Best desktop speakers

Audio & Video Accessories

Many lower-priced speakers cannot handle high volumes and they will eventually begin to distort or clip sound when overused.

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Which desktop speaker is best?

An excellent audio system can bring any standard desktop setup into an entirely new realm of immersion. When paired with a new PC tower and shiny monitor, desktop speakers can create a sonic landscape to rival some home theaters.

Desktop speakers are capable of elevating any kind of setup as well, whether you have your own custom-built PC or just want some extra power for your personal laptop. With this in mind, our top pick is the Klipsch Pro Media 2.1 Computer Speaker System with its high-quality, three-piece speaker set.

What to know before you buy a desktop speaker

Size

Desktop speakers come in a wide array of sizes. Traditionally, they are built-in square or rectangular shapes of two or three, with a possible subwoofer for extra bass. However, today, these are not the only kinds of speakers on the market. Cabinet designs for desktop speakers now include intricate patterns and designs, flowing shapes and dome constructions. Additionally, interior and exterior LED lights add a splash of color to the mix.

Wireless vs. wired

Determine whether you want wired or wireless speakers. Wireless speakers take away the hassle and clutter of cords behind your setup. You can place them on adjacent bookshelves or side tables. Wireless speakers often can pair with multiple devices via Bluetooth, allowing for much more versatility. Wired speakers are a viable option for anyone looking to have a more traditional desktop setup or who has the space on their desk for the boxes.

Sound

Sound is everything when it comes to speakers. Whether you intend to stream, listen to music or play video games, finding desktop speakers with the right sound is of utmost importance. Finding speakers with optimal sound depends on a few factors, including the environment of the room you are in and the kinds of channels the speakers utilize. Two-channel stereo (2.0) is the most common channel in desktop speakers. However, some speakers have true surround-sound setups with more channels, such as Dolby surround sound.

What to look for in a quality desktop speaker

Inputs

Most desktop speakers have more than one audio output. There may be headphone input or Bluetooth connectivity. Determining which inputs you will use is an essential factor in choosing quality desktop speakers.

Versatility 

Many speakers now have Bluetooth connectivity, allowing you to connect more than one device to them. This means you can play music on your speakers from the convenience of your smartphone, then immediately transfer that sound to your desktop to catch your favorite streaming show or get into your favorite game.

Accessories

Speakers come with different accessories to make the listening experience even better. These accessories could include speaker isolation pads, which reduce speaker vibration and unwanted resonance to improve the listening experience; or speaker stands and brackets to allow more versatile placement and portability. Additionally, many speakers might include adapter cables to match with a specific computer or home-theater ports.

How much you can expect to spend on a desktop speaker

Inexpensive speakers cost between $20-$100 and typically have simple sound quality, including basic bass tones and a few cabinet design options. Midrange speakers cost between $100-$300 and feature more encompassing sound qualities with the possibility of features such as surround sound. Top-quality speakers cost more than $300 and may feature center-channel soundbars or additional subwoofers to create the most complex and enriched audio experience. Sound-isolating cabinets are a standard feature of expensive desktop speakers.

Desktop speaker FAQ

What is the best placement for a 5.1 desktop speaker system?

A.  This kind of system features three main speakers: two satellite speakers and a subwoofer. Set up one speaker in the center, one on the left and one on the right. You can place the subwoofer anywhere between the right and left speakers and often on the ground or on a low stand. Set the satellite speakers to the left and right a few degrees behind each shoulder.

My speaker volume at higher levels is overwhelmed by static. Why?

A.  Most likely, it is a faulty speaker or wire, meaning the speaker system may have to be replaced. Things such as feedback and static often are symptoms of cheaper, permanently attached wires or caused by old age.

What’s the best desktop speaker to buy?

Top desktop speaker

Klipsch Pro Media 2.1 Computer Speaker System

Klipsch Pro Media 2.1 Computer Speaker System

What you need to know: With a sound that will match some home theater systems, the Klipsch speaker system provides high-quality audio with a three-piece speaker set.

What you’ll love: It provides a well-balanced sound with two satellite speakers and a subwoofer to enrich with deep bass. It has a durable construction and THX-certified audio quality.

What you should consider: No power button means you must unplug it to turn it off completely.

Where to buy: Available at Amazon.

Top desktop speaker for the money

Cyber Acoustics 2.1 Speaker System

Cyber Acoustics 2.1 Speaker System

What you need to know: It has a solid sound for a budget and is great for everyday use.

What you’ll love: It includes a speaker set with a subwoofer, a control pod with volume and bass control and an LED power indicator. It has great sound for an average-sized room.

What you should consider: Some users report a low bass quality.

Where to buy: Available at Amazon.

Worth checking out

Logitech 2.1 Speaker System

Logitech 2.1 Speaker System

What you need to know: This Logitech speaker system is THX-certified and has excellent sound for a modest price.

What you’ll love: Speakers can provide clear mid- and high-range sound. The subwoofer offers ample deep bass to round it out.

What you should consider: Speaker cords are short and the subwoofer is bulky.

Where to buy: Available at Amazon.

 

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Jared Lindsay writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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