Features January 2008 Issue

VHF Exterior Speakers Test: Can You Hear Me Now?

Exterior speakers can increase sound level, enhance audio quality and boost your boat’s ability to transmit and receive away from a mounted VHF system. Practical Sailor compares 12 different units.

Practical Sailor tested a dozen external speakers compatible as add-ons to cabin-bound VHF radios. Testers looked at the overall performance, including the sound quality and maximum output, of each unit along with cost and warranty. All speakers were also subjected to a spray test to determine corrosion resistance. We tested three models from marine audio system experts Poly-Planar and three from antenna giant Shakespeare. Standard Horizon had two entries, and Speco One had two. We rounded out the field with one speaker from SeaBowld and one from Icom. We selected a top pick in both the conventional and horn-style exterior speakers.

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