The Best Computer Speakers of 2016

by Patrick Hyde •

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The best computer speakers of 2016 are Audioengine’s A2+ Desktop Speakers. These speakers have excellent sound and are housed in hand-finished wood cabinets.

The Details

Best Computer Speakers: Audioengine A2+

Computer speakers get a bad rap and, for the most part, the poor reputation is well deserved. The A2+ defy this stereotype with their rich timbre and hifi support. This is a cost-effective, compact option that sounds as good as many bookcase speakers.

The A2+ has a built-in  44/16 DAC, or digital analog converter. A DAC converts digital data into analog signal. Most computer speakers need a standalone DAC to play hi-fi files. The A2+ does need a standalone to play 24-bit tracks, but runs most other HDtracks without any issues.

I’ve read mixed reports on the bass. Some say they were a little let down by the lows on the speaker and needed a subwoofer. Others reported that the A2+ has a significant output below 50hz and did not require a subwoofer. Either way, the A2+’s bass is in the highest echelon of computer speakers.

In addition to the USB and RCA outputs, the A2+ has a 3.5mm mini-jack for connecting phones and mp3 players.

Currently, the A2+ is available in red, white, and black. All three options are in a beautifully finished wood and look great on a desk. They speakers weigh about 5lbs each and their dimensions are 4″ x 6″ x 5.75.”

The Audioengine A2+ Desktop Speakers are available on Amazon for about $250.

Another Option: M-Audio Studiophile Speakers

Best Computer Speakers: M-Audio

Another option is the M-Audio Studiophile AV 40 Active Studio Monitor Speakers. The speakers sound almost as good as the Audioengine’s A2+. They are bulkier speakers however — at 8.75 x 6 x 7.25 inches, they area almost too large for a desktop.

The M-Audio Studiophile AV 40 are available for about $160 on Amazon.

The Best Computer Speakers For Bass

best computer speakers

For those interested in the computer speaker with the best bass, see Harman Kardon’s Soundsticks III. These speakers come equipped with a 6″ 20-watt downward-firing subwoofer with eight full-range transducers.

My old roommate had the the Soundsticks for over a year, and they fill the entire living room with a deep and pure sound that rivals larger, more expensive setups. They do suffer from some design flaws. They don’t have a headphone jack and there is no way to control the bass through the speakers. They cost $170.

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