A couple of Christmases back my lovely wife purchased me two vinyl albums. One was Kind of Blue by Miles Davis and the other was Duke Ellington & John Coltrane. I had been saying for years I wanted to get into jazz as my grandfather used to listen to it. These were the first two jazz albums I added to my collection and it started me on a path of collecting jazz records.
The thing is, I am kind of a weird cat and I decided if I was going to listen to jazz music it had to be done on an old school record player, coming out of some old school vintage looking speakers.
That is why today we are looking at the best vintage speakers for jazz. These are some awesome speakers that I have not just selected because they sound great. The way they look is actually just as important as how they sound as jazz to me is a state of mind and listening to my jazz records coming out of my modern looking speakers just feels wrong.
The 6 Best Vintage Speakers For Jazz Reviews
These were some of the best speakers that fit the criteria I could find. I have gone for three “normal” sets of speakers and three speakers that have gone all-in on the whole vintage design thing.
- ClearClick Retro AM/FM Radio with Bluetooth – Classic Wooden Vintage Retro Style Speaker
- Retro Radio Vintage Bluetooth Speaker
- Fuse Vintage Retro Bluetooth AM/FM Radio Speaker
- Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
- Klipsch RP-150M Bookshelf Speaker – Cherry
- Edifier S3000Pro Audiophile Active Speakers
1. ClearClick Retro AM/FM Radio with Bluetooth – Classic Wooden Vintage Retro Style Speaker
I am starting off with this very retro-looking ClearClick Retro AM/FM Radio with Bluetooth – Classic Wooden Vintage Retro Style Speaker. The design on this thing is awesome and it reminds me of something I would have seen in my grandparent’s house back in the 1980s. I feel that the 80 bucks asking price is not bad at all for something like this. It has dials for the volume and the radio which I thought was a great deal of fun. It is a little over 10 inches tall so it looks cool, but it is not over imposing where it takes over a whole shelf or area of your house. It does have these annoying blue lights though that I feel take away from the retro design! Why they did this I do not know!
This is Bluetooth and Bluetooth only so that is something to keep in mind before you buy this. That means if you are using a turntable, it has to also have Bluetooth. If you are streaming from your phone it will not be an issue. The sound quality out of this thing is fine. Look you know going into something like this that it is not going to sound like Miles Davis is there in the room with you. It has a real “old soul” as far as the sound goes and I found it more than pleasant while I was playing around with it.
What Other People Are Saying
There are many glowing reviews on Amazon, but this one says it best. “I use this radio to listen to Internet streaming music of the ’20s and ’30s and old-time radio shows. I have higher fidelity Bluetooth speakers but I like the old-fashioned look and sound of this radio” that right there sums up to me the kind of person this speaker is aimed at.
I thought that the ClearClick Retro AM/FM Radio with Bluetooth – Classic Wooden Vintage Retro Style Speaker was a ton of fun. It has a neat, retro vibe that I feel fits in very well with jazz music and the sound quality is way better than you would think out of a speaker this size.
- The cool retro design
- It connects very easy to Bluetooth devices
- The sound quality was very good
- It feels very sturdy and looks great
- That blue light takes away a bit of the retro charm
- This is Bluetooth only, no jacks on the back!
2. Retro Radio Vintage Bluetooth Speaker
Next up we have this delightful and so small it fits in the palm of your hand, Retro Radio Vintage Bluetooth Speaker which I was lucky enough to get in the mail just around a week or so ago to check out. This is old school with a capital O! It comes in two designs the cherry which I have and also a sleek looking walnut which in all honesty I think fits more in with the jazz vibe we are looking at today. This thing only costs around 40 bucks so it is great if you want something cheap. It is pretty feature stacked too! It has Bluetooth, but it also has an AUX jack in the back along with a memory card slot too. It is fully wireless and a four-hour charge can give you around 8 hours of playback if you want to take it outside or something.
This tiny speaker is packing a 5-watt amplifier which may not sound like much, but playing jazz music through it at a decent volume sounds pretty great. It has a real old-school kind of vibe to the sound that it produces. It is not the same kind of sound that you are going to get out of a 300 bucks set of speakers of course. However, I have played around with speakers of a similar price range as this, and I can say this one is right around the top when it comes to the sound quality it produces.
What Other People Are Saying
There is not much in the way of information about this, but there are many positive customer reviews over at Amazon. “Fits in the palm of my hand! It’s super light and portable to take with you on the go. Whether it be camping or taking it to the drive-in, it’s super reliable and louder than you’d expect” echoes what many of the other reviews on there happen to say.
The Retro Radio Vintage Bluetooth Speaker is really cool and way better sounding than I thought it would be. The size of this thing is just nuts and you do not appreciate how small it is until you hold it in your hand. It may not knock your socks off, but if you want to know what the best vintage speakers for jazz are, especially at a low price, this has to be in the conversation.
- This thing could not be any more retro
- It is very small, fits in the palm of your hand
- The sound had way more power than I thought
- It costs around 40 bucks which is a steal
- It may look a bit too small for some people
- At this price and size, you are not going to be rocking the room
3. Fuse Vintage Retro Bluetooth AM/FM Radio Speaker
I swear when you see movies that are set in the 60s or so there is always some kind of radio/stereo that looks just like this Fuse Vintage Retro Bluetooth AM/FM Radio Speaker. I love the retro charm that this has and the near 80 bucks asking price is more than fair in my opinion. It is around 11 inches tall which is a good size. It captures your attention, but it is not too in your face. The dials and the radio on the bottom along with that grille give this thing a ton of personality While this is marketed with Bluetooth connectivity in mind, it does also have an AUX input in the back.
The sound that this thing is pumping out is done via two 3 and a half inches 5-watt speakers which is more than powerful enough for a speaker of this size. I think thank you will be able to listen to your jazz a little louder on this than the other two we just looked at. When I listen to jazz I like to go for a more laidback kind of volume and not too loud, but I get the impression this one here would be ok at a louder volume.
What Other People Are Saying
If you look at Amazon, you are going to find a great number of people who are very happy with this speaker and that is always great to read. I also found a pretty neat video review that is only a couple of minutes long, but it lets you know exactly what you are getting into with this speaker.
Fuse Vintage Retro Bluetooth AM/FM Radio Speaker is a speaker that I really need to try and get my grubby paws on as it looks fantastic. It has lots of good reviews and the negative stuff I have read about this seems really nitpicky and as if people were expecting the same quality that they would get with a speaker that costs several hundred bucks.
- The design of this thing is so cool
- It is made to be very sturdy
- The sound appears to be of a very decent quality
- The retro charm it has is perfect for jazz!
- It might not be as large as some people think
- Will the sound be tiny at louder volumes?
4. Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
Now we have more “normal” looking speakers in these Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers. I have used these many, many times before, but I do feel that they are fitting with our looking for the best vintage speakers for jazz. They have a fantastic woodgrain look to them which gives them a bit of an old soul, but at the same time, they are also a bit on the modern side as they are very sleek. These are Bluetooth speakers, but they have jacks in the back which are great if you have a turntable and some awesome jazz records like I do.
I can speak first hand when I tell you that for 150 bucks, the sound quality out of these things is phenomenal. A 4-inch bass driver and a 19 mm dome tweeter are what this thing is packing and as it has dials on the side to let you play around. You can get a sound that is just perfect for your own personal taste. As I said, I have used these speakers before and I think that they are just amazing in the sound that they offer, especially considering the asking price.
What Other People Are Saying
Over at Amazon, these speakers have over 4 and a half thousand customer reviews! What is even more impressive is when you consider that well over 90 percent of these are positive reviews. I also found a video showcase that showcases these bad boys in action.
I cannot say enough positive things about these speakers. I will admit that when I first purchased these, jazz music was not something I was thinking about, it was actually hard rock. However, I can tell you from personal experience that these speakers sound great. Not only that, I feel the design of them has more than enough old-school in it to make it fit perfectly if you are wanting a more jazz aesthetic.
- They are very well-made speakers
- I love the sound, even at higher volumes that these produce
- They offer Bluetooth connectivity as well as a direct connection
- I feel that the asking price is very fair
- They might be a tad too contemporary in their design for some
- They are not the largest speakers in the world
5. Klipsch RP-150M Bookshelf Speakers – Cherry
The version of the Klipsch RP-150M Bookshelf Speakers that I have used are the black (or ebony) as they call it. However, I feel that the cherry design is way more in tune with the world of jazz. If it was not for the cool looking base on the bottom, I could have seen these in my grandparent’s house in the early 80s. They have managed to give these speakers a bit of a retro charm all the while making them more than able to fit into a more modern setting. These are NOT Bluetooth so that may be something to consider. Also, at 300 bucks they are more expensive than all the speakers that came before these.
I could spend a whole hour just writing about the way that these are made, but that would probably bore you to tears! All that you need to know is that these speakers are made with great sound in mind and that is clear right from the start. Once I broke these in, the sound was like candy to my ears. No matter if I was listening to Bud Powell if I was in a jazz mood or some Poison if I was feeling my inner rocker. I never noticed a single issue when listening to music through these.
What Other People Are Saying
Our buddies at Amazon have many great customer reviews for these speakers. Even at the higher price range, they still have over 200 reviews with over 90 percent of them being positive. This may sound over the top “From the minute the music started I was blown away. I thought I knew what speaker imaging was, turns out I was wrong. I was literally enveloped in the music as if I was in the studio when they recorded it” However, I fully agree with this person’s views on these speakers.
As you can tell I freaking love these Klipsch RP-150M Bookshelf Speakers. When I tell my friends or family about getting new speakers, these are always in the conversation. I know that we are looking for the best vintage speakers for jazz music, but truth be told these speakers are fantastic no matter what kind of music you are listening to.
- These are very sturdy and well made
- The sound quality is fantastic
- I feel that these could be 100 bucks more and they would still be worth it!
- Great for all kinds of music, not just jazz
- These do require a bit of breaking in
- The stand, while cool does take away from the old-school vibe
6. Edifier S3000Pro Audiophile Active Speakers
Last but by no means least we have these epic Edifier S3000Pro Audiophile Active Speakers. Now, these cost 800 bucks so I know that these are going to be out of reach for the average Joe. Hell, I have not even used these myself, but I wanted to put a really extravagant set of speakers on this list. The design on these may not exactly scream jazz, but I feel these have a bit of an 80s vibe going on and to me, the 80s were the last days of the true jazz clubs. These are Bluetooth speakers, but they have a ton of hookups on the back that you can also use.
256 watts! I was kind of floored when I read that as these things must pack a serious punch when it comes to sound quality. In all honesty with you guys, it was the fact that the name of these speakers had audiophile in it that really captured my attention. In my experience speakers like this do have some break-in time, but that just gives you an excuse to listen to more jazz as you are trying to help them find their groove.
What Other People Are Saying
Even with the high price tag, over 100 people have reviewed these over at Amazon. 95 percent of the reviews are positive so that right there tells you people hold these in very high regard. I also found a very positive video review that lets you get a better impression of what you can expect from these speakers.
I would love to give these things a try, but if I were to drop 800 bucks on speakers, they would have to be bigger than this as I would have to live in them once my wife kicked me out. In all seriousness, these Edifier S3000Pro Audiophile Active Speakers are very high-quality and will rock any room they are in. Plus, they have an 80s style that I feel would go great with jazz music.
- These are way more compact than you would think
- The tech inside of these is designed with amazing sound in mind
- They have a great look to them
- All kinds of music is going to sound great through these
- The 800 bucks asking price makes these very, very expensive
- They may not be retro enough in their design for some people
What Are The 6 Best Vintage Speakers For Jazz?
If you want a speaker that looks like it could be from the 60s, 70s, or so one you want to go for one of the three we looked at right at the start. Those three speakers all have a lot of charm to them and are a whole bunch of fun. I am sure any jazz that you listen to through these would sound great. For me, I have to say that my personal favorite of all the speakers we have looked at today are the Klipsch RP-150M Bookshelf Speakers as I have used them a great deal and always loved the sound they produce. You get the best of modern and vintage with these speakers in my opinion.