60 of 63 people found the following review helpful
on January 14, 2014
For several years I have used a Cambridge Soundworks system with my Mac. I kept reading great stories about products from this company.
Background - I have been into high end stereo and home theater for many years, with Naim being my favorite brand for stereo (very expensive) - spending thousands is a part of that silly game, but it does train your ears to hear real differences in equipment.
The key criteria in a speaker for me is the ability to lock onto the rhythm through the recovery and attack of the amplifier, the timbre of vocals and the detail and placement in the overall presentation of individual instruments and voices.
I took delivery of these speakers and am shocked that $249 can deliver this level of performance. Across vocals, jazz and classical music the speakers are beyond anything i had hoped. On podcasts, voices resonate.
Hint - play through the USB input and try and have your music files in lossless (storage is so cheap these days)
Note - if your idea of fidelity is a boomy presentation with loudness switched onto max, don't waste your time on these speakers. You can get that for less $$.
36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on November 27, 2013
I'm an old audiophile and got these for my iMac. I can run the computer through my stereo via Audioengine A1 but don't always want to use my heavy amp and my Kef 104.2's for sound; sounds great but overkill and power hungry. Got the A2+ because of the USB hookup. They kick butt. Very surprise at the sound. The bass is amazing considering the size. Highs/Mids are clean as could be whether I am playing iTunes, Pandora, or gaming. Absolutely worth the money. I found tons of reviews on the A2 but nothing on the new A2+. I can only guess that with the USB input these can only only be better. Quite happy with the purchase.
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on May 4, 2014
I use these speakers with my TV and I've been very happy with them. I added a subwoofer (not from Audioengine) and the sound with the entire setup is great. I'm not a huge audio freak, but I like good deep sound. I'd recommend these to anyone who wants good sound without a huge messy speaker system.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on December 28, 2013
Just got these for Christmas. Amazing sound across the many types of music I enjoy. I'm no audiophile, but I want my music to sound like the artist is playing just behind my computer screen. These speakers do that and the reproduction of the sound of voice, piano, solo cello, rock bands and multi-voiced classical music are all good. Am listening to Allegri's Miserere now: all the beautiful haunting sound. Earlier, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Jussi Bjorling. Don't need loud; need good. These deliver (and they can be loud when necessary!).
62 of 77 people found the following review helpful
on February 5, 2014
First (and this is not part of my rating score), because these are magnetically shielded, the reseller had to ship via ground. No two day delivery for prime.
The built-in USB DAC is at 44khz; which is OK but not great compared to other options that are out there.
I was looking for a reasonably priced set of speakers with audiophile-level response and range. Sound is pretty good altogether, except at the low end.
According to AudioEngine's specs, the frequency response range is 65Hz-22kHz ±2.0dB
When using a tone generator on the system (connected through USB), I was able to measure the actual low end frequency response. The speakers respond well, (and beautifully linear) from about 125 HZ up to 15KHz. Upper end may be higher but I no longer hear those frequencies.)
But my issue is at the lower end. The volume tapers off quickly as you move from 125 Hz down to 100 Hz, and by 82Hz it's only 1/4 of the volume. This is in the frequency response range, and I adjusted with an EQ to match volume. When I did this, higher frequency (1KHz) sounds were noticeably distorted.
If you like classical music or anything else where bass response is important - you'll need to pair these with a subwoofer or you'll need to find a different pair of speakers.
If they'd written specs that showed the range at 110Hz-20KHz, I'd rate this 4 or 5 stars. But their specs don't match the actual performance of these speakers - and that sets an incorrect expectation with the buyer.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on November 17, 2014
I absolutely love listening to these speakers. I bought them through Audioengine directly and not through Amazon. So...when I first started listening to them through iTunes, I really loved them, but only with certain music...the 125-250Hz audio range was awful in certain music. I did some research and found the problem...YOU MUST TURN OFF SOUND ENHANCER IN ITUNES. I turned this off an adjusted the itunes EQ and it made such a huge difference. TRUST ME...turn it off. So, while I liked the sound of the speakers, they were lacking in the low end. After reading some other reviews, I decided to purchase the Panasonic SW-8MK2 subwoofer (I paid $80 for it). It is a fairly low end sub, but it performs VERY well in a small to medium sized room (I like it better than my home theatre ENERGY sub). I think the best way to describe the setup now is like "butter"...it's so smooth and warm that I stay up too late listening to music now. Bottom line....I spent $249 + $80 for the system....I honestly believe that you cannot find a better sounding system for the money. I took awhile to adjust my EQ to my likings...I'm attaching a pic...guess i can't hmmm...well 32hz is 3 bars above center, 64hz is centered, 125hz is about 3 bars below center and 250hz is just below 2 bars below center, 500hz is 1 bar below center, 1k is just above center, 2k is just above one bar above center, 4k is 2 bars above center, 8k is just above 3 bars from center, and 16k is just slightly below that....that's my ears anyways...enjoy!!!
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on March 28, 2014
Excellent sound and clarity for the size. I was debating getting the larger A5+ to get bigger sound, but I'm glad I got these instead, as they already provide more than enough volume and soundstage for my average sized living room.
However, as many have noted, the bass can indeed be a bit thin. In order to remedy this, I was debating purchasing Audioengine's own S8 subwoofer, but the price is a bit steep. I have also looked into some of the lower priced subwoofer offerings on Amazon from Polk Audio, Pioneer, and Yamaha, but their large size would partly defeat the purpose of having such a compact system as this. Also, it's not like I needed a ton of bass. Just a little bit more oomph would more than suffice.
I finally came up with a solution. I happened to have an old Cyber Acoustics CA-3602a (http://goo.gl/JQuYLg) 2:1 system lying around. These were the speakers I replaced with the A2+ because one of satellites started going bad. Luckily, I realized that the subwoofer can be detached from the satellites, and be directly plugged into the output on the back of the A2+ (you'll need an RCA to 3.5mm adaptor).
The sound is absolutely amazing! Of course, it's likely nowhere near as good as the pairing with an S8 or even the cheaper Polk Audio, Pioneer, or Yamaha subwoofers, but for now, I am more than happy with this budget setup.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on January 28, 2014
At first I was hesitant to spend $250 on computer speakers, however, over the past few years my laptop has become my primary source anything and everything media related. I've actually reached the point where I don't even turn on my TV or stereo anymore. So I asked myself, "If I was willing to invest in a $250 sound bar for my TV, why have I not upgraded the speakers for a device I use daily?" I'm happy to say that I made the right choice with these speakers.
-Excellent build quality
-Compact form factor, but feels substantial
-Looks sleek and stylish in black
-High quality packaging - the speakers, wires, etc, all came bundled in individual soft bags
-Rear volume knob (it keeps the front looking clean, but a front knob would have been more user friendly)
-The speakers stands are sold separately for $30. I'd still recommended them but there's no denying they're overpriced.
-The built-in DAC is only 48 kHz (would have preferred 96 kHz)
-If you're in the market for high quality, compact speakers and you're willing to spend a few extra dollars then these are absolutely the way to go.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on February 24, 2015
I was waiting till I had these good and broken in (definitely needs it) to get a feel for how much I appreciate/dislike them. Well, it's definitely the former... these things sound incredible. The first week I could hear the muddiness some people complained about, but I'd just let them play when I left the house. A few weeks later they're crystal!
I picked up the speaker stand, little pricey for a piece of plastic, but as I'm taller I wanted these directed at me. Due to my dual monitor configuration I wound up putting them on their side, on the stand and have been perfectly happy with the sound this way.
I tried the internal DAC vs the stereo out on my motherboard. I play mostly compressed audio, so the difference was really hard to distinguish. I wound up sticking with the motherboard stereo output due to the ability to plug my headphones into the front of the case and the sound card software automatically switches the speakers off.
Bass response: For apartment dwelling... these are definitely adequate bass response. I was actually a little shocked for a 2.75" woofer. Adding a sub would really open up the range tremendously, but I'd rather not annoy my neighbors with "thump bump dump".
I attached a photo of the speaker on its side, on the stand, under my 24" monitor.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on March 23, 2015
I have this for a little while, been playing them constantly as a matter of fact.
Now that I feel satisfied I have played them enough time to properly break them in I have to say these are, without a doubt, the best 2.0 PC speakers I have ever owned. Throughout the years I have had Klipsch, Razr, Logitech, Harman Kardon, Bose, and other less known brands in different configurations. I also own some Sennheiser HD700, HD595 and a B&W P7, I am not an audiophile but I do enjoy listening to my music with good gear! Its about not how loud, or how boomy they are, its the level of detail, clarity and warmth the A2+ provide compared to the brands I mentioned. I have to disclose I am reviewing these speakers with the Audioengine A8 thrown in the mix (I had the A2+ for a few days without it though) by themselves they managed some pretty decent low freqs, but they lacked the oomph, so I added the sub (you can use pretty much any sub you want) these speakers main attraction is their ability to give excellent, detailed mid's and highs. As such I heartily recommend them.