Monoprice Monolith THX-265B vs. Pioneer SP-BS22-LR

Monoprice Monolith THX-265B Bookshelf Speakers Pioneer SP-BS22-LR Bookshelf Speakers
$800 $160
Dimensions (H × W × D)
15.40” × 9.70” × 11.40”
391mm × 246mm × 290mm
12.56” × 7.13” × 8.44”
319mm × 181mm × 214mm
Power Type
Passive Passive
Frequency Response
65-24,000 Hz 55-20,000 Hz
ASR Score
n/a 5.0
ASR Score w/Subwoofer
n/a 7.5

Key Takeaways

TLDR Summary: In the clash of the budget titans, the Monoprice Monolith THX-265B and Pioneer SP-BS22-LR bookshelf speakers offer distinct soundscapes for discerning ears. The THX-265B, with its THX certification, caters to home theater aficionados craving cinematic precision, while the SP-BS22-LR, tuned by renowned designer Andrew Jones, delivers a warm, balanced profile appealing to music lovers. The Monolith boasts of robust build and power handling, whereas the Pioneers shine with their approachable price and smooth performance. Both promise immersive audio experiences, but your preference for movies or music might tip the scales. Choose wisely, for the sound that fills your room is a personal journey.

Speaker Comparison

When it comes to selecting bookshelf speakers, the audiophile landscape is replete with options that cater to various preferences and budgets. Among these, the Monoprice Monolith THX-265B and the Pioneer SP-BS22-LR have garnered attention for their distinct approaches to sound reproduction within the bookshelf category. Let us delve into the intricacies of these two contenders, comparing their strengths and weaknesses to guide those on the quest for the perfect sonic companion.

Design and Build Quality

In terms of design, the Monoprice Monolith THX-265B speakers exude a certain gravitas with their robust construction and no-nonsense aesthetics. The precision in engineering is evident, with a build quality that suggests they're made to last and perform consistently. On the other hand, the Pioneer SP-BS22-LR, designed by the renowned Andrew Jones, sports a more conventional look but with rounded corners that not only soften its appearance but also contribute to reducing standing waves inside the cabinet.

The Monolith's heft is indicative of dense materials and substantial internal bracing, which serve to dampen unwanted resonances that can color sound. The Pioneers, while lighter, still manage to feel solid and well-assembled. Both sets of speakers reflect a commitment to quality, but the Monolith clearly aims for an aura of indestructibility that serious audiophiles might find appealing.

Sonic Character and Performance

On to the heart of the matter: their sonic character. The Monoprice Monolith THX-265B speakers are THX certified, ensuring that they meet rigorous standards for volume, clarity, and sound reproduction. This translates to a soundstage that's wide and immersive, with a precision that's quite palpable in complex passages. The highs are pristine without being piercing, the mids are articulate, and the lows have a controlled tightness that's a testament to their engineering.

Pioneer SP-BS22-LR Bookshelf Speakers
Pioneer SP-BS22-LR arrow (at

The Pioneer SP-BS22-LR, while not THX certified, still shines in its performance. The speaker's strength lies in its organic, warm sound signature that is both forgiving and inviting. It's a sound that doesn't demand attention, but rather, envelops you in a cocoon of auditory comfort. The bass response, while less pronounced than the Monoliths, is natural and adequate for most genres of music, especially when considering the speakers' modest size.

It's also worth noting that the Monoliths' adherence to THX standards means they strive to recreate the sound as the audio engineer intended it, which is an attribute that purists will undoubtedly appreciate. However, the Pioneers, with their soft-dome tweeter and sophisticated crossover, offer a sweet and smooth treble that complements the overall sound signature beautifully.

Compatibility and Integration

When integrating these bookshelf speakers into a home audio system, one must consider the compatibility with other components. The Monoprice Monolith THX-265B, with its demanding nature, will benefit from pairing with a high-current amplifier that can deliver the power it craves to unlock its full potential. They are unforgiving in that respect, exposing the weaknesses of underpowered or low-quality amplifiers.

The Pioneer SP-BS22-LR is much more accommodating in terms of amplification. They are less sensitive and require less power to perform optimally, making them a good match for entry-level receivers and modest setups. This flexibility can be a boon for those who are building their system incrementally or are on a tighter budget.

Ultimately, the choice between the Monoprice Monolith THX-265B and the Pioneer SP-BS22-LR bookshelf speakers comes down to personal preference, system compatibility, and listening goals. The Monoliths offer a more precise, accurate sound with a build that promises endurance, making them well-suited for those seeking an authoritative audio experience. The Pioneers, with their approachable and warm sound, are perfect for listeners who prize a natural sonic landscape that's easy to integrate into a variety of audio systems. Whichever path one chooses, both speakers stand as testaments to the fact that high-fidelity sound need not be unattainable or uncompromising.

Check Current Prices:

Monoprice Monolith THX-265B Bookshelf Speakers
Monoprice Monolith THX-265B Bookshelf Speakers
Pioneer SP-BS22-LR Bookshelf Speakers
Pioneer SP-BS22-LR 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.