The Borresen X1 Speakers are INSANE! Review.

The Borresen X1 Speakers are INSANELY GOOD. My Review. 

By Steve Huff

My video review!

For the last several weeks I have been enjoying the brand new Borresen X1 Speakers which are $5500 two way bookshelf style speakers that look like they cost $10-$15k. No, really. From the way the speakers are designed and built, to the tech inside of them as well as the amazing solid stands they sit on. These $5500 (Plus $1300 for the stands) speakers are hands down, full bore, drop dead incredible for this kind of money.

I will explain why in this review but I will say right now that I do not feel you can get performance anywhere close to these for anywhere close to this price. These are speakers that perform to a true high end level yet cost about as much as a modern day 2024 mid tier speaker. Let me say now that $5500 is not a small amount of money, but it would take 2X the cost to best these high performance speakers.

Borresen is normally associated with very exotic prices when it comes to their speakers, most of which are industrial works of art. When looking at Borreson speakers of the past one would expect to pay $20-$100k for a set of small speakers. The speakers from Borresen are of extremely high quality, in all aspects from construction, parts quality, design and of course SOUND.

I love that they wanted to create something that still retains their sound and looks in a much more affordable package. They created a series of speakers that allow more people, like you and me, to gain access to this brand of audio. The “X” series is all about extreme value for your money. The X1 is the smallest of the group, being a two way bookshelf sized speaker and instead of being priced in the five figure range, the X1’s are priced at $5500 yet give a huge dose of the Borreson sound from the higher end lines.

What I am saying here is that these bad boys, to me, perform better than speakers that cost much more, at least for my tastes. 

Usually speakers in this price bracket perform like, well, most speakers in this price bracket. The Borresen X1’s break all of these rules because these look and sound way better than what they cost.

Let’s take a look at some of my quick preferences..

I prefer the Borresen X1’s to the Dynaudio Heritage Special ($7k speaker only), the Focal Diablo Utopia ($24k), the Daniel Hertz Amber AND Eva ($9k-$12k+) and many others I have heard in my room that cost much more. In fact I only like one speaker more, for my tastes (the Closer OGY/BOB) but my wife’s faves are now the X1. I’ll also state that technically and functionally the X1’s best the Closer Acoustics combo. For sound they are quite different yet the X1’s may be the preference for you over the OGY combo.

As for the X1’s, my wife likes them A LOT. I love them as well and found them to bring an unreal sound to my room, no matter than amp I used.

Now, let me be clear. I am not in any way stating that the Borresen X1’s are “BETTER” than these speakers I just mentioned, I am merely stating that I prefer the performance of them to these speakers, and by a large margin, for my preferences, room and ears. Your ears may differ!

Before I start to talk about the specs and what these are all about let me state right now that there is no speaker on the market built as well as these for this kind of money. The build is exquisite, of high quality and reminds me some of the build of those $24,000 Focal Diablos, which is stunning. They have the aesthetic and design of a $15-$20k speaker and the sound is like something I have not yet experienced (more on this later).

They are not hyper detailed or lean like the Diablos, they are not “voice projectors” like the Fleetwood Deville. They do not shout at me like some fancy horn speakers and they do not ever sound lean or without soul like some big money speakers sometimes do. There is noting flat or dry about them either. With all of that said the X1’s are some of the most exciting speakers I have ever had through my doors and perform like no other speaker I have had here.

Buzz words for the sound of the X1...powerful, effortless, punchy, big CLEAN bass, supremely airy and very holographic. Very sweet and never aggressive. Paired with the brands Axxess Forte 1, it’s hard to recommend anything else in this $12k price bracket (for an entire system of streamer, amp. dac and speakers).


These are not hard to drive at all my friends and I have driven them with amps that put out anywhere between 30 and 200 WPC. All amps drove them very well in my 13X18 room. Larger rooms will need more power but if you are in an extremely large room, maybe the X2 or X3 would be preferred.

The X1’s are not a speaker you will want to use a flea watt tube amp with, but again, tube amps with 30 WPC or more will do just fine. These X1 speakers are rated at 6 ohm and 86db efficiency. Borreson recommends at least 50 WPC but as stated, one of the sweetest sounds was when I paired THIS tube amp with the X1’s. This amp brings 30 WPC.

Overall the finest combo of all was the Forte 1 integrated with the X1. This system just has a synergy and brings forth all of the details, snap, punch, drive and effortless magic from the X1 speakers.

These have trickle down tech from the more pricey lines in the Borreson speaker range, including the Borresen ribbon tweeter and a very high performance bass and midrange driver.


True High End Product with a Mid Tier price. (Yes, $5500 is mid tier pricing for high end HiFi in 2024)

If you have been into music and HiFi systems for a while then you probably have heard of Audio Group of Denmark. I love this brand so much (after the killer Aavik U-150 I owned for a while) that I touted them as my #1 fave audio company of 2024 in a recent video.  I love that they think outside of the box and are using new tech to enhance modern day audio. It’s true that today’s audio can sound better than anything of the past as some (Like AGD) are making great strides by bringing products such as the X1 and Forte series of amps that do everything in one box. They are doing this while lowering prices and this brings this level of audio to so many more people.

Audio Group Denmark seem to always be pushing the envelope when it comes to the performance of their speakers and with the X1 the value is just insane bonkers good.

They have several brands that they produce under this one company and I have to say that these products sit among the finest you can attain when it comes to performance for your audio systems, but they will cost you. With brands like Borreson, Axxess and Aavik, AGD is doing some awesome things in the HiFi world. One thing that has remained constant with AGD is the extremely high quality of the products that come from them, no matter the line of products.

Borresen has the M1’s, a two way bookshelf speaker and stand that comes in at around $100,000. Aavik has a flagship integrated that comes in at around $80,000. This is some high end stuff that until now (with these new more affordable lines) has not been attainable to most mere mortals, myself included.

Over the last year or so though, AGD has been working up new products that are more affordable, much more so, yet they give a big huge heaping helping of their flavor of sound that comes from their big pricey products. Will these X1’s sound like the M1’s that are $95k more? No, but will they give you a nice taste of those gorgeous M1’s? Yes. I have heard the M1’s (though not in my home) and they were quite special indeed, as they very well should be for that cost.

Bookshelf Magic

I love bookshelf sized speakers. They are my thing and really always have been. I love small two way designs because they have the ability to disappear in your room with ease when set up just right. This means, you hear the music within the room but can not tell that the sound is coming from the speakers, at all. This feat is usually done the best with smaller two way style speakers but can be done with larger boxes as well. I am happy to say that the X1’s disappear with ease and they love to project a gorgeous soundstage full of details yet with a slight ethereal vibe.

AGD also came out with the Axxess line recently, with the Forte amps. The Forte 1 is very much like their much more pricey cousins in the Aavik line but scaled down a bit to make them much more affordable. The Forte 1 integrated has a built in house streamer, built in house custom 1 bit DAC and a 100 WPC amp, all enclosed in a modern industrial styled case. I reviewed the Forte 1 HERE. Again, a perfect mate to the X1’s.

Going back to the X1, this is really a statement piece from AGD to show us what they can do for a much more affordable price. What these speakers can do is quite incredible in regards to bass, transparency, 3D imaging, soundstage realism and with all of this a nice full bodied midrange. The treble, using the brands now famous ribbon tweeter, sits among the finest and smoothest treble I have heard. It is this tweeter that adds a very “spooky” nature to these speakers as these can image in a very holographic way. In fact, these surpass the $20k+ Fleetwood Deville’s and my $7500 OGY/BOB when it comes to this three dimensional imaging. Not even close really.

You would think that by my words here that I feel the X1’s are the perfect speaker! No, they are not. I can not say that any audio product is perfect as we all have varying tastes in what we like. With that said, for those who love the style and look I am strongly confident you will also love the sound. For me, they really are like a perfect bookshelf. They look and sound like big money but cost much less than those big money speakers. What is not to love about that?

So all in all, the Borresen X1 is a loss leader for AGD. They may be selling these for close to what it costs to make them. I have been told that the dealers can not discount these due to the lean profit margin and I believe them. I have seen products within audio that had insane markup and I once saw a set of bookshelf speakers around eight years ago, at a high end dealer. He admitted they sounded good but not great yet because they were made in limited numbers, the cost was over $100k and collectors were buying them up. His cost for these? $18k, and yes he showed me and proved it.

He sat on those speakers for a year but did eventually did sell them for $85k I believe. That’s a nice $67k profit. The X1’s? Way lower profit margin indeed. So the X1’s do not have a crazy markup and are priced perfectly. I expect these to sell like hotcakes, and I believe they already are.

The Design and Build

When these showed up the speakers arrived in one box and the stands in a second box. When I opened up the speaker box I was not in any way expecting what I saw. The build, design and looks of these speakers is top class. Again, they look like $20,000 speakers and I should know as I have had many speakers of this cost over the last decade. From my Sonus Faber Guarneri ($24k) to the Fleetwood Deville ($22k) to the Diablo ($24k) along with quite a few others.

The Borreson X1’s fit right in with these when it comes to their unique looks, build quality and parts quality. The stands, which the speakers bolt on to, look and feel more like the $3k Focal stands for their Diablos. This is true high end build and style for a quarter of that high end money.

Modern Style 

The style is sort of industrial and modern with black carbon fiber on the sides and a sleek magnetic grille that fits on so perfectly it looks as if it is part of the speaker itself. I examined each speaker and could find no flaws in looks or design. Truly a spectacular product if you enjoy this kind of style and vibe. They do not look retro, vintage or exotic but they kind of have their own style.

I have to say that I would have preferred the one mid/bass driver to have been black instead of the “checkered flag” style that is on them. I am not a fan of that look but I am willing to look past it due to the way these sound as well.

Overall these are very well made and sit among the finest built speakers I have tested.

What makes them SO GOOD? 

When I set them up in my 13X18 dedicated audio room I initially set them up with the AGD’s very own Axxess Forte 1 integrated as they seem to be made for each other (and really kind of are). There is a nice synergy here with the Forte 1 and the X1’s as the amp has a way of delivering transparent and fast sound that is also muscular, beefy and quite airy. It’s crazy how they accomplished this not so common feat. This entire package of streamer, dac, amp and speakers sound like a $25k setup yet cost $12k or so. Now that is value. 

Usually when you have transparency and clarity you lose some of the mid warmth and body but here you get that transparency and wide open soundstage with true holographic imaging, and some beefy mids. I have spoken of this type of imaging before but it is very prevalent with the X1’s as they have an effortless way of projecting the music into the room. With the Forte 1 streaming and powering the music to the X1’s I was hearing things I normally associate with $25k systems. No joke.

If you are to buy a set of X1’s I can say that the Forte 1 (and Forte 2 and 3) are a great match to them. I can also tell you that other amps will also do very well with these speakers, some almost as good as the Forte and you can even get better if you want to climb the high end ladder. For example, I bet that the much older Aavik U150 and U300 would be magical with these speakers. I find those integrated amps to have a beefier bigger sound than the Axxess Forté 1. Sadly, even used and many years old, an Aavik U-300 normally sells for over $13k. So it shows what a great buy the Forte series of Amps really is.

There is even more to love about the X1’s. 

I removed the Axxess Forte 1 and installed the Brunoco Terra tube amp (review is here). Whoa! I preferred the tubes even more than the Forte but sadly I lost the streamer and DAC function so had to add a streamer (HiFi Rtose RS130 $5200) and a DAC (Denafrips Ares 12th-1 $900) but when I did…I was flabbergasted at the bump up in bass punch and flow. The tubes brought that same three dimensional soundstage and this time with front to back layers. This showed me that while the X1’s sounded amazing with the matching Forte 1 (and the Forte is what I recommend here with the X1) the Terra tube integrated sounded even better to these ears. The Terra is a phenomenally well made tube integrated and among the finest I have tested but it’s not an all in one, so a bigger expense will be needed.

I then hooked up an amp I have been listening to for months now. I am talking about the Yamaha RN-2000 which is a gorgeous all in one amp that can be found for a great price. (Deals can be found on Amazon for $3100-$3400) Ever since I reviewed this amp it has been a permanent fixture in my system, even besting SOME others that cost 3X as much for sound, features and design.

With the X1’s (though still using the HiFi Rose RS130 streamer) the sound with the Yamaha was spectacular. It was refined, full, warmer than most but with a gorgeous smoothed out sparkle up top. Not as exciting of a listen as the Forte 1, but a bit smoother and darker.

So with the Yamaha the X1’s sounded fantastic yet again. I also tried with a Pass Labs XP-10 preamp and a Galion TSA 75 amp. Wonderful yet again if not a bit more detailed up top with less warmth in the mids (vs Yamaha). That Galion amp is quite the special beast for $1500 and I will be reviewing it soon as well. It is yet another insane value that brings jaw dropping performance for much lower cost than most.

So this is also what makes the X1’s so good. They sound amazing with any amp I have thrown at them. They seem to like Class A, Class AB and Class D though really, the finest option here is with the Axxess Forte 1 integrated. Your mileage may vary.

Even though I love the Yamaha with the X1’s I still 100% recommend the Axxess Forté 1 with them as they are soulmates. Meant to be together. This combo offers up more detail and air vs the Yamaha where the Yamaha adds a little more warmth and bass punch. Pick your poison. Wherever amp you may own now will probably sound fantastic with the X1’s as well as they seem like a pretty easy drive. For those in a larger room, Borreson makes the X2 and X3 which are larger and will fill larger rooms with ease.

What kind of music do these sound best with?

Whether listing to Jazz vocals, audiophile recordings, crappy 80’s recordings, bluegrass, classical, EDM, rock and roll or even METAL, these X1’s delivered goosebump inducing sounds. Vocals are liquid and full but not overdone or bloated. The highs are special as I feel this ribbon tweeter is the true star of the show. Then we have that bass and mid driver that delivers low bass, deep impact and very punchy fast mids. It’s almost as if the speaker is electrified sometimes. Effortless and big sounding, huge holographic stage and the sweetest top end you can get without spending $20k.

These are powerhouse performers and really are a special speaker at a wonderful price.


I’ve been so lucky to be able to hear so many amazing pieces of audio gear. I have had so many speakers in through here just over the last 3 years, it’s been a real eye opener. Brands and models I thought I would love, I didn’t. Some brands I never heard of wowed me like crazy and others did not. The speakers I chose to review over these last 3 years have been maybe 75% of what I have had through here. I only do reviews when I love a product and this is why I do not do reviews daily or even every two days like so many audio YT channels do.

I also like to take my time, and listen for at least 100 hours before doing a full review. When something is new and fresh it will almost always be exciting but after some weeks, things may change.


These Borresen X1’s hangs with some of my fave speakers ever but they cost 65% less than most of those in my all time fave lists. 

Fleetwood Deville SQ – $24k – The X1’s sound way different and look much different as well. Even so, the X1’s sound is much more beefy with much bigger bass than the Deville. They are also much more holographic and open up top with a better holographic stage vs the Deville. The Deville wins in being unique in build and design as well as that “live” sound from the horn tweeter. When I look at the price difference, I do not see $15k+ better in the Deville. I do not hear it either. I loved those Devilles and they stayed with my system for around 16 months. The X1’s just offer a better value but yes, the Deville’s look absolutely gorgeous and are conversation starters as well.

Dynaudio Heritage Special – $7k – The X1’s are more liquid, more organic yet also more holographic with imaging. In fact, as much as I adore the Dynaudios for their classic style and looks, the X1’s sound better to me though maybe not as all out focused and clean as the Dynaudio. There is massive depth with the X1’s, layering within the soundstage. The build is also more impressive on the Borreson though personally I enjoy the style of the Dynaudio more.

Focal Diablo Utopia – $24k – These are gorgeous speakers and during my time with the they sounded best with a pair of subs. These impressed me with the treble as well but lacked a bit on bass. They are muscular sounding but extremely clear and a bit analytical. With subs they are among the finest I have heard but the subs took the price up to $30k. So clean, clear and no detail is lost. The X1’s are fuller sounding in the mids, more liquid and organic sounding but can not get as clear and precise as the Diablos. If both were the same cost I would take the X1’s. To me, they just offer a more musical flow.

Sonus Faber Guarneri (I have owned them all) $12k-$24k – I’ve always been a sucker for Sonus Faber. I have owned many of their models but always really enjoyed the Guarneri. I have owned the original “Homage” as well as the three that followed. I really enjoyed the Evolution series as well as the Tradition. These speakers have always been about midrange to ne but the EVO’s and Tradition brought along some pretty impressive bass as well. Big, beefy, and awesome. I will admit here, I prefer the sound of the SF Guarneri Tradition to the X1 but again, they are double the cost. Looks and build wise, the X1 stands toe to toe with the Sonus Faber. The SF is warmer, richer and has more dynamics but the X1 has its own kind of vibe that sounds just as nice, just different. At the price, the X1 is clearly the better speaker as it’s offering great value where the SF does not.

Closer Acoustics OGY and BOB System – $7500 – These are speakers I am bonded to and could never sell. That happens, even with me, but it is rare. Usually I review a piece, buy it, keep it around for a bit and then move on to the next. I buy A LOT of the gear I review, I’d say $75% of it as of April 2024. These will not be sold as each time I listen to them I love them more. These are very picky though, about the amp you use with them. Much more so than any other speaker I have owned but when you find the right match, look out. These excel in a big wide open window to the music. Crispy and detailed highs, very clear and full mids with some of the nicest most organic bass I have heard. These give you everything in the music with a lovely wide open flow. The X1’s in comparison are more muscular sounding, larger sounding, more punchy and even more holographic. Even so, I love the OGY and BOB setup as it’s unique and sounds so lovely. The OGY and BOB are a more intimate experience. Also conversation starters. The X1’s just seem so effortless in what they do and I believe some would take the X1’s vs the OGY/BOB as the Borreson is just such a great value.

Daniel Hertz Amber – $12k – OK, here we go. I sold my Ambers recently as I enjoyed the OGY/BOB more and can’t afford to keep everything. I am not a wealthy guy so can’t keep gear around I will not use any longer. These to me sounded their best with the Daniel Hertz Maria amp, only when said Maira is tuned to the Ambers (the Flat tuned Maria sounds…well…flat). With that setup it was so enjoyable and analog like.

Problem is that most other amps I have tried made the Ambers sound lean, a touch hard and just not so great. The tuning of the Hertz amp was set up for pretty big bass so without that tuned Maria, these can sound great but will not have the Magic of the Maria. These were only out for a few months when Mark Levinson replaced them with a newer, more pricey model with a new driver that they told me is made by Fender (Amber Midnight). That turned me off a bit as they also raised their prices dramatically right after my review for them took off (The Eva System went from $12k to $19k just a couple of weeks after my review, and at that price I would not recommend as you can get better for that kind of money). The Forte 1 and X1’s would set one back around $12-13k or so and I feel this is an even better combo for the money vs Maria and Eva which will cost you several thousands more.


So there ya have it. The Borresen X1’s are truly fantastic speakers that are an incredible value at their $5500 price, even when you factor in the extra cost of the stands. With stands (which are mandatory IMO) you will be paying under $7k but this package really looks and sounds like something that cost $20k. Really, no hype here. From the modern industrial design to the gorgeous ribbon tweeter in use here the X1’s are really something to behold.

These have become one of my fave sets of speakers and they have become my wife’s all time fave that I have had trough here. She loves the sound more than the looks but isn’t that what it is all about? THE SOUND?

If I could afford to buy these I would, but having just had to pay the tax man I may not see many new acquisitions this year but if I could, these would be a long term keeper.

I can easily and highly recommend the Axxess Forté 1, 2 or 3 with the X1’s as they are meant to be mates. The synergy is there already, all built in. The other amps I have tested with then also had them sounding magical. The Brunoco Terra tube amp and the Yamaha R-N2000 were superb with the X1’s as well.

This review though is not about amps or other speakers, it is all about these fantastic new speakers from Borresen that push the value to extremes. If you have always wanted a true high end speaker but never had the nerve to spend $20k on a set, well now if your chance to own a true set of high end speakers.

I love what Borresen did here by offering up a much more affordable option yet still has trickle down tech from the big pricey drool worthy models. This make the X1 drool worthy to almost any passionate music lover as who doesn’t want to save thousands and still get incredible high end sound?

If I added ratings to my reviews these would get a five star award. Sure, you can find speakers that are even technically better than these, of course. There is always something shiny and new that comes along to entice us but I am here to tell you that there is no way you can get better than the X1 for this kind of money. If these are in your price range you must take a look at them if you can.


The USA dealer for these is where my set shipped from, NEXT LEVEL HIFI in Wayne Illinois. See their website here and their online shop HERE. You can call them at 630-797-5117. Tell them you saw this review! I will say that they told me that the Axxess line and the new Borreson X line are not discounted as the margins are so slim with these pieces (I believe it) so do know that the X1’s are worth every penny of their retail asking price. Gets you into the Borreson brand for much less money, and that is spectacular. Give them a shout for availability. 




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