The Best Floor Standing Speakers 2020: Q Acoustics, Pioneer, Klipsch - Rolling Stone
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The Best Floor Standing Speakers For Home Theaters

Big rooms deserve speakers that deliver clear, booming sound

Q Acoustics 3050i Lifestyle Image

Q Acoustics

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If you have enough space, no style of speaker will give you a fuller range of sound than a pair of tall, floor standing ones. They’re the only speakers you’ll need for a 2.0 stereo system, and an essential part of a 5.1, 7.1, or Dolby Atmos surround sound setup.

We’ve done research, and collected the best tall floor standing speakers for your home theater. Whether you’re building your first system, or upgrading the one you’ve had for the first time in years, our recommendations have you covered. Keep in mind that you’ll need a stereo receiver to power them, and multiple sets if you’re building a surround sound system.

The Best Tall Floor Standing Speakers You Can Get

There are many factors to consider when choosing the right tall floor standing speakers for you; below are the most important ones, which we considered while we were researching this list.

Size: Our speaker recommendations are around three feet tall, which is big enough to create room filling sound without requiring a huge space.

Wired: All of the speakers in this guide are wired; wireless speakers are great, but they’re not appropriate in this case.

Driver Size: Drivers are the part of a speaker responsible for producing sound. Generally speaking, the larger the driver, the louder and clearer the sound (materials and placement matter a lot too). Every speaker we’ve chosen has big drivers for this reason.

Number of Drivers: There are two main types of speaker drivers: Woofers, which handle bass and midrange frequencies, and tweeters, which are better at handling treble frequencies. Our tall floors tanding speaker picks have at least three drivers to deliver better balanced sound at any volume level.

1. Pioneer SP-FS52

Pioneer SP FFS52

Amazon

This pair of Pioneer speakers designed by industry veteran Andrew Jones has helped set the standard for entry-level audio gear.

The SP-FS52s are 35.2 inches tall, which is slightly lower than our three-feet size requirement, but close enough that we’re rounding up. Pioneer actually increased the speaker’s height by three inches over the previous generation to make its drivers closer to ear level.

This speaker has three 5.25 inch woofers, and a one inch tweeter. To ensure each driver performs best, Pioneer engineered an eight- component crossover, which splits the audio signal more accurately from your receiver to the woofers and tweeter. The end result should be smoother, better balanced sound.

Pioneer also set the drivers in a curved cabinet to reduce interference, made the tweeter more power efficient, and placed an oversized magnet behind the woofer to improve bass accuracy. These design choices are typically found in high end speakers, so it’s refreshing to see them featured in a more consumer focused speaker.

One word of caution: Pioneer offers the SP-FS52 as a single speaker, so you’ll need to get two if you want a stereo pair. This is the only speaker in our guide that’s not available in a pair.

If you want a great floor standing speaker in an unassuming package, this is the right choice. Just remember to get two of them.

2. Klipsch R-26FA

Klipsch R-26FA

Klipsch

If you care deeply about surround sound, Kipsch’s R-26FAs will offer a far better experience than traditional floor standing speakers.

This speaker pair is 39 inches tall and has six drivers, which is the most out of any floor standers we recommend. Three of the drivers: A pair of 6.5 inch woofers and a one inch tweeter, are located on the front. The other three: a pair of 5.25 inch woofers and a one inch tweeter, are located on top of the speaker, and face upward.

The speaker placement may seem a little odd at first, but they’re designed to work with Dolby Atmos, a new surround sound technology that offers a way more immersive experience than traditional 5.1 and 7.1 systems. In a Dolby Atmos mix, sound is directed toward you and your ceiling, where it bounces off the top of your room and back down at you. The result is a surround sound experience where you can hear each element of your music, TV shows, and movies in vertical space.

This technology is just starting to roll out, but getting these speakers (or a Klipsch’s full Dolby Atmos speaker bundle) will prepare you. If you don’t care about Atmos (yet), the R-26FA will still work extremely well in a stereo or traditional surround sound setup.

Klipsch’s R-26FAs are among the first speakers designed with the next level of surround sound in mind, and if you’re building a cutting-edge home theater system, they’re the pair to get.

3. Q Acoustics 3050i

Q Acoustics 3050i

Amazon

I’ve tried several Q Acoustics speakers (including the bookshelf counterpart to these floor standers), and have always come away impressed.

The company has gone the extra mile to pack its 3050i floor standing speakers with technology and a physical design that work together to improve sound quality. At 40.2 inches, the 3050is are the tallest speakers in our guide, and they feature a pair of 6.5 inch woofers, and a .87 inch tweeter.

Starting at the bottom, each speaker is balanced on four metal posts instead of a stand, which is done to reduce distortion from vibrations. When you’re listening to a song at high volumes, or a track with heavy bass, the speakers won’t rattle, which can impact sound quality.

The inside of each cabinet has been designed with an (Helmoltz Pressure Equalizer) a technology developed by Q Acoustics to reduce unwanted frequency spikes that can occur when listening to music at higher volumes.

The 3050is cabinet enclosures (the areas around the drivers) use another Q Acoustics technology called PTP (Point To Point) to ensure they stays rigid. This allows the drivers to focus their audio directly toward you for a more accurate sound stage. The result of using both of these technologies is improving the speaker’s sound using physics.

Each of the 3050i’s drivers are made out of nine or more individual pieces using materials like steel, silicon, heat-resistant aramid fiber, and fabric. Again, the attention to detail here will lead to better sound in a pair of speakers with the standard amount of drivers, and a normal size.

Finally, Q Acoustics made sure its speakers looked really good. Their minimalist style, and different colorways (the wood-like walnut is shown above, but they’re also available in white, black, and slate), mean you’ll find a pair that fit into any environment. If you’re sweating all the details while building your stereo system, you should consider getting speakers from a company who sweated the details designing them.

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