Edifier S2000 MKIII Review
Based on the previous generation of desktop flagship 2.0 active speakers S2000 Pro and the S3000 Pro version, an improved and upgraded version, S2000 MKIII finally tear off the mystery and meet us.
Before evaluating this latest S2000 MK3 version, we should still take a moment to talk about S2000 Pro first. That can help us better understand the new MK3 version.
S2000 Pro is an important upgrade and revision of Edifier’s flagship desktop 2.0 speakers S2000 in 2016, twelve years after its launch. S2000 Pro uses the flat diaphragm tweeter and 5.5-inch aluminum alloy diaphragm unit developed by Edifier.
Besides, there are also a series of latest audio technologies, such as digital crossover, digital power amplifier, and Bluetooth lossless transmission. Its excellent mid-to-high frequency performance and deep dive low-frequency performance have become one of the most representative works of the Edifier so far.
Appearance and Main Functions
Judging from the appearance of S2000 MKIII, it is no longer what the S2000 Pro looks like. The front panel has no inclination, and the whole color is changed to a dark walnut color, and the whole appearance looks more stable and mature. Its overall style is very similar to the highest flagship of the S series, the S3000 Pro.
The Edifier S2000 MKIII and the predecessor Edifier S2000 MKII are placed together. It can be found that there are obvious differences in the cabinet shape between the two speakers. Compared with the predecessor that used orange-red paint + inclined panels, the new MKIII uses vertical panels. The colors on both sides are deeper and more restrained.
S2000 Pro only uses one LED that changes color (red, blue, green) as a signal indicator. The only indicator light can display very little information, such as which signal source is used (optical fiber or coaxial), what is the current volume (the LED flashes once every time you press the volume button), etc. A single LED cannot accurately represent accurate information.
Now, the new Edifier S2000 MKIII uses a beautiful digital display to replace the original LED light, allowing users to get clear feedback on the screen for every operation/selection. The text is also visually superior to the original LED lights. It should be the best configuration among all Edifier 2.0 and 2.1 speakers. For example, the entire words of the four EQ modes such as “DYNAMIC” and “MONITOR” can be displayed completely, not to mention the input of Line1 and Line2. The font is large enough to see clearly from 3-4 meters away.
The remote control equipped with S2000 MK3 is also upgraded to the latest style. It is the same as the remote control of the Airpulse A300, the advanced speaker of the Edifier. It is relatively more compact and feels good. It is also the most convenient and reasonable remote control for function button operation.
A golden “Hi-Res” logo is added to the cabinet of the Edifier S2000 MKIII. That is because it has passed the Hi-Res high-resolution audio certification. But in fact, I think that the previous generation products also have resolution capabilities of up to 24bit/192kHz. At that time, Edifier did not do the certification. Besides, the manufacturer replaced the previous-generation Bluetooth 4.0 chip with the updated Qualcomm QCC3031 Bluetooth chip, so that the Edifier S2000 MKIII supports aptX-HD transmission. In theory, the Bluetooth sound quality is a step up to the previous aptX!
There is not much special on the back of the speaker. There are two sets of RCA inputs and optical and coaxial S/Pdif digital inputs. Knobs to control the gain of treble and bass, respectively, and the volume knob. The wiring of the main and auxiliary boxes is no different. The connection cable between the left and right speakers of the S2000 MKIII is 5 meters long, similar to the AirPulse series.
Although it is different from the revolutionary influence of the S1000 when it arrived, the S2000 Pro appearance before it went on the market is still very significant. Because the S2000 Pro brings the flat-diaphragm tweeter of Edifier and Phil Jones’ AAD cooperation, the prototype is from Airpulse Silver Reference-1. Has the S2000 MKIII changed this time? The answer is no. It is still the same flat diaphragm tweeter as before.
The mid-woofer speaker uses a 5.5-inch aluminum diaphragm speaker. It adopts a long stroke and long voice coil design. In short, it is a very careful and powerful design. That has been discussed in detail in the past S2000 Pro and Airpulse A series Reviews. Few in the market can have such a configuration at this price.
On the hardware, the digital crossover of S2000MKIII has not changed. Still use two TI TLV320AIC3254 miniDSPs to do a digital crossover. That is the same as S2000 Pro, but different from AirPulse. After AirPulse joins USB, it directly uses the XMOS chip to do the digital crossover task.
The digital power amplifier is also unchanged, with three TI TAS5754M Class D amplifiers for amplification. Use one for the left and right channels for bass and one for the two channels for treble. Since Edifier S2000 MKIII has S/Pdif digital input, it uses PCM9211 chip as digital signal reception. The input signal of the analog signal needs to be converted by an ADC chip, using PCM1802. These configurations and designs are no different from the previous generation products.
The Bluetooth part has changed. Edifier uses Qualcomm’s QCC3031 chip that supports aptX HD this time and supports Bluetooth 5.0 mode. In theory, aptX HD can support a sampling accuracy of 24bit instead of the 16bit of AAC and aptX. But the sampling rate is still locked at 48kHz. From Qualcomm’s information, the code rate after data compression is about 350kbps, which is theoretically better than aptX.
The speaker unit and configuration of S2000 MKIII can be used as a 2.0 sound system in a study or small and medium-sized living room without obvious problems.
Although the appearance of S20000 Pro has been very amazing, the first appearance of the flat diaphragm tweeter is still a bit more special. Compared with silk and metal diaphragm tweeter units, it has a more powerful resolution.
On the one hand, S2000 MKIII’s treble has greatly improved the connection with the woofer’s mid- and high-frequency parts. On the other hand, it makes the whole high frequency sound a lot softer. This soft style is not caused by different sound sources but is indeed a change in the speaker. This soft style makes its sound quality at least one grade ahead of the S2000 Pro product. The advantages of the flat diaphragm are amplified. The calmness of the sound level begins to approach the Airpulse A series’s treble style. Of course, there is still a gap in the limit.
Compared with the S2000 Pro, the S2000 MKIII has a great high-frequency advantage. In the string violin’s performance, the S2000 MKIII has a significantly better high-frequency extension, allowing the whole sense of hearing to remain relaxed and not nervous at high frequencies. This trend is very similar to the ribbon speakers on the Airpulse series. Although the sound of the original S2000 Pro ensures that the high frequency of the flat panel speaker is gorgeous enough at the limit, the distortion is small. However, the speed is still significantly faster, and the sound is still a bit hard. On the S2000 MKIII, its high frequency still has a more relaxed state and a calm and soft listening.
Compared with the aluminum ribbon tweeter of Airpulse A100, S2000 MKIII’s treble limit frequency part of the control is still insufficient, so in terms of the higher treble extension, compared with the A100, there is a tendency to become somewhat stiff. The high frequency of the A100 can be more. It remains loose and delicate under high extension, while S2000 MKIII is a bit tight.
Although S2000 MKIII’s overall high-frequency’s quality is weaker than that of the A100 but compared to its predecessors, it has made great progress with the speakers unchanged.
In terms of mid-range and low-frequency styles, Edifier did not imitate the AirPulse series on S2000 MKIII but maintained the style of S2000 Pro. Although there are four EQ fine-tuning styles, you can still use Monitor or DYNAMIC when listening to music. Compared with the S2000 Pro, the mid-range is well connected, and the performance details of the mid-range, such as the human voice, are greatly enriched.
The vocal performance is no longer introverted but rich in details, particularly soft and stretched style, which is even softer than the Airpulse A100 and A200. The natural connection with the high frequency also brings the human voice’s performance to a higher level. The obvious improvement of the mid and high frequency will make the image of the human voice significantly more fidelity. The dynamic enhancement will also make the sound and hearing more realistic. This fullness comes from an effect brought about by richer layers and better dynamics.
In some exaggerated symphony, movie music, and other auditions, S2000 MKIII shows better dynamics and richer sound levels than S2000 Pro. Although compared with the A100, there is still a gap in the intermediate frequency dynamics under this extreme dynamic. The amount and level of information in the medium and high frequencies are still a bit worse. But compared with its predecessor products, the improvement is also huge and surprising.
The low-frequency design of S2000 MKIII is quite distinctive, with a minimum dive of 45Hz. Under the 5.5-inch speaker such as S2000 MKIII and a small cabinet, the intensity is great. This part of the low frequency is already very, very low. This kind of low frequency below 80 or 60 Hz will only make more things in your home resonate easily, and even the heart will be a little uncomfortable.
The low frequency of S2000 MKIII is significantly better than that of its predecessor. It feels that it is not a speaker of the same level. Since our main comparison is that the A100 has only a 5-inch woofer and a significantly smaller cabinet, the low frequency of the S2000 MKIII is significantly more shocking.
For music appreciation, especially symphony, the S2000 MKIII is still weaker than the A100 and A200 in the mid and low frequencies. After all, their dynamic advantages in the mid and low frequencies are still obvious. In terms of low frequencies such as pop music and movie music, the dive and optimized flexibility of the S2000 MKIII is shocking.
The upgrade of Edifier S2000 MKIII can be regarded as a surprise. It seems that the exterior style continues the design of the S3000 Pro, and all the internal core architecture and components remain unchanged. S2000 MKIII has greatly improved the sound performance through the new tuning, which has a very big advantage compared to the previous generation S2000 Pro. With the speakers unchanged, the mid-to-high frequency performance is significantly richer and an incredibly more relaxed and delicate, which greatly shortened the distance between it and the Airpulse series. The upgrade of S2000 MKIII can be said to have fully explored the potential of this flat-diaphragm tweeter technically, which greatly improved the sound quality of the entire system.
Although the overall sound quality, timbre, and sound field of the S2000 MK3 are balanced and outstanding, the overall mid-to-high frequency and low-frequency connection are also quite natural and smooth. However, if you want it to achieve the quality of those high-end HIFI speakers, there will still be some distance. As a pure HIFI speaker, it is not the best choice.
Fortunately, the S2000 series’ positioning has always been those who are not as picky about the sound quality as HIFI enthusiasts but hope that they can achieve better sound quality when listening to music on the computer, playing games watching big movies. The sound of Edifier S2000 MKIII can be regarded as a rather “high-level” sound in most 2.0 multimedia speakers.
Edifier S2000 MKIII Specs
- Total Power Output: L/R (treble): 15W + 15W RMS L/R (mid-range bass): 50W + 50W RMS
- Signal to Noise Ratio: ≥90dB(A)
- Noise Level: ≤25dB(A)
- Frequency Response: 45Hz ~ 40KHz
- Input Sensitivity: Line 1: 800+/-50mV Line2: 600+/-50mV Bluetooth:450+/-mFFs Optical/Coaxial: 350+/-mFFs
- Connection Cable: 5M/16.4FT
- Digital Audio Signal: Up to 24BIT/192KHz
- Bass Unit: 5.5 Inch Aluminium diaphragm drivers
- Tweeter Unit: Planar diaphragm tweeters
- Finishing: PVC side panels with matte black finish
- Similar Products: S3000 Pro, S2000 MKII