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Audioengine A2+

Powered desktop stereo speaker system (Satin Black)

73 Reviews | 5 questions - 31 answers

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Overview

Our take on the Audioengine A2+

Audioengine's original A2 powered speakers have been putting big smiles on our customer's faces for years. Their rich, musical sound, impressive build quality, and attractive, desktop-friendly design have earned them many well-deserved accolades. Placed alongside your computer monitor, these little gems could breathe life into your favorite musical performances. So wouldn't it be a little crazy to change something that delivers such terrific sound and value? I mean, why mess with success, right?

Audioengine A2+ in Black Satin with optional DS1 stands

Audioengine A2+ in Black Satin pictured with the optional DS1 desktop speaker stands

Put a concert on your desktop

Audioengine's original A2 powered speakers have been putting big smiles on our customer's faces for years. Their rich, musical sound, impressive build quality, and attractive, desktop-friendly design have earned them many well-deserved accolades. Placed alongside your computer monitor, these little gems could breathe life into your favorite musical performances. So wouldn't it be a little crazy to change something that delivers such terrific sound and value? I mean, why mess with success, right?

Audioengine did. They took everything that people loved about the original A2 and added even more flexibility and performance. But as the folks from Audioengine themselves say — "Even if you're not an audio enthusiast, we guarantee you will still hear a difference!" We think you will, too.

A pocket full of upgrades

So exactly how did Audioengine make a great speaker even better? First and foremost they gave the A2+ a USB port for making a direct digital connection to your computer. That connection bypasses your computer's built-in sound card (a low-cost afterthought on most PCs) as well as the underwhelming headphone jack circuitry. In its place, the speaker's own high-quality, built-in DAC (digital-to-analog converter) processes your music files, giving you far greater fidelity and reducing the potential for noise and interference that can degrade sound quality. 

Audioengine also gave the A2+ variable audio output jacks. That makes it easy to add an optional powered subwoofer if you crave more bass, or even send audio wirelessly to another pair of powered speakers or a sub using Audioengine's optional W3 wireless adapter. Other thoughtful improvements include upgrades to the power supply, speaker connectors, and accessory cables to further improve sound quality. Audioengine even gave the A2+ threaded metal inserts for easier wall mounting with optional speaker brackets.


" Actually, they sounded really good. Really good. I would have never thought that 6" desktop speakers could sound this good, except for maybe those studio monitors that call themselves desktop speakers. But these are actually designed for use with your computer, hence Audioengine's tagline, "Join the computer audio [r]evolution." Okay, where do I sign? And at 15W RMS, these puppies can really crank. They were loud enough to fill my house with music and drown out the clang of pots and pans as I cooked breakfast, or, if you're so inclined, the noise of dorm- and roommates."

— From Spencer Holbert's review in The Absolute Sound, February, 2014

Read the full review


What hasn't changed? Fantastic Audioengine sound

Like their predecessors, the A2+ speakers sound simply amazing. While typical plastic computer speakers can sound lifeless and dull, these Audioengine speakers sparkle with musical energy. Their silk dome tweeters deliver smooth, open highs. Custom Kevlar woofers provide tight, punchy mids and bass. The drivers are powered by two very conservatively rated amplifiers built into the left speaker — a simple, secure connection between the left and right speakers using the included cable gets them hooked together. Plus, you still get minijack and RCA inputs for connecting your favorite portable music players and audio components. Audioengine wraps everything up in sturdy, low-resonance wood cabinets with a hand-polished finish that you'll be proud to display in your room. 

If you're using a pair of the A2+ speakers as part of a desktop system, we highly recommend placing them on Audioengine's DS1 speaker stands. They improve mid-bass clarity and help the stereo image snap into focus.

If your music lacks stage presence do yourself a favor and buy these pc speakers. The usb DAC is a nice bonus if you want to bypass your soundcard or onboard sound. Very clean, no distortion speakers with incredible highs and mids. Bass is sufficient unless rap is your genre.

William, Amsterdam, NY

What's in the Box:

  • Powered left speaker
  • Passive right speaker
  • AC power supply (w/ attached 6' DC cord)
  • 6' AC power cord
  • 6.5' Length of 16 gauge speaker wire
  • 5' USB (type-B) to USB (type-A) cable
  • 6' Stereo minijack cable
  • 2 Cloth drawstring speaker pouches
  • 2 Cloth drawstring accessory pouches
  • Setup guide
  • Audioengine product brochure

Product Highlights:

  • powered stereo speakers
  • USB input and built-in Burr-Brown DAC let you bypass your computer's sound card for better performance (works with Mac or PC, no software to install)
  • accepts music files up to 16-bit/48kHz
  • variable audio output for connecting a subwoofer or wirelessly sending audio to other speakers with the optional W3 wireless adapter
  • two 15-watt RMS amplifiers built into left speaker
  • frequency response: 65-22,000 Hz (±2 dB)
  • each speaker features:
    • one 3/4" silk dome tweeter
    • one 2-3/4" Kevlar mid/woofer
  • video-shielded to prevent interference in tube TVs and monitors
  • rear-panel volume control
  • gold-plated binding post speaker terminals (6-1/2' cable included to connect left and right speaker together)
  • USB input (USB type-A to USB type-B cable included)
  • minijack stereo input (mini-to-mini cable included)
  • stereo RCA audio input and output
  • AC power cord and outboard power supply
  • bottom-mount threaded inserts for optional wall brackets
  • 4-3/16"W x 6-1/4"H x 5-5/8"D (7"D with power cord)
  • warranty: 3 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
Reviews

Audioengine A2+ Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(73 Reviews)
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Details

Hands-on research

Product Research

Features

Two-Way Speaker System: Each of the Audioengine 2+ speakers has two drivers; a 3/4" silk dome tweeter & a 2.75" Kevlar woofer. The A2+ provides a real, natural sound; very near to the originally-recorded music. The A2+ has a frequency response of 65Hz to 22,000Hz (+/-2dB)

  • Silk Dome Tweeters: Audioengine uses audiophile-quality, ferro-fluid cooled silk dome tweeters with neodymium magnets. Silk tweeters hold up well under high power & the edge-driven design gives very smooth response.
  • Kevlar Woofers: The woofers are made of Kevlar woven glass aramid composite with rubber surrounds. Kevlar is very strong, which means that the woofer retains its shape when being driven at high levels.

Built-in Amplifier: The A2+ is powered by a 15-watt RMS x 2ch amplifier (SNR: >95dB, THD: <0.05%), built into the left speaker. The built-in power amplifier saves space & eliminates the need to connect Audioengine 2+ to a stereo receiver or external power amp. Simply plug the left speaker into an AC outlet & connect the included 6.5' speaker wire from the left speaker's binding-post terminal to right speaker's binding post terminals. All internal components of the 2+ are tuned together, providing a more efficient system requiring less power than passive speakers & amplifiers.

Note: With the amplifier built-in, the left speaker is heavier than the right (4 lbs vs. 3 lbs).

Bass Reflex MDF Cabinet: One of the reasons the Audioengine 2+ has such great bass response for a compact speaker is its slot-ported cabinet. Each cabinet features a front-firing slot-port that has been specifically tuned for accurate bass down to 65Hz. The result is incredible low end with minimal audible air turbulence, so you can use the Audioengine 2+ speakers with or without a separate subwoofer. The cabinets are built using 18mm MDF with internal bracing. Internal sound-damping material reduces unwanted reflections inside the cabinet. The cabinet edges are rounded to reduce high-frequency diffraction effects on the front baffles. The speakers are hand finished, then tuned and tested together to be sold in matching pairs.

Note: The speaker materials & construction are robust & extremely durable, so speaker grilles aren't needed.

USB (type-B) port + TI/Burr Brown DAC: The Audioengine 2+ is fitted with a USB (type-B) port and features a built-in TI/Burround Brown PCM2704C DAC. With its USB (type-B) port and built-in digital-to-analog converter (DAC), the Audioengine 2+ allows you to send high-quality digital audio directly from your Windows or Mac computer's USB port. The A2+ internal DAC handles up to 48kHz/16-bit music files.

Analog Audio Inputs: The A2+ has two stereo audio inputs on the rear-panel of left speaker. The A2+ is fitted with a 3.5mm stereo minijack input & a stereo RCA input. There is no input selector switch, so both inputs are live simultaneously; if different signals are presented to both inputs, they are mixed together & both are played through the speakers.

Variable Audio Output: The Audioengine 2+ includes a variable stereo preamp audio output so you can connect a powered subwoofer (such as the Audioengine S8; sold separately), other Audioengine powered speakers, or an Audioengine wireless adapter to daisy-chaining music to other systems around the house. This output is variable (adjustable) so the volume level can be controlled from the A2+ or remote control.

Optional Wireless Adapters: Audioengine offers wireless adapters (772W3, sold separately) that can be used with the A2+ powered speakers and its analog audio input or output. The W3 includes a Sender (transmitter) & Receiver; the system is designed to deliver an audio signal wirelessly between your source component & the A2+ powered speaker, or between the A2+ powered speaker and your powered subwoofer (sold separately).

Mounting Options:  Both speakers have a high-density foam isolation pad on the bottom for safe placement on your desk, stand, table, or shelf. The optional DS1 Desktop Stands (772DS1, sold separately), made of high-performance silicone rubber, angle the A2+ speakers upward at approximately 15° and add 1-3/4" the the height (for 8" total). Threaded brass inserts are found on the bottom each speaker cabinet to provide the ability to attach the speaker to free-standing floor stands or articulating wall-mount brackets (sold separately). Audioengine recommends placing the speakers at least 3" from the back wall for best audio performance.

Note: Both drivers (woofer & tweeter) are directly video shielded & allow you to place the speakers within a few inches of a video monitor. This shielding also offers protection for hard-drive digital music players.

External AC Power Supply: The Audioengine A2+ operates off of standard household current using the included AC power adapter and detachable power cord. The AC power adapter plugs into the left powered speaker and the included speaker wire is used to connect the right passive speaker. An auto-standby idle mode is also featured to conserve power when you're not playing music.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Accessories
Staff Reviews

Product reviews from the Crutchfield Labs

Desktop dynamos

Written by Dave Bar, Staff Writer - Creative, on 11/20/2013 11:04:00 AM

It's hard to know where to even start with these little beasts. It seems that no matter how I connected or placed them, it was impossible to make them sound bad. Seriously.

I began playing Ray Charles using the supplied mini-to-mini cable plugged into the headphone jack of my work laptop, and the speakers just killed. I then intentionally placed them at a distance I thought was way too far apart, and had them facing straight ahead without any toe-in. No matter. They still delivered a rock-solid center image with an impressive spread of instruments across a wide and deep soundstage.

Next I plugged them into the USB output of my MacBook Pro with the included cable and fired up Jimi Hendrix's Electric Ladyland. I was witnessing a 3D sonic firestorm unfolding on my living room coffee table. The album's full hard-panning, phase-shifting, multi-tracking splendor was laid bare right in front of me — or maybe I should say all around me. The experience was almost headphone-like.

The final proof that these Audioengines rock came when I sat my wife down in front of them and put on "A Day in the Life" from the Beatle's Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. Her response? "Wow, these sound amazing!" Now she's no audiophile snob (like me), but she definitely knows when something sounds right, and she hit this nail right on the head. They really do sound amazing.

A couple of things I observed from my listening experience:

  • Break in time: Even after listening to the speakers for 10-12 hours, their sound continued to improve with smoother, more detailed treble response and somewhat fuller, better defined bass.
  • Stands: I borrowed a pair of Audioengine DS1 desktop speaker stands and found that they really tightened up the bass and improved high-frequency dispersion.
  • Higher quality sources: The better the recording and the higher resolution the source, the better the speakers sounded. Yet they were still quite forgiving of lower-quality, compressed music sources like streaming Internet radio.
  • Placement: As noted before it's hard to go wrong with these speakers anywhere you plunk them down. However, playing with their placement and making a few micro adjustments really opened up their soundstage and imaging.
What are the Labs?
Q & A

Customer Q&A

Crutchfield asked  
Why did you buy this?

I chose these for the price and the internal DAC. I have had these speakers for several years and they are great for my office. They crank up loud for those afternoons when we need a musical pick me up and pair well with the 12" powered sub I have rounding out the lower end. [ NICHOLAS  Apr 27, 2017 ]
The good reviews from customers. I wanted small speakers with good sound and the reviews made me select this speakers over Bose. [ ENEYDA  Apr 03, 2017 ]
I have A2s on my work computer and they sound great. These are for a different computer. I have cheap speakers on the other computer. Unbearable! [ Charles  Apr 02, 2017 ]
There is nothing like it. They are so cool for what they are. [ WESLEY  Mar 03, 2017 ]
After copious reviews, I was comparing this to the Bose Companion 20 and this one came up on top. Thanks for your help, Artie! [ Cameron S.  Feb 01, 2017 ]
Looking for better desktop sound. Great reviews for Audioengine speakers + Crutchfield 60-day return policy. You guys are the best. [ D  Jan 25, 2017 ]
For my computer [ Louis  Jan 22, 2017 ]
Previous experience with Audioengine speakers. [ DAVID  Jan 18, 2017 ]
Decent price, good reviews, recommended by CJ as a better desktop choice than a more-expensive DAC+Amp+speaker combo I was looking at. [ Gregory  Oct 13, 2016 ]
Small footprint, integrated DAC, USB connection to bypass computer soundcard [ CURTIS  Sep 23, 2016 ]
great performance in a small speaker. The DAC feature leads to superior sound quality. [ Robert  Aug 26, 2016 ]
For use with Amazon Echo Dot [ William  Aug 20, 2016 ]
Good Reviews, various connections and features, price point [ John  Aug 06, 2016 ]
Best performance + value decision [ John  Jul 13, 2016 ]
Good reviews. Good price. Compact design. [ Paul  Jun 26, 2016 ]
One of the few systems my son couldn't blow out. [ robert  Mar 06, 2016 ]
I read they are good [ RICKY  Feb 29, 2016 ]
I chose these speakers because of the good reviews that I read. I also need speakers with a small foot print. [ Alan  Feb 27, 2016 ]
The review and sound quality. [ Titus D.  Feb 01, 2016 ]
I told Daisy about my new Sirius radio, and she advised me to purchase these powered speakers! I had previously tried three Sirius radios for car/home with a large docking station use and had no luck with these so I hope this arrangement works! Daisy's Bio: http://www.crutchfield.com/Support/Bio.aspx?bio=86 [ J  Jan 18, 2016 ]
Size, and price. [ Richard  Jan 09, 2016 ]
These speakers hit the sweet stop for quality price and portability for a college student. Plug and play with the turn-table and instant sound . [ Darrell  Jan 04, 2017 ]
They rated higher than Bose [ Robert  Nov 27, 2016 ]
Really good sound quality for the size [ EMIL C  Jul 25, 2016 ]
has great sound per reviews [ Anil  Jun 30, 2016 ]
Price [ Boyce  Jun 09, 2016 ]
Heard them at AXPONA Chicago. Needed speakers to match my MacBook. [ R  Apr 25, 2016 ]
Have been looking at Audioengine speakers for a few years. Decided the smaller A2 would fit my needs. [ V  Mar 17, 2016 ]
Good Reviews. Front port to place near wall. [ Roger  Feb 17, 2016 ]
Jenny confirmed they are the right choice for me. Love the fact you can get honest knowledgeable information on purchases. Thanks Jenny's Bio: http://www.crutchfield.com/Support/Bio.aspx?bio=112 [ JOHN  Feb 10, 2016 ]
Overall reviews, built in DAC, quality of sound, needed smaller footprint vs 2.1 (no sub) and Audioengine ecosystem for expanding this set up later if needed. [ Dan  Jan 27, 2016 ]

5 questions already asked

I run these to a mini computer that is plugged into and Samsung TV and they're perfect for this purpose [ Jared  Jun 30, 2016 ]
I have the Audioengine A2+ on all three of my Sony HDTV's. They sound better than the speakers that came with the TV. I used a 2 RCA audio cable going from the audio out of my TV to the input on the speakers. Make sure you go into your TV's Menu, go to settings, Audio settings, and select external speakers. [ DAVID M  Jun 27, 2016 ]
Should work great, mine is connected to my Mac Pro. Very happy with the sound. [ Arnold  Jun 26, 2016 ]
yes [ fred  Jun 26, 2016 ]
I don't know why it wouldn't work if your tv or tv box had the same kind of audio in port as most computers do, 1/8 inch. [ TAMIA  Jun 26, 2016 ]
The built-in digital-to-analog converter (DAC) uses a USB type B connection and would only be able to connect to your Windows or Mac computer's USB port for digital audio transfer. We carry a few DAC's that would work with an iPod/iPhone/iPad though and you can find those on our website here: http://www.crutchfield.com/g_372350/DACs-for-iPod-iPhone.html?tp=59490 [ Larry  Nov 13, 2015 ]  Staff
Correct. They have a built-in DA converter/designed around USB input. [ EEWdad  Jul 06, 2015 ]
Hi Ken. It's true. One device that has worked well is the Blue Fidelity Bluethtooth receiver-about $80-80- to power the speakers via phone and tablet. Hope this helps. Garry [ Charles  Jul 06, 2015 ]
Correct. No Bluetooth. [ JohnQ  Jul 05, 2015 ]
These speakers are not bluetooth ready. However you can connect any mp3 player, Ipad,Iphone etc by using a 3.5 mm patch cord. You simply connect the Device and the speakers using this cable. One end of the cable goes into the headphone jack of the ipad/pod,iphone and the other end goes into the speaker's back marked Input. That's it. Hope this helps answer your question. [ TRIPU  Jul 05, 2015 ]
Audioengine also markets a Blutooth receiver B1 [ DONNAJEAN  Jul 05, 2015 ]
Audioengine does have a Bluetooth Speaker B2 [ DONNAJEAN  Jul 05, 2015 ]
No, you would need a dangle, though I haven't tried it. [ robert  Jul 05, 2015 ]
Unfortunately, you cannot run headphones via the A2+ speakers. While there is a mini-jack input on the back, there is no headphone out on the units. This is too bad as the DAC included in the A2+ is pretty decent and is a big improvement over the one in my PC. It would make for a much better headphone experience too if you could jack into the A2+ speakers. [ Matthew  Jan 06, 2015 ]
No. The speakers sound very nice. But it is annoying that you cannot connect headphones to them and it is also a pain that the volume knob is in the back of the speakers. They sound and look great, but those are two downsides for me. [ Dean  Dec 03, 2014 ]
You know, I have never tried. I don't have headphones, and use the speakers on my internet radio. They work great. Sorry I could not answer your question. Bob [ ROBERT R  Dec 02, 2014 ]
There is no dedicated headphone jack. However there is an RCA output (two holes), I believe you can use an RCA to headphone (female) adapter to your headphone to it or use an headphone amp to connect to the RCA and then plug in your headphone. so there is a way to connect headphone to the left speaker, its not a straight connection though. Hope that helps. [ VIJAY  Dec 02, 2014 ]
There is no headphone output jack on these speakers, so I don't believe you can connect headphones. [ MICHAEL  Dec 01, 2014 ]
To be honest I cannot answer that since I set them up a while back and they are tightly enclosed my desk area so I can't really quickly check. I will say this -- they sound lovely and I do make a suggestion of adding their matching sub-woofer as this made a HUGE impact on the sound for low end. Good luck! [ FRANK  Nov 30, 2014 ]
No - there is not a std. headphone jack output [ Jim D  Nov 30, 2014 ]
No [ Titus D.  Nov 30, 2014 ]
No and yes! If you want to connect headphones, you will need to purchase the audioengine D1 DAC... Which has a headphone jack, the a2+ speakers have no headphone jack. Although they are powered speakers and have a built-in dac, they are compatible with the d1 dac! [ JASON  Nov 30, 2014 ]
No, not that I've tried. The only audio outputs are left and right RCA type jacks and the speaker wire connection between the left 'powered' speaker and the right speaker. [ GARY A  Nov 30, 2014 ]
Hi Don -- I also have the A5+ speakers and like them very much. Significantly bigger and better sound than the A2+ speakers (which I also own and greatly like), but no built-in DAC like the A2+. For use with a PC, the built-in DAC offers huge improvement in sound -- as Charles W mentioned, the included DAC is of very good quality; especially in this application. Both speakers provide nice treble clarity without sounding overly bright. Mids are also very good -- especially at this price point. Bass is somewhat lacking in the A2+ units, though I would not describe them as anemic. Really intended for more of a nearfield experience rather than filling a room -- though I have no doubt they'd do a decent job of that when paired with the S8 sub. I can definitely recommend both the A5+ and A2+ speakers from AudioEngine. [ Matthew  Jan 06, 2015 ]
First, let me praise the sound quality of these speakers, even without a subwoofer. They are first class. I also added a separate subwoofer that connects to the terminals of one of the Audioengine A2+ speakers. The USB connection is all you need for both. The combination is wonderful for a small set of speakers. I have them on a PC. I had considered Bose speakers, but an very glad to have gone with the Audioengine speakers. [ JohnQ  Nov 30, 2014 ]
You don't need additional equipment. The sub does connect to the speakers. For convenience and the price you can't beat the A2s, but if you can afford it, you should spend more on the A5s, or the Definitive Incline active speakers. The Inclines are very clear and clean and *very* good -- way better than the A2s, which sound kind of muffled, in my opinion. [ Thomas  Nov 29, 2014 ]
I have the A2+ speakers connected to a subwoofer in my office. No special equipment is needed other than an RC cable. For my setup, I am using the supplied USB cable from the speakers to my laptop. I had to supply the RCA cable to go from the speakers to the subwoofer. I selected these because of the built in DAC. Eventually, I may add a tape deck or record player or both to my setup. The speakers sound great with decent low end by themselves, but the 12" sub sure helps fill it in. They do get pretty loud and have driven an office dance party or three. These speakers are a good choice! [ NICHOLAS  Nov 29, 2014 ]
Incredible set of speakers,just connect them to the Audioengine S8 Subwoofer and you will not believe the sound that comes out of them. Simple hook up, all wiring included needed nothing extra. I have them connected to a Desktop Computer with the S8 Sub and it sounds like I have a Super High End System. [ DONNAJEAN  Nov 29, 2014 ]
Hi Don, My first recommendation is to buy them by themselves, warm them up for a couple of weeks before investing in a subwoofer. The DAC in these units punches above it's weight, in my unprofessional opinion. They are directly connected to my Lenovo Yoga laptop on small home office work desk. Mostly jazz and modern classical from online radio and Google play are my interests and I've been impressed with the range offered and clarity. Hope this helps. Garry. [ Charles  Nov 29, 2014 ]
These small speakers do sound excellent - even without a subwoofer; that said, they are designed as a 2.0 system (no subwoofer integration). [ EEWdad  Nov 29, 2014 ]
Hi Don, you can use either USB to utilize internal DAC, or use patch cable if you want to output from sound card. It has unfiltered output that can be used as subwoofer output in either case. If you have high end sound card it might be better than the internal DAC though. [ Chun Yin  Nov 29, 2014 ]
Articles

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

Audioengine A5 Plus (Black)

More power, bigger woofers, and a wireless remote

The Audioengine A5+ offers these features:

two 50-watt amplifiers for more room-filling power

5" Kevlar mid/woofers for deeper bass response

remote control for adjusting volume

the USB port on the A5+ is for powering and charging connected devices only (does not support audio)

;