AE-1 Classic LE / pr.

5.00 out of 5 based on 6 customer ratings
(6 customer reviews)

$ 1,999.00

Announcing the AE-1 Classic Limited Edition

In celebration of the final production run of one of the UK’s most iconic loudspeakers, there will be a limited edition final production run of the award winning AE1 Classic loudspeaker. Just 100 numbered pairs of the AE1 Classic Limited Edition speakers will be produced.

In addition to the luxurious Piano gloss, each unit will be finished with gold or silver plated bolts and feature a matching gold/silver plated Limited Edition plaque with serial and edition numbers on the back of each speaker.

Famed for its acoustic design by Phil Jones and based on the original AE1, the AE1 Classic LE will retain the same instantly recognizable twin front ported cabinet, spun aluminium cone and 25mm magnesium alloy dome tweeter and offer the same sweet, detailed and engaging sound. The decision to end the life of this highly renowned audio gem is derived from some of the bespoke parts no longer being made available to AE.

hfc_5star_logoNote: Price includes Free Shipping in the USA by Fedex International. Stands are optional, not included in price.AE108-Black-(remote)

Add An 8″ AE Powered Subwoofer for 38 Hz to 120 Hz Bass

Price includes free shipping.

Add A Pair of AE’s 25.5″ Stands For Optimal Performance

Included with the stand are our new isolating speaker support pads, offering a perfect performance coupling between speaker and top-plate. Spikes are included for floor coupling. Price includes free shipping.


It’s 26 years since the AE-1 first wowed reviewers and became the audio-industry benchmark for compact loudspeaker design. To celebrate the AE-1 AE-1 classicwas relaunched in 2006 in its completely original form. Designed from the outset as a semi-professional monitor, painstaking attention to detail in the design and construction of cabinets, crossovers and baffles ensure the new AE-1 Classic LE reproduces complex, dynamic material as faithful as the award winning original.

Classic Principles

Time may move on but the principles of accuracy, transparency, reliability, and listening ease that made the AE-1 such a success first time around don’t change. The AE-1 Classic LE embodies those principles once again. The AE-1 Classic LE is modeled on the original Phil Jones designed AE-1 from around 1990. Our aim was, within the limitations of component supply and manufacturing, to make the AE-1 Classic LE as close to identical as possible. Thanks to improved components and manufacturing consistency, the AE-1 Classic LE is better.

Seriously Small – Seriously Good

AE-1 cherry 3The original AE-1 introduced new techniques in almost every element of its design and construction, each one aimed at making a better nearfield monitor. It was, for example, the first professional monitor with a ceramic sandwich aluminium cone, the first to increase power handling by using the woofer cone as a heat-sink , the first to incorporate a metal dome tweeter, the first to feature a latex fibre/powder composite lined cabinet, and the first to demonstrate beyond doubt that a seriously small speaker could be a seriously capable monitor.

The AE-1 Classic LE technical highlights feature in the Classic just as they did in the original. The bass/midrange driver is UK manufactured in-house at Acoustic Energy using a spun aluminium cone only 0.2mm thick. The cone is hard anodised on both sides to create an immensely rigid sandwich component and then bonded to an aluminium voice-coil former. The intimate bond between metal former and cone means that the entire cone area is used for heat dissipation. As a result, and despite its small dimensions, the AE-1 driver offers generous power handling and suffers minimal compression.

Welcome though it is, power handling is not the primary reason for the choice of an aluminium cone. Aluminium’s combination of light weight and rigidity means that cone break-up is delayed till well above the crossover frequency. And thanks to the aluminium cone, bass/mid driver and magnesium dome tweeter, the AE-1 Classic is one of very few speakers of any type that can genuinely claim pistonic operation over the full audio bandwidth. The result is extraordinary tonal accuracy that reveals the shortcomings of most other  monitors.

Near ideal drive unit performance however would mean little if the AE-1 ‘s cabinet panels sang along in sympathy. That they don’t is thanks both to the inherent rigidity of the AE-1 Classic LE construction and to the unique latex composite lining of the internal walls.

The AE-1 was the first truly accurate, high power compact near-field monitor. We believe 20 years later the AE-1 Classic LE is the only speaker to reach its predecessor’s standards. 

The original AE-1 built up a loyal band of well known users – studios , musicians, engineers and broadcast organizations.  A few examples:

Abbey Road Studios , Air Studios, Alchemea , Alleycats, Bad Earth Studios, Beulah Studios , Billy Ocean, Boomerang Sounds, Brownhill Studios, Channel 4 Television , DEP International Ltd., Domaine Productions , EAR Productions, Fairground Attraction, Goldsmiths College, Haxton Studios, ICC Studios, James Taylor, Mick Hucknall, Kevin Maloney, Polygram I Island Music, Paragon, Parkgate Studio, Red Bus Studios, Radio Norwood – Holland, Redwood Studios,  Roger Waters  Music UK Ltd., Rollover Studios, Seal, Strongroom, USDF Productions, UB40, Virgin  Records Ltd., Whitfield  Street Studios.





Compact Monitor Comparison Chart              
Brands: Acoustic Energy AE-1 ProAC Response D1 KEF LS50 AerialAcoustics5B   B&W CM5  
Bass/Mid Unit 4.4″ dual aluminum 5″ Glass-Fiber   5.25″ Aluminum 7″ Paper   6.5″ Kevlar  
Tweeter 1″  Magnesium Alloy 3/4″ Silk   1″ Aluminum 1″ Titanium   1″ Aluminum  
Crossover 3rd Order @ 3KHz N/A   2.2 KHz 2.5 KHz   4 KHz  
Power Max 200 Watts 100Watts   100 Watts 200 Watts   120 Watts  
Freq Response ± 3dB 70 Hz – 22 KHz 38 Hz-30 KHz   ± 3dB 79 Hz-28 Khz ± 2dB 60 Hz-22K   ±3dB 50 Hz-28K  
Sensitivity 86 dB 87.5 dB   85 dB 86 dB   88 dB  
Impedance 8 ohms 8 ohms   8 ohms 4 ohms   8 ohms  
THD* < 0.3% N/A   < 0.4% N/A   < 0.5%  
Compression* < 1 dB N/A   N/A N/A   N/A  
Dimensions 11.6″ x 7″ x 10″ 12″x6.5″x10.25″   11.9″ x 7.9″ x 10.9″ 13″ x 7.9″ x 10.8″   13.4″x7.8”x11.9”  
Weight 16.5 lbs 20 lbs   15.8 lbs 22 lbs   19.6 lbs  
Price $1999 incl freight $3,500   $1,500.00 $2,500   $1,500  
Notation: All Specs Derived From Manufacturer’s Websites, N/A means no rating has been published. All models recommend stand-mounting    
*Thermal Dynamic Compression occurs when the voice coil heats up; AE is the only brand that uses its cone as a heat sink to suppress dynamic compression    
*THD stands for Total Harmonic Distortion


For the lowest compression, lowest distortion, and highest power handling, nothing beats the AE-1 Classic LE, the most compact, best in class and best value among the world’s top rated compact monitors.  This is the speaker that all the others derive from and still the best after 25 years.  Now is your last chance to own this Classic speaker, once they’re gone, there will be no more made.      

Additional information

Weight 36 lbs
Dimensions 14 x 16 x 13 in


Technical Specifications​

Piano Cherry or Piano Black

Bass/Mid Driver: 
110mm ceramic sandwich aluminium cone. 32mm edge-wound voice-coil

25mm magnesium alloy dome

Symmetrical third order at 3kHz

Power Handling:
Compatible with amplifiers rated at up to 200 Watts into 8 Ohms

Frequency Response:
70Hz – 22kHz ±3dB

86dB for 2.83V at 1m

Nominal Impedance:
8 Ohms

Total Harmonic Distortion: 
Typically less than 0.3%, 200Hz to 20kHz

Power Compression:

Less than 1dB for 16dB gain at 250Hz

Dimensions (H x W x D):
295 x 180 x 255mm

7.5kg (single, unpacked)

6 reviews for AE-1 Classic LE / pr.

  1. 5 out of 5

    “I have to say that the AE1 is one of the finest, most transparent cone speakers I have heard. Its ability to float a stable, deep, well-defined soundstage is awesome, which, coupled with its ability to play without strain, immerses the listener in the music. As far as I’m concerned, it redefines the art of miniature speaker design. If you have a small to medium size room, or value midrange transparency and the ability to make the ends of your listening room disappear, then the Acoustic Energy AE-1 should be on your short list of speakers to audition”. John Atkinson, Stereophile Sept 1995

  2. 5 out of 5

    “The high-quality small monitors from the town of Cirencester in Gloucestershire raise the bar for two-way designs a bit higher. Clean, precise, spatially and very musical, so can the qualities of this speaker summarized. The Acoustic Energy AE-1 Classic in its current version leaves no doubt that the British manufacturer is well advised to continue to keep this model in his portfolio. For small to medium-sized rooms, the small British speaker gets a strong recommendation from me.” Hi Fi Stars Germany, April 2014

  3. 5 out of 5

    “With the new edition of his AE-1 Classic Acoustic Energy landed a direct hit. Thanks to the successful combination of optics and engineering these speakers are a hot tip not only on the mixing desk. Anyone looking for a compact, honest speaker with dynamic reserves and great joy of playing, should listen to the small British compact once. Combined with matching electronics – the amp should like to be a little stronger – and half a meter in front of the wall positioned on a stand makes the AE-1 beat some hifi hearts higher.” Stereo Test Germany, March 2014

  4. 5 out of 5

    “Rightly considered a classic design, the AE-1’s performance is astonishing and hold up well against today’s competition.” What Hi Fi, Oct 2006

  5. 5 out of 5

    “No matter what sort of music you feed it, the AE-1 makes magic, no surprise that it was designed by Phil Jones, a bass guitar mad musician. You will be amazed at how loud these little boxes can play without breakup.” David Price, Hi Fi Choice, Dec 2013

  6. 5 out of 5

    “Brilliant, successful remake of an iconic design; surely one of the most musical speakers ever made.” Hi Fi World
    April 2006

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