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Klipsch Reference R-51PM Powered bookshelf speakers with Bluetooth® and built-in phono preamp

Item # 714R51PM

I love that you can connect just about anything to Klipsch R-51PM speakers  and save space, because...

I love that you can connect just about anything to Klipsch R-51PM speakers  and save space, because...

Item # 714R51PM

Shop all Klipsch Powered Stereo Speakers

About the Klipsch Reference R-51PM

Eric A.

No receiver required with these versatile speakers

I love that you can connect just about anything to Klipsch R-51PM speakers and save space, because you don't need a receiver. But I'd be remiss if I didn't point out that these speakers offer impressive sound, too. 

No receiver required with these versatile speakers

I love that you can connect just about anything to Klipsch R-51PM speakers and save space, because you don't need a receiver. But I'd be remiss if I didn't point out that these speakers offer impressive sound, too. 

Each features a 1" aluminum diaphragm compression tweeter matched with a 90° x 90° Tractrix® horn and a 5-1/4" woofer with the classic Klipsch spun-copper look. Rear bass ports make sure you hear the low notes while you're rocking out to your favourite tunes.

Now, about those connections

The right-hand speaker houses an amplifier that cranks out 60 watts of custom-tuned power per channel, and it's also where you'll find the plethora of inputs you'll use to connect other gear. The optical input is great for bolstering TV sound. There's an analog stereo RCA input with a line/phono switch so you can connect your turntable. Use the USB port to play tunes stored on your computer, or the 3.5mm aux input for your mobile device. 

And of course, you can choose the ultra-convenient wireless streaming option, because there's Bluetooth built in.

There's also one very important output on the back of the speaker — a mono RCA for hooking up a powered subwoofer — like the Klipsch Reference R-8SW — to add deeper bass to music and movies.

My hands-on experience with the R-51PMs

Rear panel of Klipsch R-51PM speaker (right)

Klipsch R-51PM powered speakers offer a plethora of inputs so you can connect sources without going through a receiver.

I'm a fan of Klipsch's powered speakers. I loved the Reference R-15PMs when I tested them out in my two-bedroom apartment a while back, so I was pleased to find, when I unboxed the R-51PMs, that they're significantly more compact, yet offer more built-in power.

Putting them to the test

It took me less than 15 minutes to set the speakers up in my master bedroom and start streaming music from my Spotify® account. They took up very little space on my combination dresser/entertainment furniture, but they produced clear sound that filled the room quite nicely.

I fiddled with their placement, moving them away from the wall until I was getting good, solid bass from the rear-firing ports. Then I went to town on an eclectic playlist — jumping from Debussy to Coltrane to Rage Against the Machine and beyond — to get a sense of how they'd perform.

The verdict? They sound as good as they look. I love that classic Klipsch spun-copper woofer and horn tweeter for both reasons. They come with magnetic grilles, but I opted to leave them off.

Using multiple sources

I like streaming tunes while I'm reading or doing light housework, but that's not all the RP-51PMs can do — not by a long shot. I hooked up the second TV to the optical input on the back of the right-hand speaker, and dialogue and sound effects became immediately more present and enjoyable.

I keep my turntable hooked up to the component system in my living room, but I like knowing that I can move it to my room and plug it straight into these powered speakers if I want to. With a teenaged son in the house who's not always super-careful with dad's audio equipment, that's a tempting notion.

I have a smaller set of near-field monitors that I love, but I think I'll move those to the desktop next to my computer. These Klipsch speakers offer the extra oomph — and that all-important phono stage — that I really crave when I'm hanging out in my personal space.


Product highlights:

  • Bluetooth technology for streaming from compatible devices
  • built-in switchable phono preamp
  • each speaker features:
    • 1" aluminum diaphragm compression tweeter matched with a 90° x 90° Tractrix® horn
    • 5-1/4" spun-copper woofer
    • rear-firing bass-reflex port
  • Dynamic Bass EQ gives you fuller bass at low volume
  • 60 watts per channel via built-in amplifier (right speaker)
  • frequency response: 68-21,000 Hz (±3dB)
  • compact remote control included
Connections (back of right speaker):
  • optical digital audio input (2-channel PCM only)
  • RCA stereo analog audio input
    • switch for selecting phono or line input
  • USB Type B input for connecting your Mac® or PC
  • stereo minijack input for mobile devices
  • RCA mono output for optional powered subwoofer
Dimensions and Warranty:
  • speaker dimensions: 7-1/16"W x 13"H x 10-1/4"D (each)
  • weight: 12.7 each
  • warranty: 1 year
  • MFR # 1066254

What's in the box:

  • Powered speaker (right)
  • Passive speaker (left)
  • 2 Grilles
  • 68" AC power cord
  • Remote control
  • 2 "AAA" batteries
  • 16' Length of 18AWG speaker wire (bare tinned wire on each end)
  • 6.5' USB-A to USB-B cable
  • 58" Optical digital cable
  • 8 Self-adhesive rubber feet
  • Instruction Booklet

Customer reviews for Klipsch Reference R-51PM

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5.0 out of 5 stars
127 reviews

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More details on the Klipsch Reference R-51PM

Stacey B.

Features & specs

Ethernet Port No
USB-A Port 0
USB-B Port 1
USB-C Port 0
3.5mm Aux Input 1
RCA Input 1
XLR Input 0
Phono Input Yes
1/4" Input 0
Digital Input Optical
HDMI Input No
Headphone Jack No
Subwoofer Output mono-RCA
Wireless Features
Bluetooth Built-in
Wi-Fi No
Wi-Fi Bands No
Driver Details
Tweeter Size (Inches) 1.0
Tweeter Type Tractrix Horn
Tweeter Material Aluminum LTS
Midrange Size (Inches) ---
Midrange Type ---
Woofer Size (Inches) 5.25
Woofer Type Copper-spun IMG
Audio Specs
Watts RMS (Continuous) 120
Watts Maximum (Peak) 240
Frequency Response 68-21k
Max. Digital Audio Bit Depth 24-bit
Max. Digital Audio Sample Rate 96 kHz
High-res Audio Playback
From Network No
From USB Thumb Drive (USB-A) No
From Computer (USB-B) Yes
From Computer (USB-C) No
Handheld Remote Yes
Control by app N/A
Amazon Alexa No
Google Assistant No
Other Specs
Width (Inches) 7.0625
Height (Inches) 13
Depth (Inches) 10.25
Parts Warranty 1 Year
Labor Warranty 1 Year

Product Research


Two-Way Driver Design: The Klipsch R-51PM powered bookshelf speakers deliver room-filling sound from a two-way driver design. Each speaker includes a 1" aluminum diaphragm compression driver with a Linear Travel Suspensions (LTS) mated to 90° x 90° square Tractrix Horn, and 5.25" copper spun magnetically shielded IMG woofer. The tweeter and woofer are crossed over at 1663Hz.

  • LTS Aluminum Tweeter: Klipsch exclusive Linear Travel Suspension (LTS) aluminum tweeter minimizes distortion for enhanced, detailed performances. Using Kapton, an extremely light and rigid material, in the tweeter suspension provides high efficiency and improve resolution and detail. 
  • Tractrix Horn: The square Tractrix horn delivers a 90° x 90° dispersion pattern for a broader sound-stage.
  • Copper Spun IMG Woofer: Each loudspeaker uses a copper spun IMG (Injection Molded Graphite) 5.25" woofer for accurate midrange and midbass performance.

Bass Reflex MDF Cabinet: The Klipsch R-51PM employs a bass reflex enclosure with a rear-firing port for greater efficiency and bigger bass response. The ported enclosure features a MDF cabinet finished with a a scratch-resistant, textured wood grain vinyl. The rigid MDF cabinet utilizes internal cross-bracing to minimize panel vibrations that can color sound. Each speaker also comes with a low profile magnetic grille.

Built-in Amplification: The Klipsch R-51PM's "Right Speaker" employs a built-in, ultra-low noise 60 watt x 2 channel amplifier to power both speakers in the system. The built-in amplifier has been custom deigned to maximize driver performance and eliminate the need for external amplification. The "Right Speaker" and "Left Speaker" are fitted with binding-post speaker terminals on the back of the cabinet and come with 16' of speaker wire (18AGW) to connect the speakers together.

Dynamic Bass EQ: As the human ear perceives frequencies differently with variations in output, the R-51PM will dynamically match the ear's ability to hear lower frequencies. Typically, only available with audio/video receivers, dynamic volume is a first for Klipsch powered monitors. What you get is powerful bass whether the listening volume is low, cranked up or somewhere in between.

Bluetooth Music Streaming: The Klipsch R-51PM active loudspeakers feature built-in Bluetooth A2DP/AVRCP technology which allows you to wirelessly stream audio from your Bluetooth-enabled source device - such as your smartphone, tablet, laptop, or computer. You'll be able to stream stored music or music apps from your Bluetooth-enabled device and control basic playback from the included remote control. Advanced playback control and song/artist information will still be done from your Bluetooth device. Once paired, the R-51PM will automatically re-connect with your device when in wireless range (up to 33').

Note: Due to the differences in Bluetooth technology, some Bluetooth enabled devices may be incompatible, function improperly, or may not support all features when used with the Klipsch R-51PM.

USB-B Input: The "Right Speaker" of the Klipsch R-51PM features a rear-panel USB (type-B) input for connecting your Windows PC or Mac computer/laptop. Through the R-51PM's USB connection, you are able to play music files (up to 24-bit/96kHz) stored on your Windows PC or Mac computer/laptop through the powered speaker system.

Optical Digital Input: The Klipsch R-51PM is fitted with an optical (toslink) digital input on the back of the "Right Speaker" for connection to a digital audio device like your TV, Blu-ray, or CD player. The speaker's optical digital input will accept 2ch stereo PCM only (up to 24-bit/96kHz).

Dual Analog Inputs w/ Phono Switch: The Klipsch R-51PM is equipped with two analog audio inputs on back of the "Right Speaker"; there is one stereo minijack (3.5mm) input for connecting a portable audio device with a headphone jack and one stereo RCA input for connecting an analog audio component. The stereo RCA input has a Phono switch which allows you to connect a turntable, so you can enjoy your vinyl record collection.

Sub Out: The Klipsch R-51PM features a mono-sub RCA output on the back of the "Right Speaker" that allows you to connect a powered subwoofer for added bass response. Your powered sub should have its own low-pass crossover.

IR Remote: The Klipsch R-51PM includes an IR wireless remote control for wireless operation of the powered speaker, plus control of your Bluetooth paired devices. The remote offers easy access to system features such as dedicated source selection, volume up/down, play/pause, and previous/next track. Make sure to point the IR remote at the IR sensor on the "Right Speaker".

Mounting Options: The Klipsch R-51PM can be placed on a speaker stand, bookshelf, table, or other flat surface. The powered bookshelf loudspeakers come with self-adhesive rubber feet to secure the speaker in place and prevent any damage to your stand's or shelf's surface. The rubber feet add approximately 0.125" to the overall height of the speaker.

Note: There is no included bracket, keyhole slot, or threaded insert to wall-mount the speaker.

AC Power: The Klipsch R-51PM's "Right Speaker" which is equipped with the built-in amplifier must be plugged into an AC power outlet using the included 68" detachable AC power cord.

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Customer Q&A

25 questions already asked

I've seen conflicting answers to the question of whether I can connect a CD player to this and listen without a receiver/amplifier. Is that possible or not? Also does the passive speaker connect wirelessly to the powered speaker or do I need to connect with wires? Lastly, the powered speaker needs to be connected to AC source?
ferdinand  Apr 27, 2022
1 answer
Yes, the powered speaker needs to be connected to an AC source. The passive speaker connects to the powered speaker through an included wire. You can connect a CD player through Bluetooth or use the line in connection to plugin the CD player.
todd  Apr 27, 2022
Can I connect them to Bluesound Powernode?
osvaldo  Dec 05, 2021
1 answer
As the Powernode has an amplifier similar to the Sonos:AMP, I don't think these self-powered R-51PMs would like having 80W RMs shoved at them on the line-in. If you already have the Powernode, I'd suggest the un-powered Klipsch R-51M, which is the same speaker but without the built-in amp/Bluetooth/etc.
james  Dec 10, 2021
My technical advisor Dutch said I could hook up a CD player to these speakers. Can I?
kevin  Nov 27, 2021
1 answer
Yes. "Equipped with an integrated phono pre-amp, Bluetooth® wireless technology, digital optical, analog RCA and USB inputs"
ben  Nov 27, 2021
If I were to get two pairs of these could I play a song on both pairs simultaneously through bluetooth? What if I connected a phonograph to one pair, could I hear the record through all 4 speakers?
jebb  Oct 29, 2021
1 answer
As far as I can tell there is no way to pair all of these speakers together to act as one unit like Sonos speakers. You could setup both pairs on your device (laptop, mobile phone) but I am sure your device will only allow you to use one set of the Bluetooth speakers to play your sound through.
todd  Oct 31, 2021
hi, would these speakers be good for my LG Oled TV? Or is there something else you can recommend. thanks
jim  Sep 28, 2021
1 answer
I love these speakers for music but have an LG soundbar with separate bass for my LG TV. These won't give you surround sound.
matt  Sep 28, 2021
Can I connect these speakers directly to a turntable?
kristen  May 28, 2021
3 answers
They have a phono preamp, so wouldn't that mean yes you can connect a turntable direct?
robert  Jul 27, 2021
I haven't yet, but the manual says you can and there's a connection point on them for phono. So yes you can! PS, these speakers are pretty good! I'd buy them again!
richard  May 30, 2021
No, you can't, these speakers have no amplifier.
otilio  May 28, 2021
Anyone using speaker stands for these speakers? Which ones? I have looked at some of the stands by Sanus (SF30).
keith  Nov 30, 2020
1 answer
Those stands have the same sized top plate as some of the stands we list in the Accessories section for these speakers. They also support the weight of the speaker. They will work!
jason  Dec 14, 2020 (Staff)
Can a center channel speaker be hooked up to these?
whhunter3  Oct 17, 2020
5 answers
The Klipsch Reference R-51PMs are designed to be a complete stereo package on their own with the option of adding a subwoofer. These aren't designed to work with more than 2 channels. If you'd like a system that incorporates a center channel give us a call at 1-800-324-9695 and we will be glad to help you out!
allison  Nov 11, 2020 (Staff)
lance  Nov 09, 2020
I don't believe so..
gerard  Nov 09, 2020
In a Simple way No. This model does not provide Output for a stand alone center channel. You can only add a subwoofer. There's another Klipsch model that is completely wireless that let's you build it for each Channel (look for Klipsch Reference Wireless 3.0 Sound System). Still yet they sound awesome without center channel.
jorge  Nov 09, 2020
I don't know the answer to your question. Didn't care for the Klipsch sound so I returned the speakers.
joseph  Nov 09, 2020
I'm currently running Bose 10.2's off a Sony DH550 for music only. I'd like to "down size", would the R-51PM would be an equal sound replacement?
william  Oct 13, 2020
1 answer
The RP-51PM are great for music I have them hooked to my turntable and they sound great. No need for amplification since they are powered. Compared to your Bose the bass may be less since you have 10" woofers but the RP's are designed to be very musical reproducing detail with finesse.
lawrence  Oct 13, 2020
Can the Klipsch R 51PM be connected to Bose Soundtouch 30 series 111 to play together at the same time like another speaker ?
dale  Sep 09, 2020
1 answer
We have not received any answers from other customers on your question. I would recommend reaching out to an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They should be able to help answer your question.
thomas  Sep 24, 2020 (Staff)
This speakers with klipsch Subwoofer R-10SW without a receiver ¿It's a good idea?
andres  Aug 15, 2020
3 answers
joseph  Aug 15, 2020
There's no need to add a receiver, as the speakers and subwoofer are powered on their own. Bluetooth, 3.5 mm jack, turntable, and computer ready out of the box.
brian  Aug 15, 2020
Great, deep, clear sound. Without out a receiver? Don/t know what you mean by that
john  Aug 15, 2020
Does this speaker have Bluetooth 4.0 or 5.0?
jose  Jul 30, 2020
1 answer
5.0 All devices made on or after 2017 are Bluetooth 5.0
lawrence  Jul 30, 2020
How do you choose the source if connected to multiple inputs?
markh  Jul 12, 2020
5 answers
It's all done through the remote. IE: You can be connected through the aux 3.5mm jack, and select Bluetooth with the remote and connect another Bluetooth enabled device. The remote dictates the input.
brian  Jul 12, 2020
With the remote that comes with the speakers
darren  Jul 12, 2020
Included remote or the dial on the back of speaker. These speakers have been great, had to add a sub when my son took these for his music production setup.
joseph  Jul 12, 2020
The provided remote allows you to switch between optical, Bluetooth, aux, phono. A colored led on the active speaker (right), tells you what mode you're in.
richard  Jul 12, 2020
You select the source via the remote control. Bluetooth, phono, Optical, etc...
gerard  Jul 12, 2020
How do you recommend connecting a CD player to R-51PM speakers?
thomas  Jul 02, 2020
2 answers
You'll need to connect the CD player to an Amplifier and then the speakers are connected to the output of the amp. Unless the CD player has it's own amp.
john r  Jul 02, 2020
Sounds great.
otilio  Jul 02, 2020
Can I connect the wireless transmitter for the Klipsch Reference R-10SWi subwoofer to the powered speaker? I plan to use the speakers with only a turntable and no receiver.
carol  Jun 19, 2020
2 answers
I'm sure you can connect the transmitter to the subwoofer output and it should work.
lawrence  Jun 20, 2020
There is a sub out, so assuming the wireless transmitter can connect to a stand sub out, then you're good to go. For context, I use these speakers directly with a turntable and no receiver, but I don't have a sub as part of the setup.
adam  Jun 19, 2020
Can I Hook Up A Newmark Mixer To These Speakers ?
anthony c  Jun 03, 2020
1 answer
Crutchfield asked me to come in since I purchased the speakers from them. I do not know what a new Mark mixer is but I have the speakers connected to a Yamaha amplifier and they were great and I love them. If the outputs of your mixer are similar to a standard amplifier you will have no trouble.Enter an answer to this question.
matt  Jun 09, 2020
When I turn the speakers on they make a passive static noise and this can sometimes be heard while it's playing music, how can I solve this?
matthew  May 13, 2020
2 answers
run higher grade grounded - shielded cables. Ground everything at only one pint, at the outlet ground. Avoid ground loops!
john  Aug 15, 2020
Hello, Fortunately for me I don't have any noise. I just turned mine on and upped the volume to double check. Have you double checked your wiring? Also, could anything in the area (appliance, lighting) be producing the interference you are picking up? Sorry I can't be of more help. Good luck.
james c.  May 13, 2020
I have a classic stereo receiver system (Sony 7065). Can I use an Outlaw Wireless System (WiFi transmitter and receivers) to send the audio signal to these speakers?
charlie  Sep 03, 2019
3 answers
Theoretically, it should work just fine. :)
thomas  Sep 13, 2019 (Staff)
Charlie, I wish I had the answer for you. It's above my pay grade(-:. I would probably contact Klipsch directly for that one.
george s  Sep 12, 2019
It would have to be a Bluetooth transmitter in order for them to work.
lawrence  Sep 12, 2019
Do the speakers need to be connected to each other?
stephen  Sep 01, 2019
3 answers
Yes they have to be connected, the right speaker contains the amplifier and the supplied speaker cable is very long. It can be replaced quite easily if you are using these as near field monitors. I am very impressed with their performance. Please allow some break in time they sound better after 20 to 30 hours of listening to them and if you are already into the Klipsch sound you should be more than content.
steven e.  Sep 04, 2019
Yes. But you can confirm with their customer service. They are outstanding.
louis  Sep 02, 2019
Yes and comes with the wiring to do so
mitch  Sep 02, 2019
Are there any stands that will fit these speakers?
bill  Aug 23, 2019
2 answers
Yes, Sanus NF24 Speaker Stands, but I have a good sized desk and they fit perfectly on it.
john r  Aug 23, 2019
If you mean specifically made for these speakers, I don't think so. But, you can find many stands of varied sizes and designs on Crutchfield's site. Just look up the L x W size and weight, then pick as appropriate stand. Hope this helps.. Really like them btw.
james c.  Aug 23, 2019
How do I connect a receiver to Klipsch?
heidi  Apr 07, 2019
2 answers
You. can use any of the Audio inputs that are on the back of your right speaker to connect them to a receiver. Line out from your reciever to the speaker.
lawrence  Apr 08, 2019
You may already have the question answered, but just in case: you should be able to connect your receiver to the speakers via optical input (requires optical cable). This is the primary way I would connect. You can also rca cable to connect to left and right channels.
ronald  Apr 07, 2019

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