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ELAC Debut 2.0 B5.2

Bookshelf speakers

3 Reviews | 2 questions - 6 answers

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Overview

Our take on the ELAC Debut 2.0 B5.2

ELAC has been one of our best-selling home speaker brands ever since we brought them on board a few years ago. And for good reason — the company builds great-sounding speakers starting at surprisingly affordable prices. The Debut 2.0 B5.2 bookshelf speakers are both easy on the wallet and a pleasure to listen to.

Budget-friendly audio gems

ELAC has been one of our best-selling home speaker brands ever since we brought them on board a few years ago. And for good reason — the company builds great-sounding speakers starting at surprisingly affordable prices. The Debut 2.0 B5.2 bookshelf speakers are both easy on the wallet and a pleasure to listen to.

These speakers are part of ELAC's newly redesigned Debut 2.0 speaker family. They're taller and more slender than the original B5s, featuring an improved 1" silk dome tweeter for extended high-frequency response, and an updated 5-1/4" aramid-fiber woofer that dishes out smooth mids and bass.

ELAC Debut 2.0 B5.2 bookshelf speakers

ELAC's B5.2 bookshelf speakers use high-quality parts that are designed in-house by Andrew Jones.

No off-the-shelf parts

Fans of ELAC know that renowned speaker designer Andrew Jones has been at the helm of the Debut series since the beginning. Jones himself designs the magnets, woofers, crossovers, and enclosures for each Debut speaker, which allows for high-quality components without the added cost of outsourcing parts and supplies.

Great for music and movies

These compact speakers are front-ported — another improvement over the original Debut B5 — making them easy to place in a cabinet or on a shelf. Use them as part of a stereo music system for smallish rooms, or team up a couple of pairs with a Debut center channel and subwoofer for a dynamic, not-crazy-expensive home theater system. 

Product Highlights:

  • 1" silk dome tweeter with wide-dispersion waveguide for smooth, accurate highs and extended high-frequency response
  • 5-1/4" aramid-fiber woofer with oversized magnet and vented pole piece for punchy bass and midrange
  • frequency response: 46-35,000 Hz
  • sensitivity: 86 dB
  • impedance: 6 ohms
  • recommended amplifier power: up to 120 watts
  • bass-reflex (ported) cabinet with front-firing port for flexible placement against a wall or bookshelf
    • thick MDF cabinet walls with black ash vinyl finish
    • cabinet walls are internally braced for reduced resonance and improved stability
  • custom multi-element crossover with high-grade components to ensure smooth transition between drivers
  • 5-way binding post speaker terminals
  • 7-1/8"W x 13-7/16"H x 10-1/16"D
  • weight: 13 lbs. (each)
  • warranty: 3 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • 2 Bookshelf loudspeakers
  • 2 Grilles
  • Operating Instructions
Reviews

ELAC Debut 2.0 B5.2 Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(3 Reviews)

Excellent musical experience

Jeff from Anchorage, AK on 11/4/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

These are a replacement for well known UK based speaker system, which were far too bright(!). Elac overall sound is quite nice, a little on the bright side but none of glare (glass like) sound. Imaging is very good with some 3d hints of location. Low frequencies are a little heavy used with subwoofer, so I used the foam plugs taken from Monitor Audios to resolve that (small) issue. This is used for bedroom/den system. Main system in living room use model above amplification, Marantz CD player and Focal Chorus 706. What I hear are Elac sounding very close to, but not matching the Focals as expected. Would buy these again.

Pros: Looks like all the hype about Andrews Jones designs are true.

Cons: Banana connection nuts are unusally large, manufacturer terminated Audioquest Type 4 and 8 speaker cable plugs will pop out of speaker from it's own hanging weight. This does not occur with the other speaker systems.

Another Andrew Jones Winner

James from Northbridge, MA on 9/20/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Probably the best yet of Andrew Jones' budget speakers. Has the characteristic full and smooth AJ sound, but doesn't suffer from the treble roll-off of his earlier efforts. I have it hooked up with a subwoofer so I can't comment on low bass, but the midrange is clean. Efficiency is not great, but with watts so cheap, who cares? Fit and finish is typical of this class of speaker but nothing special (although those with little kids will appreciate the metal grill over the tweeter). A finish option other than blah black would be nice.

Pros: Smooth sound not missing anything. Great speaker for the money.

Cons: A little tall for my taste, but that's the price of the front port.

Surprisingly big sound

Kenneth from Thiensville, WI on 7/6/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This new version of the Elac B5 speaker has some positive attributes including front-facing port for easier bookshelf and room placement. The initial impression was one of surprise because the speakers are much larger than I expected, and extremely well packed for shipment. The cabinet construction is good, the binding posts are nice, and the overall fit and finish appears to be of a more expensive speaker. Initial listening convinced me some burn-in time was needed as the speaker sounded unusually bright and a bit strident. After a few weeks, the speaker warmed up, and its main characteristics include excellent upper midrange detail, quick and responsive tweeter allowing for a surprisingly excellent transient response considering the price point, allowing for the inner dynamics of orchestral music to be well evident. Overall bass is ok, with some lower mid-bass coloration I could not resolve. Midrange was acceptable, if not a little too lean for my preference. Overall, a very good speaker, with above average transparency and micro-transient detail previously experienced only on some top tier speakers by B&W, Dynaudio and Epos. Midrange could use more warmth and presence, but overall not a bad price.

Pros: Clean revealing detail, Micro-transients and inner dynamics are there to hear, good build quality, well packaged, and expansive sound

Cons: Muddy bass, can be a bit strident at first, warms up over time, lacks presence in midrange

Details

Hands-on research

Features and Specs

Enclosure Bass Reflex
Video Shielded No
Tweeter Type Soft-dome
Tweeter Size (inches) 1
Midrange Size (inches) N/A
Woofer Size (inches) 5.25
Woofer Composition Woven Aramid-Fiber
Woofer Surround Rubber
Power Range ---
Sensitivity 86 dB
Impedance (Ohms) 6
Frequency Response 46-35k Hz
Connector Type 5-way post
Bi-amp Inputs No
Height (inches) 13-7/16
Width (inches) 7-1/8
Depth (inches) 10-1/16
Weight (pounds) 13
Mounting Bracket Included No
Recommended Stand Height (inches) 24-28
Parts Warranty 3 Years
Labor Warranty 3 Years

Product Research

Features

Two-Way Driver Design: The Elac Debut 2.0 series DB52 bookshelf loudspeaker features a two-way driver design with a 1" tweeter, one 5.25" woofer, and a 2,200Hz crossover. Both the tweeter and woofer have been custom designed by Andrew Jones to deliver an exceptional audio experience that can't be delivered with typical off-the-shelf parts

  • Cloth Dome Tweeter w/ Wave Guide: The 1" silk soft-dome tweeter features a wide-roll surround that improves power handling and a waveguide that improves directivity control by eliminating cabinet diffraction inherent in traditional box enclosures. The 1" silk soft-dome tweeter candle handle high frequencies up to 35,000 Hz.
  • Woven-Aramid Fiber Woofer: The bookshelf speaker features a single 5.25" woven aramid-fiber cone woofer with rubber surround, oversized magnet, and vented pole piece. The revised shape of the aramid cone offers even greater stiffness and damping; far superior to polypropylene or paper. The added strength allows more flexibility in design to achieve a smoother, extended low-frequency response.
  • Custom Crossover: A custom seven-element crossover (2,200Hz) with audio-grade components is implemented to ensure smooth transition between the tweeter and woofer.

Bass Reflex MDF Cabinet: The Elac Debut 2.0 series DB52 bookshelf loudspeaker uses a bass reflex cabinet with a front-firing flared port for greater efficiency and bigger bass response. Moving the bass port to the front of the cabinet means placement against walls or in bookshelves won't compromise performance. The cabinet is made of MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) to strengthen and stiffen the cabinet, helping minimize unwanted vibrations that can discolor music or movie content. The MDF outer walls of the cabinet are covered with a black ash wood-grain vinyl finish. A detachable cloth grille is included.

5-Way Binding Posts: The Elac Debut 2.0 series DB52 bookshelf loudspeaker is fitted with a set of 5-way binding-post terminals which will accept bare-wire (up to 10AWG), pin-connectors, spade-lugs, and banana plugs (single or dual).

Applications: The Elac Debut 2.0 series DB52 bookshelf loudspeaker can be used in a 2ch stereo application, or used as your front speakers and/or rear surround speakers in a multichannel home theater application.

  • 2Ch Stereo or Front Speaker Placement: For optimum stereo imaging, place the speakers so that an equilateral triangle is created between the speakers your main listening position. You can also angle ("toe in") the speakers towards the listening position to gain a more focused central image.
  • Rear Surround Placement: In a 5.1channel surround setup, avoid placing the speakers forward of your listening position. The speakers should be spread apart wider than the front speakers. In addition, try to elevate the speakers to the same height or slightly higher as the front speakers for the most enveloping soundfield.
Note: In either application, the speakers should be placed 1' to 2' away from boundaries such as wall and corners. Close proximity to a side or rear wall will enhance bass performance, but being too close may result in bass that is unnatural.

Mounting Options: The Elac Debut 2.0 series DB52 bookshelf loudspeaker can simply be placed on a flat surface; like a table-top, stand, or shelf. The bookshelf speaker does not include a bracket, key-hole slot, or threaded insert for wall-mounting. However, you can wall-mount the DB52 speaker using the PinPoint side-clamping bracket (sold separately - see Accessories Tab).

Elac Debut 2.0 Series: The Elac Debut 2.0 series family of loudspeakers consists of two floorstanding loudspeakers (DF52/DF62), two bookshelf loudspeakers (DB52/DB62), two center-channel loudspeakers (DC52/DC62), a Dolby Atmos enabled loudspeaker (DA42), and two powered subs (S10EQ/S12EQ).

Our Product Research Team

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Accessories
Q & A

Customer Q&A

Crutchfield asked  
Why did you buy this?

Good reviews from various sources. Researched and concluded, this have softer high frequencies (compared to British metal dome drivers), along with smaller base unit for better integration with sub-woofer. [ Jeffrey  Oct 25, 2018 ]
already had one pair. [ RYAN  Jul 31, 2018 ]
Front facing port is preferred for bookshelf placement in small office. [ Ken  Apr 24, 2018 ]
crutchfield advice [ william  Apr 09, 2018 ]
The sound quality at this price point is supposedly unmatched. I cannot wait to audition them in my home theater. [ David  Mar 27, 2018 ]

2 questions already asked

I would not think so. You may want to get some/put the rubber feet on the side that will be laying down on the cabinet. [ Matthew  Sep 10, 2018 ]
I can't see any reason why there would be problems. [ James  Sep 08, 2018 ]
I don't think it really matters. Some would likely argue it does. Test it yourself. If you detect a difference I'd be surprised. The front ports allows for burying these in a bookshelf. The important thing I think is to have them positioned at ear level. Enjoy. [ Donald  Sep 08, 2018 ]
Seems like the 4.2OW (On-Wall) speakers might work well for you. I had this same issue, but didn't have the wall-space to go with the 4.2OW's. Would be awesome if ELAC had a smaller speaker for rear surround use, tuned to balance well with the Debut 2.0's. The in-ceiling/on-wall speakers come close, but there's no substitute for the flexibility of small surround speakers on stands/mounts. I've been considering getting a pair of HEOS HS2 1's or 3's to use as rear surround, as they're wireless & the perfect size for surround speakers, but I've seen mixed reviews, including complaints about the sound cutting out periodically, which I would not tolerate in my otherwise amazing surround setup. Given the very reasonable price of a pair of Debut 5.2's, despite their large size, I elected to get a pair of them to use as rear surround speakers, at least for now. Listening to music through the B6.2's in front & the B5.2's in the rear is sincerely thrilling! [ Joshua  Jun 02, 2018 ]
I'd look at the Debut 2.0 OW4.2. It's meant to be mounted to the wall and has down firing ports. [ Matthew  Apr 19, 2018 ]
If there's a few feet between the rear wall and your sitting position, I'd get a pair of ELAC debut 2.0 OW (on-wall) 4.2 speakers, which mount right on the wall. If that doesn't work for your room (it doesn't with mine due to window position), I bought a pair of ELAC 5.2s & a set of wall mounts. It was a bit tricky finding mounts that can handle the weight of the ELACs and also tilt downward more than 10 degrees - most are designed for light-weight satellite speakers. I bought ceiling mounts (PSTNDC31) from Pyle Audio and am hoping they'll work (not installed yet). [ Joshua  Apr 19, 2018 ]
Articles

Looking for more? Check out the next model in this lineup.

ELAC Debut B6.2, pr

Enjoy deeper bass response from a larger woofer and enclosure

The ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 offers these features:

6-1/2" aramid-fiber woofer

frequency response: 44-35,000 Hz

sensitivity: 87 dB