What is the best portable speaker system for the Ipad?

There are many portable speakers on the market these days, with more coming along all the time. The aim of this site is to document and review as many as possible, and to make it easier for you the buyer, to choose from the myriad of choices.

To help with this task, I have created a comparison table below which lists current popular speakers with price ranging from the cheap end to the expensive end.

Comparison Table of Portable speaker systems for the Ipad

Ipad Speakers
Dim.
Ins
Weight
Battery
Life
Wireless
Rating
(out of 5)
Bang & Olufsen Beolit 12
7.5 x 5.3 x 96.2 lbs8 hours wired, 4 hours airplayAirplay4




Click for more specs
Bose Companion 2 Series III Multimedia Speakers
5.9x 3.1x 7.54.4 lbsno batteryNo4



Click for more specs
Bose SoundLink Mini
2.3 x 7.1 x 21.5 lbs7 hoursBluetooth5



Click for more specs..
Chill Pill Mobile Speakers
3.0 x 1.2 x 46.4 oz6 hoursNo3



Click for more specs..
Geneva Sound MODEL XS DAB+
6.2 x 1.8 x 3.71 lb5 hoursBluetooth3.5



Click for more specs..
House of Marley Chant Bluetooth
5.9 x 4.4 x 4.420.8 oz6 hoursBluetooth4.5



Click for more specs..
iLuv iSP245 Mo' Beats
3.0 x 1.8 x 9.61.2lbsunknownBluetooth4



Click for more specs
iLuv MobiOut iSP 233
7.2 x 1.9 x 2.7 12.6 oz9 hoursBluetooth4



Click for more specs..
Jabra SOLEMATE
7.3 x 5.1 x 3.22.4 lbs8 hoursBluetooth4.5



Click for more specs..
Jawbone JAMBOX
6 x 1.6 x 2.812 oz10 hoursBluetooth4



Click for more specs..
KitSound Hive
1.9 x 2.5 x 6.53.5 oz10 hoursBluetooth5



Click for more specs..
Libratone LIBRATONE ZIPP
10.2 x 4.84 lbs8 hoursAirplay5



Click for more specs..
Logitech UE BOOM
2.7 x 2.7 x 7.11.2 lbs15 hours4.5



Click for more specs..
Native Union SWITCH
4 x 3 x 101lb14 hoursBluetooth4.5



Click for more specs..
Philips P8 Fidelio
11.3 x 2.5 x 53 lbs8 hoursBluetooth4



Click for more specs..
Sony Ericsson MS430
4.3x 1.2x 1.22.4 oz12 hoursNo3.5



Click for more specs..
SuperTooth Disco2
7.1 x 3.9 x 3.919.8 ozno batteryBluetooth4.5



Click for more specs..
* Price may vary to the stated amount

Explanation of terms in the table:

  • Name and Model of Speaker (Click to buy or see more details)
  • Dimensions in inches
  • Weight unboxed of the speaker in ounces or pounds
  • Power source varies between built in rechargeable battery to AC / DC power adapter
  • The maximum length of time the battery will last in hours
  • The inputs and outputs of the speaker
  • The type of wireless connectivity, Bluetooth or Airplay
  • The listed price of the product at the time of writing, take this value with a pinch of salt as the price will vary depending on discounts or promotions that will take place
  • Colors available for that model
  • Features and what comes with the speaker

What is a Wireless Portable Speaker Exactly?

It is basically that in a nutshell, a small speaker or speakers that can be used with a variety of Electronic devices to enhance the sound output of that particular device without having to physically connect with it. In other words using a wireless protocol like Bluetooth or Apples Airplay to connect to it.

Typical devices that connect to wireless speakers are Smart phones such as the Iphone range, and Android Phones, Ipads, Laptops, PC’s in fact any device with Bluetooth or Airplay capabilities.

If your device isn’t Bluetooth enabled (Like my PC for example) then you can buy a Bluetooth dongle which typically plugs into a USB port and will enable Bluetooth connectivity.

 

A portable wireless bluetooth speaker

A portable wireless bluetooth speaker

How do I connect to a Wireless Speaker?

On your device somewhere will be a “Settings” icon and in there you will find “Wireless settings” or something similar. In there you will find “Bluetooth settings”. Firstly, make sure Bluetooth is enabled. Then you need to have your Speaker switched on in Bluetooth mode. Then you can scan or search for devices within your Bluetooth settings on your device.

The speaker will have a name as per the instructions that come with the speaker, normally this is the make or model of the speaker. When it appears on the device, then you need to connect to the speaker – this is called “pairing”. Once the speaker is paired with your device it usually emits a tone or sound that indicates that the connection has been successful.

You can only connect to one speaker at once, unless you have speakers that can connect to each other which is a feature in the higher end of the speaker range. Once paired, then you can start your playlist or whatever you wish to play. Volume is handled on the device and on some speakers there is also a separate volume control, and also the ability to skip to the next track or back to the previous track.

If you have a phone connected to the speaker, some have the ability to mute the music automatically when a call is made to the phone and then you can talk normally using the microphone built into the speaker or the phone normally.

how to connect to bluetooth with the ipad

Make sure bluetooth is on and select it

Pairing with a bluetooth speaker with the Ipad

Your device should appear and say “connected’

 

What types of Portable speakers are there?

The majority of Portable wireless speakers will operate with Bluetooth technology. Bluetooth is a wireless protocol which has been around for a while now and is a great boon for wirelessly connecting devices. You can read about Bluetooth technology in more depth here

There are other wireless streaming technologies such as Apples Airplay which serve basically the same function as Bluetooth.

Most Wireless speakers will have just one unit which produces the sound. In general the sound quality will get better the higher the cost of the speaker, and some speakers will have the ability to connect to another speaker of the same model in order to create stereo.

The shapes of the speakers vary considerably, as well as the color and design. You can get great looking speakers – some are oblong, some cylindrical  and all the shapes in between. The weights vary from a few ounces to 2 or 3 pounds.

The more expensive speakers will give more functionality as well than the basic types of speaker. Most speakers contain a rechargeable battery that is usually built into the device and cannot be replaced. This is usually charged with a Micro USB cable that is normally supplied with the unit.

Other features include a built in microphone, the ability to plug in a micro SD card, vibration speakers for extra bass, a platform that the speaker rests on that charges the battery in the speaker wirelessly, to mention just a few. There are reviews for individual speakers on this site.

Wireless bluetooth speakers for the IPad

Typical Wireless Bluetooth Speakers with controls and inputs / outputs shown

Why would I want a Wireless Portable Speaker ?

There are a number of reasons why a Wireless speaker or speakers would be advantageous, they are listed below:

  • Less Wires around your house
  • No need for another DC power supply clogging up your power board
  • Provide an Audio boost for devices with built in low quality speakers
  • The ability for one speaker to be used with multiple devices
  • Higher quality speakers are great for Parties, especially an outdoor event where power may not be readily available
  • Great to take on camping trips or fishing trips etc. where again you necessarily have a power source
  • A fashionable item to show off to your friends !
  • You can pay from around $30 to hundreds of dollars, so there will be a speaker for everyones requirements

There are probably a few more reasons, but those are a great start for anyone thinking of buying one of these speakers.

Which is the Best Portable Speaker for my needs?

So now which is the speaker best suited for you? There are a number of criteria to take into account and there are reviews on this site that can help you to decide which one is your choice.

  • Price
  • Design of the speaker
  • Quality of sound of the speaker
  • Portable or a more permanent fixture
  • Functions of the speaker that suit your needs (extra battery life for example)
  • Size and Weight of the speaker

Ok, to go into more detail, Price and Quality usually go hand in hand, so the higher end systems such as Bose speakers will tend to give you better sound quality as well as design and functions.

Sound quality is probably a major factor for most people when they buy one of these, the smaller speakers will sound more tinny because usually they only have one loudspeaker incorporated into the device so the range of frequencies is limited. Larger speakers can have two or more loudspeakers built in improving the frequency range and hence the quality.

Some speakers have amazing designs and colors, so you might fall in love with a particular design of a speaker even though it may not be top of the line with other features.

With size and weight, then it depends on whether you will be travelling a lot with the speaker in which case you would want a smaller more robust type of speaker, even a waterproof one. If the speaker is going to spend its time mostly in your house then a larger more permanent type of speaker would be better.

Of the many functions of these types of speakers, one particular one may grab you and you decide that speaker is for you. For example the ability to plug in an SD card or long battery life could be deciding factors.

Conclusion

If you are new to the Portable Wireless Speaker Market I hope this site helps you to decide which is the best portable speaker that suits you. I will be adding reviews of speakers on a regular basis as more speakers come on to the market all the time. Happy reading !

If you have any questions or would like to see a particular speaker reviewed, just leave a comment below !

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