Edifier was originally known for high-quality budget speakers but has since expanded into higher-end products. The company’s S1000MKII is a great set of bookshelf speakers, but apparently, the company thought there was still room for improvement, hence the new Edifier S1000W.
You may be puzzled by the W in the name, rather than MKIII. Don’t worry, this is for a reason. These are essentially the S1000MKII, but with additional wireless connectivity. They cost $50 more than the S1000MKII, which are still available in you don’t need wireless.
Like the MKIIs, the Edifier S1000W are meant to be do-it-all speakers, covering everything from music to TV and movies. Do they pull it off as a jack of all trades, or are they more of a master of one specific use case?
Build and Design: Premium by Design
- Dimensions: 7.8 x 13.6 x 11.6in (19.81 x 34.54 x 29.46cm)
- Weight (pair): 36.97lbs (16.77kg)
Like the S1000MKIIs before them, the Edifier S1000W speakers have a unique look. They use real wood on the sides, which contrasts well with the darker body of the rest of the speaker. The grille uses a unique “floating” design that subtly stands out.
From the wood on the sides to the texture of the rest of the speaker body, these feel great. That’s a strange detail for speakers, as it seems like Edifier built these like you would headphones or something else that people handle often. That said, it’s still a nice detail.
The speakers are angled back slightly, which Edifier says is for acoustic reasons. I’m sure it is, especially since these are meant to double as computer speakers as well as bookshelf speakers, but it gives them a distinct look. In general, the contrast of the wood with the floating grille design and the leaned-back angle gives them a half-modern / half-retro look.
The remote sensor and LED are located on the right speaker, which gives them a touch of asymmetry. That said, there are no knobs or inputs on the front of either speaker, so they look mostly uniform.
Connectivity: Everything You Might Want
- Analog inputs: 2x RCA line-in
- Digital inputs: 1x Coaxial / 1x Optical
- Wireless inputs: Bluetooth / Wi-Fi
- Bluetooth version: 5.0
Putting the W in the model name (presumably for “wireless”) is somewhat of an odd choice, as the S1000MKII features Bluetooth already. That said, the S1000W bump the Bluetooth version up to 5.0 and add Wi-Fi connectivity, which is a major step forward for wireless audio quality, as it enables wireless hi-res audio.
Wi-Fi connectivity also means you can use the S1000W with Apple AirPlay 2, Spotify, or TIDAL Connect. It also means that you can use the speaker with Amazon Alexa, though you’ll need another Alexa-enabled device with a microphone if you want to use a voice assistant, as the S1000W speakers don’t include a microphone.
When it comes to the physical inputs and other connections, the back panel of the S1000W is nearly identical to its predecessor. You get two analog RCA line inputs and a pair of digital inputs: one RCA coaxial input and one optical audio input.
One final aspect of the S1000W is support for multiroom and whole-home audio, meaning you can pair multiple speakers for synchronized music throughout your home.
Setting Up the Edifier S1000W
Getting everything set up is a relatively simple process. First, place the speakers where you want them, but remember that the right speaker is the powered side, so you’ll want this near a power outlet. Plug in the right speaker, then connect the 5-pin speaker wire between the left and right speakers.
Turn on the power switch on the back of the speaker, and you’re done, assuming all you’re using is Bluetooth or the physical inputs. For Wi-Fi and all the extras it brings, you’re going to need to configure the speakers with the Edifier Home app, available for iPhone and iPad as well as Android devices.
In the app, you need to add the S1000W as a new device, then pair them to your Wi-Fi network. This is a simple process that the app guides you through, and once you’re finished, you won’t have to do it again unless you buy another pair of speakers.
Once you’ve connected the speakers to your Wi-Fi, place the included batteries in the remote, and you’re ready to go.
Controls and Remote: Simple and Intuitive
On the back of the right speaker, there are a few physical controls. There’s a row of three knobs, with the top one controlling the volume. You can also press this button in to cycle through the various inputs without using the remote.
The other two knobs are a simple EQ, with bass and treble controls. I mainly kept these at the 12-o-clock position, but I could see them being handy if you need to cut a little treble or bump the bass up a bit.
Having rudimentary controls on the speakers themselves is useful, but for everything but the EQ, you’ll probably want to use the remote rather than the onboard controls. On the top of the remote, you’ll find the power button and the mute button.
The center of the remote is set up almost like concentric rings, with various inputs surrounding the volume and playback controls. The playback controls are handy, letting you easily pause and resume playback or skip songs via Bluetooth or other supported connections.
Finally, the Edifier Home app also lets you control the speakers, but aside from pairing devices and enabling Amazon Alexa, for example, all the other controls are the same as what you’ll find on the remote.
Sound Quality: Great for Music, Videos, and Gaming
- Drivers (each speaker): 5.5-inch aluminum woofer, 1-inch titanium dome tweeter
- Power output: 35W×2 (Mid-Range/Bass) + 25W×2 (Treble)
- Frequency response: 45Hz-40kHz
The S1000W features a 5.5-inch aluminum woofer for bass and midrange duties. This is complemented by a 1-inch titanium dome tweeter, which Edifier says offers better dispersion and sensitivity than the plastic tweeters used in computer speakers and some bookshelf speakers.
The S1000W powers these drivers with 120 watts of power, which seems like it is used carefully. While the maximum volume may not be quite as loud as you’d expect with that type of wattage, the speakers have minimal distortion and plenty of bass.
If you’re connecting via the digital inputs, or you’re streaming over Wi-Fi, don’t worry about lower quality. The S1000W features 24-bit/192kHz hi-res audio, and the internal converters sound great. Overall, the S1000W lean toward neutral, but these are anything but boring or lifeless.
Beauty Pill’s “Near Miss Stories” is a song that spreads itself across the stereo field, and the S1000Ws give the instruments and sounds the room they need. Vocals in general seem to have extra presence on these speakers, but they aren’t overly loud here. The piano and bass at the end of the song sound massive considering the relatively small drivers.
To try to throw the speakers for a loop, I played Cream’s “SWLABR.” On the wrong speakers, this song can quickly turn into a muddy mess. On these speakers, that isn’t a problem, and in general, there is a clarity you won’t find in lower-budget speakers. Vocals are again very present, almost like they seem to come out of a phantom center channel speaker that isn’t really there.
In general, I found that while the S1000Ws definitely lean toward the neutral side, they’re flattering on most songs. This doesn’t mean that they’re inaccurate, but they seem to present an optimistic view of whatever you’re listening to.
Using the S1000Ws for general video use and gaming worked surprisingly well. The speakers almost made my 15-inch laptop screen seem much larger, just from how much bigger everything sounded. Many speakers that are great for music end up being overkill for videos or gaming, but that isn’t the case here.
Should You Buy the Edifier S1000W?
The sound quality of the Edifier S1000W would be more of a surprise if I hadn’t already reviewed the company’s Stax Spirit S3 headphones. As with those headphones, I found myself going back and listening to some of my favorite songs, just to hear how nicely the S1000W treated them.
These aren’t an impulse buy, but as far as speakers go, they aren’t anywhere near as expensive as they could be. Paying the extra $50 for the Wi-Fi connectivity and wireless hi-res audio is worth it for future-proofing your setup, even if you’re not going to use the wireless connectivity right away.
If you’re looking for the potential to evolve into a whole home audio system, and you want it to be seamless, you may want to opt for a pair of Sonos One SL speakers. That said, if you’re just looking for a great-sounding set of stereo speakers you can add on to later on, the Edifier S1000Ws are a great choice.
Here’s What We Like
- Great neutral sounding but fun sound signature
- Wi-Fi connectivity beings AirPlay 2, Spotify, TIDAL Connect and more
- Plenty of analog and digital inputs
- Remote has every button you need
- Edifier Home app makes setup easy
And What We Don't
- Not cheap