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Speaker recommendation

Last response: in Home Audio
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February 4, 2010 10:53:36 AM

Hi all!

i'd need all your expert opinions before making a speaker purchase.

i have a high end PC on which i watch alot of movies, play all sorts of games and i'm a music lover! really love music!

i want to buy a 5.1 channel sound system within a semi-budget but i will be obliged to squeeze alil out of my pocket if its worth it :sol: 

my room aint that big so i'd want to stick with 5.1's

Thanx!

More about : speaker recommendation

February 4, 2010 10:57:52 AM

i'l b wall mounting them and mayb on my desktop
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February 5, 2010 9:35:42 PM

Depends on your budget. Since you say "high end PC" and haven't specified a budget range, I will guess in the $800 range.

Since it sounds like you want small speakers to wall mount, Energy Take 5s are an incredible deal. ($200) For a subwoofer, Hsu are considered amongst the most musical and fast hitting subwoofers you can buy. The Hsu STF-1 goes flat to 25hz (-3db) and works wonderful in a small room. ($299). Finally, for an amplifier, Onkyo provides probably the most power, but requires a lot of space to dissapate heat. Yamaha on the other hand, is quite excellent in terms of features and it has good power as well ($299). This comes to a total of $798.

Energy Take 5
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hsu STF-1
http://hsuresearch.com/products/stf-1.html

Yamaha RX-V465
http://www.amazon.com/Yamaha-RX-V465BL-5-Channel-Theate...

Finally you should head over to monoprice and grab a roll of 16 gauge speaker wire. About $7.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&...
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February 6, 2010 1:36:43 AM

Awesome ! but what if i slashed the budget down to $500 USD :) 
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February 6, 2010 2:32:14 AM

can i also get speakers that are a little smaller than the Take5's (@ least the satellites) ?
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February 6, 2010 5:54:34 AM

Dayton Audio Sub 80 is excellent for its price ($75).

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?Partnumber...

You are down to $574.

As far as speakers go, you cant find anything that beats the value of the Take 5s at this price. You will thank me later, but satellites...are just terrible.

The only satellites that are worth considering at your price range is the Klipsch Quintets, and for 5 speakers I believe the lowest price is $250...above the Take 5s. The Take 5s weigh slightly less than 3lbs. You should have no problem wall mounting or fitting them on your desk.

-----

The question is, HOW much do you love music? You don't get much value getting 5 speakers + sub if your main goal is music. Music is predominantly stereo (2 channel).

If your MAIN goal is music, 2 bookshelves+amp/receiver or a pair of powered monitors would be your best bet.

In fact, unless you have at least $300 to put down on a sub like that STF-1 (or less used), I would ditch the idea of a sub completely, since anything below will largely have trouble meshing with your music. A GOOD subwoofer you do not HEAR, otherwise something is wrong, because the sound recording has no bass channel. It should be invisible and mesh with the main speakers. If you can tell which direction the bass is coming from, chances are your subwoofer is just not very good. This is because true bass (below 80hz) is non-directional. If you can tell where the sub is, it is distorting at harmonic frequencies well above 80hz, which is why you can tell where the bass is coming from. The multimedia pc subwoofers out there sound like someone blowing through a toilet paper tube.

If you want to go powered monitor route, the Swan M200s are probably the best PC speakers ever made.

http://www.theaudioinsider.com/product_info.php?product...

If you are really a die hard music fan, this is my #1 recommendation:

1) Buy a pair of bookshelves
2) Buy a receiver
3) Save money for more speakers + sub

I have owned the Altec Lansing ATP4s, MX5020s, Logitech Z-680s before moving to bookshelves + subwoofer. The difference is night and day and you hear details in the music you never realize were there. The room fills with sound because bookshelves disperse sounds extremely well, whereas those tiny satellites beam sound like lasers.

I actually ended up ditching the subwoofer because I found there was a little too much bass from "small room bass reinforcement". I'm currently running a pair of high end bookshelf speakers with a receiver and the sound is just...heavenly.

Let me know if this is something you'd like and I'll shoot some suggestions over. Otherwise, I don't believe you can find a better deal than the Take 5s for surround at this price range.
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February 6, 2010 3:27:51 PM

well - you totally read my brain waves! Music is my #1 goal but i like watching movies and playing games just a lil notch down :)  i cant stop but pay attention to the layers in music - i listen to alot of electronic music - paul van dyk, bt, blah blah.

My room's quite small - 120sft +/- and i didnt know that you could get kick@## speakers with that amount :heink: 

so i need to re-think. i have a shelf in my room (studio room, where i work on my projects+spend most of my time on the PC/music) The shelf is located behind me and to my right,and my drafting table is on my left - behind me ofcourse. Dimensions might not be an issue. Though i can check.

With all this in mind i hope u can give me more suggestions. I have a soft corner for Bose systems - though i'm limited in budget to abt $400 maximum - but hopefully i can go to $500.

Im a nube when it comes to GOOD sound systems for the PC and if it helps this is my rig specs:

Asus Rampage extreme
Q9550
OCZ DDR3 4GB 1333
Supreme FX x-fi sound card -
xfx 8600 GT Fatal1ty DDR3 version
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February 7, 2010 9:19:05 AM

be careful good speakers need good sound cards.
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Best solution

February 7, 2010 7:25:08 PM

Try this:

Sherwood 5.1 receiver ($172 shipped).

http://www.amazon.com/Sherwood-RD6513-Dolby-Digital-Rec...

Energy Take 5s ($199)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Dayton Sub 80 ($75)

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?Partnumber...

This should come out to $450.

As far as Bose goes, unless you are talking about the x01 series from the 70s (which were pretty good back then), their modern speakers are just clock radios designed for decor-conscious older people who need invisible speakers. Acoustically they are no better than your typical PC satellite speakers (I'm being generous here, they are probably worse than high end PC speakers); they really are nothing more than a couple of thin plastic cans. The satellites replacement drivers that you can request from Bose cost $2 (low quality untreated paper drivers) and the satellites themselves are built with thin cheap plastic enclosures. That should give you an idea of build quality...it's basically a product with 95% markup. I doubt their $1000 acoustimass systems cost more than $50 to manufacture.

To give you an idea what a value product is, in my bedroom I have a pair of Ascend Sierra 1 bookshelf speakers that go for $800/pair. The tweeters that Ascend purchase from SEAs of Norway cost $200/each, or $400/pair. Include the cost of diamond drill bits for industrial cutting tools needed to cut through 3/4" solid bamboo enclosures, the long-throw injection-molded poly midrange/woofers, and a high gloss piano black automotive finish and you are talking about $600 manufacturing costs. After shipping and handling, I doubt they make more than 25%, a fraction of Bose's margins. It's called name brand markup. That said, it's your money, if you want to buy it, it's your prerogative.

And to your room, it's about 11x11 as I understand it? It's not THAT small. I'm running a pair of bookshelf speakers that run 60lbs on 80lbs of solid metal stands and they work fantastic in a 166sq foot office (only slightly bigger than your room).

Lutfij said:
well - you totally read my brain waves! Music is my #1 goal but i like watching movies and playing games just a lil notch down :)  i cant stop but pay attention to the layers in music - i listen to alot of electronic music - paul van dyk, bt, blah blah.

My room's quite small - 120sft +/- and i didnt know that you could get kick@## speakers with that amount :heink: 

so i need to re-think. i have a shelf in my room (studio room, where i work on my projects+spend most of my time on the PC/music) The shelf is located behind me and to my right,and my drafting table is on my left - behind me ofcourse. Dimensions might not be an issue. Though i can check.

With all this in mind i hope u can give me more suggestions. I have a soft corner for Bose systems - though i'm limited in budget to abt $400 maximum - but hopefully i can go to $500.

Im a nube when it comes to GOOD sound systems for the PC and if it helps this is my rig specs:

Asus Rampage extreme
Q9550
OCZ DDR3 4GB 1333
Supreme FX x-fi sound card - http://www.overclock3d.net/gfx/articles/2008/07/07233101940l.jpg
xfx 8600 GT Fatal1ty DDR3 version
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February 7, 2010 7:50:48 PM

:)  thanx for the insight! Ok now that i'll b ordering these in a short while... what sort of cables do i need to get in conjunstion to my soundcards connectivity or do i get them with the reciever,speakers and sub?
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February 7, 2010 8:29:48 PM

With an optical digital out you can only get 2 channel music or compressed surround sound like Dolby Digital or DTS. In order to get surround with games (which have uncompressed multichannel sound) you would need some sort of software solution that can compress game sound to Dolby Digital. Now as I understand it the X-Fi is capable of Dolby Digital encoding (called Dolby Digital Live) but the drivers are hard to find.

The easiest thing is to use the 6 channel analog outputs you have. Home theater equipment uses RCA inputs for analog connections--the typical red (right channel) and white (left channel). PC connections use the 1/8" stereo minijack connection which combines both the red and white into a single connection.

You need 3 stereo minijack to RCA converters, one for the left/right, one for center/sub, and one for surround left/right.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&...

You also need an RCA single cable to run from the receiver to the subwoofer.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&...

You need speaker wire so the receiver can power the speakers:

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&...

And for your convenience alone, you can put these on either end of your speaker wires to make plugging and unplugging the speakers easy:

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=104&...

You would need 2 pairs for each speaker, or 10 pairs for 5 speakers.

So
1) 3 x RCA to minijack cables
2) 16 gauge speaker wire
3) rca single cable for sub
4) banana plugs (your choice if you dont like bare wire ends).





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February 8, 2010 7:10:31 AM

Brilliant! I'm off!
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February 8, 2010 7:11:18 AM

Best answer selected by Lutfij.
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