Altec Lansing MX6021 2.1 Expressionist Ultra Speaker System (Black)

Average User Rating:
3/5,
  1. grant538
    3.0/5,
    "Altec Lansing Expressionist Ultra Brief Review"
    Pros - Great tweeters, powerful bass, decent design
    Cons - Constant hiss, awkward controls, muddy bass.
    This 2.1 system performs as I expected a system at this price point would in terms of audio quality. 2.1 computer systems tend to be marketed towards gaming, such that an immersive experience with visceral bass is what they're designed for, and this system delivers on those counts. Additionally, the tweeters provide a surprising amount of detail in the high frequencies, so much so that I can imagine some users might find it a bit harsh (although I just kind of learned to appreciate the detail). One downside is that with such bass power the detail in the bass is really lacking. Bass notes are loud and full, but the sub lacks tightness, so you get a good rumble, but these aren't great for fast paced jazz bass or something like that.
     
    The system does fall short in two areas in my opinion. First, the volume/treble/bass controller is really awkward in its design. You have to spin in to engage the up/down controls, but it can be hard to judge how much you need to spin it, so sometimes you'll find yourself with the volume or treble or bass fluctuating like crazy if you've applied too much force in your spin. Second, THERE IS A CONSTANT HISS in the system independent of volume (even when the volume is all the way down the hiss is still there). If these speakers are on, there is always a low-level hiss. I've checked into all sorts of potential interference issues, and no dice, there is definitely just a hiss from the amp or something. I've also read that this problem is consistent between buyers. Once music gets playing you can't really detect the hiss any more, but with low volume music it can be frustrating.
     
    Design is hit and miss depending on who you ask, but that can be judged from the pictures.