Edifier S2000MKIII Review
We’ve made it no secret for years that we’re quite a fan of Edifier’s bookshelf speakers. Certainly, if you are looking for a set that will also look good on your desk, in other words, that is useful for both your PC use and listening to music, you can hardly ignore them.
- Great sound quality
- A variety of inputs
- OLED display shows status
- No subwoofer output
- The power cable is not removable
- Treble is a little slimy at lower volume
Unfortunately, most manufacturers have left that market or make a “must-have” every few years, often with bizarrely high-power claims, only to sound like a cookie tin. And in the meantime, Edifier has also suffered from enormous shortages and unaffordable containers in a market with a wide range of speakers. A bit of the “good guy” in this day and age, and we love that.
Even from our luxurious position, the reality is that no fewer than three rooms here are equipped with Edifier speakers. But, of course, we don’t do that because we have an opinion about the brand, but only because we think they:
- a) Sound good
- b) Because they are damn practical with their inputs
These are the iconic S1000DB (big boy bookshelf speakers, now it is due for an MKII), the G2000 (affordable and compact 2.0 set), and the S880DB (mid-size, combines a beautiful sound with an attractive white design). Every one of these speakers we can still easily recommend today.
Today, however, I’m going to talk about a newer “big boy” set, the S2000MKIII—an active speaker set with many connection options and quite a few kilos. Again, not a budget set, but if this is within your reach, definitely one to seriously consider.
My (extremely positive) review about the S1000DB is now more than five years old. At the time, it was Edifier’s largest bookshelf speaker. That must have been a success for them because since then, they have released the necessary successors and relatives in that big boy class, a revision, the S2000 series, the S3000 series, and a few other derivatives. And terms like “big” and “big boy” aren’t an exaggeration; they’re almost 20cm wide, 28cm deep, and just under 35cm high. Oh, and together they weigh 17 kilos; think of your back when the package is delivered.
These are speakers that require a lot of space on your desk (or cabinet or bookshelf). Size normally benefits sound, but it’s a valid point if you prefer something smaller. The enormous size was one of the reasons that the lady here chose the S880DB over the older S2000; not everyone will be charmed by monsters on your desk, no matter how sturdy and chic wood they may be.
However, if you have that space, it’s nothing but enjoyment because these things sound fantastic. The large size provides large primary drivers, excellent tweeters, and a bass reflex port on the back. It delivers a lot of volumes if you want it, but above all, a nice full sound at more practical volumes, plus what a good speaker from a mediocre distinction, still good detail when you set the volume very low. It’s that flexibility that makes these sets so great, in my opinion. Popping now and then, and then enjoying quietly again with some background music.
You have 4 EQ profiles plus a separate bass and treble knob to adjust the sound to your liking if you find the standard “everyone’s friend” sounds a bit too neutral. That neutral is my preference for a PC speaker because we also use the PCs for video and games, so you don’t want excessive bass. Not that the bass isn’t there, on the contrary. The lack of a subwoofer may disappoint a hard-thumping fan, but a hefty box like this delivers more than enough “low” to throw a small party in your room, provide loud music styles with enough oomph, and enjoy yourself for a while, of action movies. The sound is never a point of discussion for me; this sounds fantastic.
Like other Edifier sets, it is also a practical device. You have two analog inputs, an optical input, and Bluetooth 5.0 support with AptX to stream sound from your mobile phone. However, I would have liked to see USB audio on the S880DB instead of the coax connection; for example, I wonder if anyone still uses it.
One element that Edifier seems to have struggled with for years is the remote controls. The S2000MKIII has a sturdier and, above all, more practical remote control than the old S1000DB. You can now easily skip through your Spotify playlist from your phone, switch between inputs and switch the four profiles. Kudos for the tight, flat monitor setting because that will be appreciated by everyone who is involved in making music (or other audio) themselves. However, the separate bass and treble adjustment are only accessible via the back of the speaker.
Of course, Edifier is not completely insensitive to the concept of “diminishing returns.” For example, someone with little sensitive ears will probably not be able to immediately distinguish between an S1000DB or an S2000 series, although that will become clear as soon as you can put them next to each other. We have not yet tested the newer S1000MKII. But the Edifier S2000MKIII offers more powerful primary drivers, a (technically at least) better tweeter, plus a better remote control, including monitor mode.
Conclusion on the Edifier S2000MKIII
I’ve said it before, reviewing Edifier bookshelf speakers is extremely difficult. It is a brand that consistently produces 2.0 sets that offer a lot for their price. Whether we are talking about the affordable R1280T or the Edifier S2000MKIII, the summary is always roughly the same:
- They are physically neat speakers
- Sound excellent for the asking price
- Are damn practical as active speakers with numerous connections
And that is, of course, good news if you are looking for speakers in any price range.
The difference between the Edifier S2000MKIII and, for example, the sub R1280T is that the S2000MKIII does everything in the (triple) superlative. The build and finish of these cabinets are excellent, and they don’t sound good, but just phenomenal, especially for the money. Of course, you do not expect less for the price, but this can easily compete with many speakers that cost double that. If your speaker budget is even remotely close to these guys, and you have the physical space for it, I wouldn’t hesitate for a second.