Best speakers 2022: the best hi-fi speakers for every budget

Best Speakers Buying Guide: Welcome to What Hi-Fi?'s round-up of the best stereo speakers you can buy in 2022.

Whether you're looking for your first pair of speakers as you build a music system, upgrading an old pair of budget speakers or splashing the cash on a premium pair, we're here to help. 

One-box wireless speakers might take up less space and mean less clutter, but for the best possible audio performance there's still no substitute for a quality pair of stereo speakers. 

That's why we've created this comprehensive list of the best speakers. All of these pairs will help get the best possible sound quality from your source kit.

We've got all kinds of speakers in the mix: floorstanding, bookshelf, desktop, active and even all-in-one stereo speaker systems all vie for supremacy. Read on for our round-up of the best hi-fi speakers on the market right now.

How to choose the right speakers

Why you can trust What Hi-Fi? Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

First things first, decide on a budget. Your components should be evenly matched, both tonally and in terms of price, so consider this before breaking the bank on a new pair of speakers that the rest of your kit can't do justice. 

You also need to make sure your speakers fit your room. Most speakers require a degree of space to sound their best, so be sure not to buy speakers that are too big for your listening area. This is also a good time to consider whether you want bookshelf or floorstanding speakers. Bigger speakers mean higher volumes but, again, you need the space.

There's also the choice between passive and active speakers. Most speakers are passive - they have no amplification inside, so require a separate amplifier to work. Active speakers with amplification (and sometimes DAC and streaming smarts) are increasingly popular and can connect straight to your source, no amp required, though they do require a connection to mains power. Check out our pick of the best active speakers if you're curious.

For a more detailed explanation of everything you should consider, check out our complete guide to choosing the right speakers.

Best speakers - KEF LS50 Meta

Featuring innovative technology and exceptional sound, these KEFs are the best speakers for the money. (Image credit: KEF)
What Hi-Fi? Awards 2022 winner. These standmounters set new standards at the price

Specifications

Max power: 106dB
Sensitivity: 85dB
Frequency response: 79Hz - 28kHz
Impedance: 8 ohms
Dimensions: 30.2 x 20 x 27.8cm
Weight: 7.2kg

Reasons to buy

+
Exceptional sonic transparency
+
Subtle and precise presentation
+
Innovative technology

Reasons to avoid

-
Don't place them in a bookshelf or up against a wall

The original LS50 speakers had little wrong with them but after eight years, KEF figured they deserved a fresh look. And with the LS50 Meta they have delivered a worthy upgrade.

The LS50’s Uni-Q driver array, where the tweeter sits in the throat of the mid/bass unit, has been thoroughly reworked, taking in all the refinements that KEF has developed over the past eight years and adding something new in the form of Metamaterial Absorption Technology (MAT). MAT is KEF’s way of coping with the sound that comes off the back of the tweeter dome; a plastic circular maze of tubes on the back promising greater absorption for cleaner, less distorted highs.

While the basic sonic character is instantly familiar, the Meta speakers have gained a level of clarity and finesse the originals only hinted at, sounding clean while still offering muscle and dynamics.

We’ve loved the originals and the LS50 Meta takes the performance to a notably higher level. 

Read the full review: KEF LS50 Meta

Best Speakers – Wharfedale Diamond 12.3

Affordable, wonderfully refined and well made – these Wharfedales are terrific towers. (Image credit: Wharfedale)
What Hi-Fi? Awards 2022 winner. Award-winning floorstanders that are both entertaining and affordable.

Specifications

Speaker terminals: 2.5
Mid/bass driver: 13cm
Tweeter: 2.5cm
Sensitivity: 89dB/W/m
Dimensions: 98 x 18 x 32cm (H x W x D)

Reasons to buy

+
Superbly balanced presentation
+
Expressive and revealing midrange
+
Pleasing build and finish

Reasons to avoid

-
Perform best if given a little room to breathe

Wharfedale's Diamond range now features a truly outstanding (and affordable) floorstander. Indeed, we're so impressed by the Wharfedale Diamond 12.3's musical performance that it's now a two-time What Hi-Fi? Award winner.

At 98cm tall, the Diamond 12.3 aren't a particularly imposing pair of floorstanders, so they'll fit into most spaces. Sonically, they're smooth, even-handed and wonderfully refined for the money. Feed them a poor signal and they’ll round off rough edges and downplay unwanted aggression without sounding like they’re smothering the life out of the music. 

As for build quality, the cabinets are carefully crafted with a traditional straight-edge design and a tidy feet arrangement. The 12.3 are available in four finishes – black, walnut, white and a classy light oak – all of which belie their relatively modest price tag.

If you're looking for reasonably-priced floorstanders, the talented Wharfdale 12.3 are a superb buy and sound even better than the company's renowned 12.1 standmounters.

Read our full Wharfedale Diamond 12.3 review

Best speakers - Elac Debut B5.2

A talented and unfussy pair of budget speakers.
What Hi-Fi? Awards 2022 winner. Arguably the most capable standmounters we’ve heard at the money.

Specifications

Speaker terminals: Single
Mid/bass driver: 5.25cm
Tweeter: 25mm
Sensitivity: 86dB/W/m
Dimensions: 34 x 18 x 23cm (HxWxD)

Reasons to buy

+
Detailed and organised sound
+
Solid build
+
Unfussy nature

Reasons to avoid

-
Tough competition

If it's standmounted speakers you want, Elac's affordable B5.2s perform superbly for the money. They have the dynamic expression, detail and tonal sophistication to handle anything you can throw at them. Plus they sound wicked good whether they're hooked up to a standard or high-end system. 

They're not too precious when it comes to placement either. So unlike some speakers, you won't have to build your room around them.

Inside is a 5.25cm mid/bass unit which uses a new blend of aramid fibres for the cone. And it uses a different shape to improve stiffness and damping, reducing resonance. With a top-end response of 35kHz, the tweeter should do justice to those soaring highs.

In the midrange, they're a little lacking in warmth, but on the flip side, they're very well balanced and can make the best of any recording, regardless of audio quality.

Elac has been making speakers since the 1980s, with a fine heritage of products to its name. These are some of its finest, and for this money, they're nothing short of exceptional.

Read the full review: Elac Debut B5.2

Best speakers - B&W 606 Anniversary

Proof that small upgrades make a big impact, these B&W speakers sound even more precise and natural than before. (Image credit: Bowers & Wilkins)
What Hi-Fi? Awards 2022 winner. B&W hones its 606 speakers to great effect

Specifications

Type: 2-way bookshelf speakers
Impedance: 8 ohm
Sensitivity: 88dB
Frequency response: 52Hz to 28kHz
Dimensions (hwd): 35 x 19 x 30cm
Weight: 6.9kg

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent clarity
+
Agile and articulate bass
+
Impressive dynamic punch

Reasons to avoid

-
Minor upgrades over previous model

The original Bowers & Wilkins 606 speakers walked off with What Hi-Fi?’s top speaker award in 2019 but it seems there's always room for improvement. To mark the 25-year anniversary of the 600 range (in 2020), B&W decided to upgrade the 606 (and the rest of the range) – and it proved to be a wise move.

Cosmetically, there's not much new, but for an inscription on the tweeter surround and a new oak finish option. On the inside, there's an upgraded crossover that now features better-quality capacitors.

While retaining a broadly similar sonic character, the 606 S2 Anniversary Editions prove significantly more capable than their predecessors. The biggest differences are heard in the bass. The new version is so much more precise and controlled. There are improvements in clarity too, with voices offering extra subtlety, while the overall presentation is more natural and transparent.

Don't be fooled by the apparent minor upgrades, the B&W 606 S2 Anniversary Edition speakers deliver an impressive step up in performance.

Read the full review: B&W 606 S2 Anniversary Edition

Best speakers - Dali Spektor 2

One of the best entry-level speakers, delivering sophistication, nuance and passion.
An excellent pair of entry-level speakers.

Specifications

Impedance: 6 ohms
Sensitivity: 85dB/w/m
Speaker terminals: Single wire
Dimensions: 29 x 17 x 24cm (HxWcD)
Tweeter: 25mm soft dome
Woofer: 13cm wood fibre

Reasons to buy

+
Agile, articulate and expressive sound
+
Good detail resolution
+
Unfussy nature

Reasons to avoid

-
Low rated sensitivity, so needs care with amplifier pairing

On paper, there’s little to differentiate Dali’s new Spektor 2s from any of their main rivals: the speakers stick to the classic budget standmounter formula like Superglue sticks to fingers. They offer everything we would expect from a typical budget speaker here, from two-way driver configuration and ported bass tuning right the way through to the 25mm dome tweeter and 13cm mid/bass driver. 

But these Dalis are much more than simply the sum of their parts: they ooze sophistication and offer a degree of entertainment that even their most talented rivals struggle to match. Powerful vocals are delivered with nuance and passion, grabbing the listener's attention, and dynamics are handled with subtlety and class. They're particularly composed at high volume, too, which is always an encouraging sign. 

Mission and Q Acoustics offer similarly good options, and both have their relative strengths and flaws. But if the Spektor 2 match your budget, these affordable standmounters deserve an audition.

Read the full review: Dali Spektor 2

Best speakers - Q Acoustics M20

Well-connected, affordable and energetic desktop speakers that can double up as your main audio system. (Image credit: Q Acoustics)
Q Acoustics more than achieves its aims with this desktop system

Specifications

Finishes: 3 (black, walnut, white)
Cabinet type: Two-way reflex ported
Frequency response: 55Hz - 22kHz
Crossover frequency: 2.4kHz
Inputs: Bluetooth 5.0, USB, stereo RCA, 3.5mm
Power: 2 x 65W
Dimensions: 279 x 170 x 296mm
Weight: 5.1kg (passive speaker), 5.5kg (powered speaker)

Reasons to buy

+
Insightful and spacious sound
+
Unfussy on placement
+
Great connectivity

Reasons to avoid

-
Probably too big for a laptop system
-
No wireless network streaming

The Q Acoustics M20 are a pair of powered speakers designed to work wherever you feel like putting them. They also have a lot of useful connections on the back – TVs, CD players, turntables and laptops can also be wired to the M20 through optical, RCA line-level, aux and USB Type B connections. And there's wireless Bluetooth streaming, too. One speaker in the pair is the mains-powered 'master' and feeds the other through a supplied piece of speaker cable.

Versatile, simple to use and nicely put together, crucially, they also sound the part. The M20 speakers sound full, loud, spacious and energetic. For relatively affordable speakers that pack in quite so much, we're impressed how refined and detailed they manage to sound.

Q Acoustics has released an unfussy, just-add-source set of powered speakers that we find impossible to dislike. With all of the amplification squirrelled away in the master speaker and the plethora of connectivity and placement options covered, the M20 is far more likely to become your entire music system than it is simply your new desktop speakers – and for this money, you’ll be hard pushed to better the sound quality with hi-fi separates. 

Read the full Q Acoustics M20 review

Best speakers: Elac Debut 2.0 B6.2

An affordable speaker with a mature and transparent presentation. (Image credit: Future)
A mature and understated pair of stereo speakers.

Specifications

Speaker terminals: Single
Mid/bass driver: 16.5cm
Tweeter: 2.5cm
Sensitivity: 87dB/W/m
Dimensions: 37.4 x 19.5 x 26.8cm (HWD)

Reasons to buy

+
Hugely transparent
+
Don’t force their own character
+
Rhythmic and dynamic

Reasons to avoid

-
Unforgiving of poor sources

These speakers' smaller siblings (B5.2, above) are a current What Hi-Fi? Award winner. As you can imagine, we were pumped to hear what their bigger brothers could do. And we're glad to say we weren't disappointed.

So what's the difference between the two models? These have a larger driver, as well as some changes to the tweeter design and port placement. The cabinet has more bracing for increased rigidity, aiming to reduce resonance, making for less distortion. While they might look similar to their smaller siblings, they do feel more solidly put together.

Sonically speaking, they're mature, transparent performers that tell you exactly what the rest of your system is doing. It's hi-fi mentality at a price that only just nudges into the midrange.

Suffice to say, we’re big fans of this new Debut series. The B6.2 speakers take what we loved about their Award-winning siblings and build on it with an even fuller-bodied and more mature presentation. Elac has hit it out of the park.

Read the full review: Elac Debut 2.0 B6.2

Best speakers – Wharfedale Diamond 12.1

Easy-going but authoritative and dynamic performance from these compact speakers. (Image credit: Wharfedale)
Surprisingly sophisticated standmounters for their size.

Specifications

Type: 2-way, bass reflex
Max power: 100W
Mid/bass driver: 130mm
Tweeter: 25mm
Sensitivity: 88dB
Frequency response: 65Hz to 20kHz
Dimensions (hwd): 31 x 18 x 28cm

Reasons to buy

+
Detailed but easy-going nature
+
Seamless and fluid midrange
+
Pleasing build and finish

Reasons to avoid

-
Tough competition from new rivals

Wharfedale started with a clean sheet here, and it shows. Pretty much everything is new, from the drive units to the cabinet construction. The result is a pair of compact, 31cm-tall boxes that have the ability to make the most of price-compatible hi-fi components.

Sound is organised, cohesive and musical. They deliver a good soundstage that, for the price, is expansive and stays stable even when recordings become layered and demanding. We like the reassuring way the Diamonds handle larger-scale dynamics too, delivering more authority and scale than one might expect for speakers of a modest size and price.

This is a tough area of the market, however, and Wharfedale's superb standmounters find themselves besieged by talented rivals (such as brilliant Elac Debut B5.2, above). Still, impressive Diamond 12.1 deserve a place high on anyone's shortlist.

Read the full Wharfdale Diamond 12.1 review

Best speakers - Dali Oberon 5

These Dali speakers are a real treat – musical, rhythmically precise and wonderfully detailed. (Image credit: Dali)
Superb Award-winning floorstanders, right up there with the best.

Specifications

Sensitivity: 88 dB/w/wm
Impedance: 6 ohms
Biwire: No
Max power handling: 150W
Dimensions: 83 x 16 x 28cm (HxWxD)

Reasons to buy

+
Entertaining and informative
+
Expressive dynamics
+
Unfussy nature

Reasons to avoid

-
Tough competition at this price
-
Rival Q Acoustics will suit bigger rooms

For much of the last decade, our go-to "affordable" floorstander was a Q Acoustics model, which in the company’s current range, is the 3050i speakers. But not anymore.

Because the Dali Oberon 5 blows it out of the water. What makes these speakers all the more impressive is that they're still the better buy, despite being a little pricier and noticeably smaller.

How has Dali done it? Not with any trickery or hi-fi voodoo. It's not even come up with any notable technological breakthroughs to change the game. Instead, it's focused on what it does best: skilful engineering, with granular refinements in each new instalment over the course of many years.

The result is breathtaking. They sound a lot bigger than their 83cm height would suggest, and they showcase lots of dynamic subtlety and rhythmic precision. They're musical, fun, and small enough to fit most rooms with ease. If your space is on the larger side you might want to consider bigger speakers, but for most living areas the Dalis will do the job.

Read the full review: Dali Oberon 5

Best speakers - Bowers & Wilkins 805 D4

These are gorgeous high-end speakers that will impress on every level – one of B&W's best. (Image credit: Future)
The finest standmounters Bowers & Wilkins currently makes

Specifications

Type: Two-way design
Sensitivity: 88 dB/w/m
Impedance: 8 ohms
Mid/bass driver: 16.5cm Continuum
Tweeter: 2.5cm diamond dome
Dimensions: 44 x 24 x 37cm

Reasons to buy

+
Class-leading clarity and resolution
+
Open, agile and articulate
+
Excellent build and finish

Reasons to avoid

-
Up against some tough competition
-
Don’t shine at low volume levels

The Bower & Wilkins 805 D4 are easy speakers to recommend. They’re beautifully made and packed with technology. We get the impression that the engineering team behind their design really delved into the details to eke out every ounce of performance they could. 

The result is arguably the most insightful and detailed sounding pair of speakers at this level. They deliver a sound that's balanced, wide open and packed to bursting with detail. Outright clarity is class-leading and vocals sound focused and refined. 

We wouldn’t be doing our job if we didn’t mention that there are a number of excellent alternatives – KEF Reference 1ProAc K1Fyne Audio F1-8 – all of which are larger and able to dig deeper with more authority, but these remain extremely accomplished speakers.

If you’re lucky enough to be buying at this level, make sure the 805 D4 are on your shortlist.

Read our Bowers & Wilkins 805 D4 review

Best speakers - Mission 770

Mission’s resurrected 770 speakers offer an excellent alternative to the established class leaders. (Image credit: Future)
What Hi-Fi? Awards 2022 winner. Taking inspiration from the old ways can give great results.

Specifications

Speaker terminals: Single
Tweeter: 28mm soft dome
Mid/bass: 20cm mineral-loaded polypropylene cone
Nominal impedance: 8 ohms (minimum 6 ohms)
Sensitivity: 88dB/W/m
Dimensions (hwd): 59 x 30 x 30cm

Reasons to buy

+
Articulate and insightful performance
+
Impressive bass clarity
+
Dedicated stands included in price

Reasons to avoid

-
Big and wide by current standards

We think these new Mission 770 are right up there with the very best at this price. Mission takes design inspiration from the original 770 speakers launched in the 1970s, but has improved and modernised every other element: from the cabinet design to the drivers and even new dedicated stands.

While the retro link will be the main attraction for some, for us that’s put in the shade by the speakers' excellent all-round performance. The 770 have a range of sonic talents that sets them apart from most rivals and earns them a warm recommendation.

They have so much finesse when it comes to delivering extended bass. They sound taut and agile, but also delicate in the way they paint bass textures and resolve low-level information. There's plenty of punch and power, too. The speakers have a slightly forward balance, especially with the clear and expressive midrange, that sounds lively and engaging – but thankfully never too aggressive.

Songs are delivered with wide-ranging dynamics, impressive authority and scale. It’s a musically cohesive presentation that’s controlled and nicely organised. If you have the budget - and space - for these speakers, they're worth an audition.

Read the full review: Mission 770

Best speakers - Wharfedale Evo 4.4

A natural-sounding speaker that aims high and is still relatively affordable. (Image credit: Wharfedale)
What Hi-Fi? Awards 2022 winner. Wharfedale shows it can mix with the best premium speakers.

Specifications

Sensitivity: 90 dB/w/m
Driver: 3-way bass reflex, AMT tweeter, Kevlar bass drivers
Impedance: 4 ohms
Max power handling: 200W
Speaker terminals: Single
Dimensions: 105.9 x 25.7 x 35.6cm (hwd)

Reasons to buy

+
Natural, easy-going presentation
+
Excitement and rhythmic drive
+
Fine build and finish

Reasons to avoid

-
Need a large room to shine

The biggest, most premium models in Wharfedale's Evo range are packed with a lot of tech. So much so, we did a double take on the price.

It's impressive stuff, too. The Air Motion Transformer tweeter is normally reserved for more expensive speakers, while the dome midrange and twin Kevlar bass drivers set these floorstanders apart from the crowd.

They're big, so it's hardly surprising that they produce a loud sound with plenty of authority. But they're not all about the grunt. There's also plenty of transparency and subtlety on show, aided by their natural, easy-going presentation.

Three finishes – black, white and walnut – mean they'll fit into most interiors, while their build quality impresses, especially for the price. Inside, there's no shortage of bracing and damping to minimise resonance.

Rivals like the excellent Fyne Audio F501 might sound a little more exciting, but over a longer listen the Evo 4.4’s easier-going presentation is more natural and convincing. A superb pair of premium floorstanders that get better with every listen. 

Read the full review: Wharfedale Evo 4.4

Best speakers 2022 - Q Acoustics 3030i

An excellent, rewarding entry to the budget speaker market. (Image credit: Q Acoustics)
Excellent all-rounders that don't cost the earth.

Specifications

Bi-wire: No
Driver: 16.5cm mid/bass, 22mm tweeter
Sensitivity: 88dB/w/m
Impedance: 6 ohms
Dimensions: 32.5 x 20 x 33cm

Reasons to buy

+
Insightful and expressive
+
Impressive, well-integrated bass
+
Fine build

Reasons to avoid

-
Tough competition from newer speakers
-
Rivals offer a more exciting presentation

The largest of the three standmounters in the 3000i range, the Q Acoustics 3030is produce a sound that's familiar to anyone who's dabbled with Q Acoustics speakers before. Though you might not be expecting this level of muscle on show.

This strength translates into an impressive weight at the low-end, but it never threatens to dominate proceedings. Instead, the bass remains well-integrated, like it's kept on a tight leash.

Power aside, they boast an impressive level of cohesion, with an even tonal balance and easy-going nature. Much like other speakers in Q Acoustics' 3000 range. And impressively, the dynamics stay composed even when working hard at high volumes. 

In all, they're detailed, rhythmic and ultimately very rewarding. A great option for anyone wanting more from their sound system.

Read the full review: Q Acoustics 3030i

Best speakers - KEF R3

KEF's R3 speakers are superb in sound and build quality – they're all-rounders at this price.
These superb standmounters set the standard at this price.

Specifications

Sensitivity: 87dB/w/m
Impedance: 8 ohms
Max power handling: 180W
Biwire: Yes
Dimensions: 42 x 20 x 34cm (HXWXD)

Reasons to buy

+
Exceptional insight and resolution
+
Balanced and entertaining sound
+
Excellent build and finish

Reasons to avoid

-
Nothing much at this price

Part of the company’s premium R series, the R3s offer a large chunk of the pricier Reference 1’s engineering content and sonic performance at a fraction of the cost.

It's a winning combination. The R3s are brilliant all-rounders and arguably the most complete standmounters available at this price. 

That's partly down to KEF’s Uni-Q driver array, which sits at the heart of the speakers. It might look like a single drive unit, but it's actually a two-way arrangement with the tweeter set into the midrange driver, to improve dispersion and integration.

Combined with the high degree of detail and insight these speakers provide – not to mention their even-handed delivery with excellent balance – it makes for a great audio experience.

Build quality is second to none, and they work with a wide range of systems, from budget to blow-the-budget. Hook them up to a premium feed though, and they'll pump out a sound to worry much pricier rivals. One to buy with confidence.

Read the full review: KEF R3

Best speakers - Wharfedale Elysian 4

If you've got the room and budget, these are premium speakers that look great, dig deep and go loud. (Image credit: Wharfedale)
Proof that Wharfedale can design great high-end speakers too.

Specifications

Tweeter: 27 x 90mm
Mid/bass driver: 15cm; 22cm
Impedance: 8 ohm compatible
Sensitivity: 92dB/w/m
Dimensions: 119 x 40 x 43cm (HxWxD)

Reasons to buy

+
Huge sonic scale
+
Impressive bass reach and agility
+
Excellent build and finish

Reasons to avoid

-
Floor spikes can’t be adjusted
-
Need a larger room to shine

Wharfedale may have won plaudits for its Diamond range of speakers, but it has plenty to offer at the higher-end, too. Like the Elysian 4.

These speakers are big, and unusually broad by current standards. But they're beautiful to behold, with a wonderfully deep and luxurious gloss that's unmatched at this price. The enclosure sits on widely spaced floor spikes, giving the Elysian 4 a solid and stable stance on a level surface, though oddly they can’t be adjusted and locked into position – something to note if you have uneven hard floors.

These floorstanders deliver a combination of scale, authority and dynamic punch that most (invariably smaller) price rivals can’t match. Large-scale crescendos are dispatched with confidence, the Elysians punching out sound with real venom. They can play at high volume levels without stress too, but also have the less common attribute of still sounding interesting at whisper levels. This is something to take note of if you listen late at night and don’t want to disturb the neighbours.

So if you're starting a party, or just want to enjoy your vinyl on the quiet, the Elysian 4 are a great option for those with slightly deeper pockets.

Read the full Wharfedale Elysian 4 review

Best speakers - Wilson Benesch Precision P2.0

Expensive but exceptional speakers that pack in class-leading engineering and sound quality. (Image credit: Wilson Benesch)
These floorstanders set the bar at this level

Specifications

Type: 2.5-way floorstander
Sensitivity: 89dB
Impedance: 6 ohms
Mid/bass driver: 2 x 17cm
Tweeter: 1 x 25mm
Dimensions: 110.5 x 27 x 47cm

Reasons to buy

+
Exceptional detail resolution
+
Impressive engineering
+
Excellent build

Reasons to avoid

-
Need a larger room to shine
-
Rather pricey

Wilson Benesch has never followed the herd. Its first products – a turntable and tonearm – were made using carbon fibre, something considered exceptionally high-tech back then in 1989.

The Wilson Benesch Precision P2.0 can trace their lineage right back to the company's first speakers, the A.C.T. One, using the same hybrid construction principles but instead of carbon it's aluminium and wood. Drive units are designed in-house and feature elaborate faceplates cleverly-shaped to reduce distortion.

Of course, these are very expensive speakers (£9495, $14,000, AU$18,990), so you need serious amplification to even contemplate them, but if your system allows for them, they really are top of their class. In terms of clarity and transparency, they're unrivalled, while there's also a level of authority and dynamic punch that smaller speakers just can't match.

Read the full review: Wilson Benesch Precision P2.0

How we test speakers

Here at What Hi-Fi? we review hundreds of products every year, including plenty of speakers of all shapes, sizes and types. So how do we come to our review verdicts? And why can you trust them?

The What Hi-Fi? team has more than 100 years experience of reviewing, testing and writing about consumer electronics. We have state-of-the-art testing facilities in London, Reading and Bath, where our team of expert reviewers do all our in-house testing. This gives us complete control over the testing process, ensuring consistency. We always ensure we spend plenty of time with the speakers, trying them with different electronics, in different positions and with different music. 

All products are tested in comparison with rival products in the same category, and all review verdicts are agreed upon by the team as a whole rather than a single reviewer, helping to ensure consistency and avoid individual subjectivity.

From all of our reviews, we choose the top products to feature in our Best Buys, such as this one. That's why if you take the plunge and buy one of the products recommended below, or on any of our other Best Buy pages, you can be confident you're getting a What Hi-Fi?-approved product.

You can read more about how we test and review products on What Hi-Fi? here.

MORE:

How to choose the right speakers

How to buy second-hand and vintage speakers

10 of the best songs to test your speakers

Joe Cox
Content Director

Joe is Content Director for Specialist Tech at Future and was previously the Global Editor-in-Chief of What Hi-Fi?. He has worked on What Hi-Fi? across print and online for more than 15 years, writing news, reviews and features. He has covered product launch events across the world, from Apple to Technics, Sony and Samsung, reported from CES, the Bristol Show and Munich High End for many years, and provided comment for sites such as the BBC and the Guardian. In his spare time he enjoys playing records and cycling (not at the same time).

With contributions from
  • F8lee
    What? No Magnepans on the list at all??
    Reply
  • psalvet
    What? No Focals on the list at all? The list does not have credibility.
    Reply
  • Sliced Bread
    Or ATC / PMC, but to be fair the list cannot go on for ever :)
    Anyway PMC seem to have priced themselves out. The GB1i was released at £1500 back in 2008 and was their entry level floor stander. The equivalent now is the Twenty5 23i of e £3850. I’m sure they’re better, but as a small entry level speaker is it £2350 better? The reviews indicate not.
    Reply
  • Sliced Bread said:
    Or ATC / PMC, but to be fair the list cannot go on for ever :)
    Anyway PMC seem to have priced themselves out. The GB1i was released at £1500 back in 2008 and was their entry level floor stander. The equivalent now is the Twenty5 23i of e £3850. I’m sure they’re better, but as a small entry level speaker is it £2350 better? The reviews indicate not.
    Couldn't agree more. British made speakers are becoming damned expensive.
    Reply
  • Jpanic4
    I noticed that the Triangle Br03 is not on the list anymore. Would you not consider them for this list anymore?
    Reply
  • mehtoa
    F8lee said:
    What? No Magnepans on the list at all of speakers??
    You are right.
    Reply