Logitech R-20 Speakers and Subwoofer: A Review

After work yesterday, I popped by the local shady computer store to ask about a couple of things, one of them speakers, which I needed for my Powerbook. My laptop's speakers are really not that great, and it's a little mortifying that I relied on them for so long. Connecting the laptop to my stereo isn't really feasible anymore, it being 10 years old, the volume control effectively broken, the CD tray literally broken. So I bought the Logitech R-20. ($30 Canadian, and they were one of few types of speakers there, so I didn't do a lot of comparison shopping either. Or any research for that matter. Also, I distance myself from any accusation of my being an audiophile.) As for placement, I sought Chun-shek's wisdom, and he suggested that the subwoofer can go anywhere since bass doesn't travel in a straight line, but the right and left speakers should be at ear level while sitting down. That might not be possible with my current setup, so I'll have to hope the angle of the two speakers will make up for being below my head while at my desk.

After a few hours of use, which consisted of listening to KEXP streaming over the web and an episode of Open Source about the limits of the wisdom of crowds (while ironing, of course), I'm pretty happy with them, so much so that I'll reproduce Franklin Villalobos's review from Amazon.com since it nicely reflects how I feel.


  • Headphone jack and POWER button in the left speaker
  • No "wired remote" (which adds more clutter to your desktop)
  • Nice design for the price
  • Even cheaper than Creative's SBS 350


  • Small sub-woofer
  • No "wired remote" which means you have to keep one of the speakers close.
  • No bass control (which usually means too much bass if your audio source has no equalization control)

The cons aren't really an issue for me: I almost considered not getting a subwoofer at all, don't want another remote, wired or otherwise, and I'm happy with software equalization.

Now to find somewhere, other than leaning against my dresser, at a 45 degrees angle, to put the subwoofer.


A year later and I still love these speakers. I bought them for about 30 dollars and I have no complaints. The sound is decent, and they're arranged on my desk unobtrusively. Though I bought the speakers before, now my MacBook's remote is effectively the speaker's remote (so I did end up getting another), and too much bass never been an issue.

Today I noticed some popping on the speakers, and if I didn't know better, I'd say that it was related to hard drive activity on my MacBook Pro. I've had a similar thing happen with my phone, where noise from the speakers would anticipate a phone call or a text message. A quick search for 'logitech r-20 speakers popping' didn't come up with anything, but evidently other Logitech speakers had popping noises.