AHH! I'm being sucked in by the speaker system!
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HD-5000

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The obsession began with the harmless question from my father, "Where are the speakers for the CD player we bought you?"

How does this system sound for a bedroom? My source will be the Denon DCM-370
I need:
PSB Alpha B on Sanus Basic Foundations III 24" stand
NAD C320 integrated amp
Outlaw interconnects
Kimber Kable 4PR 6' speaker cable

I know that this isn't the ultimate in sound quality, but I need something that will fit my budget which is about $700 absolute max. Any suggestions?

Also remember that I will always be a headphoner at heart. How can I leave headphones or even (shudder) sell my HD-580s? I love you guys!
 
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post-196982
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MacDEF

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Quote:

Originally posted by HD-5000
I need:
PSB Alpha B


HD, I'm selling some Alpha Minis in the FS forum for $100


Shameless plug out of the way, I think your proposed system will be more than adequate. Just remember that even though it's a "budget" system, it will sound better than 95% of the stereos in the world
 
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post-196992
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Nick Dangerous

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bootman

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Quote:

Originally posted by MacDEF
HD, I'm selling some Alpha Minis in the FS forum for $100


Shameless plug out of the way, I think your proposed system will be more than adequate. Just remember that even though it's a "budget" system, it will sound better than 95% of the stereos in the world


<Sirens blaring>
Warning-Ad alert, Ad alert!!!




[size=xx-small]sorry for busting your chops, but I couldn't resist![/size]
 
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post-197035
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andrzejpw

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Wow, very nice system! And I'm sure you'd be very happy with macdef's speakers.
 
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post-197049
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HD-5000

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One small question, how far apart should small bookshelf speakers be placed apart from each other and how far from the back wall and side walls?
 
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post-197090
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Nick Dangerous

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DISTANCE

1. Set your speakers against the wall and turn them inward so that the drivers point directly at your ears. Tweeters should be in the same horizontal plane as your eardrum. Adjust your stand to achieve the proper height.

2. Have a listen.

3. Move them towards your listening position by a foot.

4. Have a listen. Notice anything different?

5. Try moving them another foot towards you. Still different? Adjust in smaller steps until the front/back arrangement sounds best.

SOUNDSTAGE

6. Next we will play with the horizontal distance. The ideal angle usually lies between 60 and 72 degrees as measured from your listening position. Measure it out if you want, or better yet just play it by ear. The wider the distance, the bigger the soundstage. If they get too far apart, the soundstage will become too thin and hollow-sounding. Move them closer or farther apart until the widest possible soundstage is achieved without compromise.

BALANCE

7. Set your amp/preamp balance (if you have one) to center. Sit in your listening position. Is the image balanced in the center of both speakers, or does it hang slightly to the left or right? If it isn't centered, move the offending speaker back an inch or two until the image is properly centered.

FOCUS

8. Having a friend help with this task makes it a lot easier. Sit in your listening position and play some music. Up to now, the drivers have been pointing directly at your ears. Have a friend slowly turn one speaker as you continue to listen. There will be a point where the transients have the greatest *snap* and clarity... so have your friend STOP when you are "in the zone". Do the same for the other speaker.

Voila! 3x better speakers for free!

Speaker placement set me back a whole week. Lowther speakers are notoriously fussy. They ended up practically in the middle of the room, about six feet apart (near the 72 degree mark). Rather than pointing directly towards my ears, the drivers were rotated until they converged at a point about three feet behind my head.
 
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Wodgy

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I really don't recommend Kimber 4-series speaker cable with the PSB Alpha B's. I've tried this combo; it sounds terrible (I was using Kimber 4VS, not 4PR, but I doubt there's a major difference). The PSB Alpha B's are naturally on the brighter side of neutral, and Kimber 4-series has lean bass and a very forward midrange. The combo is bad.

I much prefer Radio Shack 12-gauge Megacable (the stuff that's on Stereophile's latest Recommended Components list) with the PSB Alpha B's. It's also cheaper.

Your CD player will probably be a good match with the PSB Alpha Bs.

Also, you didn't mention a subwoofer. You probably won't be satisfied with the performance of the Alpha Bs for music if you don't use them with a subwoofer; their bass extension is only to about 70 Hz, and this is exaggerated by the speakers' somewhat forward highs and upper midrange. Consider the PSB Image 2Bs if you're not planning on using a subwoofer. They can be had for only a little more money, and they have much more satisfying bass. I can't emphasize this enough. You won't like the Alpha Bs on their own.
 
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Wodgy

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Quote:

Originally posted by HD-5000
One small question, how far apart should small bookshelf speakers be placed apart from each other and how far from the back wall and side walls?


The PSB Alpha Bs are back ported, so it's especially important to keep them away from the walls by at least a foot. Also be careful of corners. If you need speakers that can be placed closer to the wall, you should go for sealed or front ported speakers.

I have a pair of Alpha B's, and they're somewhat more difficult to place than an average pair of speakers because of the back porting.
 
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BenG

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I would definately use a MEASURING TAPE when setting up your speakers. This helps to keep both speakers symmetrical to room boudaries, furniture and your listening position(s). I can tell when a single speaker is moved a 1/2". Room tunings like acoustic foam & a thick rug between the speakers (to stop 'first reflections'), really rigid speaker stands all add up to be more important than what speaker cables you're using (even though they are important too) in my experience. Also, you could use test tones to find resonances or standing waves - to proceed accordingly. All been similiarly said before.
 
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TimSchirmer

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Go for the PSBs... I'm using them myself, and they sound GREAT out of an old harman kardon reciever.
 
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pigmode

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Quote:

Originally posted by HD-5000
One small question, how far apart should small bookshelf speakers be placed apart from each other and how far from the back wall and side walls?


Concerning how far apart: You should have a clearly defined center image.

If you increase the distance too much, that image will blurr or disappear. A ballpark starting point might be with the speakers a bit closer than an equilateral triangle. If the speakers are moved too close, there may be a loss of depth.

Toe-in will be affected by the type of speaker, and the characteristics of its HF and midrange drivers--the manner in which they disperse the sound. Experiment.
 
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rajan

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There are some websites which recommend speaker placement. Try searching ecoustics. You can start here
 
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Ctn

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As for speaker cables, I recently found out that 20 amp solid core power cables make damn good speaker cables and is insanely cheap ! 50c a meter. Spend the rest on your main eq.

Too bad you are not in Oz, there's quite a few good speakers here at good prices.

I just had a hard time placing my twin sealed speakers. Put them as far away from the walls as possible esp the side walls.
 
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