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Questions about PC 2.0 Speakers

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January 14, 2012 5:16:10 PM

Hi audio enthusiasts,
I have a few questions about purchasing and building an audio system for an open concept condo on a third floor building. I have built a high end computer and would like to take advantage of its audio capabilities.
I have an Asus Xonar Essence STX sound card which I would like to get the best possible speaker setup. I realize this card was created for headphones but I want to take advantage of the stereo outputs. Is 2.1 better than 2.0? I understand 2.1 includes an added subwoofer. I would prefer two speakers because of less clutter and space management. Would I be able to get two speakers in 2.0 mode that could manage the lows close to what a added sub would output? I am by no means interested in deep lows due to my living condition. I would however like to have a low end punch for techno music but nothing more than that.
I have done a little research into the department of monitor vs speaker and active vs passive. I have read that monitors give you a rich sound but are designed for near distance. I am looking for a speaker that can be positioned for 20 to 30 ft at manageable angles and still give me the best possible rich sound. So my thoughts were to go with two really nice bookshelf speakers and a 100 x 2 amp. But I was worried I was making this all too complicated and that maybe a pair of high end active speakers would do the job. My price range for everything would be about 600 dollars.
I am completely new to the audio department and lack knowledge in this area, so any help what so ever would be appreciated. To summarize I am looking for speakers that can give me the best possible high end sound at near to mid distance range with manageable positioning. I would be looking for suggestions on setup, manufacturer, model name and any other advice would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks in advance for everyone help!

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January 14, 2012 9:50:40 PM

A quick reply here is that you have a couple of problems.

Bookshelf speakers are made for smaller rooms and lower to mid volume. Guessing that you have an open condo space and the fact that you will be 20-30ft away from the speakers rules out bookshelf speaks. Also, due to the size of the drivers, bookshelf speakers and many monitor speakers(some monitors do) won't have much bass.

In terms of a subwoofer, you can get a 2.0 speaker system that can match a separate subwoofer but usually they are very expensive.

Also, have you even figured in your $600 in the cost of equipment to drive these speakers?

What I would suggest is find a used/new audio dealer in your area. Tell them what your space is and what your needs are. The dealer will let you take the equipment home and try it out for a few days to see if the fit the your needs.

Happy listening, the Prisoner.

Best solution

January 16, 2012 11:40:53 AM
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sears.com used to sell a pair of sony tower speakers which came two in a box for about $120. two of them fill a 18x20 or so space perfectly fine ....unamped out the back of an old tube tv. rather well balanced i would have to say for the price....even gives you some deep rumbling lows without a subwoofer.

you will want to check whichever speakers you get for the power requirements to drive them then compare that with the total output of your soundcards amped headphone jack.

remember both speakers would have to be driven off of one jack...
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January 23, 2012 12:11:10 AM

Best answer selected by samuraixzodus.
January 23, 2012 12:31:37 PM

This is kind of funny cause a computer won't power tower speakers without an external amplifier.
If you are using the computer for audio source, you need powered speakers, or the signal from the computer must go to an external amp first.
So, the best choice would be powered studio monitors, probably.
!