What We Like
What We Don't Like
Edifier R1280T perhaps won’t win any audiophile’s heart, but no one can deny the versatility of these speakers. Considering their cheap price, Edifier R1280T are still one of the most attractive speakers you can get for $100.
Edifier took a fairly simple route when they designed the R1280T. The idea was to make something that was neutral in appearance, but still somewhat attractive. Coincidentally, this type of approach gave them some room to save on production costs. If you look at these speakers, you will notice that only the sides are made of MDF. The central portion that is sandwiched between them is actually plastic.
With that said, the quality of plastics used are more than satisfactory. The entire speaker feels very solid, which is important considering that loose speaker cabs are one of the worst things you can deal with. The front grille is there and is gray just like the plastics on the cabinet. Overall, Edifier R1280T will easily fit into whatever environment you put them in. As a matter of fact, it is quite refreshing to see an affordable bookshelf speaker that isn’t all black.
What is interesting about R1280T is the layout of the front panel. Edifier strayed away from the usual solutions by offsetting the tweeter to the side. This was done to make room for the front firing port, which increases the versatility of the speaker. When it comes to transducers, you are looking at a 4″ inch full range driver paired with a modest .50″ silk dome tweeter.
The latter is housed in a protective enclosure that also acts as a waveguide. These are powered speakers, which makes them useful in just about any application you can think of. You are looking at 42 Watts RMS combined output, meaning that each speaker cabinet is capable of 21 Watts RMS on its own.
With that said, the cables you get with the speakers really need to be replaced right out of the box. There were instances where users mistook the interference from the cables as defective speakers.
Performance wise, Edifier R1280T offers a rather versatile spectrum. Trebles are fairly clear and defined thanks to that snappy tweeter, while the mids sound full and rich. However, once you try to reach bottom limits of the frequency range, you will run into some issues. The lower end is sluggish but powerful for a 4″ full range driver. There is not that much definition to work with, but you will move some air. As long as you are looking for that thump of the bass, you won’t have to worry.
The trouble starts when you demand definition in your bass section. However, considering the price and overall performance of these speakers, we can’t really complain too much. When it comes to volume, Edifier R1280T packs enough of a punch for both near field and other uses. Those 42 Watts RMS combined are definitely a limiting factor in a sense that you will get best results in small rooms. Again, nothing too surprising.
If you are looking for decent powered bookshelf speakers in this price range, Edifier R1280T are a fairly well-balanced choice. They offer acceptable power output, pretty decent aesthetics, and most importantly, good color of sound.