Posted on Tue, 07 Jun, 2016
Posted by Raven


When the weather is fine, us Brits like to head outside. BBQs, garden parties and even pool parties (for the lucky few) are about to become the main events within every social calendar. And hey, some of you may just want to sit outside and chill in the sun. Maybe with a beer.

But what do you do about music at such things? Do you leave the doors and windows open? Maybe grab an extension lead and push your speakers to the window sill? Sure, that’s one way of doing it. But it’s by no means a good way. Not when you have some pretty nifty outdoor speakers available to you.

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Outdoor speakers are purposefully designed to be suitable for the outdoors. Sealed from the elements, subtle (sometimes even camouflaged, as you can see above) and nice, big and loud for the open air. We have models available from £104.95, which are largely are either a ‘rock’ design for clever sneaky positioning (again, as above) or more classic black or white speakers for mounting on walls.

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Okay, so now you know such a thing is possible, it’s time to tell you how this will work in a practical sense. Yes, they’re geared up for outdoor use, but you’ll still have to do *some* of the leg work yourself.

First and foremost: these are all passive speakers, which means you will need an amplifier (indoors) to get them to work

Here are some likely scenarios:

a) You have an amp that’s already in use 
You can connect these to “zone B” or second speaker output (if you have one)

b) You have a spare amp
Set it up and use it for these and these alone, while connecting a source at the back

c) You have a Sonos system
Connect the outdoor speakers to the ZP120 unit (FYI: the latest version is called the Sonos Connect: Amp) indoors and you can then control the outdoor speakers as an additional “zone” on your Sonos system. Pretty cool.

No matter which one of the above applies to you, you will need an outdoor speaker cable of suitable length to finish the job.

… that’s about as complicated as it gets! As a system it’s very simple to set up and use. Simply: choose your speakers, buy your speakers, find a nice place to put them and the run an outdoor speaker cable safely to an indoor amp and you’re ready to go. Follow the guidelines provided for safely hiding/burying the cable if you want to make it a more permanent fixture.

Remember, the speakers are waterproof… but the amp is not. So don’t be tempted to bring your amp outside under any circumstances, no matter how annoying going inside is! If you’re using your new speakers them with a Sonos system it doesn’t matter where you that doesnt matter where you are in conjunction with the amp as you can sit outside with your iPad and control the zone over your home network.

However, a cool hack for the (non Sonos) amp indoors is to use a Bluetooth streamer like the Arcam Miniblink to create a Bluetooth enabled speaker system you can also control from your tablet or phone… in your garden! I don’t need to tell you the benefits of this, they’re rather apparent.

You may be asking, why not just get a portable speaker? Sure, that’s one way of doing it, but outdoor speakers guarantee a much better quality of sound. Plus, it’s a permanent set-up (less messing around) and far more impressive to enjoy and yes, show off to your guests. You’ll be inviting them over in their droves!