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2.0 Speakers Compilation: Best for <$500 - Page 11

post #151 of 646

Yeah I spent ages reading up about nearfield monitors for my computer set up (as I spend most of my time in front of a screen rather than sat in a chair with my feet up) and under my budget, which would be around <£1000, everything I read always seemed to keep coming back to the Focals as they were generally praised for being accurate, musical and non-fatiguing if used as a desktop hifi speaker rather than for home production.


I got to audition the 40's, 50's and Twins the other week in a basement studio, just to see if they'd live up to the hype. I thought they were fantastic and left me sure that I wouldn't feel like I was missing out on bass response, despite listening to several genres of music where deep bass is prevalent. The Twins, like the 65s are too big for my desk (I physically can't put them on stands either side of it either), they're enormous, however fantastic they sounded - as they should for around £1000 per speaker in the Twins case - but the gap between them and the CMS50s wasn't so great I'd feel like I was missing out greatly. Hearing the 40s next to the 50's however, the obvious difference in low end was enough that I felt I had to get the 50s. I'm sure the 65's would be better still in this regard, but I can only work with the space I've currently got. In a bigger space with more room however, I'd definitely consider a future upgrade to the Twins, although I'm sure at that price range there's probably a lot of competition as well.


The other thing I liked about the Focals was they're designed and made in France, so it's not like they have to travel far if there's any problems. You don't read too much about them here, but I think that's more down to the currency conversion making them quite expensive for US customers, lack of availability compared to things like KRKs e.t.c. (although the Apple Store stocks them). I'd thoroughly recommend anyone looking for desktop speakers to consider them, as they're designed for non-optimum rooms/placement - which is what most of our desks and rooms are - and they seemed to hit all the right boxes in terms of sounding very enjoyable yet accurate and unforgiving. Viva la Focal!

post #152 of 646

Just a warning for the Swans HiVi D1010MKII 08 : I bought a pair in mid March, they look nice and sound great, especially since I paid a good price for them. BUT it's been barely 3 months and the left speaker has blown for no reason at all. It was still fine last night when I was listening to music, but no sound came out of them this morning.


I called up the shop I got them and the dealer no longer carries Swans speakers so I might be out of luck with warranty / repairs ... really really sucks.

post #153 of 646

Bad luck on the Swans :(


I have had my Behringer's for 4 years now, at least 3/4 hours play time a day and always left on, no issues what so ever. They have paid for themselves a few times over in my opinion :) They have been in 3 different setups now (renting sucks)






Ill get around to upgrading once these fail, given how they have been going that could be a while.

Edited by Tsuyosa Eternal - 6/6/11 at 8:52am
post #154 of 646

Re-connected my ancient Altec Lansng 221 speakers and boy, do they sound boomy by comparison! On the plus side, they're side working 7+ years later, while the Swans blew on me within 3 months ...

post #155 of 646

Went to get a new pair of speakers yesterday and ended up getting M-Audio AV40. I'm currently trying to run them in - and at the moment, I can't say they're better than the Swans HiVi D1010MKII 08. The bass port at the back of the AV40s make them more fussy in terms of placement and found the bass a bit overwhelming and not too tight. I've stuffed some socks into the port and the bass improved somewhat. 

post #156 of 646

Hi guys,


I'm looking for a good pair of 2.0's and I'm wondering if anyone has heard the Audioengine A2's and the KRK Rockit Gen 2's?


post #157 of 646

I have a pair of KRK RP6G2's and absolutely love them. They're super clear with plenty of bass and more power than I could ever need.  Even though they're professional grade monitors, they don't need perfect FLAC to sound great and are very forgiving. I highly recommend them.

post #158 of 646

The room I have these in is roughly 9.5Lx7Wx7.5H. Smaller then some peoples closets!


I had gotten the dynaudio BM5A MKII because of it's compact size, yet still able to ROCK the room it was in (about 10 times the size of my "closet office"). Had them for a week until I decided they were simply WAAAY too much speaker for such a small room.

Anyway I just wanted to pass along some advice with this post for anyone looking for a set of speakers to go into a smaller room...
DO NOT let the salesman tell you that you need big speakers. Anything with over a 6.5" woofer will likely be too much.
TRUST your ears. This goes without saying. Go for something that sounds slightly bass shy in the show room. Believe me it will sound fine once you get it setup in the small room :)
Bring a bunch of your favorite high quality music. I'm not talking rap or techno. I like alot of that kind of music, but not much of it is high quality and most of it relies on bass to sound good.

What I ended up with...
After doing a ton of reading on line on different speakers with woofers of <6.5" in size one speaker kept coming up, The Yamaha HS50M. This speaker has a nice flat response and adjustments in the back for much better "room control" to lower bass below 500Hz by 0, -2 and -4dB in case things are a bit too exciting down low. It also has adjustments for mid EQ (+2dB, 0dB & -2dB at 2kHz), high trim (+2dB, 0dB & -2dB at 3kHz) and low-cut (for use with sub) at ether flat (bypass low-cut filter) 80 or 100Hz. Pic below:


"So now that you swapped speakers how do the new ones sound?"
They sound like the speakers I was looking for from the beginning. I have all the controls on the back of the speakers flat with no EQ added. I really hate to sound like people who've just bought their first pair of really high end speakers, but really guys... I'm hearing things I have never heard before. Those things just jump out at me in the mix of the songs and greet me with a friendly "hi". The bass is well controlled and not over bearing like it was with the bm5a's sounded in this room. IMHO the BM5A's sounded a little too "hi-fi". Not very studio monitor sounding. The HS50M is another story altogether. They sound great just sitting back listening to music, but their main job as a studio monitor is apparent in the way they sound "Just the facts no BS". That deliver in spades! To me that isn't a bad thing. It's great to hear things the way the studio engineer thought it should sound.

I also have a couple pairs of Beyerdynamic headphones, the DT770 and DT880. I'm bringing this up because it's what I have to compare to the speakers. The HS50M is like the DT880. Pretty analytical sounding with highs that are are reproduced the same way the recording was done. Just very "revealing" is the best way to describe it. I also heard the HS80M in the store and I'd say they are the DT770's of monitor speakers. With a low end to die for! The texture of bass with the HS80M is ubergood. Overall the HS80M was my favorite speaker in the store in the big room (roughly 20Lx12Wx14H) that they were in.

The main reason I went with the BM5A's to begin with was because they were smaller then the HS80M's. This was a case where I didn't follow my ears. And spent more on a set of speakers that didn't sound quite as good and revealing to get a smaller speaker. Also went with the salesman's recommendation to get the BM5A's because "they were a smaller speaker for a smaller room." Honestly they are in the same size class because the woofer is fairly large. Though the BM5A does have a 6.9" woofer where the yammy's had a 8" woofer. They both had a very healthy bottom end. Though I thought the HS80M just like the HS50M really allow you to hear into the mix more.

My dumb self didn't even think about the HS50M because it didn't put out enough bass for some of the electronic music that I sometimes like to listen to. Frankly I did myself a disservice. These speakers are a a true bargain! They sound fantastic in this little room. For me and my intended uses these were the right ones.

So if you're looking around for something to put in front of you on your desk give these a listen. Don't let the low price make you think they are "bad". Yes, they are made in China and the Dynaudio speakers are made in Denmark. That's part of the reason why the yammys are so low in price.

If you have a much larger room and plan to sit a bit further away from them check out the HS80M. Chances are good you will NOT need a sub with them.

Speaking of price, I was able to find the HS50M's for $142 per speaker on amazon.com. Guitar center matched the price no question :cool:

Excuse the mess, I had to take a pic as soon as I plopped them on the desk :p

post #159 of 646

I really like your diy desktop speaker stands, much nicer looking than my cinder blocks!

Originally Posted by Tsuyosa Eternal View Post

Bad luck on the Swans :(


I have had my Behringer's for 4 years now, at least 3/4 hours play time a day and always left on, no issues what so ever. They have paid for themselves a few times over in my opinion :) They have been in 3 different setups now (renting sucks)






Ill get around to upgrading once these fail, given how they have been going that could be a while.


post #160 of 646

Sorry to revive an old thread, but it seems like it comes up on searches quite a lot, and is quite useful. Mostly just checking if this is up to date...

I'm looking for some speakers that would make use of the sound quality of my Xonar Essence. I mainly use it with headphones, but sometimes it's nice to have background music without wearing anything on your head, - so basically I'm not in for anything professional, just speakers that would have a nice, clear sound; though I wouldn't be extremely picky, it means a lot to have something that performs well for its price.


So far the M-Audio AV40s seem to be the best option... but their size could definitely be an issue... so maybe the Creative T40s?.. or is there a better alternative on the market?..


And I'm only making my first steps towards understanding good audio, so please bear with me.

post #161 of 646

Has anybody tried the Teufel VT11? for about 100 euros seems to be a good alternative to the usual suspects!

Edited by bala - 5/17/12 at 12:06pm
post #162 of 646

Here's another endorsement for the Yamaha HS50M, but to really take them to another level, they should be paired with the Yamaha HS10W subwoofer.  In the $500/pair and below price bracket, the HS50M are the active monitor/speaker to beat.

post #163 of 646
In the 2.1 category the Bose Cinemamate is a real sleeper as a desktop/computer speaker setup. It goes very well with the television as well.
post #164 of 646

Simply looking at a picture of that Bose system, one can begin to see technical drawbacks.  Just look at the size of those satellites.  If it's a sleeper, it's probably for a reason, significant Bose advertising and hype notwithstanding...

post #165 of 646
I have one, it sounds great, and its simulated surround is very effective. The subwoofer is a monster, no need for bigger satellites.
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