What We Like
- Decent amount of power for this price range.
- Good quality cabinets with a simple design.
- Relatively transparent performance.
What We Don’t Like
- Somewhat shallow frequency range.
Alesis is one of the staple brands when it comes to affordable studio monitors. Now they’ve raised the bar with their Elevate 5 MKII. These are some of the most attractive monitors you can get under $200.
When it comes to design, you can expect pretty much the average for this price range. In other words, we are looking at a standard black cabinet and more or less featureless black baffle that covers the entire front portion of the speaker.
One of the most defining features of the Alesis Elevate 5 MKII comes in the form of its two front firing ports. Going deeper than pure aesthetics, we see high-density MDF, which is a nice touch that certainly helps with reducing cabinet resonances. Overall, Alesis Elevate 5 MkII is your standard set of black speakers which will fit into any interior and not stand out.
They are neither large nor small, making them a good choice for those who have limited space on their desktop. Since these come with front firing ports, you don’t really have to be all that careful when it comes to positioning them next to a wall.
Feature wise, Alesis Elevate 5 MkII come across as very basic. The core of this setup is the 5“ driver and that 1“ tweeter. Not only are these fairly decent in general, but they are paired with a functional crossover that ensures a certain level of smoothness.
Total power output for Alesis Elevate 5 MkII is limited at 80 Watts or 40 Watts per channel. Compared to most other speakers in this segment, that is above average. Alesis went on to tailor a great baffle for this speaker, including the tweeter waveguide. On top of that, the baffle itself does a lot towards optimizing the image you get.
A quick peek at the back panel reveals a flexible I/O cluster as well as the Bass Boost switch. There are no room acoustic adjustments, but that is generally something that you only see in more expensive speakers.
In terms of performance, Alesis Elevate 5 MkII delivers a relatively flat performance. It’s not as transparent as we would want it to be, however it does well when its price is taken into consideration. One cool thing about this speaker is the fact that you have that Bass Boost feature.
In essence, when you get tired of transparent sound and you want to enjoy that sweet biased image, just pop that switch and you will instantly get a better response in the lower end. Speaking of which, even though Alesis Elevate 5 MkII packs a rather decent 5“ driver, it doesn’t really dig too deep in the lower portions of the frequency range.
We are talking 50 Hz, which is not the best we’ve seen a 5-inch driver do. Is this a deal breaker? Absolutely not, nor is it all that important for what these speakers were designed to do. However, if you’re expecting thumping bass, you won’t find it here.
Overall, Alesis did a great job at giving us a capable yet versatile set of studio monitors at a great price. Alesis Elevate 5 MkII speakers come with some quirks, but ultimately they’re among the best choices under $200 right now.