Bookshelf speakers are an excellent way of enjoying thumbing music along with studio quality sound.
Since each speaker consists its own pair of bass drivers and tweeter, they tend to sound fuller and much louder compared to any other set of speakers.
However there are multiple range of Bookshelf speakers, you can get a starter from Dayton Audio for $60 and the audiophile grade one’s go from $3000 range and upward
This is why I decided to find a middle ground and list out 3 of the best bookshelf speakers under $500.
$500 is an excellent range to get started with Bookshelf speakers; as you are introduced with premium brands that not only offer excellent sound quality but also an extravagance that cheaper bookshelf speakers fail to offer.
Before we jump into the list of Top 3 Best Bookshelf Speakers under 500 Dollars, let us first discuss a little about Bookshelf Speakers, shall we?
What are Bookshelf Speakers? What is its purpose?
Since you’re specifically looking for Bookshelf speakers, I’m assuming you know a little bit about them… however for those who don’t; here’s my 2 cents.
Bookshelf speakers are a pair of speakers than come in 2.0 configuration.
Unlike other speakers, each speaker set in bookshelf speakers is big with size ranging from 7 inches to 13 inches in height.
Each speaker consists of a Bass driver and Tweeter that form an entire set. The bass driver ranges from size of 3 inches to 6.5 inches whereas the tweeter ranges from 0.8 inches to 2 inches.
Bookshelf speakers require lot of power and generate lot of energy, hence some of them tend to have larger heat sink behind its back, they are required to be placed at least 10 inches away from the wall behind it.
You might wonder, why are these called as bookshelf speaker? Here’s the answer.
Back in the old days, high quality speakers were big and large that took space of an entire furniture.
Most of these were floor standing speakers that were 3-4 foot in size, they were even heavy to move around.
Bookshelf speakers are rather a compact version of Floor Standing speakers and tend to weigh less too.
Before the dawn of computers, these kind of speakers were usually placed in bookshelf cabinets and thus the name.
Now that our little session of General Knowledge is done, I’m dire to show you the list that I’ve specially made for you.
Are you ready?
Top 3 Best Bookshelf Speakers under $500
Audioengine is a brand that is highly synonym with high quality and minimalistic looking bookshelf speaker set and USB DAC.
The one version I’ve mentioned now is their flagship edition in the audio enthusiast consumer range.
Audioengine A5+ Bamboo version is $70 pricier than its base edition made up of high density plastic fiber and comes in two colors: Black and White.
Design wise they look extremely high-class and constructed very beautifully; one can definitely fall in love with just one look of it.
They come packed inside a draw-string pouch for each of these speakers, while the package contains a power adapter, RCA cable, 3.5mm to 3.5mm male cable, copper wire and a small remote control.
We have a tweeter and Bass at its front with the left speaker making way for volume knob and status indicator light.
The back contains a large heat sink along with a 3.5mm input jack and USB jack to power your devices.
Beneath that we have RCA input to couple it with a DAC and also an RCA output to connect it to a subwoofer.
Moreover you have an output connector to connect it with right speaker via the included cable.
We also have a Power On/Off switch along with voltage adjustment and power cord connector.
Specifications wise, you get a 5 inch Kevlar built sub woofer along with 2 inches of Tweeter that work together to produce excellent sound.
However I’d do like to mention that these aren’t marketed as reference speakers hence professional audio editing is out of the way; since you can hear some coloring.
Best use for Audioengine A5+ would be when you’re having party in your house or watching movies and for all kind of multimedia uses. [Check Full Review Here]
“With a high quality rigid built and premium aesthetics, Audioengine A5+ doesn’t leaves anything to be desired more. You have all the accessories in the package requiring not going outside and getting something after market. If you’re fond of luxurious stuffs with a require for piece of audio excellence, it’s hard missing on the Audioengine A5+.”
#2: PSB Alpha PS1
PSB is not a popular household name in the audio industry… however the products they’ve introduced till now makes it want to take them seriously.
I recently heard its M4U Noise Cancelling Headphones who design looked very stupid and average to me, however the sound was excitingly amazing and much better than anything in the price range and just below Bose QC25 in terms of noise cancellation.
Till now PSB has launched great set of bookshelf speakers in their Alpha and Imagine product range… while Alpha being targeted at consumer level while the Imagine is meant for reference audio uses.
PSB Alpha PS1 definitely happens to be a great set of speakers that are compact is size and easily sits on either side of your desktop monitor or TV without asking for much space.
These have Height and Depth of 8 inches whereas width of 4-1/2 inches that makes them very compact and easy to use.
Though the small size doesn’t means there’s compromise in sound, they have beautiful soundstage that happens to produce larger vocal range and surprisingly better sound imaging.
With PSB Alpha PS1 one can easily distinguish different instruments played in any song very easily.
Specifications wise you get a 3.5 inches metal polypropylene cone woofers coupled with 0.75 inches of aluminum dome tweeters.
“Compared to Audioengine A5+; PSB Alpha PS1 offers a more natural sound and accurate bass that is not meant for critical listening but surely you can enjoy your music with great eminence and less distortion. For the price they sit at, PSB Alpha P1 happens to be an excellent deal for people who want bookshelf speakers minus the bulk.”
#1: KEF Q100
KEF is an extra ordinarily premium and luxury audio brand with speakers starting at $350 to all the way up to $7000 and more.
With accurate audio, KEF also provides exquisite design as you can see in the images.
Ditching the industrial design, KEF looks like a luxurious element that is going to bring a class to your home.
These happen to have a subdued minimalistic design that is no match to any other Bookshelf speaker out there.
Before I jump into specifications, let me give an idea about the colors in which they come. They come in 4 different styles and that is: Black, White, Rosewood and Walnut; out of which White looks extremely auspicious compared to others.
Sitting inside these speakers are aluminum driver which the company calls as KEF Uni-Q drivers; that sit inside cabinet having 30% more space allowing smooth flow of sound that highly helps in producing wider soundstage.
Specifications wise we have a 5.25 inches of bass driver and 1 inches of tweeter that produce rated output of 100W which happens to be more than enough to fill an entire room altogether. It produces frequency of 49Hz-40000Hz with an impedance of 8 Ohms.
This helps when you have a party in your house, you can just turn the KEF Q100 to its loudest volume and enjoy your party like you do in Discos.
“There are bookshelf speakers with excellent sound and then there luxurious looking bookshelf speakers with excellent sound, and KEF Q100 fits in the latter bracket. Even being an entry level model in Q series of bookshelf speakers from KEF, they blow the socks off most of the flagship speakers from other models. Do I need to mention they are an excellent buy?”
As I mentioned earlier, good quality bookshelf speakers start from the $100 price range.
Since you’ve extended your budget upto $500, you definitely deserve a speaker that not only sounds great but looks exemplary too and that is what these three speakers mentioned in this list does.
I hope with this article your search for Premium Bookshelf speakers ends here, if you loved what I wrote… I’d be glad if you could take a little time and leave a small comment below.
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