Your computer is not only a means for work; it's a playground for music, movies, games, and other entertainment. So, when you're grooving to pop beats or engrossed in an action flick, the last thing you want is a mediocre experience because of poor audio quality. Amplify the sound from your desktop or laptop with a set of computer speakers.
Most computers aren't equipped with powerful speakers. Built-in computer speakers may be adequate for everyday alerts and occasional YouTube videos, but they probably won't deliver the immersive sound you're craving when you're strategizing with teammates in your favourite MOBA or playing DJ at your house party. Consider a computer speaker system when you want a louder, more entrancing listening experience.
Consider your computer setup when searching for your ideal speakers. Wired computer speakers are ideal for a desktop setup, while wireless speakers suit those who prefer easy portability. Wireless computer speakers with Bluetooth, AirPlay, or NFC will also allow you to connect other devices like a smartphone or tablet. Other features to look out for include external volume controls, a mute button, or a headphone jack.
Computer speakers are available in various configurations, including 2.0, 2.1, and 5.1. A 2.0-channel speaker system features a left and right speaker, while a 2.1-channel system includes subwoofer to amplify bass and other low notes. For music and casual entertainment, a 2.1-channel computer speaker system is a sound choice. If you're a hardcore gamer or cinephile, consider a 5.1-channel system for a surround sound experience.
Each pair of speakers recommended below has been reviewed by What Hi-Fi's team of audio experts. We have tested every aspect from build quality and if they're suited to small spaces, how the different inputs perform, whether it's easy to use, and to sound quality, of course.
When it comes to purchasing a pair of PC speakers for your laptop/computer desktop system, size will no doubt be a factor in your buying decision. All of the pairs of computer speakers that we've tested below are inherently from the more compact end of the speaker market and better suited to being perched on a desk than the majority of stereo speakers. Only have room for a one-box unit You should check out our best Bluetooth speakers guide instead.
But it isn't just size that matters; one of the invariable beauties of having speakers within your workspace is that they can connect easily to your phone or laptop. Some of the computer speakers below can connect over Bluetooth so you needn't worry about unsightly cables trailing all over your desk space, while others require connecting over, say, USB via a cable. Some even support wi-fi and have network streaming smarts integrated, while others can connect to your TV and even turntable to make a neat, compact system.
Crucially, they also sound the part. The M20 speakers sound full, loud, spacious and energetic. For affordable speakers that pack in so much, we're impressed with how refined and detailed they manage to sound.
If you have a smaller room or want speakers that will flank your desktop, the LSX II will happily oblige with a clear, musical sound and a fine sense of rhythm that has us tapping a foot or finger along to whatever we play through them. They're fantastic. Nothing else really comes close at this level.
What Hi-Fi is all about comparative testing, so we listen to every pair of computer speakers we review against the current leader in its field to gauge how it compares to the best-in-class competition. We keep What Hi-Fi Award winners, such as the Ruark MR1 Mk2 in this category, in our stockrooms so we can always put new products against ones we know and love.
We are always impartial in our testing and ensure we hear every pair of computer speakers at their optimum in the scenarios they are intended for. We'll use them with different partnering source kit (phones and computers, for example) as well as play different types of music through them. Naturally, we give them plenty of listening time (and time to run in).
Really, testing computer speakers is pretty similar to testing 'standard' speakers and soundbars, in that we are testing their tonality, left/right balance, vocal clarity and overall musicality (by which we mean their rhythmic, organisation and timing abilities).
From all of our reviews, we choose the top computer speakers to feature in this Best Buy. That's why if you take the plunge and buy one of the products recommended here, or on any other Best Buy page, you can rest assured you're getting a What Hi-Fi-approved product.
We've been busy putting a few bookshelf speakers through their paces to add newer and better products for you to choose from. This month, we have a new entry: the Edifier MR4, an affordable pair of studio monitors that sound great if a little lacking in the low-end.
The Logitech Z407 offers great value in an affordable and appealing package. These minimalist, capsule-shaped speakers deliver great sound quality and a decent amount of volume while offering wireless connectivity, two physical input options, and a versatile design.
That subwoofer is surprisingly powerful for its size as well, producing a good amount of rumble for those intense game and movie moments. If you think that computer speakers are becoming obsolete, these will certainly change your mind.
The Razer Leviathan V2 Pro is proof that you can get away with a space-saving setup and still have a truly immersive experience. This soundbar-sub combo is a fantastic audio solution if you want a 5.1 speaker system for your desk but don't necessarily have the space to accommodate that kind of setup.
Razer's brilliant plan here isn't just to put five drivers in a single - and relatively compact - soundbar, add a downward-firing sub, and let it all lose. This offering also comes with thoughtful features such as head tracking AI, different audio modes, and customizable RGB lighting, all of which contribute to your audio immersion. And, it's more affordable than you might think.
It isn't perfect. During testing, we found that the high end to be a lacking and the mids sometimes sounding a little muddy. However, it makes up for those with a powerful bass that can literally make a small room shake, great sound imaging, and a surprisingly wide soundstage. It's definitely one of our favorite computer speakers in 2023.
While we did find it to take up a little more desk space than we would like, we still heartily recommend them. Of course, if you have an unusually cramped desk or are on a budget, you might have to look elsewhere. But, those one-inch silk dome tweeters and five-inch woofers do sound glorious when you turn them up.
The Edifier G2000 may be the among the tiniest computer speakers you'll ever see, but don't let that small footprint fool you. These popular offerings from Edifier are more potent than they look in terms of audio and punch above their weight in connectivity as well. 59ce067264