Dayton Audio B652-AIR vs. Dayton Audio MK402BTX
|Dayton Audio B652-AIR 6-1/2” Bookshelf Speakers
|Dayton Audio MK402BTX Powered Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
|Dimensions (H × W × D)
11.81” × 7.06” × 6.44”
300mm × 179mm × 164mm
9.50” × 5.75” × 6.63”
241mm × 146mm × 168mm
|ASR Score w/Subwoofer
TLDR Summary: In the realm of budget-friendly audio, Dayton Audio presents two compelling offerings: the B652-AIR with its AMT tweeter brings a detail-rich soundstage, offering remarkable clarity for its price point. Meanwhile, the MK402BTX steps up as a versatile contender with built-in Bluetooth and a punchy bass response, thanks to its 4 woofer. Both systems deliver Dayton Audio's commitment to value, but the choice boils down to preference—pure, wired audiophile experience with the B652-AIR, or the convenience of wireless streaming and an all-in-one solution with the MK402BTX. Balancing cost and features, each serves a unique listener's niche.
When it comes to affordable yet impressive audio solutions, Dayton Audio has remained a steadfast provider for enthusiasts who balance budget with performance. The B652-AIR and MK402BTX speakers are two offerings that showcase Dayton's commitment to this ethos, catering to different user needs and preferences. While the B652-AIR is a passive speaker requiring an external amplifier, the MK402BTX steps up as a self-powered, Bluetooth-capable alternative. Both speakers are designed to deliver an enjoyable listening experience, but the diverging features set them apart for various listening scenarios and user requirements.
Design and Build Quality
The B652-AIR features a classic bookshelf design with a removable black cloth grille, while the MK402BTX sports a more contemporary look with a textured, black vinyl finish. Both are compact enough for small to medium-sized rooms, but the aesthetic differences may make one more appealing than the other depending on the user's taste. In terms of build quality, they both feel solid and durable, suggesting that Dayton Audio has not compromised on construction despite the affordability of these models.
Connectivity is a prime area where the B652-AIR and MK402BTX differ significantly. The B652-AIR's passive design means it must be connected to an amplifier, limiting its versatility but potentially offering a higher quality audio signal path for purists. The MK402BTX, on the other hand, boasts integrated Bluetooth technology, providing the convenience of wireless streaming from various devices. This feature alone could be a deal-breaker for users seeking a more modern, cable-free setup.
Both speakers incorporate Dayton Audio's signature AMT tweeter, delivering detailed and crisp high frequencies. The B652-AIR has a 6-1/2” woofer that provides a balanced and full-bodied sound signature, with surprisingly good bass response for its size. Meanwhile, the MK402BTX also offers impressive sound quality, with its 4” woofer producing clear mids and a tight bass that belies its smaller driver size. However, the B652-AIR may have the edge in natural sound reproduction due to its passive design and the generally higher quality amplification that can be paired with it.
In terms of power handling, the B652-AIR is at the mercy of the connected amplifier, which could be seen as a benefit or a drawback. The right amplifier can bring out the best in these speakers, offering control and power that the MK402BTX's internal amp might not be able to match. The MK402BTX, with its built-in amplifier, provides a convenient and immediate solution, but its performance ceiling is inherently capped by the capabilities of its internal electronics.
Compare to similar speakers
Price and Value
Price is always a consideration, and both the B652-AIR and MK402BTX are priced competitively within the budget speaker market. The B652-AIR, being passive, generally comes in at a lower price point, but one must factor in the cost of an amplifier. The MK402BTX, meanwhile, is a standalone solution that might appeal to those who want simplicity and value the inclusion of Bluetooth connectivity without needing additional components.
In conclusion, the Dayton Audio B652-AIR and MK402BTX bookshelf speakers cater to different audiences within the entry-level market. The B652-AIR is suited for traditionalists who prefer the potential quality of a separate amp and enjoy a more hands-on setup, while the MK402BTX is perfect for the convenience-oriented listener who values wireless streaming and an all-in-one package. Both models uphold Dayton Audio's reputation for delivering great sound at a modest price, making them worthy contenders for anyone looking to enhance their home audio experience without breaking the bank.
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