Speakers for Turntables Guide

5 Powered Speakers For Your Minimalist Turntable Setup

Many turntable users, both beginners and advanced, are opting for "minimalist" turntable setups. This refers to a turntable that plugs directly into powered / active speakers (meaning amplifiers are built in to the speaker), bypassing the traditional stereo system.

These minimaist setups have two main benefits: less cost and less stuff. Here we run down 5 of our favorite powered speakers for home listening. New to turntables? Also check out our  Beginner's Guide To Turntable Setups.

TIP: How do you know if a speaker is powered or passive? Powered speakers will have a power plug..

Minimalist Turntable Setup: Turntable's output plugs straight into powered speakers.

the industry standard compact

Audioengine A2+ ($269 pair)

In A Nutshell

  • At the sub-$300 (per pair) price range, the A2+s are the industry standard
  • Compact and loud, great for vinyl. Want bigger and louder? Check the A5+
  • Overall build quality is excellent, a solid pair of speakers. High satisfaction product.

Top Features

  • Clean design, look and feel from company that perfected this category of speaker
  • Designed for audiophiles, maintains essential features while removing extra features that might interfere with audio output
  • Built-in DAC, plug in your computer via USB for improved sound when playing digital files
  • We especially like them with the DS1 Speaker Stands

Limitations

  • No adjustments for bass and treble

ideal size + all the features you need

Kanto YU4 ($329.99 pair)

In A Nutshell

  • Mid-sized bookshelf that falls into sweet spot of loudness + compact size
  • Packed with features including AptX Bluetooth and built-in phono preamp
  • User friendly design with front-panel control knob + remote control
  • Customization / design-friendly, available in wide range of colors + finishes

Top Features

  • AptX Bluetooth connectivity: in addition to your records, wirelessly stream phone / computer
  • Built-in switchable phono preamp: works with all turntables
  • Remote control: controls input, volume, L/R balance and bass + treble levels
  • Optical inputs, subwoofer output, USB charge port

Limitations

  • Audiophiles may want more of an emphasis on sound quality

performance + features at impossible price

Edifier: R1280DB Powered Speakers ($129 pair)

In A Nutshell

  • Impossibly priced: great sounding + full featured speakers for $129 per pair?
  • Features Bluetooth connectivity, RCA + optical / coax inputs
  • Features on-board bass + treble controls, plus remote

Top Features

  • Best budget speaker under $150, hundreds of positive reviews
  • Versatile inputs: (2) separate RCA inputs, Bluetooth connectivity, optical / coax for TV / Gaming
  • We really like the on-board bass + treble controls, especially for listening to vinyl
  • Available in Black + Wood Brown

Limitations

  • Build-quality not equal to other speakers on the list

the high-end option

High-end powered speakers A80

Edifier A80 ($599-699 pair)

In A Nutshell

  • Obvious step up in build, design, features, and sound quality
  • Dynamic sound, this speaker was designed by renowned audio engineer Phil Jones
  • Built with high-quality components including Transparent brand wiring

Top Features

  • Loud, powerful output (100w)
  • Works equally well for streaming: Hi-res audio certified, Bluetooth 5.0
  • On-board treble and bass controls
  • Includes acoustic isolation foam pads

easy option for merging digital and analog music 

Sonos Five ($499)

In A Nutshell

Top Features

  • Build your system by adding more Sonos units
  • Control + customize your sound using powerful Sonos app

Limitations

  • Some vinyl users prefer to have their vinyl setup independent of the streaming environment

looking for your own minimalist turntable setup? 

Minimalist Turntable Setup

Turntable Lab specializes in these setups, check them out here.

Further Reading

Using A Turntable With Sonos / REVISED

Using A Turntable With Sonos / REVISED

Everything you need to know about connecting a turntable to Sonos.

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