In Review

Audioengine HD6 Powered Bookshelf Speakers

5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars - 'Outstanding - Starkie!'
- Built-in Class A/B monoblock power amplifiers
- Inputs include analog (RCA and mini-jack), optical and Advanced Bluetooth aptX
- Audiophile-grade components
- Furniture finishes and magnetic grilles
- Solid aluminum remote control
Price: $749 (USD)
Top notch build quality. Plenty of connection options. Included remote. Stellar sound performance.
Might be too pricey for some.
"Outstanding - Starkie!"
Audioengine knocks it out of the park.
Review by Clinton Stark

Finally, world class audio! For the longest time I relied on the internal speaker on my monitor. Pretty weak. I’m not sure why I didn’t upgrade eons ago. I’ve been cutting videos for Stark Insider at my workstation for about 10 years, and until 2015 I was relying on tinny audio coming out of crappy monitor speakers. Though, occasionally, I would use my Sony MDR-V6 for critical listening and dialing in the final audio mix for a video.

Thankfully, that all changed.

Audioengine sent me a pair of their gorgeous looking HD6 wireless speakers. In the above photo you can see them flanking my three-screen editing system.

As far as computer speakers go, they’re a bit pricey at $749 (USD) for a pair. But, audiophiles and home theater enthusiasts will see it differently, and possibly consider them a bargain. If, like me, you sit for hours and days at a time editing videos, then you owe it to yourself — and your viewers! — to invest in something like these HD6s.

There’s a lot to like here.

First, there’s connections aplenty: wireless Bluetooth (with aptX), analog/RCA inputs and outputs (do people still use them… and why hasn’t Apple somehome managed to kill them too?!), an optical/SPDIF input, a 3.5mm input, and a speaker terminals to connect the right speaker.

The left speaker is powered, and the right passive. Speaker grills are removable. And a remote is included (which I don’t use). A white light on the front left speaker indicates power, and opposite is an infinite volume button (there’s no physical hard stop).

Finish is beautiful. I was sent the walnut edition. I suspect it’s likely a veneer MDF of some sort, but it looks very nice and the overall build quality feels, I’d say, German.

How times change. I used to like all my audio gear in good old universal black. Now, for some reason, I find myself partial to wood finishes (but definitely no in a car!). Walnut is a nice break from all the black gadgets and monitors surrounding me.

Bluetooth works great, as you’d expect these days from a modern wireless system. But, since these speakers sit full-time on my desk, I connect them to my Windows PC using the reliable, high quality optical input. Displayports. SPDIFs. Good times.

Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review

Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review

Most importantly, the sound.

In a word: tremendous.

Bass is deep and full, without that dreaded mushy thumping or egregious distortion. Mids are clean, and the highs crisp. For a relatively small pair of bookshelf spears, you get some serious kick. It probably helps that the monoblock power amplifiers are Class A/B. I’m not an audiophile so I can’t speak to the internals, or use fancy jargon to describe the listening experience. But I do listen to classical music from time to time on my headphones and on a Sonos, and I do appreciate quality fidelity. I can say that the Audioengine HD6 speakers deliver on that front in spades. There’s no going back.

I’m happy as punch with the performance of the Audioengine HD6 speakers. I’ve been editing with them for several months now, and can hear so much more detail than I could with other PC speaker systems I tried. Stereo separation is fantastic. And the tonality is pleasing and beautifully balanced. When I finish cutting a video I still give it listen on an iPad, iPhone, Android phone and laptop, because I know many will be watching on mobile devices, so it’s imperative the mix sound decent for those as well.

If your budget is under $1,000 (USD) and you need a pair of versatile speakers that don’t compromise on sound, I’d highly recommend you audition the Audioengine HD6 speakers. Black, Cherry, or (my favorite) Walnut. Choice is yours. Fortunately, sound performance across the three versions is the same. Which is to say, superb.


Audioengine HD6 Powered Bookshelf Speakers (Black, Cherry, or Walnut)

Audioengine HD6 Powered Bookshelf Speakers Review

Stark Insider Edit Suite - The Neon Demon (of course!)

Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review Audioengine HD6 Powered Speakers Walnut - review

Clinton Stark
Clinton shoots videos for Stark Insider. San Francisco Bay Area arts, Ingmar Bergman and French New Wave, and chasing the perfect home espresso shot 25 seconds at a time (and failing). Peloton: ClintTheMint. Camera: Video Gear