The 10 Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $500 for 2017

There are numerous bookshelf speakers under $500 available today. Many simply claim to be the best. Thus, finding the best bookshelf speakers under 500 dollars for your specific needs can be challenging. This is why we are helping you with our new 2017 Top 10 guide, expert reviews, and helpful tips.

We feel that the two most important things to consider when purchasing bookshelf speakers that cost less than $500 is the type of music you listen too most frequently and the size of the room that they will be placed in.

Another thing to think about is whether or not you will be adding bookshelf speakers to existing home theater speakers or stereo systems. If you use your bookshelf speakers as part of a bigger audio system, you will want to pair them properly to get the best sound possible.

Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $500 Top 10 Comparison Guide

PictureNamePriceRating (1-5)
PictureNamePriceRating (1-5)
1. Cambridge Aero 2 Bookshelf Speakers$$5.0
2. NHT C Series C-3 3-Way Bookshelf Speaker$$$$4.9
3. Polk Audio RTI A1 Bookshelf Speakers$$4.9
4. Klipsch RB-51 II Reference Series Bookshelf Loudspeakers$$4.9
5. Audioengine P4 Premium Passive Bookshelf Speaker$$$4.8
6. Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers$4,7
7. Polk Audio TSi200 Bookshelf Speakers$$4.7
8. Sony SSHA3/S Speaker System$$4.5
9. Bose 301-V Stereo Loudspeakers $$$4.4
10. ELAC B6 Debut Series 6.5" Bookshelf Speakers by Andrew Jones $$4.1

Reviews of the Top Rated Bookshelf Speakers Under $500

1. Cambridge Aero 2 Bookshelf Speakers

If you want robust speakers that provide an immersive sound experience and a large and cohesive soundstage these best bookshelf speakers under $500 are hard to beat. What makes these bookshelf speakers so fabulous is that they use balanced mode radiator drivers instead of tweeters. The BMR drivers are flat and use pistonic movement and surface vibration to disperse sound further and wider than a tweeter can. This makes these affordable bookshelf speakers especially good for odd shaped rooms as placement is not as important. The crossover happens at 250Hz instead of the more common 3kHz and this alone makes the sound smoother and more coherent throughout all ranges.

These bookshelf speakers are affordable, durable, and sound absolutely terrific with all types of music. We found that they excel with classical, acoustic, jazz, and R&B. The Cambridge Aero 2 are the best bookshelf speakers under 500 bucks on the market.

2. NHT C Series C-3 3-Way Bookshelf Speaker

The NHT C Series two bookshelf speaker offers several benefits over the previous model version including an improved soundstage, an extra half octave bass extension and greatly reduced distortion. The mid range is accurate, warm, and sweet. Overall, these best sub 500 dollar bookshelf speakers deliver uncolored, unbiased, accurate, highly detailed sound throughout all the frequencies. These bookshelf speakers also have a surprisingly large sound stage that brings the music to life giving the sensation of surround sound speakers.

If you are looking for a clean bass and well balanced sound throughout all ranges then these bookshelf speakers are a great value for the price.

3. Polk Audio RTI Bookshelf Speakers

If you want a high performance set of bookshelf speakers for a very affordable price then these Polk bookshelf speakers may fit the bill. The mid range of the these speakers is rich, detailed and uncolored. Perfect for listening to classical, jazz, and soft rock. The high frequency range also provides clean, detailed sound without the sharpness so often found in less expensive bookshelf speakers. The bass has a slight bump in the mid to upper bass that gives it more depth.

Overall, the sound is smooth throughout all ranges and provides a detailed, vibrant but warm and pleasing sound that works for well for all styles of music. This includes hard rock and hip hop. These best bookshelf speakers under $500 have plenty of power to spare and can handle high volume without distorting the sound.

4. Klipsch RB-51 Bookshelf Loudspeakers

If you have a medium sized room and you are looking for a great all purpose speaker for music and movies then Klipsch bookshelf speakers may be the perfect choice. The small footprint works great in smaller rooms. The sound from these bookshelf speakers is superior as well as the dynamic quality. These bookshelf speakers can handle very high volumes with accuracy and with less distortion than competitor models.

Excellent drivers and impressive crossover components provide accurate, clean, and smooth full frequency response. The bass goes down to 50Hz and, although it is not subwoofer frequency, it still delivers lots of power and punch. These best bookshelf speakers under 500 dollars are beautiful to look at as well as to listen to.

5. Audioengine P4 Premium Passive Bookshelf Speaker

If you already have an AV receiver and amp you should consider Audioengine’s P4 Premium passive bookshelf speakers. These are small but powerful bookshelf speakers with excellent bass response for their size. These little gems produce a rich, full bodied, coherent sound that is absolutely stunning and perfect for the subtleties of classical music. The speakers also have incredible accuracy and bring out the smallest details.

These bookshelf speakers handle high volume without distortion and provide a very lifelike soundstage that makes listening extremely easy on the ears. For the audiophiles out there these are a great value for high end passive bookshelf speakers.

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