Choosing the right set of speakers for your desk or living room can be fun but tough all at once. There are so many different choices in all price ranges and most of the time you can't just borrow a set to try them out. Ideally, you want options so you can use them with a small receiver or through your computer, and having Bluetooth as well as an easy way to connect a Chromecast Audio is a must for most of us.

Edifier sent me a pair of S880DB speakers to try and I'm impressed. These little speakers not only look beautiful but deliver where it counts: great sound without spending a ton of cash. $300 brings true Hi-Res audio to any room in a compact and complete package.

Edifier S880DB speaker system

Price: $299.99

Bottom line: Edifier's S880DB speaker system not only is easy to use almost anywhere, but they sound like components that cost a lot more.

The Good

  • Lovely, elegant design
  • Choice of input methods
  • Hi-Res file support
  • Cables included

The Bad

  • More expensive than other desktop speakers
  • Light wood and white color scheme won't match every decor
  • A few inches of clearance needed because of thick cables

They're surprisingly small considering the sound they can put out; each speaker measures 5.5 inches wide by 6.5 inches deep and is only 9 inches tall. They're active speakers, which means you don't need any sort of external amplifier but you will need to supply power from a wall outlet. Y

ou can use them through a standard set of RCA jacks, USB from a computer, and coaxial and optical connections are there if you want to ramp things up a notch. For wired connections even the cables you'll need are included: you'll find a 3.5 mm to RCA splitter, an RCA cable, a shielded USB cable, and an optical cable at the top of the box in their own little tray.

Of course, Bluetooth is an option and the S880DB speakers are Bluetooth 4.1 ready for easy pairing with your phone, laptop, or tablet. you'll be able to connect to these speakers no matter what you're using to play your music.

The wireless remote not only powers the pair on or off, but has controls for Bluetooth audio (FF, Rewind, Play, and Pause) and four EQ settings. Choose from Monitor, Dynamic, Vocal, or Classic to change settings so the sound matches what you're playing.

I didn't expect a lot from these, but I was pleasantly surprised and you really do have a nice mix of sound profiles as well as a flat studio monitor setting if you do your fine-tuning elsewhere.

Since they're active speakers, Edifier has also included some basic audio controls in the rear panel and you have an analog knob for treble, bass, and volume if you'd rather set things up and not have to touch them again.

A 192kHz DAP means your Hi-Res source files are going to sound the way you expect them to sound: awesome.

Everything above makes for a great set of bookshelf speakers for almost any room, but what really puts these over the top is the onboard processor and amp. When you're using the USB, coaxial, or optical connection the digital audio processor has a 192kHz sample rate. with the right source files, these tiny little bookshelf speakers are true Hi-Res monitors that will make your inner audiophile tingle just a little bit.

You're not going to get a wall of sound effect from the 19mm 12 watt treble drivers and 32-watt 3.75-inch bass drivers but you will get more than enough sound to fill any room with enough separation to make you think you're listening through something that costs a lot more and takes more space.

More: Forget Sonos, Chromecast Audio is the better whole-home audio solution

I've been using these through my desktop, paired to my phone, and with a Chromecast Audio for a week and I am going to hate sending them back. The Edifier S880DB set brings a complete audio solution for almost everything in a compact and sexy looking package, and sound as good as my own desktop setup consisting of a Yamaha receiver, Pioneer monitors and a bird's nest of wires.

If you're looking for premium audio for your house, no matter how you want to connect them, these are one of the best ways to get there.

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