Have you ever bought a brand new home theater system or entertainment system that just didn’t perform as well as you thought it would?
Maybe the speakers had a slick design but the sound quality was sub-par? Well, if you’re wanting to upgrade your sound system, then bookshelf speakers might just be the perfect solution.
Maybe you’re often the host of the party and need a good sound system to entertain guests. Or you just want to make sure your favorite song isn’t muffled in your stereo system when you’re at home relaxing. Or perhaps you want to upgrade your home theater experience by using high-end bookshelf speakers.
In order to upgrade your listening experience to get the perfect sound, you’ll need to know where to find the best bookshelf speakers on the market. If budget isn’t a concern for you and you simply want the best available, then you’ll love this list.
We’ve done the research for you so you don’t have to search night and day for the best bookshelf speakers. If you’re ready to upgrade your listening experience and take your home sound system to the next level, then dive in as we explore the top rated bookshelf speakers for 2020.
Here Are the 7 Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $1000
Audioengine A5+ 150W Wireless Powered Bookshelf Speakers, Bluetooth - Portable
The first bookshelf speakers on our list is the mid-range priced Audioengine A5+ Wireless set. Audioengine is one of the top bookshelf speaker manufacturers and doesn’t disappoint with this set.
The exterior is gorgeous, featuring smooth, curved edges. Since it’s made of bamboo, it’s definitely easy on the eyes and adds a nice touch to any modern decor.
Audioengine definitely took their time to construct these bookshelf speakers and beneath their stunning aesthetics lies some high quality custom audio components that are sure to impress.
The crossover circuitry and amplifier are both high quality, ensuring durability for years. The pre-amplifier sections are also attached vertically adding another layer of durability.
Plus, the Audioengine A5+ Wireless Bookshelf Speakers include built-in Bluetooth, and can stream music at an audiophile grade without the need for wires.
Why Buy It: Audioengine designed and crafted every component in-house which means the quality is top-notch. Though the speakers aren’t full range, the cabinet is calibrated specifically to provide optimal audio quality. The speakers include a bass port that maintains high efficiency airflow (minimizing bass resonance). Overall, it’s a solid, durable set of bookshelf speakers that will also add a nice touch to any room.
How Much it Costs: At $569, it’s in the mid-tier price range. This set of bookshelf speakers definitely provide their money’s worth. While many people opt-in for speakers in the $100-$300 range to save money, they usually end up sacrificing quality. This set performs very well in comparison to these lower-tier speakers, at only a few hundred dollars more.
What We Think of it: Considering it’s only $569, the Audioengine A5+ Wireless Bookshelf Speakers are a great deal. While it doesn’t quite hit the level of sound quality as others on this list, its durability and performance make it one of the best mid-tier sets available.
- Gorgeous design
- High-quality manufacturing
- Audiophile grade
- Speaker light is always on (if you sleep nearby, this can be annoying)
- Highest volume can be somewhat distorted
KEF LS50 Mini Monitor - High Gloss White (Pair)
The KEF LS50 Mini Monitor High Gloss White Pair is one of KEF’s masterpiece bookshelf speakers. These high end speakers include the same incredible Uni-Q Drive design that was originally designed for KEF’s Blade model.
The sound performance is nearly impeccable because they placed the tweeter directly in the middle of the mid-range driver which gives it a much wider dispersion. It’s a revolutionary speaker concept that makes it one of the best on the market.
The Uni-Q is emerged in a Z-Flex surround making it not just a practical, quality design, but also adds a nice aesthetic to the bookshelf speakers.
Why Buy It: It projects extremely realistic HiFi sound quality. Though these speakers are technically mini monitors, they sure pack a punch. The sound quality they deliver is close to perfect. The interior design makes them one of the best speaker sets available, and the white, glossy exterior makes them a beautiful addition to the home.
How Much it Costs: They aren’t cheap, especially for mini monitors. They’re the most expensive speakers on our list, fluctuating around the $1000 mark. However, when you purchase this set of KEF LS50 Mini Monitors, you’re getting one of the best mini monitor sets available.
What We Think of it: Not only are they one of the best bookshelf speakers under $1000. They’re probably the best mini monitors available (plus they’re probably the best looking as well). They definitely hold their own, and provide a clear, crisp sound that can take on nearly any challenger. Plus, for $1,000, they’re a steal. They sound like $1,500 speakers.
- Gorgeous aesthetics
- Incredible Uni-Q driver array
- High fidelity audio
- Max decibel level of 106
- Much smaller than KEF’s flagship models
Klipsch RP-600M Bookshelf Speakers, Crystal Clear Sound & Robust Bass
The Klipsch RP-600M Reference Premiere Bookshelf Speakers are one of the top bookshelf speakers available in the mid-tier range with bass that’s sure to impress. They feature cerametallic woofers provide a substantial boom, carrying the bass throughout the home (and possibly next door to the neighbor’s home as well).
Standing waves, can usually create nasty harmonics that spoil a good listening experience, don’t stand a chance when matched with these speakers. They include vented tweeters that eliminate the standing waves’ painful harmonics.
Why Buy It: The Klipsch RP-600M Reference Premiere Bookshelf Speakers provide an impressive sound that’s sure to satisfy. The cerametallic woofers add an impressive bass throughout the home that is perfect when you’re throwing a party or barbecue.
How Much it Costs: The Klipsch speakers are decently priced, at $629, and offer a sound quality that won’t disappoint. For mid-tier speakers, they provide a stunning sound and can compete with others in the $700-$1000 range easily.
What We Think of it: For mid-tier bookshelf speakers, they’re a great bargain. The sound quality is very impressive, and you can crank them up to really feel the bass throughout the home. The biggest downside is that they don’t have Bluetooth which is almost a given in this price range. However, it’s not necessarily a deal-breaker considering the sound quality carries the speakers.
- Sound quality is impressive for a mid-tier set
- Excellent bass performance
- Convenient size to place on any bookshelf
- Affordable as a mid-tier set
- Metal grilles are removable
- Doesn’t include Bluetooth
- Doesn’t include a digital remote (you have to manually operate the speakers)
Audioengine HD6 Wireless Powered Bookshelf Speakers, Analog Amplifier
The Audioengine HD6 Wireless Power Bookshelf Speakers are easily one of the most popular bookshelf speakers available on the market in 2019. Going into 2020, they’re only going to get more popular.
The HD6 features an impressive wireless technology that makes them a forerunner in the bookshelf speaker race to the top. They’re compatible with nearly any device: phone, laptop, TV, video game consoles, you name it.
The 150W Wireless Speakers feature traditional IO ports so you can get the same traditional speaker experience without having a massive, bulky speaker.
These speakers are compact enough to fit on nearly any bookshelf and include the aptX HD audio codec which makes streaming music a breeze.
Why Buy It: If you like versatility and ease of use, the HD6 Wireless speakers are probably your best bet. You can hook up almost any device to them, making them very easy to use. Plus, you can still use them as traditional speakers if you’re a bit old-fashioned.
How Much it Costs: Coming in at $697.95, they’re an excellent bargain as a mid-tier speaker set. While they don’t necessarily pack as much of a punch as some speakers near the $1000 range, they definitely carry their weight. Their seamless user experience makes them an impressive deal at $697.95.
What We Think of it: Audioengine leads the way as one of the forerunners in the speaker industry yet again with the HD6. This set of bookshelf speakers carries its own in terms of the latest technology. While the sound is impressive, it doesn’t quite compete with speakers in the $1000 range, but the ease of use makes up for it.
- Gorgeous construction
- Frequency range of 50Hz-22kHz
- Wireless compatibility is impressive
- Bluetooth enabled
- Higher frequency tends to reduce sound performance
- If you need to mount them, you have to buy a speaker stand separately
Dynaudio EMIT M10 Bookshelf Speaker - Audiophile Sound Quality
Dynaudio ruled the speaker world for years. But for some reason, other companies took the lead… until they released Dynaudio EMIT M10.
This set of bookshelf speakers serves as more than just a comeback set. These speakers stand alone as one of the top bookshelf speakers available, considering their price.
At 11.5 inches tall, they’re slightly bigger than the Quad S-1s but they have the construction and design to rival much larger speakers. They feature a frequency range of 50Hz to 23 kHz giving them a solid scale to perform. As Dynaudio’s compact model, it includes a 28mm soft dome tweeter and also includes a fine-tuned bass-reflex cabinet, providing an incredible low-frequency performance.
Why Buy It: If you’re wanting a compact bookshelf speaker, Dynaudio doesn’t disappoint with the EMIT M10. They give a clean, detailed sound and surprisingly low bass which is extremely high quality.
How Much it Costs: At $799, they definitely offer their money’s worth. The Emit M10 by Dynaudio offers a superior performance which can easily rival competition in the $1000+ range. Considering they’re compact, the bass they provide is worth the money on its own.
What We Think of it: Dynaudio really is making more than a comeback with these compact bookshelf speakers. They really outdid themselves when crafting these beauties. For a smaller speaker set, they perform at another level, providing a surprising amount of bass.
- Crisp, detailed sound
- Excellent bass
- Hard to find a con for these compact speakers, other than if you have the shelf space and the money, a bigger version like the M20 would improve the range and the quality.
KEF Q100W Bookshelf Loudspeakers - American Walnut, Perfect Size and Sound
The KEF Q100W Bookshelf Loudspeakers, like the LS50 Mini Monitors are based on the state of the art Blade model by KEF (their flagship speaker which is one of the best of all time). These speakers are essentially a more compact version of the impressive Q300.
The Q100, like the Q300 and LS50, features a 5.25 patented Uni-Q driver array. This Uni-Q driver array has been meticulously engineered to create an incredibly high-performing sound.
Inside the Uni-Q driver array lies a bigger, dedicated dome tweeter made from aluminum that has impressive power handling and improved sensitivity.
Why Buy It: The KEF Q100W Bookshelf Loudspeakers are one of the best bangs for your buck. You get the same Uni-Q driver array that the incredible flagship Blade speakers offer, but for a fraction of the price.
How Much it Costs: Even at a low price of $529, it’s one of the best bookshelf speakers under $1000. The Uni-Q driver array alone is worth its weight in gold, and these speakers are a steal.
What We Think of it: The Q100’s are an impressive set of speakers. Considering their size, they perform really well. Their main driver cone is made of magnesium and alloy which makes the sound crisp and clean. If you’ve got $500 to spend on speakers, these are probably your best option.
- Lower budget for under $1000
- Uni-Q Driver Array
- Dedicated tweeter
- Impressive circuitry
- Not the flagship Blade model
ELAC SUB3010 400 Watt Powered Subwoofer, Bookshelf Speakers - Best Quality Bass
ELAC introduced the new SUB3010 400W subwoofer to perfectly complete the Debut 2.0 speakers. This combo of the Debut 2.0 bookshelf speakers and SUB3010 400W subwoofer makes an excellent set up for anyone looking to add an impressive sound system to their home.
Their 10-inch long-throw custom driver ensures a stunning sound quality (and bass performance) that can rival almost any speaker, subwoofer set at a similar price. Its 10-inch passive radiator increases efficiency and response of the system, making the sound smooth, and provides ample clarity for music listening.
Why Buy It: The bookshelf speakers deliver an impressive sound performance and the 3010 adds a consuming bass that you can feel. The compact design makes it easy to place the combo in any part of the house, on nearly any shelf.
You can control everything from the click of a button on the SUB Control 2.0 app, making this combo set very user-friendly. Plus, the app automatically optimizes your room EQ by listening through your smartphone’s microphone, so you don’t have to adjust anything manually.
How Much it Costs: $557.96 is a great deal for this bookshelf speaker and subwoofer combo set from ELAC. Considering everything that’s included, it offers the best value on the list. Plus, having the user-friendly app adds a nice bonus that makes this a sweet bargain.
What We Think of it: ELAC made sure this compact combo set would perform. They created a set of high-quality bookshelf speakers, perfectly complemented by a 400 Watt subwoofer, that’s sure to impress. The app also makes it really easy to get the perfect sound through the automatic EQ adjuster. For the price, it’s an awesome deal.
- Great inclusions: speakers and subwoofer
- User-friendly app
- Automatic EQ adjuster
- Compact, easy to place
- The app can be finicky sometimes
How to Choose the Best Bookshelf Speakers: Recommendations
When it comes to picking up the perfect bookshelf speakers for your home, there are a few things you need to consider, especially since they’re not all created equal. Here’s what you should look for when trying to decide what bookshelf speakers you should get:
When picking out a speaker in the $500-$1000 price range, there should be a clear difference from when you’re looking at $50-$300 speakers.
- The audio should be extremely crisp, and there shouldn’t be major issues with cranking the volume to the max as you’d find in cheaper bookshelf speakers. If your speakers are sounding a little off at mid-volume, there’s an issue.
- The interior should be carefully constructed to prevent any annoying distortion or buzzing.
- There should be some form of venting to provide active bass clarity
- Every speaker component should be of the highest manufacturing quality
- The speaker should be sturdy, durable, and not easily given to wear and tear like scratches or dents
- At the $500 range and above, you should expect Bluetooth capability
- You should also expect wireless features and the ability to control remotely, with newer releases transitioning remote control function to smartphone app control
- Plus, it should look good. When you start spending in the $500-$1000 range, there should be more attention to detail on the exterior design and finish
The final consideration is that the manufacturer should offer some sort of warranty (1-year at a minimum). If they aren’t able to provide it, then it’s not worth spending the money, even if it never breaks down. If a speaker manufacturer is superior, they know they can offer a superior warranty because it proves the product is going to last.