AudioEngine A2: Little Big Speakers

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Audioengine products are sold through an extensive network of online and brick-and-mortar stores throughout most of the world. We received our sample directly from Audioengine. It was double-boxed, the external one being an ordinary plain brown carton, and the internal one being a bit more colorful.

The retail box features alarmingly corny graphics.

Things look more promising inside the box.

There were audio cables in one cloth pouch, an AC/DC adpter in the other.

The speakers were also in soft cloth pouches.
The slot below the bass driver is a vent for the cabinet.

The speakers themselves are far more impressive than the cartons. The hefty weight, smooth contouring of the holes for the drivers, the look of the drivers themselves, and details of the back panel — they all speak of great attention to detail, of a product that's been carefully designed and manufactured.

The bass driver's woven kevlar fiber cone provides high stiffness while the dome tweeter's silk has long been a favored choice for natural damping.

The left speaker contains the amplifier electronics. The back panel sports both phono socket and 1/8" mini stereo jack inputs, a volume knob with built in power switch, socket for DC power and 5-way binding post outputs for the right speaker. The right speaker back panel has only one set of 5-way binding post inputs. A thin, dense foam pad on the bottom keeps it from sliding around on the surface upon which the speaker is placed.

The auto-ranging input AC/DC adapter is rated to deliver up to 1.8A at 17.5V or 31.5W power. Power supplies in audio technology are considered far more critical than in computers. Chances are high that audiophiles could find better performing alternatives to improve the performance of these speakers — if they haven't already.

The speakers all hooked up, plugged in and ready to go. The mini stereo plug is in use here, hooked up first to an Apple iPod with some 9,000 tunes to choose from.

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