The best floor standing speakers

The best floor standing speakers for hi-fi and TV home entertainment systems

The best floorstanding speakers

by William Lobley |

Just as good bookshelf speakers can completely alter your perception of good audio, floor-standing speakers can show you what happens to quality audio when it has more room to breathe. That is, so long as you pick up an excellent pair of floor speakers.

To help you make sure that your audio is truly getting an upgrade, we’ve rounded up the best floor standing speakers down below. Read on to find out which models made the cut.

Why choose floor standing speakers?

If you’ve got a decent set of bookshelf speakers for your record player, or a soundbar for your TV, you might be wondering why floors peakers are worth your time. The answer, plain and simply, is that a good pair of floor speakers sounds superior to the alternatives.

The reason for this is all down to physics. The larger bodies of the speakers allow for bigger and better audio drivers. This means that frequencies can be given more attention and clarity, improving the overall quality of the audio. It’s also down to physics that the larger speaker cabinets are better at handling sound - the result is audio that sounds more expansive and full, with a much-improved bass representation.

What can you use floor standing speakers for?

There are two common applications of floor standing speakers. The first is for a hi-fi setup, with stereos and record players being connected up for a seriously pleasing musical experience. The second application is as part of a home entertainment system, with each floor-standing speaker standing on each side of a TV. Of course, if you’re good at wiring, there’s nothing to say that your new floor-standing speakers can’t do both.

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What do I need to use floor standing speakers?

Unlike soundbars or many bookshelf speakers, the best floor standing speakers aren't powered - they don’t have a built-in amplifier and therefore need to receive power from an external source. This external source is an amplifier - there are plenty of options available on the market, and though they can seem a little daunting to the uninitiated, they are simple to set up. If you'd like to learn more about amplifiers, check out this video from Akio TV, which breaks down amplifier basics (it’s a tad old school by today’s standards, but the theory is still sound). You can even make your speaker wireless by integrating one of the best Bluetooth receivers.

Can I use floor standing speakers alongside other speakers?

While floor standing speakers can produce a lovely racket all by themselves, they can also be adopted into a wider surround sound system, with satellite speakers and subwoofers. It’s up to you, however, to make sure that an amplifier is up to the task.

The best floor standing speakers 2022

Dali Oberon 5

The Dali Oberon 5 is a remarkable floor-standing speaker - but then would we expect anything less from the Danish audio brand? The Oberon 5 carry 5.25-inch reinforced woofers and a 29mm tweeter with a lightweight membrane, all tucked away inside a braced MDF construction. The resulting audio is satisfying, to say the least. The bass has a real weight to it, while the highs sing warmly. The volume is another area of overperformance, with the smart construction and considered elements pushing out audio that you’d typically expect from much bigger units.

Drivers: 5.25-inch bass , 5.25-inch mid, 1.1-inch tweeter (soft)

Sensitivity: 108dB

Impedance: 6ohm

Frequency Response: 39Hz - 26kHz

Q Acoustics 3050i

With a decidedly mature and contemporary look, the 3050i certainly stand apart from much of the competition. While aesthetically they are more likely to fit into a modern entertainment setup, the sound makes sure that they stand out. The highs are treated with balance via the tweeter driver. This tweeter is positioned between the two mid and bass drivers, which also deliver powerful and precise performances. They manage to straddle that difficult line between being high energy and tasteful - a great set of floor speakers, without a doubt. To add some real bark to the bottom end, consider adding the Q Acoustics 3060s Active Subwoofer.

Drivers: 6.5-inch bass , 6.5-inch mid, 1 inch tweeter (soft)

Sensitivity: 92dB

Impedance: 6ohm

Frequency Response: 44Hz - 22kHz

Wharfedale Diamond 12.3

We’re not making your choice any easier. The Wharfedale Diamond 12.3, too, are a remarkable set of floor speakers. In addition to their tasty dark wood vintage vibe, the speaker arrangement carried is phenomenally good at providing balance and energy to both TV and Hi-Fi audio. The secret behind its success isn't a secret at all - it's the three speakers it carries. The 1-inch provide deliciously bright and smooth highs while dual 5-inch KlarityTM drivers take care of the blanched and impactful mids and bass. The KlarityTM drivers are so-called because they use blended materials that keep the cone light and sturdy, improving clarity and negating distortion.

Drivers: 5-inch bass (PP), 5-inch mid (PP), 1-inch tweeter (textile)

Sensitivity: 89dB

Impedance: 8ohms

Frequency Response: 45Hz - 20kHz

Yamaha NSF51

When buying a floor speaker, it’s very easy to get drawn in by flashy premium options. However, many of us don’t have the funds for such luxuries. In such cases, it’s best to focus on an option that delivers fully on the basics - good quality and loud audio. This is why the Yamaha NSF51 are featuring on our list. The speakers have a frequency response of 43Hz to 26kHz and carry a two-way reflex bass. They have a robust construction that lends a rich and clear timbre to audio from TV or stereo. For anyone taking their first steps into the world of floor standing speakers, these are a great budget choice.

Drivers: 6.5-inch bass, 6.5-inch mid, 1-inch tweeter (soft)

Sensitivity: 89dB

Impedance: 6ohm

Frequency Response: 43Hz - 26kHz

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Wharfedale Evo 4.4

If you've got the cash to splash, the Wharfedale Evo 4.4 is a seriously compelling option. Grown out of the extensive research and development that produced the ELYSIAN flagship loudspeakers, the Evo 4.4's build helps to integrate the driver output with the room acoustics for efficient and accurate high-frequency sound. The Air Motion Transformer (AMT) treble unit utilises a radically different way of moving air compared to the conventional dome tweeter, producing low distortion and wonderful musical detail, whilst the midrange is fast and responsive to the dynamics of the music fed to it.

Drivers: 6.5-inch bass, 2-inch mid-range, and 30 x 60mm AMT treble

Sensitivity: 89dB

Impedance: 4.3-8ohm

Frequency Response: 44Hz - 22kHz

William Lobley is a Deputy Editor and reviewer for WhatsTheBest, specialising in technology, gaming and outdoors. He also writes for Empire Online.

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