The technology world always strives to head towards ultimate thinness, with phones and laptops getting more and more slimmer than ever before. But that's not always the case with audio. Bigger is always better with audio so if you are rocking a new laptop or have a desktop that lacks great audio we have some great picks that will improve your aural experience.
Best computer speakers (5.1 channel)
The Z906 with its 5.1 channel sound makes for a superb addition to your desktop or television because of its depth and punch in almost all the frequencies. You also get two cool ways of interacting with it depending on whether you are using it with a desktop or a television.
Best computer speakers (2.1 channel)
Harman Kardon SoundSticks III
With an otherworldly design by Sir Jony Ive and a permanent place in the Museum of Modern Art, New York the Harman Kardon Soundsticks III are a triumph of design and acoustic design. Delivering an excellent aural experience from the towers and foot thumping bass from the downward facing subwoofer the Soundsticks III deserves to be displayed prominently while you use them. Read our article on 2.1 channel speakers to know more about the Harman Kardon Soundsticks III.
Best computer speakers (2.1 channel)
Logitech Z625 THX
The Logitech Z625 is a brilliant 2.1 channel speaker for people who do not want to go overboard in terms of their budget and space. With thundering bass and a loud, clear sound, they are an excellent addition to your computer, laptop or television. Read more about how they perform in our 2.1 channel speakers article.
Best USB speakers for laptop (Budget)
The F&D V520 produces clear sound with decent bass in a package that's not just small on your table but light on your wallet as well.
This is a really long post! Use these links to jump around.
Why Trust Us?
To find the best speakers for your laptop and desktop we started by looking at suggestions from reputed technology websites like TechRadar, PCMag, and Whathifi?
Finally, we surfed through Amazon and Flipkart and picked some of their best sellers.
How we selected?
As we have said many times before, recommending an audio product is difficult due to the sheer variation in tastes of people. So we always recommend people to listen to an audio product before making a purchase.
The next important thing to keep in mind is not to get carried away with specifications and marketing tagline. Audio is one of the few categories where specifications and certifications don't always convert into a good experience.
We had previously written about speakers in our Best 2.1 channel speakers and Best Bluetooth speakers articles. The Bluetooth speakers are great when you use with a phone or even an MP3 Player as they give you portability and still sound better than the speaker on your smartphone. But they do lack when you pair them with a laptop or a desktop and you need a much more fuller sounding experience for your PC. This is when you need 2.1 channel speakers as they give you the high frequency as well as reproduce low frequencies much better due to their dedicated compartments. But these are not the only options available for your laptops and desktops as you can get high-quality studio speakers (2.0) or Bluetooth speakers (2.0) and even proper 5.1 channel speakers that will take your desktop movie watching to another level.
So to find the best speakers for your computer we looked through some of the biggest technology websites like SoundGuys, TechRadar, PCMag, Whathifi? for suggestions. From here we picked their highest rated and award-winning products. We also analyzed the best sellers from Amazon and Flipkart.
Best computer speakers (5.1 channel) - In-depth
Powerful and loud surround sound
Great value for a 5.1 channel speaker
Useful control panel along with remote control
Dolby Digital & DTS decoding
Lots of inputs (Aux, RCA, Optical)
No HDMI port
Wires not long enough
The Z906 is Logitech 5.1 channel rumbling monster of a speaker that's designed specifically to be used with computers. The design is similar to the Logitech Z625 we talked about in our best 2.1 channel speaker article, with the same gray and black finish and a design that's more functional than aesthetic.
The Z906 is made up of four satellite speakers, one center channel and one subwoofer. Expert Reviews found the build quality to be extraordinary claiming that they felt so premium that they would-be unscathed even after a drop.
In terms of connectivity, you have a lot of options from the more common 3.5mm to specialized ports like RCA, six-channel direct, digital coaxial and optical inputs. Sadly the Z906 lacks Bluetooth and HDMI inputs which is why we had to take a few points off it.
To control such a huge system you have two control options: one is a control console which lets you control the volume, inputs and stereo effect. This is useful if you use the system while paired to a computer and you have the control console next to you on a table. Logitech also provides you with a remote control for when you connect the Z906 to a Television and you need to sit away and control it.
The Logitech Z906 also comes with THX certification, which is designed to give you a theatre like an experience.
Expert Reviews tried the speaker system with a Blu-Ray of "Avatar" and were surprised by the beefiness of the sound from the speakers. They loved the details that were reproduced faithfully including the depth of the bangs and crashes and the delicacy with it reproduced the sound of leaves rustling. All this combined gives you a cinema surround experience that is not easily reproduced by most laptop and TV speakers.
Talking specifically about the low frequencies they found it to be excellent, giving you accurate and tight rumble without drowning out the sounds from the other speakers (overlapping other frequencies). These speakers are great with other frequencies as well, giving your crisp dialogue, rich vocals, and good high frequencies.
Logitech offers a 2-year warranty on the product and you need to take the product to their service center to get it repaired in case of any issues.
They are priced at around Rs. 17000 which may seem a little high but its really not, given the surround sound effect and the sheer quality of the sound it produces. Whether you want to listen to some tunes or lay back watching an action movie, the Logitech Z906 will surely give you all the rumble you need.
Best USB speakers for laptop (Budget) - In-depth
Clear and Loud audio
No bass & volume controller
Distortion at high volume
F&D V520 is a very basic and simple pair of speaker, so basic in fact that they have absolutely no controls on them and are just two pods that give you sound. But that's not necessarily a bad thing, especially when you consider their price of around Rs.800. They are powered via USB and take in audio through a 3.5mm jack.
With 4.3 stars and 463 reviews, the V520 was very well received with 82% of the verified customers loving the bass reproduction and 86% being satisfied with the sound quality.
The sound of the V520 manages good low end and treble doing justice to vocals and instruments. However being a budget speaker it has limitations, as the voice crackles at high volumes but the balanced wholesome sound still makes it a great buy.
As we said before there are no volume controls and there is no Bluetooth connectivity also.
F&D offers 1-year of warranty on the product and you have to take it to a service center in case of any issues.
The Logitech Z906 comes with a 2-year warranty and you need to take the product to their service center to get it repaired in case of any issues.
Harman Kardon offers 1-year service with the Soundsticks III and you need to take it to the service center for any issues.
F&D meanwhile offers 1-year of warranty on the product and you have to take it to a service center in case of any issues.
All these these brands have service centers in major cities of India.
Who are our best picks for?
The Logitech Z906 comes from a line of speakers by Logitech that are designed for your computer and television alike. Their THX certification means they give you a loud surround sound experience. They offer a lot of sound for what they are priced and are great for movies, music and gaming.
The Harman Kardon Soundsticks III is for people who don't just to listen to the audio but want to gasp at the beauty of the device that produces the sound. The audio quality is without doubt superb with a loud and clear sound having good quality bass. This makes it great for Movies and Music alike.
The Logitech Z265 offers a lot of connectivity and powerful bass and sub-bass which makes it ideal to be used with movies, music as well as for games.
The F&D V520 with its budget price is designed primarily for use with Laptops and Desktop, this is because of the fact that it draws power from the USB port. Also compared to the other picks this is going to be much softer so do not use this if you have a very large room.
When we talk about computer speakers we talk about a large category under which there are different types of speakers. You can have a high end 5.1 channel speaker with its multiple speaker arrangements or you can have something small like a 2.0 channel. Given the varied tastes and budget, we have four different picks for you.
For a speaker that gives you a cinematic experience with the surround effect at a great price the 5.1 channel Logitech Z906 is what you must pick if you want to treat your ears. Its dedicated subwoofer can produce rumbling bass while the speakers give your clear sound without distortion.
If you, however, are more artistic and will detest the drab grays and blacks of the Logitech products, you can pick the Harman Kardon Soundsticks III 2.1 channel speakers which looks more like a sculpture that resonates sound. These are not as value for money as the 5.1 channel, but good design is rarely cheap!
For nearly half the price of the Z906 and Soundsticks III, the Logitech Z265 sound excellent and offer you a great catalog of connectivity so you can connect it to any type of device.
But if you do not want to spend a lot and just need a pair of speakers that's better than what your laptop or desktop offers than the F&D V520 will suit your needs perfectly. It is a no-nonsense basic pair of speaker that sound good and cost less then Rs.1000.