The Best Bookshelf Speakers under $1000 – Reviews


Our Top 3 Picks


KEF-Q300WH-Bookshelf-LoudspeakersWe love these top-rated units for the look and the performance. These white exteriors are simply impressive. With the exceptional frequency range, they make music, gaming or other entertainment scenarios that much more enjoyable, no matter how high your expectations are.

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Pioneer Elite SP-EBS73


This one you purchase when you want to experience best-sounding audio no matter where you stand in the room. These Pioneer speakers even boost audio upwards thanks to the Atmos component. Their unique design also adds some style to the room.

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This set of speakers’ look blew us away. The black varnished exterior looks suave so you can upgrade your room’s overall feel simply be adding sound components. The customized components inside also result in exceptional sound. For $1000 you want performance and aesthetics and that’s what you’ll get.

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Top Rated Budget Bookshelf Speakers Under $1000

KEF Q300WH Bookshelf Loudspeakers

KEF Q300WH Bookshelf Loudspeakers

What puts this KEF Q300WH in the $1000 range is the 6.5” Uni-Q driver array. You also benefit from the aluminum cone and a full 2” voice coil. That’s why you’ll experience very little distortion.

You can use them together or even solo and you’ll be impressed. The brand is practical even in the dimensions as the 14” high units fit perfectly on most bookshelves.

And here’s what you’ve been waiting for in the under $1000 range: A frequency response of 42Hz—40kHz. That’s worth the money.


Can you connect more than one pair of these?
Yes, it’s possible and very easy if you already have a surround-sound setup with a multichannel home theater amplifier. You can simply use the surround outputs. Your normal amplifier must have separate connections (A and B outs) so your audio will be in stereo.

Does the speaker need a power outlet of its own?
No. The speaker draws its power from the amplifier you connect it to.

Pioneer Elite SP-EBS73 Dolby Atmos-enabled Andrew Jones Bookshelf Speakers

Pioneer Elite SP-EBS73 Dolby Atmos-enabled Andrew Jones Bookshelf Speakers

Enjoy your music in every corner of the room with these Elite SP-EBS73 speakers from Pioneer. It’s possible thanks to the Atmos feature that also projects audio towards the roof of the room. And you can be sure all frequencies will sound perfect thanks to three embedded drivers:

  • A woofer
  • A mid-range driver
  • A tweeter

The speakers’ design makes them ideal to use either as front or rear speakers.

They also look stylish, so they’re an investment in every way and still cost under $1000. Just note that despite their small size (7” x 10” x 15”) they’re quite heavy when compared with some others.


Since Atmos features are some of the best drawing cards to this product, how do you optimize the features when installing the wiring?
Don’t use Monster cable terminals as there is a more affordable option. You can use 4 conductor hook up wires and banana plugs. You’ll use about 40 plugs in total as each speaker has four terminals to cover and a center channel will have two. The wires also need banana plugs at the point they run to (receiver binding posts). Tip during assembly for optimum conduction: Take off some insulation, fan out the copper wires and then tighten the connection.

ELAC Uni-Fi UB5 Slim Audiophile Speakers

ELAC Uni-fi UB5 Slim Bookshelf Speaker

One word describes this set: Sophistication. You see it in the crossover, the aluminum woofer and even the enclosure. The exterior is smooth and looks polished so it’s an asset in any living room or studio.

True to the $1000 speaker range you find custom-made components such as:

  • The binding posts
  • Concentric driver
  • This and the bass reflex monitor give you exceptional sound.

They’re still a reasonably compact size at 11.5” x 7” x 13.3”. Just note that Elac Uni-Fi UB5 speakers are heavier than many units mentioned in these reviews, weighing almost 36lb.


What power requirements do these have for the input from the amplifier or receiver?
These units require at least 100W each (per channel). If your amp can generate even more you’ll get even better sound.

Can these be part of a surround sound setup?
These perform better as front duty speakers. They’re too powerful to use as surround or side sound components.

SVS Ultra

SVS Ultra Bookshelf Speakers - Pair

They’re ultra black and ultra impressive making them some of the best bookshelf speakers under $1000. Your sound experience is optimized by:

  • A SoundMatch 2 way crossover
  • Ultrasonic drivers including a 1” tweeter and 6.5” woofer
  • FEA optimized diffuser
  • Thanks to this both lows and highs will sound amazing.

It’s surprising how small and light these good stereo speakers are when compared to other units on this list. You need space for only 8.5” x 10.9” x 15” which should be found on most bookshelves. At 19lb SVS Ultra are also relatively easy to mount safely.

All of these features you find in a smooth black enclosure that will suit any décor style you have.


Why are the crossovers and capacitors such huge selling points?
These components—along with the high tech circuit boards and inductors—are what gives you off-axis polar response, a sweet spot and stable audio. It’s great that one brand mixes all these features to optimize this outcome.

KEF Q350

KEF Q350 Bookshelf Speakers

Such a unique design on the woofers’ fronts that you can’t but be enthralled by this KEF product. And the sound coming from the 6.5” drivers will also amaze.

The audio is optimized by the Unit-Q driver Array. This incorporates a newly developed crossover to ensure treble is smooth and bass is more accurate.

The matte black surrounding the woofers’ fronts is complementary to any room you need sound in. You can also pick a white design if you want something edgier.

The frequency range isn’t the best (some cheaper models may beat this product) at 63Hz—28kHz, but you want the power these can deliver, so make sure your amplifier can deliver 120W.

To know more read full review of KEF Q350 Bookshelf Speakers.


Will it damage the speaker or implicate the audio when you place these on their sides?
If your layout requires them in landscape position these are one of the few sets you can turn on their sides without a worry. Their design provides that they’ll work in almost any position.

Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers

Audioengine HD6 Wireless Bookshelf Speakers

On the outside, you’ll fall in love with the classic wood finish. When it comes to technology you’ll appreciate the multiple inputs (analog and optical), the Bluetooth connectivity and the remote control so you can customize your listening experience.

They take up more space than some on this list (7.28” x 16.93” x 16.96”) but worth the sacrifice.


Can you turn off the Bluetooth?
Such a feature may be helpful in environments with many Bluetooth sources such as an apartment. However, it’s not possible unless you remove or switch off the antenna.

Great for Home Theater: Klipsch RP-160M

Klipsch RP-160M Bookshelf Speaker

If you’re upgrading your home theater it’s worth spending $1000 on these. The sound will be gripping thanks to:

  • 1” Titanium tweeter
  • 6.5” copper cone woofer
  • A 90×90 hybrid Tractrix horn

Because the brand has a range of different units you can add and connect woofers & speakers until the audio matches your requirements.


How far from walls should bookshelf speakers be placed?
There is no right or wrong since each room’s layout determines the overall effect of the speakers. If you need more bass, move them slightly closer but draw them away if you want to hear more mids and highs above the boom. The benefit is that you can customize your experience to exactly what you want, simply by positioning quality audiophile speakers correctly.

Bowers & Wilkins Speakers

B&W bookshelf-type speakers 686S2

What makes this one worth being on this list? The separation type dome tweeter that enhances your high frequencies. While the 5” woofer is smaller than those on some other high-end models, you’ll get great audio, especially when you place your speakers close to the wall.

Most people love the aesthetics. This mix of browns, black and gold makes for stylish equipment.


How does the flow port influence installation?
The flow port is thinner than in the brand’s other models. This and its position mean mounting the speaker won’t diminish sound quality.

Dali-Zensor 3 Stereo Speakers

DALI - ZENSOR 3 - Bookshelf Speakers

Here you get one of the largest woofers on this list at 7”. In addition, the 1” tweeter with the bass reflex design and port at the front allows for exceptional sound no matter where you place these. They can even handle up to 125W which is quite impressive.

And who won’t love the modern front design backed by beautiful wood finish?


How long before these speakers are broken in?
After about 100 hours you’ll get optimum results from them.

Can you use spades to connect these speakers?
Yes, you simply need to take off (unscrew) the plastic sheath found at the back.

What to Expect from the $1000 Bookshelf Speakers

It’s what you’ve been saving up for right? To get top-rated speakers under $1000 in this range will maximize your listening pleasure.

But before a salesman forces you to buy something not worth the money, let’s help you get perspective of what your expectations should be of high-end speakers.

If speakers—a pair—are marked with a $1000 price tag, these features should be noted somewhere:

  • These speakers must please you in aesthetics and technology so don’t settle for low-quality cases. They must be sturdy and showcase striking designs with immaculate finishes.
  • Sizes of items must be bigger than in low-end speakers. This is where you’ll see larger woofers.
  • Brands often show off their unique inventions in high -end units. If you’re impressed by a manufacturer’s unique crossover or upgraded components, you’ll probably have to purchase a $1000 speaker to own it.
  • These will beat all other speakers in terms of power. You’ll be able to fill larger rooms with clear sound, without distortion.
  • You should be able to find speakers that provide the connectivity suite you prefer. Where only a few of the cheaper units have features such as Bluetooth, these handy connection options will be more common if you’re willing to pay $1000.

Speakers in lower end price ranges won’t be able to provide all these features. You’ll maybe find one or two of them. But if you’re shelling out $1000, make sure the speakers will perform well in all the areas you require.