Great gifts are things people wanted or didn’t know they wanted. It’s just that simple. With this in mind, we should all strive to become great at gift-giving. No matter what the situation, it’s really not that complicated to give a great gift. All we need to do is find gifts that people need. Quite frankly, who doesn’t need a portable Bluetooth speaker? It’s the ideal gift for anyone and everyone. 

That said, there’s no shortage of portable Bluetooth speakers on the market today. With so many choices, choosing one as a gift can be tough. Thankfully, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s all you need to know to pick the perfect portable speaker gift for anyone. 


Audio Quality

To the average listener, the audio quality of most Bluetooth speakers will sound fine. Still, there are things you should look for. 

Total harmonic distortion

First, look for a portable speaker low in total harmonic distortion. Some speakers do not sound good at max volume. The sound becomes distorted and the bass is muffled. In outdoor settings, people tend to play music at max volume, so the lower the total harmonic distortion, the better. 

Frequency response

The second thing to consider is the frequency response.  Measured in Hertz, the range typically falls between 100Hz-20,000Hz. In theory, the greater the range, the better. However, it really depends on the listener. With age, our ability to hear certain frequencies diminishes, especially on the higher end. 

Enhanced bass

Younger people tend to listen to music with a lot of bass. Therefore, look for portable speakers with enhanced bass. These speakers amplify the frequencies in the 20Hz-250Hz range to produce loud, thumping bass. Some even have a dedicated Bass button that can really get things moving. 

Battery Life

Nothing can be worse than starting an impromptu dance party only to have the speaker run out of power. Long battery life for any portable speaker cannot be overstated. Typically the battery life will be directly correlated with the size and weight of a speaker. Therefore, larger portable speakers tend to have longer battery life than smaller speakers. 

Charge your smartphone with your portable speaker

For most people, battery life between 10-12 hours will suffice. If you’re buying a larger portable speaker, look for the option to charge additional devices like smartphones with the battery. This turns the portable speaker into a portable power bank as well. This can come in handy, especially during camping and hiking trips away from power sources. 

Another workaround for smaller speakers is to combine the gift with a portable power bank. Together they can extend any dance party late into the night. Many portable speakers can charge and be used at the same time, offering extended battery life when you need it most. 


Portable speaker style and size 

Portable speakers come in a variety of styles, shapes, colours, and price points. There’s a lot of different designs to choose from. Here’s what you should look for. 

360-degree sound

For group settings consider a portable speaker with 360-degree sound. These are typically cylinder-shaped and the sound comes out equally from every side. These speakers are highly versatile and can be used in a variety of settings, both indoors and outdoors. The great thing about them is you don’t have to be strategic in its placement. It sounds equally good near a wall, or in the middle of a table. 

Built-in hooks or handles

Look for speakers that come with built-in handles for portability. If a speaker is easy to carry, it will be frequently used. Some portable speakers also come with built-in hooks. This gives you a lot of flexibility in its placement. You could hang it during a party, place it on the ground during a picnic, or clip it to your backpack for a hike.  When it comes to portability, handles and hooks should never be overlooked. 

Do you want a large portable speaker?

Determining which size to get really depends on the person and the use cases. In general, the bigger the speaker, the louder the sound. Larger speakers tend to weigh more which can affect their portability. As mentioned, larger speakers also have longer battery life. The key is to find something in the middle that has good battery life, portability, and loud sound. 

Cool features you’ll find on portable speakers

Portable speakers have come a long way in a short period of time. With so much competition in the space, new features are being added to entice customers. 

Bring the music with party mode

For parties, I highly recommend considering portable speakers with built-in colour-changing LED lights. These speakers typically come with a corresponding app that allows for multiple light modes. One party favourite feature is lights that follow the beat of the music. This can turn virtually any environment into a club-like atmosphere. Also, look for party speakers with a mic input. This allows for karaoke sessions during parties. Nothing gets a party started like drunk karaoke — tried, tested, and true. 

Connect two devices at once

Another feature to look for is dual Bluetooth connections. This is especially important for portable speakers used in party settings, Dual Bluetooth connections allow two devices to connect to a speaker at the same time. That means during parties, two people can play DJ at the same time. Each can take their turn streaming music off their smartphone to keep the party going all night long. 

Finally, consider portable speakers that support multiple connections. These speakers allow you to connect the same speaker or others from the same brand to create a multi-room experience. Imagine hosting a BBQ and having one speaker on your patio and another in your bathroom. As your guests go to the bathroom, the music will follow them through the house. 

Portable speakers make great gifts

As stated, the best gifts are the things you need. You’ll be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn’t need a portable Bluetooth speaker. They are great for listening to podcasts, taking calls hands-free, or bringing to parties and other social gatherings. If you want to be known as a great gift-giver, give portable speakers a closer look. You and the gift recipient will not be disappointed. 

Andy Baryer
Andy Baryer aka “Handy Andy” is a technology journalist, gadget reviewer, and DIY/how-to content creator. Known as the handyman of tech, Andy enjoys fixing poor wireless networks, building smart homes, and cooking with the latest kitchen gadgets. He’s a competitive whistler, a budding woodworker, and loves gardening in his home-built smart garden.