Break Out the Sound: Best Speakers for Tailgating

Tailgating is about more than good food, good friends, and good beer. That might be all that some people are looking for, but for others, a tailgating party is an all-day event. They want generators, refrigerators, and a big screen for the pregame show. They may require tents to stay safe from the elements, without interrupting the ongoing festivities. There’s music and dancing, and who knows what else—and, as the old saying goes, you want the right tools for the right job. Whether you’re broadcasting music or TV to a sizable group of people, you’ll want some good outdoor speakers to convey that sound to everybody!

This is especially true if you couldn’t get seats for the game; in a growing trend, people are hosting tailgating parties in their own front yards. This makes for a more frequent and convenient get-together for those who can’t afford to attend every game. But what speakers will best fit your needs? Well, that depends upon what kind of party you’re hosting; here are a few suggestions to get you started.

If the base is droppin’, get that party poppin’ with IGIDIA’s IPX5 waterproof portable wireless Bluetooth speakers, for shower and outdoor use.

#1: IGIDIA IPX5 Waterproof Portable Bluetooth Speakers, Outdoor/Shower Wireless Speaker with Enhanced Bass (Link)

These bad boys have a lot to say for them. The IPX5 speakers from IGIDIA offer crystal-clear sound via a wireless, Bluetooth-enabled connection that allows them to find everything from your laptop computer, to your smartphone, to the stereo system in your truck. Wherever you want the sound to come from, these speakers will channel it—they take only seconds to connect to other Bluetooth-compatible devices. They’re designed for outdoor use, and they deliver loud volume and heavy base suited to a small to mid-size tailgating event. Water-resistant, small, and highly portable, they also offer many uses once the party is over; they’re effective shower speakers, and they even include a built-in mic for hands-free phone calls.

Now for the Cons

While affordable, there are more affordable options available for the many other uses that IGIDIA’s IPX5 speakers offer. Their value lies mostly in their flexibility, meaning that—if you aren’t going to get a lot of everyday use out of them—these might not be the best speakers for you. For a modest tailgating event, however, the sound they pump out is loud and clear, and it doesn’t carry particularly far (an advantage, unless you’re hosting a particularly large party). Also, while some speakers last up to 24 hours on a single charge, these only go for about 8 due to the increased demands of their high audio performance.

If you’re looking for something to suit any size gathering, and you’re not too concerned about everyday use, try out these next affordable favorites: the 100W 3-way indoor/outdoor Dual LU43PW paired speakers.

#2: Dual LU43PW 100 Watt 3-way Indoor/Outdoor Speakers in White (Link)

Dual Electronics offers the LU43PW model in multiple colors. They aren’t quite on the same level of convenient portability as the IPX5, but they’re close, and what’s a few extra minutes of setting up in return for the perfect sound? The LU43PW speakers offer loud, dynamic sound in a multi-directional format, simulating the performance of a surround sound system built into your own living room at home. They can be mounted in place, offering a 120-degree rotation on their built-in pivot, or they can be set up temporarily in virtually any location. Outdoor performance is assured via their weather-resistant construction.

Now for the Cons

It can take some experimentation to get the right sound that you’re looking for. Indoors, room acoustics affect the sound quality; outside, they need to be coordinated relative to each other to produce the exact effect—and optimal placement can change, depending upon the size of the area you need to cover. With that aside, these are highly affordable speakers which offer the range and the power to satisfy the needs of even a large and active get-together.

Are you interested in something a little more high-powered? Most people won’t need it, but for a particularly large gathering, you might want to consider the Atrium 4 outdoor speakers from Polk Audio. Y’know… if you want military-industrial quality.

We’re not kidding.

#3: Polk Audio Atrium 4 Outdoor Speakers (Link)

The Atrium 4 speakers from Polk Audio come in a pair, and aren’t particularly pricey, though for the cost you could have two or three sets of either of the preceding options on our list. What makes these stand out? In a word, performance. In another word, durability. Polk’s speakers are designed to be permanent outdoor installations, and they exceed both military and industrial minimum standards for outdoor electronics in terms of overall durability and weather-resistance. The sound quality, meanwhile, is spectacular: they are designed to cover a broad area with full, rich sound at little to no loss of audio detail. The speakers install in minutes, with a five-year warranty on parts and labor (professional mounting services are available).

Now for the Cons

Relative to the other speakers on this list, Polk Audio’s Atrium 4 models cost a little more. They’re also meant to be permanently installed, are not suitable for indoor use, and draw more power than either of the preceding models. In general, they aren’t suitable for small gatherings or get-togethers, but—for a large event, hosted at your own home (or anywhere else where you could conceivably mount the speakers)—these won’t be an easy option to beat, as hundreds of existing purchasers will confirm!

One Last Note

Make sure that you review the product specifications and usage instructions for every piece of outdoor equipment you use, as well as for any generator or power inverter to which it is connected. Improper use of such equipment can result in injury, although it is statistically more likely to simply ruin the items themselves—a potential loss of hundreds of dollars, and a premature end to the party. Have fun, but stay safe; used properly, outdoor electronics can last through years of frequent use, and provide countless hours of fun for afternoon, all-day, and weekend tailgating events.

Be responsible, have a good time, and don’t forget the Ultimate Tailgating Guide for all your tailgating needs!