Top 10 Best Laptop USB Speakers 2017
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Top 10 Best Laptop USB Speakers 2017

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Laptops are smaller and more portable than ever.

This is convenient when you are on the move, but this inhibits their use as an entertainment center when you are using it at home.

If you think your screen is too small, wait until you try to bump some music.

The problem is that onboard laptop speakers are simply too small to put out the volume or frequency response that you need to actually enjoy music and movies.

A set of high quality PC speakers is a handy fix, but a more portable USB-powered equivalent is even better for use with an on the go device.

Portable USB speakers can slip into a bag easily, and don’t require batteries or AC power. They offer solid stereo sound for an incredibly low price.

If you need a pair of laptop speakers that can go everywhere your computer can, then a USB pair is just right for you.

We’ve made finding the right pair easy by rounding up our ten favorite pairs with consideration to sound, portability, and price.

Read on below to browse our picks.


1. GOgroove SonaVERSE O2

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The GOgroove SonaVERSE 02 offers everything you need from a pair of laptop speakers. They have a clear sound, plug and play functionality, and a low price.

These speakers are fairly tall at 4.4 x 2.7 x 5.8 inches, putting them on the larger end of the size spectrum. They are made with sturdy plastic that resists fingerprints.

The right speaker has a USB cable to draw power from your computer, and a 3.5mm cable to connect for audio playback.

Both are five feet in length. The back of this speaker also hides a volume control and a switch to toggle some blue LEDS.

As for the SonaVERSE’s sound, it is characterized by a clear and present midrange with sharp highs.

Low end frequencies are hard to recreate with small speakers, but these speakers use their slightly larger casings to house two passive bass ports that round the sound out nicely.

The bass ports don’t have powered drivers (hence passive), but their membranes do catch some of that low rumble that other speakers won’t.

Unfortunately, the bass ports have no grills, meaning that you can easily damage them and ruin the sound if you are not careful.

The speaker has a high max volume, but it will distort if you bring it too close to the max.

The SonaVERSE speakers aren’t the most portable pair, but for the solid sound they offer, you’ll end up taking them everywhere anyway.

Price: $24.99

Buy the GOgroove SonaVERSE O2 here.


Pros:

  • Well balanced sound
  • Passive bass port provides low end
  • LEDs can be toggled on/off

Cons:

  • Bulky form factor
  • Distorts at max volume
  • Bass ports have no grill

Find more GOgroove SonaVERSE O2 information and reviews here.



2. Elegiant USB Sound Bar

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The Elegiant USB Sound Bar brings the convenient soundbar form factor into the world of portable audio.

This single speaker is low profile at 2.4 x 15.7 x 2.2 inches, and is meant to sit under your computer screen. But its unique form factor is ultimately hit or miss.

For instance, having to only carry around one speaker instead of a pair can be really handy. However, this speaker won’t fit under every laptop’s screen, meaning you might need someplace else to put it.

Whether or not its shape meets your needs, it offers a surprising amount of stereo separation and from such a small speaker bar.

The main feature of the sound, though, is its clear high mids, which really drive the sound. The highest and lowest frequencies feel slightly rounded off, but the sound is mostly balanced.

The low end doesn’t have a lot of power, but it’s the best you can get out of drivers this size.

The right side of the speaker houses a large volume knob that is easy to find when the movie you’re watching suddenly becomes ten times louder. Its max volume won’t quite fill the room, but the sound is fairly clear even maxed out.

Behind the volume knob you’ll find the USB cable, 3.5mm audio cable, and 3.5mm microphone cable. The Elegiant Sound Bar also has headphone and microphone inputs for easier cable routing.

The cables are a very average four feet, but because you might need to position this speaker differently from a 2.0 setup, they would certainly benefit from being longer.

This gripe aside, the build quality is solid all around. The speaker grill is is sturdy and cool looking, and the case is magnetically shielded against digital interference.

If a portable soundbar fits your needs, then the Elegiant USB will be a pleasant surprise.

Price: $30.99 (50 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Elegiant USB Sound Bar here.


Pros:

  • Present midrange
  • Good stereo separation
  • Solid build quality

Cons:

  • Sound bar form requires more desk space
  • No mounting options
  • Short cables

Find more Elegiant USB Sound Bar information and reviews here.



3. Earise AL-101 Mini Computer Speakers

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The Earise AL-101 Mini Computer Speakers are some of the smallest and cheapest satellite speakers you’ll find online. Each speaker is 4.1 x 3.6 x 4.1 inches, and the whole setup is only $12.

But the real question is: how does it compare against the competition? Surprisingly well, actually.

These compact speakers can pump out some solid sound, especially given how small they are. The sound is clearer than internal laptop speakers, but it certainly won’t blow you away.

These speakers are most useful for their volume output, which is considerable for their size. There is very light distortion at max volume, but it would be hard to notice if you are listening to a YouTube video or some background music.

The build quality is where I have fewer nice things to say. The plastic casings of these speakers would get gradually beat up if they were tossed in a bag every day.

The inline volume control wheel, feels very cheap too. It is found in the middle of the 4.5 foot audio and USB cables, and isn’t easy to reach.

Still, the pros of this compact Japanese speaker set definitely outweigh the cons. It is a viable budget pick.

Price: $11.99

Buy the Earise AL-101 Mini Computer Speakers here.


Pros:

  • Compact design
  • High max volume
  • Low price

Cons:

  • Low quality volume wheel
  • Poor build quality
  • No bass

Find more Earise AL-101 Mini Computer Speakers information and reviews here.



4. Altec Lansing BXR1220 Desktop Speaker System

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The BXR1220 speakers from Altec Lansing are a set of two tweeters that are built from the ground up for producing big audio from a small package.

Each cylindrical speaker is 4.8 x 2.8 x 3.7 inches, and the two are connected by a four foot cable. Some consider this a little short. The right speaker has volume wheel on top and an on/off switch hidden on the back.

The right speaker also houses the 3.5mm audio and USB power cables, which are about five feet long. Each speaker has a stand on the front end that points the sound up to your ears where it needs to be.

These stands have nice rubber feet which reduce interference from rumbling against your desk.

The speakers will rumble a decent amount too, as these two full-range drivers push out some well-balanced sound. The highs are clear and the low end is present, making for an acceptable overall frequency response (180Hz-20kHz).

The cylindrical shape of the speakers allow the drivers to push more air. This makes for some decent bass, even if the BXR1220sdon’t quite match their subwoofer-sporting counterpart, the BXR1221s.

Price: $20.95

Buy the Altec Lansing BXR1220 Desktop Speaker System here.


Pros:

  • Clear highs
  • High max volume
  • Volume wheel and on/off switch

Cons:

  • Onboard LED is distracting
  • Short cables

Find more Altec Lansing BXR1220 Desktop Speaker System information and reviews here.



5. Logitech Multimedia Speakers S150

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Logitech is one of the best-known PC accessory companies out there. Their compact S150 speakers, though, have mostly flown under the radar as an awesome USB-powered budget pick.

These speakers are 3.5 x 3.9 x 6.3 inches each, making them one of the smallest Logitech has produced. They have a simple rounded design with a hideously outdated cloth grill covering the speakers.

As long as your expectations aren’t too high, these $13 speakers will sound just fine. The sound is a little flat, but no frequencies seem overpowering or harsh.

With a frequency response of 90Hz-20kHz, the low end isn’t as full as it could be. But again, don’t expect too much in this price range.

The volume goes quite a bit higher than your average laptop speakers, but leave something to be desired with their highest setting.

In terms of build quality, the speakers are pretty sturdy. The right speaker connects to a lone USB cable that provides both power and digital audio, eliminating the need for a 3.5mm audio jack.

The right speaker also has volume and mute controls. Because this of the digital audio connection, the volume buttons will actually change your PC’s volume in the digital mixer, which is important to note.

This speaker’s sound may not stand out, but its feature set and price tag certainly will.

Price: $12.95

Buy the Logitech Multimedia Speakers S150 here.


Pros:

  • Balanced sound
  • No 3.5mm audio jack needed
  • Low price

Cons:

  • Ugly and dated design
  • Low max volume
  • Short cables

Find more Logitech Multimedia Speakers S150 information and reviews here.



6. Dell AC511 USB Soundbar

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The Dell AC511 is yet another solid soundbar-styled USB speaker option. At 1.5 x 16.5 x 1.9 inches, it is nearly the same size as the pricier Elegiant USB Soundbar. And it sounds just as good.

The sound is bright and clear, with just enough bass to keep the mix feeling balanced. It gets fairly loud and has decent stereo separation to boot.

In terms of build quality, the AC511 is a decently sturdy device, built from thick plastic.

It has a proprietary T-hook mounting system meant to work with Dell monitors, but can sit on your desk or below most monitors just as easily.

The right side of the soundbar houses a small volume knob (which doubles as a power switch), while the left side houses a headphone and aux input.

On the back is a lone USB cable which is about two feet long. It connects to a PC to provide digital audio and power. That means that there is no 3.5mm audio connection required.

Many reviews have stated that the headphone jack can be finicky, but I haven’t personally run into any such problems yet.

In fact, the Dell AC511 has proven itself to be a reliable and powerful set of speakers for most budget needs.

Price: $21.38

Buy the Dell AC511 USB Soundbar here.


Pros:

  • Bright and clear sound
  • High max volume
  • No 3.5mm audio jack needed

Cons:

  • Headphone jack can be finicky
  • Mounting system is Dell-proprietary

Find more Dell AC511 USB Soundbar information and reviews here.



7. Mixcder Multimedia USB Computer Speakers

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The Mixcder Multimedia USB Computer Speakers are a pair of boxy 2.0 satellites that add some flair and audio quality to your laptop battlestation.

These speakers look like old school monitors, but shrunken down to a packable size. They measure in at 3 x 3.9 x 5.3 inches, and are built to be durable.

Each diaphragms is covered with the same metallic grill, and that includes the passive bass ports on the side.

Don’t bother trying to factor these bass ports into the sound, as they really don’t make much of a difference. The speakers do have a nice clean sound, but you won’t see a strong low end.

The frequency response is 180Hz-20KHz, which means the low end is a little rounded off. The mids and highs, however, come through clearly.

The max volume is impressive, but if you crank it up to the max you will hear a noticeable distortion. Instead, you’ll want to keep it around 80% of the volume.

You can adjust the volume via a wheel on the backside of the right speaker. That is also where the 3.5mm and USB cables are connected to the speakers.

The cable that connects the two speakers is about two feet long, and the cable that connects to the computer is about four feet long.

If you aren’t off-put by the boxy style of these speakers, they are a great companion for laptops and desktops alike.

Price: $22.99

Buy the Mixcder Multimedia USB Computer Speakers here.


Pros:

  • Clear mids and highs
  • High max volume
  • Stylish and durable

Cons:

  • Bulky form factor
  • Weak low end
  • Distorts at max volume

Find more Mixcder Multimedia USB Computer Speakers information and reviews here.



8. Arctic S111 USB Computer Speakers

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Why did Arctic choose not to name their square USB speakers Ice Cubes? I’ll never know. Instead, we have the S111 speakers, which are a stylish and compact option for USB-powered audio.

These speakers are only 2.8 x 2.8 x 2.8 inches, making them the easiest speakers we’ve found to stow and carry. Of course, this also means its drivers are pretty small too.

Before we even start to talk about audio quality, it should be known that these speakers don’t have the physical air displacement power to deliver clear audio at high volumes.

The volume goes decently high, but the heavy distortion you experience means you’ll likely end up listening at 80% volume. Now, as for the sound quality, it’s pretty solid.

At this price, all you need is a clear and balanced sound, and the S111 delivers. A speaker this size has virtually no bass, but it is definitely an upgrade over the silver dollar-sized speakers you were probably using before.

These speakers need a 3.5mm and a USB connection to hook up to your PC. Its embedded cables are about three feet long, including the one that connects the left and right satellites.

Aside from a volume wheel on the back of the right speaker, which doubles as a power switch, there isn’t that much else to talk about.

These little speaker cubes are down to business, and are fantastic deal for under $20.

Price: $15.99

Buy the Arctic S111 USB Computer Speakers here.


Pros:

  • Clear and balanced sound
  • Compact and stylish
  • Low price tag

Cons:

  • Low max volume
  • Weak low end

Find more Arctic S111 USB Computer Speakers information and reviews here.



9. Satechi Dual Sonic Speakers

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Satechi’s Dual Sonic Speakers are a futuristic looking pair of tweeters that catches the eye with a brushed metal grill and subtle blue LED accents.

The name of the game here is ease of use. The speakers are plug and play once you connect a 3.5mm cable and a USB cable to your computer.

These cables are a little over three feet, while the one that connects the two speakers is just under three feet.

Each speaker has foam bottom underneath to prevent errant vibrations from moving the speakers around. The satellites are both 3.9 x 3.6 x 2.5 inches, which is fairly compact.

Overall, the build quality of these speakers is great, and the same can be said for their sound.

The sound is clear and balanced, with a slight bump in the low mids. That is not to say you will hear deep bass frequencies from these 1.5-inch drivers, but it still sounds good even if it doesn’t shake the room.

These speakers can achieve a pretty solid max volume, but not without distorting towards the max. The inline volume controls are found on the USB cable.

Overall, if these Satechi speakers had a better volume control and a way to turn off its LEDs, then there would be nothing left to dislike about these low profile satellites.

Price: $27.99 (7 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Satechi Dual Sonic Speakers here.


Pros:

  • Clear and balanced sound
  • Compact and stylish
  • Solid low mids

Cons:

  • Inline volume control is hard to reach
  • Distorts at max volume
  • LED cannot be disabled

Find more Satechi Dual Sonic Speakers information and reviews here.



10. Cyber Acoustics Portable USB Laptop Speaker

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Amazon

The Cyber Acoustics CA-2880 is one last soundbar-styled speaker we’ll leave on the table for you. This one stands out from the competition with its convenient clip-on style.

This speaker solves the placement problems that I identified in other soundbars by clipping onto the top of your screen like a clothespin.

At 1.3 x 8.2 x 2.5 inches, it isn’t overly cumbersome despite weighing about one pound. It gives you enough length on its USB and 3.5mm cables to try some different positioning.

Its power and volume controls are easy to access atop the speaker, and the speaker does have a small LED to show you when it is on.

The speaker can pump out some serious volume, although distortion is a serious issue if you take it any higher than 80%.

Overall, the sound is good but not great. At this price range, it can be hard to even tell the difference, so for casual listening, you may not even mind.

But if you want to analyze your favorite song, you may find the low end a bit muddied by the present treble.

If unbalanced sound is a dealbreaker, then this speaker probably isn’t right for you. But if you are looking for practicality and value, then you’ve got a solid contender here.

Price: $15.59 (28 percent off MSRP)

Buy the Cyber Acoustics Portable USB Laptop Speaker here.


Pros:

  • Convenient clip-on style
  • On/off and volume controls are easy to access
  • High max volume

Cons:

  • Distorts at max volume
  • Muddy low end

Find more Cyber Acoustics Portable USB Laptop Speaker information and reviews here.



Heavy, Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by linking to Amazon. Our product recommendations are guided solely by our editors. We have no relationship with manufacturers.
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1 Comment

سنگ ساختمان

Great article.
It is very interesting to read it in retrospective.

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