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Thread: PC Speakers

  1. #1
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    PC Speakers

    PC Speakers

    Tips
    1. Sound
    2. Cost


    Set a budget for GOOD speakers. IMHO, speakers and keyboards/mouse and Monitors are items that are seldom upgraded. Therefore spend good money on such things as those things are which you interact with your computer. I can understand what its like being a poor student or just being poor, but remember, there's always something for your budget

    Sound is INCREDIBLY important to a lot of people. I find good music therapeutic for my soul especially after a long day at work. Nothing like plugging in 'Hell Freezes Over' and listening to excellent tunes by Eagles.

    There is an AMAZING amount of selection for PC speakers. This list will try and guide you to what is available and to some reviews done by our members right here on PCPER forums. Take the info in good faith and not all of us are audiophiles. So before plonking down your hard earned cash..... have a good listen, as you may find your musical taste totally alien to what our fellow members have written.

    Power Ratings
    I think that power ratings are overrated.
    There are a few numbers that you need to be aware of when buying speakers

    1. Sensivity/Efficiency
    2. Frequency Range
    3. Total No of Speakers


    Sensitivity
    This number determines how easy it is to drive the speaker. Horn speakers are incredibly efficient/sensitive. JBL and Klipsch are 2 noted horn speaker manufacturers.
    Klipsch puts out sensitivity ratings @ 98db/w/m.
    This means that for every 1 WATT the speaker gets, the volume it will push out is 98db if measured at one meter away from the speaker.

    Consider that with some other types of speakers who rate their speakers @ 88db/w/m. You would need 10 watts to get it to 98db as every 3db requires 2x the power.

    RULE OF THUMB
    1) you would need about 10x power to increase the volume by 10db.

    10db increase in volume = 101 = 10 W
    20db increase in volume = 102 = 100W
    30db increase in volume = 103 = 1000W



    A lot of speaker manufacturers also put very misleading numbers on their boxes.. Some will quote 1000W PMPO... which is meaningless as such power is only available for less than a second. RMS vs PMPO

    I have a set of Cambridge Soundworks DTT2500. They are rated @69W RMS. But the power brick I have is rated @ 35W RMS. So there is no way I'm getting the 69W RMS to play with. trust me on this tho... its enough for my computer room.... cranking it up.. I probably do about 20~25W and its BLOODY LOUD

    READ: Here.

    Frequency Range
    Human hearing is from 20hz to 20,000Hz (20KHz). All PC speaker manufacturers will quote that their speakers can do the entire human hearing range.This is *ahem* BOLLOCKS. Very few Hifi subs go down to 20Hz. and a lot of the PC speakers without a tweeter cut out @ 16KHz. You might even find a huge hole from 200Hz to about 280Hz (usually the range from the sub and the sats). IMHO.. these are PC speakers. for the money.. they do a good job. if you want to get the real Hifi experience... PC speaker don't cut it.

    Also, you want a speaker that reproduces a nice flat line from the frequencies it can do. there's no point having a speaker which accentuates certain frequencies and colors the sound. the accepted level of fluctuation is 3db.

    ie: 50hz to 12Khz +3db

    Total Harmonic Distortion:
    When an amplifier is driven with a signal, the output of the amplifier is an amplified version of the input signal PLUS any distortion created by the amplifier. All amplifiers and signal processors add distortion to the signal. The levels of harmonic distortion in a high quality amplifiers are sooooo far below audibility that they are basically of no concern. When someone tells you that one amplifier is definitely going to sound better because its THD is rated at .002% vs an amp with .05%, you can be pretty sure that he doesn't know what he's talking about. Many people believe that THD below 1% is not audible and I believe they're probably correct. The fact is, especially in an automobile, the amplifier is the least of your worries. Speakers used for mids and highs commonly produce between 1% an 5% THD and for subwoofers the numbers can easily reach 10%. This doesn't even take into account all of the resonances of all of the plastic and metal panels in the vehicle.
    From here


    No of Speakers
    The number of speakers depends on what you want to use it for.

    2.0/2.1 speakers - Music and for those with space constraints. A good set may outperform a similar priced 5.1 set.
    4.1 - used for gaming. Some may allow Stereo x2 and allow the use of the rear speakers during music.
    5.1 - DVD's (duh?!)
    6.1 - DVD's with Dolby Digital EX or DTS -ES. This are 'matrixed' signals and generated from the 2 rear surround channels to create a rear centre channel. Some DVD's have a Discrete Rear centre channel. check.
    7.1 - THX -EX .... There are NO DVD's in 7.1 format. What happens is that there is extra processing and the surrounds are stretched to the other speakers.

    Also read
    Dan's letters
    here regarding audio stuff. (mainly headphones and cables)

    Conclusion
    So listen to the speaker first before buying them. Your ears will thank you.

    I suggest bringing along your favourite CD's/DVD's to the shop to have a good listen or buy from a reputable dealer with a good RMA process.
    and oh yeah...

    Enjoy the music.....
    Last edited by lidistick; 07-20-2004 at 11:56 PM.

  2. #2
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    Creative speakers



    Gigaworks/Megaworks

    7.1 Gigaworks S750


    5.1 Gigaworks S700 Reviewed here by Ozzy

    6.1 Megaworks 650 Reviewed here by lidistick

    5.1 Megaworks 550 Reviewed here by toothpick

    2.1 Megaworks 250D

    Inspires

    7.1 Inspires T7700

    5.1 inspires T5400

    Creative Inspire T5400 5.1 Speakers -- $77.00
    This one was the unknown for us. The only things I had in mind going into Circuit City was what lidistick said ("I haven't heard the new inspires.. but if I can go on my previous experience..YEECK."). So after listening to them here is what I have to say : The highs are almost as crisp as the Klipsch 2.1s and the mids were about equal. I think it had to do with the fact that it had dedicated tweeters for highs and then smaller drivers dedicated for mid (just like the Klipschs). The bass was cearly quiet, below balanced. I am not sure if its just a matter of setting it properly in the equalizer but it was quiet enough that it disturbed me. I would encourage these in a heart-beat for anyone who is not going to need a lot of bass.
    - here - thx Nytmare!
    Last edited by lidistick; 08-02-2004 at 02:49 AM.

  3. #3
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    Klipsch

    Klipsch



    Note: click on the pic to go the the manufacturers page.
    5.1 Ultras
    Quote Originally Posted by Pluto Prime
    Hi, I will be quick and brief:

    SB Audigy Gamer 5.1
    Klipsche Promedia 5.1


    Pros:
    Broken Glass
    Complaining Neighbors
    Better sound quality than video

    Cons:
    Bleeding Ears
    Broken Glass
    Complaining Neighbors
    Better sound quality than video
    here

    Klipsch ProMedia Ultra 5.1 Personal Audio System -- $344.00
    So your thinking this is another total win for Klipsch right? WRONG! These just didn't sound great. Although it could produce crisp highs & mids, it felt liek it was missing notes. There were sounds that we could hear on the 2.1s that almost didn't show up on the 5.1s. We thought "they are both Klipsch, they are both Promedia, what gives?" After closer examination we found this ::
    Picture of satellite of the Klipsch 2.1s - http://www.klipsch.com/media/Products/76_large.jpg
    Picture of satellite of Klipsch 5.1 Ultras - http://www.klipsch.com/media/Produc..._alt3_large.jpg
    The cone is different. Maybe there was some sort of technology change & it wasn't for the better. I am just guessing here. Like i said, the 5.1s just didn't sound as clear. That doesn't mean they sucked, they just weren't great. THey were OK.
    - here- by Nytmare

    5.1 GMX

    2.1 GMX Reviewed here by Max PC
    Klipsch Promedia GMX A-2.1 Personal Audio System -- $121.00
    They sounded pretty good, about equal with the Logitech Z-3s (see farther down). Not Klipsch Promedia THX 2.1 good but close. Sounded not as full and a little lacking in mids. I think this is a result of their "technology" change again since they had a different speaker cone design (again, see link in reference to the two links above, http://www.klipsch.com/media/Produc..._info_large.jpg ) and they looked ugly!
    - by Nytmare

    4.2 Promedias

    2.1 Promedias
    Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX Certified Personal Speaker -- $160
    These where THE BEST BY FAR that we heard all day and that I have ever heard. The main things that we noticed where the very crisp highs & mids. The bass wasn't too powerful, it was balanced. The wierdest thing was that it was very "full" (odd word to describe sound me thinks). Standing in front of them made it sound like they were right next your ear, like headphones, but not.
    - here- Nytmare


    PM 5.1 Vs Z-680
    Last edited by lidistick; 08-02-2004 at 02:50 AM.

  4. #4
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    Logitech



    Z-680

    Z-5300
    Logitech Z-5300 5.1 THX Certified Speaker System -- $139.00
    We tested these side-by-side with the two Klipsch systems, meaning we knew what great would sound like in comparison to these. They sounded better than the Z-640s but still suffered from one main thing, lack of crisp highs. Once again, this must be because of the lack of dedicated tweeter to produce those highs. The mids were about equal to the Klipsch 2.1s. The bass was a little over-powering but lowering its volume brought it under control. The interesting thing happened when a rap song came on. It sounded equal to the Klipsch 2.1s! I would say that Z-5300s are good depending on your music style. If you like songs that depend a lot on mids n lows, Z-5300s matched the best, the Klipsch 2.1s IMHO.
    - here -By Nytmare

    Z-560
    Quote Originally Posted by Eurofilth
    I'm using Logitech's THX certified Z560 4.1 surround sound system. For around $125 it's the biggest bang for you buck......at least that's what I think. The sound is crisp and clear and the BASS is incredible. I keep mine at the lowest setting and I can still see my mouse jumping when I turn up the volume
    here

    Z-2200 - Reviewed here by Jungleman.
    Quote Originally Posted by geekkyyy
    they are great, lots of power, got to turn the bass down , otherwise it will drown out the music. got in a small room , plenty big. got the klipsch 4.1 in the bedroom, sort of wished i didn,t get the 4 speakers, but they are okay if you want to upset the neighbors.
    Z-640
    Quote Originally Posted by musicman121
    I just wanted to come back and post an update. I've had the Z-640's hooked up for about a week now. I'm pretty happy with them. They won't shake the foundations, but they'll go louder than I can comfortably sit in front of them at the computer. I've been watching dvd movies through my computer, and the sound quality seems pretty good to me. These speakers seem like a good balance between quality and price. If you need to shake the foundation, or project sound through the entire neighborhood, then go for something more powerful, but if all you're wanting to do is sit at your computer and enjoy some good sound, then these are for you!
    here

    Logitech Z-640 5.1 Speaker System -- $47
    Worst speakers we tried in the day. Some high notes were just not there! Like they didn't exist! Mids where fine but not crisp. Bass was a little over-powering, but thats just a matter of turning it down. This may have to do with the fact that its satellites are all just one small driver. One driver (that should be for mids) that has to try and produce the highs too...
    - here- by Nytmare

    Z-620

    Z-220

    Z-3
    Logitech 2.1 Z-3 Speakers -- $55.00
    They were pretty close to the Klipsch Promedia 2.1s but it sounded flat. Somehow they SOUNDED like they were coming from 2 speakers in front of you. The klipschs felt full.
    here - by Nytmare
    Last edited by lidistick; 09-01-2004 at 03:49 AM.

  5. #5
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    Altec Lansing



    VS3151

    251

    FX6021 -Reviewed here by Jungleman
    Quote Originally Posted by lidistick
    These guys are very tall and slim. Nice sounding but not as much body and weight in music. I heard them while they were playing Eric Clapton's I shot the sheriff. Pleasantly nice.... but not outstanding.T'was more expensive than the MX5021 but not as good IMHO.
    VS 3121

    MX5021 Reviewed here by Xman & by Sangram & by Jungleman & Here
    Quote Originally Posted by lidistick
    Man these things are HUGE!! Saw a set of them at the NZ version of Best Buy. was playing Rod Stewarts Maggie May. Good solid and tight bass. very well defined midrange and brilliant highs. Loads of power meant it was effortless when I tried to 'test' the total volume. Excellent for stereo music. Pricey tho. Recommended.
    VS4121

    VS2121
    Last edited by lidistick; 09-23-2004 at 09:55 PM.

  6. #6
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    Swans

    Swans




    M200 2.0 $170 @ Newegg. Recommended.


    M-Audio


    Reviewed here
    Last edited by lidistick; 07-20-2004 at 05:10 AM.

  7. #7
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    Re: Swans

    Quote Originally Posted by lidistick
    Swans




    M200 2.0 $170 @ Newegg. Recommended.
    Review here

    Mod Edit:
    and here
    Last edited by lidistick; 07-20-2004 at 05:21 AM.

  8. #8
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    Re: Swans

    Quote Originally Posted by lidistick
    Swans




    M200 2.0 $170 @ Newegg. Recommended.

    Swans T200A
    Specifications:
    Configuration: 2.0
    Frequency Range: 60Hz - 20,000Hz
    Power Output: 40W
    $389.00 newegg



    Swans T120
    Specifications:
    Configuration: 2.1
    Power Output: 80 W
    Frequency Response: 45Hz - 20,000Hz
    Signal To Noise Ratio: 80dB
    Remote: Wired
    $160.00 newegg

    Last edited by cupidX; 08-06-2004 at 04:28 AM.
    Celeron 2.0G oc 3.3GHz
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    Diamond MX100,MX200,MX300,MX400,Hercules Fortissimo II,Terratec SixPack 5.1+,Turtle Beach Santa Cruz

  9. #9
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    Re: PC Speakers

    I don't know whether they can be found and how much in your country , but they are so pretty,high quality and not expensive in our country I give their picture to share with you











    Celeron 2.0G oc 3.3GHz
    TwinMOS TwiSTER PC3200 768MB
    WD 800JB
    Sapphire Radeon9000
    Hyundai ImageFlat Q775D
    Delta Electronics DPS-320EB-1
    3Com 3C905-TXM
    Diamond MX100,MX200,MX300,MX400,Hercules Fortissimo II,Terratec SixPack 5.1+,Turtle Beach Santa Cruz

  10. #10
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    Re: PC Speakers



    - Reviewed here $CA400 here

    - Reviewed here $CA 150 here

    Note: I have it on good and trusted advice that these speakers are awesome. They've been in Malaysia for a wee while now and they are taking the market by storm due to their value.
    Last edited by lidistick; 10-06-2004 at 03:35 AM.

  11. #11
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    Re: PC Speakers

    For those who have experience... which one is a better speaker for music, dvd and general gaming?

    Logitech Z-2300 THX 2.1
    at here

    or

    Swans T-120
    at here
    Thanks

  12. #12
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    Re: PC Speakers

    hey
    im looking at buying a nice 5.1 surround sound system for my computer. its in a 13'x12' room, and i have a sound blaster! live 24-bit sound card...i dont have alot of money (im only 15 after all), and 3 systems that seem to be rather popular are the logitech x530's, the Cyber Acoustics A-5640RB and the creative inspire p5800..any ideas on these or other high-quality, low-price 5.1 (or 4.1 i suppose) speaker systems??
    -john

  13. #13
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    Re: PC Speakers

    This thread needs to be updated. Logitech released the market leading (by far) speakers Z-5500. I call the Z-5500 the klipsch killer.

    Anyways this is a very old thread.

    Anyways, I'll address RacerX: I would recommend the Logitech X-530 as they are some of the most high quality speakers. It all depends on how much money you have (need an exact amount of what your budget is).

  14. #14
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    Re: PC Speakers

    Quote Originally Posted by GiancarloC
    This thread needs to be updated.
    Go for it. I've done what I can. this forum is only what you make of it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Giancarlo
    Logitech released the market leading (by far) speakers Z-5500. I call the Z-5500 the klipsch killer.
    Thats' YOUR opinion seeing that there is no objective or substantiated proof.


    Anyways, I'll address RacerX: I would recommend the Logitech X-530 as they are some of the most high quality speakers. It all depends on how much money you have (need an exact amount of what your budget is).
    PC speakers are pc speakers. They are not 'high-quality' speakers. The logitechs give reasonable bang-for-buck and are great on a tight budget. But speakers are sooo subjective so listen, listen and listen (with music you are familliar with) and then make an educated decison.

    Good luck.

  15. #15
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    Re: PC Speakers

    I think its great that we even have the debate going on now like intel amd or nvidia ati all it does is make 2 companies push hard to get your money and we all win from that.I think both kick ass and anyone would enjoy having either so called "pc speakers" LOL that will shake rattle and roll your living space!
    ASUS Sabertoothz77 T.U.F Series
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    Logitech Z5500 5.1 505 watt all optical on SB X-fi 5.1 external

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