Edifier is back again with another speaker. This time it’s a 2.0 speaker – the one particular type of speaker that isn’t particularly sought among the mass market of consumers. We’ve looked at the R1700BT a while back, and now it’s the R1580MB’s turn.
Looking at the specs and price, the R1580MB does have justifiable features that makes up for its price tag.
The Edifier R1580MB comes in a pretty compact box. 2.0 speakers are relatively compact with the absence of a subwoofer. It’s plain cardboard with no fancy printing or colors, just some key features highlighted at the front with an outline image of the speakers printed.
On the side of the box, once again the speaker features are shown. The frequency response graph is printed and stuck on the side. This is a crucial piece of information as the frequency response dictates the capability of the speaker when it comes to trebles, mids, and highs. More on this at our listening test later.
Opening up the box reveals a fairly simple set of contents. You have the warranty card, the user manual, a bunch of cables, and a remote control. It’s a mild surprise to see that the Edifier R1580MB is using this type of wires to hook up both left and right satellites instead of using conventional RCA cables. Speaking of RCA cables, the Edifier R1580MB comes with an RCA to 3.5mm audio jack and another RCA to RCA cable.
As for the remote control, don’t ever lose it as only the remote control can change between Bluetooth or line-in mode.
In terms of the overall aesthetics, the Edifier R1580MB comes in black and only black. For those who are seeking for black speakers, you might want to consider this.
One thing I realized is that the sides of the Edifier R1580MB is flat too. In contrast with the R1700BT that has some weird angled facets protruding, the R1580MB lets you lay the two satellites on its sides if you want to. Maybe stuff it underneath the monitor? Makes the table a little more compact.
At the front with the grill removed, the tweeter, woofer, and bass reflex vent can be seen. That little black circle at the top right side is the infrared receiver for the remote control.
Alright, the features. The Edifier R1580MB comes with an interesting set of features for a 2.0 speaker. It is advertised as a speaker that doubles for both music and PA systems. Why? Let’s take a look at the back first.
The Edifier R1580MB comes with a few knobs – one of which is at the back. First of which is the bass control that is found at the back of the right satellite. It’s at a rather inconvenient position, but that’ll do. It also has two RCA jacks – one for line-in (also labeled as PC) and another one for aux.
At the center here is where two 6.5mm audio jacks are found. These jacks are famous for microphones. Hence, that’s why the Edifier R1580MB is also advertised as a PA system speaker. However, there’s more.
On the right satellite, there’s another control panel for volume. It has a total of 3 separate volume knobs – one for microphone, one for music, and another one that’s simply labeled as “volume”, but actually controls the master volume.
Wait a minute – that means I can multiplex a softer music volume but with higher microphone volume. Doesn’t this make it a karaoke speaker too? Just plug in the microphone and audio source, and sing to your heart’s content.
What a wonderful time to be alive.
Using the Edifier R1580MB
For me, setting up the Edifier R1580MB is simple. Without the subwoofer, I can just place it on my photography table after taking the pictures – so that I can enjoy some tunes in the room as well.
I have to start off by first testing the Bluetooth connectivity. To my surprise, I can hold the Bluetooth button on the remove to enter pairing mode!
That aside, the Bluetooth connection is surprisingly strong and doesn’t have any noticeable connection dropoffs.
The triple volume knobs did confuse me at first as I turned the master volume up but the Edifier R1580MB remained silent. Then I realized there’s a separate volume knob for music – which works in tandem with the master volume.
Through my initial test, I realized that it really doesn’t have enough bass. That’s a given since it doesn’t have a dedicated subwoofer. I tuned the bass to the maximum and it sounded quite good – but depending on what genre of music I’m listening to.
I started off with some Jack Johnson. It sounds fantastically well with the Edifier R1580MB – but then again, the lower frequencies are a little… nonexistent. Where this 2.0 speaker shines is the vocals range – it’s very clear and crisp. Kind of makes sense since this speaker can be used as a PA system or for karaoke. Speaking of karaoke songs, it can play songs like Only You by The Platters with much clarity for both background music and vocals.
However, I did realize some weirdness when it comes to Tom Jones’s It’s Not Unusual. The entire song is only left with trumpets and his singing only. It might be due to the weak background music that the song originally has, plus the R1580MB isn’t particularly strong in amplifying the lower frequencies.
In other songs like Falcon Funk’s Catnip Trip sounds remarkably balanced with punchy bass that hits when it should but never felt sloppy. M2U’s Masquerade does show where the Edifier R1580MB shines the most as bassy parts do sound softer in volume compared to the violin – which means the Edifier R1580MB is indeed a 2.0 speaker that focuses more on mid to high range frequencies.
For those who would still like to hear some punchy bass but not the intense earthshaking vibrations, the Edifier R1580MB is actually a great speaker.
Certain songs that focuses a lot on low-frequency like Ferris Wheel by Diveo, it does sound like a part of the background music just got blended together at certain parts. The distinction between low-frequency notes is not as good as the 2.1 speaker that I’ve been using as my main speaker for a decade.
In whichever case, music with more vocals is perfect on the Edifier R1580MB. Be it jazz, soprano, musicals, orchestras, or even karaoke will be great. Remember – the Edifier R1580MB has two 6.5mm microphone jacks behind.
Unfortunately, we do not have microphones with 6.5mm audio jacks to try it on the R1580MB.
Wrapping up the Edifier R1580MB review
To conclude, the Edifier R1580MB sits at an interesting spot. First, let’s take a look at the price – RM349.90 at Lazada Malaysia. That means the Edifier R1580MB isn’t particularly affordable because it has other features that are not found on other bookshelf speakers – namely the microphone feature.
While highlighted one feature again and again – and that’s the two microphone ports. It allows you to use the R1580MB as a PA system – just hook up the speakers and connect the microphone and start talking. Or, play some karaoke music and start singing. That’s where the added value of the R1580MB is found.
Without a dedicated subwoofer, the Edifier R1580MB can still perform admirably for electronic music and EDM too, just that the earthshaking vibrations aren’t present. Bass is still punchy. When it comes to vocals and highs, the R1580MB aced it with flying colors – which is suiting since it has microphone ports.