10 Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $500 of 2017

There are a number of best bookshelf speakers under $500 available today. The most important things to consider when purchasing the best bookshelf speakers under 500 dollars is the type of music you listen too most frequently and the size of the room.

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

In the list below, several bookshelf speakers are sold separately while several come in pairs. Consider the overall cost to purchase a pair of the best bookshelf speakers under $500 to determine the overall value versus quality and cost

Top 10 Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $500 Comparison Guide

PictureNamePriceRating (1-5)
PictureNamePriceRating (1-5)
1. Cambridge Aero 2 Bookshelves$$5.0
2. NHT C Series C-3 3-Way Bookshelf Speaker$$$$4.9
3. Polk Audio RTI A1 Bookshelf Speakers$$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$$4.7
8. NHT Classic Three Bookshelf Loudspeaker $$$4.7
9. Bose 301-V Stereo Loudspeakers $$$4.4
10. ELAC B6 Debut Series 6.5" Bookshelf Speakers by Andrew Jones $$4.1

5 Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $500 Reviews

1. Cambridge Aero 2

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 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 bookshelf speakers especially good for strange shaped rooms because 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 speakers are affordable, durable, and sound absolutely terrific on all types of music but 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

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 bookshelf speakers deliver uncolored, unbiased, accurate, highly detailed sound throughout all the frequencies. These best bookshelf speakers have a surprisingly large soundstage that brings the music to life. These speakers give the sensation of surround sound.

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

If you want a high performance set of bookshelf speakers for a very affordable price then these Polk speakers may fit the bill. The midrange 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 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, even hard rock. 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

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 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 to the bass frequencies. These best bookshelf speakers under $500 are beautiful to look at as well as to listen to.

5. Audioengine P4

If you already have a receiver and amp you should consider Audioengine’s P4 Premium passive bookshelf speakers. These are small but powerful 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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