This content originally appeared on Mashable for a US audience and has been adapted for a UK audience.
Modern life is not complete without a Bluetooth speaker, an essential device for music lovers who like to be smart and connected.
A Bluetooth speaker can integrate seamlessly into a smart ecosystem, allowing you to turn up the volume on your phone or talk to Alexa, not to mention offering convenient portability for taking your vacation or even your daily commute.
There are many high-quality speakers on the market, so you have many options. The problem with having so many impressive products from top brands is that choosing the right device can be difficult. That’s where we come in. Here’s a quick guide.
Do Bluetooth speakers sound good?
You will be surprised by the quality of the audio technology of Bluetooth speakers. But what will you use your speaker for? Purely music? Podcasts? A little of both? It will surely influence the type of speaker you end up buying, whether it’s surround sound, Dolby Atmos, something for the good views, or just a stereo (which is also great; don’t feel pressured to buy something super fancy and expensive if you don’t really need it). Not all speakers produce the same type of sound quality, so it’s important to know exactly the type of listening experience you’re looking for.
What size are Bluetooth speakers?
Speakers can be quite large, even portable ones, so evaluate how much usable space you want to dedicate to your audio setup, both horizontally and vertically. Not everyone has room for multiple speakers working together, so don’t overwhelm yourself with something gigantic if it will constantly get in your way. There are many speakers that can be easily stored or hidden, and some that are small enough to rest on a table or shelf.
How many speakers do you need to buy?
We always recommend choosing quality over quantity. Having two amazing speakers will always give you better results than having five average speakers. Additionally, having too many speakers around will take up an unnecessary amount of space. If you have space, we think two speakers is the perfect number.
Two speakers are especially ideal if you listen to a lot of music; Music is usually recorded in stereo configuration, so having a left and right channel will do you wonders. And if you have a smaller space, even a really good speaker will do (as long as it sounds great). Many Bluetooth speakers also have easy pairing options with other speakers from the same brand, so setting them up should be a breeze.
What are smart speakers?
These are speakers that also function as smart devices, which can connect to Alexa or sync with other smart home devices. They’re great on their own, but they’re not always the best way to listen to music (sorry, Alexa). If you really can’t live without having some sort of smart assistant within your speaker setup, we recommend getting something with Bluetooth and connecting it to your smartphone. That way, you’ll get the benefits of your phone’s built-in smart assistant without downgrading.
Are Bluetooth speakers waterproof?
Many modern speakers have some kind of waterproof. That means you can have fun in the pool or on the beach. Or, uh, the bathroom. Even if you don’t plan to take your speaker on vacation, it’s not out of the question that it could be subject to spills, no matter where you have it in your home.
What is the best Bluetooth speaker?
There are many Bluetooth speakers worth considering. We’ve tracked down some of the best options. We’ve lined up stunning Bluetooth speakers from the biggest brands, with something for everyone and every budget.
These are the best Bluetooth speakers of 2023.