Kanto YU2 Review: How Well do They Perform?
This Kanto YU2 review will provide all the information you need about these desktop computer speakers.
Kanto produces a wide range of different speakers from computer speakers, bookshelf speakers to larger audio systems. The Kanto YU2 speakers might be quite small but as we’ll find out, they do produce decent sound.
We’ll look at the core features of the YU2 speakers, their pros and cons and also find out if there are any alternatives out there.
- 1 Key specifications of Kanto YU2
- 2 Core features of Kanto YU2
- 3 How do the Kanto YU2 speakers perform?
- 4 Pros of Kanto YU2 speakers
- 5 Cons of Kanto YU2 speakers
- 6 Are there any alternatives?
- 7 Frequently Asked Questions about Kanto YU2 Speakers
- 8 Final thoughts – some limitations and a bit pricey, but the Kanto YU2 speakers offer great performance.
Key specifications of Kanto YU2
You can find the main specifications for the Kanto YU2 speakers below.
|Total Power||100W Peak Power (50 Watts Total RMS)|
|Frequency Response||80 Hz – 20 kHz|
|Other connections||3.5mm Mini-jack AUX, USB DAC, Subwoofer out|
|Dimensions||3.9 x 5.3 x 5.9 inches|
|Latest price||Click here for latest price|
Core features of Kanto YU2
The Kanto YU2 speakers are designed to sit alongside your computer, hence the small size. While they don’t have the overall functionality of larger speakers, such as the Kanto YU5, they do still pack a punch with their core features.
Despite not being the largest set of speakers on the market, they still manage to emit a very good sound quality.
These speakers have a 100W Peak Power (50 Watts Total RMS) and a frequency response of 80 Hz – 20 kHz. Compared to many other desktop computer speakers, you can really notice the difference with the YU2’s.
Even playing music at high volumes didn’t create much noticeable distortion. The bass is great with no buzzing and these are really ideal speakers for small rooms. In fact, we would say that you’d be lucky to find better quality speakers in terms of the sound in the same price range.
It doesn’t seem to really matter what music genre you are playing through these speakers because they all seem to provide a crystal clear sound.
Unlike some other Kanto speaker sets, the YU2’s don’t have a ton of different connectivity options.
While their predominant focus is as desktop speakers for your computer, they could do with some additional connections. For example, there is no Bluetooth which you get with some of the other Kanto models.
What the YU2 speakers do have is a standard 3.5mm Mini-jack AUX as well as a USB DAC connection. The USB DAC is a nice addition and it certainly helps with the overall sound quality being so high.
There is also a subwoofer out the connection if you wish to add one. This can really help to boost the bass and sound of the YU2 speakers as well. You won’t find a headphone out port which is a bit of a downside.
They also can’t be controlled remotely however there are plenty of other Kanto options out there if that is the kind of functionality you need.
One of the defining features of Kanto speakers is their design. You’ll be hard-pressed to find better-looking speakers than those Kanto produce and the YU2’s are no different.
They have a kind of understated elegance about them. The YU2 speakers come in a range of styles and colors. This ranges from matte black to gloss red with natural bamboo in there as well. If aesthetics are your thing, the walnut color scheme is gorgeous.
These speakers are quite heavy even with their small size but this helps with their solid build and overall durability.
Taking out the sound quality and performance completely, and these speakers are a great piece of kit to have based on their looks alone.
Easy to set up
Another good feature of the Kanto YU2 speakers is that they are very easy to set up.
They aren’t as complicated as some other speaker sets. You can simply plug and play and as there are no wireless or Bluetooth connections, you don’t need to worry about hooking them up digitally.
Everything is clearly labeled with these speakers and it is quite hard to go wrong with the connections. There is a handy and easy to reach volume knob on the back.
Given their small size, it isn’t surprising that these speakers are easy to use and all the controls are within reach and straightforward to operate.
It is easy to add a subwoofer as well if you wish to enhance the sound even more but setting these speakers up is basic and anyone can do it.
The Kanto YU2 speakers come with a 2-year warranty.
This is fairly good and you’ll find speakers out there that don’t offer 2 years. Even though you will find some that perhaps have a longer warranty, so a set of desktop speakers for your computer, 2 years is generally fine.
How do the Kanto YU2 speakers perform?
As we mentioned above, the Kanto YU2 speakers offer great performance and sound quality.
You’ll likely notice a difference when connecting via USB DAC over the 3.5 mm AUX however both connections offer great performance. This is something we associate with Kanto. Even their small speakers like the YU2’s tend to always perform very well and we were not disappointed with these.
The bass is deep and the high notes are clear. There isn’t any noticeable distortion or buzzing at higher volume levels either. Different music genres all perform very well and we weren’t left disappointed with any of the sound that came from these speakers.
You can add a subwoofer if you really want to produce a deeper sound. It might be an idea if you want these speakers to perform beyond a basic computer setup.
You’ll no doubt find speakers around the same price that do offer more bass but that can be easily fixed with a subwoofer addition. That being said, the actual bass isn’t bad at all.
Overall there isn’t too much to say about their performance.
We were expecting good things and the YU2’s delivered.
Pros of Kanto YU2 speakers
We do rate these speakers and these are the best bits about the YU2’s.
This is perhaps the main thing about the YU2’s – alongside the design. The sound quality is fantastic at all volume levels. Whatever music genre you are playing you’ll find the performance very good with these speakers. You can add a subwoofer if you wish and even without one, these speakers work well in small spaces. Audiophiles love these and we can really see why.
Easy to use
They are pretty much the definition of plug and play. There aren’t any complicated parts to these speakers and due to the limited number of connections, you don’t need to worry about Bluetooth or wireless connectivity problems. Overall they are very easy to set up and get working in no time at all.
If sound quality is first and foremost with a set of speakers, the design comes a close second, Simply put the YU2’s are lovely looking speakers. Whether you go for a plain matte black or gloss white or if you fancy walnut or something else, these speakers will look good. They are small, well built and they look great wherever you put them.
The connections on offer can be looked at as both a positive and a negative. On the one hand, the limited amount makes these speakers very easy to use and on the other it can limit your options (see below). However, we do think that a simple plug and play connection makes these speakers very user friendly.
You get a 2-year warranty with the YU2 speakers. This is fine and should be adequate if you run into any problems with them.
Cons of Kanto YU2 speakers
There are a couple of drawbacks with the Kanto YU2 speakers.
Good speakers aren’t necessarily inexpensive in general and it is one of those things that you kind of get what you pay for. That being said, the YU2 speakers are definitely more at the pricier end of the spectrum when it comes to desktop speakers to plug into a desktop or a laptop.
You won’t need to remortgage your house to buy them but for many people they might be a bit beyond a quick impulse buy.
We said above that this can go either way. While they do make set up easier, the lack of connections beyond 3.5mm and USB DAC does limit the overall functionality.
There is no Bluetooth or other kind of wireless connection. There also isn’t any remote control although these are desktop speakers for computer use after all. You can make your own mind up if this hampers you or not but you need to go further up the Kanto line to find speakers with more varied connection types.
No headphone output
This is something that we have come across a few times with Kanto speakers. With no headphone output connection you can’t plug headphones in unfortunately and this is a fairly big downside for some people.
Are there any alternatives?
The Audioengine A2+ speakers are a model that is worth considering if you decide that the Kanto YU2’s aren’t for you.
They are desktop speakers that are in and around the same price range. They have the benefit of coming with wireless connectivity including Bluetooth so this puts them ahead of the YU2s right away. The sound quality with these speakers is very good indeed and not many people have complained about the performance.
They are a bit limited in style – they come in 3 colors, black red and white – so if aesthetics are something you care about, this is a bit of a downside to these speakers.
However, what they lack in style options they make up for with everything else. The aforementioned range of connectivity options – they also have mini stereo, RCA and USB input with a subwoofer output – in addition to the sound quality makes them a very good set of speakers.
The Audioengine A2+ speakers are slightly bigger than the YU2’s so it is something to take into consideration if you are really tight on space. That being said, these speakers are ideal for desktop and come with a high level of functionality as well as great sound quality.
Bose Companion 2 Series
If the Kanto YU2 speakers and the Audioengine A2+ are a bit out of your price range, the Bose Companion 2 Series might be more suitable.
They do come in a good bit cheaper than the YU2’s and A2+ so for the budget conscious they are a very good alternative.
These speakers are limited a bit by their overall functionality. They only come in one color and compared to the other speakers we’ve looked at here, they do look a bit plain looking. You won’t get the sophisticated walnut of the YU2’s or the elegance of the A2+, but I suppose you get what you pay for.
When it comes to performance we can’t really say too much bad about the Bose Companion 2 Series. The sound quality is actually pretty decent and better, admittedly than what we were expecting. You aren’t getting anything that will completely blow your world however they put in a great shift across several music genres.
These speakers are limited somewhat but their connectivity – they only offer two AUX-in connections – but for a basic set of speakers this is all you can expect.
Overall they aren’t transforming the desktop speaker market but for the price, they offer good performance and are ideal for a budget setup.
Frequently Asked Questions about Kanto YU2 Speakers
Answer: No, there is no remote control with these speakers. The Kanto YU5 speakers do come with remote control if that is a function that you really need.
Answer: These speakers are quite compact so will fit nicely on a computer desk or in a small space. They measure 3.9 x 5.3 x 5.9 inches.
Answer: Yes. There is a subwoofer out connection with the YU2 speakers so if you do wish to add a subwoofer you can do so.
Answer: Yes. There is a 2-year warranty with the Kanto YU2 speakers.
Answer: They don’t have a headphone out connection so you can’t use headphones as standard with these speakers. There are options to get this functionality but for beginners, it can seem a bit complicated.
Answer: Yes. As they have limited connections and everything is clearly labeled on the back of the speakers, they are easy to set up and get started.
Final thoughts – some limitations and a bit pricey, but the Kanto YU2 speakers offer great performance.
If you are in the market for some desktop speakers for your computer, there is a lot to like about the Kanto YU2 speakers.
They do have some drawbacks.
Their limited variety of connections means no Bluetooth or remote control so using them beyond plugging them into your computer isn’t realistic. They also don’t have a headphone out connection and some people might find them a bit expensive.
Looking beyond that and these speakers are a very good purchase.
The sound quality is what we have come to expect from Kanto – high quality. Even without adding in a subwoofer, these speakers perform great and the sound quality is fantastic for speakers that are so small. They are compact and will fit nicely on a computer desk. The aesthetics are fantastic and there are many styles to choose from.
They might not be suitable for larger spaces to be used beyond a computer setup but for what they are designed for, we really have no complaints.
For anyone that has a little bit of money to spend and wants speakers that look good, sound great and are easy to get started with, look no further than the Kanto YU2’s.