This review appears in the May issue of PC Advisor, on sale now.

Creative's GigaWorks T20, the latest addition to its family of 2.0 speaker sets, has a lot going for it. Audio fans will admire the elegant highs and rich mid-tones, while the units would add a touch of visual panache to any desktop.

Ideally suited for use with PCs and MP3 players, the speakers capture an impressive amount of detail, bringing new depth to MP3 tunes that had foxed older devices.

Creative promises a lot: cracking audio without the bother of adding a subwoofer to your setup (hence the 2.0 label, rather than the more regularly known 2.1). And the T20 delivers on that promise, cleverly fusing high-end dome tweeters and high-performance mid-range cone drivers to produce audio that's smooth and detailed. Creative's BasXPort technology boosts the bass response admirably, although audiophiles will probably still want to invest in a 2.1 system for added oomph.

A combined output of 28W saw little in the way of distortion when cranked up to 11, with a faint background hiss heard only with poorly encoded MP3s – and this is hardly the T20's fault.

Out of the box you get two speakers, which sport a clean, matte-silver design and brushed-metal controls, plus 2m of stereo-to-stereo audio cable and a less generous 50cm of stereo auxiliary input cable. A dual RCA-to-stereo adapter is included, along with a slim instruction leaflet and a two-year warranty.

Bass, treble and volume knobs are arrayed along the front of the righthand speaker, along with headphone and aux-in jacks. The back reveals ports for audio input and power-in, plus a link-up to the other speaker. Oddly, unlike the rear ones, the front audio ports aren't gold-plated, which seems a little stingy. A slight flaw in an otherwise excellent system.

Creative GigaWorks T20: Specs

  • Two channels
  • 14W RMS per channel
  • frequency response 50Hz~20kHz
  • front controls include on/off/volume, bass and treble
  • front connectors include headphone and aux-in
  • audio input at rear
  • BasXPort technology
  • Two channels
  • 14W RMS per channel
  • frequency response 50Hz~20kHz
  • front controls include on/off/volume, bass and treble
  • front connectors include headphone and aux-in
  • audio input at rear
  • BasXPort technology

OUR VERDICT

Creative's GigaWorks T20 has few faults. Audio fans will savour the added sophistication the speakers bring to MP3, while gamers will thrill to the extra bang for their buck when hooked up to a PC running the likes of Doom3.

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