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RBH Sound R-5 Bookshelf and R-515 LCR Speaker Review

by August 07, 2018
RBH Sound Impression Series R-5 & R-515 Speakers

RBH Sound Impression Series R-5 & R-515 Speakers

  • Product Name: R-5 Bookshelf Speaker and R-515 LCR Speaker
  • Manufacturer: RBH Sound
  • Performance Rating: StarStarStarStar
  • Value Rating: StarStarStarStarStar
  • Review Date: August 07, 2018 00:00
  • MSRP: $ 150/ea R-5 (Black), $175/ea R-5 (High-Gloss Black); $215/ea R-515 (Black), $250/ea: R-515 (High-Gloss Black)

Model Name: R-5

  • Series: Impression
  • System Type: Bookshelf Speaker
  • Frequency Response: 57Hz-25kHz (±3dB)
  • Sensitivity: 85.5dB (2.83V @ 1 Meter)
  • Recommended Power: 25-125 Watts
  • Woofer(s): (1) 5.25" (133mm) Poly-mica
  • Tweeter: 1" (25mm) Fabric Dome
  • Crossover Frequency: 3000 Hz
  • Crossover Slope: 12dB/Octave
  • Impedance:8 Ohms
  • Dimensions: 6.89” W x 12.6” H x 8.08” D
  • Weight:10.51 lbs.
  • 5 Year Warranty

Model Name:R-515

  • Series: Impression
  • System Type: LCR/Center Channel Speaker
  • Frequency Response: 57Hz-25kHz (±3dB)
  • Sensitivity: 87dB (2.83V @ 1 Meter)
  • Recommended Power: 25-175 Watts
  • Woofer(s): (2) 5.25" (133mm) Poly-mica
  • Tweeter: 1" (25mm) Fabric Dome
  • Crossover Frequency: 3000 Hz
  • Crossover Slope: 12dB/Octave
  • Impedance: 6 Ohms
  • Dimensions: 21.65” W x 6.89” H x 7.13” D
  • Weight:15.16 lbs.
  • 5 Year Warranty


  • Gorgeous in High-gloss Black finish
  • Nice balanced sound
  • R-5s have very friendly electrical load
  • Very good build quality
  • Excellent control of dispersion on R-515


  • Slight peak in mid treble creates some mild sibilance in R-5 speakers


A past favorite speaker series for Audioholics was EMPtek’s acclaimed Impression speaker line because of its good performance and tasteful appearance and for its amazingly low pricing. In our reviews of the E5TiR and E55Ti, we noted their “stunning appearance” and “detailed and lifelike” sound. The Impression series went on to become a 9 year success for EMPtek and later, RBH Sound. RBH discontinued the original Impression series in order to revamp the production process for better manufacturing consistency and have now brought the Impression speakers back with a new design and new look but still at a very affordable price. The gamut of the new Impression speakers was covered in our RBH Impression Series preview. Of the selection of new Impression speakers, we took a close look at what is considered to be the entry points into this speaker line; the R-5 and R-515. How has RBH followed their widely-admired original Impression series, and is the new Impression speakers the same great bargain that the originals were? Let’s examine what RBH has delivered in the R-5 and R-515 speakers…

RBH Sound Impression Series Overview & First Listen YouTube Discussion

Packing and Appearance

The R-5 and R-515 arrived inordinately well-packed for speakers at this price point, with double-boxing, polyethylene foam protection on all sides and additional cardboard protection, and finally a cotton sleeve over the speaker to protect it from scuffs and moisture. RBH clearly doesn’t want to deal with shipping damage claims. This packing is worth holding onto in case the speakers have to be moved or shipped anywhere else.

R515 packing.jpg 

Once unpacked, the RBH speakers looked both adequate and also terrific.  I know, a little confusing, but I was intentionally sent a regular ‘Phantom’ Black, textured-vinyl finish speaker and also a gloss-black finish so I could get a sense of the difference between the two finishes.

R5 pair.jpg 

The standard Phantom Black finish is fine for the price, but it is not exactly lavish. The gloss-black, on the other hand, is pretty sweet. It is so nice, in fact, that it is well-worth the $25/ea upcharge, and it’s hard to believe that such a nice finish increases the price by such a modest amount. The Phantom Black finish that RBH also calls a satin finish is a textured vinyl that I have seen on a spread of low-cost speakers. It is not bad; it is innocuous and durable. It doesn't scratch or scuff easily, and RBH makes it available for theater rooms with projectors, since it is quite non-reflective. The High-gloss Black finish makes for a very pretty speaker, whereas the Phantom Black looks much more plain in comparison.

R5 3.jpg   R5 11.jpg

RBH R-5 standard black (left pic); high-gloss black (right pic)

The curved cabinet definitely helps to make these speakers look nice by getting away from a box shape. The matte-black woofer with its inverted dustcap looks great, and there is no way I would hide that with the grille, but that is a personal taste in aesthetics. The grilles tone down the speaker’s functional aspect of appearance but rob them of personality. The grilles are not going to do the sound any favors either, because the grille frames will only create more diffraction edges for the front baffle. Overall, I would say that the Phantom Black R-5 looks commensurate for the cost, whereas the High-gloss Black R-5 looks like a much more expensive speaker than it actually is.

R515 6.jpg     R515 grille.jpg

I would imagine the same holds true for the R-515, but I only received one in the Phantom Black finish. Nonetheless, it is a fine looking LCR/ center speaker.

Design Overview

R5 cabinet interior.jpg R5 drivers.jpg

At first glance, the RBH R-5 and R-515 adhere pretty closely to sensible design principles. They are not trying to break any rules or revolutionize loudspeaker design; they are merely trying to use a common form factor in order to produce a good sound from a nice-looking enclosure for a very reasonable cost. The R-5 is a medium-sized bookshelf speaker using a 1” dome tweeter and 5.25” woofer in a second-order crossover. The R-515 is a center speaker/ LCR that uses the same 1” dome tweeter and two 5.25” woofers in a MTM configuration that also uses a second-order crossover. The tweeters use a fabric dome diaphragm and the woofer uses a polymica cone. The woofer motor has a substantial magnet that is 1.5 cm thick, 8 cm diameter magnet, but the tweeter has a relatively huge magnet that is roughly the same mass: 2 cm thick and 7 cm in diameter! Normally, tweeters use a small neodymium magnet, but RBH has decided to use ferrite which has some advantages and disadvantages. The advantage of ferrite is it has better thermal dispersal properties and is less expensive, but a disadvantage is that it has to be a lot bigger, since neodymium has about ten times the magnetic force for the same volume of mass. The woofer uses a stamped steel frame and a bumped-out backplate with a vented pole piece.

 R5 crossover.jpg r515 crossover.jpg

R-5 crossover(left), R-515 crossover (right)

The second-order crossover looR5 rear.jpgks capable for the task of protecting the tweeter and keeping the woofer from interfering with higher frequencies. The R-5 crossover features two inductors, two capacitors, two resistors, and a polyfuse. The R-515 looks to have three capacitors, two inductors, and a polyfuse. The polyfuses protect the tweeters by limiting total current to a safe value. The crossover components are not massively overbuilt but neither are they bottom-of-the-barrel. They look to be a solid build for this price point.

The cabinet is a relatively robust construction that uses 2 cm thick panels all round. The R-5 uses a window brace between the woofer and tweeter, and the R-515 uses two window braces, each between one of the woofers and the tweeter. There is a generous amount of stuffing inside the speakers for damping and also isothermal conversion. The tweeter on the R-515 is offset to the edge of one side of the front baffle. Both speakers are rear-ported using 1.5” ports with slight flaring, with the R-5 having one port and the R-515 using two ports. Neither speaker has feet, but RBH provides two rubber bumpers for the R-515 which allows the user to adjust the tilt of the angle when the speaker is used in a horizontal orientation. The grilles are made from stretching a acoustically transparent fabric over a thick MDF frame. As was mentioned before, the frame of the grille is bound to create additional diffraction, so for the best sound, leave it off. Sturdy five-way binding posts are used to connect the speaker wire.

Listening Sessions

In my 24’ by 13’ (approximately) listening room, I set up the speakers with stand-off distances between the backwall and sidewall, and equal distance between speakers and listening position, with speakers toed-in to face the listening position. Listening distance from the speakers was about 7 feet. Amplification and processing was handled by a Pioneer Elite SC-55. No room correction equalization was used. At times, subwoofers were used to supplement the bass. Different crossover frequencies were used for the subwoofers, and I settled on an 80 Hz crossover.

Music Listening

Melody Gardot.jpg

As usual, I started close listening to the speakers with something that places emphasis on vocals, since getting the human voice right is so critically important for any would-be high-fidelity loudspeaker. For the RBH R-5 speakers, I choose the album “My One and Only Thrill” by Melody Gardot, which was recommended to me as jazz album with impeccably recorded vocals. “My One and Only Thrill” places Melody’s velvety voice squarely at the forefront; this album is a showpiece for her soulful singing as it shifts from a spread of different tempos and moods, from late-night lounge to a classier orchestral backup to higher-energy bossa nova rhythms. The R-5 speakers produced terrific imaging from a vivid soundstage of instruments with Melody’s voice anchored at dead center and absolutely no ambiguity in positioning. All instruments were reconstructed with detail and vitality, as was Melody’s voice. I did note some slight sibilance on ‘sh’ sounds, but it was mild, and Melody’s breathy singing style might have played a part in that as well. Overall this album sounded quite good on the R-5 speakers, but music this beautiful deserves pretty speakers, so the High-gloss Black Impression speakers really do make a better fit for this album than the phantom black finish.

For music of greater complexity and scale, I found a superb recording of Bach’s “St. John’s Passion” on the Teldec label conducted by the late Nikolaus Harnoncourt and performed by Arnold Schoenberg Choir backed with instrumental performance from Concentus Musicus Wien, a baroque music ensemble based in Vienna. This epic 2-hour oratorio recounts the final days of Jesus as related in the Gospel of John, and is given a spirited, energetic performance by Harnoncourt and his performers. The recording is lush yet crystal clear and has a wide dynamic range. The RBH R-5 speakers reproduced “St. John’s Passion” with finesse. Imaging for the lead vocalists was strikingly precise. The different ranges of the chorus had well-defined locations over the soundstage with lower-pitched voices occupying the right side and extending to higher pitches as the soundstage moves to the left. Different string sections had their fixed locations as well. Woodwinds also had a very tangible placement in the soundstage. The R-5 speakers had no problems scaling the dynamic range of this recording as gentle passages sometimes erupted into a crescendo of energy. Some voices had a crispness that could be slightly edgy at times, but that might have been due to the recording rather than the speakers, and the voices were mostly rendered with naturalism as were the instruments. Altogether, the music of Bach was conveyed with aplomb by the RBH R-5 speakers, and I can report that orchestral and choral music sound great with these speakers.  

St John's Passion.jpg     Lose Yor Faith.jpg

Imaging for the lead vocalists on the R-5s was strikingly precise.

On the opposite end of the music spectrum, I decided to throw in one of the rowdiest and least natural sounding albums I had, “Lose Your Faith,” a European album of the hardest electronic music that our friends on the other side of the Atlantic can cook up. This extremely high-tempo mix of tunes from various artists within the genres of hardcore techno and drum ’n’ bass blasts through 65 tracks by the end of the album, averaging about one track per minute. This is a great disc for those who have a very short attention span. I always try to listen to an album like this for each speaker review for something of a stress test for the speakers and also to see how quickly hearing fatigue can set in. This type of music will induce hearing fatigue much more quickly than most other genres due to an excess of high frequency energy, not to mention it's just very loudly recorded music. The R-5 speakers made this music tolerable, and also survived the moments without producing any obvious distortion where I pushed the volume to reference on the dial of my receiver. While I wouldn’t try to run the entire album at a really loud level with these speakers, it is reassuring that they can take some abuse at least for a short duration. Bookshelf speakers with these kinds of specifications aren’t normally party speakers. They can get loud, but the user has to have some sense of when there could be too much heat build-up in the voice-coils if they want the speakers to continue to function. A much better choice for loud music would be the R-55 tower speakers, which splits the thermal load between two midwoofers and also gives them a break in low-frequency excursion by crossing over to three 6.5” woofers at 120 Hz. The R-55 towers would be able to withstand a lot more abuse than the R-5 bookshelf speakers.

Movie Watching

It was with the RBH R-5 and R-515 speakers that I finally sat down to watch “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” As is well-known, sound mixes do not get more professional or polished than in this film, from fantastical yet realistic effect sounds to John Williams’ superbly recorded music score to clear and natural sounding dialogue recording (except for Benicio Del Toro’s character, but that had more to do with that character’s odd vocal tics). The RBH Impression speakers handled everything well, even at the loud levels that I ran for this movie. The lightsaber fights crackled and hummed with menacing power, the spaceship battles had a vivid acoustic soundscape (despite being set in the vacuum of space), and the planet-based carnage roared with a lifelike proximity on the RBH speakers. One notable section of extraordinarily good sound reproduction was the music over the end credits crawl; I don’t think I have heard John Williams’ memorable score sound better than that. Of course, the quality of the recording has a lot to do with it, but the speakers did not stand in its way, and that is very much to the credit of the speakers.

Last Jedi.jpg     How To Train Dragon.jpg

Another movie that I watched with the RBH Impression speakers is the second film in the “How To Train Your Dragon” series. The first “How To Train Your Dragon” film had a dazzling sound mix, and I had guessed that the second movie would be similar in that regard, since Skywalker Sound also did the sound design for this sequel. The sound mix was superb, and the Impression speakers were able to reproduce this movie with enthusiasm. The effects sound of the dragons soaring through the air, blasting fire from their mouths, or the various dragon roars were rendered with verve and dynamism by these speakers. John Powell’s energetic orchestral score was always strong and distinct as well, regardless of the on-screen action. Likewise, dialogue was always very clear, no matter what else was occurring. The RBH speakers helped to make my viewing of “How to Train Your Dragon 2” into a fun, absorbing experience. A movie like this greatly benefits from a capable sound system, and the R-5 and R-515 speakers provided that.

RBH R-5 Bookshelf and R-515 LCR Speaker Measurements and Analysis


r515 outdoor testing.jpg

RBH R-515 on Audioholics Measurement Test Platform

The RBH R-5 and R-515 speakers were measured in free-air at a height of 7.5 feet at a 1-meter distance from the microphone, and the measurements were gated at a 8.5 millisecond delay. In this time window, some resolution is lost below 250 Hz and accuracy is completely lost below 110 Hz. All curves have been smoothed to a 1/12 octave resolution.

 R5 spinorama.jpg   R515 spinorama.jpg

RBH R-5 (left) and R-515 (right) response curves

While there are some fluctuations in the above response curves, for the most part they are not bad. These are not the flattest frequency responses I have ever seen, but these are a $150/ea and $215/ea speakers, respectively, so perfection is not expected. For the R-5, one flaw that we see is a possible breakup mode that peaks at around 4.5 kHz which the crossover is not fully suppressing. This is likely the cause of the sibilance that I heard in some of the vocals. Something else to note in the directivity index of the R-5 graph is the evenness of the dispersion up until 10 kHz or so; from 1 kHz to 10 kHz, the off-axis response remains very stable and well-controlled. One interesting contrast that we see when we compare the R-5 and R-515 graphs is that the 4.5 kHz breakup peak seem to be inverted in the R-515’s direct axis measurement which speaks of some kind of phase cancellation. It only seems to occur on the direct axis response though, since it scarcely shows up on the other curves which all contain information about off-axis output. The R-515 seems to have somewhat hotter treble than the R-5, but those who worry that these speakers do not have an exact timbral match can relax; no horizontal MTM speaker has a timbral match with its bookshelf counterpart. The moment that you tip the bookshelf over and add another woofer on the other side of the tweeter, you have dramatically changed the directional behavior and thus the sound of that speaker. This affects all speakers of this design type.

For more information about the meaning of the curves in these graphs, please refer to our article Objective Loudspeaker Measurements to Predict Subjective Preferences.

 R5 waterfall 3d.jpg     R515 waterfall.jpg

RBH R-5 (left) and R-515 (right) Horizontal Responses +/- 100 degrees 

The above graphs depict the RBH Impression speaker’s lateral responses out to 100 degrees in ten-degree increments. In the R-5’s graph, we see that the lateral response mostly holds its shape at all off-axis angles. That means these speakers are very amenable to EQ’ing, where changes will be consistent across seating positions and acoustic reflections. In other words, EQ will have a predictable in-room response. The same isn’t as true of the R-515, at least in its horizontal orientation, because of the lobing patterns that the two woofers create at off-axis angles. Below 5 kHz we see nulls of cancellation formed at off-axis angles where the woofers are fighting each other for the same frequency but at different phases in the sound pressure wave. This happens with every MTM center speaker design where the tweeter is mounted between two woofers. While the R-515 has more irregularity for individual angle responses, we can see that overall it looks to have a flatter response than the R-5. The good news about that is that the irregularities of individual response angles can average out by the various acoustic reflections that ultimately combines at the listening position. This is why it is important to know how the speaker behaves off-axis; much of the sound we hear from an average domestic speaker system isn’t sound directly from the speaker itself but from reflected sounds off of in-room surfaces.

R5 Polar map.jpg 

R515 polar map horizontal.jpg

R515 polar map vertical.jpg

The above graphs show the same information as the preceding graphs but depict it in a way that offers new insight regarding these speakers’ behavior. Instead of using individual raised lines to illustrate amplitude, these polar maps use color to portray amplitude and this allows the use of a purely angle/frequency axis perspective. The advantage of these graphs is they can let us see broader trends of the speaker’s dispersion behavior more easily. I have included the graph of the R-515 in its vertical orientation for those who intend to use them as an LCR set. Of these responses, the best here belongs to the R-515 in its vertical orientation. The rate and shape of falloff is very consistent at off-axis angles. In fact, listeners could get a relatively full and listenable sound at a 60-degree angle off-axis, missing only some upper treble. The R-5 might have been the same except its tweeter output is comparatively recessed, so for a full sound using the R-5s, users will want to listen within 30 degrees of direct axis. When the R-515s are used in a horizontal orientation, the off-axis response starts to become very uneven past 20 degrees, so for the best sound from the R-515s when it is lying flat, try to stay within a 20-degree angle of the direction its tweeter is facing.

R5 vertical waterfall.jpg    R515 vertical waterfall.jpg

RBH R-5 (left) and R-515 (right) Vertical Responses +/- 100 degrees: 3D view

The above graphs depict the R-5 and R-515’s frequency response behavior on their vertical axis, where zero degrees is directly in front of the tweeter, negative degree values are below the tweeter, and positive degree values are above the tweeter. The vertical response isn’t nearly as critical as the horizontal response since human hearing isn’t as sensitive to reflections coming in from the floor and ceiling as it is to lateral reflections from side-walls. Furthermore, most people tend to listen at around the same height, unlike horizontal angles in which listening positions can be spread over a wide area. The dips in the high and low angles in the R-5 common to all conventional bookshelf speaker designs, although the R-5 fares better here than most. Most speakers start to exhibit these types of nulls much closer to direct axis than the R-5 does, but the R-5 offers a reasonably even response from 30 degrees below the tweeter axis to 20 degrees above it. You could place these speakers at positions a fair bit above or below listening position response and still get a reasonably full sound. For the best sound, however, try to use them at a height where the tweeter is level with the ear, but that isn’t as critical with these as it is with most speakers.

R515 vertical responses profile view.jpg 

 R-515 Vertical Responses +/- 100 degrees: 2D view

The vertical response of the R-515 is excellent- when it is laying down horizontally. Of course, this measurement would be its horizontal response when used vertically/standing upright. And when standing upright, its true vertical response would be the ‘horizontal’ response graph shown previously. If that is all a bit confusing to you, just understand that the R-515 behaves much better when standing upright so that the drivers are lined up vertically. In that orientation, we get a nice, smooth response at every lateral angle, which is much more important to the end sound than up/down angles.

 R5 low-frequency response.jpg     R515 low-frequency response.jpg

RBH R-5 Groundplane Bass Response

The above graph shows the RBH R-5 and R-515’s low-frequency responses that I captured using groundplane measurements (where the speaker and microphone are on the ground in a wide open area). RBH’s specifications of a +/-3dB window down to 57 Hz would seem to be a stretch by this measurement, but different measurement techniques can yield different curves, so I don’t believe they are trying to inflate the low-end extension on their product. By my measurement, I would give this speaker a -6 dB point of about 65 Hz. The difference between 57 Hz and 65 Hz is not consequential if a subwoofer is used, and I would recommend that a subwoofer be used with these speakers with an 80 Hz crossover or even higher frequencies in multiple sub setups where localization won’t be a problem. The nice thing about these measurements is that the low-frequency response is quite neutral for the most part, with hardly any boost in the low-end. Sometimes we see speakers that have inflated bass output around port tuning frequencies in order to give the impression of deeper extension than the speaker is actually capable of, effectively trying to substitute quality with quantity.

R5 Impedance.jpg      R515 Impedance.jpg

RBH R-5 (left) and R-515 (right) Impedance and Phase Response 

R515 baffle close up.jpgThe above graphs show the electrical behavior of the RBH R-5 and R-515 speakers. RBH specifies the R-5s to be 8-ohm speakers, and that is a very conservative specification if anything. For the most part the impedance hangs well above 8 ohms, and all steep phase angles occur at high impedance points. The R-5s are a very benign electrical load, and any amplifier will be able to handle them with ease, even very low-budget AVRs. The R-515 is a bit different. Since the woofers are wired in a parallel circuit, the impedance within their range is halved. RBH specifies the R-515s as a 6-ohm speaker, and, as a nominal rating, I would say that is accurate. While this is not as friendly an electrical load as the R-5s, most AVRs should be able to handle these speakers. However, those who use the R-515s for the entire front stage speaker set may want something better than an entry-level AVR to drive these speakers.

RBH specifies the R-5’s sensitivity at 85.5 dB and the R-515 at 87 dB for 2.83v at 1 meter. For the R-5s, I measured 83.7 dB and the R-515s, 87.6 dB for 2.83v at 1 meter. This kind of difference isn’t surprising, as there are a lot of different ways to gauge sensitivity. My sensitivity measurements of the Impression speakers are not especially high or low, and they are about what I expected. The R-5 and R-515 speakers can get loud, but the R-5 speakers in particular will need something more powerful than a low-wattage amplifier to get loud. I think most people will be happy with them so long as they use an amplifier that has more than 10 watts of power capability.


RBH has launched the new Impression speakers in a croR515 9.jpgwded market for their price range, so we have to ask what do these speakers bring to the table and why should they be considered over the many other speakers in this range? Although imperfect, these are really good speakers for their price range. The R-5 does have some peakiness in mid-treble range that imparts some mild sibilance to ‘s’ and ‘sh’ sounds, but that can be alleviated by listening at a 20 degree angle off direct-axis or by using a parametric equalizer to reduce 4.5 kHz by 4 dB with a Q factor of 2.8 or so. Automated room correction equalizers like Audyssey or YPAO may also be able to smooth the response out as well. The lateral dispersion of the R-5 is good, but the lateral dispersion of the R-515 when used in a vertical orientation is superb; the better the lateral dispersion, the broader coverage that the speakers will have, so these speakers won’t have a small “sweet spot” where they only sound good in a single position. The R-5 and R-515 have a reasonably good dynamic range and can stay clean at loudness levels that would satisfy most people. Those aspiring for THX Reference levels in dedicated home theater rooms will want speakers that are more robust, but these RBH Impression speakers are more than capable for most users.

Outside of the performance front, there are the aesthetics of the R-5 and R-515, which are fine in the phantom black finish and amazing in the High-gloss Black. I want to emphasize how nice these speakers look for the cost in High-Gloss Black. I’m not sure that a nicer-looking speaker can be had at that pricing. The High-gloss Black finish is only a $25/ea surcharge for the R-5s and $35/ea for the R-515. Those who get the High-Gloss Black will want to handle these speakers with cotton inspection gloves to avoid visible fingerprints on the cabinet surface- it’s that nice. Regarding amplifier compatibility, the R-5 is a very friendly speaker that can run on any amplifier, whereas the R-515 is a bit more demanding but still wouldn’t be a particularly difficult load. The build quality is generally quite good for the price, with a well-conceived enclosure, beefy-looking drivers, and a neatly-arranged crossover.

R5 14.jpg     R5 22.jpg

If you think the RBH Impression speakers might be a good fit for your system, there is a 30-day in home trial where the speakers can be returned for any reason for a full refund (minus return shipping charges), so there is little risk in giving them a try. Buyers get a 5-year warranty with an option to extend with a fee. To sum up the R-5 and R-515 speakers, they are a very well-rounded speaker system for an extremely reasonable price, especially for High-Gloss Black speakers. In a crowded field of $300/pr. to $500/pr. bookshelf speakers, they are a solid choice.

The Score Card

The scoring below is based on each piece of equipment doing the duty it is designed for. The numbers are weighed heavily with respect to the individual cost of each unit, thus giving a rating roughly equal to:

Performance × Price Factor/Value = Rating

Audioholics.com note: The ratings indicated below are based on subjective listening and objective testing of the product in question. The rating scale is based on performance/value ratio. If you notice better performing products in future reviews that have lower numbers in certain areas, be aware that the value factor is most likely the culprit. Other Audioholics reviewers may rate products solely based on performance, and each reviewer has his/her own system for ratings.

Audioholics Rating Scale

  • StarStarStarStarStar — Excellent
  • StarStarStarStar — Very Good
  • StarStarStar — Good
  • StarStar — Fair
  • Star — Poor
Build QualityStarStarStarStar
Treble ExtensionStarStarStarStar
Treble SmoothnessStarStarStar
Midrange AccuracyStarStarStar
Bass ExtensionStarStarStar
Bass AccuracyStarStarStarStar
Dynamic RangeStarStarStarStar
Fit and FinishStarStarStarStar
About the author:
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James Larson is Audioholics' primary loudspeaker and subwoofer reviewer on account of his deep knowledge of loudspeaker functioning and performance and also his overall enthusiasm toward moving the state of audio science forward.

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