We scoured the internet and pored over reviews to figure out what makes a great wearable speaker. By the end of our search, we came to the conclusion that the best speakers can be worn while doing multiple activities, offer good sound quality and battery life, and won’t be affected by a little rain or sweat.
Many are worn on the neck, wrist, or as a clip-on, include wireless technology such as Bluetooth, and are built largely for use during exercise or workouts. Keeping these factors in mind, here are some of our favorite wearable speakers available online.
Top 10 Best Wearable Speakers to Buy Online
Finding the right speaker for you is as much about considering the specs as it is about finding the right balance of quality, function, and price.
1. Doltech Wearable Speaker with Retractable Earbuds
This wearable speaker features retractable earbuds so you can listen to your music two different ways. It has a silicone neckband that makes it comfortable and easy to put on, and it stays in place.
Reviewers note that the volume is more than adequate and that the sound is balanced, even, and high quality enough to satisfy most. The battery reliably lasts all day and holds out for slightly longer when using the earbuds.
|Sound||Dimensional surround sound, advanced CSR 8645 chip|
|Battery Life||10 hours play, 8 days standby|
|Water Resistance||IPX4 (sweat and moisture resistant)|
2. Bose Soundwear Companion Wireless Wearable Speaker
Best High End, High-Quality Speaker
This ergonomically shaped speaker sits comfortably on your shoulders and bends to easily slip on and off. Its upwards facing speakers offer deep, rich surround sound that doesn’t bother those around you.
It switches easily between two Bluetooth paired devices, and the battery life lives up to its claims. Despite its high price tag, reviewers note that it’s absolutely worth it and that the quality you get exceeds expectations.
|Sound||Patented waveguide technology, digital signal processing|
|Battery Life||12 hours play|
|Water Resistance||IPX4 (sweat and moisture resistant)|
3. Zulu Audio Wearable Bluetooth Speakers
Best for High Movement Activities
These speakers drape around your neck and are held in place with magnets. Because they’re pinned down to your shirt, they’re great for more movement intensive activities like running.
Reviewers report that although it’s a little low on bass, the sound is otherwise very clear and offers a fantastic range of volume (one reviewer noted being able to wear and hear it while snowboarding).
|Battery Life||8 hours play|
|Water Resistance||IPX4 (sweat and moisture resistant)|
4. Tech-Life BoomBand Waterproof Wearable Bluetooth Speaker
Best Extra Loud Wrist Speaker
This speaker offers volumes more than twice as loud as traditional smartphone speakers, so despite wearing it further from your ears, you’ll definitely be able to hear it.
It has IPX6 certification, which means it’s functionally waterproof and can be used in almost any situation. Reviewers note that it has excellent sound quality and works well even with bass-heavy electronic music.
|Sound||High-volume, high-quality audio processors|
|Battery Life||10 hours play|
|Water Resistance||IPX6 (waterproof)|
5. Osten Design Bluetooth Headphones Speaker
Best for Background Noise-Free Phone Calls
This speaker doubles as wireless Bluetooth earbuds and allows you to easily switch between the two. It works fantastically for phone calls and reliably filters out background noise so that whoever you’re talking to can easily hear you.
Reviewers note that this speaker is quite a bit larger than expected, which might make it a little unwieldy for workouts. However, they also write that sound quality and battery life are great.
|Sound||Dimensional surround sound|
|Battery Life||10 hours|
|Water Resistance||IPX4 (sweat and moisture resistant)|
6. BlackBerry Mini Bluetooth Speaker
Best Lightweight Clip-On Speaker
This speaker attaches snugly to your collar or bag strap and holds tight enough even for running. It’s lightweight and easy to put on, but do note that it might make you look like you’re wearing a bar of soap.
Reviewers write that the sound quality is impressive for its size and price, although it probably isn’t loud enough to attach to anything beyond your upper torso.
|Battery Life||2 hours play|
7. Groovx VR Bluetooth Wearable Speaker with Microphone
Best for 360º Surround Sound
Unlike most speakers whose sound is localized directly under your ears, this speaker’s entire body emanates sound. It is ergonomically shaped and sits on your shoulders comfortably.
However, because it’s all speaker, it’s completely rigid and might not fit those with larger necks. It’s also on the heavier side, which could be uncomfortable for workouts.
|Sound||True stereo sound, 360º surround sound|
|Battery Life||5 hours play|
8. OriDecor Wireless Wearable Sports Speaker
Best Affordable Wrist Speaker
This wearable speaker is solidly built and comfortable to wear. Although it doesn’t have the highest quality sound, it’s decently clear and has an impressive volume range.
However, it’s quite bulky (far larger than a standard watch), and some reviewers complain that its large size doesn’t match up with its sound quality and battery life.
|Battery Life||2 hours|
9. Tokk Smart Hands-Free Bluetooth Speaker
Best Lightweight Speaker for Use at Relatively Low Volumes
This speaker magnetically clips or hooks onto anything you’re wearing and holds on well enough to exercise with. It’s super lightweight, and you hardly notice that you’re wearing it. It also charges completely in about half an hour.
However, reviewers note that the sound quality and volume leave much to be desired and that the louder you play it, the more distorted the sound can become.
|Battery Life||4 hours play|
10. Polk Audio BITE-A Boom Bit
Best for Quick Bursts of Listening
This little clip-on speaker offers decent sound quality and volume for its size. It comes in five different colors and features easy to use controls.
However, reviewers note that its battery life can be quite different depending on playback volume ranging from about 1 hour of play to upwards of 3. Luckily, the USB charger is built into the speaker, which makes for fairly simple recharging.
|Battery Life||2 hours|
|Water Resistance||Water resistant|
How to Choose a Wearable Speaker – Buying Guide
Finding the right speaker for you is largely about figuring out how you’ll use it and what matters most to you.
Where to Wear Depends on Comfort and the Activity
One of the first things you want to do is match the speaker to the activity.
Neck Speakers Are the Best for Activities with Lots of Movement
Speakers that rest around your neck provide you with steady sound no matter how much you’re moving, which makes it great for activities such as running or cleaning. On the other hand, it may be uncomfortable to wear if you’re doing large shoulder movements.
Wrist Speakers Are Good for Biking and More Static Activities
If wearing speakers around your neck causes discomfort, you might want to look into a wrist speaker that wears like a watch. These speakers can be a little bulkier than a standard watch, and it could get annoying to hear the sound fade in and out as you move your arms, so they’re best for activities where your arms are more stable such as biking or crafting.
Clip-On Speakers Are Versatile
Another option is clip-on speakers that attach to your clothing. These speakers are extremely versatile, as you can attach them to you or anything around you. Just note that depending on where you decide to wear it on your clothing, it might tug in a way that isn’t very comfortable—pulling down on your shirt collar, for example.
Look into Sound Quality, but Don’t be Fooled by All Those Fancy Tech Terms
To be honest, unless you’re an audio technician, it’s going to be near impossible to judge for audio quality just by looking at specs (plus, most brands don’t go into much detail).
Generally speaking, bigger drivers deliver punchier bass, whereas more speakers or channels deliver surround sound and give the illusion of space (you can, for example, “hear” that the guitarist was standing to the right of the bassist). Most wearable speakers are stereo sound with just two channels, left and right.
These, however, are generalizations, and many brands will have patented technologies intended to improve sound quality, so look at the numbers, decipher what you can, but take them with a grain of salt. And compare against customer reviews.
Many wearable speakers also give up huge drivers and complicated sound systems in favor of a streamlined design that’ll be light and comfortable to wear. Wearable speakers are usually anywhere between 2 ounces to over half a pound.
Pay Attention Battery Life (Including Standby)
A longer battery life is almost always better. After all, having your music cut off right while you’re in the middle of something is a total bummer. But longer battery life means larger batteries and heavier, bulkier speakers.
For a nice middle ground, look for a speaker with about a 10-hour battery. This will give you enough power to last at least one day of wear (likely multiple) as well as keep your device nice and light.
If you don’t plan on using your speaker every day or if you find yourself pausing and playing on a regular basis, it’s also a good idea to check for standby time.
For Exercising or Outdoor Use, Look for IPX4 Water Resistance
One of the main reasons people use wearable speakers is for physical activity. So it would be a real shame if a little sweat shorted it out. To prevent disappointment, look for a speaker that has at least IPX4 water resistance, which protects against sweat and weather-based moisture (though you’d still want to cover it up in the case of a torrential downpour).
Portable speakers offer you the ability to listen to both music and your surroundings, which can be really helpful in situations ranging from exercise to housework. Finding one that works with your lifestyle can offer a huge improvement in safety and convenience.
By Jacqueline Oshiro
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