How to Buy a Used Set of Bookshelf or Wall Mounted Speakers

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How to Buy a Used Set of Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

Buying a used set of bookshelf speakers or wall mounted speakers enables shoppers to save money and potentially purchase a higher quality set of speakers than they could otherwise afford. Buyers should consider the type of speaker cabinet they prefer and if they favour aesthetic appeal over audio quality. Buyers need to examine the used speakers thoroughly to ensure that they are in good condition. Among other checks, the buyer needs to establish whether the cables are present, or whether new ones need to be bought. When purchasing a used set of bookshelf speakers or wall mounted speakers, buyers should have an understanding of the types of speakers available and their features. Used sets of bookshelf speakers and wall mounted speakers can be found at car boot sales and some specialist audio retailers, as well as online at eBay. eBay is a user-friendly website that also offers all of the cables and accessories required to set up the speakers.

What are Bookshelf Speakers and Wall Mounted Speakers?

Bookshelf speakers are compact and usually measure between 10 and 60 centimetres high, and up to 30 centimetres wide. Good quality bookshelf speakers offer high quality sound, and the majority of models can be used as part of a surround sound system. Bookshelf speakers, despite the name, should not be placed on an ordinary bookshelf. Instead, they should be mounted or placed on an appropriate stand.

Wall mounted speakers include the majority of bookshelf speakers. However, wall mounted speakers are built to be aesthetically pleasing, as well as delivering high quality audio. Wall mounted speakers are available in attractive designs and shapes, such as curves, long thin bars, or small flat circles. Wall mounted speakers often have a finish that can be shiny acrylic, stylish wood, or burnished metal.

Advantages of Buying Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

Buying used bookshelf speakers or wall mounted speakers has a number of advantages. Buyers can save a considerable amount of money by purchasing used speakers in a good condition. Purchasing used speakers enables buyers to secure a set of a much higher quality than they may otherwise be able to afford at the retail price of a new set. Higher quality speakers provide buyers with better sound. Audio enthusiasts commonly upgrade their speakers regularly, as they purchase the very latest models. So, their old models are often sold at low prices having seen little use.

Types of Speaker Cabinet for Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

Speaker cabinets are the boxes that house all of the electronic hardware than makes speakers function, such as amplifiers and circuitry. For bookshelf or wall mounted speakers, there are three distinct types of speaker cabinet and each type determines the audio quality and where to position the speaker.

Front Ported Cabinets for Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

Ports are holes that allow air to flow out of the speaker to increase the bass response. Front ported cabinets have a traditional port with a cone and dome located at the front. This allows buyers to place their speakers much closer to a wall. Front ported speakers produce good audio quality. They also make excellent subwoofers, and the bass level is usually of a better quality than other speaker types.

Rear Ported Cabinets for Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

Rear ported cabinets have a traditional port located at the back of the speaker. This allows for aesthetically pleasing speakers, often with fanciful designs covering the front. While usually very attractive, rear ported speakers have very limited placement options. They cannot be placed near a wall, as this significantly reduces their performance and sound quality.

Acoustic Suspension Cabinets for Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

Acoustic suspension cabinets do not have a traditional port. They vibrate like front ported speakers, but not to such an exaggerated extent. The sound is released from strategically placed gaps in the cabinet, often from around the sides. This is common for flat, shaped, wall mounted speakers and provides many options for speaker placement. However, sound quality may suffer particularly on less expensive models.

Factors to Consider When Buying Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

When purchasing used bookshelf speakers or wall mounted speakers, buyers need to consider a number of different factors. These factors include, cables and accessories, and the overall condition of the speakers.

Cables for Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

When purchasing used bookshelf or wall mounted speakers, buyers need to establish whether the speakers are supplied as a standalone item or whether audio cables and any other accessories are supplied with them. If the cables are missing, then they can be bought easily when the buyer knows which cables are compatible with the speakers. Some speakers can work with high-definition multimedia interface (HDMI) audio, while others use digital or analogue audio.

Accessories for Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

Some used bookshelf or wall mounted speakers are sold with mounting units, stands, or shelves. While bookshelf speakers can be placed on the floor, the sound quality suffers, so they perform better when they are elevated. Some wall mounted speakers have fittings that fix them onto static mounts, while others require a shelf, stand, or platform. If the used wall mounted speakers are not sold with mounting accessories, then these can be purchased separately.

Overall Condition of Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

Whether purchasing bookshelf speakers or wall mounted speakers, buyers need to thoroughly examine their condition to ensure that they are in good working order. The shell should be of good quality, with no cracks, holes, or obvious signs of damage. Speakers should only have minimal signs of general wear and tear, such as light scuffs and scratches on the outside of the cabinets, which do not affect their audio performance. The audio connections on the back of the speakers should be fitted securely, and any pins inside the connections should be present and straight. While there is likely to be a little dust, it should not clog the connections, and should be easily removeable.

Size of Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

The size is a definitive factor when considering which bookshelf or wall mounted speakers to buy. Many people assume the bigger the speaker, the better the sound. However, getting a speaker that is too large for the space can actually be detrimental to the sound quality. Buyers need to purchase a set of speakers that do not overwhelm their room. The speakers need enough room to play the audio without it being blocked by walls or furnishings, and there should be plenty of room for air to circulate all the way around.

Placement of Used Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers

The placement of the speakers is one of the most important aspects to consider when purchasing a set of bookshelf or wall mounted speakers. The placement depends on the size of the speakers and the type of cabinet. Rear ported speakers should not be placed against a wall, as this absorbs and distorts the sound. All speakers, regardless of size, need plenty of space around them. A speaker that is surrounded by clutter or furnishings will not produce good quality audio output because the sound will be absorbed as it is released from the speakers. It can also give the audio output a tinny quality. Bookshelf speakers should never just be placed on a wooden shelf, as this absorbs the sound, and placing the speakers in a semi-enclosed space creates noticeable distortion.

The table below provides a summary of the factors that should be considered when buying a used set of bookshelf or wall mounted speakers. Buyers can use this table to weigh up their options, ensuring that they purchase the right kind of used speakers.

Factors to Consider

Description

Cables

Cables should be present and in good working order, or will need to be bought

Accessories

Mounts should be present or will need to be bought

Condition

Minimal wear and tear expected

No obvious shell or port damage

Secure, undamaged connections

Size

Size should match the available space

Position

Free of clutter

Not too close to a wall

Aesthetically pleasing

The table above provides buyers with a simple method of assessing the main factors to consider when purchasing a used set of bookshelf or wall mounted speakers. Using the table, buyers are able to examine their options in order to make an informed purchase.

Buying a Used Set of Bookshelf Speakers or Wall Mounted Speakers on eBay

Buyers can purchase a used set of bookshelf speakers or wall mounted speakers on eBay with ease. Searching from the eBay homepage by using a phrase such as "used bookshelf speakers", produces a large number of results to browse through. These results can be reduced by entering specific search information, such as colour, cabinet type, or size, or by using the filters that include price range and condition.

When purchasing a used set of bookshelf or wall mounted speakers on eBay, buyers must read the item description thoroughly so that they are fully aware of the condition of the speakers and accessories that accompany them. If after reading the description and viewing the photos the buyer feels they still have questions or concerns, they should contact the seller.

Sellers are rated via feedback scores. Feedback is a collection of opinions left by previous buyers. This information is useful, allowing buyers to identify the sellers that have a reputation for providing high quality products and a fast, professional service.

Conclusion

Buying a used set of bookshelf speakers or wall mounted speakers is a great way to purchase high quality audio equipment at a fraction of the retail price. Bookshelf speakers are usually between 10 and 60 centimetres high, and most can be wall mounted. Wall mounted speakers are usually more aesthetically pleasing and available in a wider range of styles and shapes. Buyers should consider the available space that they have and the size of speaker cabinet that they wish to purchase. They also need to identify whether additional cables or mounting accessories are required to ensure they have everything that they need to set up their audio system successfully. When buying used speakers the buyer should check for wear and tear. Used sets of bookshelf or wall mounted speakers can be found on eBay in a wide range of styles and sizes. The website also offers all of the necessary cables and accessories.

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