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5.1 Compact System WITHOUT dedicated amplifier for Computer setup?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi there!

 

As noted in my profile, I'm almost as into computer speakers/home theatre speakers as I am into headphones...

 

I want to set up a 5.1 system in my room, but it has to be relatively compact with NO dedicated amplifier (i.e. the subwoofer has to have an integrated amp to power the whole system).

 

My home theatre upstairs has an amazing $8k-ish Martin Logan Electrostatic Surround system 5.1 (2x Front MartinLogan ESL Electromotion with Audioquest CV8 cables; Center/Rear L/R surrounds: 3x ML Fresco i; and a ML Grotto i subwoofer) with a TOTL Yamaha amp, which is amazing, but I can't fit that in my room.

 

I'm currently using a 2.0 Harman/Kardon GLA-55, which is also amazing. But I want surround 5.1 in my room.

 

I've already tried and disliked the Klipsch Promedia Ultra 5.1 -- from like 2003 loooooll////

 

Any suggestions? Are there even any on the market besides Klipsch and Logitech, both of which are entry-consumer level? I've bought the $50 (on sale) Logitech Z506, just as a joke because I was curious how $50 5.1 surround would sound like (spoiler alert: NOT good). 

 

Thanks in advance!

post #2 of 16

Check if you have a dealer near you or can ship these to you:

http://www.swanspeaker.com/products/products.aspx?cid=5&sid=0&pid=20

post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post
 

Check if you have a dealer near you or can ship these to you:

http://www.swanspeaker.com/products/products.aspx?cid=5&sid=0&pid=20

WOW THOSE ARE BEAUTIFUL. Can't find any really though through google except for from china though... which I'm not sure I trust despite better audio coming from China in the recent years (Little Dot, VSonic, etc.) 

 

Pretty cheap too, at around ~300-400 USD equivalent (2400 chinese dollars, +/-).

 

These would require a sound card too however, for the 6 inputs. I ran into the same problem with my Klipsch Promedia Ultra 5.1 because I run 3 Mac's, and the drivers aren't really compatible. I ended up having to hack the driver. 

 

Anyone else?

 

I'd hate to admit it, but I'm looking at the Z906's from Logitech right now. I'm sure the clarity and reference from the GLA-55's currently setup (or even my Bowers MM1's or Clarity One's) will trump everything I find; however, I want to try out surround in my own room, not the living room where everyone can hear me,,

post #4 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by gradofan1 View Post
 

WOW THOSE ARE BEAUTIFUL. Can't find any really though through google except for from china though... which I'm not sure I trust despite better audio coming from China in the recent years (Little Dot, VSonic, etc.) 

 

Actually the company is from Taipei and California (not sure what goes on in which, but I think corporate HQ is in Taipei then RnD in CA). Production is in China to compete with all other mass-manufacturing companies - the few companies that don't have factories in China have a higher overhead due to larger workforce involved or charge a high premium for their "better crafted" products. Not everyone is like Schiit who skimped on the profit margins, going with a smaller staff (so they deal with employees as a small firm with none of the union BS that, like greedy CEOs, just wants to eat all the profit and you have to get creative with reinvestment, etc), finding a chassis and board manufacturer a stone's throw away from their own assembly plant...

post #5 of 16

8k system your Dad's? Is that why you keep saying you want a 5.1 for your own room? ;)

 

The Klipsch 5.1 is actually a pretty good sounding system for a bed room if you have a sound card which it seems you don't. You might want to look into getting a external sound card like one of the creative units, then plug all your speakers into it via 3.5mm plugs, or whatever and then USB to your laptop.

 

This would provide you the ability to use any pc type 5.1 system.

post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amish View Post
 

8k system your Dad's? Is that why you keep saying you want a 5.1 for your own room? ;)

 

 I think it's his and he just wants one in his bed room, that way if he's just gonna see a flick while on the bed(and possibly fall asleep halfway through it), he still gets 5.1.

post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 

Yeah, the Martin Logan Electrostat System is technically mine too, but my room is about 450 sq ft, so I have enough space to set one up. However, ideally it'd be limited to the 100 sq ft on my desk... Might try the Z906 just because its cheap for the hell of it.

post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by gradofan1 View Post

These would require a sound card too however, for the 6 inputs. I ran into the same problem with my Klipsch Promedia Ultra 5.1 because I run 3 Mac's, and the drivers aren't really compatible. I ended up having to hack the driver. 

Anyone else?

I'd hate to admit it, but I'm looking at the Z906's from Logitech right now. I'm sure the clarity and reference from the GLA-55's currently setup (or even my Bowers MM1's or Clarity One's) will trump everything I find; however, I want to try out surround in my own room, not the living room where everyone can hear me,,

Maybe it's time you graduated to an AVR and passive speakers wink.gif
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post


Maybe it's time you graduated to an AVR and passive speakers wink.gif

Uh if you read my first post -- I have an $8k-ish Martin Logan Electrostatic System set up stairs with a Yamaha AVR.. need something more compact in my own room, next to my computer and desk... currently using GLA-55's though ;D

post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by gradofan1 View Post

Uh if you read my first post -- I have an $8k-ish Martin Logan Electrostatic System set up stairs with a Yamaha AVR.. need something more compact in my own room, next to my computer and desk... currently using GLA-55's though ;D

I read your first post. Passive speakers don't need to be the size of your dad's Martin Logan Electrostatics. Passive speakers come in all shapes & sizes. An AVR gives you a way to hook up your MACs since I'm assuming they either have optical or HDMI out (HDMI would be better) without needing a sound card.
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 

Aren't most AVR's huge? It would take up all my desk space (I have a 27" Apple Thunderbolt Display and a pair of GLA-55's set up, and it fills the length of my desk, to give you a reference)...

post #12 of 16
Don't put the AVR on your desk. LOL
post #13 of 16

Yeah I agree with cel. I have in my office a HK3490 that my pc runs through to speakers. (PC also runs through my dac and headphone amp for when I use my cans.

 

I have the HK up on a shelf above my desk. Two bookshelf sized speakers on either side of my desk and a sub on the floor. works great. it is the best way to go if you can.

post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amish View Post
 

Yeah I agree with cel. I have in my office a HK3490 that my pc runs through to speakers. (PC also runs through my dac and headphone amp for when I use my cans.

 

I have the HK up on a shelf above my desk. Two bookshelf sized speakers on either side of my desk and a sub on the floor. works great. it is the best way to go if you can.

Well, if I have 2 bookshelf speakers, I'm doing what I am right now (the GLA-55).... it even has a subwoofer out line if I wanted to create a 2.1 system, but I find that the bass is adequate right now..

post #15 of 16

Since you're already an H/K user, have you looked into the Harman Kardon BDS 7772?

 

It's a pre-built 5.1 system, complete with a combined mini-receiver/blu-ray player that's quite small.  You'd connect your PC via HDMI.  I would imagine it's a big step up from a Logitech system.

 

If you want my honest advice, I'd drop the no receiver requirement and find some place to fit it in, no matter the compromise.  My main interest is in home theater, not headphones, and under no circumstances would I ever consider using a PC that didn't connect to an AVR via HDMI.

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