I'm building a new desktop PC and am looking for high quality speakers to replace the old Logitech Z4s that I've been using for the past 5 and a half years. After doing a fair amount of research I've found the Audioengine A5 and Swan M200 to be the two most frequently recommended computer speakers for under $500, but I'm still having a hard time deciding which to get and if the newer versions are worth the extra money.
Right now these are the four I'm looking at:
- Audioengine A5 ($299.00)
- Swan M200MkII ($317.39)
- Audioengine A5+ ($399.00)
- Swan M200MkIII ($467.39) [Currently out of stock]
- Is there a clear winner out of these, or do they all perform similarly enough that it wouldn't make much of a difference which I chose?
- Is the Audioengine A5+ worth the extra $100.00 over the Audioengine A5? What exactly is the difference, other than the A5+ being newer?
- Likewise, is the M200MkIII worth the extra $150.00 over the M200MkII, plus the time waiting however long until they come back in stock? How noticeable of a difference is there between the two?
- How necessary is a subwoofer with any of these speakers? And (forgive me if this is a dumb question) would I be able to hook up the subwoofer from my old Logitech Z4s to work with these?
- My new PC will be using an Asus P9X79 WS motherboard. Given the audio specs of that motherboard, would there be any significant advantage of purchasing an additional sound card for use with my speakers and headphones (Audio-Technica ATH-M50s) or would I be just as good going with the onboard sound?
- Right now both my speakers and headphones are connected to an ART HeadAmp4 Four Channel Stereo Headphone Amp which is connected to my Xonar DG sound card in my old computer. Assuming I stick with the P9X79 WS for my onboard sound in the new computer, what would be the best way to connect the speakers and headphones? Simply connecting them to the standard audio jacks in the motherboard with the supplied cables, connecting them to the HeadAmp4 Amplifier which would connect to the motherboard or using something like the Audioengine D1 DAC? I've seen lots of posts recommending the D1 DAC but I don't know if it would be necessary or how much benefit it would offer me when paired with my motherboard, headphones and any of the above speakers.
Sorry about the noob-ish questions, still pretty new to all this so any help is much appreciated. Thanks in advance!
Edited by dorsia - 9/9/12 at 12:55pm