If you judge things by how much you get for the money, the Q Acoustics 2050s have got to be the biggest bargain of the year.
Your £370 (look around and you'll find them even cheaper) not only buys one of the largest budget floorstanders we've come across (101 x 27 x 32cm), but also excellent build and finish.
These speakers may be pitched at the sharp end of the market, but there's little physically to suggest pennies have been pinched. We particularly like the integral steel plinth and the neatly inset speaker connections – touches like these speak of obsessive attention to detail.
The 2050 is a two-way ported design with the twin 16.5cm drivers working in parallel through the midrange and bass, leaving a 25mm soft-dome tweeter to deal with the rest.
The result is very much in line with other Q Acoustics speakers we've reviewed, and that's good news.
More after the break
The 2050s are full bodied and smooth, making even the worst of recordings listenable, and the speakers easy to match with the ropiest of partnering kit.
Fed with good-quality electronics – we used budget amps from Rotel and Cambridge as well as our reference Naim/Bryston pairing – the results are pleasing.
Decently controlled bassAs you'd expect from speakers so big there's plenty of bass, but importantly, it's decently controlled provided the speakers are positioned well away from rear or side walls.
A disc such as Nitin Sawhney's Prophesy can easily turn into a mess with speakers that lack bass control, but not here. The 2050s combine authority, scale and volume with skill.
Most decently designed budget floorstanders tend to get these things right, it's when they're asked to deliver finesse and agility that things sometimes fall apart.
That's not the case here. While not as nimble or insightful as the best speakers at this money, these towers remain articulate enough to keep up with complex, fast-moving dance music such as Basement Jaxx's Remedy: that's pleasing for a speaker of this type.
Sure, a touch more bite wouldn't go amiss, but at this price the 2050s do well.