Feeds
85%

Audioengine A5 amplified iPod speakers

Too good for MP3?

High performance access to file storage

Given the A5s are aimed at the digital music player owner, I tried them this way first. There's no doubt, these are serious, room-filling speakers. The sound's big and beefy without, and distortion free even when both the iPod and the A5s themselves - there's a volume control on the front of the left speaker - are turned up to max.

The A5s' strength is the bass which not only has all the thump you'd expect from a powerfully amplified set-up but also an isotropic quality so you feel they're pointed at you wherever you are in the room. There's also good detail there.

What the A5s lacked - at least at first - were the higher frequencies. Some recordings and music genres were worse than others, of course, but even so the sound lacks sparkle and clarity.

What we're seeing here is the limit of the medium, and the danger of stressing how handy your speaker products are for MP3 player usage. The A5s aren't deficient at the higher frequencies, as hooking them up to MacBook Pro and tweaking iTunes' EQ setting revealed. Playing CDs through the A5s showed just how clear they can be while still pumping out a solid, warm bass.

audioengine 5 ipod speakers

Listening environment and personal taste are important factors too, so it's a good that Audioengine offers new buyers a 30-day audition period. If you don't like the A5s, you can send them back for a refund - minus shipping costs, of course.

The price for this fine set of speakerage? Just $349 (£186/€275) a pair, so hardly a bank-breaking asking price, though overseas buyers may face significant delivery charges given the A5s' combined weight.

Verdict

Audioengine's A5 speakers look good and sound even better. Hook them up to a CD or DVD player and you're in for a real treat. The company's claim that MP3 and other lossy audio formats sound great too is entirely true, but only because of the volume. These technologies sell the A5s short - the speakers deserve much better sound sources. Frankly, they're too good for MP3s. ®

High performance access to file storage

85%

Audioengine A5 amplified iPod speakers

Stunning speakers that'll lift your digital music and sound even better with lossless formats...
Price: $349 per pair RRP

More from The Register

next story
Report: Apple seeking to raise iPhone 6 price by a HUNDRED BUCKS
'Well, that 5c experiment didn't go so well – let's try the other direction'
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Nvidia gamers hit trifecta with driver, optimizer, and mobile upgrades
Li'l Shield moves up to Android 4.4.2 KitKat, GameStream comes to notebooks
Gimme a high S5: Samsung Galaxy S5 puts substance over style
Biometrics and kid-friendly mode in back-to-basics blockbuster
AMD unveils Godzilla's graphics card – 'the world's fastest, period'
The Radeon R9 295X2: Water-cooled, 5,632 stream processors, 11.5TFLOPS
Sony battery recall as VAIO goes out with a bang, not a whimper
The perils of having Panasonic as a partner
NORKS' own smartmobe pegged as Chinese landfill Android
Fake kit in the hermit kingdom? That's just Kim Jong-un-believable!
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.