Motorcycle speakers add another level of enjoyment to a great ride. Once reserved for large cruiser bikes, today’s speakers come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and options. In addition to classic stereo speakers, there are speakers that mount to your handlebars, soundbars, and even speakers for your helmet.

Speakers have come a long way from the tinny-sounding ones adorning motorcycles in the past. In addition to better sound, most motorcycle speakers offer Bluetooth connectivity, USB access, and charging capabilities, in addition to the standard headphone jack. Plus, many of them are rated for weather, in case you get caught in a sudden downpour. 

There are many different types of speakers to choose from and the variety can be overwhelming. That’s why we put together this guide on the best motorcycle speakers on the market today.     

— Best Overall: BOSS Audio Systems MCBK425BA
— Best Handlebar: Rockville RockNRide
— Best Soundbar: Kuryakyn 2720 MTX Road Thunder
— Best Bluetooth: LEXIN LX-Q3
— Best Helmet Speakers: Cardo PTB00040 - PACKTALK
— Best for Loud Sound: GoHawk TJ4-Q
— Best Budget Helmet Speakers: LEXIN B4FM 10

How We Picked The Best Motorcycle Speakers

I compiled this list by looking at over a dozen motorcycle speakers and comparing them based on power, input sources, and waterproof rating. Then I looked at features, such as the type of connectivity and control options they provide, as well as range. Finally, I looked at other reviews, including ones from actual buyers who’ve used these speakers, and compared them to my personal experience. 

There’s lots of variety in the best motorcycle speakers. Determining which one is right for you comes down to your budget, how you’ll connect to the speaker, what you use it for, and whether you need one with a higher IP rating for weather or marine conditions. 

Best Overall: BOSS Audio Systems MCBK425BA

Trusted Stereo. BOSS Audio Systems

Why It Made The Cut: Combining great sound with Bluetooth, inline connectivity, and durability backed by a three-year warranty, the Boss Audio Systems MCBK425BA is the top overall pick for motorcycle speakers. 

Specs:
Speaker Size: 3 inches
Power Output: 600 watts peak
Frequency Response: 80 – 15,000 Hz (hertz)

Pros:
— Easy to use volume control
— Bluetooth and inline connectivity
— Great sound
— Three-year warranty 

Cons:
— Lacks an on/off switch
— Water resistant but not IP rated

BOSS Audio Systems MCBK425BA offers full-range sound from a pair of 3-inch speakers. They are easy to mount to just about any set of handlebars and are a great choice for motorcycles, scooters, ATVs, and even bicycles. With a 600-watt peak, you’ll be able to hear your music whether you’re just tooling around town, or blasting along on the freeway

The MCBK425BAs provide a 3.5-mm jack as well as good Bluetooth connectivity. While they are not marine rated, the plastic housing provides good weather protection and will handle moderate rain and fog. The inline controls are also weatherproof and easy to use, even when wearing gloves.   

The one downside to the MCBK425BA speakers is the lack of a true on/off switch. This can put a slight drain on the battery. This might not be a problem if you ride at least several times a week, but if you are an occasional rider, you may want to consider installing a battery kill switch or keep your battery on a trickle charger. Aside from this issue, it’s hard to beat this speaker for all-around sound quality, connectivity, or durability. Plus it comes with a three-year warranty.

Best Handlebar: Rockville RockNRide

Rock All Night. Rockville

Why It Made The Cut: IP67 weather-rated, the Rockville RockNRides offer great sound from marine rated waterproof speakers that are easy to install thanks to a variety of flexible mounting options.  

Specs:
Speaker Size: 3 inches
Power Output: 300 watts peak
Frequency Response: 20 – 20,000 Hz (hertz)

Pros:
Flexible mounting options fit a variety of handlebars
Good weatherproof IP67 rated
Sturdy metal construction 

Cons:
Speakers can rattle at high volume
Can be a drain on battery power

Rockville’s RockNRide speakers are great because they fit a variety of handlebars and come with a 360-degree rotating mounting bracket. With an IP67 rating, the metal speakers are sturdy and very waterproof. They even include a built-in USB 2.0 input jack with a waterproof cover. 

The RockNRides include a built-in amplifier that cranks out 300 watts of peak power, getting loud, with good sound. The inline controls are easy to use. One drawback of these speakers is that they can be a slight drain on your motorcycle’s battery when they are turned off. Also, some owners have reported a rattle with the volume turned up. 

However, if you want a loud good sounding speaker that is easy to install and will handle any kind of weather, the Rockville RockNRide speakers are worth checking out.

Best Soundbar: Kuryakyn 2720 MTX Road Thunder

Freeway Fidelity. Kuryakyn

Why It Made The Cut: When it comes to sound quality, the Kuryakyn 2720 MTX Road Thunder takes top honors. It includes multiple connection options and offers good weather protection to boot.  

Specs:
Speaker Size: Two 3-inch speakers in a 10.6 inch long tube
Power Output: 300 watts peak
Frequency Response: 20 – 20,000 Hz (hertz)

Pros:
Unbeatable sound
IP66 weather-rated
Bluetooth 4.1 and inline connectivity
USB charging port

Cons:
Size can be a problem for some handlebars
Expensive compared to other options  

Most motorcycle speakers compromise sound quality for practicality. In reality, it’s hard to get a full dynamic sound from a pair of 3-inch speakers. But the Kuryakyn 2720 MTX Road Thunder is the exception. The sound quality on these speakers is amazing. 300 watts of sound that’s so loud your buddies will clearly hear the music in the next lane. 

The speaker tube is IP66 weather-rated and will withstand just about anything less than underwater submersion. It runs off a seperate battery and can be charged via USB. It’s also easy to get connected with a 3.5 mm line-in and 4.1 Bluetooth capability. 

There are two drawbacks to the Road Thunder. One is its price - it costs four times more than the Boss Audio and Rockville speakers on this list. The other problem is that the size of the speaker tube will not fit some handlebar shapes. 

However, those drawbacks can be mitigated by the portability of the Road Thunder. You can take this tube with you and use it as a portable stereo. The sound quality is so good that it will draw a crowd at any meetup.

Best Bluetooth: LEXIN LX-Q3

Total Connectivity. LEXIN

Why It Made The Cut: Combining the latest Bluetooth technology with a serious IP67 weather rating and stereo-quality sound, the LEXIN LX-Q3 is the natural pick for best Bluetooth speaker

Specs:
Speaker Size: 3 inches
Power Output: 150 watts peak
Frequency Response: 80 – 16,000 Hz (hertz)

Pros:
— Heavy-duty metallic housing with IP67 rating
— Stereo-quality sound
— Easy handlebar mounting
— Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity 

Cons:
— Lacks instruction manual
— Not as powerful as other speakers

Older versions of Bluetooth can be frustrating, with choppy sound and bad connections. The LEXIN LX-Q3 doesn’t have this problem thanks to its Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity. It won’t cut out because of the weather either. The IP67 water-resistance rating means it could be submerged in water and not miss a beat.  

The sound quality of the LEXIN is good, but not as powerful as other top models. So if a loud profile is important, stick with one of the other speakers. The LEXIN also doesn’t come with an owner’s manual. It’s a small issue because you can find the user info on the internet, but still a little strange. 

It was a hard choice ranking the LEXIN lower than the Boss Audio, but it came down to loudness and sound quality. The Boss Audio speakers are the best overall, but the LEXIN speakers are a close runner-up.

Best Helmet: Cardo PTB00040 - PACKTALK

Connect Through Mesh. Cardo

Why It Made The Cut: If you want great sound and cutting-edge technology from a top-of-the-line helmet speaker, the Cardo PTB00040 is your answer.  

Specs:
Speaker Size: 45 millimeters
Connectivity: Mesh
Warranty: 3 years

Pros:
— DMC mesh technology
— JBL stereo speakers
— Great digital sound processing
— IP67 rated

Cons:
— Expensive compared to other options
— Voice commands are hit or miss

If you want top of the line helmet speakers, the Cardo PTB00040 - PACKTALK  are the ones to get. The 45-millimeter JBL speakers outperform everything in their size category in terms of sound quality. But what really sets the Cardo apart is the Dynamic Mesh connectivity and Cardo’s Natural Voice Operation system. 

DMC or Dynamic Meshwork Communication allows you to communicate with up to 15 other riders simultaneously within a one-mile range. Plus you can share music and audio with other people and enjoy good quality sound. As a bonus, Cardo’s active noise canceling works extremely well, easily filtering out wind and other background noises.  

Cardo’s Natural Voice Operation system works like the system on your phone or in your car. It recognizes 20 plus commands. Like other systems interpreting those commands can be hit or miss but it does work well enough that you don’t have to fumble for your phone. However, should you need to adjust the volume, the roller wheel interface is easy to use even when wearing gloves.  

The Cardo Packtalk carries an IP67 waterproof rating, meaning you can ride through a carwash and it will shrug it off. The system is expensive compared to other headsets and helmet speakers, but the quality and performance justify the price. 

Best for Loud Sound: GoHawk TJ4-Q

Road Roar. GoHawk

Why It Made The Cut: The GoHawk TJ4-Q pumps out loud, clear-sounding music when you’re out on the open road. 

Specs:
Speaker Size: 4 inches
Power Output: 1,000 watt peak
Frequency Response: 20 – 20,000 Hz (hertz)

Pros:
— Sturdy aluminum housing
— Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity
— 1000 watts of peak power
— Full-function controls  

Cons:
— IP56 won’t handle regular wet weather  

If you want loud clear sound on the highway, the GoHawk TJ4-Q will deliver. The sound quality is remarkably good for a motorcycle speaker and the Bluetooth 5.0 capability ensures a reliable stream of uninterrupted connectivity. 

This speaker’s downside is that the IP56 water resistance rating is less than most of the other speakers on this list. It will handle the occasional rain shower, but if you regularly ride in wet weather the GoHawk won’t hold up. 

On the positive side, the speaker’s aluminum housing is well made and looks great, and the price is reasonable for the sound quality you get. All in all, if you want a great stereo for your bike: one that will pump out loud, clear, and great-sounding music on a sunny day, then check out the GoHawk TJ4-Q. 

Best Budget Helmet Speakers: LEXIN B4FM 10

Affordable Road ‘Phones. LEXIN

Why It Made The Cut: LEXIN’s B4FM offers a great combination of connectivity, range, and functionality for an incredible price.  

Specs:
Speaker Size: 36 millimeters
Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0
Warranty: 2 years

Pros:
— Extremely affordable
— Bluetooth 5.0
— Built-in FM radio
— 15 hours of talk time

Cons:
— Sound quality isn’t great

If you balked at the cost of the Cardo PACKTALK but still want speakers for your helmet, the LEXIN B4FM 10 is a great option at an unbeatable price. It connects up to 10 people within a one-mile range. It doesn’t have mesh technology, but the Bluetooth 5.0 provides stable connectivity. The system also includes hands-free voice recognition for basic headset functions. 

The LEXIN has a top IP67 waterproof rating and works in all seasons and extreme temperatures. It comes with a boom microphone and a button microphone for different helmet types. Finally, an 800 mAh battery provides up to 15-hours of talk time and over one week of standby time. 

The biggest complaint people have is about the speaker’s sound quality. It’s great for voice communication but leaves something to be desired for music. However, if you aren’t expecting premium-quality sound, the LEXIN B4fm has a lot to offer.

Things to Consider Before Buying Motorcycle Speakers

Beyond how they look on your bike, there are four things to consider when shopping for motorcycle speakers: 

Type of Speaker 

The most common types of speakers are handlebar-mounted speakers and helmet speakers. Both types offer good sound quality and Bluetooth connectivity. Handlebar speakers are typically louder and easier to use. They usually have external controls. Helmet speakers can be easier to hear and also offer the option of hands-free communication.   

Power

Speaker power is measured in watts. The higher the output in watts, the louder the volume. Speaker output is rated in two categories: RMS power is the loudest constant volume rating and peak power is the absolute maximum volume. For around-town riding, a lower power rating is fine. But if you’re headed out on the open road, more powerful speakers are less likely to be drowned out. 

Input Sources

Unless you have a stereo mounted on your bike, you’ll need an input source for your speakers. The most common inputs are either a 3.5-mm headphone jack or a USB port, which usually doubles as a charger. Bluetooth, which has been hit and miss in the past, has improved with 4.0 and 5.0, and maintains a good connection without dropping out. Just make sure you get a set of speakers that are compatible with a more current standard of Bluetooth like 4.0 or higher. 

Waterproof Design

Most motorcycle speakers are waterproof, but some are better than others at withstanding the elements. If you plan to ride in all weather, or just want to be prepared for the occasional rain shower, you’ll want to check to see if the speaker you’re interested in is waterproof. Speakers that are marine rated offer serious weather protection and will carry an IP or Ingress Protection rating. If weather protection is important to you, look for speakers that carry an IP 65 or 66 rating. 

FAQs

Q: How much do motorcycle speakers cost?

Expect to pay between $50 to $100 for a good mid-range pair of speakers. Prices go up from there for higher quality sound or more features.  

Q: What is a good wattage for motorcycle speakers? 

For external or handlebar-mounted speakers, 300 watts is a good minimum power rating. If you’re looking at helmet speakers, look at speaker quality and features like active noise-canceling.   

Q: Do I need an amp for motorcycle speakers?

Most motorcycle speaker systems have amplifiers built into them to enhance the sound. The built-in amplifiers should provide a level of power consistent with the speakers’ rating so adding additional amplification will not improve the sound and may damage the speaker. 

Q: How can I make my motorcycle speakers louder? 

The best way is to either add an amplifier that’s compatible with your speakers’ power rating or add an amplifier and upgrade your speakers. If you buy an amplifier that’s too powerful for your current speakers you will overpower the speakers and damage them.  

Final Thoughts

When you’re shopping for motorcycle speakers, the BOSS Audio Systems MCBK425BA is the best overall pick, offering the best combination of features and sound quality for a good price. The Rockville RockNRide and LEXIN LX-Q3 aren’t far behind and are also great choices. Finally, for motorcycle helmet speakers the Cardo PTB00040 - PACKTALK is the best overall pick and the LEXIN B4FM 10 is a good budget option.  

This post was created by a non-news editorial team at Recurrent Media, Futurism’s owner. Futurism may receive a portion of sales on products linked within this post.


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