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Cambridge Audio Aero 2 Bookshelf Speakers Review

First Impressions

I had heard a lot about Cambridge Audio products, yet my first foray into their oeuvre was with the Aero 2 bookshelf speakers. From the moment I received them, I was struck by the fact that for ‘bookshelf speakers’, they’re pretty large. When paired with their attractive black finish, they provided a commanding presence. That being said, my main concern wasn’t with their aesthetic appeal, but rather their performance.

The first time I connected them, I must say I was slightly underwhelmed by the initial sound quality. But as other reviewers had mentioned, there seemed to be a ‘breaking in’ period involved. So, I decided to let them play at moderate volumes during my long working hours.

Audio Performance

As an audio system novice, I must tell you, that the Cambridge Audio Aero 2 speakers certainly blew me away with their beautiful detail and clarity. You need not be an audiophile to sense the superior quality of these bookshelf speakers. The feature that caught my attention was how well these speakers managed to keep the sound from distorting at high volumes. The bass is incredibly loud, belying the size of these bookshelf speakers, and yet doesn’t sound harsh in any way.

Right out of the box, I’ll be honest, I wasn’t overly impressed. I had just switched from using Pioneer SP-BS22 speakers, which were fantastic in their own right. However, after allowing these Cambridge Audio Aero 2 speakers to break in for about 30-35 hours, I could already see an improvement. While the sound’s improvement was gradual and not as significant as I had hoped, there was still a distinctive enhancement in the audio quality.


When I compared the Aero 2s with the Pioneer SP-BS22s in a back-to-back comparison, I have to admit, that the Pioneer SP-BS22s seemed to offer a bit more clarity and better imaging. The bass was also somewhat deeper on the former speakers. While the Cambridge Audio Aero 2 speakers can play louder and maintain the bass at higher volumes, it was a bit disappointing not to see any significant enhancements considering the price difference.

Now, I’ve tried a few speaker setups in the past, and the Cambridge Audio Aero 2 blows a lot of them out of the water. For instance, the Klipsch Reference speakers felt too harsh for my liking, while the Aero 2’s sound was smoother and more pleasant to listen to.

Cambridge Audio Aero 2 bookshelf speakers

The Good and The Bad

One of the aspects I loved about these speakers was their clarity. Whether it’s the treble or the bass, the Aero 2s manage to ensure it’s clear, clean, and not harsh at all. They truly sound amazing, with the sound permeating the room beautifully. There’s a certain honeyed smoothness to the audio that came as a delightful surprise.

However, they are not without their downsides. Firstly, the build quality wasn’t up to my expectations. The rubber around the woofers, for instance, were poorly pasted. Within a year, it had already come out, and fixing them back was a task. The size of the speakers was also a bit of a disappointment to me. They were significantly larger than my previous Pioneer SP-BS22 speakers, which was a bit of a letdown.

Pros and Cons


  • Excellent audio clarity
  • Solid bass performance
  • Larger volumes with low distortion
  • Smooth, pleasant sound


  • Bulky design for a bookshelf speaker
  • Poor quality of rubber around woofers
  • Requires significant break-in period for better performance

In Conclusion

Whilst they’re not perfect, these Cambridge Aero 2 speakers have a lot going for them. Provided you temper your expectations and don’t expect to be blown away, these speakers deliver a good enough performance in line with their price tag. They come with both strengths and weaknesses, as you would expect from any product. The kind of raw power they provide, along with a reasonable level of audio detail and an aesthetically pleasing design, are admirable features. Adding the sheer richness and detail of the produced sound into the mix, overall, the Cambridge Aero 2 speakers are a decent purchase.

Bass Response
The Aero 2 delivers a bass performance that is generally acceptable but not without its issues, some users find the bass to be a bit hollow, lacking depth, although others find it clean and low-distortion.
Treble Detail
The speakers' treble detail received mixed reviews. Some found the highs clear and not harsh, while others thought they were quite soft and could use a metallic touch.
Midrange Clarity
The strength of the Aero 2 lies in its midrange, delivering a smooth and clear sound, although not quite the electrostatic-like quality some expected.
When it comes to design, the speakers' aesthetic was generally liked by users, but the build quality didn't impress everyone. Some had an issue with the build quality, mentioning parts like the rubber around the woofers coming off disturbingly easily.
Sound Quality
The sound quality of the Aero 2 has been cited as rich and detailed. However, some pointed out that they were not significantly better than other cheaper models. The speakers' performance improves with a break-in period, according to a few users, but some claim the improvement was not as substantial as they had hoped.
Value for Money
The Cambridge Audio Aero 2 speakers deliver a certain level of quality and performance that some people feel is good for the price, but some others simply don't think they live up to the hype or their cost.
Total Score
Rating Summary
The Cambridge Audio Aero 2 speakers had a slightly mixed bag of reviews. Some were blown away by the sound quality, especially the clean, rich sound and the clear mid-range performance. The speakers took some time to 'break in', apparently getting better the longer they were used. However, other users felt they were somewhat underwhelming, with a few expected better bass depth, extension, and treble detail for the price. From a design perspective, they got some flak for their build quality, specifically, the rubber around the woofers falling off, although it's worth noting these are a small number of instances compared to the overall user base. All in all, the Aero 2's price-to-performance ratio seems to be a bit of a point of contention. Some absolutely thought they were worth their cost, while others were less convinced.