Are you looking for a pair of affordable but high-quality speakers that can rest with magnificent sounds on top of your shelves? Then Polk audio has good news for you, they introduce Polk t15 and Polk ts100 speakers at an affordable price and promise good quality. By comparing Polk t15 vs ts100 speaker we are going to find out which one is the best.
The Polk shelf speakers- Polk t15 and Polk ts100 speak volumes about superior quality and performance. However, comparing Polk t15 vs ts100 speakers can seem to be a daunting task because of their undeniable resemblance. Both speakers are bookshelf speakers and made for indoor use. The speakers come with one tweeter and one woofer, the woofer size of both speakers is the same. The Sensitivity rate and peak power are also the same.
They have more similarities than differences because they are both from the same brand. But if you see the difference you can see the tweeter size is not the same. The frequency response also is not the same Polk audio tsi100 frequency response is 60 Hz – 24 kHz and Polk audio ts15 frequency response is 53 Hz – 25 kHz.
Whilst the Polk audio tsi100 is commendable for its superior performance in sound, the Polk audio ts15 exhibits remarkable performance with the help of dynamic balance technology and other creatively crafted features on a low budget.
Similarities: Polk t15 vs tsi100
|Feature||Polk t15||Polk tsi100|
|Type of speaker||Bookshelf||Bookshelf|
|Number of speakers||Two||Two|
|Speaker design||Two way||Two way|
|Speaker use||Indoor use||Indoor use|
|Enclosure Type||Bass enclosure||Bass enclosure|
|Number of tweeters||One||One|
|Number of midranges||Zero||Zero|
|Number of woofers||One||One|
|Woofer size||13 cm||13 cm|
|Sensitivity||89 dB||89 dB|
|Peak power||100 Watts||100 Watts|
|Impedance||8 Ohms||8 Ohms|
|Remote control||Not available||Not available|
|Button controls||Not available||Not available|
|Phone or Application control||Not available||Not available|
|Wifi||Not available||Not available|
|Bluetooth||Not available||Not available|
From the table above, it is visible that both the bookshelf speakers Polk audio t15 vs Polk audio tsi100 have many striking similarities. The most obvious resemblance of these Polk audio models is that they are two-way bookshelf speakers that are specified for indoor usage, produced by the eminent audio manufacturing brand Polk Audio.
Differences: Polk t15 vs tsi100
|Feature||Polk t15||Polk tsi100|
|Dimensions||18 x 17 x 27 cm||26 x 18 x 28|
|Weight||3.7 kg||4.5 kg|
|Tweeter size||1.9 cm||2.5 cm|
|Tweeter material||Silk dome tweeter||Dynamic Balance silk dome tweeter|
|Woofer material||Dynamic Balance mineral-filled polymer composite cone driver||Bi-laminate organic fiber|
|Frequency Response||60 Hz – 24 kHz||53 Hz – 25 kHz|
|Magnetic shielding||Available||Not available|
|Wireless Connections||Not available||Available|
|Other connections||Binding ports,
|Two banana plugs only|
|Price||Check Price on Amazon||Check Price on Amazon|
Whilst the plethora of similarities may deceive you into believing that these high-quality audio devices are indistinguishable twins, the technicalities suggest otherwise. These speakers are in fact very distinguishable with their unique features that hide within plain sight. Perhaps, it is your sense of hearing that can vouch for this claim!
Polk t15: The absolute epitome of good value
The Polk Audio t15 speakers are perfectly viable as a pair of bookshelf speakers in the best quality on a budget. These excellent audio speakers deliver a substantial audio experience with delicacy and class.
Design and feature overview
These vented two-way speakers come in the color black, giving it a minimal and appealing vibe. The Polk t15 is composed of a half-inch MDF in combination with a wood grain texture surrounded by vinyl. It features a polymer composite dome tweeter and cone woofer, both of which are equipped with the Dynamic Balance technology.
With Polk Audio’s unique Dynamic Balance Drivers and tweeters for wide response and low distortion, the Polk Audio T15s are a group of stereo speakers that deliver incredibly clear ambient soundscapes.
It is equipped with rubber driver sounds that improve both frequency response and durability. To reduce any static distortion, these audio active speakers are designed with magnetic shielding. The overall sound produced by the bookshelf speakers is warm, loud, and with minimal distortion.
Polk tsi100: Modern and effective
The Polk Audio tsi100 offers an elegant exterior combined with an impressive performance that exhibits clean high frequencies and midrange thanks to its unique technologies such as dynamic balance drivers and flared ports. To enjoy an open soundstage with accurate imaging, the Polk tsi100 should definitely be a worthy addition to your sound system.
Design and feature overview
The Polk audio tsi100 comes in two finishes: black and cherry, each design has its unique style. Because of their compact nature, these bookshelf speakers are very convenient to use and set up.
Apart from its appealing exterior, the design features low-frequency drivers and high-frequency tweeters to complement the sound. The silk dome tweeter is built from polycarbonate of exceptional quality which helps to deliver accurate response without distorting the sound.
The speakers perform quite well overall- with balanced, crisp, and enjoyable sound. However, the tsi100 excels in the treble performance with remarkable clarity in tone and perfect precision.
Analyze Comparison: Polk t15 vs tsi100
The sensitivity of an audio device tests the capacity of the speaker to translate volume into electricity and it is measured in decibels (dB). To attain greater volumes, reduced sensitivity speakers need more power from the amplifier, whereas higher sensitivity demands less power.
Hence speakers with greater sensitivity are louder. Usually, any ranking of sensitivity up to 88 dB is lower. The Polk active speakers, therefore do not have much sensitivity and require more power to achieve high volumes.
Peak power measures the maximum power handling capacity of the speaker, that is- it is the maximum wattage a speaker can accept from an amplifier before it burns out. The Polk audio shelf speakers both have a peak power of 100 Watts, which may not be that sufficient. Usually, 300 Watts is considered a good power rating.
Speakers with midrange drivers allow tweeters and woofers to focus on the sound waves they’re best equipped to produce, thus creating a sound that is more accurate. T15 and tsi100 both, however, do not have midrange drivers.
The impedance indicates the electrical resistance provided by the speaker to the power signal by an amplifier. The lower the impedance, the more powerful an amplifier is required to achieve a higher volume of sound. Usually, the most common impedance rating is at 8 ohms, as seen with the Polk t15 and the Polk tsi100, because it works with most of the amplifiers out there.
The most obvious difference among the Polk brothers is its physical design. Since it is slimmer, Polk t15 has a much smaller surface area than Polk tsi100. But perhaps because of its height, some more headroom is required.
The Polk tsi100 is, on the other hand, a very fat, thick, and short speaker. But in general, these two audio boxes are small and lightweight. You should be able to comfortably place them on a desk or a shelf.
The Polk t15 is only available in black, while the Polk tsi100 is available in black and cherry.
The tweeters, which are located at the top of the speakers, produced the highest frequencies in the sound. This frequency is usually about 2000 Hertz. Tweeters can come in different shapes and sizes, the former being more crucial in determining the quality of sound.
Usually, a larger tweeter is louder than a smaller one since it is able to disperse sound over a large surface area. If we compare the tweeter size of the two better quality bookshelf speakers, the Polk tsi100 which is 0.6 cm larger in size than its competitor Polk t15, is definitely at an advantage.
Tweeters can come in four different shapes including: cone, dome, horn, and planar magnetic. The Polk audio t15 and tsi100 have dome-shaped tweeters, which provides the advantage of dispersing the sound across a larger area.
In addition to all these features, the material that the tweeter has been constructed with has a significant impact on how its sound will be emitted. The Polk t15 uses a soft silk composite dome which is mounted in a shallow waveguide.
Whilst the advantage of this is that this composition produces a more natural tonality in sound, it fails to handle enough power. This has been solved in the other model. The Polk tsi100 has what is called “Dynamic Balance” technology instilled in its dome composition, which helps amalgamate materials of highly different resonant behavior so that they damp each other’s resonances for an overall low-resonant composite.
Winner: In terms of tweeter construction, size, and shape it is no doubt that the Polk tsi100 performs better.
The role of the woofer is quite simple- it provides low-frequency sounds and bass. Usually, the bigger a woofer the louder it is. Whilst the woofer size is the same for both the speakers, the material is where it sets them apart.
Woofers can be made from a variety of materials ranging from polypropylene, paper, Kevlar to metal. The ts15 woofer is a Dynamic Balance mineral-filled polymer composite cone driver. The motor section of the woofer is composed of aluminum, which is good for thermal conduction. On the other hand, the tsi100 is composed of bi-laminate organic fiber.
The range of sound a speaker can produce is depicted as the frequency response. Usually, a good frequency response starts at 50 Hz or lower and covers as much of that range as possible.
Winner: When compared, Polk audio t15 seems to cover a wider frequency range at 60 Hz-24 kHz than its competitor Polk audio tsi100, which covers a frequency response of 53 Hz-25 kHz.
When sound is played through a speaker, an electromagnet is activated using the power from the amplifier to bring the driver forward, and another magnet pulls the driver back. This causes the driver to move forward and backward rapidly to create sound. Because of this process, speakers create an electromagnetic field that can cause serious problems for other devices.
Winner: Among the comparison of t15 vs tsi100, Polk audio t15 has the added advantage of magnetic shielding, proving to be the better competitor of the two.
Wireless speaker setups do not need a speaker wire or direct lines to other speakers and the AV receiver and have both their ups and downs. These speakers are not completely wireless through- you’ll still need to plug them into AC outlets for power.
Wireless speakers are typically more expensive. Moreover, there have been complaints of the sound quality being drowning out by the wireless feature by many users. Whilst the Polk audio tsi100 is had a wireless connection, the ts15 bookshelf speaker does not have that feature.
Winner: However, the Polk audio t15 has many other connection points that are lacking in the Polk audio tsi100. Binding ports, speaker wires, and banana plugs are just a few of them.
The price of Polk audio t15 is lower than Polk audio tsi100. Hence if you’re on a budget, the Polk t15 should be your ultimate savior.
Pros and Cons of Polk Audio t15
What’s good about the t15 active speakers? Here are some of the advantages:
- Magnetically shielded drivers
- Wide dispersion over a broad range of area
- Dynamic Balance features incorporated in the drivers
- Wide and detailed soundstage
- Front-mounted bass port
However, there are some disadvantages of this bookshelf speaker:
- Slightly weak sub-bass
- Might have somewhat cupped sound in some recordings
Pros and Cons of Polk Audio tsi100
Now let’s take a look at the pros of the Polk audio tsi100:
- Solid MDF cabinets
- Gold plated 5-way binding posts for secure connections
- Exceptional and rich treble response
- Onboard mounting capability and compactness for saving space
But what are the downsides of these bookshelf speakers? Here are some of the disadvantages:
- Hollow midrange
- Insufficient bass
What should you look for in a speaker?
Before buying a bookshelf speaker, there are certain aspects that you have to keep in mind. Here are some of the features that should help you better decide which speaker to get.
Usually, people have the misconception of “the bigger the better.” Just because a speaker might be bigger in size, does not necessarily mean that it performs better in terms of sound. Moreover, smaller bookshelf speakers are much more convenient to move and set up than bigger ones and they also take up less space.
Sensitivity and Volume
Any reading of sensitivity below 86 dB is often considered to be low and it is advised that for better performing speakers, you should choose ones that have the sensitivity in the range 87 to 95 dB. The higher the sensitivity, the louder will the speaker sound.
Wired vs Wireless speaker
Generally, wireless speakers are more convenient than wired speakers and have more connectivity options. However, some say that wired speakers perform better in terms of sound. But this certainly varies from speaker to speaker.
With the compactness in size, bookshelf speakers have a limited number of drivers which may be a concern for the quality of sound being produced. However, some bookshelf speakers have excellent technology incorporated in their design that helps them to perform meticulously. Hence, before getting any speakers a background check is essential to be made.
Now you might be wondering which speaker is the best for you.
If you are searching for the perfect speakers for your home theatre, the Polk audio t15 which is budget-friendly would be the right choice for you. With a frequency response of 60 Hertz to 24000 Hertz, these remarkable bookshelf speakers are ideal for the loudest screams in thriller movies to the quietest sounds of ASMR.
Not only this, the active t15 speakers feature a tweeter and woofer driver which are designed to include the exceptional Dynamic Balance technology with a maximum sensitivity of 89 dB and handling power of 100 watts. All of these intricate detail of technology is incorporated with style in a compact little black box with meticulous finishing.
Whilst the elegant design speaks volumes for itself, there are other factors of convenience- these bookshelf speakers are really small and lightweight and have built-in keyholes which allow for an easy setup and use.
The Polk audio tsi100, although is a little higher on the budget- has its own magic. These speakers are constructed with high-quality MDF material that gives it a premium feel, finishing off with a black top plate on cherry or black wood.
The choice of materials in designing these audio boxes and the detailed finishing of the exterior is indeed impeccable and makes it stand out. Moreover, the tsi100 also has a wide range of frequency response that ensures the sound being produced is crisp and clean.
However, the Polk audio t15 is a better choice in my opinion. If you are on a budget and looking for something exceptional, the Polk audio t15 bookshelf speakers are easily the most cost-effective and high performing speakers out there.
Although some may say that the bass does not sound as prominent, the wide frequency range, magnetic shielding, carefully crafted tweeter, and woofer- all of these features help the Polk audio t15 to shine.