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A couple great Bluetooth speakers sit outdoors against a lovely backdrop of green trees Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The Best Portable Bluetooth Speakers Under $50 of 2022

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A couple great Bluetooth speakers sit outdoors against a lovely backdrop of green trees Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

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Editor's Choice Product image of Anker Soundcore 2
Best Overall

Anker Soundcore 2

Anker's basic, straightforward, and useful Soundcore 2 offers very good sound for the money, alongside great weatherproofing, and easy portability Read More

Pros

  • Easy, intuitive setup
  • Very portable
  • Crazy-good battery life

Cons

  • Doesn't get super loud
Editor's Choice Product image of Anker Soundcore

Anker Soundcore

The original SoundCore doesn't really have any bells or whistles, but it comes in three different colors and has all the sound you're likely to need. Read More

Pros

  • 24-hour battery life
  • Good sound quality and plenty of volume
  • Large, easy-to-press buttons

Cons

  • Could be more impact-resistant
Product image of JBL Clip 3

JBL Clip 3

The Clip 3 is a handy waterproof speaker with surprisingly good sound quality. It isn't super loud, but it makes up for it elsewhere. Read More

Pros

  • Surprisingly big sound
  • Clip for easy, convenient hanging
  • Free of distortion

Cons

  • Sound is aimed skyward when clipped onto something
Product image of OontZ Angle 3

OontZ Angle 3

The Oontz Angle 3 boasts a clean, tasteful design and solid sound quality. Its triangular shape, however, means it works best for smaller spaces. Read More

Pros

  • Minimalist triangular design
  • Available in a variety of colors
  • Warm, full-bodied sound

Cons

  • Limited directionality
Product image of Tribit XSound Go

Tribit XSound Go

This tiny speaker isn't the loudest, and it projects sound in just one direction, but the quality is undeniable. It comes in blue and black versions. Read More

Pros

  • Sturdy metal chassis
  • User-friendly buttons

Cons

  • Not all that loud

If you need a way to pump up the jam when you're on the go, portable Bluetooth speakers—small enough to throw in a bag or backpack (or even strap to a belt or shower rod), but large enough to make music sound great—have quickly become a household commodity. In fact, there are so many thousands of portable Bluetooth speakers, even just on Amazon, that parsing through them all is an almost impossible task.

But luckily for you, we did most of the work already. While we didn't quite send all of Amazon's 40,000 Bluetooth speakers through the lab, we've tangoed with dozens of little music makers. Not only are there a lot of really awesome portable Bluetooth speakers out there, but there are plenty affordable ones.

Editor's Note

The recommendations in this guide are based on thorough product and market research by our team of expert product reviewers. The picks are based on examining user reviews, product specifications, and, in some limited cases, our experience with the specific products named.

Best Overall
Anker Soundcore 2

Our favorite affordable option in Anker's Soundcore portable speaker line, the SoundCore 2 is basic, straightforward, and useful. It features a sturdy rectangular design with big, easy-to-push buttons and a very tightly sealed set of inputs for USB charging and a 3.5 input.

The first thing we noticed about the SoundCore 2 was its sound quality. For being small, portable, and fairly lightweight, it has less tinniness in its trebles than a lot of portable Bluetooth speakers and more bass presence. Between the low price point and the wide array of colors, it's a very clear value pick as far as portable speakers go. It doesn't get majorly loud, but it gets about as loud as most people will probably need it to, and all without a touch of distortion.

Last but definitely not least, the Anker SoundCore 2 has an IPX7 water-resistance rating, meaning it can sit in up to a meter of water for 30 minutes, and it's capable of taking a dunk in the pool with no ill effects—exactly what you want here.

Pros

  • Easy, intuitive setup

  • Very portable

  • Crazy-good battery life

Cons

  • Doesn't get super loud

Product image of Anker Soundcore
Anker Soundcore

There's not much reason not to pick the Anker SoundCore if you're just looking for something simple and reliable. One of the most popular Bluetooth speakers of all time, this affordable product may not have any overt quirks, gimmicks, or standout features, but it checks off all the basic boxes for a price that's hard to argue with.

Available in black, blue, and red, the original SoundCore boasts 24 hours of battery life, a sturdy rectangular design, and big, easy-to-press buttons (although they can be a little hard to make out given that they're identically colored with the rest of the chassis). The sound quality is solid, with good bass and treble presence and plenty of volume.

Like the SoundCore 2, the original SoundCore has USB charging and an input for a 3.5mm jack. Unlike the upgraded SoundCore 2, however, the ports are uncovered, which is potentially problematic. Depending on how you plan on using the speaker this may or may not be a major issue—the speaker is still rated for IPX5 water resistance, meaning it can survive a rainy afternoon in the elements. But if you plan on taking your portable speaker on a lot of dusty outings or you think it may take a tumble in the pool, you may want to find one that's sealed up a little better.

Pros

  • 24-hour battery life

  • Good sound quality and plenty of volume

  • Large, easy-to-press buttons

Cons

  • Could be more impact-resistant

Product image of JBL Clip 3
JBL Clip 3

JBL's "Clip" line of portable Bluetooth speakers have been kicking around for years, and while they definitely break the mold where most Bluetooth speakers are concerned, they've got sticking power for a reason. The tiny Clip 3 is so named because it features a small partial carabiner clip for it to hang on various things—belt loops, bike handles, shower rods, and so on.

For being a tiny speaker, the Clip 3 has a pretty big sound. Even when its sitting on its backside unclipped (which oriented the drivers skyward ... not super ideal), it fills space and plays back cleanly without distortion. That said, the maximum volume isn't much, and there's also not a ton of bass, so if you're going for sheer power, you may want to consider stepping up to the upgraded JBL Clip 4, or one of our other picks instead.

For the price, however, the Clip 3 is great. At max volume, it puts out more sound than you might expect, and it's perfect for shower tunes or taking podcasts on the road. It's also available in a huge variety of colors, which is just downright fun. If you need a handy little speaker that's waterproof, the IPX7-rated Clip 3 is a fine option.

Pros

  • Surprisingly big sound

  • Clip for easy, convenient hanging

  • Free of distortion

Cons

  • Sound is aimed skyward when clipped onto something

Product image of OontZ Angle 3
OontZ Angle 3

The 3rd generation of the "Angle" Bluetooth speaker, you can pick this simple, portable triangle speaker in a wide range of colors (black, blue, red, white, and even "Coca-Cola"). Like the other Angle speakers (and the smaller Angle solo), it features a clean, minimalist design, with materials that avoid that "very cheap" feeling of many Bluetooth speakers in this price range.

The main thing to understand about the Angle speakers (almost regardless of which one you buy) is that they're inherently focused on their sound output. While most of the portable Bluetooth speakers we check out fire in one direction, the Angles are especially directional. This makes them good for isolating sound to a particular space, but not good for situations where you'd want the sound to radiate throughout an area.

With that in mind, the Angle 3 is great for a desktop situation, and it sounds pretty good too. The downward-firing bass speaker provides good warmth within the lower and midrange areas of the frequency spectrum. However, while its IPX5 water-resistance rating means its good for heavy rain, there are better poolside options out there.

Pros

  • Minimalist triangular design

  • Available in a variety of colors

  • Warm, full-bodied sound

Cons

  • Limited directionality

Product image of Tribit XSound Go
Tribit XSound Go

The Tribit XSound Go is definitely a step up from the average portable Bluetooth speaker. The XSound Go isn't the biggest or the loudest option in the lineup, but considering the fact that there's an upgraded "MaxSound Go," you can find it on sale pretty readily.

Despite being a bit older, the XSound Go is still worth checking out. Its small form factor feels very sturdy thanks to the metal chassis. The buttons along the top are simple and clearly labeled. Like most Bluetooth speakers, you can't skip tracks using the volume buttons, but there is a big "play" (pause) button. The XSound Go is cool to the touch and features a braided wrist strap, though in our testing it seemed clear you wouldn't want to get too rambunctious with it.

As for the sound, despite its little size, the Go has a good amount of power, but you kind of have to turn it up a lot. Its firm build means it won't vibrate or distort easily, but it also only articulates sound in one direction, meaning it's probably better for a stationary activity than hanging off of someone's bike during a trail ride. That said, it's ready for the elements (and a dunk in the sink or pool) with IPX7 water resistance. It's available in basic black and a darker blue color.

Pros

  • Sturdy metal chassis

  • User-friendly buttons

Cons

  • Not all that loud

Product image of OontZ Angle Solo
OontZ Angle Solo

This speaker in the Oontz "Angle" line (actually by Cambridge Soundworks) is another big hit on Amazon. The Angle Solo is a small, very affordable Bluetooth speaker that gets its name from the speaker's triangular shape.

This one's inexpensive, but it feels sturdy and well made, featuring rounded black plastic and a logo-emblazoned speaker grill. Something about it looks really perfect on your desk: the way it sits, angling its speaker upwards towards a listener who is seated at a table. Because it's one of the smaller speakers in the roundup, the Angle solo isn't particularly loud or robust, but it's designed well enough to deliver clean, distortion-free sound even at higher volumes.

The Angle Solo isn't big enough to fill a space with music (in fact, it's small enough to have slots for attaching it to a keychain), but it's a good choice for a desktop or picnic table situation. Maybe not party-ready, but it can take on the weather with its IPX5 water resistance rating, and it could bring the funk to a more intimate gathering.

Pros

  • Sturdy, balanced design

  • Distortion-free sound

Cons

  • It's not all that loud

Product image of Doss SoundBox Touch
Doss SoundBox Touch

The Doss Touch is a decent choice, especially if you're on a budget. It's a larger speaker with very robust sound for the price: not the highest quality, but at least pretty loud. While it's not fully waterproof—and can't be dunked—like most speakers these days, it offers IPX5 water resistance to allow you to leave it a heavy rain with no ill effects.

The Touch's big rectangular black plastic chassis isn't going to win any design awards, but it does put out some big sound. In fact, it's one of the louder, clearer, and better-sounding devices in this price range that we tested. You can adjust the volume by running your finger clockwise or counter-clockwise around the blue circle on top of the Touch, and skip forward/backward through tracks with the arrow keys. It's a simple enough system, and the light-up buttons look a bit chintzy, but it works.

If we were recommending speakers to a friend, we'd tell them to go for a slightly nicer speaker with a better design, more detailed sound, and more features. But if you want to shave down costs, the Doss Touch sounds bigger than you'd expect for the price.

Pros

  • Large, full-bodied sound

  • Easy-to-use controls

Cons

  • Design is a bit awkward

  • Could be more durable

Product image of Zosam V5
Zosam V5

When we first booted up the Zosam V5, a robotic voice from the PlayStation era informed us that "The device is ready for connection." Once we'd synced up a phone it announced "Connected," and we knew everything was going to be alright.

Silliness of presentation aside, the Zosam V5 isn't a bad choice, though it has some serious eccentricities. On top of the weird announcer voice, its textured, hard plastic chassis makes it feel more like an '80s action figure than a modern recreation product. The matte black-on-gray aesthetic really hammers that home, too. In fact, on Amazon, the available colors are "black" and "black2." Point made.

The V5 sounds ok—though at times elements of the frequency seem "further away" than they do in higher-quality speakers and headphones. Likewise, at higher volumes, the front-facing speaker (which handles treble/mids) seems to outpace the rear speaker a bit in terms of volume. While the IPX6 water-resistance rating makes it pretty weather-resistant, the plastic also feels a bit cheap. The V5 isn't overpriced, but you can probably do better in this price range.

Pros

  • Quirky retro aesthetic

Cons

  • Feels a little cheap

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Meet the tester

Lee Neikirk

Lee Neikirk

Editor, Home Theater

@Koanshark

Lee has been Reviewed's point person for most television and home theater products since 2012. Lee received Level II certification in TV calibration from the Imaging Science Foundation in 2013. As Editor of the Home Theater vertical, Lee oversees reviews of TVs, monitors, soundbars, and Bluetooth speakers. He also reviews headphones, and has a background in music performance.

See all of Lee Neikirk's reviews

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