Best Bookshelf Speakers Under 200 in 2021 – Ultimate Reviews
Bookshelf speakers may not be an audiophile’s favorite but they are certainly the most preferred moderate-sized speakers for small spaces. They also do exemplarily well in large spaces when combined with other home theater components. With a good pair of bookshelf speakers, you can easily fill your room with sound without hurting your bank account.
You’ve decided that you need to add these sound gems to your space but aren’t sure how to go about the selection process. At Audiomention.com, we are dedicated to making sure that you don’t face any obstacles when buying great audio equipment. We’ve compiled a list of 10 best bookshelf speakers under 200 and a brief guide with considerations to make when buying a bookshelf speaker.
Take a quick look at the top 10 speakers on the market based on our research.
Power handling (RMS) per pair
Now, let’s get to see what each of these top performers packs in terms of features.
1. Edifier R1280T
Leading the pack of top performing bookshelf speakers is the R1280T, a visually-captivating 2-way powered speaker pair by Edifier. What meets the eye is a beautiful wood veneer panel, matte metallic top finish and a grille. Inside each unit, a 4-inch woofer and a 13mm tweeter deliver praiseworthy sound performance. What’s more?
Features of Edifier R1280T
Edifier R1280T deserves the top position because it delivers clear mids and highs while maintaining rich and robust lows that add depth to your music. You’ll also love the way these speakers’ classic vinyl finish compliments your decor.
2. Polk Audio T15
The T15s are a versatile choice of bookshelf speakers for a home theater. Competing shoulder to shoulder with our top pick, these 2-way Polk Audio speakers give you concert-grade sound at an incredibly pocket-friendly price. See its winning features and benefits below:
Polk Audio T15 Highlights
We think that Polk Audio T15 is an excellent choice of bookshelf speakers because few models can beat its value-price proposition. It’s built to impress today’s audio lover with great sound quality and unrivalled versatility.
Regardless of the type of home theater system you are using currently, this bookshelf speaker pair will step in and transform your entertainment experience for good.
3. Pioneer SP-BS22-LR
Have you been looking far and wide for a speaker system that can improve your home theater experience? Pioneer SP-BS22-LR gives you the ideal entry into high-performance audio. With this 4-inch speaker, you are set to get the best of Andrew Jones’ workmanship, which has been unparalleled for several decades now.
Unique features of Pioneer SP-BS22-LR
You’d be right to choose Pioneer SP-BS22-LR if you are eager to add sound harmony to your home theater experience. Everything about these speakers makes them a perfect choice for superb sound delivery in small rooms.
4. Klipsch R-41M
A small but incredibly elegant bookshelf speaker may be what you need to enliven your compact living space. Klipsch R-41M provides this solution. It comes with mind-blowing sound performance features that make it rank among the top 5 best bookshelf speakers under 200. Check out these winning features below:
Klipsch R-41M highlights
We enthusiastically recommend the R-41M. It’s a lot of fun especially at higher volumes, which it handles very well thanks to its superbly-designed woofer cone and tweeter.
5. Edifier R1700BT
Edifier is back with an active studio monitor in the form of a 2-way powered speaker pair. The R1700BT beats competition especially with its versatility. And just like the R1280T we reviewed earlier, this bookshelf speaker comes in a classic wood finish that can match any home furniture.
Winning features of Edifier R1700BT
Edifier R1700BT very well fits in the hi-fi territory. The speakers deliver a tone that’s full of clarity and warmth. Besides, mids and highs are awesomely balanced. User’s definitely love the speaker’s ability to pair with their mobile and other Bluetooth devices.
6. Sony SSCS5
So far, most of the bookshelf speakers reviewed are 2-way models. Sony is here to bring a change. Its 3-way model - the SSCS5 – is an ideal choice for someone aiming at getting all the energy and passion of original performances. Let’s get to see how this Sony champion will change your home theater experience.
Sony SSCS5 Highlights
The superior performance features of the SSCS5 have got many users excited about how great the speakers are. Our tests verified these praises. We, thus recommend this speaker for hi-fi near-field application.
If you enjoy light pop, jazz, classical or folk, Sony SS-CS5 is definitely worth your consideration.
7. Micca RB42
Finding a bookshelf speaker that balances size, cost, and satisfactory sound is not easy. However, Micca has made it possible to have all of the three. This bookshelf speaker uses a 4-inch woofer and a 0.75” silk dome tweeter to deliver sound performance that exceeds many users’ expectations.
Distinguishing features of Micca RB42
The RB42 is a handsome package with robust sound performance. It injects a significant dose of fun when playing music across all genres, whether playing on its own or as a part of a home theater system.
Grab Micca RB42 for home or office entertainment. It’s compact, affordable, and a great performer.
8. Yamaha NS-6490
Yamaha is widely known for its extensive variety of receivers and ancillary sound equipment. It has also been making decent budget speakers, and this 3-way bookshelf is one of them. The first model of the NS-6490 was designed 15 years ago. To date, this model has remained a favorite choice for users who appreciate natural and authentic sound.
Capabilities and cool features of Yamaha NS-6490
Whether you are a professional or home entertainment lover, these bookshelf speakers will delight you with their clear, tight, and full sound response. They fit a wide range of applications, so you cannot go wrong with them regardless of the kind of system you are currently using.
Take advantage of the inexpensive Yamaha NS-6490 to upgrade your home theater to an energized surround sound system.
9. Pyle PBKSP22
Volume above everything else – that’s your focus while searching for a bookshelf speaker. Despite the small size of Pyle PBKSP22, it will astonish you with how loud it can get. This bookshelf speaker packs massive power and great-quality components. It represents the perfect choice of a Hi-Fi desktop speaker. There is no way this little sound warrior can disappoint you.
Features and benefits of Pyle PBKSP22
For anyone looking for an inexpensive yet loud center channel or surround speakers, choosing Pyle PBKSP22 is a no-brainer. The price of this extremely clean and loud bookshelf speaker pair will blow your mind.
10.BIC America DV62si
BIC America is a leading sound equipment brand in the U.S. It closes our list of best bookshelf speakers under 200 with this high-sensitivity, tuned-vent bookshelf speaker model. The DV62si is a feature-loaded 2-way model that can work in many home entertainment systems without issues. Check out what it packs for users below:
Highlights of Bic America DV62si
The main selling point of BIC America DV62si is sound quality across the frequency spectrum. These speakers give out some calm, ambient music at low volumes. Also, you’ll not be disappointed by it performance at high volumes.
The DV62si may be a bit costlier than other models but it gives you extra value for the money.
Factors to consider when buying bookshelf speakers
Buying a nice pair of bookshelf speakers is quite a rewarding experience. You delight in the sound quality improvements that your new speakers add to your listening experience. Besides, acquiring great bookshelf speakers represents a step closer to building a fully-fledged home theater.
Just like with purchasing other types of audio equipment, one needs to have prior information on factors to consider when making the ultimate choice. This final section of our comprehensive review of best bookshelf speakers under 200 is dedicated to explaining several critical considerations to make when selecting the right bookshelf speakers.
i. Active versus passive bookshelf speakers
Active speakers come with a built-in amplifier. You just have to plug these speakers into a power supply and they’re good to go. They are sometimes referred to as wireless speakers. Many active speakers will come with Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connectivity, giving you the convenience of quick and hassle-free connections to mobile devices.
Passive speakers (also known as wired speakers) require connection to an external amplifier. Installing them involves clumsier work than with wireless speakers. You have multiple wires to deal with, and you have to be very careful to ensure that you connect things correctly. On the good side, wired bookshelf speakers can deliver a better sound boost than comparable passive speakers.
ii. Speaker size
Bigger speakers often mean larger drivers and louder sound. If you are after more volume, bigger bookshelf speaker models should be your target. Remember to consider the installation space your new speakers will need. Some bookshelf speakers come in large and heavy enclosures. Make sure the size you choose will not be difficult to move around and install.
Noteworthy, a bigger size doesn’t equal better sound performance. A speaker’s sound quality is influenced by other factors other than the size of the enclosure, as we’ll see shortly below.
iii. Sound quality
A speaker’s sound quality is determined by several factors. First, the materials used to make the entire speaker structure (woofer, tweeter, and enclosure) influence the sound delivery. Secondly, the number of drivers included in the design of the speaker affects the dynamism of the sound. For instance, a 3-way speaker is more likely to deliver better quality sound because frequencies are allocated efficiently to drivers that can handle them. Crossovers also enhance the production of dynamic sound.
Another crucial factor is the speaker construction technologies employed in making the enclosure. Check out for things such as venting and the use of airtight material, as these help to improve sound response.
iv. Power handling
If you’ve bought any type of speaker before, you know how important it is to verify the RMS power rating of a speaker. Bookshelf speakers may be rated from about 15 watts to as high as 150 watts of RMS power handling. Your choice will be determined by factors such as the power handling of your amplifier (in the case of a passive speaker), and your desired level of loudness.
So, you want to make sure that the bookshelf speaker you are considering for purchase can work with your existing or prospective amplifier. Also noteworthy, more powerful speakers generally give out louder sound.
Other factors you may consider include:
That’s about it. The tips above should help you to confidently choose the best bookshelf speakers under 200 for a sustainable upgrade to your home entertainment system.
Why Edifier R1280T is our pick for the best bookshelf speakers under 200
The R1280T has consistently maintained a favorable reputation among users. It’s one of the best options for higher-end bookshelf speakers, known widely especially for its great audio response and price.
From the exterior to every part of the speaker’s interior, the R1280T boasts of refinement – be it of sound quality or construction. Edifier is undeniably a master of design as evidenced by the nicely built enclosures of all its models including the R1280T.
You are sure to get an impressive midrange, soundstage, and bass performance, marked by fantastic imaging, tuning, refinement, and depth. The sonic impact of this speaker to your home entertainment system is only comparable with bigger and more expensive speakers. Further, the wireless remote functionality is a unique feature that separates this speaker model from competition.
We recommend Edifier R1280T to every person who needs to add a decent sense of detail in the midranges together with smooth, weighty, room-filling bass response.