Motorcycle Stereo System, Sound Systems & Speakers – Expert Reviews

Best motorcycle sound systems

(Last Updated: September, 2020)

What Changed?

  • Added Lexin Waterproof Motorcycle Speakers
  • Removed discontinued products
  • Updated pros & cons on Boss Audio MCB420B

When it comes to enjoying your ride, music is one thing that always takes things to the next level. Wearing headphones when you ride a motorcycle can be dangerous, so we decided to test a handful of the best motorcycle sound systems. 

During this test, we looked at things like ease of use, quality, and other factors like water resistance and battery life. Here are the results of those test. 

According to these tests, the best motorcycle stereo system is the Boss Audio MC470B. They are weatherproof, high quality speakers that are ease to install, use bluetooth motorcycle technology, and comes with a class D amplifier system. 

Motorcycle Sound System

After testing over 15 of the most popular motorcycle sound systems, we settled on these for our top 5 choices.

Top 5 Best Motorcycle Sound Systems:

More About BOSS Audio MC470B

If you're looking for a great pair of high quality motorcycle speakers, these should absolutely be on your radar. 

Designed by BOSS Audio, these speakers are both sleek and functional. They are available in two modern colors and in packs of two or four speakers, all of which can be plugged into smartphones, iPods, and MP3 players. Alternatively, you can use Bluetooth motorcycle technology to transmit audio.

These speakers are easy to install, and for the price, are an incredible steal. The sound quality is phenomenal for the price.

These weatherproof speakers are easy to use, and provide a full-range of sound that you'll be able to hear over loud pipes. The volume controls can be installed wherever you want, making this set of speakers especially easy to use on any bike. 

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Pros

  • Excellent quality sound, & comes with a class D channel amplifier
  • Bluetooth / Wireless Compatible
  • Weatherpoof &  Marine Grade

Cons

  • A 4 motorcycle speaker setup could be cumbersome on smaller motorcycles

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Boss  MCBK420B

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Boss  ATV30BRGB

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More About The Lexin Weatherproof Motorcycle Speakers

Stylish casings house the genius inner workings of these speakers. Available in chrome and black, they use a 200W amplifier, Bluetooth motorcycle stereo radio, and a USB powered charging system that allows you to charge compatible devices on the go.

They are complete with weatherproofing and a 100W peak per channel amplifier output, making them ideal for riding in strong, stormy conditions. The speaker system comes with an easy-to-use jog dial and complete wiring harness, making installation easy.

These speakers work great for sport bike, or cruises like a Harley Davidson.

Pros

  • RCA output for subwoofer
  • Included USB charging capabilities
  • Complete wiring harness

Cons

  • May not be suitable for extremely loud motorcycles

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Boss  ATV30BRGB

Boss Audio ATV30BRGB

More About The Sound Storm SMC70B Motorcycle Sound System

The Sound Storm SMC70B  is a great option if you want your stereo to do more than just produce sound. With speakers powered by quality amplifiers, this system is ideal for both GPS usage and your favorite music.

They can connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth to play your favorite tunes. They can also connect directly to the speakers through the auxiliary port on your smartphone or iPod. This model comes in two sleek colors.

In addition to being versatile in terms of use, they’re also weatherproof, giving you the freedom to ride in whichever type of weather you choose.

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Pros

  • High volume output
  • Weatherproof design
  • Can be used with Bluetooth devices

Cons

  • Not strong enough to support large devices such as subwoofers

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Boss  ATV30BRGB

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More About The Pyle PLMCA51BT

This Bluetooth audio capable set of speakers is perfect for mounting on scooters, Vespas, UTVs, and motorcycles. Its silver-plated chrome bullet style is modern and looks sharp when mounted onto the handlebars of your bike, UTV,  ATV, or scooter as handlebar speakers.

Included with the speakers is all of the necessary mounting and installation materials, including universal mounting brackets, taking the guesswork out of installation. In terms of sound, the PLMCA51BT is ideal as it reproduces the full range of stereo sounds. To ensure the longevity of your system, it is water resistant and weatherproof.

Pros

  • Waterproof design
  • Full range of high performance sound
  • Easy Installation
  • Modern, bullet-style

Cons

  • Some engines overshadow the speaker sounds

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More About The BOSS Audio MCBK420B Motorcycle Speakers

The BOSS Audio MCBK420B is a full range motorcycle sound system that offers hands-free use and protection against the elements. It is Bluetooth compatible and can be used with most smartphones and your favorite music devices thanks to its conveniently located auxiliary port.

The system’s crystal clear sound can be controlled through the wired remote volume control which is located in an easy-to-access location for volume adjustments that are both safe and easy, while the entire system can be mounted with incredible ease due to its sturdy hardware.

Pros

  • Wireless Bluetooth capabilities
  • Remote volume control
  • Auxiliary port for versatile listening

Cons

  • Thin audio wires

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Do You Need Motorcycle Speakers?

Bluetooth headsets are a wonderful thing. However, when it comes to riding a motorcycle and listening to your favorite music, they’re not the best option. Why? They can be hard to route without damaging your helmet, which is an essential component of motorcycle safety.

Despite being relatively sleek, they are also bulky when squished underneath any well-fitting helmet, and sometimes don't fit in a half helmet like you might wear on a Harley Davidson. This can make them not only unsafe but annoying as well.

Luckily, you have another option - motorcycle speakers and motorcycle audio systems. Motorcycle speakers are specifically designed to be used on motorcycles. They are simply mounted on or in between the bike’s handlebars as handlebar speakers, where they are out of the way but still easy to access.

Unlike Bluetooth headphones or earbuds, motorcycle bluetooth speakers can deliver a clear, high-quality sound without the hassle of difficult installation or the discomfort of a helmet that, due to the earbuds, is too tight or not tight enough. 

These handy speakers are becoming more and more popular among serious motorcyclists. This being said, you may be considering purchasing your own device. If so, you’ll want to know how to choose the best device, how to install said system, and be given a few great recommendations.

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How to Choose A Sound System For Your Motorcycle

Choosing the right motorcycle audio system or bluetooth speakers isn’t as simple as just buying what your best friend recommends or what you think you can afford. There are many more aspects that go into making an informed decision.

The factors you consider before making a purchase will determine the quality of your speaker and how happy you are with your choice in the long run. It’s a good idea to have a checklist of things to keep in mind when browsing the shelves for a new speaker system.

We understand that buying a new speaker system is a big decision that can either be a blessing or an expensive mistake. That’s why we’ve put together a short list of the most important things to think about.

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Sound quality

One of the most important parts of having a speaker is high-quality sound. Trying to listen to your favorite music over the loud roaring of the engine can be a challenge. The sound that your stereo puts out needs to be able to compete with the engine as well as traffic and outside noise.

The system you purchase needs to emit a powerful, clear sound. This being said, many smaller speakers sacrifice sound quality for visual appeal, meaning that many small, compact, “cutesy” speakers will have a volume range that is much too quiet for use on the road.

Weight and size

Motorcycles are designed to operate in such a way that weight is distributed evenly, making them safe to ride. If you install a speaker that is too big and bulky or weighs too much, you're likely to throw the motorcycle off balance, increasing your odds of falling victim to a crash.

Size comes into play when you consider the location of your speakers. If your handlebar speakers are too big, they can get in the way of your hand placement, which can make you lose control of your bike.

Waterproof/Weatherproof

Don’t make the mistake of trying to use car or home audio speakers on your motorcycle. Speakers that are designed to be used indoors will not do well when used outside- especially if weather conditions are humid or rainy. Moisture will seep into the electrical components of your speakers and cause them to short, rendering your speakers useless.

You’ll need to buy a speaker that is designed for outdoor use and specifically states that it’s safe for use under wet conditions.

Bluetooth capability

Another useful thing to consider when it comes to deciding on a set of speakers is whether or not they are capable of using Bluetooth. For those who don’t use Bluetooth speakers, this won’t apply, but if you do, you’ll want to ensure that your speakers off Bluetooth connectivity.

For Bluetooth fans, a Bluetooth capable speaker system is beneficial in many ways. It can be used for streaming music from Pandora or Spotify, but can also be used to navigate using GPS.

Warranty

You want your motorcycle speakers to last years. They should be able to withstand years of regular use before needing to be fixed or replaced. Regardless of whether you opt for a speaker system that is higher or lower on the price spectrum, you’ll want to invest in a system that offers a warranty.

A good warranty will cover things such as weather related damage (providing, of course, that the speakers are meant to be used outdoors), and electrical problems. Some extended warranties might even cover accidental damage, as well. However, extended warranties are often an extra expense.

How to Install A Stereo On Your Motorcycle

To start the process, you need to choose a stereo that is compatible with your motorcycle and is easy to install.

Next, you need to strap or bolt the system onto your bike as directed by the stereo's instructions. A bolt-on stereo will usually come with the required hardware.

Now, you’ll need to place the audio power wire from the system. Do this by running the audio power wire underneath of your tank, and try to conceal the wiring completely if possible. Use electrical tape to secure the wiring every few inches and, if you have extra wire, bundle it and tape it securely.

Place the stereo speakers using angle brackets, placing them so they are concealed underneath frame mounts. Place them so they sit securely against a hard surface.

Run the audio wiring (not the power wiring) just as you did the power wiring, concealing it and taping it into place.

Lastly, you’ll need to make any necessary adjustments to your system’s sound settings. Double check the bass, fade, and treble adjustments, ensuring that you’re happy with the sound quality and settings. If you’re unsatisfied, use your stereo’s directions to make changes.

The right set of motorcycle speakers can make a world of difference on long rides. They can give you something to focus on, relax with, and think about. Choosing a speaker, however, can be a challenge - but it doesn’t have to be.

It’s important to note that not every system will work for every rider. Try a number of models and brands before deciding, if you have to. Use this guide as a reference and make the decision easier.

Freqenty Asked Questions

How do you install motorcycle speakers?

The specific installation instructions will vary from product to product. Generally speaking the first step is to mount the stereo in an area that you can access it, it gets power, and the sound is adequate. After that, run the wiring and mounting any individual speakers in an area of your choosing. Make sure to use electrical tape to secure any exposed wiring. 

Where do you ground an aftermarket motorcycle stereo?

If there aren't specific instructions with your stereo, and the stereo is not already grounded, you can ground it by securing the ground wire to screw. 

How many watts do I need for my stereo?

The average stereo gives off about 10-15 watts of power per speaker. For some louder bikes, this isn't enough to hear your music at cruising speeds. If you have a loud bike, look for a product with at least 300 watts of power.

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