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Why do my computer speakers sound so crappy!!!???

post #1 of 110
Thread Starter 
Well, I finished my cmoy a week or so ago, and I've been listeninng with my 580s ever since. I just popped a CD into my computer, and my Cambridge fps1800s sound SO BAD!!!

I'm not experianced enough to pinpoint what it is (mids?) but yech. Guess I hadn't noticed it since my comp speakers are mostly for gaming.

What's wrong?
post #2 of 110

Re: Why do my computer speakers sound so crappy!!!???

- those speakers are designed for gaming, not hifi reproduction.

- most soundcards are affected by pc-intern interferences and have inadequate amps for hifi-sound

- 99% of pc soundcards resample input 44.1 khz -> internally 48 khz -> output 44.1 khz

If you want some uncompromised sound, you might go for this:

- decent hifi-speakers
- Soundcard with true 44.1 khz processing and digital outout
- hifi-amp with integrated d/a converter or external d/a converter and regular amp

Of course, using the analog out, external amp and decent speakers should already give big improvement over your configuration.

post #3 of 110
Thread Starter 
I'm using a fortissimo II
post #4 of 110
You have been listening to HD580s all week, and suddenly you go back to some computer speakers that are complete crap in comparison. They will sound like crap because they are crap. Get it?

Also, the computer is a pretty bad place to haqve audio equipment. Good sounding audi cam come out of a PC, but I have never heard great sounding audio from one.

Why do you think I blast most computer speakers so badly on Ars, if you have noticed? Those $10 each KLH 911Bs sound a bit better then the Klipsch Promedia sattelites, which sound pretty bad if you ask me, but look at the price difference.

As far as sound quality goes, the crappy old Sony carosuel changer my family has blows my computer away in sound.

Edit: Remember how a week ago you were wondering how you will learn how to tell the difference between different equipment? Your ears are getting used to the more accurate sound, and when you hear the less accurate sound, it will stick out much worse. As for what the bad parts are, that would be everything. The FPS1800s aren't bad for very cheap computer speakers, but this is about as unfair as comparing a Ford Pinto to a BMW M5.
post #5 of 110
It has a lot to do with quailty of components as well, i.e. you are talking about a $40 soundcard getting data from a $50 CD-ROM and output to speakers that is made of plastic and from cheap parts. With all the interference and low quailty cables it has, and no shielding of any kind, there's every reason for it to sound bad.

The best thing to do (if you have to money) is take the signal straight from the USB port and into a external DAC (thus bypass the soundcard all together = shorter signal) and amp. The latest HiFi New magazine has such a product and cost £1500, the reviewer say that it was close to the sound from his X-RAY when using it and the computer's CD-ROM. But why spend £1500 for it and you can get the X-RAY for £800 is another thing.
post #6 of 110
That's cause you aren't listening to THESE:



look at this review!!

post #7 of 110
Those speakers are overrated. I heard them at a CompUSA and they sounded like Bose.

(Whoa dang! Layin' the smackdown )
post #8 of 110
There are some nice MicroWorks for sale that are tons better than those Monsoons (hint, hint )
post #9 of 110
I have the 4.1 cambridge fps2000 speaker system with a SB live soundcard (the budget one). Sounds good to me, not the best, but good nonetheless. The best thing is when i plug in my headphones to the audio jack it sounds great, my 7506's opened up much more compared to the PCDP/MD output, very impressed. Just wish the jacks were in the front!

post #10 of 110
I agree with the above, the Monsoons are way too overrated... The CSWs are pretty good though. I still think my FPS1000 sound good, better than Altec Lansing's top of the line THX speakers.
post #11 of 110
Oh, suuuuuuuuure. Something by CAMBRIDGE sounds better than those Monsoons. Uh-huh.

Dude, those Monsoon's take COMMITMENT. Because of the type of speaker they are, there is a small sweet spot, and it's gotta be set up just right to get it; this means no off-axis listening. Yea, sure, like, the MM-2000 probably sounds like a Bose, but, uh, their other stuff doesn't. Do you ever look at Roj's POSTS on 3dss? He's like, as hardcore, bose-hating audiophile as all of you all!
post #12 of 110
Thread Starter 
So I take it if I want good speakers as well, I'll be pouring more and more money into this "hobby?"
post #13 of 110
You take it correctly.
post #14 of 110
Oh, suuuuuuuuure. Something by CAMBRIDGE sounds better than those Monsoons. Uh-huh.

Dude, those Monsoon's take COMMITMENT.
Gluegun, CSW makes great stuff. They're generally regarded as better than Monsoons at a comparable price point, and as "giant-killers" in consumer audio (speakers, table radios, computer speakers, etc.) But hey, don't take my word for it: listen to a set of $150 Monsoons next to a set of $150 CSW. Or put the MegaWorks up against a $300 Monsoon set up. Or the $125 CSW surround system here vs. the Monsoon 505 for $180. You'll believe me then
post #15 of 110
To each, his own, Gluegun.

Though, admittedly, the source driving all of those speakers at Comp USA wasn't really the best possible...

Anyways, for computer speakers, I'd put my money on the Swan M200s anyway...
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