How do I Choose the Best Travel Speakers?

Travel speakers are tiny, easily portable speakers that can fit into a bag and be brought along on a trip. Though some sacrifices in sound are to be expected due to their compact size, many can offer a much better sound than that of a pair of headphones, or even speakers built in to a laptop computer. To choose the best travel speakers, begin by considering the ways in which you travel, and how you hope to use your speakers.

Travel speakers come in different sizes. Some tiny ones fit easily into a purse or briefcase, while some might fit better into a larger suitcase, carry-on bag, or backpack. You will want to be sure the speakers you purchase will fit easily into your bag along with any other items you are bringing. Some are even capable of folding and being slipped into a small travel case. Many travel speakers are powered by batteries, though some may have adapters available to allow them to be plugged into the wall.

Another consideration when choosing these speakers is the way in which they will play music. If the speakers are designed to be hooked up to a computer through USB, it is not an issue. However, most travel speakers are designed to play music from an MP3 player. The speakers will connect through the device either through the 3.5 millimeter headphone jack, or through the charging/docking jack. Typically speakers that connect through the headphone jack will be compatible with virtually any MP3 device, whereas those that connect in another manner may be proprietary.

Keep in mind that in most cases, the MP3 player will also need to be charged in order to play music over the speakers. If the MP3 player is connected to the speakers through the headphone jack, it may be able to charge simultaneously through an adapter plugged into the wall, but may not if it is connected through the charging/docking jack, typically found on the bottom of the device. In addition to these considerations, design is another issue; travel speakers come in many different shapes, colors, and designs, to suit different tastes. Some are even designed to be water resistant, to listen to while shaving or showering, for example.

The final consideration is, of course, sound. If possible, it may be a good idea to try out a pair of travel speakers before purchase, or at least read reviews online. Keep in mind that sound is often sacrificed for size; it may be a better idea to select a larger set of travel speakers if you are more concerned about sound quality than portability.