Q Acoustics Q-BT3
From bargains on a budget to portable options that fit in your pocket, we take a look at some of the best wireless speakers worth investing in

If you're in the market for a new wireless speaker or two, there are a plethora of models for you to choose from.

Whether you want a portable speaker on a budget or something a little more substantial to free your digital music, it can be hard to know exactly where to start.

Are you looking to build a system in a smaller room of the house? Maybe you want a device that'll let you play your music when you're on the go? Or perhaps you're thinking about replacing an iPod or iPhone dock system? 

From AirPlay to Bluetooth speakers, and multiroom solutions, this page gives you a selection of the best wireless speakers money can buy.

MORE: Wireless speaker reviews

 

Best wireless speakers under £100

Cheap AirPlay speakers are hard to come by but you can get some pretty nifty Bluetooth speakers at this price point. 

Sony SRS-BTM8

Five stars

Tested at £85

For the price you pay, this Sony speaker is quite a find and is crammed with features. It's nice to use and can deliver impressive volume in a decent-sized room. So if you're on the hunt for a wireless speaker under £100, this should be near the top of your list.

MORE: Sony SRS-BTM8 review

 

JBL Flip

Five stars

Tested at £100

"A sensational blend of portability and performance" was how we described the Flip when we first gave it a go, and now this portable Bluetooth speaker is on sale for around half its original retail price. That spells bargain to us.

MORE: JBL Flip review

 

Best wireless speakers under £200

If you don't want to break the bank but have a budget that stretches to three figures then you won't be short of choice on wireless speakers. Spend this sort of money and you can even get a wireless speaker that will let you create a multiroom system.

 

Cambridge Audio Minx Go

Five stars

Tested at £100 

Our 2013 Wireless Speaker Product of the Year is a no-brainer: it tips similarly priced speakers into a cocked hat.

The Minx Go is a doddle to set up and you can pair up to eight devices at once – which is just as well, given that all your friends will be queuing up to use it.

MORE:  Cambridge Audio Minx Go review 

 

Ultimate Ears Boom

Five stars

Tested at £170

A hotly-contested price point, with wireless Bluetooth speakers from Beats, Bose, Creative, JBL and more, all competing for top spot.

But the Ultimate Ears Boom ticks all the right boxes for us, just pipping the five-star Bose SoundLink Mini (which is still a fine choice).

MORE:  Ultimate Ears Boom review

 

Pure Jongo S3 

Five stars

Tested at £175

Far removed from traditional hi-fi kit, the Pure Jongo S3 comes with interchangeable, multi-colour speaker grilles, an upward-firing subwoofer and four tweeters.

You can connect multiple Jongos to form a simple, Sonos-style multiroom system and what you get is a surprisingly beefy-sounding unit that's great at spreading its sound around your room. Bluetooth and WiFi streaming are a bonus.

MORE:  Pure Jongo S3 review 

 

Best wireless speakers under £300

It's at this price category that decent AirPlay speakers start to feature, offering you an alternative to Bluetooth should you want the neatness and simplicity of streaming directly from both your Apple iPhones and iPads and your iTunes library on a computer.

 

Denon Cocoon Stream DSD-501

Five stars

Tested at £250

You don't need to break the bank to get your hands on an AirPlay speaker. This Denon combines a refined and full-bodied performance with an attractive design, while it's also possible to use it with an Android device if you have a DLNA device.

MORE:  Denon Cocoon Stream DSD-501 review

 

JBL OnBeat Rumble

Prefer a Bluetooth model? This JBL is the best of the bunch for this sort of money. There's a Lighthing dock for dealing with iPhones but wireless comes in the form of Bluetooth, making it compatible with a whole world of devices.

An enthusiastic sound, it turns out 'Rumble' is an apt name for this energetic sounding speaker. You won't be disappointed. 

MORE: JBL OnBeat Rumble 

 

Sonos Play:3

Five stars

Tested at £260

The current mid-point in Sonos' Play-branded Zoneplayer range is a cracking little performer and was named Best Multiroom Streaming System in our 2013 Awards.

It's an all-in-one system combining a network music client, amp and speakers and sounds much better than its prize and size may suggest. If you fancy building a multiroom streaming system, this is the best way to go.

MORE:  Sonos Play:3 review

MORE: Sonos Buying Guide

 

More after the break

Best wireless speakers under £400

Spend this sort of money and you can expect to get something approaching hi-fi sound from what remain relatively compact speakers, as premium brands and specialist hi-fi companies get in on the wireless speaker act.

 

Q Acoustics Q-BT3

Five stars

Tested at £350

OK, so there's more than just wireless playback going on with the Q-BT3s, but what you get is an awesome package – Bluetooth streaming, an iPod dock alternative, powered stereo speakers and more. A great small system.

MORE: Q Acoustics Q-BT3 review

ALSO CONSIDER: Geneva Model S Wireless DAB+

 

Libratone Zipp

Five stars

Tested at £370

Standing apart from a sea of monochrome wireless AirPlay rivals, the Libratone Zipp comes with a series of brightly-coloured felt covers.

But there's much more to this speaker than the aesthetics – its 360-degree sound and ease of use make it a nice wireless experience.

MORE:  Libratone Zipp review

Best wireless speakers under £500

Audio Pro Allroom Air One

Five stars

Tested at £500

From a sophisticated leather finish to an equally elegant and entertaining sound, you can see why this bagged the Best Wireless Speaker £400+ gong at our 2013 Awards. This AirPlay speaker will charm you away from its rivals in the same price bracket.

MORE:  Audio Pro Allroom Air One

 

Best wireless speakers under £700

For wireless speakers in this price range, you should expect serious sound quality not too far off what you can get from a budget home hi-fi system. Beautifully crafted and wonderfully capable, the money you'll be paying will be well worth the investment.

DALI Kubik Free

Five stars

Tested at £625

It's new territory for the Danish company and not exactly at the budget end of the market, but you quickly hear why. AptX Bluetooth allows for high-quality wireless streaming, and DALI have used their speaker expertise to great effect.

MORE:  DALI Kubik Free review

 

B&W A7

Five stars

Tested at £700

At £700, it might seem like quite a lot to pay for an AirPlay speaker but the hi-fi sound quality and sheer ease of use makes the B&W A7 worth it. Once you've set the A7 up using tyhe B&W app, it' makes a subtle but classy addition to your surroundings, while offering excellent sound.

MORE: B&W A7 review

 

Upcoming wireless speakers

The Blesound brand is a new wireless streaming system looking to take on Sonos. It's an all-in-one system that hopes to set itself apart by supporting high-res, 24-bit audio. We can't wait to hear get some of the products in for review.

MORE:  Bluesound HD wireless music streaming system takes on Sonos 

Bose SoundTouch 20

£350

Bose is another manufacturer looking to take on Sonos in the multiroom speaker game, with the launch of three wireless streaming systems – including the Soundtouch 20. It'll work with your home wireless network and give you cable free access to your music. Look out for our review coming soon.

MORE:  Bose SoundTouch wireless systems take aim at Sonos

 

Musaic wireless speakers

Another Kickstarter campaign, this time to fund the UK-based Musaic. The company is looking to secure additional funding to put the MP5 and MP10 speakers in to production.

F irst spotted at CES, we'd certainly like to hear more from the company that was founded by a former Cambridge Audio engineer. Watch this space.

MORE: Musaic launches wireless hi-fi crowdfunding campaign

 

MORE: Best AirPlay speakers to buy in 2014

MORE:  Best Bluetooth speakers to buy in 2014

 

by  Pete Hayman

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Comments

checkandlearn's picture

purchased best wireless speaker

Impressive little speaker. Easy listening to some jazz on the deck. buy from Amazon