I’ve been trying out portable Bluetooth speakers for quite some time now and have been largely disappointed. Portable Bluetooth speakers have their uses but almost always disappoint in terms of bass and volume. Plus, of course, for those spur-of-the-moment times when a little background music comes in handy, the battery seems to always be flat, and the recharging time is between 2-4 hours. Anyway, having never found a portable Bluetooth speaker I was really happy with, I decided instead to go for a set of powered speakers and ended up buying a pair of Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth speakers.
Edifier R1700BT Details
These active (built-in amplifier) Bluetooth speakers come in either a walnut or black finish with audio delivered via a 4″ bass and 3/4″ silk dome tweeter. Measuring 6″ x 10″ x 8.5″ (WxHxD) they are not large speakers by any means but they sure are heavy – which is a good thing.
The active speaker includes three controls on the side – treble, bass, and volume – with dual RCA input connections at the rear and includes a class D amplifier system with Digital Signal Processing (DSP). Plus, Bluetooth connectivity, of course. Accessories include remote control, RCA cable, and a very generous cable to connect the two speakers together.
I had no problem at all connecting the speakers to my Windows 10 PC via Bluetooth, the connection is simple and, once established, stable. I couldn’t wait to try the speakers out and put them through their paces. First up I tested the speakers with one of my favorite rock numbers followed by a country and western track and lastly with a ballad. I am by no means an audiophile but was blown away by the sound quality, especially considering all three tracks were in MP3 format which is not the best quality. Volume is also terrific – these little speakers can really blast out a tune and raising the volume to near maximum did not produce any distortion at all.
The 4″ bass speakers deliver a thumping base while the little tweeters produce crisp highs. I found the middle range just a little muddy here and there, but I believe that can be put down to the MP3 quality, or lack thereof. I have little doubt that connected to a CD player or record player, the audio would be even more impressive.
Pricing & Value For Money
Now for the strange part – I paid $129.00AU for the speakers but checking the price in the U.S. and it seems to be consistently around $180.00US. That’s very strange because, due to the exchange rate and cost of living differences, most goods here are quite a deal more expensive than in the U.S. At around $130.00 these speakers represent exceptional value for the money. Not so sure at $180.00, however.
Edifier is a China-based company producing a variety of audio gear since 1996, including a wide range of Bluetooth speakers. I suspect the China connection might put some people off but if you think about it, what doesn’t originate in China these days? It certainly played no part in my decision and I am extremely happy with both the build and audio quality. Highly recommended… at the right price.
Check out more info, including specs, on the official Edifier website: Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Speakers