRV-360 waterproof speaker fires loud, pure audio on all cylinders. Designed to go where you go, this portable speaker easily fits in cup holders and water bottle cages, and is a lightweight addition to backpacks, sport bags or purses. This speaker distributes smooth, consistent 360-degree sound from dual passive radiators with custom, in-house tuning for perfect sound every time. Its certified waterproof exterior and enhanced distance of 100FT is ideal for any outdoor adventure. The built-in voice control works with your smartphone to give a command or make and take calls hands-free.

Our Notes
Two words: incredible bass. Also, the box says it can float, so we dropped this speaker into a spring runoff stream where it bounced into six rocks and ran like a dream. You could even hear the bass when it was underwater. You’re welcome, fish!

[infobox maintitle=”Lightshows” subtitle=”When you need a VIP tent party” bg=”white” color=”black” opacity=”off” space=”30″ link=”no link”]

JBL: Pulse 3

Price: $199.99
Testing Tune: I Love The Bloody Beetroots – The Bloody Beetroots
Battery Life: 12 hours
Waterproof? IPX7 Waterproof
Linkable? Yes (can connect up to 100 speakers
Attachable? No
Extra Features: Lightshow, speaker phone, 3.5mm audio cable input

Product Description
Take your listening experience to the next level with the JBL Pulse 3, the portable, waterproof Bluetooth speaker that combines 360° sound with 360° lightshow. Bring your music to life with glowing LEDs wherever you are. With a built-in rechargeable battery that delivers up to 12 hours of playtime and an IPX7 waterproof housing, Pulse 3 is perfect for worry-free listening by the beach or pool – or even in it. With JBL Connect+ technology, you can wirelessly link more than 100 JBL Connect+ enabled speakers to amplify the party. Pulse 3 also features a noise and echo-cancelling speakerphone for crystal clear calls.

Our Notes
Heavier and larger than most, the JBL Pulse features some seriously huge sound. The changing soft color strobe lights are perfect for late night campsite parties, but beware – this speaker is hypnotic, and in certain states of mind you could literally stare at it for hours

ECOXGEAR: EcoLantern

Price: $129.99
Testing Tune: White Denim – Shake, Shake, Shake
Battery Life: 20 hours
Waterproof? IP67 Waterproof
Linkable? No?
Attachable? No
Extra Features: Shock resistant, submersible, floats

Product Description
The EcoLantern by ECOXGEAR combines both the music and light needed for great outdoor activities. Either while camping or enjoying a backyard BBQ – the EcoLantern is functional and fun. It has a loud 360° sound speaker and bright bi-directional lantern. Use at home or take it with you on your adventures; the waterproof and dustproof constructions is built to endure. 

Our Notes
Hey, should we buy a speaker or a lantern!? Why don’t we have both? This dimmable lantern gives off a strong light with various colors, and as a bonus you can charge phone off it. Comes with distress/late night rave setting. Not as loud or powerful as the JBL, we did find this a bit more confusing than the others to pair, play, and even turn on. Still a great addition for your tent if you need light and EDM at the same time!