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The best computer speakers in 2022: Boost your desktop sound

best computer speakers Bose Companion 2 Series III connected to laptop
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Adding one of our best computer speakers will bring big improvements to the sound experience of the built-in speakers from your desktop PC or laptop. As many of us continue to juggle a working hybrid between the workplace and home office, investing in a better desktop setup can help improve the working from home experience.  

But it's not all about work, and what criteria defines “best” for you may depend on your needs. For instance, PC gamers might want something that heightens the atmosphere of their favorite first-person shooter. Music lovers may require a system that pumps out dynamic, well-balanced sound to enjoy every detail of a recording. 

In much the same way as the best soundbars improve on the audio output from built-in TV speakers, even an affordable set of desktop speakers will likely outperform the tiny little speakers built in to a laptop or monitor screen. 

The computer speakers in this list each have a built-in amplifier with the power output rated in watts (W). In this list, we assembled the best computer speakers based on use, performance and pricing. All produce a better-sounding audio experience whether you're working, listening, viewing or gaming. 

Scroll down to see which computer speaker models are worth picking up. Alternatively, if headphones are more your thing then you may be interested in our best headsets and headphones for working from home.  

If you're thinking of upgrading your home office, then don't forget to check out our pick of the best Windows laptops, or get great audio for your online calls and recordings with the pick of the best microphones and best USB microphones

You may also be interested in the best headphones with a mic for voice and video calls, or turn a video game into a fully immersive experience with one of the best gaming headsets for PC and consoles.

More: Marshall just unveiled next-gen Woburn, Stanmore, and Acton Bluetooth speakers.  

Top 3 best computer speakers in 2022

Best overall: Bose Companion 2 Series III  
If you value excellent sound and are looking to bring better audio to your desk, the Bose Companion 2 Series III are the best choice for most people. Though there are computer speakers with more features, few other speakers sound as good as these. You’ll pay a bit of a premium, but that’s the Bose way. 

Best value: Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX
If you’re looking for the best computer speakers with a subwoofer, the Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX should be near the top of your list. The speakers have been around since 2001 and deliver excellent overall sound and impressive bass. It lacks Bluetooth, but you’ll be hard pressed to find better computer speakers at this price. 

Best for style: Creative Pebble V3
If you’re looking for affordable computer speakers that don’t take up much space on your desk, Creative Pebble V3 Minimalistic 2.0 USB-C Speakers with Bluetooth should be near the top of your list. These small speakers lack a bit of bass, but the overall sound is very good — especially with vocals. And they look pretty cool, too.  

What are the best computer speakers?

Based on its sound delivery and MSRP, the Bose Companion 2 Series III makes the most compelling argument for the best computer speaker package overall. Not only does it take up very little surface space, but this dual-speaker system is powerful and produces highly detailed sound that serves music, video, and games equally well. You can find cheaper two-speaker kits out there, but none are as well-rounded as the Bose.

Best value goes to the Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX. This 2.1 package comes bundled with a large subwoofer and a pair of satellite speakers that produce an impressively a wide soundscape. They're competitively priced, but not having Bluetooth could be a deal-breaker for some.

The Creative Pebble V3 may be small speakers but they can produce a big sound and come with plenty of ways to connect to your computer or other audio source, including USB-C and Bluetooth. They’re reasonably priced, at about $40, and look pretty cool, too.  

The best computer speakers you can buy

Bose Companion 2 Series III connected to laotop

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best desktop multimedia speakers overall

Specifications

Type of system: 2.0 (full-range stereo speakers)
Inputs: 2 x 3.5mm
Headphone jack socket: Yes
Size: 7.5 x 5.9 x 3.1 inches
Power output: Not stated

Reasons to buy

+
Powerful and well balanced stereo sound  
+
Impressive bass output
+
Compact speaker design with useful front panel volume control 

Reasons to avoid

-
No treble and bass controls
-
No Bluetooth support
-
No USB port

The Companion 2 Series III represents the best desktop speakers for most people. The 7.5 x 5.9 x 3.1-inch satellites don't take up much space on your desk, but they create a big, full sound. The price won't break the bank, and it's worth the premium over cheaper units. Remember, too, that you're also paying for the brand name, and Bose generally doesn't come cheap. It produces more bass than speakers twice the size, and with robust vocals and pleasing treble, it delivers very good sound overall.

The simple and elegant design features a single volume knob on the right speaker, along with a headphone jack so you don't have to disconnect the speakers to listen privately. These speakers don't give you any way to adjust the bass or treble, but with the well-balanced sound, you likely won't miss that feature.

Read our full Bose Companion 2 Series III review.

Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX speakers connected to computerbest value awards badge

(Image credit: Klipsch)
Best speaker and subwoofer package for immersive multimedia

Specifications

Type of system: 2.1 (stereo speakers with subwoofer)
Inputs: 3.5mm
Headphone jack socket: Yes
Size: Satellites: 8.5 x 5.7 x 4.2 inches; Subwoofer: 10.2 x 9.8 x 9.5 inches
Power output : 2 x 15W

Reasons to buy

+
Impressive sub-bass performance with level control
+
Great clarity with music vocals   
+
Wide stereo soundstage
+
THX certified for high-quality audio experience 

Reasons to avoid

-
No Bluetooth support
-
Finding space for the subwoofer may prove tricky

If you’re in the market for computer speakers that come bundled with a subwoofer, the Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX is quite a bargain. Audio quality is impressive with a wide soundscape that allows you to hear subtle nuances in songs. Vocals, instruments, and sound effects are detailed, which benefits listeners when indulging in movies and video games. Each satellite sits attractively on the side your desktop and laptop as well.

Not having Bluetooth can be a deal-breaker for some. Also, figuring out where to place the large subwoofer may present challenges for those with very little space to work with. However, if you have the extra room to store it, the ProMedia 2.1 will reward you with robust bass.

Read our full Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX Certified Computer Speaker review.

The Creative Pebble V3 set up next to each other

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best computer speakers for style and value

Specifications

Type of system: 2.0 (stereo speakers)
Inputs: USB-C port; 3.5mm jack; Bluetooth
Headphone jack socket: No
Size: 4.8 x 4.7 x 4.6 inches
Power output: 16W

Reasons to buy

+
Impressive sound performance
+
Space-saving design
+
Good selection of connectivity options
+
Price 

Reasons to avoid

-
Limited bass output
-
No headphone jack socket

Building out your desktop setup can get expensive, especially for those who are working from home regularly. The Creative Pebble V3 proves you don’t have to spend crazy money to snag a pair of serviceable and super-affordable computer speakers. Despite its compact size, the Pebble V3 produces loud and crisp sound, putting what comes out of your laptop speakers to shame. The orb-inspired design is attractive and takes up very little space, plus we appreciate all the hardware (e.g., 2.25-inch driver, passive bass radiator) and inputs (e.g., 3.5 mm port, USB-C) Creative managed to squeeze in. 

There isn’t much bass coming out of the driver, which means lows can lack depth on contemporary songs. A headphone output would have also been appreciated to enjoy music privately, but the price point makes the Pebble V3 incredible value.

Read our full Creative Pebble V3 review.

The Logitech G560 as part of a desktop setup

(Image credit: Logitech)
The best computer speakers with big sound for gamer

Specifications

Type of system: 2.1 (stereo satellites with subwoofer)
Inputs: USB port; 3.5mm jack; Bluetooth
Headphone jack socket: Yes
Size: Satellites: 5.8 x 6.5 x 4.8 inches; Subwoofer: 15.9 x 10.3 x 8.15 inches
Power output: 120W (total RMS)

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent overall sound 
+
Effective EQ and surround modes  
+
Great bass performance 
+
Impressive lighting options

Reasons to avoid

-
Bass levels difficult to control for nighttime gaming
-
Lighting software can be finicky
-
Finding space for the large subwoofer may prove tricky

The Logitech G560 are the best computer speakers for serious gamers. The G560 produces robust sound, whether you're playing a game or listening to music, and the subwoofer really adds to the experience. If you like to play loud, this system is a great fit for you. It also features a sophisticated lighting system comprising four distinct zones with bright, colorful LEDs, which are fun but can be distracting. The included software is integral; you use it to configure the lights, activate surround sound and even create profiles for specific games.

One helpful feature of the G560 is its Bluetooth compatibility, which lets you funnel in your own music from a smartphone. This means that you can play pretty much anything on these speakers, and you can hand off control from person to person easily. If you need something powerful for an impromptu dance party, the G560 will work in a pinch, and even provide its own light show to go along with the proceedings.

Read our full Logitech G560 review.
  

How to choose the best computer speakers for you

There are three things to consider when choosing the best PC speakers for your setup: sound quality, extra features and price.

Cheaper, less elaborate systems can sometimes offer decent sound quality, but the sound output is often not particularly well nuanced, and the maximum volume is sometimes not loud enough to fill your listening space or impactful enough for your activity. More elaborate systems tend to offer richer treble, deeper bass and more substantial vocals. A great-sounding pair of speakers should be nicely balanced across the frequency range.

Extra features tend to come standard in more expensive speakers, but even cheaper models can have them. The most common extra feature is discrete bass/treble controls, but you can also have remote controls, wireless functionality and RGB lighting. None of these things is strictly necessary, but some can make your life a lot easier, especially if you're looking to turn your computer into an audio powerhouse.

How we test the best computer speakers

To an extent, testing to find the best computer speakers isn’t that different to testing one of the best Bluetooth speakers or even a soundbar. We’re looking for high audio quality across a range of uses, from making sure voices are clear in video calls to the speakers’ music, movie and gaming performance. We’ll play a variety of different media, including multiple musical genres, to identify any sonic strengths and weaknesses.

We also examine how easy it is to set up a pair (or multi-speaker set) of computer speakers, but generally you shouldn’t need any special knowledge to get them up and running.

Generally, we try to spend a few days using each speaker set on a desktop/home office setup, to fully replicate the conditions in which you’d use them yourself.

Once our testing is complete, we rate the best computer speakers based on our five-point system (1 = worst, 5 = best). Products that hit nearly every mark are awarded an Editor's Choice badge.

Be sure to check out all of our guides to help you study or work from home:

Best desk lamps | Best pens | Best office chairs | Best college laptop | Best laptop bags | Best webcams | Best all-in-one printers | Best Chromebooks for kids

As a former editor of the U.K.'s Hi-Fi Choice magazine, Lee is passionate about all kinds of audio tech and has been providing sound advice to enable consumers to make informed buying decisions since he joined Which? magazine as a product tester in the 1990s. Lee covers all things audio for Tom's Guide, including headphones, wireless speakers and soundbars and loves to connect and share the mindfulness benefits that listening to music in the very best quality can bring.

With contributions from
  • cirdecus
    So how are the Logitech Z906 and Klipsch 2.1 ProMedia speakers not on this list?
    Reply
  • Miss Noma
    I have the Bose Companion2 Series 3 and I agree they are a great buy. They have a classic and unobtrusive appearance and sound very good. The rotary volume knob is an absolute essential and works well. Also don't take up much desk space. Good value for money IMO.
    Reply