Looking for a great affordable speaker to take on holiday or for summer sounds at home? Here are some of the best options available from top brands including Bose, Samsung, JBL and Sony.
If you’re searching for the ideal compact speaker for your travels or the campsite, we’ve got you covered with three great-looking durable options. One of the bunch has Alexa voice control, and there’s a more traditional speaker from Bose that comes in a travel-friendly size.
And if you want to enjoy some relaxing summer listening at home, we’ve selected two great affordable home wireless speakers. Click on the links to our reviews below to see whether these picks will give you great sound and are easy to use.
Best Buy wireless speakers – see our full list of top recommendations.
Portable wireless speakers
Bose SoundLink Mini Bluetooth speaker II, £150
The second-generation SoundLink Mini strives to condense impressive sound into a compact, travel-friendly size. Bose aims to improve the battery life as well, all in a package little heavier than a 500ml drinks bottle.
A multifunction button allows you to play, pause and skip tracks, and there’s a mic too. iPhone users can hold down this button to activate Siri’s voice-dial function to make calls without having to get out your phone.
See whether Bose delivers its signature sound in ultra-compact form in our expert Bose SoundLink Mini Bluetooth speaker II review.
JBL Flip 3, £69
A real crowd-pleaser, the JBL Flip 3 offers the ideal campsite-friendly splashproof design at a tempting price. There’s also the added fun of seeing the bass bounce at either end of its can-sized cylindrical body.
It has a built-in mic for taking calls, and it can even be rinsed under a tap if it gets muddy. It’s lightweight, too – ideal for putting in your backpack.
Small speakers do often underperform in the bass stakes. See whether this speaker is an exception in our JBL Flip 3 review.
Sony SRS-X11, £30
If you like to travel light or have little room in your bag, the Sony SRS-X11 could be the ideal companion. It’s one of the smallest Bluetooth speakers we’ve tested and is available in a range of colours to suit your preferences, from bright red to white.
You can even connect NFC-enabled devices simply by touching them to the speaker, and there’s a mic for taking hands-free calls.
See if this little speaker has impressive sound in our definitive Sony SRS-X11 review.
Ultimate Ears Boom 2, £80
In a bigger form than some other speakers shown here, the Ultimate Ears Boom 2 also packs more features.
It’s fully water, dirt and shockproof so will survive rough treatment, and is available in a wide variety of bright colours, from pink and red to orange and purple. One-touch connection is supported for NFC-enabled devices and it features a big battery as well.
Read our verdict on the sound and fill up on our independent battery tests in our Ultimate Ears Boom 2 review.
Ultimate Ears Megablast, £161
The Megablast packs powerful sound for festivals and campsites or for using around your home.
This highly durable speaker is waterproof and dustproof, rated IP67. The maximum volume of 93dB is comparable to that of a powerful lawn mower, all in a speaker the size of roughly two drinks cans. Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant is supported for hands-free control and additional features as well, when in range of wi-fi.
Check out our thoughts in our extensive Ultimate Ears Megablast review.
Home wireless speakers
B&O BeoPlay S3, £185
If you’re looking for a more traditional speaker with plug-and-play simplicity this summer, the B&O BeoPlay S3 Bluetooth wireless speaker might be just the ticket.
The striking looks and small size make it the ideal speaker to fit anywhere in your home or put in your greenhouse or shed – provided you’re within reach of a plug socket, as it’s mains-powered only.
The fabric grille is detachable and can be replaced in a number of different colours, so you don’t have to worry too much about damaging it. And it’s designed to be simple to use, with one button controlling power and Bluetooth pairing and just volume buttons either side.
See what our expert listening panel thought of the sound of this simple speaker in our in-depth B&O BeoPlay S3 review.
Samsung R1, £89
This is the smallest speaker in Samsung’s R speaker range. You can connect the R1 via Bluetooth or wi-fi, and its cylindrical design aims to spread sound equally throughout the room. We put this to the test to see whether it delivers.
Touch controls on top of the speaker allow you to control music, and multiroom support is provided via an app to connect multiple speakers in the range.
See what we thought of the R1’s sound and features in our comprehensive Samsung R1 review.