In this guide, we’re exploring the best bookshelf speakers under $200 for your listening pleasure. As modern technology improves and budget products become better and better in electronics, bookshelf speakers have become cheaper. We’ve provided reviews of some of the very top models.
To get the brilliantly rated bookshelf speakers you don’t have to part with a fortune. Though you’re likely to get higher fidelity and quality the more you spend, that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of $200 bookshelf speakers with the features and reliability you need.
Top 8 Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $200
Here are the best under $200 bookshelf speakers 2019:
- Polk Audio TSi200
- Edifier R1850DB
- JBL Arena B15
- Swan Speakers M100MKII
- Pioneer SP-BS22-LR
- Edifier R1280T
- Fluance SX6
- Jamo Studio S 803
1. Polk Audio TSi200
The Polk Audio TSi200 speakers are great for those who are happy to run their own amplification system. The cherry wood design looks fantastic, but looks aren’t everything.
Fortunately, the Polk brand has created an option which has a great, balanced tone, good frequency response and plenty of power for listening at home, provided you use the right amplifier.
- Can cope with amplification of up to 150W per channel.
- Strong frequency response with 43 Hz to 25 kHz catered for.
- 1-inch tweeter included to handle the high end, 2×5.25 inch fiber cone woofers handle lows and mids.
- Require amplification which can mean extra cost.
- No Bluetooth or additional features.
If you’re not worried about extra features like Bluetooth compatibility or remote controls, then these headphones can serve you perfectly well. If you have the ability to hook up amplification, you can quickly be listening to crystal clear audio with the Polk Audio TSi200 bookshelf speakers.
2. Edifier R1850DB
If buying an amp separately and connecting the speakers up seems like a challenge then you probably want to go for the best powered bookshelf speakers under $200. This means looking for a product with the ‘active’ tag. The best option for this is the Edifier R1850DB active bookshelf speakers.
These speakers have a brilliant range of connectivity features. They’re sold as ‘multimedia speakers’ and can connect with everything from DJ decks to TVs to iPods. You don’t even need a lot of technical knowledge to use your Edifiers with just about any device you can imagine.
The sound quality is amazing, too, and not compromised by all the connectivity functionality.
- Bluetooth 4.0 connection lets you hook these up to phones and other devices.
- Wireless remote control lets you change track or input as well as volume.
- Connections include RCA/Aux, Optical/Coaxial and Bluetooth.
- EQ controls on the rear of the speakers and the option to add a subwoofer.
- Doesn’t handle bass frequencies as well as some other top-rated bookshelf speakers, so a sub may be needed.
For a simplistic setup, reliable sound quality and the ability to connect to just about any household media you can imagine, the Edifier R1850DB active bookshelf speakers are hard to argue with. The power and clarity of sound are also more than good enough for most home listeners.
3. JBL Arena B15
The JBL brand is very well known in the world of audio, with good reason. They have an unbelievable history of creating some of the best speakers, studio monitors and PA systems imaginable. With the Arena B15 JBL have created some of the best ‘surround’ speakers around.
When we say these are some of the best surround speakers, we’re not talking about surround sound just coming from two speakers as this is not possible. What we mean is that they are compatible with other speakers so that if you wish to expand your system to a surround system, you can. All JBL Arena loudspeakers can connect to one another and create a fully functioning system.
A good way to use these speakers, as well as on a bookshelf, is to wall mount them. An integrated wall-mount solution allows you to do this with ease.
- Subtle and modern black design.
- 1-inch tweeter to provide clear high-end sounds and 5.5 inch woofers for good sound projection in the mids and bass.
- High Definition Imaging (HDI) waveguide technology allows the tweeter to perform with more efficiency.
- Easy to mount.
- No wireless capabilities.
- You need to buy more speakers to use as a surround system.
- Not great sub/low bass response as they don’t project sound under 100 Hz.
There’s a lot to like about the JBL range and these speakers are very versatile. Suitable for any type of home media, they can also be the start of a brilliant surround sound system!
If you need modern features and are looking for the best bluetooth bookshelf speakers, these aren’t for you. For sound quality alone, the JBL Arena B15 are worth considering.
4. Swan Speakers M100MKII
On to a lesser known brand in the grand scheme of things. Swan Speakers have still managed to produce a fine set of speakers, and some of the best bluetooth bookshelf speakers we’ve come across.
These are brilliant for quite a few reasons, but one thing we really liked is the fact that these speakers are pretty compact. Many of the best bookshelf speaker options are quite big and bulky. They may sound good, but they also take up a lot of space. Not only are these some of the top wireless speakers under $200, they also don’t take up a whole lot of room.
- A timeless and classic design with a walnut finish. They are subtle and small in size, but look great.
- The Bluetooth 2.0 connection means they can connect to a variety of devices.
- Small 0.8″ tweeter and 4″ drivers, but they still manage to respond to low bassy sounds as low as 53 Hz.
- Aluminum heat dispersion system is in place to help the sound to avoid distortion.
- Not as loud and powerful as some of the other options on this list.
These speakers can be a wonderful choice if space is at a premium. They don’t require a huge amount of room and can sit on a desk or bookshelf with limited space, while still doing a pretty good job.
The sound quality surprised us considering the fact that the woofers are small, and these speakers also have reliable Bluetooth wireless compatibility and even a remote control.
5. Pioneer SP-BS22-LR
Pioneer is a brand audiophiles and DJs will probably be familiar with. They manufacture some high-end audio equipment and DJ gear, but they’ve also done a great job of making some quality bookshelf speakers which come in well under $200.
The SP-BS22-LR model is very impressive and some reviewers claim these outperform many speakers which cost twice as much. We’re not sure about that, but for the price tag, you get an awful lot for your money.
One key element of these speakers is the crossover, which has been specifically designed by Pioneer to handle the blending of the audio coming from the woofer and the tweeter and create a balanced, well-rounded sound. As you might expect from a brand like Pioneer, it has some impressive audio tech features.
- RF Molded Curved Cabinets designed to improve clarity by reducing standing waves.
- 6 Element Complex Crossover to balance and blend the sound between tweeter and woofers.
- Relatively simple to mount.
- No wireless capabilities.
- Can lack a bit of low-end punch and high-end sparkle.
While it handles mid-range frequencies very well, this model of speakers could maybe do with a little more in the bass frequencies and right at the top in the frequencies handled by the tweeter.
Nonetheless, it is still an excellent option on a budget, and a huge upgrade over many of the options out there. For gaming, watching movies and other home media needs, the Pioneer SP-BS22-LR are great, with a very well-balanced and clear sound.
6. Edifier R1280T
The Edifier R1280T powered bookshelf speakers aren’t just under $200, they’re significantly under. The price tag is really low considering you still get quite a lot of features and a decent audio response.
If you’re a real audiophile and want the very best clarity and high fidelity money can buy, a different option under $200 will be better for you. However, for affordable listening with plenty to like, the R1280T speakers do a good job.
- 2 AUX inputs allow you to connect to numerous devices, and you can connect two at a time.
- 4-inch woofer and 13mm tweeter blend to give decent power and good frequency response.
- EQ controls on the side of the speaker let you adjust the frequency curve.
- Comes with a remote control.
- A good quality MDF design which doesn’t tend to buzz or vibrate. Comes with a 2-year warranty.
- Not a great deal of power from the woofer and tweeter.
These speakers are an upgrade on the inbuilt speakers within many computers, TVs and other media systems, and for the price, it is really hard to argue.
In an ideal world, they would have a little bit more power and a better frequency response, but for casual listeners this may not be an issue, and the Edifier R1280T speakers can leave you with plenty of change from a $200 budget.
7. Fluance SX6
Another option for the best bookshelf speakers under 200 dollars, and this is another option which is significantly under this price tag. However, the Fluance SX6 bookshelf speakers have some exceptionally good reviews and deserve their spot on our list.
Fluance is not the best known brand out there, and certainly is nowhere near as popular as brands like JBL and Pioneer. Maybe this contributes to the lower price. The components of these speakers are pretty great, nonetheless, and this makes for a good sound at a reasonable price.
- MDF construction reduces resonance and improves clarity.
- Ferro-fluid cooled tweeter and butyl rubber surrounds to improve the durability and quality of these speakers.
- Butterworth design crossovers blend the sound from the woofer and tweeter.
- Can handle up to 100 Watts of power, meaning these are pretty powerful speakers.
- Only works with speaker wire connectors. No AUX inputs or wireless connections.
- Requires amplification.
- Take longer than some other speakers to be ‘broken in’.
These speakers are focussing on their audio ability rather than connectivity. The cleverly designed neodymium tweeters and tuned bass give a full frequency response, and the audio clarity is very good for the price, especially when paired with a high-quality amp.
Though they don’t have the utmost in modern features and compatibility, the Fluance SX6 high definition two-way bookshelf loudspeakers do have a very clear sound which has made them some of the best-selling passive bookshelf speakers.
8. Jamo Studio S 803
Jamo bookshelf speakers are Dolby Atmos ready, meaning they can be incorporated into a system that uses the Dolby Atmos surround sound, a system that even incorporates sound from above in the immersive audio experience.
They look beautiful. A contemporary design is available in three different colors so you are bound to find something suitable, that looks good in your home.
- Clever WaveGuide technology which makes the high frequencies sound clear and more powerful.
- A front-firing tube port is designed to improve the bass response and clarity.
- Integrate into any Dolby Atmos system with ease.
- Good power handling at up to 160W for the pair.
- No wireless capabilities.
- Require amplification to work.
- To use as Dolby Atmos speakers you need to buy more speakers to connect.
These speakers provide an exceptional option for those who want striking look and integration with Dolby Atmos. The frequency response is very respectable and the Jamo Studio Series S 803 provide more than enough power for most home audio uses. These are some very well-reviewed speakers.
If you’re looking to spend close to your $200 budget and want something that is both active (powered) and full of connectivity and compatibility features, we strongly recommend the Edifier R1850DB active bookshelf speakers.
The Edifier brand has become very popular in recent years as they offer some brilliant budget speakers with good sound and even better extra features such as Bluetooth.
That said, there are many different options under $200. It is a case of matching up your own unique needs and budget to the speakers which will best suit.
You can even buy speakers around the $100-150 mark which have some very respectable features and quality. A little research before taking the plunge and making your purchase can come in very handy and ensure that you make the right choice.