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|Fenton CSB15 Speaker|
|ION Audio Party Rocker|
|Fenton Pair Bluetooth Speaker set|
|VocalStar Portable 10-inch|
|Fenton Karaoke Bedroom Speakers/Amplifier|
Karaoke swept the nation when it first arrived in the UK in the 1980’s. The concept, which or course you know involves singing along – often very badly – to a backing track of a popular song, in front of a crowd, had been around for a long time before we saw it in the UK. You want to know a bit about the history of Karaoke? Of course you do, and we are here to tell you all about it – before we go on to recommend some of the best speakers for the job!
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The karaoke machine as we know it was invented by a Japanese musician in 1971. Sadly, he failed to file a patent, so the first commercial machines – from the company Clarion – were of no financial benefit to him. We can, of course, all thank him for the awful caterwauling that our friends and family subject us to at weddings, parties and in bars across the country.
Karaoke fast became very big business in Japan and soon spread to other countries in the Far East. Karaoke clubs began springing up all over the place – these are generally ‘gentleman’s clubs’ with other entertainment, so to speak, on offer – and the craze soon caught on in the USA, Europe and the rest of the world. At one point it would have been impossible to walk down any high street in the UK on a Friday or Saturday night without encountering a karaoke bar. The craze died down for a while but – yes, folks – it’s back again, and in force, too!
Nowadays, you can buy karaoke equipment fairly cheaply, but for quality sound you need decent speakers, and that’s what this review is about – the best karaoke speakers on the market. So, before we list out top 10, here’s a bit more about what they are, and why they are specific to the genre.
Table of Contents
- Best Karaoke Speakers
- 1. Fenton CSB15 Speaker
- 2. ION Audio Party Rocker
- 3. Fenton Pair Bluetooth Speaker set
- 4. VocalStar Portable 10-inch
- 5. Fenton Karaoke Bedroom Speakers/Amplifier
- 6. Skytech 12” Active
- 7. Vocal-Star Party Pack Complete Karaoke
- 8. Max 2000W 15-Inch Speakers
- 9. Lexibook Portable Karaoke
- 10. Intempo Wireless Bluetooth Speaker
- How It Works
- Features to Consider
- Let’s Wrap It Up!
Best Karaoke Speakers
It’s important to remember that most of these speakers, while reviewed as karaoke speakers, are also suitable for other uses and could be used as part of a PA system. This one, from Fenton, is one such, although it is primarily aimed at the club user or for high-end home systems. It has a 15-inch speaker, hence the name, and it comes from a brand that is well-known in the field. It’s a quality item and will go down well as part of a karaoke rig.
What are the specs? It’s fitted with a quality woofer and horn, so you get the bass and the mid-range – perfect for vocal performances – plus it comes in a sturdy cabinet. It is self-powered so you do not need an external amplifier. You get volume, treble and bass controls that independently act on the unit, and it is easy to set up and use. An 800watt integrated amplifier is more than adequate for the use, and it’s relatively compact at 345x470x655mm, and weighing little over 13kg. You also get all the necessary input and output jacks. It’s decent, and sensibly priced.
Among this list you will find two different types of karaoke speaker. There are those such as the above, which are quite serious bits of kit, and this type – the ION Party Rocker – which are fun and frivolous. Unlike the above, this is not a serious PA speaker, but it would be sufficient for a home karaoke set-up. It comes as an all-in-one package, including amplifier and all the controls, plus you get a dome party light on the top and an LED coloured grill – so it looks the part.
What does it sound like? Well, plug your MP3 player in – or one of many other devices that it will accommodate – and you get home karaoke quality from the 40watt output speaker. That’s enough for your front room but will fall flat in a pub. It features on 4-inch speaker, comes with a decent microphone, and can be run off batteries as well as the mains, and if you’re looking for one for home use and a bit of fun, it might appeal – but at the price we think there are more capable devices here.
This pair of speakers – they go together so provide a decent surround sound effect – is another example from the Fenton range and, as such, one well worth checking out. Thy are tall standing items that are designed to be placed either side of a stage or room for effect, and not only do they come with all the input and output required, they are also compatible with most AV devices, and come with the ability to stream from your device via a Bluetooth connection. You also get a US port and an SD card slot for added versatility.
What sort of sound will you get? Well that depends who is singing, but the 600W output provided by the built-in amplifier is enough for a small club set-up, and independent bass, treble and volume controls give you more of a handle on things. For a travelling karaoke DJ or for anyone looking for a rig for a pub, club, café or other commercial premises, this could be a very sensible purchase at what we think is an excellent price.
This model, from VocalStar, is designed especially with karaoke in mind, so it’s right up our street! It is a neat and compact model – the overall size is 57x35x31cm and it weighs just 13kg – so is quite easy to move around if you are a travelling karaoke DJ, and it comes with a pole mounting slot in case you want to raise it and have the appropriate pole! You get al the input and output modes you need for a good karaoke set up, and it is also Bluetooth compatible so you can stream directly to the speaker from your laptop, tablet or other devices.
Where it falls down in comparison to some is that you only get 150watts of output. This comes from an active in-built amplifier that can be powered by mains or battery. This will be enough for small rooms, but we fear will find it hard to manage, for example, a typical pub setting. You do get a good quality wireless microphone with it, and it comes with all the necessary controls, so it’s worth another look – although be aware there are more powerful models here for less money.
The Fenton brand is back again with this rather neat little set up. It’s designed for home use – hence the bedroom name – and is sensibly priced in that bracket. You get two separate speakers – that’s a decent package for the price – plus a separate amplifier into which everything plugs in, so you have a full karaoke rig that would be perfect for the home. It’s only 40watts output – that’s times two however – so will not be sufficient for a pub or club.
However, if you want a home karaoke unit this could be the one. It comes with two microphones – not wireless but that’s no problem for the intended use – and you can stream audio to the unit, plus a USB port and SD card slot, and it is very compact indeed so you can pack it away happily and not take up much space. It also comes with treble and bass control and given the price, we think that this little karaoke package is worth a second look if you want a home-use unit.
This model, on closer examination, is actually a Fenton speaker, and a smaller brother to the first one we reviewed, the CBS15. This is the CSB 12, and as such has a 12 inch speaker that delivers all the attributes you would expect from a quality brand. This one is very nicely made as are all Fenton goods, and would make a very decent addition to any sort of a karaoke rig.
What are the specs? It’s fitted with a quality woofer and horn, so you get the bass and the mid-range – perfect for vocal performances – plus it comes in a sturdy cabinet. It is self-powered so you do not need an external amplifier. You get volume, treble and bass controls that independently act on the unit, and it is easy to set up and use. A 600watt integrated amplifier is more than adequate for the use, and it’s relatively compact at 320x420x600mm, and weighing little under 13kg. You also get all the necessary input and output jacks. It’s decent, and sensibly priced.
So far we have been talking about karaoke speakers, which are neat little devices that cover a range of power and purposes, but this package – from Vocal-Star – is a full karaoke set-up. What you get is pretty comprehensive, so here’s a brief list: the Vocal-Star 800 karaoke machine, which can also copy your CD’s for future use and convert them to MP3, and also records performers and can even score them for a laugh; a Bluetooth amplifier with three mic inputs and all the outputs you need; two 200watt speakers on stands, a pair of wired microphones, and a full set of 1200 party songs already included.
Does that sound like it does the job to you? Well, it probably does! It’s not as powerful as some of the packages on here, which are usually speakers alone plus a pair of microphones, but you do get everything you need, and we like the fact it comes with the karaoke machine itself – which has the AV outputs you need – plus it can copy the CD’s you have to MP3. It’s a few hundred quid, which is more than all the speaker units on here, but it may be worth it if you want the full gear.
So far we’ve included a selection of speaker packages and karaoke machines offering between 40 and 800watts of output power; this item features two speakers, each of 1000watts maximum, so you have a full 2000watts of output power ready to go. That’s enough for any reasonably sixed karaoke venue – a pub, for example, or a medium sized room in a club – and more than enough for the likes of wedding and party venues.
The 15-inch speakers offer 3-way range so you have all the frequencies covered, and are quality items, plus you get the horn and tweeter systems for all the sound you need. What you do need to remember here is that you don’t get the built-in amplifier; these are just speakers, albeit very nice ones that would be perfectly adequate for PA use. You also don’t get microphones. If you have all the kit and want to upgrade to more powerful speakers, this could be the package for you and at the price, we think it good value for quality, powerful speakers such as these.
Thought most of our selections have been serious karaoke and PA speakers – plus one above that is a full party package – we have also included one that is a fun item, intended for home use and nothing more. This is another of these, and if that’s what you want – a karaoke machine for use when your mates are around or for a fun family singalong – this one is certainly worth looking at as it comes at what is a bargain price.
The specifications are not up to much – you get a nice little cabinet with 2 x 3W speakers in it, so that’s enough for the purpose – but it’s a fun item, and comes with nice LED lights and a microphone. It’s Bluetooth streaming so you can send your audio from a phone or tablet, it also has a UDB port and an SD card slot, and it’s easy to use and compact at just 14x15x32cm, and weighs less than 2kg. All in all, for a few hours fun in the home, we reckon it’s the one to go for.
Our final example is this model, from Intempo, and while we reckon it would be decent as an additional speaker to a sound system – say when you’re outdoors and could put it on the parcel shelf of your car and stream music – it might not be great for karaoke other than for home use. It can be connected to devices through an auxiliary cable if you wish, and is quite a neat design with a carry handle for added convenience.
In specification terms it’s pretty basic; the output is only 20watts, which is not going to do much in anything bigger than your lounge, although the speaker is pretty good when it comes to bass response and clear treble. It is not specifically designed for vocals, so may fall down in karaoke use. You do get LED lights for that party effect, it can be run on rechargeable batteries, and it’s decent quality, but in this company it is always going to struggle to find buyers.
That’s our list of the top 10 best karaoke speakers on the market right now, so which is for you? Before we give you our verdict, let’s look at what you need to think about when buying one of these.
How It Works
So you are into karaoke? Perhaps you want a set-up for home use – it’s a great idea for parties or even for when you have your mates around – or maybe you are looking for a commercial karaoke rig for use in your bar or club, or as a business? The sheer variety of equipment on offer these days is testament to just how popular karaoke is, and it is one of those things that crosses all the boundaries. Put a karaoke DJ on at a party and you’ll get everyone from the youngest kids to granny getting up and having a go!
What is a karaoke speaker? Effectively, it’s akin to any other type of speaker you would use with a P.A. system, although the Karaoke version tends to be geared towards the mid-range so it handles the vocal section better. You want one with decent output – we’ve selected a range for you to look at that are among the most popular with karaoke users – and preferably with its own power, so you don’t need an externa amplifier. After all, if you are offering a travelling karaoke DJ service, you want portability.
What else do you need to know? You need to ensure that you have plenty of input and output jacks for added versatility, you want a decent price, and you want a good power output – which we’ve already said! So, let’s stop waffling and have a look at the top 10 best karaoke speakers on the market right now.
Features to Consider
What do you need to think about before you choose one from our list? Here’s a few pointers to help you along the way.
- Power – you need to decide on the power output that is correct for you, and this depends on the use you are looking for. If you are after a simple, fun karaoke machine for home use, one of the cheap and simple devices will do the job, with 20W output or less being suitable for a few singalongs on the lounge or bedroom. If you need one for a club or pub set-up, or are looking to provide a travelling DJ service, we recommend 600W as the minimum.
- Connectivity – many of the serious models here have Bluetooth connectivity, which is very useful indeed. You also need to be able to connect your MP3 or other device to download music, or a CD player if the need be.
- Size – if on the move, you want light, portable but powerful, and there are some here that do that job very well – others, less so.
- Amp and Accessories – you want one that comes with an integral amplifier, and you want microphones into the bargain, and most of the top models on our list offer both of these.
Bar the price, which varies greatly, that’s about it, so which of these is for you? Let’s have a look!
Let’s Wrap It Up!
Which of the best karaoke speakers we have listed is for you? That depends upon what you are looking for, so let’s split this up.
First, if you are looking for a complete set up, to start from scratch, the Vocal-Star Party Pack – number 7 – is ideal. It may look expensive, but try buying all the bits separately and you will pay a lot more. You get everything for a viable pub set-up for a small to medium room.
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If you are looking for something cheap and cheerful, then pick no 9, the Lexibook model. It’s neat, fun and does the trick, and won’t cost you much more than a few drinks.
For a serious on the move or pub or club speaker package, it looks like Fenton is the way to go, and there are two we like especially here: the first is no. 1 on the list, offering an impressive 800w with all the stuff you need – although you’ll need to add a microphone – and the second is no. 3, which provides you with a pair of speakers and a 600W amplifier at an excellent price.
The choice is yours, and we hope you have helped you find the best karaoke speaker so you can amuse or annoy everyone, have fun!