Floor Standing Speakers Review

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Why Should I Buy Floor Standing Speakers?

The average person typically just walks into an electronics store or department and grabs the deal-of-the-day special on a full 5.1 or 7.1 system. They go home and set it up, and then enjoy their movies and music. Those systems get the job done, but true lovers of great audio will build their own systems a bit differently. Odds are that the first change you will want to make to achieve great sound will be to add a pair of floor standing speakers. Although this addition isn't the only change you have to make, it is arguably the most important.

We say it is the most important because it is a straightforward change that doesn't require excessive amounts of audio knowledge in precision adjustments and more. A quality set of floor standing speakers such as the Polk Audio TSi500, the BIC Acoustech PL-89 or the Yamaha NS-777 should be tuned by the manufacturer and ready to go. Audiophiles can play with it from there if they want, but the rest of the world doesn't want to have to take on an apprenticeship under one of them for the lifelong pursuit of audio superiority.

The other reason these speakers are so important is that they play the key role in audio of being the front left and right channels in your system. In a surround-sound setup, although there are other speakers, the front two channels are still the main driving force of your system. For those times when you want to shut off surround sound and use your system for stereo audio, such as for listening to music, floor standing speakers really show their prowess. The multiple speakers built into a single channel make them capable of producing a wider range of frequencies, and therefore better, more accurate sound. Note that you may have to add an amp to your system, due to the higher power demand. You can learn more about these speakers with our informative articles.

Floor Standing Speakers: What to Look For

With floor standing speakers, you want to keep your audio expectations for them in mind. They won't cover the full 20 Hz – 20 kHz range, but you want to get a set that covers most of it. This is especially true for high frequency response, since most of us have or will have a subwoofer that can pick up some slack on the low end. We looked for high frequency responsiveness specifically and more in the following three categories.

Performance
This category covers the frequency response primarily, but it also includes a few other important details. We took into account sensitivity, nominal impedance and the amplifier power you will need per channel. Also, we added the binding posts to this category due to the potential of bi-amping that some floor standing speakers allow, and gold-plating that can directly impact the performance of the speakers to some degree.

Drivers
With drivers it gets tricky. We looked at what the drivers are made of, but we only used that as a minimal influence on their actual score. The reason is that each type changes the sound slightly, which means that what sounds best is going to be somewhat skewed to preference. Therefore, we mostly based this section on the number, range and size of drivers. Ultimately, these will affect the performance of your floor standing speakers the most.

Features
Our features category for floor standing speakers covers the remaining notable attributes. We noted the design of each, but we did not use it to influence our rankings because which one is best is debatable. However, they do differ, so you will want to take that into your own personal consideration. We also looked at the size of the cabinet and the length of the warranty offered by the manufacture.

Ranking these quality tower speakers is difficult because of multiple aspects that are largely opinion based. However, we let the solid attributes carry each product. The best floor standing speakers have high-quality drivers that will give you a broad frequency response range and a suitably high sensitivity level. Tie those into a well-engineered build, and you get audio like you've never heard before.

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Electronics » Home Audio » Floor Standing Speakers Review
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Rank #1#2#3#4#5#6#7#8#9
10-9  Excellent
8-6    Good
5-4    Average
3-2    Poor
1-0    Bad
Polk Audio TSi500 BIC Acoustech PL-89 Yamaha NS-777 Boston Acoustics A 360 Definitive Technology BP6B JBL Studio 180 KEF C7 Cambridge Audio S70 Klipsch RF-42 II
Polk Audio TSi500 BIC Acoustech  PL-89 Yamaha NS-777 Boston Acoustics A 360 Definitive Technology BP6B JBL Studio 180 KEF C7 Cambridge Audio S70 Klipsch RF-42 II
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Lowest Price Per Pair
Visit Polk Audio TSi500
$348.00
Visit BIC Acoustech  PL-89
$589.00
Visit Yamaha NS-777
$265.77
Visit Boston Acoustics A 360
$399.00
Visit Definitive Technology BP6B
$349.99
Visit JBL Studio 180
$175.45
Visit KEF C7
$429.99
Visit Cambridge Audio S70
$499.00
Visit Klipsch RF-42 II
$299.00
Ratings
8.88
8.68
8.63
8.38
7.88
7.85
7.55
7.23
6.57
10
9
8
7
6
5
4
3
2
1
8.50
9.00
9.50
9.25
7.50
9.50
8.25
9.75
7.50
7.50
9.25
8.75
8.75
6.25
8.75
7.00
9.00
7.75
8.00
6.25
8.75
7.50
6.25
8.25
7.00
5.75
7.00
 
Performance
Lowest Frequency Response (Hz) 35 25 30 38 25 45 36 39 59
Highest Frequency Response (kHz) 25 23 35 25 30 22 40 20 24
Sensitivity (dB) 96 98 89 89 91 89 91 90 95
Nominal Impedance (ohms) 8 8 6 8 8 8 8 8 8
Minimum Amplifier Power (Watts) 20 10 20 15 20 15 15 15  
Maximum Amplifier Power (Watts) 275 250 250 200 175 200 200 120  
Crossover (Hz) 2500    2700, 800   3200, 800 2500   1620
Inputs (Binding Posts) 5-way   3-way 5-way 5-way 5-way   3-way  
Dual Sets of Binding Posts
 
  
Gold-Plated Binding Posts
 
Drivers
Number of Low Frequency Drivers 4 2 2 2 2 1 2 2 2
Low Frequency Size (in.) 6.5 8 8 6.5 5.25 6.5 6.5 5 4.5
Low Frequency Type Bi-laminate organic fiber Poly-injected Polymer-injected Mica Ceramic/glass fiber polymer Polymer PolyPlas   Polyfibre Cerametallic
Number of Midrange Frequency Drivers NA NA 1 1 NA 1 NA NA NA
Midrange Size (in.) NA NA 5 3.5 NA 4 NA NA NA
Midrange Type NA NA Poly Ceramic/glass fiber polymer NA PolyPlas NA NA NA
Number of High Frequency Drivers 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1
High Frequency Size (in.) 1 1 1 1 1 1 .75 1 1
High Frequency Type Silk Aluminum Aluminum Kortec Aluminum CMMD Lite Aluminum Paper Titanium
Magnetic Shielding  
 
 
Features
Design Ported Ported Ported Ported Sealed Ported Ported Ported Ported
Height (in.) 44.4 43 43.3 41.8 35 40 38 36.9 34.9
Width (in.) 8.3 11 10.9 13.6 7 7.9 8 6.3 6
Depth (in.) 17.8 10 15.4 10.8 11 13.1 11.25 9.4 9.7
Weight (lbs.) 45 42 53.7 43.9 42 38.6 29.5 27.3 27.1
Warranty (Years) 5 8 2 5 5 1 5 5 2