December 20

Best Powered Bookshelf Speakers under $200



If you are here reading this post, I can assume you have a bookshelf (or two). You may have books on the shelves, OR you may have other things sitting on there. I am totally not judging you.......


You really should reserve a spot for some good bookshelf speakers, because after all, they are versatile, and as far as I am concerned you can NEVER have to many speakers in a room.

In this post we will breakdown two good different speaker sets. They are both under $200 and you really cannot go wrong with either of these.

Best Powered Bookshelf Speakers Under $200

Edifier R1280DB Powered Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers

If you know anything about us, you know that we absolutely prefer wired connections vs. Bluetooth connectivity. Wired connections just sound better.

I know a lot of you out there want that short wave wireless tech, so we like the Edifier R1280DB because it actually has the best of both worlds, and it is really one of the best powered bookshelf speakers under $200.

And they said that you can't please everyone!

Half the battle of bookshelf speakers is that they should actually look good. This model has two different options depending on your preference. 

They offer an all-black model with a black wood grain finish, and also one with a nice brown wood grain finish. I personally prefer the brown wood, but hey, who am I to judge your personal design preferences!

Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $200
Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $200

In addition to the wireless connectivity, this model has a few wired options for you.

  • Two RCA inputs
  • Optical input
  • Coaxial input

If you want to plug in your mobile device directly into the speakers, just get a 3.5mm to RCA jack adapter and you are good to go.

If you are connecting a receiver, I recommend you use the optical jack, as the sound quality is better than the RCA.

These are a set, so one of the speakers are active and one is passive. This means that one unit has all of the controls and the other just connects to the main unit. You may also hear the terms Master (active) and Slave (passive).

The bass driver is 4 inches and the treble driver is 13mm (about .5in).

As far as size goes, each speaker is 5.75in wide - 9.5in high - 7in deep.

It comes with a remote, so you are ready to jam your music right away.

The speakers come with a two year warranty, so you are covered on that end.

These are a nice buy for about $130. Edifier actually has several other models, all at various price points, but overall, we like these.

Fluance Ai40 Powered Two-Way 5" 2.0 Bookshelf Speakers

Fluance Ai40 Powered 5” Bookshelf Speakers
Fluance Ai40 Powered 5” Bookshelf Speakers

If you want to spend a little more of that cash for some really good speakers, you might want to consider the Fluance Ai40 Bookshelf Speakers.

Once again, these are some good looking speakers. They have three different color schemes:

  • Black Ash
  • Walnut
  • Lucky Bamboo

I love to start off with the visual appearance, because if we are being real here, there are many people who buy products based on the way they look. Normally that is not the right way to go, but in this case you can absolutely buy this product on looks. You can do that because this product is also sonically appealing. It just takes one listen to know that you made the right choice.

The pair is similar to the Edifier, as one speaker is active and one is passive. The connections on the back have RCA inputs and the left speaker out connectors. They do not, however have the coaxial and optical connections.

This is also has Bluetooth connectivity for the wireless freedom.

The bass driver is 5 inches and the tweeter cone is 1 inch. 

As far as size goes, each speaker is 6.5in wide - 10.9in high - 7.6in deep.

They also include some goodies for you in the box. In addition to the remote control, you also get a 3.5mm to RCA cable. 

You can't have too many of those!

Since we were talking about the remote, one other cool thing we should mention is that the Fluance speakers are compatible with all models of the Logitech Harmony universal remotes, so you can program that bad boy to control these speakers.

These speakers also come with a two year warranty, so you are covered on that end.

These will run you about $199, so the price is still reasonable. We think these sound a little better than the Edifier line, BUT we prefer the optical connection on the Edifier.

Best Powered Bookshelf Speakers Under $200


Here is a table that breaks down the particulars:

Edifier 1280DB

Fluance Ai40

Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $200
Fluance Ai40 Powered 5” Bookshelf Speakers


RCA, optical, coaxial



Woofer: 4in

Woofer: 5in

Tweeter: 13mm



Power Output:

21 watts + 21 watts

Power Output:

35 watts + 35 watts


5.75in x 9.5in

x 7in


6.5in x 10.9in x 7.6in





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