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Logitech 5500 vs Klipsch 2.1 for music?

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June 15, 2007 6:13:28 AM

I currently have Klipsch 2.1 speakers on my set up and really like them for music (rock, new age, classical). Dell has a great deal on the Logitech 5500 speakers for slightly over $200. Is it worth it to buy them. I am NOT interested in "kiss ass bass dude that rocks my dorm room" which is what 99% of those who post about the speakers write. I feel like the customer base is male 15-23.

I don't want to sound like a snob but I don't judge the quality of music by how the bass shakes my room. I want a balanced sound that attempts to recreate a soundstage for a variety of music. Does the addition of 3 more speakers really enhance the experience or is it really more for games and movies? And do these speakers match the quality of the Klipschs for sound accuracy? I do play games and watch movies but, again, I could care less about being knocked out of my seat. My sound card is a Sondigo Inferno. Thanks for any opinions.
June 15, 2007 6:20:51 AM

You need better speakers for music, not more speakers.

That means better drivers, better enclosures, better crossovers. The Logitechs aren't even technically as good as your Klipsch's. Since music is 2-channel for the most part, it's not a gain. Now playing 2-channel music in stereox2 or stereox3 can be fun and room filling, but better speakers will do that with superior dispersion.

Better speakers vs more little speakers, the main difference for music is the little ones will be less accurate, and also mirrored stereo creates destructive interference which creates sound nulls and frequency response dips.

Three more speakers for $200 would be an inexpensive way to add more speakers for games and movies. More for games though, for movies, more than a few have complained PC speakers being not powerful enough for the job, particularly with vocals (and this is not an issue with how much power you feed the drivers, it's an issue of power compression with small drivers. I.E., bigger drivers with half the power would be louder than doubling, or even tripling the power with the same drivers you have).
June 16, 2007 9:40:14 PM

I have the old Logitech Z-680 connected to my HTPC which the Z-5500 were based off of. They are pretty good speaker for both music and movies. The Z-680 satellite speakers has a faint hiss sound even when nothing is playing. It not really noticeable unless you're in a very quiet room and you are listening for it. I've read that the Z-5500 fixed this problem.

If the new Z-5500 is anything like the model it replaced, then they should basically share the same characteristics. For computer speakers, the highs are pretty tight and the bass is pretty tight was well. Like I said, the are computer speakers. If you want to compare them to real speakers speakers, especially audiophile speakers, then they would simply get blown out of the water.


I just bought the Klipsch Promedia 2.1 yesterday for my primary PC to replace my JBL speakers that finally kicked the bucket after 7 years. I am listening to them right now, currently playing Shadows and Dust by Arch Enemy. Anywaste, the speakers seems pretty good. Again, the tweeters and bass both seem to be clean and tight. However, I haven't really pushed this speakers yet and speakers takes some time to "break in". As to which sounds better, the Z-680 or the Promedia 2.1, that too early to say.

The Klipsch satellite speakers are sturdier and larger than the my Z-680 satellites. There is no remote for these speakers so if that's a priority then get the Z-5500.

The one bad thing about the Promedia 2.1 is that when you turn on the speakers there will be are fairly loud "pop" sound coming from the satellites. I've read one complaint where a guy repeated turned on/off the speakers simply due to normal usage, and the satellites developed problems after sometime. His recommendation was to leave the speakers on all the time. By the way, the power switch is located on the sub-woofer.

You can buy the Klipsch Promedia 2.1 from your local CompUSA $99, but you must hurry since the sale ends today (6/16/07). That's where I got mine.
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June 17, 2007 11:46:59 AM

How if you mods some car audio system? Phas At-28 or Fabolous Acoustic is a very good one for sound quality....

I've got Creative Orange which costs about $100 (for a pair tweeter) but has good sound quality compared to those sold for computer speakers, and you can add some cheap mid speaker as you want quality over loudness...

Home Audio is the best but it's pricy... but the thing with car audio system is you have to mod it....
June 17, 2007 12:27:13 PM

I don't know anything about the Klipsch speaker but i have got two different sets of Logitech. I find all the Logitech range tend towards heavy bass. You can flatten it out but it's always seems slighty off compared to a good hifi quality sound system. Now i'm not really a sound audiophile person but i like a decent sound and the logitechs are fine really for games, films and music. But when i play music i'm always having to fiddle about with the bass using the logitech.I really do think they are aimed more at the gamer/surround sound market than a music one.
If your main use of them is going to be music and there are two similar priced systems to get i'd not get the logitech.
The logitech systems i've got can't be faulted realy for their price and general use but i'd have to say if there is one thing that could do with improvement it's music playback.
June 17, 2007 1:35:12 PM

Hey Man,
I have had creative works speakers, logitech z680's and now the logitech z5500 speakers. If you want audiophile sound research and buy quality componets. If you want really good sound and to not have spend hours and hours trying to find the right equipment then the z5500 is the right choice.

I can say the z5500 are far superior to the z680s better i.e better control pod larger woofer etc.
I will say because i can the best computer speakers out right now are the logitech z5500 hands down. I know its bold statement but these things kick ass and everyone that hears them cant believe the crystal clear sound at earth shattering decibals. I have them paired with a x-fi extreme music sound card. the z5500's pwn dude!

I can honestly say that the clarity and sound is fantastic even though these speakers have a 10'' sub and can supply massive bass i think what makes them kick ass is their clarity,mids and highs. I wont say these are audiophile but they are bad ass. I can hear every little sound in movies and music and thats what i like the most. I just wanna let you know buying these at current price of around 200 is like spending 500 on something else.
I cant believe these guys are comparing the klipsch 2.1 vs the z5500 what a joke!!! there is no contest they cant even compete!!
June 17, 2007 3:13:03 PM

Quote:

I cant believe these guys are comparing the klipsch 2.1 vs the z5500 what a joke!!! there is no contest they cant even compete!!


Since the OP stated he wanted the speakers to listen to music, then the Klipsch Promedia 2.1 should be fine. All CDs only have music coming from 2 channels. DVD-A is a different matter since, they can have music coming from all 5.1 channels.

As I stated before, the Z-680 and presumably the new Z-5500 are great for both music and for watching movies (because of surround sound). What's makes speakers awesome is not the number of speakers there are, but the quality of sound they reproduce.

I haven't yet critically compared both Z-680 and the Klipsch yet. I want to give time for the Klipsch to break-in first so that the sound will stablize (I only had for 3 days). That's typically takes about 100 hours of usage. One thing I can say it that the Klipsch seems to be built more studier than the Z-680 because I can push volume higher on the Klipsch before distortions and rattle starts coming from the sub-woofer and satellite speakers. However, loudness itself is not a very critical component of what makes good speakers. Sound clarity is what's important.

Other things that are important are stagefront and sound separation. But no in hell will you get from inferior PC speakers no matter how well they are built. You'll need to step up to a real sound system for that.
June 17, 2007 4:53:55 PM

2.1 speakers would be fine for music. the op asked klipsch 2.1 or z5500 since dell had a deal since that implied comparison they cant compete imho because i seriously doubt that you're gonna like those klipsch speakers better than z5500. I hear sound from all 5 speakers and a sub and the quality is fantastic.
Ive listened to the klipsch speakers and they didn't sound as good as my z5500s do by a long shot. the z680 which i have sitting in the other room is not made as well as the z5500 and the control pod is not as nice and doesn't even sound as nice as the newer z5500. the z5500 is completely superior to the z680. I agree its not the number of speakers but the quality thats what makes the z5500 so great 5.1 sound with quality sound. Like i said if you want audiophile sound you cant look at pc speakers. If you ask me the best pc speakers are the z5500 period.

Ive owned alot and between my brothers and our friends ive heard quite a few set ups. I can say the sound quality to the average person is simply amazing these speakers do not distort at high volume and sound crystal clear. also keep in mind im using an x-fi sound card. I also agree speakers and headphones need hours of burn in before you get final sound and you cannot get audiophile sound from pc speakers. The best bang for buck for good speakers is z5500 imho. the best sound is z5500 for pc speakers.

jaguarskx is talking about 2 channels and dvd-a i admit i know nothing about that. I can tell you this though the clarity and sound quality on the z5500 is fantastic. If you want better sound you need to go with audiophile equipment. I know jaguarskx is knowledgeable on the subject and the klipsch will work "fine" like he said. If you ask me klipsch or logitech z5500
thats an easy answer its hands down winner z5500. I know jaguar is familiar with the z680 but those get whooped by z5500. I have both sets right now and using both i have multiple computers on a network. anyway thats my 2 cents and not trying to pick a fight with jag hes a nice guy.
June 17, 2007 10:19:04 PM

There's nothing "audiophile" about traditional loudspeakers, which make up far more of the audio market than the PC market.

For some reason "audiophile" has become an ambiguous term for kids to term any speakers other than PC speakers. When you get older, you'll realize PC speakers are the exception, not the other way around.

Even at the retail level, PC speakers only take up a tiny isle at your local electronics superstore, whereas traditional loudspeakers can take up nearly 1/3 of the store (i.e., Best Buy).

This is like kids talking about bicycles and saying cars are some ambiguous high end product that's for "transportphiles"
June 17, 2007 11:08:14 PM

love my 5500s so i guess it is only a question whether they are worth the extra money to you.
June 18, 2007 12:00:30 AM

BOSE companion 3 series- sound great, look great and not too expensive at 250$. I will admit that I eyed the Klipch as well they are very nice.
June 18, 2007 12:32:48 AM

won't have good staging with PC speaker.... If you don't mind too much about clarity, staging, etc.... your speakers are alright...

I'm no expert and it's just based on my experience of hearing PC speakers versus car audio... probably not a good example.. :p  cheers
June 19, 2007 11:32:27 PM

hello
I'm not exactly a kid btw im 31 which is young to some. I have been on to many audiophile websites as of late so forgive me if my terms are not accurate.
I can only say that the z5500 has 2 more speakers etc.etc., but that alone doesn't make it good. its the sound they produce as a whole and the componets involved. anyways I guess you gotta tough choice. I hope all of us gave you enough info.
June 20, 2007 5:06:53 AM

After thinking about it, and seeing my Crocs stock go up another $5, I decided that $200 wasn't going to kill me if things don't work out. I should have the speakers in a week or so and will report back as to my feelings. I did make a quick trip over to my local Frys to check out some of their home entertainment systems just to get an idea of what I would like if I ever win the lottory. Their $16,000 theater setup is probably a better sound than what my new speakers will create. :D  Thanks for the varied and informative comments.
March 1, 2008 7:56:51 PM

astrallite said:
There's nothing "audiophile" about traditional loudspeakers, which make up far more of the audio market than the PC market.

For some reason "audiophile" has become an ambiguous term for kids to term any speakers other than PC speakers. When you get older, you'll realize PC speakers are the exception, not the other way around.

Even at the retail level, PC speakers only take up a tiny isle at your local electronics superstore, whereas traditional loudspeakers can take up nearly 1/3 of the store (i.e., Best Buy).

This is like kids talking about bicycles and saying cars are some ambiguous high end product that's for "transportphiles"



Lol. I don't think they really understand audio and the characteristics/rolls that each component play into what makes audio good and worthwhile over mainstreamed bullshit

Let the kiddies to their HTIB or "computer speakers" and one day, if they think they want good advice on what audio can be, then they should ask. Otherwise, your wasting your time here Astrallite.

BTW, how are those Ascends treating you? You moved on or still with them?
March 1, 2008 8:30:09 PM

I am the owner of the Z-5500 which I just got 1 week ago and let me tell you, better than this, you will NOT find. I been listening to music and I can tell you I listen to things I never did before and thats with my laptop, I currently cant test them with my Audigy 2 ZS since desktop is not working.

Before I had Z-640 which is also a 5.1 setup and let me tell you that music will sound good enough with a 2.1 setup. As long as you have a decent sound card and good speakers. I think Logitech has one called Z-2300 (1 sub 2 speakers silver colored) which are pretty expensive but I heard they produce nice sound since they came out later than the z-5500 so it has improved tech in less speakers which are pretty big.

IMO, you currently got a good set of speakers. I suggest you try one of those nice 2.1 setups from Logitech like the one I mentioned before or a creative HD series and judge yourself. I like 5.1 since I game and watch movies regularly but I also want to let everyone know that Logitech has never let me down with their speakers and Im a happy z-5500 owner.

Z-5500= clear mids, rich highs and super lows.
March 2, 2008 4:49:07 AM

PC speakers are only good for making those annoying windows beeps and sounds.

Honestly, these $50 Insignia speakers I have hooked up to a cheap amp sound about 10x better than any logitech.
March 6, 2008 4:54:57 PM

I have the Logitech Z-530, it was a $55 5.1 setup lol. Works/Sounds pretty good to me...I believe tigerdirect is selling the Z-5500's for around $125 After Rebate.
March 6, 2008 5:30:10 PM

I'll take this another direction.....The new BIOSE systems that are out sound better than anything out there. I'm sure I'll get flamed for that comment but truth is truth.

Cheers

March 6, 2008 5:39:50 PM

poor thread was dug up from its grave...
March 11, 2008 3:40:06 PM

skittle said:
poor thread was dug up from its grave...


9 months later lol
March 16, 2008 5:50:41 AM

fletch420 said:
I'll take this another direction.....The new BIOSE systems that are out sound better than anything out there. I'm sure I'll get flamed for that comment but truth is truth.

Cheers


If you decide to get into audio, and want to learn about theory, the practices, and what its really about, then please visit www.avsforum.com and start reading. You may be suprised.
March 16, 2008 6:48:04 AM

the z-5500s are not very good for music. I replaced klispch 5.1 since they finaly gave out. the z-5500 are horrible for music. The sub is terrirble it drowns out the sound so much that you have to turn it down very low and the music quality is not very good. I would of bought another set of klipschs if the dam subs didnt go out and if they still made them .. In comparison Klipsch is the best i have ever heard for sound. It was a sad day when my set went pooff :( 
March 17, 2008 2:55:50 AM

Lol resurrected from the grave...

Clob, I picked up a pair of Sierra-1's and moved my Ascend 170SEs as rear speakers. The Sierra's are not as critically neutral as the 170SEs (about +/- 0.5db wider variance than the 170SEs). The 1" vertically laminated bamboo enclosure however is so acoustically dead (equivalent to 3" of MDF) that you (as far as I know) cannot find bookshelves at any price point that have such low cabinet resonance. This, THD, and decay times are the three major things that affect a loudspeaker's clarity...the Sierra's have the first in the bag, while the second and third are no worse than the competition at this price point (as far as internet direct speakers go).

I got a single SVS SB-12/plus subwoofer (in piano black to match the Sierra's, hehe) which are phenomenal little subs, for a 40lb sealed sub to hit 22hz +/-3db at it's price point is almost impossible for a finished sub...it's closest competitors at this price point (Epik, Elemental Designs) have either unfinished cabinets or are DIY kits. Anyway, sealed subs are GREAT for music. I got a mic and EQout out the frequency response of the sub to blend in with the speakers. I can't even tell there is a sub when I play music. They say that's a sign of a great subwoofer; you can't even tell that it's there.

Although I have to admit the new SVS MBS-01 bookshelves look PHENOMENAL at the $1k price point. The are almost 30lbs each, but are of MDF construction so from a cabinet resonance point they won't be close to the Sierra's...they are ruler flat like the Ascend 170SEs but are superior in every way...The tweeters in this speaker are $400 alone from Scanspeak (not talking about enclosure cost, cost of the wood or piano gloss finish, the midrange driver, the crossover)...The Sierra's in comparison have $130 SEAs tweeters...although to offset this the cost of cutting VLAM bamboo is prohibitive, even the highest industrial strength diamond tipped drills wear quickly with this material Either way this shows the quality of internet direct speakers and how much you get for the price you pay.

Another thing to mention is AV123 is now selling X-LS encores for $299, apparently half the cost alone are in the drivers. From what I hear they are every bit the acoustical equal of the Ascend 170SEs, although the latter may be slightly more neutral (with the encores with superior bass, which is a trademark of AV123 speakers).

Anyway below are the MBS-01s and the frequency response...





Back on topic for the Logitechs...

As far as PC/desktop speakers go, most companies are moving toward ipod-centric speaker systems and moving away from gaming speakers. Klipsch and Altec Lansing are both selling excellent 2-way speakers for the ipod. It's no surprise for music even Logitech has adopted 2-ways (Pure-fi Elite, Z-10, Z-Cinema)...when competition exists, the consumer has everything to gain, the quality goes up. Whereas Logitech has so much dominance in the gaming sector, they still have an obsolete 1-way system (Z-5500s) as their flagship due to lack of competition. It's all economics...no reason to make a better product if there is no need to.

In regards to Bose...if you like it, all the power to you. But most of the disdain for Bose is it's high cost in relation to what you get...those untreated 2" paper drivers that Bose uses in everything they make cost only a few dollars to manufacture. The enclosures are plastic, which is about as bad as you can get in terms of cabinet resonance. For me Bose is kind of like fancy restaurant food...it looks nice, and you feel "obligated" to say its nice as well...maybe it doesn't taste that bad...but you'd retch if you knew the quality (and what) they used as ingredients.
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