If you are looking for the best smart speakers for music, you know that these speakers are graded as the best based on their ability to do more than play music. But this doesn’t mean settling on smart speakers with horrible audio performance for music; what it means is that beyond their compatibility with Alexa, Siri, Google Assistant, or Cortana, the smart speakers selected must offer the best audio for music, not too bassy, or other audio profile that would alter the quality of your music, albeit in a negative way.
With these considerations in mind, this article not only offers a list of the best smart speakers for enjoying the music but also a helpful guide that will lead you to the best possible smart speaker. Given the wide range of ever-growing varieties of smart speakers on the market and the competing, almost similar features, a guide that narrows down your options is nothing beyond helpful.
Note that in addition to their ability to control your smart home devices, entertain kids, quiz your loved ones, the best smart speaker could also just easily serve as your main music player, which is all thanks to the fact that these speakers are smart devices.
- 1 Comparison of the Best Smart Speakers for Music
- 2 Reviews of the Best Smart Speakers for Music
- 2.1 Sonos One Gen 2 – Best Overall Smart Speaker for Music
- 2.2 Amazon Echo Show 10 (2nd Gen) – 1st Runners Up for Great Music
- 2.3 Amazon Echo, 4th Generation (2020) – Best Sound and an Incredibly Elegant, Futuristic Look
- 2.4 Google Nest Hub Max – Best Quality Smart Speaker for Audiophiles
- 2.5 Amazon Echo Studio with 3D audio and Alexa – Best Smart Speaker with Immersive Sound from Dolby Atmos Integration
- 3 Buying Guide for the best smart speakers for music
- 4 FAQs
- 5 Conclusion
Comparison of the Best Smart Speakers for Music
Best Smart Speakers for Music
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Sonos One Gen 2
Best Overall Smart Speaker for Music
Amazon Echo Show 10
1st Runners Up for Great Music
Amazon Echo, 4th Generation (2020)
Best Sound and an Incredibly Elegant, Futuristic Look
Google Nest Hub Max
Best Quality Smart Speaker for Audiophiles
Amazon Echo Studio
Best Smart Speaker with Immersive Sound from Dolby Atmos Integration
Reviews of the Best Smart Speakers for Music
Sonos One Gen 2 – Best Overall Smart Speaker for Music
This is a portable speaker that runs on a rechargeable battery, and it comes with a recessed handle at the back for enhanced portability. This speaker is Bluetooth-compatible, meaning it doesn’t need WiFi to work, and you get to play music from your smartphone easily. This speaker is, however, heavy, which means that it’s more suitable for use in and around your home. At 6.6 pounds, you can only carry it around you’re the house or to the patio,
The good news is that you can use the Sonos One speaker in your multiroom system and at the heart of the WiFi-powered system, meaning you can listen to your kind of music in the study or kitchen while the rest of your household blasts their newest favorite pop music from the next space.
You may also like Sonos One because the speaker would still play music while you have Alexa on mute. There is also an additional feature, AirPlay 2, which allows Sonos One speakers to communicate with Siri, forming a multiroom pairing system with your Apple HomePod.
- Rich sound
- Best of Sonos and Alexa-enabled devices
- You can use it to play music while keeping Alexa muted
- Works with Alexa and Google Assistant
- Multi-room sound support
- Integrates with Apple HomePod
- Rather pricey
Amazon Echo Show 10 (2nd Gen) – 1st Runners Up for Great Music
If you are looking for the best quality smart speaker that promises the best sound and you don’t mind splurging on a good device, then the new 3rd Generation Amazon Echo Show 10 would be an excellent option for you.
While it costs a bit more than most other smart speakers, the Echo Show 10 by Amazon is one of the most comprehensive, high-performance smart speakers based on Alexa. It promises the best quality of sound, but you get to do a lot more with this speaker thanks to the large 10inch screen that offers great image quality while also rotating around to follow you throughout the room as it zooms and pans to ensure smooth and consistent image quality.
It’s a great addition to your kitchen, and you could use it for video calls, besides reading and obtaining recipes or watching fun videos online – all these make the speaker a great entertainment device. The best bit is that even when you are not in the speaker’s immediate view, invoking Alexa means that the screen turns towards you immediately. Alexa will also keep you entertained thanks to its impressive knowledge base and the fact that it always offers the smartest responses. You could also add new skills to Alexa, enhancing its performance and the smartness of your home.
When you like bopping and singing along to your favorite songs while cooking, you will be happy to know that this speaker promises high-quality sound for music thanks to the 360-degrees speaker system.
- Large, high-quality screen for calls, videos, and recipes
- Great sound quality
- The clever rotating feature runs smoothly and quietly
- Looks great
- High image quality
- Its YouTube Integration isn’t one of the best
- Considerably expensive
- Some people consider it to be too Amazon-Centric
Amazon Echo, 4th Generation (2020) – Best Sound and an Incredibly Elegant, Futuristic Look
If you are looking for something different, something that offers the best musical performance and great sound at all times, you may want to try out the newly released 2020 version of the 4th Generation Amazon Echo. This smart Echo speaker boasts the best triple speaker system and also one of the most seamless integrations for your smart home.
One of the things that stands out from this speaker has to be the slightly bigger size of the speaker in comparison to the previous Amazon Echo speakers. Now, although this means dealing with a bigger speaker, the increase in size is because of the beefed-up features and speakers, as well as a change in the shape of the speaker. It has a larger woofer, and there also are two tweeters, which work well to ensure the perfect balance of sound, as well as a higher level of sound clarity. All these features ensure that you have the best speakers for your home or office.
It also boasts the best Alexa capabilities, meaning it responds faster to more queries, and this is made possible by the new learning chip incorporated by Amazon. This chip is an AI function, an AZ1 neural edge processor that allows for the fast processing of the most common voice requests on the device, which also means that it responds to common requests quicker.
In addition to the improved audio, it also features an improved built-in Zigbee smart home hub that improves your home’s ecosystem.
- Seamless integration for your smart home
- High-quality triple speaker system
- Great sound
- Alexa is more efficient
- Elegant, Futuristic design
- Integration with Zigbee hub
- Highly adaptive sound
- The new speaker design might be too big for some people
- The maximum volume isn’t as loud as expected
Google Nest Hub Max – Best Quality Smart Speaker for Audiophiles
If you are looking for an excellent smart speaker that’s not only great for music but also allows you to enjoy an excellent display from a high-quality screen, Google Nest Hub Max would be a great option for you.
This speaker does everything it says it will do, which means that if you need a high-performance full-on Google Assistant that offers great sound for music, this would be an excellent investment for you. The combination of the 10-inch crisp screen that’s the end for squinting and the heavy, good quality and loudspeaker cone leave you with a great home ecosystem that boasts great sound at all times.
Besides using it for video calls, the screen means that the screen/ speaker combo could double up as your home camera system. The highly effective Google Assistant means the creation of an even better smart home ecosystem.
- Excellent sound quality
- The sound has a nice bass
- The screen is big enough for many things
- Works great for video calls
- Google Assistant works great
Amazon Echo Studio with 3D audio and Alexa – Best Smart Speaker with Immersive Sound from Dolby Atmos Integration
The best speakers for music offer the best immersive sound, thanks to functions like Dolby Atmos, but this isn’t always the case with smart speakers. As a result, this Amazon Echo Studio speaker is a one-of-a-kind, high-performance smart speaker that would be a great addition to your home if you love listening to music. This feature also makes this speaker the best sounding Echo smart speaker and also one of the most powerful smart speakers for money for a 330W speaker. It works with Alexa seamlessly, and if you wish to create a more immersive home cinema system, then you could get these speakers.
- Impressive and compelling directional audio
- The sound is clear and loud
- Great value for money given its power and size
- Most advanced Alexa
- 5 drivers, hence stereo sound and also a Dolby Atmos Surround
- The 3D sound output isn’t so good, and you’d need Amazon Music HD for 3D ultra HD music quality.
Buying Guide for the best smart speakers for music
What should you look out for in your smart speaker? While some smart speakers are designed to offer more control over your home and smart devices, meaning they wouldn’t be expected to be so hot when used as music players, there is a good variety of smart speakers that have been build with music in mind. These speakers offer powerful speakers, along with rather delicate audio processing capabilities that ensure perfect tuning of sound. So, what features of the speakers should you look out for in the smart speakers specially designed for playing music?
Types of Smart Speakers
It may seem as if there is just one distinct class of smart speakers, but over the years, the smart speaker types have evolved into three main categories – the smart home speakers, the portable smart speakers, and the smart speakers with displays. The differences?
The smart home speakers
These are more or less like the first smart speakers created, and they were designed for indoor use. These speakers must be plugged into an electrical outlet, and connectivity with your phone or tablet and other smart home devices is WiFi-based. Unfortunately, few of the smart home speakers offer great sound, and they are not ideal for serious music listening. The newer versions, however, appear to offer better sound than their predecessors.
Portable smart speakers
These speakers make a big bulk of the smart speakers on the market today, with the best bit being that these speakers are manufactured by leading brands such as Sonos, JBL, and Ultimate Ears. The portable speakers are rechargeable as they are powered by batteries, and their enclosures can be waterproof or water-resistant. These speakers are often fondly referred to as Bluetooth speakers. For use at home, these devices must be connected to your home WiFi network, which allows for their connectivity with the rest of your home devices.
Smart Speakers with Displays
The new kids on the block in the world of smart speakers are made up of an intelligent category of highly sophisticated speakers that feature a display screen for increased functions and overall performance. The display screens on these speakers mean that you can video call your loved ones and read recipes easily, or even just watch videos while working or cooking.
What this means is that before you settle on a specific design of smart speakers, you’d have to think of the functions you’d want to enjoy from the speaker. In addition to the connectivity features, the speaker you will be looking for should also provide the best sound capabilities.
The most common options for Voice assistants for the smart speakers are Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, which means that for most people, the options of smart speakers are between these two options. Note that although Apple’s Siri is a good option, it isn’t common in most of the smart speakers on the market, and also, it might not be the most capable option.
The reason for the popularity of Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant has to do with the fact that these two voice assistants boast an impressive capacity to play music, albeit comprehensively. They also offer a good level of control for your smart home and connected devices.
So, Google Assistant or Alexa
Alexa is a preferable option for most people as it offers a greater degree of flexibility while also allowing for the addition of many cool abilities and capabilities. Google Assistant, on the other hand, integrates quite well with the entire Google ecosystem, meaning that if you prefer Google Services, then a smart speaker with Google Assistant support might be a better choice for you.
That said, if you are not interested in the most advanced ecosystems or extra nifty skills, then you could pick either smart speaker voice assistant. In such cases, your decision would come down to the speaker’s hardware, specifically the size, audio quality, design, and any other additional features of the hardware. An additional smart hub or a screen, for example, would be a wonderful addition if you are looking for more advanced management and control of your home.
Size – when it comes to the quality of the sound, the general rule of thumb is this – the bigger the speaker, the higher the quality of sound.
The smart speaker’s best component is the microphone, which means that your best smart speaker for music must have the best mic setup to be able to pick voices from various sounds which can be heard across the room.
Capability in creating a reliable smart speaker ecosystem
Creating an effective ecosystem is an important thing to bear in mind when it comes to smart speakers because the smart speaker is intended to work as the main hub in a bigger digital ecosystem throughout your home. To create that hub, the first thing you will need is a mobile app on your tablet or smartphone, a solution that will make it possible for you to perform the most basic setups.
The good news is that most of the smart speaker models around work in concert with the best of the cloud-based AI devices/ elements which control everything from the music you stream to the speaker’s ability to interface with the rest of the smart devices in your home – these would range from your smart fridges and multicookers to smart bulbs among others. So, as you search for the best smart speaker system for streaming music, ensure that the option you choose allows you to run the rest of your smart home with ease.
How do I talk to my smart speaker?
Essentially, all smart speakers can be summoned with specific wake words like Alexa or Hey Google for Alexa and Google devices, respectively. And you can give commands once it starts to listen. For the best performance, make sure to ask simple and straightforward questions.
If you want a smart speaker whose voice assistant recognizes natural language, choose one with Google Assistant. Siri also works well, but as mentioned above, the speakers with this voice assistant aren’t great for playing music.
How does a smart speaker sound?
When it comes to playing music, the speaker only plays music from your phone or tablet or whatever device is connected to it, but if you depend on voice commands, then the speaker will rely on cloud services like Spotify, TuneIn, or Pandora. Google Assistant speakers offer excellent performance, too, as they connect to YouTube and Google Play.
Most of these speakers also support Bluetooth connectivity, meaning that you can stream audio from your phone, computer, or tablet.
The 5 smart speakers reviewed above are some of the best smart speaker options for you if you are looking for the best speakers offering great quality music.