Bookshelf speakers make a terrific upgrade for computer speakers. At this price point, you’ll find that the best bookshelf speakers under $200 come with added features. These features could vary from brand to brand but generally, the quality and connectivity options of mid-range bookshelf speakers are better than their budget-friendly counterparts. Looking for the best bookshelf speakers under $200? Here are our recommendations:
Best Bookshelf Speakers under $200
- Sleek, versatile design
- Durable construction
- Clean audio quality, crisp treble
- Great soundstage
- Bass performance isn’t as powerful
- A little too warm for some
We’re starting off our list with a speaker model that fell under the radar yet garnered rave reviews among users, the Micca PB42X. The Micca PB42X is a set of bookshelf speakers with a simple design and powerful audio performance. This model follows the success of its older sibling, the MB42X.
While the design is simple, the PB42X’s overall construction looks and feels sturdy. The PB42X’s amplifiers feature the latest generation class-D chip from Texas Instrument. The PB42X comes with an 18V/2A power adapter out of the box.
We like the versatility of the PB42X. The design is perfect for any setup. The standard inputs allow for total compatibility with stereos and mobile devices. Since this is a plug and play device, it’s a user-friendly set of speakers that won’t confuse newbies.
As for the audio quality, the mids are warm while the treble is crisp thanks to the silk dome tweeters. The PB42X’s 8-element crossover is able to preserve the voicing of the speaker. The bass performance is nice and punchy although it could use more power. Do note that the mids are a tad too warm, which is not everyone’s cup of tea. The PB42X has enough power to fill a small room with sound although it’s best set in the corner. The amps deliver smooth, frequency response with minimal noise floor and distortion.
As for the cons, we feel that the bass response of the PB42X isn’t as punchy. Also, some users say the PB42X is prone to port noise. We didn’t come across the same issue with our test unit but this is something worth considering when checking out the PB42X.
PB42X brings the same amazing features that made its older sibling, MB42X, a much-raved product with a few upgrades. It’s a great set of speakers overall and the added features put more value to its budget-friendly price point.
Polk Audio TSi100
- Compact form factor
- Excellent treble response
- Rich, detailed audio
- Bass performance isn’t as powerful
The Polk Audio TSi100 is another highly rated speaker that delivers great style and impeccable audio performance. At a glance, the TSi100 looks like your average bookshelf speakers. It sports a wooden veneer casing and sleek silver accents. The design is versatile enough that it will look perfect for modern and classic setups alike. The TSi100 comes in two finishes, natural wood, and matte black.
Some of TSi100’s notable features are the standard low-frequency driver and high-frequency tweeter. We love how solid yet compact TSi100’s built is. It feels like the speakers are made to last. The TSi100 also comes with a flared port venting system, which minimizes interference and turbulence when the music’s blaring!
The TSi100’s overall look may be simple but the audio production is where it’s at. Vocals are clear, clean, and crisp. The bass is nicely detailed although less punchy than some bookshelf speakers. Clearly, the TSi100 won’t satisfy bass heads but the overall audio quality is balanced, a little lightweight but enjoyable.
TSi100’s treble performance is worth a mention. It is a cut above the rest. The audio clarity is impressive; the tone soars above the mix. The TSi100 is perfect for all sorts of music genre. However, it works best with classical, jazz, acoustic, rock, and electronic music!
Overall, the TSi100 is one good looking set of bookshelf speakers that deliver impressive audio for the price. The bass could use more work but the accuracy and clarity of the treble response make up for the lack of punchiness.
Sony SS-CS5 3-Way Bookshelf Speakers
- Sleek, compact design
- Excellent audio
- Zero distortion even at higher volumes
- Clean, clear vocals
- Crisp highs
- Weak bass
The SS-CS5 is Sony’s answer to affordable yet high-quality speakers under the $200 price range. For those who’d love to score a great set of bookshelf speakers from Sony, this model is the brand’s most affordable speakers. That’s quite something considering that Sony’s not known for its budget-friendly offerings.
The design of the SS-CS5 is pretty basic. It sports a sleek, matte black case with tone on tone accents. The SS-CS5 comes with a super tweeter and foamed mica woofer cone. The grilles are secured using traditional grommets instead of magnets. Setting the SS-CS5 is so easy, there’s nothing to it at all.
When it comes to audio performance, the SS-CS5’s voice reproduction is clear, clean, and free of distortion even at high volumes. The SS-CS5’s dual woofers give life to any tracks and the midrange is smooth. The audio never sounded bloated. The highs and lows are crisp and pleasing to the ears. The treble detail is impressive; there is not a hint of edginess to the audio.
When it comes to bass, it is where we noticed the lack of punchiness to the tracks. As far as the bass response goes, there is always room for improvement. Still, the SS-CS5 is a great set of speakers for any music genre, especially rap, classic, and reggae music.
It’s possible to score a set of Sony bookshelf speakers for under 200 bucks. The SS-CS5 offers smooth, clear audio that’s distortion free even at the highest volume. The audio quality is terrific, even better than its high-end counterparts.
Edifier R1700BT Bookshelf Speakers
- Attractive design
- Compact form factor
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Excellent audio quality
- Not suitable for heavy music genres
- Booming bass
We’re rounding up our list of the best bookshelf speakers under $200 with the R1700BT. The R1700BT is a set of mid-range speakers with a rather handsome design. The speakers feature an eye-catching walnut vinyl body with matte black accents. The design of the speaker body is slanted at a 10-degree angle. According to Edifier, this was done to focus the audio to the listener.
The controls of the R1700BT are set on the right speaker in a recessed section. The grilles can be popped out if you’d like to expose the bass port and the drivers. As for the connectivity options, the R1700BTs comes two pairs of RCA analog inputs. These inputs are set on the back of the speakers. This set is also Bluetooth-compatible so you can stream your favorite tracks wirelessly.
When it comes to the audio quality, the sound is always lively and clear. The vocals are smooth, expressive, and clear. This is a great set of speakers to get if you love fun, bouncy tunes. The midrange is warm and richly detailed. The treble is a little thin and edgy but not too sharp. As for the bass, it can be a little too overpowering at times. At some point, the bass nearly overshadowed the quality of the sound. Even at quieter volume, the bass line seems to stick out unnaturally.
The R1700BT is a great set of bookshelf speakers with a nearly flawless midrange. The stunning design and clear audio make the R1700BT a great addition to any entertainment system.
Tips and Buying Guide: Best Bookshelf Speakers under $200
Why Choose Bookshelf Speakers?
Why choose bookshelf speakers over traditional speakers? Unlike bulky speakers, bookshelf speakers are designed for modest or basic systems. These speakers are great if you don’t have enough floor space for a large system. Since they’re small, you can move the speakers around to create the ideal setup for your needs.
Great Audio Quality
Bookshelf speakers are ideal for the office, living room, and home theater systems. These products can be used for parties although the audio isn’t as loud as big-sized home theater speakers. Despite their small size, these speakers deliver a comparable intensity of sound and bass as larger theater speakers.
It’s also worth noting that bookshelf speakers are more affordable than big-sized home theater speakers or floor standing speakers. With bookshelf speakers, you can enjoy decent audio quality without the eye-watering costs. Since these speakers are versatile, you can hook them into your stereo system, TV, computer, gaming console, and mobile devices. Bookshelf speakers with Bluetooth connectivity, such as the Edifier R1700BT, allow you to stream your favorite tunes online.
Who Needs a Pair of Bookshelf Speakers?
Bookshelf speakers offer high impedance, excellent frequency response, clear vocals and decent sensitivity levels.
The audio quality of bookshelf speakers isn’t as good as that of big-sized home theater speakers or floor standing speakers so these products may not appeal to discriminating audiophiles. However, these speakers are perfect for casual music listeners, gamers, and those looking to upgrade their computer speakers.