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Edifier R1280T Bookshelf Speaker Review (Active Speaker – Best Under 200)

Edifier R1280T active Bookshelf Speaker review

Edifier R1280T active Bookshelf Speaker reviewWhen you’re on a budget, getting an audio device that offers good performance for your PC or home stereo may seem impossible, but that couldn’t farther from the truth.

Don’t believe us? Check Edifier’s R1280T active bookshelf speakers. The beautiful stereo pair is affordable, compact, and offers a bright, vibrant, balanced sound signature with an adjustable equalizer. It does check all the boxes, doesn’t it?

If you’re interested in knowing more about these powered bookshelf speakers, here’s our detailed review.

Edifier R1280T Bookshelf Speaker: Pros and Cons

Pros

Review Pros
  • It’s active; no need for an amplifier
  • The sound is warm, balanced, and loud
  • Separate bass & treble controls
  • Excellent build quality for the price
  • Easy to hook up & comes with remote

Cons

Review Cons
  • At this price point it’s hard to find any cons!
  • The highs are lacking in terms of clarity
  • The bass is lacking in terms of depth

Exterior Design and Build Quality

For a pair of bookshelf speakers in the 100-buck price range, the Edifier R1280T boasts a pretty nice design that would allow it to fit nicely in any home or office décor. Each cabinet boasts a matte metallic finish on the top with wood veneer paneling on the sides. On the front panel, you’ll find a detachable grille that’s gray cloth with a four-inch woofer and 13mm silk dome tweeter and a back panel with a number of connectivity options.

Edifier-R1280T-book-shelf-speaker-connectivity
Edifier R1280T bookshelf speakers are active – no amplifier/receiver required.

Each of the units measures 9.2 inches in height by 5.7 inches in width by 7.7 inches in depth. The Edifier R1280T weighs roughly 11 pounds, making it one of the lightest, most compact bookshelf models available today.

Edifier R1280T Sound Quality

High-End

The high frequencies are where the Edifier R1280T excel. These bookshelf speakers produce well-detailed highs with an adjustable quantity. The treble on the upper end has a somehow thinner character, but it’s still well-balanced and can retain texture and avoid wood stick phenomenon.

Low-End

Although the bass that these speakers isn’t the tightest, they still offer a well-balanced bass response with a slower decay. Of course, it’s not the punchiest of bass responses, but that’s expected considering the size of the cabinets, and it’s still smooth and room-filling as you’d expect from a bookshelf speaker.

Mids

Mids are also a strength of Edifier’s R1280T bookshelf speaker as they can produce a smooth, well-balanced response within the midrange frequencies for well-reproduced vocals and acoustic music, making these speakers great for jazz, indie, and similar genres.

Watching movies

The R1280T bookshelf speakers have the ability to reproduce vocals in an intimate and smooth manner, which means that you can enjoy all of your movies and TV shows without worrying about the lack of sound effects.

Packaging and Accessories

The Edifier R1280T bookshelf speakers are packed well and come with everything you need to get them hooked up and good to go in no time. Inside the package, you’ll find the stereo pair, an RCA-RCA cable, an AUX-RCA cable, the speaker interconnect wires, an infrared remote controller, and a clearly-written user manual, although you won’t need the documentation to set everything up.

Edifier-R1280T-bookshelf-speaker-in-the-box
The Edifier R1280T comes complete with everything you need.

Verdict

The Edifier R1280T bookshelf speaker isn’t the best of the best, but for the price you’re paying, it’s hard to argue with the quality, and it’s definitely easy to turn a blind eye to the few niggles that come with this device. If you’re looking for clear sounds (amplifier-inclusive!) that cost less than many people spend on a night out at the pub, it’s really hard to find something that beats the Edifier R1280T in performance.

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At time of review, the Edifier R1280T featured in our Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $100″ category, and even sneaked into “Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $200“. Please check above for latest price and user reviews.

You Might Be Interested: DIY Guide: How to Connect an Equalizer to an Amplifier

Klipsch RB 61 II Review

Klipsch-rb-61-ii

Are you looking for a new loudspeaker to invest in? One that would give the best imaging and optimal soundstage? A pair of RB 61 may be the perfect addition to your home. A set packs a lot of power and features for low cost. What more can you ask for, right? Read on to see more of our Klipsch RB 61 II review.

Klipsch RB-61 II Reference Series Bookshelf Loudspeakers, Black (Pair)
  • A great balance of performance, size and value
  • Fills medium-sized rooms with outstanding sound reproduction

When it comes to audio, Klipsch has got to be one of the legends out there with regards to audio speakers. With some of their products coming from as far back as the old school days of hi-fi, it seems as though this brand has been through many trials.

They have developed their own horn technology, which helps to produce precise and clear audio for their loudspeaker series. Using the horn will enable less distortion. This has certainly earned them points from their customers, and made them rise above their competition and showing the power of their brand.

Klipsch RB 61 II Review
The Klipsch RB61

Another of the reasons they continue to deserve a lot of credit is for their constant attempts to improve their products and adapt to the industry, more so for always giving a fair price for their products.

One of their notable creations is the RB 61 from their Reference series. This generation of technology promises to give you the best sound quality for your music and shows.

This piece of audio speaker definitely worth investing in. It’s also important to note that this is the only brand represented twice on our best bookshelf speakers under $500 list (it could very easily have appeared 3 times!).

So, stay tuned and keep reading our review of this top of the line bookshelf loudspeaker from Klipsch!

Klipsch RB 61 II Summary

Pros

Pros
  • The best feature about the RB 61 II is its dynamics and overall sound “warmth”. It’s great for listening to music, whether you prefer jazz or heavy metal..
  • In addition to music, the RB 61s range means it’s great for movies and TV – just connect it to your home surround system.
  • It has a very stylish yet discreet design, it is perfect for those who prefer a minimalist aesthetics for their space. It would look at home in a shelf, on top of a cabinet or even on the floor. No kids? Take the grill off and expose those lovely cones!

Cons

Cons
  • It’s slightly larger, standing at 6.25 inches in height. This is higher than other units which offer similar performance. If you don’t have enough space for your home theater, or on your shelf-height, you might end up having trouble placing it in the best position. If you want, you can check out the RB 51, which is only 5.25 inches..

Klipsch RB 61 II Specifications

Watts RMS100 Watts
Speaker MaterialMDF, covered by black vinyl
Subwoofer Size6.5″
Frequency Response45Hz-24KHz
Crossover Frequency1500 Hz
Speaker typeBookshelf
ColorBlack Ash, Cherry
Mounting TypeBookshelf
ConnectionsWired
Power100 W RMS / 400 W Peak
EnclosureBass-reflex via front-firing port
InputsDual binding posts / bi-wire / bi-amp
Dimensions15.4 x 8.5 x 12.3″ with grille (39.1 x 21.6 x 31.2 cm)
Weight35.2 lb (16 kg) per pair

General information about the Klipsch RB-61 II

One of the very first things we need to mention is the amazing and pure quality sound that these speakers produce. The RB-61 II is excellent in this department. It delivers fully defined sound, balanced in a way that makes it a pleasure for your ears to enjoy each tune.

Many owners are particularly happy with the bass sound it produces. Other speakers from their competition cannot produce much of this sound compared to the the RB 61.

This particular bookshelf loudspeaker uses a tractrix horn in order to boost the tweeter, which gives the highs a real edge. For other brands, bi amping may be required to produce a better audio.

In bi amping, you connect your speakers to an external amplifier or receiver to achieve clearer sound. That is not needed for the RB 61, as the horn technology already allows you to have a more crisp audio without any disturbance. But if you do want to try, you can easily connect the binding posts to a receiver or amplifier.

Another feature worth mentioning is the impressive audio clarity. You’ll notice that once you start to move into the mids the tone gets wider, but with no bumps in sight. We must also say that vocals sound astonishing!

One of the biggest worries of potential bookshelf speakers buyers is the low-end response. However, the RB 61 II has that covered. Using a 6.5″ woofer, the bass does its thing in a perfect manner. It makes low-end response defined, fulfilling and thick.

The RB-61 II has simple, yet stylish design. The cabinets are firm and made of the best MDF, covered by black vinyl. The front face is designed in a way that makes it seem like it’s genuinely floating, mainly due to the baffle that that makes up the entire front side of the speaker cabinet.

When building this model, the manufacturer stayed loyal to their classical black and bronze theme, which proved to be a hit with previous versions.

Klipsch RB 61 II

Most important features of the RB-61 II

If there is one more thing that stands out with the RB-61 II, that’s the amazing combination of hardware.

The woofer takes the form of a 6.5′ cone which is highly responsive. You’ll find the enhanced titanium tweeter sitting comfy in the tractrix horn. These two transducers, when combined, have the power of 100 Watts RMS.The light Cerametallic woofer cones also have aluminum in them to ensure that any audio warping is kept to a more minimal level.

Another useful feature is the front firing port, which is located under the woofer and consolidated right into the baffle. Wherever you position your speakers, you won’t have to worry any more about the distance from the walls near it, thanks to this particular feature.

Klipsch RB-61 II Alternatives

1. Moukey Passive Bookshelf Speakers

Moukey Passive Bookshelf Speakers

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Take a page from many audiophiles and take a look at what Moukey has to offer. By attaching it to a power amplifier, you can actually make your own karaoke system at home. Although it does not use an acoustic horn like the RB 61, it can still give crisp sound.


2. Polk Audio T15 100

Polk Audio T15 100

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You can still get a home theater experience for less the cost. A lot of those who bought this said that it produced some great bass and clear audio. Polk is also a company that has earned the trust of its users.


3. Edifier R1280T

Edifier R1280T

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The R1280 is a bit more affordable than the RB61. It boasts of a 4-inch bass driver and would make the perfect accessory to your turntable.

Conclusion

We have to end our review by stating the our obvious opinion – you cannot go wrong by choosing it.

Regardless of what your needs are or how large your room is, this model is one of the best bookshelf loudspeaker you can invest in.

Each set comes with a lot of features, from the horn tweeter and more, earning plus points from us here. We particularly love how classic jazz sounds with the RB 61.

Now that we have done our part in explaining to you about features of the RB 61, you can now decide for yourself if it is the brand that is right for you.

But all we can say is that if there’s a brand worth investing in, Klipsch is the name to remember. They not only provide quality products but the efficiency of their customer service is also commendable. They provide firmware updates and drivers for all their loudspeaker and other products.

So, don’t waste your time or money on anything else or in their competition, this product is an excellent choice, especially for a home theater combo. The RB61 will give you the best value for your money. You can be assured that with the RB 61, every bit of audio will be heard.

As it’s proven over time with the countless customer reviews, it offers tremendous sound, excellent performance and durability, and most importantly, impeccable sound.

Klipsch RB-61 II Reference Series Bookshelf Loudspeakers, Black (Pair)
  • A great balance of performance, size and value
  • Fills medium-sized rooms with outstanding sound reproduction

Why not check out the Klipsch RB 61 II on Amazon and see the reviews from other buyer

KEF Q100 Review

Are you on the quest of finding for the perfect bookshelf speaker? Well, search no more! Our KEF Q100 review will help you make that decision in no time. We do this because we, as audiophiles, understand the struggle you have to go through when you’re buying a bookshelf speaker. Luckily for all of us, products like the KEF Q100 exist, and it even made #2 on the list of our top rated bookshelf speakers under 500.

After the release of the Q series in 2011, now even people with lower budgets can enjoy high-quality speakers like the Q100. After all, they were even claimed to have set the sound benchmark for compact loudspeakers very high. Luckily for us, ever since it came out in 2011, the Q series has constantly been improving. Today, some of the most modern and best-sounding speakers are made by KEF. So, keep on reading our KEF Q100 review to see if you this beast of a speaker can satisfy your needs.

KEF q100 speaker for sale

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KEF Q100 Summary

Pros

Pros
  • The Single best thing about the KEF Q100 would be its two-bass reflex design which ensures that the device delivers a rich sound which is both clear and detailed
  • Its sensitivity is top-notch, so you can listen to any genre of music on it, and enjoy them all
  • The Uni-Q driver extends the frequency spectrum while keeping stereo balanced, making the sound have perfect clarity regardless of where you are in the room
  • It’s small size may be more suitable for some environments.

Cons

Cons
  • If there was something bad about the KEF, it would be its weight. At 13lbs, the KEF Q100 looks like it could be a rather basic, lightweight, every-day speaker. The manufacturer could’ve added some materials that make the speaker look and feel sturdier.However it should be remembered that this is one of the smaller bookshelf speakers in this under $500 price range.

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Other Important information about the KEF Q100

The KEF Q100 are the speakers that will never cease to amaze us. They have a great variety of features which simply change the speaker game. For instance, they have a Uni-Q driver array. This part was initially engineered with the purpose of producing accurate sound. As expected, it lived up to its purpose, since the sound it makes is exceptionally clean and accurate, and mimics a three-dimensional soundstage. The sound is evenly distributed to any part of the room, regardless of its size. While the Q100 are sold in pairs, one thing is sure -you will feel as if you are listening to music coming from a professional stereo sound system.

In addition to all of this, the Q100 also have a 5.25-inch Uni-Q driver array. This part also has a one-inch aluminum dome tweeter in its acoustic center. Moreover, this means that the driver has the power it needs in order to provide a clean midrange response. This is all thanks to the braced magnesium and aluminum alloy cone. Moreover, the KEF also features a Z-flex surround which smoothens up the transition to the front panel, ensuring perfectly clean sound comes out. Also, the large dome tweeter makes sure that the speaker has enough sensitivity and handles power in a manner that minimizes distortion. All of this adds to the overall impeccable performance of these amazing speakers.

Most important features of the KEF Q100

Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 Review

There are a lot of bookshelf speakers that seem to have been on the market forever, while getting much less attention that they probably deserve. One of those is the Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 bookshelf speaker. This speaker is a durable, high-end one, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. We cannot even start our Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 review without mentioning its extension, the rich midrange, and the increased bottom end. This is one of those bookshelf speakers that make your home theater or listening environment feel like a professional studio.

If you value good audio during movie time or when you are listening to music, the Diamond 10.2 is definitely an option to consider. It’s also small in size, so great for compact shelves. Keep on reading and learn how you can benefit from owning this masterpiece.

Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 Review
The Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 (black)

Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 Summary

Pros

Pros
  • The Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 delivers the high quality sound it promises.
  • The best thing about this speaker are its rich midrange levels – they will sweep you off your feet.
  • The Diamond brings along a bunch great features, such as its strong construction and great connectivity options.

Cons

Cons
  • At this price, there’s not much not to like. The Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 has a big metal circle on the front panel. Although the circle is there to ensure high quality sound, it could be less shiny, as it might come as a bit of a turn off. If you’re too picky about your home decor keep the grill on.

General information about the Diamond 10.2

The Diamond 10.2 is one of those speakers that can bring a lot to the table, which still being affordable. This bookshelf speaker can simply level-up your home-theater game. It is one of the best models Wharfedale has ever offered, and for all the right reasons. Compared to its predecessor, this speaker has a larger cabinet and driver, among other things. So, although a little bit larger than you would expect it to be, this speaker provides an unimaginable performance.

Design-wise, it’s very nice and sleek, while still keeping that luxurious and modern feel. You shouldn’t have trouble getting it to fit perfectly into any interior – if you’re not a fan of the shiny steel, just keep the cover on. The 10.2 also comes in various colors, which means that you can pick the one that matches your own style, like the Rosewood below.

Wharfedale Diamond 10-2 in Rosewood
Wharfedale Diamond 10-2 in Rosewood

The whole construction is very strong and damage resistant. So, once you invest in this amazing bookshelf speaker, you know that it will likely stay intact for years to come. The surface finish is also damage-resistant, so you can move it around easily without worrying that you’ll do something to it.

Most important features of the Wharfedale Diamond 10.2

The Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 bookshelf speakers can offer very low-end authority, nice mid-range liquidity and that high-end smoothness we all enjoy. With a very rich mid-range, the Wharfedale 10.2 is amazing because it offers real instrumental accuracy. It can provide the sounds that only the pickiest of audiophiles can recognize. We also shouldn’t forget to mention the power that the large woofer can offer. In addition to this, the Diamond features strong cabinet walls which improve the overall performance of this speaker.

Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 Bookshelf Speaker

The secret behind the incredible performance of this bookshelf speaker lies within the custom-made soft-dome tweeter. The tweeter ensures a clear sound at the highest frequencies of up to 30kHz. Moreover, the 6.5-inch woofer and twin rear-firing ports bring up the bottom end and produce a beautiful punch. Other improvements range from a low-profile case to robust cabinet walls. Those, along with a composite front-baffle panel, all add to the decreased vibration, hushed distortion, and enhanced rigidity.

Conclusion

For the end of our Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 review, we would like to add that this neat-looking bookshelf speaker comes with some of the best specs you can get for the price. It may not be the cheapest bookshelf speaker out there, but it certainly isn’t very pricey. Compared to other similarly-priced units, this one can ensure that you get impeccable British sound and great connectivity, all while making your home-theater experience a lot more enjoyable.

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Why not check out the Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 on Amazon and see the reviews from other buyers?

Bose 301 Review

Since the moment the brand was founded by Amar Bose in 1964, it has shown to aim for nothing less than perfection. This is exactly why the successes of this brand are infinite and beyond everyone’s expectations. In this review we will tell you everything there is to know about this incredible pair of bookshelf speakers.

Bose does create sound that perfectly mimics a concert hall, so you shouldn’t expect anything but optimal performance for your music or home theater. That’s true regardless of the material, the sound-field, or artist on the recording. Falling into the “Under $500” category, let’s see if the sonic performance of this speaker is one for you.speaker for sale

Bose 301 Summary

Pros

Pros
  • For some, the greatest thing about the it may be its horizontal design, made to perfectly fit on any home bookshelf
  • It’s equipped with incredible automatic circuitry protection, making it one of the safest bookshelf speakers you can have
  • This bookshelf speaker uses some of Bose’s advanced technology for sound reproduction, which can bring a lot of the punch of a live performance

Cons

Cons
  • Just as it’s a pro for some, it will be a con for others. Although the style appeals to many, I personally prefer the traditional vertical bookshelf speaker
  • What we didn’t like about the Bose 301 is the maintenance it requires. You will probably need to clean the panels every month or so and thus risk damaging the speaker and its longevity

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General information about the Bose 301

Some of the first things that we need to mention in our review is the overall sound quality and amazing performance of these bookshelf speakers. You cannot help but notice the incredible stand-out horizontal design. That’s by no accident, and not just to stand away from the monotonous designs we’re used to seeing. It actually server a purpose and makes the 301 fit on any bookshelf that lacks height.

In addition, they have a very nice spatial dispersion speaker lens. This feature ensures that you have a high-frequency and smooth spatial response. In addition to this, this lens is what makes them perfect for all room sizes, as it ensures a wide distribution of sound. Sound distribution is fairly evenly spread throughout most corners of the room. With the 301, you can expect to hear perfect tones, regardless of where you are standing in your home theater.

Moreover, the design of the 301 is very sleek. With minimally rounded corners and touches of matte design, it will add a piece of sophistication into your room. It also looks quite luxurious, so you will have a modern home without actually overpaying for a pricier bookshelf speaker.

Lastly, in terms of sound quality, there is one thing we won’t forget. This speakers big sound makes you feel as if you are really in the room with the artist themselves. It produces clean and clear sound, with no distortion whatsoever. It is undoubtedly one of the best bookshelf speakers for home theater we’ve taken a look at at this price point.

Most important features of the Bose 301

There are certain features that differentiate the Bose 301 from other, similarly-priced bookshelf speakers. For instance, the 301 offers exceptional performance because it comes with a front left and right speaker. Also, considering the bass reflex design, you can surely expect that the this speaker will have very high impact.

The speakers are small and don’t take up a lot of space, however they will surprise you with the sound they produce. Coming at only 9.75 x 14.25 x 9.75 inches, these bookshelf speakers will bring your home theater or listening space to life. They work with power sources of 10-150 watts and they have receivers ranging from 4 to 8 ohms. 

Bose 301 Bookshelf Speaker

In addition to all this, they have a removable grill which improves the overall look of the speakers. Moreover, their long-excursion 8-inch woofer ensures that you have powerful low frequencies and clean high ones.

More importantly, these bookshelf speakers are remarkably safe. They feature automatic circuitry protection which prevents the drivers from overdrive. This feature also makes sure that you can rely on them, without heat interfering with the audio experience.

Conclusion

We will end our review by saying what we have already heard from other 301 buyers so far and their overwhelming feedback is that coming at this price, these bookshelf speakers are a steal! They offer a ton of remarkable features and high end components, while keeping you within budget. They are Bose, after-all!

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Why not check out the Bose 301 on Amazon and see the reviews from other buyers?