Audioengine 5+ Powered Loudspeaker (Playback 55)

Equipment+
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Stand-mount
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Products:
Audioengine 5+

If you prefer to swap the speakers so the left side has the passive unit while the right side has the active electronics with all the inputs and outputs, simply reverse the inputs to the 5+ and put the left speaker on right and the right speaker on the left. Why would you want to do this? One good reason would be because the 5+’s tweeter is not situated directly above the midrange/woofer driver, but rather is positioned approximately one inch off-center (so that the left and right speakers are mirror imaged). By reversing the speakers you can get the tweeters closer together than with the standard set-up. On my desktop the 5+ speakers imaged more precisely with the speakers switched left for right. Of course your mileage may vary, but it might be worth a try for either sonic or ergonomic reasons.

 

FEATURES

•Built-in power amplifiers (both are housed in the left speaker).
•Credit-card-sized remote control.
•Improved thermal management vis-à-vis earlier versions of the A5.
•RCA and mini-jack audio inputs.
•Front panel volume control.
•USB power charge port (allowing users to charge up iPods from the speaker system).
•Variable preamp audio output (this feature makes it much easier to add a powered subwoofer, if desired).
•Gold-plated connectors.
•Full-size 5-way speaker binding posts.
•Custom Kevlar woofers and silk dome tweeters.
•Hand-built MDF wood cabinets (except in the case of models ordered with laminated, carbonized bamboo enclosures).
•Magnetically shielded (not as important a feature as it once was, but a nice touch that means it’s OK to use the 5+ alongside old-school CRT monitors).
•Advanced, tuned cabinet with rear-ported waveguide.
•Stand-mount 1/4" threaded inserts.
•Cables included.

ERGONOMICS

Unlike some speakers, which can take as much as 100 hours to break-in and perform at their full potential, the 5+ speakers sounded fine right out of the box. And while I don’t doubt that they still improved with some playing time, they didn’t go through the sort of radical changes I heard during the Focal XS Book ($399/pair) speakers’ first 100 hours of break-in.

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