Best Bookshelf Speakers Of 2020
Bookshelf speakers are ideal if you’re operating in a small or medium space but still want to maximize volume and sound quality. They don’t take up anywhere near as much room as unwieldy floor speakers, and the right ones can still pack an audio punch.
Here’s a rundown of the best bookshelf speakers of 2020.
Not only is the Lumina the most compact set of speakers on the list, but it also offers some of the best sound. Quality materials deliver a deep and precise sound regardless of where they're placed. Wood, leather and natural composite drivers resonate beautifully with a tone that's warm, welcoming and extremely engaging. These speakers perform well at high volumes and are especially adept at reproducing crisp highs and lows. They're designed for optimal function in any position, so they will produce hearty, room-filling sound whether they're close to a wall or on a high shelf.
It’s hard to compile any list of the best speakers without mentioning B&W at least once. The brand is perennially popular and with good reason. Their speakers are renowned for pristine sound quality that holds up even at the highest volumes. The 606 Anniversary speakers might be substantially smaller than some of B&W’s other offerings, but they don’t sacrifice sound quality in pursuit of space. They're a class act, incorporating all the technology of larger B&W models including the Continuum cone and Decoupled Double-dome tweeter. Purity and immersion are the bywords of these speakers. They'll reproduce your music with the utmost accuracy, and you'll find yourself picking out plenty of previously unheard details.
They certainly aren’t the smallest addition to the list and most people will find that they also require a dedicated shelf to house them, but the Lintons are nonetheless some of the best bookshelf speakers around. Wharfedale is a big name in the world of speakers, and their Linton range is particularly famous. They offer a highly distinctive sound that's variously described as "rich," "warm" and "natural" but is much more than the sum of those words. Sound quality is extremely detailed, but these speakers are worth your time simply for the difficult-to-define, classic Wharfedale sound that's been so popular for over 50 years. Despite their imposing looks, they're far from the most expensive speakers on the list, and even with the accompanying stands, they should suit most budgets.
If you're looking for speakers that operate on the cutting edge of technology with a lot of innovations under the hood, the Sonjas are for you. YG's various patents include the BilletDome tweeter (a tweeter that combines the best of hard and soft domes) and ViseCoil, which negates any vibration and reduces residual loss, boosting clarity. BilletCore technology is made from aircraft-grade materials and provides unbelievable dynamics. It also guarantees accuracy and means that you'll experience your music collection like never before. These speakers cram a lot of technology into a necessarily small space, but the big takeaway is a clear and dynamic sound with virtually no loss of clarity, even at the highest volumes.
The diminutive BRXs are one of the smallest bookshelf speakers on the list, so they’re ideal if space is at a premium. Don’t be fooled by their diminutive outer casing, though. These speakers have a lot going on beneath the surface and are capable of serious sound. They come with a 6-inch driver for bass/midrange and a high-velocity tweeter. Bass is powerful and responsive thanks to infrasonic radiators on the sides of the speakers. Their futuristic looks may not be to everyone's tastes, but they’re right at home in a more contemporary living space. Black paint lacquer gives them a stylish and thoroughly modern aesthetic.
The second Bowers and Wilkins bookshelf speakers to make the list, the 607s are the slightly cheaper of the two. That’s not to say that they sacrifice anything in the way of sound quality, however. They feature the same Continuum cone as the more expensive models along with updated crossovers, ensuring incredible resolution. Due to their clarity and room-filling abilities, they're the speaker of choice for surround sound setups and home cinemas. Accuracy of sound is guaranteed via the Decoupled Double Dome tweeter, which offers a virtually unparalleled 38kHz breakup. It’s hard to go wrong with speakers from Bowers and Wilkins, and these diminutive bookshelf models are a high-quality addition to the range.