The best PC speakers for any budget

Multimedia entertainment and voice communication are two of the biggest advancements that PCs enable. After all, nobody likes cat videos or Zoom calls without sound. The most common and versatile way to equip your PC with audio is a pair of speakers or, for that matter, several speakers arranged in a surround-sound setup.

What to consider before buying computer speakers

Cost of computer speakers 

There are numerous specifications to consider, but in general, you can get a good pair of computer speakers without spending a fortune. At the low end, a functional pair of speakers is only about $20, but you’ll make serious sacrifices in terms of both sound quality and features at that price. For $40-$70, you’ll find something with a bit more volume, fuller range and longer lifespan.

For a significantly more immersive and entertaining experience overall, consider a speaker set with a matching subwoofer. While all-range speakers are more effective than ever, they can’t replicate the satisfying rumble of a standalone sub. Quality 2.1-channel setups start at or just above $100, and upping your budget to roughly $200 will get you something nice.

If you really demand peak audio performance or, for example, are configuring a home theater PC setup, look into full-on surround sound sets. Both 5.1- and 7.1-channel sets are relatively common at reasonable prices. You can find essentially all-inclusive surround sound sets for starting around $300, and you can spend basically as much as you want on one.

Headphones vs. computer speakers

Headphones are great for computers, especially if you play any games that support simulated headphone surround sound. Naturally, headphones are ideal for using a PC anywhere you can’t make much noise.

The drawback to using headphones is that you’ll never get the kind of immersion that comes from real speakers and a powerful subwoofer. It’s also especially difficult for more than one person to enjoy content at the same time using headphones.

Bluetooth speakers 

The common portable Bluetooth speakers that boast internal batteries and sometimes waterproof constructions will work with any Bluetooth-enabled PC. However, they’re not ideal for most media because their amplifiers and left/right stereo implementation aren’t usually that great.

By contrast, there are quite a few PC-focused speaker sets that feature Bluetooth connectivity in addition to multiple wired inputs. Some of these even support advanced codecs such as aptX and aptX HD, which allow for wireless streaming at CD quality or better. If you want to allow guests or family members to connect to your speakers and play their music with ease, keep an eye out for a 2.1-channel set that accepts Bluetooth connections.

Best computer speakers

Logitech Z407

Logitech Z407

As we’ve come to expect from Logitech, this set offers robust connectivity, premium build quality and long-term reliability. It includes a powerful subwoofer, low-profile full-range speakers and a wireless controller that lets you play, pause and adjust volume and bass from afar.

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AudioEngine A1

AudioEngine A1

These especially versatile bookshelf speakers deliver great sound at a moderate price. Due to dependable wireless connectivity and a flat response curve that’s good for a wide range of content, these are a good choice if you use your computer for more than playing games and watching cat videos.

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Creative Pebble Plus 2.1

Creative Pebble Plus 2.1

It won’t win any awards for high-resolution playback, but this three-way setup is about as affordable as a 2.1-channel system gets. In addition to its low price, it takes up little desk space, and uses so little electricity that you can power it with most USB ports.

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Logitech Z333

Logitech Z333

This speaker and subwoofer combination strikes an excellent balance between price and performance, costing well under $100 but producing a surprisingly large amount of sound. It has RCA and 3.5-millimeter stereo connections as well as a wired control puck for easy access to volume adjustment.

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Creative Labs GigaWorks T20 Series II

Creative Labs GigaWorks T20 Series II

These midrange speakers from longtime digital audio manufacturer Creative Labs sport a two-way design that ensures a consistent response at relatively lower frequencies than most simple PC speakers.

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Cyber Acoustics CA-3602FFP

Cyber Acoustics CA-3602FFP

It’s a budget-friendly 2.1-channel setup with a pair of drivers in each full-range speaker, which makes it especially effective in the midrange and high end of the spectrum. While it lacks most advanced features, it’s both affordable and reliable.

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Razer Nommo Chroma

Razer Nommo Chroma

If you’re outfitting your PC with fun RGB accessories, there are few better choices than this one. Its subtle lighting adds ambience while the 3-inch glass fiber drivers and rear-facing bass ports combine to deliver above-average sound quality.

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AudioEngine A2+

AudioEngine A2+

Although somewhat expensive, these bookshelf speakers are even popular among budget-minded audiophiles. On top of their powerful digital signal processor and low-distortion amplifiers, they sport reliable wireless connectivity and the aptX codec for high-resolution Bluetooth streaming.

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Logitech Z906

Logitech Z906

If you’re willing to set up a multipoint speaker system, this 5.1-channel option is one of the best. It provides impressive immersion, especially if you like games and movies that support surround sound. It can get remarkably loud, comes with a convenient remote control and can be connected to up to six devices at once.

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Redragon GS510 Waltz

Redragon GS510 Waltz

Redragon isn’t known for premium equipment, but instead for good-quality electronics at impressively low prices. This pair of RGB-enabled speakers fits the bill perfectly, with a low price, durable build quality and reasonable sound quality.

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Klipsch ProMedia 2.1

Klipsch ProMedia 2.1

It’s no stranger to premium, cinema-quality speakers, so it’s no surprise that Klipsch offers some of the best compact PC audio you can find. It consists of a 6.5-inch side-firing subwoofer, midrange and tweeter drivers in each satellite and THX certification that ensures well-mastered content will sound great.

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Razer Leviathan

Razer Leviathan

Anyone who’s been around the gaming industry for a while has probably heard of Razer and its great reputation for gaming hardware. Its subwoofer and  sound bar combination are perfect for the streamlined setups that perfectionist gamers demand.

Sold by Amazon

 

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Chris Thomas writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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