Audioengine A2+ review
Audioengine A2+ is a perfect example that good things come in small packages.
They are not cheap compared to the size for a computer or bookshelf speakers, but being self-powered and using high-quality materials like kevlar and a glossy finish, the price is reasonable. Also, they come with a 3-year warranty, which speaks a lot about the manufacturer’s confidence in their speakers’ quality.
- Compact design
- High-end finish
- Connects to multiple sources
- Great dynamics
- A bit pricey
- Mid-range coarseness
Audioengine A2s+ are small speakers measuring only 15 x 10 x 13 cm, and the weight is 4 lbs for the left and 3 lbs. for the right. But their size is not an indicator of their performance.
A2s are rock solid and come in a beautiful glossy white or black, 18 mm thick MDF cabinet, reinforced to reduce unwanted vibrations and resonance. The nice thing is that these speakers are video shielded, so there will be no red and green abbreviations if placed next to a TV or PC monitor.
They have a 2 cm silk dome tweeter with neodymium magnets and a 7 cm Kevlar drive with advanced voice coils, ensuring the woofers will last long and endure over time.
Typical for Audioengine, all parts and connectors come in lovely velvet-ish drawstring bags.
The left speaker has built-in amplification (2 x 15 W), a pair of RCA inputs (for home theater systems, record players), a 3.5 mm input (for computer, iPod, Playstation), volume control, and a connection to the right speaker. The right speaker is the passive one and has only speaker cable binding posts on the back.
The 3.5 mm input is to join your MP3 player of choice to the left speaker via the headphone socket. That means you will not be able to charge your player.
The Audioengine A2+ are capable of delivering top-notch sound. They can get loud without losing clarity, but the timbre can’t make the final touch because of the small size. The bass is there and holds tight, but of course, it can’t hit the low-lows as some subwoofer could. That is why they sound better for music and not so much for movies. At the bottom of the speaker are vents that breathe out lots of air when played at a higher volume, perceptible on the face.
They need a couple of days to set in, but they are ready to deliver a clear and neutral tone after the burn-in period without exaggerating the highs or lows.
Often, small loudspeakers have their cone of perfection, a small area around them where they sound great. That is not the case with A2s. They sound good not only when you are near them but also when you leave the room.
No matter if you play house, techno, or classical music, you can hear some driver break up at the maximum volume levels. But, once you turn down the volume a bit, these speakers produce relatively undistorted sound.
Vocals are close enough to what much larger speakers could produce. The highs never become aggressive or irritating.
Another good thing is the delightful dynamics for speakers this size. Usually, small speakers squash the dynamics. If you listen to some classical piece with various instruments and choirs, it is impressive how A2 produces all these complicated passages. Even when you have a huge bass drum, the sound is defined and not making other instruments disappear or create a mid-range driver’s distorted sound.
Rotating the speakers left or right and changing the tilt produces interesting 3D effects. Also, depending on the angle, the levels of bass vary as well. That means they are more sensitive to positioning than other products of this type.
When it comes to the soundscape, the way the instruments occur in the hall, the right to left staging is good. You can play with the depth by experimenting, but there is terrific sound development if you have the A2 speakers angled outward at 43 degrees.
After listening to the Audioengine A2+ speakers for some time, without a doubt, they are the right choice for people who desire small speakers with great power. Take note that if your computer’s internal sound card is not good enough, these speakers have the resolution to bring up that issue.
If you pair them with an excellent sound source, be sure that you would enjoy many hours of musical pleasure without distortion or the sound of the usual plastic junk.