High performance bookshelf loudspeaker, 5 1/4-inch driver.
7 3/8" W x 12" H x 11 1/2" D
18.73cm W x 30.48cm H x 29.21cm D
Beauty, Performance, Value
The most compact bookshelf speaker in the RTiA lineup sounds phenomenal. Its convenient size and solid performance make it a popular choice for both home theater or music systems. With a 5 1/4-inch Dynamic Balance® midbass driver and a 1-inch Dynamic Balance dome tweeter, it produces the classic Polk sound in a small package.
Stereophile’s Robert J. Reina loved the speaker saying, “I enjoyed every minute I spent with the RTiA1. The speaker’s greatest strengths-the natural and detailed midrange, the excellent bass extension are unheard of at this size and price…” For his full review, click here.
The proprietary curved, 6-layer DAHLI enclosure design creates the optimal shear damping for a more rigid, acoustically inert enclosure and minimal cabinet resonances. RTiA1 cabinets are designed for clean, accurate sound.
Klippel motor optimization uses laser measurement technology to ensure a smooth excursion path at either end of the volume spectrum for uniform performance at both low and high volumes.
Polk’s proprietary, patented Dynamic Balance technology allows our engineers to design out distortion-causing driver and system resonances, so you only hear the good sounds.
Durable, computer-modeled, injection-molded butyl rubber surrounds suppress unwanted cone resonances for a lifetime of reliable sound.
The RTiA Cascade Tapered Crossover eliminates the comb filtering and beaming, common to multi-driver speakers, which degrades the quality of the audio and collapses the soundstage.
PowerPort® Plus bass venting is our patented design for smoothly transitioning the air flow from the port into your listening area, eliminating turbulence and distortion, for bigger, more musical, deep bass impact.
Patented Acoustic Resonance Control® (ARC) technology suppresses cabinet resonance that causes distortion to ensure clear and natural sound.
Beautiful curved furniture-grade hardwood veneer cabinet finishes, with sleek trim accents in black or cherry.
Computer-modeled anti-diffraction grilles enhance the good looks while minimizing sonic interference.
All Polk loudspeakers are timbre-matched within their series, designed with the same components throughout, to achieve seamless speaker-to-speaker blending effects in multi-channel systems.
Dual gold-plated, professional-style 5-way binding posts, for the most secure connection options.
All Polk products are made using the best materials and the most advanced manufacturing techniques. They pass the industry’s most exhaustive quality tests, including drop testing, extreme signal response and UV & salt exposure testing. Polk loudspeakers are built to perform for a lifetime.
|Type||Dynamic Balance silk polymer composite dome tweeter|
|Mid / Woofer|
|Diameter||5 1/4" (13.34cm)|
|Type||Dynamic Balance driver with polymer composite cone and rubber surround|
|Total Frequency Response||50Hz-27kHz|
|Upper -3dB Limit||26 kHz|
|Lower -3dB Limit||60 Hz|
|Nominal Impedance||8 ohms|
|Recommended Amplifier Power||20-125 watts per channel|
|Inputs||Dual 5-way binding posts|
|Width||7 3/8" (18.73cm)|
|Depth||11 1/2" (29.21cm)|
|Mid-High Array Enclosure Type||PowerPort bass venting and Arc Port|
|Product Weight (each)||12 pounds|
|Unit of Measure||Pair|
|Total Shipping Weight||26 pounds|
|Speaker Warranty||5 years parts and labor (original purchaser)|
Specifications, dimensions and features subject to change without notice. For more information call us at 1-800-377-7655 (USA and Canada). Outside of North America call +1 (410) 358-3600.
24 reviews with an average of 5Write your own review
by Bob from Chicago, March 21, 200929 out of 34 people found this review helpful.
Clarity and detail of sound. Close your eyes and you'd think you're at the symphony, or a at a jazz club. Given the quality of the workmanship and the fabulous sound, these speakers are a great deal for the money. You could spend much more and not get better sound.
Some people mention that the bass response could be stronger, but given the size and cost of the speakers, we think it's quite good. Also, there's a knob on the amplifier that says Bass. One can always turn that up a notch or two if one wants more bass.... We don't find these speakers lacking in any way: no weaknesses.
We were looking for a new pair of bookshelf speakers for the living room of our 1000 square foot condominium. Space is at a premium, so the speakers couldn't be large, but we wanted something that both looked and sounded good--with many types of music, that is--all at a reasonable price. We'd seen glowing reviews of the Polk RTiA1s on several websites. Could they be that good? we wondered. Yes, they are that good. We were amazed at how good they sounded when we hooked them up and replaced our old speakers. They are also nice to look at.
by amham, December 23, 200818 out of 21 people found this review helpful.
Clarity of the high-end, smoothness of the middles and tight bass.
I paused a minute to think of a weakness but can't find one given their cost/value.
I've been an "audiophile" for over 35 years and owned many, many high-end components. I've downsize significantly and chose the RTi/A1 for my main, small system. Let me say that I have been totally amazed by the sound/quality/value of these speakers. Startling clarity, smoothness and balance along with a tight, deep bottom end for their size. Speaker technology has come a long way as proven by Polks RTi/A1...highly recommended.
by Doug in Ohio, October 3, 201013 out of 16 people found this review helpful.
The beauty and craftmanship of the cabnets. The clarity of the mid and high frequencies.
Not really a weakness in this price range, but you might like more bass. Just use the bass knob on your receiver and pump it up!
I already owned the RTiA7's so I knew the total quality of the RTiA line of speakers. Understand this is the bottom of the RTiA line. They are bookshelf speakers. But they are probably the best sounding "bookshelf" speakers you have ever heard! I use mine for listening to music powered by a vintage Nakamichi Receiver, 85 watts/channel. WOW! The craftmanship of the cherry wood cabnets is like fine furniture. These speakers are beauties for both the eyes and ears. Buy them, you will not be dissapointed. When you get them home, connect them up to your stereo or home theater system and switch back and forth with your old speakers. You will be amazed. The clarity in the high and mid range is awesome. The bass may be a little weak but adequate. If you want to "rattle the walls" with bass, I suggest you purchase a sub. It will be difficult to find a more pleasing speaker in this price range. So go ahead and give your eyes and ears a treat with this speaker.
by brian burns, November 4, 200912 out of 15 people found this review helpful.
Great sound for the size. Incredible imaging.
I needed new speakers, and I now live in a small condo, so size carries a premium. These speakers are incredible, I listen to them for hours at a time and my ears are never tired. Great bass response, without annoying the neighbors, smooth response throughout the entire range. Friends always compliment these speakers, they are particularly surprised at the sound for the size. I do not regret my purchase of these fine speakers.
by Mike Latendresse, November 15, 20089 out of 14 people found this review helpful.
Highs and mids
for the price and the built quality.....you're kitting...
I got a pair of RTI A7 and a pair of RTI A5 and I wanted more highs to have those trumpets sound to be more agressive. I went to the audio expert shop and they told me that I need super duper silver wiring for a total amount of only 2 000$! i went to the store and bought 2 pairs of RTI A1 and I mounted them on the RTI A7 and RTI A5. The sound is 10 times better than that silver wiring for 3 times less expensive and there was a promo at that period allowing me to get a SUB for free. Who can ask for better! Yesssssssssss...POLK youg got the quality of sound, the right prices and the quality of built!
by Joe, December 28, 20089 out of 14 people found this review helpful.
Great looking and sounding Capable of playing VERY loud, but do well at low volumes Fantastic value
On rare occasions the highs sounded a little harsh (This could be the recording or my room) Not really a weakness, but if used on bookshelves they perform better when given more open space
These little beauties have been playing in my 12x12x8 room for about two months now. In black these speakers are very handsome and in cherry they are sumptuous. Powered by a vintage Tandberg TR 2055 receiver with a twelve year old Denon CDC 425 CD player these speakers sparkle. The sound-stage is holographic and reveals the nuances of each instrument. Highs are crisp, mids revealing while the low end is tight. A ubiquitous PSW 10 fills in the bottom end and was set up following the directions found in the Polk Forum pages under "Bass Management and Sub-woofer Placement".The following music is in heavy rotation... Lucinda Williams - Little Honey The Pretenders - Break Up the Concrete John Coltrane - Live at the Half Note Thelonious Monk - Live at Carnegie Hall S.M.V. - Thunder(Stanley Clark, Marcus Miller and Victor Wooton) Drive By Truckers - Southern Rock Opera John Hiatt - Master of Disaster Little Feat and Friends - Join the Band Grateful Dead - New Years Eve 1976 Grateful Dead - Complete Winterland 1973 Mudcrutch ...and all sound great.
by Noah Adams, July 14, 20099 out of 12 people found this review helpful.
Highs and Mids... very detailed, f.inish is beautiful. Pricing is incredible
With only a 5.25" driver, bass isn't subsonic, but it is incredible for its size. Only on a select few recordings do I wish I had a sub
The RTi A1's are probably the most impressive bookshelf speaker I've ever heard. They're so incredibly detailed, it just blows me away that Polk could do this for the price that they're selling them for. The fit and finish on these cabinets is incredible... The dual ported design seems to be perfect for the 5.25" driver. They will reach lower than you'd think a speaker this size ever could. They rival my SDA 2's with (3) 6.5" drivers per speaker in all but the lowest frequencies. If you were to use these for strictly 2 channel music, I would suggest a sub such as one of the smaller MicroPRO subs. For voice, jazz, classical, and soft rock, these are my speakers of choice. The only time I switch back to my SDA's are when I want to have a little extra bass response. Compared to the RTi's, though, the SDA's are sloppy at best. The RTi's are being driven by the same gear as the SDA's. Hafler DH-110 Preamp, Adcom GFA-545 amplifier, and a Denon DCD-610 CDP.
by Derek, January 13, 20085 out of 8 people found this review helpful.
Great Finish, Great Sound, Great Construction, Great Everything.
I bought the Monitor 30's 2 days ago for my home theater and they sounded amazing. I was also very curious to what these sounded like. (So I bought them just to see if i could tell a difference between the two), hooked them up and was absolutely blown away. Huge difference from the Monitor 30's. I will be returning the Monitor 30's tomorrow and keeping these. Better thanmy dads Paradigm's. Blu-Ray movies have never sounded better. If your thinking about getting these, dont hesitate, get them, you wont regret it!!
by eric, February 3, 20085 out of 8 people found this review helpful.
Incredible clarity, very nice bass.
Fantastic! I bought these to use as front speakers in a surround set-up in my small living room. I was set on buying Klipsch until I compared these alongside them. Even the larger, more expensive Klipsch models could not even compare -they sounded flat and tinny next to the beautiful fullness of the Rti A1. These speakers are truly incredible.
by Ankit, December 28, 20085 out of 9 people found this review helpful.
Crystal Clear Sound. Works excellently as a stereo system.
Needs an additional sub woofer to improvise base sounds in order to get that extra punch.
Though I don't own one of these, I listened to this in one of the Pro FX showrooms in India. These speakers sound so good. The demo that I heard featured some song which had a whistling sound. It seemed as if somebody was playing music right close to my ears. All together it sounds great.
by Tommy Curtin, December 24, 20084 out of 8 people found this review helpful.
excellent sound, build quality, appearance, and value. cannot go wrong!
none at all for the price
I've only been into home theater a few years, started with a panasonic htib which at the time i was very happy with. then i wanted to upgrade. originally purchased a yamaha rec, polk csi a4 center, and a polk psw-10 sub. originally used four old jbl's that my dad let me use and was happy. but then i decided to match everything up and got 2 pairs of these rti a1's. WOW!! loving them! crisp, clear realistic sound, i love how all my speakers come together now. some complain about the bass, ok lets remember that they are bookshelves, but i live in an apt and often listen with the subwoofer off, and can't find why anyone could really complain about that. the bass is deep and responsive, much better than i expected. i highly recommend these speakers!!!
by Jose V, July 12, 20124 out of 7 people found this review helpful.
Small speakers, Beautiful sound, very well build
you will be amazed with their sound and quality!!! I strongly recommend them.
by yoyomon, July 25, 20082 out of 5 people found this review helpful.
None it is what it is and it's perfect at what it's intended to do.
Its Perfect! For my ear and judgement a perfect spot of price to sonics has been found in the RTiA series.
by Tommy Henley, August 29, 20082 out of 8 people found this review helpful.
Quality high and bass. Great material used, good mass with a good desing for propagating waves. Very cool wall mounting desing.
Plastic grating on front who kill the richness and quality of sound. (Removeable with some brain)
After a day of hardly seeking for my lateral wall mounted beautiful speaker, I finally been able to compare many models to this set of speaker. The construction was great (except for is weekness).. good material, natural looking in design for sound, and good mass (which I think is important for deep sound). They also got air vent (which is not the cases of some speaker on market ????? I don't understand this. There's some very interesting features on the back of this speaker.. The air vent is dissipated in a way to prevent the speaker from vibrating on the wall when powerful blast ocur. Very nice lateral speaker. The sound is clear and rich.. I have paired them with Mordant-short Carnival 2 and the sound had more high and quality bass from polkaudio. These other set is also great in design by the way and complete wonderfully well the RTi A1. A minor tweak is necessary though.. The plastic grilled faceplate is absolutely stupid. When you remove it the sound is Sooooooooo much better. so i had to cut it to leave only the small sheet of (nylon?) to cover the speaker.. No difference on look, only sounds better.
by matyeo, February 27, 20102 out of 3 people found this review helpful.
Good bass for only 50hz respond and very clear sound, good finishing wood....
none at this time
i used this speaker as my surround back to complete my home theater set.. main rtia7, surround fxia4 and this one i choose this speaker because it's same spec with my fxia4 and because of good finishing wood.. sound very clear as well and i proud to own this speakers.
by firstname.lastname@example.org, March 16, 20081 out of 2 people found this review helpful.
Clear crisp sound, great look.
Does not produce the deep base sounds consider a subwooffer with them.
Great speaker. Looks great and sounds great. Very clear sound. I would recommend buying an subwooffer in order to get deep base sound, especially if you are replacing old floor speakers with these. It takes a few days to get used to the sound difference.
by Carlos, December 16, 20081 out of 1 people found this review helpful.
Brilliant, uncolored rich sound. Uncompromising.
Once you listen to these, you expect ALL music (music in your car, headphones, other peoples' stereos, etc.) to sound REAL.
I bought these speakers as my mains. I immediately noticed the difference when I swaped them to a Sony "Hi-Fi" shelf system's original speakers for trial. The music is brilliant, lively and spacious. I did use a sub, but the sound was well integrated. When I connected back the original Sony speakers, the music sounded like it was coming from a box! Completely the opposite with the Polks. What have I've missing in music! I can hear the instruments as if it were live! I can't wait to connect them to my Harman/Kardon receiver! As an added bonus, the are beautiful!
by Jose Vejar, November 10, 20090 out of 0 people found this review helpful.
Very well made, excellent sound, small.
Weaknesses? you are kidding right?
Well mister Matthew Polk, you did it again!!! let me thank you for a wonderful product!.These "smal tanks" are breath taken. I am in love with these speakers RTi A1.Beautiful speakers, Well made, excellent sound...Did I mention that I love these speakers?. I know my review is not like many pro that mesure with osciloscope and use fancy terms and words that make these people even smarter lol.But I only trust my ears...and so should you!!! Very well done Polk Audio!
by Billy, June 17, 20100 out of 0 people found this review helpful.
Great sound detail and fast woofer response. The tweeter is smooth and I heard things I have never heard before through many types of music.
Awesome Speakers!!!! WOW!!! I have never heard Bookshelf Speakers the sound as good as these do. It is incredible that 5 1/4" speakers could sound so vibrant. I turned my sub off to see what these speakers could do. I had to take a double check to see if my sub was off. Great Job Polk!!
by Benoit Allard, October 13, 20100 out of 0 people found this review helpful.
Tremendous bang for the buck. Possibly the best budget speaker out there.
None, unless you're into cavernous bass - then you'll definitely need a subwoofer.
I was lucky to get a pair of RTi A1's on sale. My only regret is that the store didn't have the cherry version, whose WAF (Wife Acceptability Factor) is incredible. Still, the black ones look very nice and (I presume) are identical in what really matters - the way they sound. The treble is deliciously detailed and the midrange comes out nice and clear (no small feat for budget speakers). But what I love most about these babies is the bass. Yes, bass. Out of bookshelf speakers. Of course, I'm not talking about big, heart-pounding bass that only a subwoofer can produce. But some wizard at Polk Audio found a way to deliver real bass presence from a 5-inch cone. Turn up the volume, and you can feel it. Best of all, the bass has flavour. Bassoon, double bass, Fender Jazz bass, even kick drums shine in their individuality, and suddenly one finds the generic word "bass" grossly insufficient to describe them all. Combine this with the exquisite treble response, and bands like Rush or The Police, which rely on intricate bass parts and virtuoso drumming, become pure joy to listen to. I'm also impressed with the sonic image. According to the manufacturer instructions, listener and speakers should form an equilateral triangle. Well, as I'm typing this review, the right speaker is about three feet behind me, and the left one a dozen feet further - let's just say the triangle is very, very obtuse. Even at this awful listening position, the Polks are rendering a wonderful image out of Wagner's "Die Walküre" - each instrument and voice is most easy to locate in the aural space. Give the RTi A1's a few weeks to break in, and move them around to find the best placement. Just make sure not to block the back of the units - it's where half of that yummy bass sound comes from! If you're on a budget, I can't think of a better way to upgrade a low-end stereo system. Here's my dirty little secret: I'm harnessing the Polks with a $200 Sony receiver, a portable Curtis CD/DVD player, and my mp3 player. I can't wait to hear what they can do with decent equipment.
by marc Sloan, March 10, 20110 out of 0 people found this review helpful.
SOUND QUALITY AND AS IS THE USUAL BUILD QUALITY IS SPECTACULAR
DO I PUT THE BOSE IN THE FIREPLACE AND HEAT THE ROOM?
Well after completely revamping my main system to LSI15s, and LSIC center, I had a CSI4, that I moved to by bedroom system. The Bose 301,s just did not make it( never did I have come to learn) so with the RTI A 1,s and the CSIA4 and a pair of FXI 3,s I created a wonderful bedroom system.
by Rodney B, September 18, 20110 out of 0 people found this review helpful.
Great finish (Cherry) Compact design, Room filling sound
I didn't have enough for another pair!
After lots o research I bought these from Sound Distributors.com and have had them for a few weeks now. At first they were a little tight but as they are breaking in my my my! Great highs and mids and for the bass, it's pretty good for a bookshelf speaker. I have them hooked up to an old Panny SA-HT280 receiver. I don't have a whole lot of adjustibility , but as soon as I get my Denon Avr 4311 I'm sure these babies are going to sing! I plan on using the as my mains and a set for my rears. My space is limited and Im going for small,efficient, and great sounding and great looking. These fill all my needs to a TEE! Highly recommend !
by Jason, October 16, 20120 out of 0 people found this review helpful.
Imaging, dialogue clarity, appearance, low noise power port, dynamics, power handling. Did I mention APPEARANCE!?
Needs bass support (yes, in small rooms and with music too). To be expected, but plan to use with a sub for full effect.
The RTiA1 is a tremendous product at a very reasonable price. There are a "few" other options worth considering in this price range with various pros/cons, but there are also many choices at this price point and above that don't begin to approach the fit and finish of the RTiA1. Let me first say that I have to agree with most of the reviews in terms of overall build and sound quality - exceptional regardless of price. The only point I would like to raise is the bass issue since the impression I was getting from the reviews prior to purchase was that these can dish out full range sound into the lower registers like a tower speaker might...I even read a review that stated he had to check to see if the subwoofer was on!? After listening for two weeks, my conclustion is that it does in fact take a subwoofer to complete the package. I am a somewhat critical 2-channel audio listener first, and a home theater viewer second. I listen to a wide variety of music and strive for faithful "full range" reproduction of recordings. Some people seem to think that music doesn't require full bass reproduction, but there is plenty of action in the sub-100Hz and even sub-50Hz range in most music. It is always best to test things for yourself in your own space with your own gear, so I ran these full range on stands with power coming from an NAD C326BEE integrated amplifier. I tried placement against the wall and 24" out into my smallish room (roughly 8' x 12') to test bass response. Vocals and acoustical music were phenomenal (especially when placed into the room) - period. There IS lower bass "presence", but very little IMPACT...which is to be expected from this size speaker/driver. In Enya's Watermark recording, there is a descending bass sequence into the 20-30Hz range that completely vanished without the help of a sub. Again, that is to be expected with a bookshelf speaker, but music does indeed contain low frequency content below the usable range of this speaker and you WILL need a sub to reproduce it. The addition of a modest sub I had on hand (AudioEngine's S8) filled in the low end nicely and transformed these into a terrific full range sub/sat system. It seems that you could achieve even greater output in a bigger space with a larger subwoofer as the RTiA1's seemed to be willing to go on beyond the limits of the S8. In short, these are terrific speakers and a great buy for the price...just don't expect them to compete with Polk's towers in terms of "full range" fidelity without a subwoofer. Even in a small room and moderate listening levels, the sub adds much needed depth and realism. I would suggest trying an A/B (sub / no sub) with a familiar recording to see if you notice any "missing content". Aside from the that, my guess is that you will be very satisfied with this little gem. Happy listening!
by Jose V, February 24, 20130 out of 0 people found this review helpful.
Build quality and sound!
if you find one...let me know!
These speakers are a treat for your ears! you will not find better bookshelf speakers at this price and quality! You can see and hear the quality of these speakers no matter if you play your music at low or high volume! What are you waiting for?...stop reading and go get these Polk RTi A1.
View all Professional Reviews
" I enjoyed every minute I spent with the RTi A1...the natural and detailed midrange, the excellent bass extension—are unheard of at this size and price, and its minor deviations from neutrality have been so carefully thought out and balanced that I wanted to mine my entire record collection...its gorgeous real-wood veneer will not only satisfy the non-audiophile spouse, but will impress your friends, who will think you've spent more money than you have...
[ Open Review ]
"The Polk RTi A1 is probably the most well thought-out and elaborately constructed speaker in the budget genre. It earns top marks for both build quality and value. If you’re looking to mate a set of speakers with a sub-$500 A/V receiver, the RTi A1 is a logical choice..."
[ Open Review ]
"...I was eager to hear if the RTi A1 system’s performance would match its outstanding build quality, and I wasn’t disappointed...the RTi A1s did an excellent job of conveying intensity, displaying surprisingly good dynamic range and decent midbass punch for such small speakers...
Polk Audio has built another quality product at an affordable price. The RTi A1s not only looked brilliant in their real-wood veneer, they offered plenty of detail, control, and excellent dynamics, which all came together to reproduce multichannel source signals with an invitingly three-dimensional soundstage..."
[ Open Review ]
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Frequently Asked Questions
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