Q Acoustics 2020i
Best stereo speaker up to £200, Awards 2012. The original was good, but the ‘i’ modifications make it something of a starWrite your own review
- A sound which combines refinement with verve
- impressive insight
- good build
- Hidden speaker connections makes connecting thick cables awkward
It would be easy to underestimate the work gone into these revised speakers.
Q Acoustics has vastly underplayed the changes by adding just an ‘i’ to the name.
The upgrades amount to a new tweeter and a different cone material for the mid/bass driver – a carbon fibre and ceramic-coated paper rather than the paper/mica mix of before. There’s a revised crossover to accommodate as well, to tie things together.
The engineers have decoupled the tweeter from the front baffle to reduce any ill-effects caused by the vibration of the mid/bass driver.
Unfussy with positioning
Cosmetically, there’s a new baffle moulding. Our review sample is finished in gloss white, which adds £40 to the price we’ve quoted.
These are unfussy speakers. Despite a rear-firing port, they sound quite comfortable close to a rear wall. But if you can give them a little room to breathe you’ll get even better results. Use some solid stands too – Soundstyle’s Z2s as a bare minimum.
How do the 2020is sound? In short, excellent. They retain the friendly, refined nature of the originals, but add a serious dose of extra bite to the proceedings. Play Kanye West’s All Of The Lights and these speakers deliver it all with verve, composure and plenty of insight.
These standmounters aren’t fussy about musical genre either. They sound as happy delivering the large-scale majesty of Holst’s Jupiter as they do charging along to The White Stripes’ Seven Nation Army.
As far as updates go, then, this one is wholly successful despite that £20 price hike over the originals. Make no mistake, the chunky-looking 2020is are good enough to stand toe to toe with the very best at this price level.