Ion Sport for Outdoor ActivitiesAny sort of party is simply incomplete without music. This is why portable speakers are so popular. Nowadays, rechargeable batteries and a Bluetooth connexion make everything easy and convenient. ION has a lot of models in its production line and all of them have different features that will interest various types of users. The Sport and Sport XL are perfect for outdoor lovers that want to add some life to their activities. The Party Rocker Effects has some fun additions for evening gatherings. More importantly, all three models come with a microphone for portable karaoke. This makes them a pretty versatile option for all kinds of music lovers. Read on to find out which one of these suits your needs.

ION Sport

Ion Sport is small and water resistantFor outdoor fun, even in rainy conditions, the ION Sport promises to keep you grooving thanks to its 65-watt rating. A healthy amount of power is essential outside, since there’s a lot of space to cover. The woofer is a respectable 6.5”, so you can have a deeper bass than those smaller Bluetooth speakers. Dedicated 2” tweeters provide clarity and definition. Low end lovers will be happy to know that there’s even a bass boost option to really feel the music.

One of the coolest things about this unit is that it features IPX5 water resistance. This protects it from low pressure streams from any angle. This means that you won’t have to dash for your speaker’s sake when it starts to pour. It might even handle a few splashes from the pool.

Additional features include a wireless stereo link for compatible speakers. A 1A USB outlet will keep your devices charged up. Non-Bluetooth devices are also compatible, thanks to an aux input. You can also set 20 preset radio stations. Although this might not be the most exciting feature, it’s still fun and practical to be able to dial in your favourite sports, news or music station if your smart phone is unavailable. Lastly, a handle will make transportation more convenient.

ION Sport XL

ION Sport XL has a higher power rating, ideal for outdoor karaokeThe ION Sport XL is a bigger brother to the regular model. This one has a 120-watt amplifier to help cover even more ground with sound. It’s better suited for spacious backyards and gatherings (and karaoke). The woofer and tweeter dimensions are also larger, respectively 8 and 3 inches. This will make a noticeable difference, especially when compared to smaller speakers that we often see. Being a larger item, ION thought of including wheels and a telescoping handle making transportation a lot easier.

It has most of the same features as the smaller model, but this time two charge ports are included. Battery life is also estimated at 75 hours, which is quite impressive for such a powerful device.

ION Party Rocker Effects

The ION Party Rocker Effects has definitely another feel to it compared to the two previous models. This one acts as not only a speaker, but a full-on light show. The spinning dome mounted on top fills the room thanks to multiple automated light modes. They synch up to the tempo of the music, which creates a fun and enjoyable ambiance. Additionally, the grill itself is illuminated by LED lights to enhance the experience further.

Compared to the two previous models, this one has a 4” woofer and a lower 10 Watt power rating. This should be enough to cover small to medium-sized rooms. Don’t expect it to perform very well outdoors though. This is also a battery charged product, but you’ll need to insert 8 C batteries. You’ll be able to connect to your devices via Bluetooth and a USB charging outlet is provided.

A fun feature of the Party Rocker Effects is a second mic input. This means you’ll be able to host your own karaoke competitions and have a blast. Since there’s only one mic included, you’ll need to purchase a second. Additionally, you’ll have access to a variety of effects such as echo and robot voice. Although the robotic effect is obviously for fun, a touch of echo can really add some depth and quality to a singer’s voice. This will definitely increase the quality of the result and enhance any kind of performance.ION Party Rocker Effects has a built-in Light Show for Karaoke

Karaoke Fun

All three models are ready to be used for karaoke. An included microphone and cable will help you get started right out of the box. The mics have a handy power switch to keep mute the mic when passed around or when not in use. Since there are no screens on the speakers, you’ll need to supply the lyrics via the Internet or various apps. A lot of these are available and will stream the audio backing tracks as well as display the lyrics for your singer. Note that you’ll require a bigger screen for sharing the lyrics to the rest of the audience.

The Sport and Sport XL models are also compatible with ION’s Sound XP app which makes controlling your speaker a breeze. You’ll have access to volume, EQ settings, battery status and more. It works up to 100 feet which is generous enough for most situations.

Depending on your needs, all three products have something interesting to offer. Both Sport models obviously shine in indoor and outdoor settings. This will probably interest the people that like to hang out in the backyard a lot and want some musical accompaniment and/or karaoke entertainment. The biggest difference is the power capabilities, so make sure you consider that if you plan on taking it larger, open areas.

The Party Rocker is an inexpensive way of getting a karaoke device and a light show setup for the house. If you want to have the option available to you, but you aren’t sure if it’s going to be a recurrent activity, it’s a pretty good option to pick up.

No matter which speaker you go with, the quality and value of ION products will most likely surprise you. The sound is good and the construction is solid. You’ll be keeping yours for years to come.

Check out all the ION products on Best Buy’s website.

Nikolai Olekhnovitch
Nikolai Olekhnovitch is a professional guitarist from Montreal. The experience and musical versatility he acquired during his music studies and involvement with diverse musical acts come in quite handy when reviewing various instruments. When he is not on the road performing, he’s exploring martial arts and seeking out the perfect espresso.


  1. I’d sing Here comes the sun- Beatles since it’s the best song ever!!

    Ion Audio SportXL iPA130 All-Weather Wireless Rechargeable Speaker with Mic

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