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A great choice when you just want good, inexpensive wired speakers

The proliferation of smart speakers and compact, portable Bluetooth units has been brilliant for giving people numerous and better ways to consume digital music. But it’s also meant that buying a pair of speakers that physically plug into something, and that aren’t designed for Bluetooth, Wi-Fi or voice assistants, has become increasingly difficult.

Your options typically are to go very cheap, very expensive, or just find a Bluetooth speaker that also has a line-in. But none of these are great if you need a pair of good, inexpensive speakers to go on your shelf for music, movies or games.

However ideal speakers for these kind of scenarios do exist, such as Edifier’s R1280T. In a small bedroom or office, or on the desktop in front of you, I found this $129 set nicer to listen to than some wireless speakers at double the price.

Edifier's R1280T is a simple but very well performing set of active bookshelf speakers.

Edifier’s R1280T is a simple but very well performing set of active bookshelf speakers.

These speakers are powered, meaning they have an amplifier built in and can connect directly to a source like a TV, computer, phone or a pre-amped turntable. They comprise a 4-inch bass unit and a 13mm tweeter, giving crisp highs and great mids. Bass is quite good too at all but the highest volume levels, though obviously doesn’t compare to a dedicated sub.

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