Do Slim Speakers Sound Bad?
These days, if you can even afford a home or apartment of your own, you’ll probably end up with space being a premium. You’d love to have those massive speakers (and even more massive subwoofers), but you simply can’t fit them in your tiny room! This has you looking at speakers more for their size than anything else. You’ve got to be able to get them in your room first! This has you concerned about the sound quality of smaller speakers. Do slim speakers sound bad in comparison to larger speakers? Let’s discuss!
Something is Better Than Nothing
Before we begin, it’s important to note that having a speaker is better than not having one. You will find naysayers out there who will suggest that buying anything other than what they recommend is throwing money away and will sound horrible.
That’s just not true.
If you are going from your TV speakers (or a soundbar) to dedicated speakers, slim speakers will sound anything but bad. Better separation, likely better sound quality, and real surround sound will be a definite improvement. If you really only have space for small, slim speakers, they aren’t going to sound bad.
Slim Speakers are a Compromise
From a purely objective point of view, however, slim speakers are a compromise. They have reduced internal cabinet volume (because of their size). This means they can’t play as low (bass requires a larger cabinet) or as loud (slim speakers can accommodate larger drivers with large excursions. Put those two things together and you get a speaker that doesn’t have as flat a frequency response.
This means some of the notes you should be hearing may be either reduced in volume or completely missing. It also means that you’ll likely have to cross your subwoofer over much higher in order to boost the bass response of the slim speakers.
Again, Having Speakers is Preferable to Not Having Speakers
Neither of these should be dealbreakers for those who literally don’t have the space for larger speakers. It’s crazy to me to think that someone would suggest not buying anything over any sort of comprise. Would they suggest walking the 25 miles to work over getting a car without AC? I agree that AC is important (I live in Florida), but surely a car without AC is better than no car?
If you were to place slim speakers next to similarly priced full-sized speakers, you’d probably be able to hear that the slim speakers sound different (you might even describe them as “bad” in comparison). But would you say the same if you were to compare the same slim speakers to the TV speakers (or a cheap soundbar)? Probably not. If you really only have space for slim speakers, and you have no plans of moving or upgrading in the near future, then slim speakers are better than no speakers.