Whether you consume a lot of media or enjoy gaming without a headset, investing in a good set of PC speakers can make your experience a little better.
Fortunately, you're not short on choice, but what we have here is something that should undoubtedly be on your shortlist. Creative makes superb quality PC audio products, and the Pebble Plus takes the company's cutesy looking Pebble speakers and juices them up a little.
And if you're tight on budget or space, they're particularly noteworthy.
Bottom line: They may look cute, but these speakers aren't only stylish they pack a lot of punch for not a lot of money
- No external power required
- Passive subwoofer included
- Great sound quality
- Attractive price
- Downward firing subwoofer needs to be on carpet
- Cables are a bit messy
What you'll like about the Creative Pebble Plus
Let's start with the price. The Pebble Plus can be had for under $40, and that alone makes these speakers attractive. But despite coming with a low asking price, build quality hasn't been compromised. The plastics feel tough, there are chunky rubber grips beneath each speaker, and the subwoofer box is both light and solid at the same time.
That's right; the Pebble Plus comes with a subwoofer. For under $40.
Essentially the subwoofer is what makes this the Plus. The speakers, as good as they are, already come in a package on their own for around $20. But it's the subwoofer that really makes it.
The entire package has two modes. The regular 5W RMS mode, which produces good volume, a pleasant, warm sound and impressively, requires only USB power. There's also an additional high gain mode which bumps up to 8W RMS, but for this, you'll need to provide external power with a 5V 2A power brick.
The external power requirement ensures that no sound quality is lost while bumping the output, but unless you like things LOUD or have a larger room you want to fill with sound, the normal mode is going to be absolutely fine. Even then, you're able to get some pretty serious volume without any loss in clarity. In a smaller office like mine, they're perfectly capable of delivering face-melting metal at volume.
The Pebble Plus is well designed, too. The addition of the subwoofer provides just enough bass to round off the sound nicely, while the speakers are angled at 45-degrees, so they're blowing the sound upwards towards your ears.
What you'll dislike about the Creative Pebble Plus
The good news is that there are no dealbreakers with the Pebble Plus for anyone. These speakers are tremendous. But there are still a few points you might find an issue with.
The first is that the subwoofer fires downward. In my office, that's not a problem, because I have a carpeted floor, but if you were hoping to put it on a hard surface, you'll be disappointed. That's not a knock at Creative's quality; it's just the nature of how sound behaves. Ideally, I'd have liked to stash the subwoofer on one of the shelves beneath my desk where usually a desktop rig would sit, but it had to go on the floor.
Again, not a dealbreaker, but cause for thought if you're limited to hard surfaces around your PC.
The front of the speakers has no grill, not even an optional one, which I don't mind myself, especially since the splash of gold on the drivers looks pretty nice. But some might lament the omission. A more significant source of annoyance is the messy cables.
Every cable you need comes pre-attached to one of the speakers, and they're easy to get tangled up and make cable management more of a chore. You do at least get a good distance between the two speakers, but you'll want to do your cable management before you plug anything in.
Should you buy the Creative Pebble Plus?
If you're shopping for PC speakers, then the Creative Pebble Plus should definitely be on the shortlist. Even if you're not particularly looking for budget speakers, these are very good. The design is excellent, the subwoofer adds just the right amount of punch, and you get a lot of volume without worrying about distortion.
The negatives indeed are minor points, but the positives easily outweigh them. The Pebble Plus is a set of PC speakers that punches far above its price tag.
Serious sound, affordable price
For an astonishing price, you get great volume, clarity, a subwoofer, and no need for external power. These speakers perform far above their price tag.
Richard Devine is a Managing Editor at Windows Central with over a decade of experience. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently, you'll find him steering the site's coverage of all manner of PC hardware and reviews. Find him on Mastodon at mstdn.social/@richdevine