The 5 Best Marine Speakers 2017

Just because you like the ocean breeze in your face and the smell of salt air doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be able to enjoy some good music as well. Sure, you could use your phone or other audio device, but a speaker is always going to be better, especially if you have a couple of people onboard with you. However, ordinary speakers are rarely up to the task of going along on a boat trip. Luckily there are some very good marine speakers that are designed specifically for your watery escapades. These speakers must not only be durable enough to withstand the elements, but also loud enough so they are not drowned out by the sound of the boat or other noises.

With marine speakers bigger is not always better as some people simply want some background music and don’t plan on holding any parties. This means that there are actually a few very affordable marine speakers that offer plenty of value for money. Here are five of the best marine speakers that we have no qualms recommending.

1. Kenwood KFC-1652MRW 6.5-Inch Two-Way Marine Speaker System

Kenwood KFC-1652MRWTwo-Way Marine Speakers

For an affordable pair of marine speakers that can withstand the rigors of boating the Kenwood KFC-1652MRW system is hard to beat. Kenwood is a well-known and established brand, of course, and since these are marine speakers you can be sure that they are optimized to work great on a boat. It features a waterproof polypropylene cone as well as a UV resistant grille and frame, which means bad weather has very little impact on it. Each of the two speakers in this set has a 1” balanced dome tweeter that is built right into the grill

Installing these speakers are a breeze and included in the box are a cut-out template for where to drill holes if these don’t match the holes left behind by your previous speakers. The speed-clips and self-tapping screws needed for the installation are also all in the box.

You’ll hear a world of difference when upgrading from an older, stock pair of speakers to these ones as the sound quality is excellent. All the highs on these speakers are crisp while the bass is quite impressive too. The Kenwood KF-1652MRW speaker system is a great example of why buying the best speakers for your boat doesn’t necessarily mean you have to pay the highest prices. These speakers look good, sound great and are durable enough for even the most demanding marine conditions.

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2. Infinity Reference 612m 6.5-Inch 225-Watt High-Performance 2-Way Marine Loudspeaker

Infinity Reference 612m 225-Watt 2-Way Marine Loudspeaker

Infinity has made quite a name for themselves in the car audio market, but this marine speaker is just as impressive. To ensure that your music is not interrupted by the elements these speakers feature lightweight and stiff cones that are made from Polypropylene and sealed for extra protection. The rubber surrounds for the woofer not only absorbs distortion, but is also UV-resistant, so they won’t crumble after exposure to sunlight. Rounding out the package is a corrosion-proof polymer basket, leads that are treated against moisture contamination and stainless steel mounting hardware.

In addition to being durable the Infinity 612m is also a good looking speaker and it the grille has been treated in order to retain its finish. This means the Infinity 612m is able to shrug off sunlight, salt and water without taking damage or sacrificing audio quality. Even without the use of an amp these speakers sound great, although you can connect them to one for even more volume. The speakers are also capable of pushing out these high volumes without distorting. Thanks to the design of the grille, the speaker remains protected without impeding the sound, although this also means that the grille cannot be removed.

Installing the speakers is as easy as can be, although those replacing 4-hole speakers will have to drill an additional hole as these require five. The speakers ship with a cardboard insert that act as a cut-out template, so drilling the hole in the right spot is very straightforward.

If you are looking for high quality sound that won’t let you down even in tough conditions, but don’t want to break the bank, you’ll want to check out these speakers.

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3. JBL MS6200 6.5-Inch 2-Way Marine Speakers

JBL MS6200 2-Way Marine Speakers

JBL is another top notch brand with a good reputation for quality speakers and the MS6200 is definitely no exception. The MS6200 is one of their top sellers in the marine speaker category and it is easy to see why. Although not as loud as the Infinity 612M, the MS6200 is still a pretty powerful speaker considering it is only 6.5” big.

The MS6200 is designed to blend in, not stand out, so it looks a little plain compared to other marine speakers. However, the flat grill offers decent protection to the tweeter and woofer while the frame is UV and water resistant. Of course, the cone is made from polypropylene as well to withstand the elements. The mounts are made from stainless steel and the speakers use a sealed magnetic system, so there is no danger of salt water causing any corrosion. As with all non-detachable grills the speaker is a little difficult to clean, but this is a common issue with marine speakers.

This speaker is able to deliver some good highs as well as decent lows thanks to the basket design. So, if you are looking for a lot of low end frequency response the MS6200 is the way to go in this price range. Thanks to the white gel coat finish of these speakers, they also look great when installed on most boats and not out of place like certain other designs.

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4. BOSS AUDIO MR50W Marine 5.25″ 2-way 150-watt Full Range Speakers

BOSS AUDIO MR50W 2-way 150-watt Marine Speakers

The Boss Audio MR50W is another speaker that has found a lot of fans amongst the marine crowd. This speaker features polypropylene woofer cone that has treated cloth surround, which means it is durable and sounds great. Connecting the cone to the basket is a rubber surround while the tweeter is made from Mylar. In addition, the voice coil of the speaker is made from aluminum and all the major components are treated to offer protection from corrosion. Bear in mind that this speaker is water resistant, not water proof, so do drop it overboard!

Mounting the MR50W is as easy as can be thanks to the included template and replacing older speakers with these can be done in a matter of minutes. What impressed me the most about these speakers is the fact that they are able to hold their own against more expensive products, such as the Infinity Reference 612m. These speakers are able to deliver clear and crisp sounds, even at higher volumes, while the bass is also quite good.

If you are looking to listen to some music or radio while out fishing or cruising on your boat then the MR50W is hard to beat in its price class. If you plan on throwing any parties or really want to crank the volume you might be better off with a more expensive speaker though.
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5. Polk Audio AA2652-A MM651UM 6.5-Inch Coax Ultra Marine Speaker

Polk Audio AA2652-A MM651UM Coax Ultra Marine Speaker

If money is not an issue then, the MM651UM from Polk Audio is the marine speaker to get. This is simply one of the loudest marine speakers that are currently available, so anyone that want to get a party started on their boat need one of these.

This speaker features a completely sealed front design, which means no water is getting inside. It has a rugged, built-on grille with a tweeter mount, so there is no need for a traditional tweeter post. The sealed crossover assembly is also built into the back of the magnet and it comes with heavy duty steel input terminals. The components of this speaker are all noncorrosive and waterproof, having passed all the tests for ASTM certification. Salt spray, UV rays, and fog pose no obstacle to these speakers and even water isn’t an issue. With the woven glass composite construction of the tweeter and the carbon composite basket and grille, this speaker is tough, but lightweight.

One of the most impressive features of this speaker is that all of its components feature Klippel optimization. The result is unmatched audio performance that leaves most other marine speakers trailing in its wake. Even if you are an audiophile, there is nothing about the audio quality to complain about. Throughout the entire frequency range you’ll find balanced, detailed and full audio.

Statistics can’t’ really convey how great this speaker is, but suffice to say its sensitivity rating is 92 decibels and its continuous power handling is 100 RMS watts. Simply put, this speaker is loud and you’ll have no trouble hearing it from anywhere on your boat.

The speaker is easy to install as its cutout diameter is 5.06”, making it ideal to replace most stock speakers. It also has a shallow mounting depth, which increases its versatility. Of course, all wiring and mounting screws are stainless steel, eliminating the risk of corrosion. The MM651UM is the most expensive marine speaker on this list, but in this case you really get what you pay for.
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