Satechi ST-SX200 Sound Quality and Conclusion
I paired the Satechi ST-SX200 speakers with my phone and computer via Bluetooth and the Oppo DV-970HD via a wired connection. The first thing I was interested in knowing was the operation of the subwoofer output. I connected the Satechi ST-SX200 sub out to the input of the SVS PC12-NSD subwoofer. I played some very low (20-30Hz) test tones through the Satechi ST-SX200 speakers. The SVS rumbled the room but I could also feel the Satechi ST-SX200 driver trying to reproduce the sound as well. This indicated that there was no internal HPF crossover in the Satechi ST-SX200 speakers. For your sub, you can use the internal crossover to eliminate the high frequencies but you'll have no way to eliminate the low frequencies from the speakers. For the price of the speakers, this is not unexpected.
Machined aluminum dial
Next, I was interested in how low the Satechi ST-SX200 speakers could really play. I once again played some test tones including some sweeps. The Satechi ST-SX200 speakers didn't start reproducing audible sound until around 80-90Hz. Sweeps were fairly well represented though they faded out on the top end as well. If you took a look at the specifications of the Satechi ST-SX200, you'll notice full range for both Bluetooth and Aux inputs. That's just telling you that it will accept those frequencies over those inputs, not that it can reproduce them.
The lack of bass was apparent with songs like Junior B from yello and Crazy from Seal. The low sweep in Junior B sounded like a thump followed by nothing and there were whole bass notes missing from Crazy. In the context of a $99 speaker with Bluetooth, the bass response isn't all that surprising or even much of a knock. The subwoofer output, something we haven't seen on other, non-Bluetooth speakers costing much more, makes this almost a non-issue. If you are looking for tremendous bass out of a speaker that bills itself as "AirBass", you're going to be disappointed. Still, considering the size, the bass response isn't bad.
The top end of the frequency response range was rolled off but not unpleasant. Very high notes sounded plastic and shrill, but these were the exceptions and not the rule. The midrange was warm though "detailed" would not be a word I would use to describe the Satechi ST-SX200 speakers. These are speakers that you'll love to use to listen to music casually or as a background solution.
I felt that the Satechi ST-SX200 speakers performed best in a near-field configuration. I placed them on my computer desk and found that the imaging and soundstage was perfectly respectable if not mind-blowing. In a larger room, their 20 watts (we're guessing that's 10 watts per channel) could fill the space with sound, though even at maximum volume they weren't overly loud. As I turned the volume up, the bass and lower midrange became more pronounced, blurring the performance. As a background music solution in a large room, they were very good and I could see them in a living room or a kitchen. At a computer desk, however, is where they could really shine.
Are you looking for new computer speakers? The Satechi ST-SX200 AirBass Active Bluetooth speakers are a great solution. With a single usable input on the back (either 3.5mm or stereo RCA) and Bluetooth, you can connect your computer and stream from your phone or device. The Satechi ST-SX200 have a USB port for charging, a subwoofer output (a rarity on speakers of this size/price), and a very small form factor. With a few caveats, it is hard to find anything really wrong with the Satechi ST-SX200 speakers. At $99, they are a great value and we have no problems recommending them.
Satechi ST-SX200 AirBass Active Bluetooth speakers
MSRP $129.99 (sale for $99.99)
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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:
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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.
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