Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Roth Audio OLi RA Review

Sections

Verdict

rating-star rating-star rating-star rating-star rating-star

Pros

  • Powerful, detailed sound
  • Superb build quality and stylish looks
  • Terrific price

Cons

  • Cabinet volume limits scale

Key Specifications

  • Review Price: £546.00
  • Acoustically tuned by Richard Allen
  • 4in woven fibreglass hybrid drivers
  • 1in black diamond silk dome tweeters
  • 200W active subwoofer
  • Matt black finish and magnetic cloth grilles

OLi RA is the third generation of Roth’s successful OLi speakers range, the previous incarnation of which impressed us greatly in our 2012 review. The key feature of this new series is that all models have been acoustically tuned by master speaker designer Richard Allen (hence RA), who has previously voiced speakers for high-end ’boutique’ brands like Arcaydis and EB Acoustics.

But if you’re thinking all this audio expertise comes with a sky-high price tag, you’d be wrong. Roth sticks with the same value-for-money ethos it applied to previous OLi ranges, which means you can bag yourself a full 5.1 speaker system with a powered sub for a very reasonable £546.

Roth OLi RA
The front and rear speakers

The system on test here comprises two pairs of OLi RA1 bookshelf speakers (£99 a pair) for the fronts and rears – the smallest and cheapest in the range – alongside the C30 centre speaker and KH30 subwoofer, both successors of the C20 and KH20 included with the previous OLi system.

If you want to go bigger, then the OLi RA range also features a slightly larger RA2 bookshelf speaker (£149 per pair), plus the RA3 and RA4 floorstanding speakers, which sell for £299 and £399 respectively.

SEE ALSO: 7 Best Soundbars

Roth OLi RA
The centre speaker

Given the RA1’s £99 price tag you’d be forgiven for expecting a few cut corners, but incredibly there’s little evidence of that. The solid, heavy cabinets are styled in a smooth matt black finish with curved corners. These serious-looking speakers don’t stray far from the traditional bookshelf template, but their smart, contemporary design has real living room appeal.

Each RA1 stands 231mm high (59mm shorter than the RA2), which isn’t exactly compact but won’t gobble up an unreasonable amount of space either. You can place them on shelves and speaker stands or even hang them on the wall – Roth supplies 5mm adhesive pads that cushion the back and give the rear ports room to breathe.

Roth OLi RA
The sub woofer

Naturally this chic styling is consistent across the range – both the KH30 and C30 share the high-quality matt finish and curved corners of the RA1s. The C30 measures 370mm wide and 153mm deep, ideal for placing in a rack or TV stand shelf. All of the speakers are rear ported with metal binding posts on the back and come with magnetic cloth grilles.

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2004, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have 9 million users a month around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.