Home tools Buyer's Guides from tech enthusiast who loves technology and clever solutions for better living.
Best bookshelf speaker stands 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]Last Updated October 1, 2019
Best bookshelf speaker stands of 2018
If you get well acquainted with these basics, you shouldn’t have a problem choosing a bookshelf speaker stands that suits your need. I’ve based my selection methodology on customer feedback, the size, functionality, and budget to meet various demands.
Not all bookshelf speaker stands are created equal though. Based on customer reviews and my own experience with the cowboy method I’ve found the best 3 bookshelf speaker stands on the market.
Test Results and Ratings
Why did this bookshelf speaker stands win the first place?
The product is very strong. Its material is stable and doesn’t crack. I was completely satisfied with the price. Its counterparts in this price range are way worse. I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing! I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product.
Why did this bookshelf speaker stands come in second place?
I recommend you to consider buying this model, it definitely worth its money. Seems that the material is good. It has a very beautiful color but I don’t really like the texture. This is a pretty decent product that perfectly fitted the interior of our office. I really liked it. It is amazing in every aspect. It did even exceed my expectations for a bit, considering the affordable price.
Why did this bookshelf speaker stands take third place?
This price is appropriate since the product is very well built. I hope that the good reputation of the manufacturer will guarantee a long-term work. It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment. I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new.
bookshelf speaker stands Buyer’s Guide
Argosy Classic Speaker Stands
The most basic consideration when shopping for speaker stands is the weight rating. Are the stands rated to handle the weight of your speakers? If not, that means the stands will likely be unstable when your speakers are placed on top. However, just because a manufacturer rates a pair of stands for the weight of your speakers, that doesn’t mean they will be as stable as you want. If you have kids or pets, you need to think about more than just weight rating. Other factors, such as the weight and height of the stand, and the size of the bottom plate, will give you a more complete picture of the stand’s stability.
Speaker stands are generally made of two materials, wood or steel. Both have their own merits. Wood stands tend to be less expensive as long as they use MDF with some sort of wrap; however, these stands don’t hold up well over time as the wrap is often times easily damaged. Solid wood stands are more durable, but are also much more probably fair to say that most stands on the market are constructed of steel.
Usually steel stands utilize a hollow main support, which means they can be speaker stands with sand, or some other material, is a common practice to improve stability and even sound quality. Additionally, steel stands tend to hold up better than wood because, well, they’re steel.
Base & Feet
Obviously, the wider and heavier the base, the more stable the stands will be. The base on the Sanus SF2Speaker Stands is 11”x14”, and they were quite stable during my review of the nearly 30lb Polk Audio LSiM703s. I’m not sure how heavy the base is, but the entire stand weighs about 16lbs. You will be hard pressed to find stands with a base much larger than 11″x14″.
The OmiMount Gemini stands feature interchangable base inserts used on carpet. The spikes punch through the carpet and pad to secure speaker directly to the subfloor underneath. If you are particularly concerned about stability, try to find stands that work with 3rd party outriggers, such as those from Soundocity.
Rahul is one of the original members of the ExtensivelyReviewed team. Born in Chennai and living most of his childhood in Kolkata, he originally moved to the United States for school and earned his electrical engineering degree at the University of Central Florida, graduating with honors. Rahul enjoys reviewing the latest electronics and gadgets.
Bookshelf speakers are great for anyone who enjoys listening to music and is willing to tolerate a bit more complexity in the setup than with typical Bluetooth speakers or whole-home audio systems. Bookshelf speakers can also perform almost identically to much larger tower speakers, with the exception of the lowest bass octaves, where a tower’s additional drivers kick in. You can remedy this shortcoming by adding a subwoofer, and in many cases the resulting setup will outperform a set of tower speakers.
A pair of passive bookshelf speakers will never become obsolete.
Used with a receiver, bookshelf speakers let you listen to your audio sources in full resolution. Unlike most wireless models, they aren’t limited to CD resolution, since you can connect any device to your receiver’s inputs. You can enjoy analog playback from vinyl, high-resolution digital audio from a computer or a media server, lossless Blu-ray soundtracks, and streaming content, of course—just hook up the source of your choice.
Even if you listen exclusively to streaming audio sources such as Spotify, a stereo setup using bookshelf speakers might still be better than wireless speakers. For instance, you can choose a stereo receiver that provides integrated Spotify or Bluetooth support, like the NAD D 3020 or Yamaha R-N30Or you can integrate the speakers into a Sonos setup with a Connect:Amp or use them in a home theater system.
A good set of speakers is an investment that will last longer than any other tech purchase. A pair of passive bookshelf speakers will never become obsolete. Speakers from 30 years ago still work today, after all, and you can find many people still using speakers from over 50 years ago, with modern electronics to power them. While modern speakers may benefit from advances in driver and crossover design, an older speaker will usually still work and will probably last longer than any other piece of gear you could buy today.
Who else likes our pick
What Hi-Fi gave the Q Acoustics 3020 set a perfect five-star rating and an award in 201for the best stereo speaker under £200. The reviewers found nothing to complain about with the performance for the price.
Ed Selley of AVForums was also a fan, giving the 3020 set a Highly Recommended award with an overall score of nine out of In his review, Selley writes that the speakers could offer more bass but says the set is well-built, easy to drive, and good sounding.
Flaws but not dealbreakers
The Q Acoustics 3020 set does not play as deep down as some competitors, but people after extra bass will do much better to pair these speakers with a budget subwoofer anyway. Most people won’t have an issue with the bass response, though.
If the Q Acoustics set is unavailable, the ELAC Debut Bpair is a close runner-up (and our previous pick). In our tests the sound quality was virtually the same as that of the Q Acoustics set, but the ELAC pair had slightly better bass response. The Bspeakers are also physically larger, their veneer finish is not as polished, and they are less efficient (so a receiver or amplifier will need around 30 percent more power to drive them as loudly).
The Bspeakers are larger than some other bookshelf models, and the finish isn’t attractive, but this set is a terrific value. And if you want to upgrade later to a surround-sound system, you can add a matching center channel, towers, or even Atmos modules.
Music sounds more refined and defined through the Q150 set compared with cheaper models; you could easily listen to these speakers for hours without your ears growing fatigued. During complex test tracks like Beck’s “Lost Cause,” the Q150 set made it easy for us to pick out individual instruments—even easier than with our top pick. On tracks like “Giorgio by Moroder” from Daft Punk, the Q150 pair managed to reproduce the bass line with depth and detail missing from other speakers. Overall this set captured more of the music than the less expensive speakers did.
The Q150 set comes in white or black finish, and KEF sells a matching center-channel speaker. Magnetic grills, to protect the speakers from kids and pets, are optional.
Each LS50 speaker includes a Uni-Q driver, similar to that of the KEF Q150 but a higher-end version. The Uni-Q driver here is made of a magnesium-aluminum alloy instead of standard aluminum as in the Q150. In general, the LS50 model ranks far beyond other speakers in build quality, as it’s very heavy and more solid, with virtually no resonance when you knock on the cabinet. The LS50 pair is the best bookshelf speaker set we listened to. It’s expensive, but it offers an audible difference.
This Pioneer set is the best option for the price, but stepping up provides easily noticeable benefits.
The Cambridge Audio Aero speakers were more compact than the other speakers we tried, and they sounded like it. The bass was quieter than the treble and midrange, and this pair was simply not as clear and defined as the larger bookshelf units.
The ELAC UBpair offered very good bass response and detail, but with a smaller soundstage. These speakers also had a less attractive finish and were harder to drive than some other models.
The Fluance XL7S pair produced a good soundstage but lacked bass, and the treble might be too bright for some listeners.
Micca’s MB42X set is small and compact, but in our tests this pair sounded poor next to all of the other contenders. The bass was lacking because of the small woofer, and the treble had a harsh, metallic sound. Beck’s voice during “Lost Cause” sounded different here than on everything else, as if the tonal balance of the speakers was wrong.
The Monitor Audio Bronze pair offered good bass response and a large soundstage, but the treble was muted next to that of other speakers. Instead of having too much treble, this set had too little compared with the midrange and bass, and it could make recordings sound dull as a result.
Monoprice’s Monolith K-BAS speakers use a bass port design that allows for extended response. They’re fairly tall black boxes that aren’t attractive, and while the bass was there in our tests, it wasn’t tight or detailed. Recordings sometimes sounded hollow, as if recorded inside a box.
Polk Audio’s RTI Aspeakers produced a large soundstage and lots of detail, but they had a particularly bright, forward treble that over time became hard to tolerate.
The Polk Audio TSi100 pair would have been our clear pick for an affordable speaker set if the company had not discontinued this model. In our tests this pair’s soundstage was more open than that of our Pioneer budget pick, with more clarity and very good bass. If you can find the TSi100 set, it’s a very good choice.
The Q Acoustics 2020i pair is compact but has an odd, awkward design. You connect the speaker cables on the bottom of each speaker, which can theoretically hide them but also might make these units hard to use on smaller speaker stands or other surfaces.
The Q Acoustics Concept 20 speakers had bright, clear treble but lacked authority in the bass department. The build quality is great, but we don’t see much need for bi-wiring speakers in this price range, and the included binding post connectors made it hard for us to use some banana plugs we had.
The SVS Ultra Bookshelf speakers’ extra-large, 6½-inch woofers produced a room-filling bass that the other speakers simply could not touch. This SVS pair’s bass went deeper, had better definition, and helped the speakers create a larger soundstage than their rivals mustered. If your tastes run more toward rock or hip-hop and less toward jazz or other acoustic music, or if you want impact from movie soundtracks without a subwoofer, the SVS set might be your best option. But most listeners will get more out of the KEF Q150’s superior midrange and treble performance.
Wharfedale’s Diamond 220 set had good detail and nice bass but sounded boxed in. These speakers produced a soundstage that was narrow and confined to the center of the room, while other speakers created a more expansive stereo image. Aside from the soundstage, the quality of the sound was good, and we liked the build of the speakers, but we all preferred a sound that was more open.
The MB5Stand series is a set of speaker stands design to complement our monitor speaker series. Constructed out of solid furniture board, the MB5Stand features a bottom heavy design and wide base that minimizes the risk of falls to protect your equipment. With enhanced, sound safeguarding technology, and integrated feet, the MB5Stand helps keep the music coming out with minimal interference.
The MB5Stand is finished with a sleek, wood-style grain that integrates seamlessly into both classic and modern spaces. The wood grain perfectly matches the MB5000 speakers to ensure the stand is an elegant counterpart to its speakers.
Monitor Speakers not Included
This product is built with the same quality found in all Technical Pro equipment ensuring it follows you from gig to gig over an extended lifespan. We stand by our work and every Technical Pro product comes with a one year warranty.
Every home theater enthusiast is after the best sound. Sound in the home theater plays a crucial role in achieving an immersive experience. In other words, a properly set home theater sound system is as important as the picture itself. Rather, some would tell you it is even more important to have better sound than having a bigger picture.
Having the best speakers does not necessarily imply the most expensive. It is true that good quality home theater speakers do not come cheap. But by best speakers we mean the most suitable home theater speakers that fit your budget for your room environment. This applies for each of the different speakers associated with the audio channels supported by your home theater system. It is here that this speaker guide comes in — to better explain the requirements associated with the different speakers in a multichannel speaker setup. We also discuss the differences between various types of home theater speakers to help you understand what to look for when making a purchase.
Main Left and Right Front Speakers
Highly rated speaker pair capable of sharp highs, solid bass and clarity across the full mid-range, ideal as main fronts in a surround sound setup.
These speakers handle the bulk of the sound, sound that moves between the left and right speakers in synchronization with the movement of the video content on the screen.
They also handle off-screen sound effects that fall outside the image field of view in the wider soundfield. In addition, the main fronts also serve as the two stereo channel speakers when listening to stereo music content.
What to look for
Main left/right home theater speakers come in all shapes and sizes. Full-range floor standing tower speakers give you the best performance especially in medium to large size rooms.
Mind you, big home theater speakers are not a pre-requisite for setting up a good home theater system especially if you will be installing a powered sub-woofer. But if as in most cases, you will also be using your multi-channel speaker setup for music listening and want to enjoy the very best sound, floor standing speakers represent the ideal option.
In addition, floor standing tower speakers are big enough to produce some serious bass, thus making it possible to do away with the subwoofer unit in the case of a medium size room. This setup will also give a better bass coverage across the room than a single dedicated subwoofer unit. But if you will be doing away with the subwoofer, remember to set your surround processor to route all bass to the tower speakers.
Most mid-range to high-end tower speaker designs use multiple 8-inch woofers; these have the surface area of a single larger subwoofer but enjoy the lower-mass and acceleration associated with woofers, for a deeper, fuller, and more accurate bass response.
Some towers come with a vented port to further enhance the bass response of the speaker while some high performance floor standing speakers come with build-in powered subwoofers; the latter are known as powered tower speakers. These home theater speakers offer better bass coverage across the room and the elimination of the separate subwoofer unit even in larger rooms, thus reducing the speaker clutter. able to better handle the rest of the sound, thus producing clearer sound with less distortion while supporting a wider dynamic range.
In a restricted room space environment, bookshelf speakers or small satellites/subwoofer speaker system represent possible alternatives. In particular, well positioned bookshelf speakers can produce really good sound and generally have sufficient bass for a small room. Even if the bass output is not enough, you can always complement a set of bookshelf speakers with a powered subwoofer unit; this gives you that extra bass during movie watching.
But do not let the term bookshelf mislead you. If you want to enjoy the best sound possible from a set of bookshelf speakers, do not place your bookshelf speakers, or in that case even satellites, on a bookshelf! Acoustic conditions on a bookshelf are far from ideal; instead, use appropriate speaker stands or wall mounts.
Satellite speakers are smaller than bookshelf and depending on their size and bass response, sats home theater speakers may not function independent of the accompanying subwoofer unit. In the case of satellite speakers, the sub will generally have to produce a wider range of frequencies to compensate for the small size of the sats. Well designed sats/sub speaker systems will produce superb sound in a small home theater room, but cheap speaker systems would often show signs of uneven response especially where the bass meets the midrange.
Bookshelf speakers and in particular satellite home theater speakers are best mounted using suitable wall stands. These speaker systems can deliver some relatively big sound from a small package, making them great space-saving home theater speaker options.
Rear-surround and back-surround speakers
The role of surround speakers — both the rear and back surrounds — is to produce the ambient sound such as the effect of an approaching low flying fighter jet or a rushing train. 5.home theater speaker systems use rear surrounds only while 6.and 7.speaker systems use the back surrounds as well.
Often when speaking of rear or back surround speakers, many just refer to these as surround speakers without differentiating between the two. in a home theater set-up.
With bookshelf and sats/subwoofer speaker systems, this is often the case. These require a suitable wall bracket or floor stand for the correct speaker placement as further detailed in our speaker placement guide.
But the use of identical speakers along all five to seven sound channels in a home theater speaker setup is not always a realistically achievable option especially when the fronts use full-size tower speakers; room space constraints and budget-issues are often the most common limiting factors.
Alternative options for surround speakers vary between direct-radiating (these are the conventional standard-type speakers) and dipole/bipole speakers. Dipole and bipole home theater speakers have drivers both in the front and back of the enclosure.
In dipole speakers, these drivers operate in out-of-phase mode, while in bipole speakers these operate in-phase. These speakers often come with a switch to operate the surround speaker in either dipole or bipole mode as well as in monopole i.e. with the rear driver switched off.
Polk Audio FXI ASurround Speakers shown above; these include a dipole/bipole switch to allow for different speaker placements on either the rear or side walls as detailed below.
Bipolar surrounds are becoming rare these days with the most common choice for surround speakers being between direct-radiating and dipole speakers. important as direct sound from the surround speakers can at times lead to annoying distractions especially with a not-properly balanced home theater speaker setup.
While both dipole and bipole surround speakers offer a more diffused soundfield, yet there is some significant difference between the two. Dipole surround speakers produce a more subtle and better diffused surround than bipolar surrounds while providing greater speaker placement flexibility.
If you place bipole/dipole surround speakers behind your listening position, these should be set to bipole mode for a more distinct, directional sound. When placed on the side, these should be set to dipole mode — firing to the front and rear of the room rather than towards the listening area — to create a more diffused soundfield for a more convincing wraparound effect.
THX recommends the use of dipole/bipole home theater speakers for rear surround (side surrounds positioned towards the rear of the side walls) and conventional direct radiating speakers for the back surrounds placed against the rear wall.
However be aware that the use of dipole/bipole surrounds option is best suited for medium to large home theaters that can accommodate multiple rows of seats. In the case of the small home theater taking just one row of seats, direct-radiating surround speakers will generally sound better.
Slide of 10
Andrew Jones is a legend in the speaker world, designing some of the best-sounding speakers ever made. Now, he designs for ELAC, and his Debut line is drawing raves. The two-way, 12.7 x 8.7x 7.87-inch Bproduces a full, realistic sound with rich bass response. If the Bis too pricey, check out the B4, which is slightly smaller but still benefits from Jones’ design expertise.
Once you have brought your speakers home, you need to find an adequate position in the room. The only requirement is that at finding ideal locations for speakers patience is needed. Although we will in a later section of this article use pictures to visualize the placement of the speakers in the room, these pictures do not need to blindly adhere to, they serve only as a framework, as a guide for finding the ideal position.
In finding the ideal position in the space, use one of higher quality recording, preferably some audiophile vinyl record.
Speakers should be placed so that their initial distance between them is 150cm MINIMUM. Mutual distance is always calculated from the middle of the bass unit on one speaker to the middle of the bass unit on the second speaker.
Place the speakers so that the listener form an equilateral triangle with a speakers (picture below). The distance between the speaker and the listener may not be less than the gaps between the speakers, otherwise in the middle of the sound image a hole will occur! In the triangle between the listener and the speaker should not be any objects.
Chair in which you sit while listening to music place in the center of the room and move it up and down until you find the ideal position where the listener will be. In any case, between the listener and the rear wall (nearest wall) should be a space of at least 50 cm. Armchair with low backrest is much better than a high-backed chair.
Once you are set up one-page triangle in a relation to the speakers, pull the chair back (picture below), generally 30 to 100 cm from the wall (experiment).
Turn the speakers towards the middle of the room to the listener, to 10-20 degrees (picture below).
If the TV is between of your speakers, then you can do two useful things that will improve the sound. First, if the TV and the speakers are in the same plane, pull the TV back to the wall (left and right image below), and pull the speakers in the front (TV is the object which interfere with the proper sound image creation). And secondly, when at the same time not watching TV and listening to the speakers, cover the TV with a cloth cover, because the TV screen is a source of unwanted reflections.
Consider This Before Choosing a Speaker Stand
Speaker Size. Have a look at the speakers you are planning on using the stand for. How big are they? Are they heavy? Buying a small, light weight, or cheap speaker stand for a pair of massive speakers makes little sense, as you could end up endangering both the speakers and the stand. Before buying one of the best speaker stands you should always check with the manufacturer to make sure the stand can hold the weight of your speakers.
Durability and Price. As tempting as it can be to pick the best speaker stands that come with the lowest price tag, make sure they live up to your expectations. Many times when buying speaker stands that are of lower quality, you are likely to end up paying a lot more in the long run. It is better to invest in a set of more expensive speaker stands rather than having to replace them. Bear in mind, however, that expensive doesn’t always mean best. Do your research.
The solution is to buy a pair of speaker stands, with fairly decent ones available from around £100 per pair but, as with all things hi-fi, the sky’s the limit. Ideally, the stands will be non-resonant and that means they will be quite weighty.
If you don’t want to splash out on speaker stands, you can try using dense concrete blocks from a builder’s merchant – and you may well be pleasantly surprised with the results. You can even stack them to achieve the necessary height, but take care to avoid having the blocks scratch the surfaces of your floor and speakers.
Basic Speaker Positioning
Begin by setting up the speakers in an equilateral triangle, where the distance between the speakers is the same as the distance between the speakers and the listening position – and with both speakers situated at equal distances from rear and side walls.
Floorboards, shelves and joists can resonate, which can skew bass response and waste acoustic energy. Stray vibrations can also annoy your neighbours and cause havoc with turntables. So a solid and stable base for your speaker ensures that the energy from your drive units is turned into sound waves rather than leeching away into the floor or setting the speakers in motion.
Some speaker stands are designed for filling with rice, dry sand or other materials to dampen resonance and inhibit vibration transfer. To further minimise unwanted energy transfer, it’s usual to minimise physical contact between the speaker and the surface it’s placed on.
Speaker spikes are commonly used by many hi-fi enthusiasts because they reduce physical contact to an absolute minimum. Spikes can be placed under floor-standing speakers or speaker stands. You may even place the spikes between the speaker and the stand, too, and they can be found quite cheaply.
Spikes are a virtually essential addition if your plan is to use floor-standing speakers or stands in a carpeted room, to prevent them from rocking back and forth. With spikes on wood or laminate floors, you’ll also need to buy some floor protectors to avoid making unwanted holes and scratches.
Some people prefer ceramic cones between speakers and stands, but opinions on their efficacy differ.
VESA patterns are measured by the center of one mounting hole to the center of another on the back of a television in millimeters. In the example above, the VESA measurements are 100 (width) x 100 (height). The example TV would be able to use a VESA 100 x 100 mount.
This is quite a debated topic but most audiophiles agree about the ill effects of glass. Fortunately none of the pro stand makers use it. Many others who did use it have also discontinued its use.
Most agree on the use of Metals, some use exotics like marble and some use combinations of wood and steel.
Mass & Weight of a Good Speaker Stand
Most of our speaker stands do not require sand filling due to their design and build quality. However we always tend to recommend it for better results. I have had good experiences with “Circa” which is nothing but the “attabites” used by Atacama. The advantage of using circa is that is does not absorb moisture. We use this for clients that live close to the ocean. White river sand is another filling I recommend my clients. It is cheap and easily available and we normally offer this for a very nominal cost. Lead is expensive and posisonous.Hence hazardous in homes with children.I very rarely recommend it.I normally recommend that the stand is filled 3/4th to lower the centre of gravity which in turn stabilizes the stand even more.
As for sturdiness
One of the most highly debated topics in Hifi.A science that requires a lot of experience to master.Currently I am writing only about guidelines and a practical approach.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your bookshelf speaker stands wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of bookshelf speaker stands
- №1 — Steel Fill-Able 24″ Speaker Stands for Medium to Large Bookshelf Speakers By Vega A/V
- №2 — Kanto S2 Desktop Speaker Stands for Small Speakers
- №3 — Atlantic Speaker Stands for Bookshelf Speakers up to 20 lbs – Pair