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CRUTCHFIELD | Party volume all day long from a rugged bluetooth speaker
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CRUTCHFIELD | Party volume all day long from a rugged bluetooth speaker

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Bluetooth speakers are a lot of fun, especially during the summer months. They bring the party with you to the beach or to the lake. But not all Bluetooth speakers perform equally outdoors.

Bluetooth speakers are a lot of fun, especially during the summer months. They bring the party with you to the beach or to the lake. But not all Bluetooth speakers perform equally outdoors. There are big differences in how long and how loud different speakers can play.


Over the years I’ve listened to a ton of different Bluetooth speakers. I’ve found that for a portable speaker to deliver party-level volume outside all day, it needs to have a huge battery and lots of power. It also needs to withstand rain, sand, and the occasional spilled drink.


That’s where the DreamWave Tremor is in a league of its own. Not only does it sound fantastic, but it’s built for the outdoors. And after spending a few days with it, it’s now my go-to speaker for future adventures.


Enjoy music outside all day long

When my family goes to the beach, we love listening to music while soaking up the sun. This is where the Tremor shines its brightest. It’s designed to play at high volume levels outside for hours on end. This is possible because of its massive 20,800 milliampere-hours battery. That’s more than triple the battery capacity of most of the Bluetooth speakers we carry — many of which are under 5,000 mAh.

This enormous power capacity is what helps the Tremor outperform other Bluetooth speakers. Not only does it have a bigger engine than other speakers, it has a much larger gas tank too. This lets the Tremor play at high volume levels without distortion for extended amounts of time. It generates the kind of deep, accurate bass that’s just not possible with smaller speakers, especially outside.


Built for all-weather conditions

The Tremor feels and handles like a speaker designed for having fun outside. It sports a rugged design and tough outer shell. The first thing I noticed when I picked the Tremor up is its heft. The huge internal battery and heavy-duty construction make it heavier than any other Bluetooth speaker I’ve tested. At 12.5 pounds, the Tremor is no lightweight. But its built-in nylon carrying strap makes transport simple.

The Tremor is IPX5 certified, which makes it resistant to water, dust, sand, and snow. It’s also shockproof. I discovered just how rugged the Tremor is when I accidentally dropped it in the Crutchfield parking lot. I had an “uh oh” moment when it smacked the pavement. But after quickly looking it over I couldn’t find a scratch. It fired right up and played flawlessly.


Keep your smartphone or tablet charged

I took the Tremor home for a few days to do some listening. The feature I found most useful was the USB charging port on the back panel. I was able to keep my Samsung Galaxy® S5 topped off throughout my listening sessions. I loved that I could stream music from my phone for hours, and still walk away with a freshly charged battery. That’s a powerful feature when outside and not close to any power outlets.


Crystal-clear Bluetooth streaming

The Tremor sports the latest 4.0 Bluetooth protocols including aptX ® for high-fidelity music streaming. I played Sean Hayes’ “Alabama Chicken” from my S5’s Spotify library. I was impressed by the accurate squeak of the guitar strings as Hayes moved up and down the fretboard. The fiddle solo came through with clarity and enthusiasm. And when the bass guitarist plucked out low, deep notes the Tremor faithfully reproduced them.

I also streamed Shady Grove by Jerry Garcia and David Grisman. This album features up-tempo, nuanced acoustic guitar licks. It’s complemented by an energetic mandolin and a five-string banjo. The Tremor’s precision during the fast runs was impressive. It actually made me want to get up and dance. The next time I’m camping at a music festival, this is the speaker I want to jam out to by the fire.


My firsthand testing outdoors

To see how the Tremor sounded in an outdoor summer environment, I headed over to a local park that has a lake. I rolled out my beach towel and hit play. I was impressed by the quality of the output at high volume — I never did find a distortion point. The Tremor produced an incredible amount of bass in such a wide-open space.


To test its water-resistance, I sprayed the Tremor with a water bottle mid-song. It never missed a beat. It continued to perform flawlessly, even while having water poured onto it.


Premium speaker and amplifier construction

What makes the Tremor so robust is the quality of its internal components. It uses a stout 50-watt amplifier that powers two full-range drivers. Its impressive bass response is reinforced by two passive radiators, which move in tandem with the powered drivers. Anti-distortion circuitry means you can crank the Tremor up all the way and not worry about damaging it.


NFC pairing for compatible smartphones

If your phone or tablet has NFC capability, simply turn on that feature and place your device on the NFC logo on the left side of the Tremor. It will automatically pair with the speaker, getting your Bluetooth streaming up and running quickly.


Easy-to-use buttons

There’s something to be said for simplicity. With four large, easy-to-read buttons, the Tremor makes playback easy. I didn’t need the manual to pair my phone or play my music. But the instructions are compact and easy to take with you for reference.


Plug in any portable device

The Tremor has a 3.5mm auxiliary connection that can be used with any device’s headphone output. If you have an iPod® Classic with a large high-resolution music library, simply plug it in and hit play. You can also connect a portable DVD player and enjoy great dialogue and convincing sound effects on the go.


Pair two Tremors together for even better sound

Want to create a low-footprint hi-fi system without a receiver or any speaker wire? Wirelessly pair two Tremors together as a stereo pair. In this configuration, one speaker becomes the left channel, and the other becomes the right channel. You’ll have an elite wireless system that sounds like there’s a live band on stage in front of you.


Make your summer more fun

When I spoke to a DreamWave rep, he mentioned how popular the Tremor has become in the world of motor sports. It’s widely used with ATVs and other off-road vehicles. It’s also popular at car shows and military bases because it provides great music for a big audience.


If you’re going to listen to music outside this summer, I encourage you to take the DreamWave Tremor along with you. This speaker offers a lot of fun and it’s pretty much life-proof. You’ll have the best music around at the beach, pool, or campground. Have a boat? Take it on the water with you the next time you ski or fish.