Once you buy your first Bluetooth Speaker you will fall so hopelessly in love with it that you will want to take it everywhere you go. While that sounds like a great plan on the surface, inevitably the speaker will encounter some form of water. Perhaps a surprise rain shower while relaxing in the park, or maybe a splash from the pool when lounging in the sun. In any event, you need to familiarize yourself with the IPX Waterproof ratings of Bluetooth Speakers. That way you can purchase speakers suitable for the environment where you plan to use your Bluetooth.
Pretty much all Bluetooth Speakers state what their IPX Waterproof Ratings are. The IPX rating is generally listed right on the packaging. Or in the case of online purchases, the IPX Waterproof ratings should be spelled out in the speaker specifications. Of course, the specs don’t do you any good unless you understand the scale. Not to worry, I will explain the IPX ratings below.
IPX-0 | Zero Protection from Water
Unless you plan to keep your Bluetooth Speaker on your nightstand, there is no sense in buying one with an IPX-0 rating. These speakers offer zero protection from water whatsoever. Meaning, even the nightstand could be a problem if you happen to spill your coffee or tip over your water bottle in the middle of the night.
IPX1 | Minimal Protection from Dripping Water
When they say minimal protection, they mean it. While these speakers will survive a few raindrops falling vertically; they are no match for a torrential downpour. The IPX1 offers short-term protection only, and can withstand a few drops of rain but not a deluge. In theory, they are rated for 1mm of rainfall in a 10-minute period, but I wouldn’t risk it. You better keep this speaker in a Zip-lock bag if you take it outside.
IPX2 |Dripping Water, Tilted up to 15 Degrees
Just like the IPX1 rating, the IPX2 can handle a few drops of dripping water. The only difference is you can tilt these models up to 15 degrees and the water won’t run inside the speaker. Great for a picnic but not so good for a day at sea.
IPX3 | Water Spray, Tilted up to 60 Degrees
Okay, now we are getting somewhere! A Bluetooth speaker with an IPX3 rating can handle a modest spray of water. You can even place the unit at an angle of 60 degrees and be safe. While it can’t handle the rigors of sea, it should be just fine on the back deck if you get caught in a light rain shower.
IPX4 | Splash Protection
Are you ready to head to the swimming pool? Then you need a Bluetooth Speaker with an IPX-4 rating or higher. These babies can withstand a light splash of water from any direction. While they aren’t exactly waterproof, you could describe them as water resistant. If you like to sing in the shower, the minimum rating you need is an IPX5.
IPX5 | Withstands Water Jets
This sucker can handle a direct hit from your garden sprinkler. So, if you pop your head inside to grab a cold one and the sprinklers happen to come on, your speaker won’t skip a beat. An IPX5 speaker can survive a direct spray of water from any angle.
IPX6 | Powerful Water Jets
Now were ready to go boating. In my mind an IPX6 is the minimum rating for Bluetooth Speaker you take on your boat. While it can’t be directly submerged in the water; it can certainly take on the spray from an ocean wave that crests the bow of your vessel.
IPX-7 | Fully Submerged up to 1 Meter (3 feet)
If you’re like me and you occasionally drop things in the water, you may want to step up to an IPX7 rating. If you happen to drop this guy in the pool or lake, it can survive, fully submerged in water up to 1 Meter deep (just over 3 feet for those of us that are metric impaired)
IPX8 | Fully Submerged in Water over 1 Meter Deep
Drop this bad boy in the deep end of your swimming pool and it won’t know the difference. Of course, just how deep the water can be will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, but in all cases an IPX8 Bluetooth Speaker will survive full submersion in depths greater than 1 meter.
So how can you decide which IPX Rating is the best choice for you? For starters compare the ratings to the environment of the intended use. For me the choice was easy. As an avid boater with slippery fingers, I needed an IPX7 rating. If you’re shopping for shower speaker, most of the IPX4 speakers will suffice.