Dayton Audio B652-AIR vs. ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2

Dayton Audio B652-AIR 6-1/2” Bookshelf Speakers ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 Bookshelf Speakers
$85 $400
Dimensions (H × W × D)
11.81” × 7.06” × 6.44”
300mm × 179mm × 164mm
14.76” × 7.69” × 10.55”
375mm × 195mm × 268mm
Power Type
Passive Passive
Frequency Response
70-20,000 Hz 44-35,000 Hz
ASR Score
1.5 5.0
ASR Score w/Subwoofer
4.6 7.2

Key Takeaways

TLDR Summary: In the realm of budget audiophilia, the Dayton Audio B652-AIR and ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 stand tall. The Dayton offers stunning value with its AMT tweeter, delivering an airy top-end uncommon at its price point. However, its overall sound may lack the refinement and bass response that more discerning ears crave. The ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2, designed by audio legend Andrew Jones, commands a higher price but justifies it with a richer, more nuanced soundstage and authoritative low-end performance. For the entry-level enthusiast, Dayton entices with affordability, while ELAC appeals to those seeking a more sophisticated sonic footprint.

Speaker Comparison

When it comes to upgrading your home audio setup, the speaker landscape can be as varied as the music genres we love to indulge in. Today, we're placing two budget-friendly titans side by side: the Dayton Audio B652-AIR and the ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 bookshelf speakers. Both have a reputation for delivering exceptional value for money, but they cater to slightly different nuances in the audiophile lexicon.

Design and Build Quality

The Dayton Audio B652-AIR carries a no-frills approach to design, with a humble aesthetic that focuses purely on functionality. Its black vinyl finish and removable grill give it a classic bookshelf speaker appearance. The ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2, on the other hand, steps up with a more refined look that boasts a textured vinyl finish, making it feel more premium. Both are solidly built, but the ELAC provides a more visually appealing package that may sit better in a well-curated room.

Dayton Audio B652-AIR 6-1/2” Bookshelf Speakers
Dayton Audio B652-AIR arrow (at

Sound Characteristics

Let's dive into the sonic realm, where the Dayton Audio B652-AIR features their signature AMT tweeter (Air Motion Transformer) that promises clearer and crisper highs. These tweeters provide a detailed soundstage, albeit with a slightly leaner low-end response. The ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2, with its custom-designed silk-dome tweeter and woven aramid-fiber woofer, is engineered for a well-balanced sound profile that extends deeper into the bass. This makes the ELACs particularly adept at delivering a fuller, more robust listening experience.

Regarding the midrange, the B652-AIR performs admirably, delivering clean and articulate vocals. However, the midrange of the ELAC B6.2 is more pronounced, with a warmth and richness that breathes life into every track. This is largely thanks to the Debut 2.0 series' redesigned crossover that ensures a smoother transition between the tweeter and woofer, enhancing the overall audio coherence.

ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 Bookshelf Speakers
ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 arrow (at

Room Compatibility

Every audiophile knows that room characteristics can greatly influence speaker performance. The Dayton Audio speakers are relatively forgiving in terms of placement. They're compact and unobtrusive, making them ideal for smaller spaces or where a discreet setup is preferred. On the flip side, the ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2s are more demanding in terms of space, but they also have a greater potential to fill a room with their more expansive soundstage. They reward listeners who are willing to experiment with placement and may benefit from a bit of room to breathe.

Value Proposition

When considering value, the Dayton Audio B652-AIR punches above its weight class. These speakers are the quintessential budget pick for the entry-level audiophile or for those seeking to flesh out a secondary audio system without breaking the bank. The ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 speakers, while more expensive, justify their price with superior sound quality and a more attractive design. They're an investment for those who are looking for a more serious, long-term addition to their audio setup.

In conclusion, both the Dayton Audio B652-AIR and the ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 bookshelf speakers offer compelling choices for different reasons. The B652-AIR is perfect for those who want to venture into the world of improved audio without committing a significant amount of money. The ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2, however, is for the listener looking to take their sonic experience a step further, offering a richer, more immersive sound that could very well be worth the extra investment. Ultimately, the decision rests on personal priorities: cost efficiency versus audio nirvana.


Check Current Prices:

Dayton Audio B652-AIR 6-1/2” Bookshelf Speakers
Dayton Audio B652-AIR 6-1/2” Bookshelf Speakers
ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 Bookshelf Speakers
ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 Bookshelf Speakers

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Disclaimer: the speaker data listed on this website are correct to the best of our knowledge, but we do not guarantee the accuracy of the data. Please double-check any measurements with the manufacturer before making a final purchasing decision.