JBL Stage A120 Review

3.36 Mixed Usages
3.3 Dialogue & Vocal Accuracy:
3.4 Treble Accuracy:
3.5 Bass Accuracy:
3.3 Imaging & Soundstage:
3.3 Dynamic Range:
Release year: 2018 Rating: 4.6 Warranty: 5 years 1" aluminum tweeter 4.5" Polycellulose woofer High Definition Imaging (HDI) waveguide desktop speaker surround speaker

JBL Stage A120 is an affordable pair of stereo speakers that you can use as 2.0 setup or as surrounds. It is best for users who want to enjoy music in tight spaces. The speakers have great clarity and is powerful compared to its compact size. Use them for near field listening allowing the speakers to shine. It has clearer highs and enjoyable bass for small spaces.

Our Verdict

JBL is a reliable and trustworthy brand, and the A120 is the example of it. It is the smallest speaker in the JBL Stage series. It has good build quality; the design is standard and the price is low. If you already own an amplifier, them you can easily save some bucks. The speakers produce clean sound even at high volume. It has precise highs, smooth mids and decent bass.

  • Compact size
  • Stylish
  • Good as surrounds
  • Rear port to enhance bass
  • Reasonable price
  • Need additional amplifier
Where to buy



Speaker Type Bookshelf Speaker
Number Of Channels 2.0 way speaker
Amplification Type Passive Speaker (External Amp)
Power Source AC Powered


Drive Unit 2x2
Tweeter Type Aluminum
Tweeter Size (inches) 1
Midrange Size (inches) n
Midrange Type N/A
Woofer Size (inches) 4.5
Woofer Type Polycellulose


Power Range 20 – 125W
Sensitivity 86dB @ 1M, 2.83V
Impedance 6 Ohms
Frequency Range 60Hz – 40kHz
Crossover Frequencies 3.2kHz


Speaker Level Input N/A
Speaker Wire Input: Yes
Line Level Input N/A
Digital Input (Optical) N/A
Digital Input (Coaxial) N/A
RCA Input N/A
3.5mm Stereo Analog Input N/A
Aux Input N/A
HDMI Input N/A
Bi-amp Input: N/A
USB Port N/A
Subwoofer Output N/A


Bluetooth N/A
Wi-Fi N/A


Connector Type 5-way post
Compatible Connector Types bare wire (up to 10AWG), pin-connectors, spade-lugs and banana plugs (single or dual)
Speaker Wire Compatibility 12 or 14AWG


Bass Accuracy: Decent and average bass.
Dialogue & Vocal Accuracy: Clear vocals
Treble Accuracy Crisp and clear highs
Imaging & Soundstage: Good imaging and decent soundstage
Dynamic Range: Decent dynamic range
Power Handling: Good power handling
Frequency Response: Wide frequency response
Transient Response: Decent transient response


Enclosure Ported
Finish MDF
Color Black


Height (inches) 11.22
Width (inches) 6.69
Depth (inches) 6.69
Weight (pounds) 19.55 lb
Recommended Stand Height (inches) 26-28


Handheld Remote N/A
Control by app N/A
Amazon Alexa N/A
Google Assistant N/A


Accessories: A pair of JBL Stage A120 Compact Bookshelf Loudspeaker, Owner’s Manual, Warranty Card, 8 x Feet Pads, 2 x Foam Plugs, 4 x Wall Brackets 8 x Screws for Wall Brackets
User manual: Yes
Where to buy

Details Review


The A120 belongs to the JBL Stage lineup. Build quality is quite good with rigid walls. With internal bracing, the cabinet will minimize any sort of resonance or vibration. It comes with four key holes so that it is much easier to mount it on walls. Place them at least 20” from rear and side walls.

The speakers come with self-adhesive rubber feet that ensure stability as you place them on flat surface. Protect the speakers by covering them with detachable cloth grille.


JBL Stage A120 is a 2-way bookshelf speaker that has 1 tweeter and 1 woofer. The tweeter is in placed in High Definition Imaging Waveguide (HDI) so that the transition between high- and low-frequency drivers are smooth. Low ends are clean and deep. Highs are crisp and clear, mids are decent. A rear port boosts it further and comes with a foam that you can plug inside the port. We suggest going for a subwoofer to improve the sound.

With an impedance of 6 ohms, the speaker isn’t very easy to drive. Match the power and impedance while choosing an amp. We suggest to use them as surrounds instead of stereo system. Although the experience will vary from user to user, using them as stereo might ‘feel’ weak. That said, they will deliver amazing performance if used as desktop speaker for near field listening.

Place it on bookshelf, table or stands. Or, simply mount it on the wall by following step by step instruction in the manual. While using them as surrounds, place them around 6 ft. above the floor. If you are using them as surrounds, keep them 3-6 ft apart. These speakers can also be used as front stereo system.

Connectivity and control:

Inputs, outputs and control options depend on the amp you choose.

Use case:

Place them in small to mid sized spaces and experience room filling audio. It is good for general listening so go for a sub in small rooms for listening to music. In large spaces, create a theater system.

Compatible device:

Connect a matching amplifier like Denon PMA600, Yamaha RS-202, Onkyo TX-8220, Pioner SX 727, or any model from other brands. Create a home theater with floorstanding loudspeakers (A170/A180/A190), bookshelf loudspeakers (A130), center channel loudspeakers (A125C/A135C) , and powered subwoofers (A100P/A120P).


JBL Stage A120 is a budget friendly passive bookshelf speaker.


What is ‘break-in’ in speakers?

Break-in period in speakers means playing them for long hours so that they can produce optimum performance. Play the speaker for hours that can continue for days so that the drivers get ‘loosened up’ and play with full potential. Like others, allow the JBL Stage A120 to go through break-in.

Are JBL Stage A120 placement flexible?

JBL Stage A120 is easy to place but aren’t quite placement flexible as they have rear ports. This means you should leave gap behind the speaker to get good performance.


Where to buy


Select Two Audio / Video System for Detailed Comparison


Find Your Sound System by Any Desire Specification

similar Product Reviews

Audioengine A2+ Plus

Design: Audioengine A2+ is a set of wireless speakers but needs connection between two of them. Build quality is quite good with MDF. It has internal bracing to minimize any vibration. Sound-damping material is used that eliminates any refection within the speaker. It doesn’t have any grille to protect the drivers. The speaker is video shielded so you can place it near any video monitor. Performance: Audioengine A2+ has woofer and tweeter in it. It is suitable for music, movies and games. Voices are crystal-clear and the soundstage is good. It can deliver natural sound that is closer to the original recording. Bass is quite good and remains enjoyable for most contents. In case you are a bass head, an external subwoofer is best for you. On the front side of the speaker there is a thin horizontal slot port. For better bass, place it near walls. That said, low ends are excellent for a desktop speaker. Along with music, this speaker is ideal for PC gaming. Use the speaker stands to tilt them so that the tweeter is at user ear height. This is needed for optimized listening experience. It shows rich and detailed performance. Audiophiles will be impressed with it. Connectivity: It is versatile in terms of connectivity. Wired connection options are plenty. You can connect gaming devices, CD player, turntable, or TV with RCA ports. It supports external subwoofer with RCA out port. Bluetooth connection remains stable within a long distance of 100ft. Wireless connectivity is easier and hassle free. You can stream contents from different music services. For USB, it has an old micro-USB port but that’s not an issue as the speaker includes a micro-USB to USB cable. Use Case: Audioengine A2+ is best for small spaces. It is designed to use as desktop speaker with your PC or laptop. It can also replace soundbars in small rooms as it connects to PC as well. Compatible Devices: In case you want to connect wired headphones, then use a headphone amp with the speaker. For subwoofer, you can go with the Audioengine S8. Or, choose from other brands like MartinLogan, Pioneer, Polk. The audio output has variable stereo preamp. This means you can connect powered subwoofer or compatible active Audioengine speakers. You can also connect Audioengine wireless adapter (772W3) in order to pair with other sound systems. Other devices like Google Home Mini can be paired with the speaker via Bluetooth. Ease of use: The speaker has very easy setup that will take few minutes to complete. doesn’t come with any mobile app or remote control. The control options like volume button is located on the rear side so it might be a bit difficult to reach it. It also doesn’t have any option to switch between inputs. When connected to PC, it will easily work with any need of additional software or app. Cost: This desktop speaker isn’t very cheap. It is a mid-priced speaker and the cost will increase if you purchase speaker stands and a subwoofer.   FAQ: Are bookshelf speakers good enough? Active bookshelf speaker come in different sizes. Large bookshelf speakers with larger drivers can deliver powerful room-filling sound. They can be loud enough for most rooms. When paired with subwoofer, the audio regains its sweet spot. Is Audioengine A2+ a good speaker? Audioengine A2+ is an excellent wireless active bookshelf speaker. It shines in terms of performance and features. You are free to connect different types of devices. It can be used in home or office rooms.
-Read More

Edifier R1280DB Bluetooth Bookshelf Speaker

Design: Edifier R1280DB are a pair of good-looking speakers. They are a bit larger than PC speakers but smaller than regular sized bookshelf speakers. The drivers are covered by dustproof speaker grille that displays a bright silver line in the middle. There is a LED light on the speaker that indicates power, Bluetooth or input. The wooden cabinet ensures resonance-free sound. Performance: The driver material is chosen in such a way that it produces natural sound quality. Beside the drivers there is a single bass port in each speaker. This means you can place it very close to walls without worrying about bass performance. It can produce detailed and balanced sound. Voices are loud and clear. From classical music to movie watching, the speaker can handle all types of contents pretty well. Along with streaming contents, you can easily pair it with a mid-sized TV. It matches well with 27” screen sizes. While placing it on desktops tables or shelfs, you can use the 7 Inch Desktop Speaker Stands for Mid-Size Bookshelf Computer Speakers or 36” stands. Edifier R1280dB is one of the best bookshelf speakers under $150. It delivers balanced sound with well-defined low ends. The Class D power amp ensures the speaker performs bigger than a desktop speaker. It sounds bigger than any entry-level 2.0 speaker. Overall, it shows solid performance compared to its size.  Connectivity: It is easy to connect several devices to the speaker and switch between them. We love how the speaker includes all necessary cables. Use the RCA to 3.5mm cable to connect mobiles or tabs to the speaker. You can connect TV or CD players to the speaker via optical port. Bluetooth shows stable performance and you can connect any Bluetooth enabled device including mobile, laptop, etc. Use Case: Edifier R1280DB is ideal for mid-sized rooms. You can pair it with PC or TVs. It can produce room-filling sound in small rooms. It is versatile so you can easily connect it to turntables or iPhones. This set of speakers is ideal for new music producers and DJs.  Compatible Devices:  Since Edifier R1280DB is an active speaker with built-in amp, it doesn’t support additional amplifier. It doesn’t have any sub out either. That said, we suggest you to listen the speakers for once because it is unlikely to need a subwoofer. In case you are picky about low ends, choose the Edifier R1850DB that has sub out port. Ease of Use: Use the included remote control where you can choose inputs, initiate pairing for control volume. Physical controls are also available on one side of the remote so they are easily reachable. There are bass, treble and volume controls. We love how it allows us to tweak the sound. to switch inputs, use the volume knob on the speaker. Cost: Edifier R1280DB is a budget-friendly bookshelf speaker that offers you enjoyable listening experience. Even at this low price you get additional features like remote control, EQ controls and several connection ports. FAQ  Is there is audio lag issues in Edifier R1280DB? Edifier R128DB produces sound without any audio lag. You can easily stream content and enjoy them. Can I add turntable to Edifier R1280DB? You can easily add turntable with built-in preamp to Edifier R1280DB.  
-Read More

Klipsch Reference R-51M Bookshelf Speaker(Pair)

Design: Klipsch R-51M has the signature copper spun drivers. The design is stylish and MDF body minimizes any resonance. Acoustically transparent grilles are available so you can cover them up if you have pets in the house. Build quality is good and feels durable. The design, material and finish work together to give good sonic accuracy. It sits on included rubber feet that eliminates any surface vibration. Performance: Klipsch R-51M is one of the best bookshelf speakers under $150. Tractrix horn technology in Klipsch ensures sound doesn’t get colored with unwanted reflection or reverberation. It delivers clarity and richness in sound. The drivers are chosen to maximize efficiency resulting in pure form of audio. It can produce sound with less distortion and better dynamics. Horn technology in Kipsch deliver clean, detailed and lively sound. It has rear-firing port that minimizes any turbulence in the lower frequencies. As you rise the volume up, the sound remains pure and uncolored. The speakers produce clearer voices, instrumental sounds are well-represented. It is easy to drive with almost any amp. That’s why along with standard amplifiers, tube amps that have low power can also be used with this speaker. You can add Klipsch subwoofer or choose from another brand like the Pioneer Elite SW-E10. In terms of placement, place the speaker such that the tweeter remains at your ear level. The user manual gives a detailed image about speaker placement showing where to place center, sub and other speakers in a theater. If you are using it as front speakers, place them 6-12’ apart. For surround or rear speakers, place them 5-7’ above floor. Since it has port in the rear side, you need to keep some space from the wall allowing the speaker can breathe. There is no option for wall mounting. Klipsch R-51M has great imaging and dynamics. It is a powerhouse; the cost is reasonable and it is word buying. Connectivity: Since this is a set of passive speakers, the connectivity of the speaker depends on the amplifier you use. It has single gold-plated binding posts. You can perform Bi-amping and Bi-wiring with it. Use case: Klipsch R-51M Reference speaker is best for small to mid-sized spaces. You can use it for 100sq. ft to 100-220 sq. ft room sizes that has an average floor height of 9". The compact size make it easier to place it on shelves or table tops. Compatible device: You can create home theater system with the R-51M. Connect Klipsch R-51M with R-100SW subwoofer, floorstanding speakers (R-610F/R-620F/R-820F/R-625FA), bookshelf speakers (R-41/R-51M), center channel speakers (R-34C/R-52C), and one Dolby Atmos speaker (R-41SA). As long as you match the impedance and power, the speaker is easy to drive with an amplifier from any brand. You can connect it with douk/nobsound amps, Sonos amp, Aiyima T-9 tube amp, Eico tube amp, etc. This speaker has best value for money. Ease of use: Klipsch R-51M doesn’t have any remote control. It is a passive speaker that connects to an amp and then you can easily control it. FAQ: Are Klipsch speakers any good? Klipsch is a well-known and reliable brand. Although it is known to produce ‘too bright’ sound, Klipsch already fixed this issue. Klipsch speakers are excellent in terms of performance and features. The cost is reasonable as well. How to improve Klipsch R-51M performance? Along with choosing the best amplifier, to enhance the performance you can add a subwoofer to the Klipsch R-51M.
-Read More