What Hi Fi Sound and Vision Wed, 18 May 2011, 12:47pm

Pro-Ject Speakerbox 5

Tested at £150
60100
3

Not bad, but these Pro-Jects don’t do enough to challenge the best

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For

  • Lovely looks and build
  • fast and fairly detailed
  • happy in tight spaces

Against

  • Dynamically challenged
  • tonally inconsistent

These speakers make a striking first impression. That red finish is lovely, and the black and white options are equally glossy. 

Despite being rather small, the Speakerbox 5s are reassuringly heavy and well-made.

To get the most out of them you need to place them close to a back wall, as further into a room they sound rather weedy.

Unfortunately, they don’t perform amazingly even when given some back support.

Must try harder
We had hoped for a design that outperforms its physical limits, but the more you listen, the more it feels like the Speakerbox 5s aren’t trying.

They struggle to convey dramatic dynamics, and there’s a clear character difference between treble and bass, with the former sounding too forward and the latter too soft.

So why three stars? On top of the looks, the Pro-Jects are pretty fast and detailed, and if you heard them in isolation you could be impressed. 

But the standard of the competition is just too high.

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