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I Need a Kick As$ Audio Setup - Gimme Some Ideas

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July 28, 2006 3:01:19 PM

well i've looked at 5.1 vs. 7.1 and it seems that 7.1 would be a little too much i mean hell, that's 8 speakers! I don't have that much room on my desk!

so, i'm gonna go with the 5.1 cause i've got an idea of how i'm gonna lay out the 6 speakers

i'm not so much worried about price as i am getting a good quality sound. the most expensive 5.1 speaker system i've seen on newegg is $335.00, i doubt i have to spend that much to get good sound. the Logitech THX z-5300e is only $115 and i bet they sound just as good. but, any opinions on other speaker set-ups would be appeciated (the z-5500 looks awesome)

next is the sound card, everyone is talking about this SoundBlaster X-Fi but its for 7.1 systems. the only other good looking 5.1 card i've seen is some M-Audio but i'm not sure about it. anyone know of an awesome 5.1 card?

your help is appeciated, thx :lol: 
July 28, 2006 7:43:20 PM

The best sound card for you can vary depending on what you plan to use it for. If you plan to do any gaming a Creative X-Fi is going to be quite nice and will give you back a few fps. It is capable of 7.1 sound, but can do 6.1, 5.1, 4.1, and 2.1 and 2.0 as well. M-Audio Revolutions are nice but don't offer the dedicated APU's that Creative cards have and don't support the latest revisions of EAX. In fact, if gaming isn't important to you there a lot of good sounding cards available...from the very economical to the audiophile-class. You'll undoubtedly see this as you search the forum.

Stick with Creative if gaming is important to you, though. I believe you'll be happiest there in the long run. In Creative's line-up if the X-Fi's cost more than you want to spend $112+ you'd still do quite well with an Audigy 2ZS or an Audigy 4.
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July 29, 2006 12:45:15 PM

Quote:
ok, i've got it down to either:

Logitech Z-5500
or
Klipsch Ultra 5.1


No decision to be made here. The Z-5500 without a doubt.

I would suggest getting a surge protection plug as well though if you get the Z-5500. The power adapter on the sub is weak, and during electrical storms, the 2amp timed fuse at the back of the sub can blow.

Quote:

now for the sound cards there are 4 different X-Fi one's:

X-Fi Elite
X-Fi Falta1ty
X-Fi Platinum
X-Fi XtremeMusic

which would be best for gaming and the speakers i have chosen out

o, and keep in mind i have a P4C-800E-Deluxe mobo, i just want to make sure its all compatible, thx

i have links to them all so just click on them to take a look


Mobo compatibility problems wont arise as these are all PCI sound cards(you have spare PCI slots on that mobo right?). Personally i would just get a audigy2, but that's partly because X-FI cards don't have driver support on linux. Either way audigy2 zs or xtreme music will do just fine. X-RAM has yet to be taken advantage of by most games, so it's a waste of time paying extra for the Falta1ty.
July 29, 2006 1:00:34 PM

If price wasn't an issue, I would lean toward the Klipsch 5.1 Ultra. A dedicated tweeter always helps increase the off-angle accuracy of the speakers, which means you can sit in a wider area from the frontal radiating area of the speakers without having the sound degrade.

If you are lucky, you can pick up a set of Klipsch 5.1 Ultras from Best Buy at $200.

Also, getting an X-Fi more or less nullifies the need of the Logitech Z-5500s decoder, as both share similar features (Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS decoding, stereo surround, etc). The Klipsch setup has more of the cost going towards the speakers, and the Logitechs have some diverted towards the decoder. So if you do get an external analog sound card, you can be a little more efficient with where the money goes, rather than buying the same thing twice.
July 29, 2006 1:32:13 PM

I have the sound blaster X-Fi Xtreme music with logitech x-530 5.1 surround sound speakers ($70 at best buy). The setup is awesome since i have room for the surround sound. Its just right for my room setup as i can play music while doing chores or whatever. Did i mention the sound quality is absolutely amazing?
July 29, 2006 2:26:57 PM

If money is not an issue, and you want a real good sound landing in your ear. I would prefer to buy a not built-in speaker.

I will buy an amplifier like Pioneer, NAD, or anything else with their dedicated DTS, THX or Dolby decoder. And set of speakers. There are so many 5.1 speakers set, and good built. JBL, Bose, Pioneer, etc...

If you have creative X-fi, you can connect to your amplifier through optical.
July 29, 2006 3:39:40 PM

Logitech z-5500 all the way it will distroy any sistem for that price range the
Klipsch 5.1 Ultras is a child when it comes to the Logitech,just make shure you pare this sistem up with a good sound card,the one mentioned by other are realy good,it dosen't matter what other people tell you,the Z-5500 is the man,go and buy it.

http://www.tweaknews.net/reviews/z5500/
July 29, 2006 4:07:50 PM

I have the z-5500's. they are fantastic, the sub is insane, and the surround sound is excellent, the z-5500's are the way forward!!
July 29, 2006 4:40:12 PM

Quote:
Logitech z-5500 all the way it will distroy any sistem for that price range the
Klipsch 5.1 Ultras is a child when it comes to the Logitech,just make shure you pare this sistem up with a good sound card,the one mentioned by other are realy good,it dosen't matter what other people tell you,the Z-5500 is the man,go and buy it.

http://www.tweaknews.net/reviews/z5500/


ok, cool, thx guys, the Z-5500 are being ordered :lol: 

and i've got this picked out for the sound card, X-Fi XtremeMusic it will be good with those speakers right?
July 29, 2006 5:12:28 PM

Quote:
ah you don't kow what your missing out on with 7.1


Thats ok, he'll still be missing out. Don't forget he also said

Quote:
hell, that's 8 speakers! I don't have that much room on my desk!


I can just imagine how "Kick As$" a 5.1 setup would sound with all the speakers aranged on a desk.... I should have done that when I setup my home theater, would have used way less speaker cable that way.
July 29, 2006 8:13:00 PM

Quote:
Logitech z-5500 all the way it will distroy any sistem for that price range the
Klipsch 5.1 Ultras is a child when it comes to the Logitech,just make shure you pare this sistem up with a good sound card,the one mentioned by other are realy good,it dosen't matter what other people tell you,the Z-5500 is the man,go and buy it.

http://www.tweaknews.net/reviews/z5500/


ok, cool, thx guys, the Z-5500 are being ordered :lol: 

and i've got this picked out for the sound card, X-Fi XtremeMusic it will be good with those speakers right?

For your intended use the X-Fi will leave very little to be desired. Enjoy.
July 29, 2006 10:11:51 PM

I second what Halcyon said. If it's for gaming, get Creative. If it's for music or Movies, then get an m-audio (I think there may be better M-audio cards than the revolution for non-gaming apps, but I'm sure someone else will pipe in either way).

If you are giong to game (and given that you're buying a pc speaker setup, I assume you are, get the X-Fi Fata1ty. I generally say buy the cheapest one you can get, but ZipZoomfly has it for $119. after rebate if you order before the end of the month.

It may not be any better than the basic model, but WTH. It's not that much more than the basic model.
July 29, 2006 10:51:01 PM

Quote:
Logitech z-5500 all the way it will distroy any sistem for that price range the
Klipsch 5.1 Ultras is a child when it comes to the Logitech,just make shure you pare this sistem up with a good sound card,the one mentioned by other are realy good,it dosen't matter what other people tell you,the Z-5500 is the man,go and buy it.

http://www.tweaknews.net/reviews/z5500/


ok, cool, thx guys, the Z-5500 are being ordered :lol: 

and i've got this picked out for the sound card, X-Fi XtremeMusic it will be good with those speakers right?


I own logitech 5300 and i just wonder how big is the differences between 5300 , 5500,and klipsch 5.1 ultra?
Which sub is better? I am talking a low end bass like car sub....
After reading a review about 5500 and 5.1 ultra makes me consider for an upgrade :evil: 
July 30, 2006 1:42:09 AM

having seen the two, and choosing the z-5500's, i can say that the sub on the 5500's is definately larger!
July 30, 2006 2:20:24 AM

If you want a kick a$$ audio setup, the only way to go is to get a seperate amp or receiver, and hi-fi speakers. Everyone here who thinks that the z-5500's give impressive sound haven't heard a proper sound system. Of course, the route I'm talking about can easily cost you $1000's, but it is what you need to do for truly amazing audio.
July 30, 2006 4:11:26 AM

Quote:
If you want a kick a$$ audio setup, the only way to go is to get a seperate amp or receiver, and hi-fi speakers. Everyone here who thinks that the z-5500's give impressive sound haven't heard a proper sound system. Of course, the route I'm talking about can easily cost you $1000's, but it is what you need to do for truly amazing audio.


You could put together a system that's roughly 350% more source faithful (linear frequency response; +/- 1.75db vs +/- 6db) on the on-axis alone, a number that could probably baloon to 1000s of percentage points more accurate on the off-axis angles than the Z-5500s for as little as $550, and this is just off the top of my head. (5 x AV123 X-LS + receiver combo)

For as low as as $250 + amp you can put together a 5-speaker Infinity Primus 150 system together, and that's accurate down to +/-2.5db in the same range. With very little work, you could put together a system that's off the charts. It's all effort--do you wan't to go to the supermarket, spend $12-15 for your dinner and cook it (of which there will be left over ingredients for the next meal), or do you want to go to McDonalds and spend $10 on a calorie-fest?

It could easily cost you in the $1000s, if you don't pay attention to your budget. It can also easily cost you barely more than a PC multimedia system, and you can actually listen to it without your head in a vise.
July 30, 2006 6:37:51 AM

Quote:
It could easily cost you in the $1000s, if you don't pay attention to your budget. It can also easily cost you barely more than a PC multimedia system, and you can actually listen to it without your head in a vise.


Yes, I didn't mean to infer that you had to spend $1000s, and I agree that you could do a very nice sound system for the price range you are discussing. On the other hand, increasing the budget even more can lead to even better sound as long as you spend the money wisely. I would also definitely advise to get a subwoofer, which I don't think you included??
July 30, 2006 11:22:28 AM

Dayton 120 12" Subwoofer will put all those "In a box" designs to shame... For only $150. Its a good place to start if you want to peice a system to gether...


Either go with a dedicated bookshelf/reciever setup, or Klipsch Ultras. Logitech 1 way drivers make me want to throw up!

In my current situation, I would get a reciever, get two bookshelf speakers and a sub to start my system! The I would build on from there.

Quality make a huge difference. But if your not into quality and just want loud midrange and boomy mid-bass, then GO LOGITECH!!!
July 30, 2006 12:40:57 PM

Quote:
It could easily cost you in the $1000s, if you don't pay attention to your budget. It can also easily cost you barely more than a PC multimedia system, and you can actually listen to it without your head in a vise.


Yes, I didn't mean to infer that you had to spend $1000s, and I agree that you could do a very nice sound system for the price range you are discussing. On the other hand, increasing the budget even more can lead to even better sound as long as you spend the money wisely. I would also definitely advise to get a subwoofer, which I don't think you included??

With the Infinity set, a sub is probably needed. But the X-LS are flat to 40hz anechoically, -10db at 30hz, and in room (15x15) is flat to 20hz. While a sub would be nice, if you are coming from PC speakers, these bookshelves will go deeper than those PC subs (such as the Z-5500, which startsnosediving as early 32hz IN-ROOM; a comparative anechoic value will probably be in the 50hz range). Certainly you could add a sub, say the X-sub ($200) will bring that flat response down to 28hz anechoically, and god knows how low in a small room. So, even without the sub, it's not exacty like you are *missing* bass, comparatively.
July 30, 2006 1:52:31 PM

Yo Chewster,
I HAVE the Log Z-5500's and I absolutely LOVE these babies :D 
The sound that comes out of them are very impressive. First let me state that I am by NO MEANS A LOGITECH FAN-BOY ...
That said.. lemme tell you what these bad boys CAN DO :wink:

Total power from these animals will put out about 505 W of pure power. The sub comes packed with haevy duty assist straps cuz... well.... iT WEIGHS IN AT A HEFTY 45 POUNDS !!!! :lol:  The sub has an awsome punchy base when you want it. And each satellite has a healthy weight to it. By that I mean if you place it on your desk or shelf, it won't just fall off or be pushed over easily. I would say each weighs a couple of pounds.. not sure here. Anyway, what I do with my sats is I put velcro under them to keep them in place cuzz .....well... when I game or listen to movies ....(CHUCKLES mischeviously ) I like it LOUD !!!! The sound quality that these put out place them ....in my opinion... with Klipsche pro media.

These sukkas can PUMP up the volume so loud that the bass and clear sound will KILL BACTERIA on the walls of your room 8) Trust me bro....they are capable of WAKING THE DEAD .......... :) 

One thing I must also point out here is the fact that tese are NOT just pegged for desktop PC use. They have a desktop console that is equipped with a digital decoder capable of 5.1 OPTICAL digital, Coaxial digital, and 6 channel analog. You can run your DVD player DIRECTLY from this console if you want and use it for your home theatre receiver. IT SOUNDS THAT GOOD!!! Headphones and mic can also plug in to the console too. The console sports an LED display with large readable text, and it also comes with a wireless remote if your too lazy ( like me :p  ) too reach to the console to make an adjustment.

Speaker hook-ups....they are NOT the rca plugs that low end speakers have. These are solder-ended bare wires that insert to BOTH the speaker itself AND the rear of the sub. Speaker mounts can also rotate to allow mounting on a wall if you want.

Oh yeah, this system is "THX", "Dolby Digital Pro-Logic II", and "dts" certified, that guarantees a quality sound.
I have pwned Creatives, Altec Lansings.....and they do NOT compare to the Z-5500's man.
NUFF said??? Oh I would advise against the Z-5450's. I've read in PC Magazine that the rear sats (being wireless) give a constant and annoying hiss that is noticeable even during sound output. .......
That's it....anything else lemme know and I can send ya a pm

RIG specs
Antec P180 PerformanceSeries Mid-Tower Case
SeaSonic S12 600 watt power supply
Asus A8N32 SLI mobo AMD N-Force 4 SLIX16 (bios 1103 V02.58)
RealTek 97 onboard digital 5.1 Surround
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+ Toledo Core, 2 X 1mb L2 cache (AMD driver 1.3.1.0 w/MS hotfix)
2 gigs of Corsair TwinX3500LL Pro @ 437Mhz 2-3-2-6-1T
2- BFG Tech 7900 GT OC 256mb in SLI (nvidia driver 91.31)
Western Digital RAPTOR 74.3 gig 10-K rpm HDD for XP & Apps
Maxtor SATA II 250 G HDD for gaming, movies, MP3's
Maxtor SATA II 250 G HDD for document backup (unplugged)
Sony CD rom 52X
Plextor 708-A DVD/CD rom
Logitech Z-5500 digital 5.1 THX Surround 500watts
July 30, 2006 9:18:08 PM

Nice writeup. Now put them and an entry level HT system up against each other... For the money, those 5500's will give more than enough punch and loudness... But, in terms of pure sound quality... They fall way short of any thaught-out HT system!

The best thing the started of this thread could do is do some reading and discover what he/she really wants... That would be the best advice right there... For each his own :wink:


www.google.com for further info!
July 30, 2006 10:01:46 PM

There's someone on the Hardocp forums, he bought an onkyo S780 and he says it kicks ass with his x-fi card, he says he had difficulty with getting speakers to function correctly through analog so he'll have to buy a set of cables from creative ($15us) that will let the sound card connect to any sound system. I think thats a good alternative, if it was me Id get the newer updated S790 since you can get it on sale similary priced.
!