The Edifier R1280DB Bookshelf speakers are a set of two speakers complete with Bluetooth connectivity as well as coaxial, RCA and optical inputs. Unlike many of the other Bluetooth speakers featured on this site, this set is modeled very much like traditional Hi-fi speakers.
In terms of looks the Edifier R1280DB Bookshelf speakers are quite refreshing to look at, especially since I haven’t owned any speakers other than portable Bluetooth speakers for the past few years. They have that traditional box styling to them, just like what you’d see sat next to a HiFi. With a height of 9.5 inch, they aren’t too tall, but they aren’t too small either, this size makes them perfect for bookshelves or any other shelf for that matter.
As you’d expect and for obvious reasons, the left and right unit aren’t 100% identical. The right unit is home to the inputs, power cord and control panel. Present on both speakers is a speaker out panel. This is the panel used to connect the cable between both the right and left speaker units. A long enough cable is included to connect the two together, however, if you want them much further apart, any copper speaker cabling will do.
The input panel on the right speaker unit is home to two lots of RCA inputs, an optical input, a coaxial input. It’s located on the rear of the speaker, which is also home to the main power switch, the power cord and the left speaker connection point. The only part present on the rear of the left speaker is the right speaker connection point.
Around the right-hand side of the speaker is the control panel, which homes three controls knobs and a status LED light, which is used to remind you what mode the speakers are currently in. The knobs present here are for the treble, volume and bass. The volume knob also doubles as a mode selection button, should you accidentally misplace the remote.
Both speakers also have a removable front panel, which uses a soft fabric meshing. I have to admit, I’m not a fan of the front panels, They’re bare and kind of boring, luckily though they are removable and once removed they reveal a rather sweet looking setup that includes the main driver, a tweeter and a vent tunnel for bass reflex. Revealing this setup gives the speakers a more industrial look that screams outs studio styling.
The rest of the speaker exteriors are made from wood, a pretty solid wood to say the least. There are two colors available as well. There’s black or there brown. I have the black version and I have to say the set looks rather sleek in this color.
Included with the set is a small wireless remote control. The remote features 12 buttons. It can be used to switch between the various inputs, skip tracks, adjust the volume, play/pause music and enter/leave standby mode. It can’t be used to adjust the bass or treble levels though, these can only be adjusted using the knobs on the side of the right speaker unit.
Setting the Edifier R1280DB Bookshelf speakers up isn’t hard at all. Simply connect the two together using the supplied cable, connect your wired device and you’re good to go. Connecting the set to a phone via Bluetooth is also pretty straightforward. The whole process took me no more than 30 seconds. As usual, if you do struggle, a quick glance at the user guide will provide you with the answers you need.
Using the speakers in Bluetooth mode is very seamless. They work extremely well, especially when connected to a mobile device. Unfortunately, they do lack AptX support, which when supported creates a much better Bluetooth listening experience.
While I do use the speakers a lot in Bluetooth mode, I have them permanently connected to my PC via the RCA cable. Luckily the speaker supports multiple inputs, which means there’s no need to unplug something to listen via Bluetooth, all you have to do is simply use the remote to switch from one input to the other.
The Edifier R1280DB Bookshelf speakers come equipped with 4inch bass drivers and 13mm silk-dome tweeters. This setup provides a rather impressive sound quality, sure it’s nothing special, but it still works well and the sound produced is brilliant. At its highest setting, the bass delivers a powerful punch, while the audio is clear, even at higher volumes, where distortion is simply not a problem.
I have these set up in my front as PC speaker and it’s safe to say they can easily fill the medium-sized room full of sound. Hell, I can hear them all the way up on the third level of my house when the volume is turned up to its loudest.
In conclusion, I have found the Edifier R1280DB Bookshelf speakers to be a refreshing entry into the world of proper speakers, having used only portable speakers for a good few years. They offer a fair amount of input options, a visually pleasing style and audio quality that is simply not achievable with bag sized speakers. At £119.99 a set, they are a tad bit on the expensive side, and in my opinion, a price point between £100 and £110 would be better.
- Multiple input options
- Removable front panels
- Sleek design
- Fantastic audio
- Steep price point at £119.99
- Front panels are rather boring