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Beginner Audio System

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Just picked up Moprice 8320s after i saw the thread on this website and decided to seek your expert advice on a new system for college to put in my room. The room is about 10X18 and I don't have roommates so no worries about noise :) 

 

I will be using my laptop(Dell XPS 15) and my phone (Samsung Galaxy S) to play music. The music includes lossless tracks too. I require a speaker system and DAC(which will be used with my phone too). My budget is ~$200. At first i was looking at hi-fi systems like Audioengine A2. But just to keep options open, I'm thinking about buying cheaper systems from Logitech/Altec Lansing/Bose/whatever is there and get a nice DAC as well. I don't mind buying used items. Few things, needs to be loud enough(I usually listen to music very loud) and the bass should blow my mind. As for DAC, should be portable so I can use my phone with it and should be able to handle lossless music. 

I would love to know what you guys have to say/recommend.

 

Cheers

post #2 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by itspb View Post

Just picked up Moprice 8320s after i saw the thread on this website and decided to seek your expert advice on a new system for college to put in my room. The room is about 10X18 and I don't have roommates so no worries about noise :) 

 

I will be using my laptop(Dell XPS 15) and my phone (Samsung Galaxy S) to play music. The music includes lossless tracks too. I require a speaker system and DAC(which will be used with my phone too). My budget is ~$200. At first i was looking at hi-fi systems like Audioengine A2. But just to keep options open, I'm thinking about buying cheaper systems from Logitech/Altec Lansing/Bose/whatever is there and get a nice DAC as well. I don't mind buying used items. Few things, needs to be loud enough(I usually listen to music very loud) and the bass should blow my mind. As for DAC, should be portable so I can use my phone with it and should be able to handle lossless music. 

I would love to know what you guys have to say/recommend.

 

Cheers

Does your Samsung Galaxy S even come with a digital output to hook a DAC up to it?

(my gut say no)

post #3 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

Does your Samsung Galaxy S even come with a digital output to hook a DAC up to it?

(my gut say no)

Umm, you cant use a 3.5mm jack to feed the input to the DAC?

post #4 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by itspb View Post

Umm, you cant use a 3.5mm jack to feed the input to the DAC?

The 3.5mm (1/8, Mini-jack) output on your Galaxy S is an analog signal, which means the audio feed has already gone threw a DAC. and you can't "DAC" twice.

post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

The 3.5mm (1/8, Mini-jack) output on your Galaxy S is an analog signal, which means the audio feed has already gone threw a DAC. and you can't "DAC" twice.

I did not know that. Then how come DACs can work with iPhones or iPods? Because of the 30pin connector? If thats the case, i will be getting a Nexus 7 soon and i'm pretty sure that supports this feature.

post #6 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by itspb View Post

I did not know that. Then how come DACs can work with iPhones or iPods? Because of the 30pin connector? If that's the case, i will be getting a Nexus 7 soon and I'm pretty sure that supports this feature.

It's a $150 (minimum) for an external DAC (30 pin) that works with apple portable products (HRT iStreamer).

and the HRT iStreamer is not really for portable use.

The 30 pin connector on portable apple products usually provides a cleaner analog signal then the headphone jack.

Usually (99%) of the external add-ons for portable apple products are just headphone amplifiers (only).

Apple laptops come with USB ports (digital) which you can plug an external DAC into.

post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

It's a $150 (minimum) for an external DAC (30 pin) that works with apple portable products (HRT iStreamer).

and the HRT iStreamer is not really for portable use.

The 30 pin connector on portable apple products usually provides a cleaner analog signal then the headphone jack.

Usually (99%) of the external add-ons for portable apple products are just headphone amplifiers (only).

Apple laptops come with USB ports (digital) which you can plug an external DAC into.

I see... Thats good, now i only have to worry about the DAC for computer use only. 

 

So which DAC and Speaker combination do you suggest?

post #8 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by itspb View Post

I see... Thats good, now i only have to worry about the DAC for computer use only. 

 

So which DAC and Speaker combination do you suggest?

For your budget, M-Audio MV40 speakers.

The DAC Destroyer, USB-DAC, can sell on eBay for around $70

There are lots of cheaper DACs that sell on eBay and ships from China.

post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

For your budget, M-Audio MV40 speakers.

The DAC Destroyer, USB-DAC, can sell on eBay for around $70

There are lots of cheaper DACs that sell on eBay and ships from China.

There are two versions, http://www.amazon.com/M-Audio-Studiophile-Powered-Speakers-Previous/dp/B000MUXJCO and http://www.amazon.com/M-Audio-Studiophile-Powered-Speakers-Previous/dp/B000MUXJCO. Which one is better? And how about Klipsch Promedia 2.1, Harman Kardon Sound Sticks III, Audioengine A2?

Well, I don't want a DAC just for the sake of it. Even if I'm able to invest in a good speakers now and go for DAC few months later, thats fine with me. 

post #10 of 28

Audioengine A2 are best of those choices. Personally, I think it is much better to get good speakers vs. bad speakers and a DAC (although the Promedia 2.1 and SSIII are actually respectable, from what I understand). It's still a better idea to go with the better speakers and no DAC.

post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by itspb View Post

There are two versions, http://www.amazon.com/M-Audio-Studiophile-Powered-Speakers-Previous/dp/B000MUXJCO and http://www.amazon.com/M-Audio-Studiophile-Powered-Speakers-Previous/dp/B000MUXJCO. Which one is better? And how about Klipsch Promedia 2.1, Harman Kardon Sound Sticks III, Audioengine A2?

Well, I don't want a DAC just for the sake of it. Even if I'm able to invest in a good speakers now and go for DAC few months later, thats fine with me. 

Pro media 2.1 is decent if you get it for under $100.

Laptops are not known for coming with great DACs, just barely decent.

So $60 would give you a better DAC (SD-793), but you can add a DAC any time.

post #12 of 28

Or try something like I posted over here:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/627161/my-very-low-budget-nearfield-desktop-rig-lepai-amp-and-dayton-audio-speakers

 

For a little more power, here's another choice for an amplifier:

 

http://www.amazon.com/AudioSource-AMP-100-Stereo-Power-Amplifier/dp/B00026BQJ6/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pdT1_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=4U2NEAHXZF35&coliid=I203JEKXJXPNN2

 

Add a sub:

 

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-627

 

A set-up like this will blow away most of the 2.1 systems that are sold as computer speakers.


Edited by StratocasterMan - 9/17/12 at 3:07pm
post #13 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by UCLA 15 View Post

Audioengine A2 are best of those choices. Personally, I think it is much better to get good speakers vs. bad speakers and a DAC (although the Promedia 2.1 and SSIII are actually respectable, from what I understand). It's still a better idea to go with the better speakers and no DAC.

 

I believe the same because I can get better DAC later on. So I'm thinking of A2s or the config suggested by StratocasterMan.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

Pro media 2.1 is decent if you get it for under $100.

Laptops are not known for coming with great DACs, just barely decent.

So $60 would give you a better DAC (SD-793), but you can add a DAC any time.

 

Couldn't find Pro Media 2.1. I'm aware of that but the DAC in mine sounds fine with my SteelSeries 5Hv2. I plan to add a DAC later on, so for now, just the speakers. I'm thinking about A2s or the confg suggested by StratocasterMen.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by StratocasterMan View Post

Or try something like I posted over here:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/627161/my-very-low-budget-nearfield-desktop-rig-lepai-amp-and-dayton-audio-speakers

 

For a little more power, here's another choice for an amplifier:

 

http://www.amazon.com/AudioSource-AMP-100-Stereo-Power-Amplifier/dp/B00026BQJ6/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pdT1_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=4U2NEAHXZF35&coliid=I203JEKXJXPNN2

 

Add a sub:

 

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-627

 

A set-up like this will blow away most of the 2.1 systems that are sold as computer speakers.

 

This is very interesting. I actually plan to do this. Can you tell me more about the sound quality. How is the bass? Are the speakers loud enough? Cnet post says the sound isn't as bassy as Audioengines A2. And which DAC would you recommend?


Edited by itspb - 9/17/12 at 4:23pm
post #14 of 28

The sound quality is extremely good considering the price. The speakers are non-ported, but they do have 6 1/2" woofers. Ported speakers tend to produce more bass, but often it is boomy and not very accurate bass.The speakers are also pretty sensitive which helps them play loud without needing as much power as some other speakers.

 

Be sure to read the CNET link here:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13645_3-57439115-47/build-your-own-desktop-stereo-for-under-$70/

 

If you really want bass, add the sub I mentioned. The sub has it's own amplifier and some of the low frequencies that would have been directed to the speakers will go to the sub instead. This will let the main amplifier drive the speakers louder because the built-in amplifier in the sub will handle the low bass. Of course, you could always try the speakers first and add the sub whenever you want.

post #15 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by StratocasterMan View Post

The sound quality is extremely good considering the price. The speakers are non-ported, but they do have 6 1/2" woofers. Ported speakers tend to produce more bass, but often it is boomy and not very accurate bass.The speakers are also pretty sensitive which helps them play loud without needing as much power as some other speakers.

 

Be sure to read the CNET link here:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13645_3-57439115-47/build-your-own-desktop-stereo-for-under-$70/

 

If you really want bass, add the sub I mentioned. The sub has it's own amplifier and some of the low frequencies that would have been directed to the speakers will go to the sub instead. This will let the main amplifier drive the speakers louder because the built-in amplifier in the sub will handle the low bass. Of course, you could always try the speakers first and add the sub whenever you want.

 

I read the CNET link. Looks good. If you say there is some bass, I can get the sub later, no worries. So Dayton Speakers, Lepia LP 2020A+ and FiiO E17? Is that the best that I can get for my money? Any other options on amps or DACs? One more thing, while going through your thread, I noticed the treble bypass. Can you explain on how to do that?

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