It is very difficult to classify speakers to users. Sound is very personal and when choosing speakers people pay attention not only to the sound, but also to the design. On this page we put Types of speakers in four different classes and list the pros and cons.
Types of speakers: 1- Compact speakers
These speakers are also called bookshelf speakers. This is due to the size: they are easy to place somewhere and do not stand out like a large floorstanding speaker. It is sometimes thought that these types of speakers are less good than large speakers, but that is not entirely true. A small speaker does fit in a smaller space, because it moves less sound. Compact speakers sometimes have trouble with the low tones. In that case you can purchase a separate bass module: a subwoofer. These speakers are recommended for people who do not want to have bulky devices in sight and who want to place their speakers inconspicuously.
- Good for relatively small spaces
- Inconspicuous in the living room compared to standing speakers
- Less good sound in large spaces
- Sometimes difficulty with the bass tones, in which case a subwoofer is needed
- For people who want good sound, but do not want speakers to be striking in the interior.
Types of speakers: 2- Standing speakers
A floorstanding speaker is logically larger than a compact one and can therefore move sound more and over a greater distance. This speaker is therefore better for larger rooms. With standing speakers, the low tones are usually better than with smaller speakers. The disadvantage is that the speakers take up a lot of space and are difficult to put out of sight.
- Ideal for large spaces
- Almost always reproduces good bass notes
- Often have the best overall sound
- Large and eye-catching, difficult to place out of sight
- Relatively more expensive than the compact speakers
- For people who want a perfect sound and want to sacrifice part of their interior.
Types of speakers: 3- Surround speakers
You can create a three-dimensional sound with a set of surround speakers. A set consists of three, six, seven, eight or more speakers, one of which is the subwoofer. They each receive the sound from a separate channel. Such a system is described as 2.1, 5.1, 6.1, 7.1, etc. (which 1 stands for the subwoofer). The speakers are placed around the listening position. In a 5.1 set this means that you have a center speaker that you place on your audio system or under your TV. In addition, you have two speakers that you place on both sides and two that you place behind you.
You can purchase a surround set for a few hundred euros. Do realize that the speakers are not of quality to write home about. Don’t forget that a good surround set is the same price as a pair of normal speakers of the same quality. Every speaker is a normal speaker and (with a good system) it has the same price tag. In short: for a good 5.1 surround installation you have to pay about six times as much as for one speaker of the same quality. In the better installations, the loudspeaker system therefore consists of separate components; an amplifier / receiver and separate speakers, often with the bookshelf speakers in the back of the room and the floorstanding speakers in the front of the room.
- Three-dimensional sound
- Ideal for movies
- Relatively very expensive
- For people who want to enjoy good quality surround / movie sound in addition to good sound from the radio or a CD.
A subwoofer is a loudspeaker especially for low tones. You can actually only use it in combination with other speakers, because it can only reproduce a small spectrum of the sounds. Subwoofers can be purchased separately. If you purchase one separately from your other speakers, make sure it matches the other speakers. Buying a subwoofer of the same brand is sometimes advisable, but at least listen before you buy.
Use an active (connected to the mains) subwoofer and connect it with a RCA (cinch) connection from the amplifier. Do not choose the cheapest cable for this. A cheap cable can provide a low hum. It is important that this cable is shielded against external interference. A bad grounding on your mains voltage can also cause a hum.
Types of speakers: 4- Soundbar
The sound of a flat TV is often not really good and for this reason many people go for the better sound of a surround system or a stereo system. But, what if you don’t want to have the burden of a lot of cables and ugly and sometimes even large speakers and want the benefits of a good and beautiful sound? The soundbar was created for this purpose. A soundbar is a system that consists of one speaker that takes up minimal space, requires almost no cabling and is often beautiful. When you use this speaker you can easily get a better sound for TV programs, movies and games.
Sound bars are a particularly good match with flat screen TVs. It offers a much better sound than the small built-in speakers in the TV and the slim design often fits perfectly with the style of the flat screen TVs. Although a soundbar does not achieve the quality of a full surround system, its size and convenience make the soundbar ideal for smaller rooms.
There are sound bars that offer Virtual Surround. This means that the soundbar itself provides surround sound, without having to place speakers in the back of the room. Please note; It is Virtual surround, which means that the surround sound is simulated and will never be able to reproduce the reality of a real surround system.
Read more about the advantages and disadvantages of a soundbar .
So when purchasing speakers, take a good look at the space in which they will be placed. It is very important that the speakers really fit in here. In terms of design, but also in terms of sound. You can buy a complete surround speaker set of good quality, but you can also find one yourself. Keep the front speakers and rear speakers the same (at least of the same brand and possibly the same series).