A good bookshelf speaker should have certain qualities that separate it from the other types of standalone tabletop/ desktop speakers. First of all, you need to consider features such as portability, number of channels, input power rating, impedance, etc. Then you have to factor in the number of connectivity options that you’re getting. Bluetooth, WIFI, or Airplay can really help with multi-speaker or multi-room speaker setups.

You should always go for speakers made from quality components, both on the inside as well as the outside. For example, the case needs to be made from MDF or acoustic grade wood.No matter what the enclosure material, it must be resonance and vibration free. Talking about inner components, look for high-quality electrolytic capacitors and heavy EI transformers. In terms of power output, look for something within the range of 40-150W per channel. Below, we have listed some of the best bookshelf speakers that you can get for less than 500 dollars.

Bookshelf speaker reviews: UNDER $100, UNDER $200, UNDER $300UNDER $1000.

No matter what the enclosure material, it must be resonance and vibration free. Talking about inner components, look for high-quality electrolytic capacitors and heavy EI transformers. In terms of power output, look for something within the range of 40-150W per channel. Below, we have listed some of the best bookshelf speakers that you can get for less than 500 dollars.

Edifier S1000DB Bookshelf Speaker


Pro: Bluetooth 4.0, 5.5” subwoofer, 120 W RMS per channel
Con: Higher frequencies sound slightly off the mark

The Edifier S1000DB packs plenty of clarity, a wide soundstage and incredible bass. That’s impressive, right? Well, apparently everyone else who loves this tiny bookshelf speaker thinks the same way. It is incredibly well built, with a soft silk dome tweeter and an incredibly flexible, yet lightweight aluminum suspension for the 5.5” woofer. One of the major selling points for this bookshelf speaker is the 120W power rating, which is the reason it is able to deliver such immersive bass and crisp treble, without you even having to turn up the volume above 50 percent. That, along with Bluetooth 4.0 support makes this particular model a killer deal for the price.

KEF Q300B Bookshelf Speakers


Pro: 6.5” UNI-Q driver, extremely wide frequency range, 2” voice coil
Con: Bass is slightly lacking, this is especially apparent in larger rooms

The UNI-Q driver design is a huge step forward in terms of compact bookshelf speaker technology. With just one speaker, KEF managed to recreate the entire 49 Hz to 40 KHz audio spectrum, a feat that other manufacturers couldn’t achieve even with 3-channel audio and dedicated neodymium tweeters. How much of that will you actually be able to perceive through your ears? Quite a bit actually, since the audio fidelity of this speaker is all about minimum and maximum frequency figures. It is actually incredibly powerful in the 5000-15000 Hz spectrum, and this is the range that our ears can pick up quite easily. Bass is slightly lacking, but there is only so much that you can do with a unified co-axial speaker design.

MartinLogan Motion 15


Pro: 1” folded motion tweeter, elegant polished glossy styling, 5-way bi-wire binding posts
Con: Bass feels a little flat on the ultra-low ends

The folded 1” tweeter packs 8 times more surface area than a standard flat membrane 1” tweeter, which means that your audio is actually much more powerful since the larger surface area causes the tweeter to displace more air with each vibration, resulting in more audio per watt. The 5-way bi-wire binding posts are optimized to reduce signal warping, distortion, and result in the delivery of clean audio with zero signs of any coloration or signal bending. The elegant polished glossy finish looks attractive, while the perforated metal grill on the front adds a futuristic touch to the otherwise vintage-style looks.

JBL Studio 230


Pro: 6.5” PolyPlas drivers, 1” CMMD high-frequency driver
Con: Wireless connectivity would have been great

The 6.5” PolyPlas woofer on this JBL bookshelf speakers looks great on paper and sounds even better in real life. Bass is extremely heavy with lots of “oomph” to it, even on sub-50% volumes. The best part is that it doesn’t just completely dominate the rest of the audio since the treble and mid-high frequency ranges sound just as good as you would expect. All of this can be attributed to the extremely well designed low and high pass filters in the built-in crossovers that separate the frequencies from each other and pass only the most appropriate audio signals into each of the two drivers, both the tweeter as well as the woofer.

Klipsch R-15PM Powered Monitor Speakers


Pro: Compact, dual phono inputs, Bluetooth, USB input
Con: Mid-frequencies seem slightly washed out

This Klipsch bookshelf speaker comes with 100+ watts of input power rating, a 6.5” woofer, dual phono inputs, and Bluetooth. Sounds good, right? It even has Bluetooth for wireless connectivity, which means that you can easily link two of these bad boys together with your AV receiver or integrated amplifier. The sound quality is excellent across all volumes and across every frequency range, however certain spectrums in the mid-range sound slightly washed out. Also, the USB input allows you to hook up your media via the high-speed USB port and play HD audio files directly from it.

Audioengine A5+ Premium Powered Speaker


Pro: Built-in power amplifiers, 50 W per channel RMS, custom Kevlar woofers, advanced thermal management
Con: No wireless connectivity

The one thing about this particular Audioengine bookshelf speaker which really caught our attention was the built-in power amplifier. It actually provides secondary amplification to the incoming audio signals, so if you have no amplifier then you can really benefit by buying one of these speakers. If all you plan to do is listen to a set of these, then you don’t need to buy an amplifier to listen to quality audio. The built-in power amplifier will generate 50 W of RMS power per channel, and there is a total of two channels on this speaker-cum-amplifier. The case is made from special MDF composites, and the woofers feature Kevlar cones.

ELAC Uni-fi UB5 Bookshelf Speaker


Pro: Custom engineered concentric driver, anti-vibration base, advanced crossover and aluminum woofer suspension
Con: A ported design would have allowed for a much wider soundstage

This ELAC bookshelf speaker uses a conventional 2-channel tweeter + woofer configuration. It is a shame that the design does not feature a port because that could have really extended the soundstage a slight bit further, and most importantly, it would have added some more “thump” to the bass on the low ends. Advanced crossover ensures that your speakers always perform on maximum efficiency. This also ensures that the tweeter and the subwoofer never intrude into each other’s frequency ranges.

*Any prices mentioned in the article were at the time of publishing and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

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