Edifier R1700BT vs. JBL L52 Classic

Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers JBL L52 Classic Bookshelf Speakers
$180 $1000
Dimensions (H × W × D)
9.75” × 6.00” × 8.00”
248mm × 152mm × 203mm
13.00” × 7.74” × 8.51”
330mm × 197mm × 216mm
Power Type
Powered Passive
Frequency Response
60-20,000 Hz 47-24,000 Hz

Key Takeaways

TLDR Summary: In the realm of bookshelf speakers, the Edifier R1700BT offers a budget-friendly entry point with Bluetooth convenience, decent soundstage, and a contemporary design. Its DSP and dynamic range control ensure a balanced, albeit somewhat processed, audio experience. In contrast, the JBL L52 Classic leans on its storied heritage, providing a warm, authentic sound that purists adore, wrapped in a retro-chic aesthetic. With superior build quality and acoustic authenticity, the JBL comes at a premium, targeting the discerning audiophile who values legacy and natural sound over modern features like wireless connectivity. Choose Edifier for value and tech; JBL for timeless performance.

Speaker Comparison

The Edifier R1700BT and JBL L52 Classic are two prominent figures in the arena of bookshelf speakers, each one embodying distinct characteristics that appeal to different segments of the audio enthusiast community. The R1700BT, a relatively modern contestant, boasts Bluetooth connectivity and a contemporary aesthetic, whereas the JBL L52 Classic pays homage to the golden era of hi-fi with its retro design and time-tested acoustic principles. In this comparative exploration, we'll delve into the nuances that set these two apart, as well as their inherent strengths and potential limitations.

The Convenience of Connectivity

One of the most striking differences between the Edifier R1700BT and the JBL L52 Classic is the former's embrace of wireless technology. The R1700BT comes equipped with Bluetooth capabilities, allowing for the seamless streaming of audio from a variety of devices such as smartphones, tablets, and computers. This feature alone makes the R1700BT an appealing option for those who prioritize convenience and a clutter-free listening environment. On the flip side, the JBL L52 Classic remains true to its roots, relying solely on a traditional wired connection, which, while potentially limiting in terms of placement and source compatibility, is often preferred by purists for its potential impact on signal integrity.

Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
Edifier R1700BT arrow (at Amazon.com)

Sound Signature and Acoustic Performance

When it comes to sonic performance, each speaker has its own signature. The Edifier R1700BT offers a warm and balanced sound with a slight emphasis on the low-end, which can be appealing for genres that benefit from a bit of extra punch in the bass region. The R1700BT's sound is also characterized by its DSP (Digital Signal Processing), which can provide a more consistent listening experience across various sound levels. In contrast, the JBL L52 Classic aims for an accurate and neutral sound reproduction that closely mirrors the source material. With its 5.25-inch pure pulp cone woofer and 0.75-inch titanium dome tweeter, the L52 Classic provides a detailed and spacious soundstage that can rival larger floor-standing models, making it the choice for audiophiles seeking an uncolored and immersive audio experience.

Design and Build Quality

The design philosophy between these two speakers couldn't be more divergent. The Edifier R1700BT sports a sleek, modern look with its black wood finish and silver accents—a design that can easily integrate into a contemporary living space. The build quality is solid for its price point, but it's the design flair that makes it stand out from the competition. On the other hand, the JBL L52 Classic exudes vintage charm with its walnut wood veneer and Quadrex foam grille available in various colors. The build quality here is exceptional, with attention to detail and craftsmanship that pays tribute to JBL's storied legacy. It's not just a speaker; it's a statement piece that harkens back to the classic era of hi-fi.

JBL L52 Classic Bookshelf Speakers
JBL L52 Classic arrow (at Amazon.com)

While both speakers have their merits, the target audience for each is clear. The Edifier R1700BT is aimed at the modern listener who values ease of use, versatility, and a pleasant, bass-forward sound. Its Bluetooth functionality and stylish design make it a fantastic addition to a casual listening setup or a home office. Meanwhile, the JBL L52 Classic targets the audiophile who appreciates the nostalgia of the 70s hi-fi scene and demands uncompromised audio fidelity. This speaker is more than capable of serving as the centerpiece in a dedicated listening room or forming part of a high-end audio system.

When discussing power and amplification, the differences become more evident. Edifier's R1700BT is a powered speaker, meaning it houses its own integrated amplifier. This not only simplifies the audio setup, as there's no need for an external amplifier, but it also ensures that the power output is perfectly matched to the speaker's drivers. JBL's L52 Classic, conversely, is a passive speaker, requiring an external amplifier or receiver to drive it. This gives the listener the flexibility to pair the speaker with an amp that suits their specific sonic preferences, but also adds an additional step and potential cost in the setup process.

In conclusion, the choice between the Edifier R1700BT and JBL L52 Classic bookshelf speakers ultimately boils down to personal preference, use-case scenarios, and aesthetic values. The R1700BT is a splendid option for those seeking modern features and a warm, room-filling sound without the fuss of additional components. The JBL L52 Classic, however, is a nod to the audiophile's soul, a beautiful recreation of a bygone era that doesn't just play music but invites you into an experience steeped in the rich history of high-fidelity sound. Regardless of which path one chooses, both speakers stand as commendable ambassadors of their respective philosophies in the world of audio reproduction.

Check Current Prices:

Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
JBL L52 Classic Bookshelf Speakers
JBL L52 Classic 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.