Want big sound but have little space? Check out some my favorite compact audio systems. No cheap boomboxes here, just great sound and flexibility. These units are perfect for the office, bedroom, apartment, or recreation room.
1. Samsung DA-E751 Vacuum Tube-Equipped Audio Dock
2. Voice Clarifying TV Speaker
Here is one of the products that have me saying "Why did I think of that?". The Voice Clarifying Speaker from Hammacher Schlemmer is specially designed to emphasize frequencies generally associated with the human voice. The system is very easy to set up. Just connect the provided wireless transmitter to a TV that is equipped with either analog or digital optical output connections, then place the TV speaker near your seating location (within 50 feet of the transmitter - line of sight), synch them up, and you are set to go.
This is a great product for those that are hard-of-hearing, or just have trouble hearing dialog over music and sound effects on TV programs or DVDs. The TV speaker even has two 3.5mm headphone connection outputs for late night private listening.
3. Onkyo CS-355 Colibrino Bluetooth Mini-SystemThe Onkyo CS-355 is a compact system featuring a stylish exterior finish (you have a choice of red, white, or black). Inside the main unit there is a high current 15 WPC amplifier (measured at 1khz @ 6 ohms), 2-Way bass reflex loudspeakers featuring 3-inch midrange/woofer drivers and 3/4-inch tweeters, slot loading CD player, AM/FM Radio Tuner, and subwoofer preamp output. The Onkyo CS-355 also features a convenient front panel USB port for connecting iOS devices (iPod, iPhone, iPad) and flash drives.
Additional features that make the CS-355 more flexible and easy-to-use are active bass control, which increases bass output at lower volume, line input for connection of analog audio sources, a headphone output that is great for late night or private listening, and a wireless remote control.
The big added bonus is that the CS-355 also includes wireless Bluetooth, which allows you to stream music wirelessly from a compatible smartphone or portable audio player to the system.
This system may be small but delivers great sound for home or office.
4. Yamaha MCR-042 Micro Component SystemThe MCR-042 is a compact system that consists of a CD Receiver and detachable bass reflex designed compact speakers with 4-inch drivers. The CD transport is compatible with CD/CR-R/RWs as well as WMA and MP3 discs, while its USB port can access WMA or MP3 audio files from flash drives. Other features include a 30-channel preset AM and FM tuners, integrated iPod Dock, Aux input for analog audio sources, and wireless remote control. There is also a free downlable app that allows a compatible iOS device to control the audio and alarm clock functions. The MCR-042 comes in ten color choices (Dary Gray, Purple, Yellow, Light Brown, White, Pink, Black, Red, Green, and Orange).
5. Panasonic SC-HC57 Micro Hi-Fi SystemPanasonic has always done well with their compact audio products and the SC-HC57is no exception. For $199 you get a compact audio system that can be table or wall mounted, with a single tray CD player (CDR/RW playback), FM tuner with 30 FM presets, iPod/iPhone connectivity via onboard dock or Airplay, and wireless remote control. A great added bonus is that this system also access internet radio stations if you have the vTuner for Panasonic app installed on your iPhone or iPod Touch. Another interesting feature is that the speakers are made out of bamboo. This a great little system that is both stylish and sounds good.
6. Yamaha MCR-232 Mini CD/iPod SystemThe MCR-232 is a compact system that consists of a CD Receiver (20wpc) and Two compact two-way Bass Reflex speakers. In addition, the CD transport is compatible with CD/CR-R/RWs as well as WMA and MP3 discs, while its USB port can access audio files from connected flash drives, and an iPad. Other features include, a 30-channel preset AM/FM tuner, integrated iPod Dock, and remote control. This system also features a subwoofer line output for connecting an external powered subwoofer of your choice. The MCR-232 also provides a headphone output, plus an additional analog audio input for connecting other analog audio devices, such as an audio cassette deck. The Yamaha MCR-232 provides great music listening performance in a small package.
7. Denon D-M39S CD/FM/iPod Micro SystemHere is a compact audio system that really packs a punch. The Denon D-M39 features a separate mini-size CD player and Receiver, combined with newly designed compact efficient 2-way loudspeakers. In addition, the D-M39 provides for an optional external subwoofer, via a dedicated subwoofer pre-out connection. The amplifier of the D-M39 delivers 30wpc (at 6ohms/1 KHz) and the CD player is compatible with both CD-R/CD-RW/MP3 and WMA discs. Other practical features include an FM tuner, and iPod/iPhone connectivity via USB. The D-M389 has extra analog audio inputs. The D-M39 even has an subwoofer preamp output. This system is targeted for office use, but makes a great bedroom or dorm system as well.
8. Chestnut Hill Sound - GEORGE Compact Audio System
GEORGE is a unique combination product that blends a compact audio system with full iPod connectivity and control. In addition to providing great room-filling sound from your iPod, GEORGE also features a built-in AM/FM radio and an auxiliary input for the connection of a CD or Cassette player.
Adding to its flexibility is the inclusion of the detachable front control panel, which also doubles as the GEORGE's wireless remote control. Some drawbacks, however, are the large external power supply, inconvenient subwoofer control, no incorporation of XM or Sirius Satellite Radio connectivity, and a high price tag.
Review - Manufacturer's Site