8 Best Outdoor Rock Speakers Reviewed in 2020 ( Bluetooth, For Audiophiles)

stone speaker in the garden

Love of the outdoors is not limited to venturing into the untamed wild to hike, hunt, fish, or photograph animals.

Many people enjoy a more civilized outdoor experience in their own yards.

Now, the outside often lacks many of the modern contrivances we all appreciate. Music is one of those.

Sure, you can bring a small outdoor radio, but that’s weak and provides only one sound source.

What if you want to throw an outdoor party or relax in a garden without worrying about a little bit of rain ruining your expensive audio equipment?

That’s where rock speakers come into play.

Generally shaped like stones, these speakers blend into your landscape while providing the audio capability you need to provide the music you need to relax outdoors or throw a dance party under the stars.

You can use them to scare off the neighborhood kids, too!

 

The 8 Best Rock Speakers of 2019: Outdoor Empire Recommendations

  1. Best Cheap: Theater Solutions 2R4 Outdoor Lava
  2. Best for the Money: Theater Solutions 2R8 Outdoor Granite
  3. Best Rechargeable: Innovative Technology Premium
  4. Best In-Ground: Bose Free Space 51
  5. Most Powerful: OSD Audio RS850
  6. Best Bluetooth: Sound Appeal Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speaker
  7. Best-Sounding for Audiophiles: Klipsch AWR-650-SM
  8. Best Solar-Powered: Alpine Corporation Wireless Speaker

 

CategoryBest cheapBest for the moneyMost powerful
ProductTheater Solutions 2R4 Outdoor Lava
Theater Solutions 2R4 Outdoor Lava

 Theater Solutions 2R8 Outdoor Granite
Theater Solutions 2R8 Outdoor Granite

OSD Audio RS850
OSD Audio RS850

Max Power125 watts250 watts200 watts
Sensitivity94 dB97 dB88 dB
Impedance8 ohm8 ohm8 ohm
Speaker Size4.5 inches8 inches8 inches
Styles- Granite
- Lava
- Sandstone
- Granite
- Lava
- Sandstone
- Canyon Brown
- Granite Grey
CostCheck PriceCheck Price

 

1. Best Cheap Rock Speakers: Theater Solutions 2R4 Outdoor Lava Rock 2 Speaker Set

Theater Solutions 2R4 Outdoor Lava Rock 2 Speaker Set

  • Styles: Granite, Lava, Sandstone
  • Max Power: 125 watts
  • Sensitivity: 94 dB
  • Impedance: 8 ohm
  • Frequency Response: 80 Hz to 20 kHz
  • Speaker Size: 4.5 inches
  • Driver Angle: 30 degrees
  • Connection: Wired

Overview

The Theater Solutions 2R4 speaker set is a set of two 4.5-inch poly mica woofers above small, soft dome tweeters.

Everything is sealed with butyl rubber or silicone so keep moisture and dust from getting to the sensitive electronics inside. Ferrofluid keeps them cool, too.

They are rated for temperatures up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit, so you’ll be able to leave them outside all summer.

The grills are rust resistant to protect the speakers from damage by unruly children or rocks kicked up by your lawn mower. They’re also angled up 20 degrees to project the sound upward.

Your ears are not on your feet, after all.

The audio quality is not top of the line, but it’s good enough for most people. Ten to 125 watts of power per speaker provides ample volume to harass your neighbors at any time of day.

You will need an audio receiver or amplifier to power these speakers. They’re not wireless, and you can’t just plug them into an electrical outlet.

Pros

  • Inexpensive
  • Set of two speakers
  • Two-way, which means woofers combined with tweeters

Cons

  • Some build-quality concerns

Recommendation

Theater Solutions 2R4 speakers may be cheap, but for the price you get two weather-resistant outdoor speakers with tweeters that are disguised as rocks.

 

2. Best Rock Speakers for the Money: Theater Solutions 2R8 Outdoor Granite 8″ Rock 2 Speaker Set

Theater Solutions 2R8 Outdoor Granite 8″ Rock 2 Speaker Set

  • Styles: Granite, Lava, Sandstone
  • Max Power: 250 watts
  • Sensitivity: 97 dB
  • Impedance: 8 ohm
  • Frequency Response: 50 Hz to 20 kHz
  • Speaker Size: 8 inches
  • Driver Angle: 20 degrees
  • Connection: Wired

Overview

The more powerful version of the 2R4L, the Theater Solutions 2R8G rock speakers are much louder but also have good audio quality.

They maintain many of their cheaper cousin’s strengths. However, they have a higher efficiency and a wider frequency response.

Also, they are twice as powerful because each individual speaker has an output power of up to 250 watts. The speaker is physically larger too, being 8 inches across instead of 4.5 inches.

These are for when you need an awful lot of speaker without spending an awful lot of money.

You still get a shell that emulates a stone of your choice while protecting the poly mica woofers and soft dome tweeters inside. The voice coils are sealed, too.

The sound voice is tuned for outdoor purposes, so you audiophiles who’ve tuned your equalizer to specific headphones may think something is off when you first try these. Try using a balanced option and go from there.

Also, they may need some burn-in time before they sound right.

Fair warning: these are hefty boys at eight pounds per speaker!

Pros

  • Powerful
  • Two speakers in the package

Cons

  • May need equalizing to sound right to some people
  • Powerful enough to blow themselves out

Recommendation

The Theater Solutions 2R8 rock speakers are a lot of speaker for not a lot of money, providing an excellent bang for your buck.

 

 

3. Best Rechargeable Rock Speakers: Innovative Technology Premium 5-Watt Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speakers

Innovative Technology Premium 5-Watt Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speakers

  • Styles: Charcoal, Tan
  • Max Power: 5 watts
  • Sensitivity: Not stated
  • Impedance: Not stated
  • Frequency Response: Not stated
  • Speaker Size: 3.5 inches
  • Driver Angle: Not stated
  • Connection: Bluetooth

Overview

Innovative Technology’s Premium 5-Watt Bluetooth Rock Speakers are truly wireless speakers. They have a maximum range of 33 feet.

Not only do they connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth, but they are also rechargeable. They have a 5200 mAh battery that can last for 10 hours when blasting at full volume!

However, that full volume is not nearly as loud as most other outdoor speakers because they have a paltry maximum power of 5 watts.

This is still more than powerful enough for smaller outdoor settings, though. Combined with the 3.5-inch speakers, you won’t be bursting anybody’s eardrums, though you may still get the police called on you if you play loud music at 3 a.m.

The batteries are charged using USB, which makes these rock speakers very easy to use.

Unfortunately, their audio specs aren’t even available in the manual. Most people will be fine with them, but people expecting the best sound will want to look elsewhere.

Also, the manual recommends not keeping them in direct sunlight. They can survive wet weather and people have reported leaving them out all day in summer, but the warning is there.

Pros

  • Bluetooth
  • Large rechargeable battery

Cons

  • Small driver and mediocre sound

Recommendation

Innovative Technology’s Premium 5-Watt Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speakers are small speakers that provide middling sound, but they are rechargeable and can make good travel speakers.

 

 

4. Best In-Ground Rock Speakers: Bose Free Space 51

Bose Free Space 51

  • Style: Green
  • Max Power: 100 watts
  • Sensitivity: Not stated
  • Impedance: 4 / 8 ohm
  • Frequency Response: Not stated
  • Speaker Size: 4.5 inches
  • Driver Angle: 360 degrees
  • Connection: Wired

Overview

Okay, so the Bose Free Space 51 isn’t shaped like a rock.

It still fulfills the function of rock speakers, which is to provide sound outside while blending into your landscaping.

The audio driver is located in a green plastic shell and face downward. The soundwaves reflect off the curved bottom, providing 360-degrees of sound.

They are designed for permanent installation outdoors and are built to withstand anything nature can throw at them. Humidity, rain, snow, and even salt fog won’t damage these speakers. Neither will temperature; they are rated from -40 degrees Fahrenheit to 158 degrees Fahrenheit.

And if your kids jump on them? They better not weigh more than 350 pounds, because that’s how much weight the Free Space 51s are designed to handle!

They can be partially buried in the ground or installed on hard surfaces by using the included mounting hardware.

I’m a little surprised Bose doesn’t publish the frequency response range of these speakers, but the audio quality is excellent.

Don’t forget that you’ll need to buy wire rated for direct burial. The manual has wire gauge recommendations, too.

Pros

  • Very good sound quality and coverage
  • Very tough construction

Cons

  • Expensive

Recommendation

If you want to hide speakers outdoors without them looking like a rock and want speakers that can survive hurricanes and provide high-quality sound, the Bose Free Space 51 speaker set is your choice.

 

 

5. Most Powerful Rock Speaker: OSD Audio RS850 8″ Stereo Outdoor Rock Speaker

OSD Audio RS850 8″ Stereo Outdoor Rock Speaker

  • Styles: Canyon Brown, Granite Grey
  • Max Power: 200 watts
  • Sensitivity: 88 dB
  • Impedance: 8 ohm
  • Frequency Response: 28 Hz to 20 kHz
  • Speaker Size: 8 inches
  • Driver Angle: Not stated
  • Connection: Wired

Overview

The OSD Audio RS850 is a very tall rock with an 8-inch wide polypropylene woofer and 1-inch polyamide dome tweeter.

There is some confusion as to whether this is a 200- or 300-watt speaker. The OSD website gives the RS850’s specs as you can see above, but the manual claims it’s a 300-watt speaker with a 20-Hz to 20-kHz frequency response and 91-dB sensitivity. Also, the manual says the tweeter is 2 inches, not 1 inch.

Either way, this speaker is the most powerful you can buy. Though some can claim more wattage, this one can function at that level without blowing itself out. The cabinet is designed to be acoustically inert, so you hear the speakers and nothing but the speakers.

Aerospace-grade composites keep the speaker safe from environmental hazards and unexpected hazards in your lawn, such as pool chemicals. The woofer’s voice coil is sealed, the tweeter is coaxially mounted, and both have silicone encased leads.

Oh, and the rock-style cabinet looks more rock-like than most rock speakers.

Like any wired speaker, you’ll need an amplifier to make these work. Three inches of wire is included, but you’ll surely need more.

Pros

  • Excellent audio quality
  • Extreme power

Cons

  • Disconnect between website and manual regarding specifications
  • Large and heavy

Recommendation

The OSD Audio RS850 is a very powerful rock speaker that does not give up audio or build quality to claim this throne.

 

 

6. Best Bluetooth Rock Speaker: Sound Appeal Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speaker

Sound Appeal Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speaker

  • Styles: Canyon Sandstone, Grey Slate
  • Max Power: 40 watts
  • Sensitivity: Not stated
  • Impedance: Not stated
  • Frequency Response: 35 Hz to 20 kHz
  • Speaker Size: 6.5 inches
  • Driver Angle: Not stated
  • Connection: Bluetooth

Overview

The Sound Appeal Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speaker, as you can guess by the name, is a Bluetooth-enabled outdoor speaker.

You can pair these speakers with your phone and use them to play music using your music player app. Sound Appeal claims you can use them from up to 100 feet away, but you might have to keep your device within 30 feet in practice.

However, while these speakers connect wirelessly, they are not truly wireless.

One of the speakers has an 8-foot power cord that plugs into a 110-volt outlet. Then there’s a 20-foot cord to connect the two speakers together.

They have a 40-watt, built-in amplifier. This isn’t the most powerful available, but it is more than powerful enough for pool parties or for listening to classic rock and roll during a cookout.

Also, these speakers can only pair with one Bluetooth device at a time. You’ll have to unpair them to allow someone else to play their music.

Finally, the power switch is on the bottom of the main speaker, which makes permanent installation difficult.

Pros

  • 100-foot range
  • Bluetooth

Cons

  • Not truly wireless
  • The power switch is on the bottom

Recommendation

Sound Appeal Bluetooth Outdoor Rock Speakers are a great choice when you want semi-permanent, semi-wireless outdoor speakers.

 

7. Best-Sounding Rock Speaker for Audiophiles: Klipsch AWR-650-SM

Klipsch AWR-650-SM

  • Styles: Granite, Sandstone
  • Max Power: 200 watts
  • Sensitivity: 94 dB
  • Impedance: 8 ohms
  • Frequency Response: 66 Hz to 20 Hz
  • Speaker Size: 6.5 inches
  • Driver Angle: Not stated
  • Connection: Wired

Overview

Almost everyone listens to music.

Some people pay special attention to the music they’re listening to and are especially sensitive to parts barely heard by other people and get enjoyment from this.

The Klipsch AWR-650-SM is aimed at these audiophiles. It has the highest audio quality of any rock speaker.

A good part of this is due to how it has not one but two tweeters in each speaker cabinet, allowing for a fuller range of sound and true stereo. It can be used mono too, though.

The dual voice coil polymer woofer is 6.5 inches, and the two-polymer dome tweeters are each 0.75 inches, which gives it a “true two-way design.”

The cabinet itself looks moderately like a stone, but more importantly, it’s durable enough to protect the high-quality speakers inside.

The additional audio capability requires running four underground wires, so installation is more complicated than with other rock speakers. If you have rock speakers already and want to upgrade, well, you’ll need to either run more wires or combine audio channels.

You can connect multiple of these speakers to your amplifier or receiver for even better surround sound.

Pros

  • Best audio quality
  • Dual voice coils and dual tweeters

Cons

  • Complex wiring
  • Expensive

Recommendation

Audiophiles who want the same fidelity outside as they enjoy inside or with their headphones will want the Klipsch AWR-650-SM.

 

 

8. Best Solar-Powered Rock Speaker: Alpine Corporation Solar-Powered Outdoor Wireless Speaker

Alpine Corporation Solar-Powered Outdoor Wireless Speaker

  • Styles: Brown, Grey
  • Max Power: Not stated
  • Sensitivity: Not stated
  • Impedance: Not stated
  • Frequency Response: Not stated
  • Speaker Size: Not stated
  • Driver Angle: Not stated
  • Connection: Bluetooth

Overview

The Alpine Corporation Solar-Powered Outdoor Wireless Speaker is a truly wireless speaker.

Sure, you can plug in a USB cord to charge it, but you’ll likely never need to. It charges using solar power and can run in just a little bit of light.

If there’s no sun, then it can still play music for up to 15 hours.

Unless you want outdoor music all night long in the northern Alaskan winter, you won’t run into battery troubles.

That’s not to say there won’t be trouble, though, because Alpine Corporation decided to put their solar-powered speaker inside one of the least-protective product boxes I’ve seen.

Also, you can only use one speaker at a time. You can’t pair two of them for surround sound. Since they’re not very loud, you won’t be able to provide audio for outdoor parties with these.

They’re still good for smaller outdoor events, though. It’s even a good camping speaker.

Pros

  • Good for travel
  • Solar powered

Cons

  • Cannot use two or more of these speakers at once
  • Poor packaging

Recommendation

Alpine Corporation Solar-Powered Outdoor Wireless Speaker is good for an intimate level of sound without the hassle of wires, and it is good for traveling but shouldn’t be your main outdoor speaker.

 

 

What Are Rock Speakers?

tan rock speaker

Your first reaction to the phrase “rock speaker” might be to think that it’s a type of guitar audio device intended for rock ‘n’ roll.

Naw. Rock speakers are speakers disguised as rocks.

Most of them are wired to an amplifier or audio receiver. Some can connect to a Bluetooth device but will still require a power cable.

At least two models, however, have true wireless capabilities and are rechargeable over USB or by solar power.

 

Why Buy Rock Speakers?

rock speaker by the pool

So you can enjoy sound out-of-doors!

Rock speakers are used by people who have a deck, patio, garden, or pool they frequently use. You can listen to music, a podcast, or an audiobook while relaxing outside.

Rock speakers are also good for people who like parties and other get-togethers. They’re good for BBQs and other events because a pair or more of rock speakers will provide fuller sound at a greater distance than you’ll be able to get out of a boombox or mobile smartphone speaker.

Plus, you can wire some rock speakers to your already-existing audio equipment, so you can take advantage of your audiophile gear without needing to stay indoors.

 

Advantages of Rock Speakers Over Other Outdoor Speakers

gray rock speaker

The main difference between a rock speaker and any other wireless outdoor speaker is the appearance. Most outdoor speakers call attention to themselves.

At best, this can ruin the natural look of your landscaping.

At worst, thieves will target your expensive speaker system, cut the wires, and make off with your outdoor speakers.

Rock speakers, however, are harder to spot. They often come in brown and grey colors, so you can match them to other rocks on your property.

This is good for both decoration and stealth.

 

How to Choose Rock Speakers?

man holding rock speaker

Rock speakers all look similar, so you’d be excused for thinking they’re all the same.

However, the internals can be quite different from one rock speaker to another.

The guts of one rock speaker may make it a great choice for one person and a horrible mistake for another person.

Here are some characteristics which can help you decide on what criteria is important for you, so you can make a good choice for your first purchase.

 

Audio Quality

Bose Free Space 51 installed
Bose Free Space 51

Many components go into audio quality. A wider frequency response will get you better bass, for example. But that doesn’t tell you how well the driver pumps out that bass.

For the most part, you’ll have to trust reviewers to inform you whether a speaker has good or bad sound. Or, you’ll need to experience it yourself.

However, if you have high standards for audio quality, then there are really only two choices on this list:

Bose’s Free Space 51 and Klipsch AWR-650-RM.

Personally, I’ve always found Bose to be a bit overpriced and overhyped. I’d go with the Klipsch if I were you.

I wear Sennheisers, not Beats, so you can trust that I know at least a little bit about good audio gear.

 

Durability

rock speaker on snow

For the most part, rock speakers are durable electronics.

They are designed to be used outside, and almost all of them can easily withstand driving rain, freezing cold, and intense heat.

Some, however, are also hardened against chemical hazards you’ll find outside, such as salt spray or spilled pool chemicals.

Also, take into consideration children. They’re notorious for poking around funny-shaped objects such as rock speakers. If you have kids, then consider speakers you can hide when not in use or ones known for their physical durability.

 

Installation

rock speaker with rolled wire

Rock speakers are rarely plug-and-play devices (except for wireless speakers, which I cover below).

Wired speakers have to be physically connected to other components of an audio system, such as an amplifier or audio receiver. But you can’t use any old wire.

You’ll need wire of the proper gauge rated for direct burial; otherwise, you’ll have trouble getting your speakers to work.

There are also maximum lengths with these cables. For example, the Bose Free Space 51 speaker’s longest recommended cord is a 12-gauge wire that’s 80 feet long.

Also, installation can be difficult because you will need to dig up your lawn and wire electronic devices together.

You can do this yourself or hire someone to do it for you. Or, you can get Bluetooth speakers and ignore the wiring and installation bits.

 

Wired vs. Bluetooth

wired rock speaker

As mentioned before, Bluetooth speakers don’t require complex installation.

All you have to do is ensure the speaker has power, turn it on, then connect to it with your Bluetooth device (most often a smartphone).

Some Bluetooth rock speakers have battery packs that allow you to operate them without needing to plug them in. These are great because they don’t need to be permanently installed.

You can use them when you need them and then store them in safety when you don’t want to use them, keeping them safe from thieves and inquisitive children.

Even the Bluetooth rock speakers that don’t have an internal battery are easy to use because you can plug them into any normal electrical outlet.

However, going with Bluetooth does make you give up certain features, such as the ability to connect four speakers into one system for high-fidelity sound.

Also, Bluetooth speakers are rarely as powerful as wired speakers.

 

Power

internal of rock speaker

Like any electrical device, speakers require power to operate.

Power, in this case, is measured in watts. The more watts, the more powerful the speaker.

This translates to a higher potential maximum volume. It can also mean a clearer sound at lower volume levels.

Maximum wattage is only part of the equation, though. Sensitivity has a lot to do with it.

Sensitivity, measured in decibels (dB, the measure of sound volume), is how many dB your speaker can produce from one watt. A higher sensitivity will make for a louder and clearer speaker while using less electricity.

So, for maximum volume, you want a high-sensitivity and high-wattage speaker.

Be careful, though!

Some speakers are capable of throwing sound at such a volume they can blow out their own speaker.

Also, noise ordinances exist to keep people from disturbing the peace. You might not want to buy the highest-power speaker you can if you won’t be able to take advantage of all that power.

 

Top Brands

Bose

Bose is one of the most well-known audio companies in the US.

Many households enjoy Bose home audio systems, which can provide a movie theater experience in your living room.

Bose also sells many headphones and automobile sound systems to common folks. Audio professionals use Bose systems as well.

Even astronauts have used Bose’s noise-canceling headphones to prevent hearing damage. Rockets are rather noisy, you know.

However, audiophiles tend to be a bit dismissive of Bose. That’s because this company tends to focus on quantity of sound over quality. It’s loud and expensive, and Bose does not like to publish their audio equipment’s technical specifications.

The average person, however, will be more than happy with a Bose sound system. They may pay a little bit more for Bose than if they assembled the system, but not everyone has to be an enthusiast.

Perhaps my favorite fact about Bose is that they once dipped their toes into nuclear physics, hired a team of researchers to explore the topic for several years, and were partially responsible for debunking cold fusion in the 1990s!

 

Klipsch Audio Technologies

While Bose focuses on complete sound systems (and occasionally other disciplines such as cold fusion), Klipsch focuses on speakers.

Klipsch tends to focus on horn speakers and has pioneered techniques and materials which have reduced, if not eliminated, many of the disadvantages to this type of speaker. But they don’t just sell loudspeakers.

Computer speakers, public address speakers, headphone speakers, and more are made by Klipsch and sold around the nation and around the world. Klipsch speakers are used by AMC and Regal theaters, the Hard Rock Cafe, and many other businesses.

Klipsch Audio Technologies was founded in 1946 and is still around, though they were bought by and made a subsidiary of Audiovox in 2011. Audiovox, currently known as Voxx International, is a global company that produces OEM, consumer, and commercial audio equipment.

Other brands owned by Voxx International are 8018 Audio, Acoustic Research, and RCA.

 

F.A.Q.

How do rock speakers work?

rock speaker assembled

A rock speaker is composed of several parts:

  • A cabinet
  • A driver
  • Electronics

The cabinet is what holds everything together and keeps it all safe from the elements. Normally the speaker cabinet is a box, but in this case, it’s shaped like a stone.

The driver is the part of the speaker that turns electricity and the audio signal into sound. That’s the circular bit.

The electronics are the wires which supply the electricity and signal to make the whole thing work.

 

How do you install and sync/pair rock speakers?

Rock speaker installation depends on whether you’re installing a wired speaker or Bluetooth speaker.

Wired

man installing rock speaker

A wired speaker comes with a short section of cable. You need to connect this to a much longer section of direct-burial-rated cable. You’ll run that cable to your house then bury it.

The other end needs to be connected to the device that sends out the power and audio signals. This can be an amplifier or a receiver, depending on your set-up.

Your rock speaker will come with wiring diagrams and instructions on how to run the wiring. You can do this yourself or hire someone to do it if you aren’t an amateur electrician.

 

Bluetooth

bluetooth rock speakers

Wireless speakers are much easier to install:

  1. Ensure the speaker has power and is on.
  2. Pair it with your Bluetooth device.

If you’re not sure how to do that last part, it’s actually pretty easy:

  1. Make sure the speaker is on.
  2. Turn on your device’s Bluetooth.
  3. Wait for it to scan for Bluetooth devices in range.
  4. Select the rock speaker from the list of devices.

Congratulations!

Your phone, computer, or whatever is now connected to the rock speaker.

Go ahead and cue up some rock music to play out of your rock speaker. It’s time to roll.

Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson learned to walk in the mountains and has spent much of his life exploring the outdoors. He is equally at home in the woods, at the range, or on the gunsmithing bench, and loves to build guns almost as much as he enjoys shooting them. His travels have taken him to the four corners of the United States. Though his favorite hunting spot is in Alaska, Kansas deer taste better.

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