Basic workstation speakers

Anyone have recommendations for speakers to give users for their desktop? Something basic but decent; something that will last but relatively cheap. I’m talking about the $10-20 pair for when someone says they can barely hear sounds from their computer because the CPU with it’s little built-in speaker is under the desk. (If someone wants something fancy, like with a separate subwoofer, I make them pick it out.)

In particular, I’m curious about experience between headphone jack vs. USB. But, if anyone has a specific model to recommend, that would be helpful too. Or, any other related thoughts.


I’ve had decent luck with the Amazon Basics, Creative and Logitech products
that fit this price range. As far as having built in sound cards? They’re
available in this range (like the Creative Pebble
This does add more complexity with the number of audio devices, etc. so I
usually prefer the USB Powered but Analog style (like Amazon Basics Doesn’t need an extra outlet, but uses the
built-in audio device so no confusion on which to select.

None of these are particularly awesome sound quality or earth-shakingly
loud but for a single user sitting at a desk they’re perfectly adequate.
The step-up option is usually something like this AmazonBasics clone of an
old Logitech design

Due to our suddenly heavy use of Teams for meetings I bought a Logitech headset for every desktop. At $30-35 it’s above your range but offers that additional capability of two-way if needed. Plus it keeps the sound private for those in cubicle areas.
I bought the H390 for $27.75 each. USB. OK sound quality. I wouldn’t want to wear them for hours but comfortable enough for meetings.
Purchased from CITN Partner iT1.


I too have had decent luck with the Creative Pebble 2.0 from Amazon:

I’ve bought a few of these: Logitech S150 USB Speakers with Digital Sound
Learn more:

Decent enough sound for general use. Plugs into USB for audio and power; no need for a connection to the computer AUX output. We first found these when we got some SFF computers without 3.5mm audio out jacks.

I use the Amazon basic speakers for those that need speakers. But I also do earbuds and headsets for those that have desks next to other people.

Thanks everyone! Sounds like the USB speakers are a good way to go. Good to know; I’ve never tried those before.

By the way, as for headsets, the moment I realized we would be having to work remotely for a while, I snagged up a small handful of the wired headsets from techsoup. Looks like it would have been cheaper to go with the Logitech, but these are pretty comfortable and have been holding up well.

I’ve chosen to purchase monitors with speakers built-in (HP VH240a), it’s one less thing to clutter up the desk and rob a power connection. They are tiny and quiet speakers, but for workstations in an office environment, that’s what we want :slight_smile: