Bookshelf speakers
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Max598

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I have been look at speakers for my room because while I love my headphones, I sometimes would like to be able to walk around, do stuff, etc, while listening to music. 
 
I have been looking at some klipsch bookshelf speakers for a while and I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions as to if they are any good or alternative's I could get.
 
No real budget right now because I am in no hurry to get them but I would like them to be around the price of the klipschs which are about 250 I think, I can go higher for some real sexy sounding ones:wink:
 
I  listen to a little bit of everything but mostly rock.
 
I was also wondering if and how bookshelf speakers would connect to my laptop, or do I need an alternative source? And is there anyway my usb dac and littledot mk3 amp could be used witht the speakers?
 
Thanks for the help in advance!
 
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ecclesand

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I had a set of the Klipsch RB-25 bookshelves and they sounded very good.  I ultimately sold them in favor of bookshelves with a bit better bottom end.  I don't think the LDIII has the stones to drive speakers, but I could be wrong.  You would be better off with picking up a used older receiver or you could even go with a T-Amp as the Klipsch speakers are very efficient.  Your chain would be laptop optical out to usb dac to receiver or T-amp to speakers.
 
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Max598

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Thanks for the in depth reply! I see what you're saying. Is a receiver or t amp required to drive the speakers? I can't just hook them up to my MacBook pro right? And I guess my littledot can be used as a preamp? I'm not so sure as to what that is or does.
 
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sml1226

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I had a set of the Klipsch RB-25 bookshelves and they sounded very good.  I ultimately sold them in favor of bookshelves with a bit better bottom end.  I don't think the LDIII has the stones to drive speakers, but I could be wrong.  You would be better off with picking up a used older receiver or you could even go with a T-Amp as the Klipsch speakers are very efficient.  Your chain would be laptop optical out to usb dac to receiver or T-amp to speakers.

If it's a USB DAC, why use the optical (and I assume convert optical to USB)? Why not use a USB connection?
 
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Max598

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I didnt catch the optical out part, but that doesnt matter anyway because my dac is only able to connect via usb. Anyone have insight to my previous questions? suggestions on gear? Any help is appreciated:)
 
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randerson07

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I have a set of Klipsch RB-51's hooked up to a receiver I pulled out of the trash, heres a pic http://images.craigslist.org/3k33od3l55V65T45Z2b6a05d502d6a905178b.jpg  I dont know any specs on it. It does not have Optical in, so I use a 3.5 to RCA going from my Mac Mini. Its certainly not the clearest sound, if there is any movement in the cable you can hear it. Ill replace this receiver one day, but until then it does an ok job, it drives the only set of headphones I have pretty well, ATH M35s.
 
I did at one point have the Mac hooked up to my Yamaha htr-5760 via optical, which is line out on the mac, i used it for netflix and hulu when I canceled my cable, It sounded really good. I would still have that hooked up if the mac handled video better.
 
 
 
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sml1226

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I'd say use your DAC (it does have RCA outs right?) to a receiver or integrated amp (just about anything will work with Klipsch). That way you can use it for more than just the macbook, and it will probably work better than your average Class T amp.

Check out your local craigslist for cheap receivers. It shouldn't be that hard in California.
 
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Max598

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Yeah my dac has RCA outs.  I think thats a great idea I will be searching for a reciever then. Does the quality receiver matter a whole lot? And if so what is a good receiver? 
 
I was also wondering if anyone have tried the audioengine a5s?  They seem to get great reviews and from what ive read they dont need a receiver or amp.
 
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ecclesand

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Ooops...my bad.  You're correct, use the USB out from your laptop.  I picked up a nice NAD Receiver (7140) from Ebay for a bit over $100 shipped and it has served me very well.  You may want to check out the AudioKarma forums for some receiver suggestions.
 
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Roseval

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Quote:
I was also wondering if anyone have tried the audioengine a5s?  They seem to get great reviews and from what ive read they dont need a receiver or amp.


 
[size=10pt]It are powered speakers so the amp is built into one of the boxes.[/size]
[size=10pt]Saves you an expensive aluminum enclosure…[/size]
[size=10pt]Type audioengine a5 in the search box above and you probably get some hits…[/size]
 
 
 
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Max598

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All very good suggestions. I was wondering if anyone knows how the audioengine a5s would compare to some bookshelfs with a receiver soundwise. I was thinking about klipsch rb41 or rb51s.
 
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ounwx

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For computer audio, I've been using a pair of Klipsch B2's for about six months now. For the price I got them at ($100), I couldn't be any happier. I seriously don't feel the slightest need to upgrade these anytime in the foreseeable future. I listen to music (mainly rock) almost exclusively, so was not particularly concerned about multi-channel or a subwoofer.
 
When I was at the store where I bought them, I had the chance to audition Klipsch RB-51's as well. Without a doubt, they were noticeably superior to the B2's, with better clarity packed into a smaller footprint. I would have sprung for them had they both been at stock price ($350 for the RB-51's; $200 or $250 for the B2's), but the B2's were on clearance and it was too good a deal to pass up on my student budget. If you listen to rock and prefer forward sound with strong treble, I can virtually guarantee you happiness in the RB-51's.
 
FWIW, I had been using M-Audio AV-30's for a year or so before this Klipsch set, and was fairly unsatisfied with their output. They were far too "boxy" sounding and veiled to my ears, and virtually incapable of "rocking out," so to speak. I know you asked for a comparison to A5's, which may sound completely different, but I figured I'd throw in what I know about the issue of Klipsch bookshelf vs. cheap powered monitors.
 
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About a month ago, I decided to go all out and buy a pair of Klipsch RB-61 bookshelves for my computer desktop. I hooked these up and powered them through an AirPort express and Yamaha RX-V795 receiver. They sounded great, the sound stage and musical separation was incredible, but higher notes from the horns were way too much to handle sitting 3 feet away from them, even at moderate volume. I was hoping to buy a tube amplifier to soften the highs, unfortunately I wasn't able to get hold of one. As a result, I returned these speakers after a week. Perhaps giving them more time to burn in may have changed things.
 
I later auditioned a pair of Rokit RP5 G2 monitors at my local Tom Lee store. The highs were much smoother and bearable and they sound great compared to a number of other monitors in the store. I later purchased these and I've been enjoying them for about 2 weeks now, real nice sounding speakers. I was able to grab these for $346 a pair. If you live in the states, you can probably get them cheaper at around $300 or so. Compared to the Klipsch, they sound much more controlled (not sure if that's the word), when certain passages kick in, they really "kick in", I'm not sure if if this is described as "attack" but whatever it is, passages and sounds "kick in" with more authority than on the Klipsch. With the Klipsch, you can hear everything, everything is clear as it is loud and is all happening at once. Choruses and good parts don't really "kick in", it just sounds like they are kicking all the time. My apologies if my description doesn't make any sense.
 
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ounwx

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Funny how differently each of us hears things! To me, the horns on Klipsch speakers don't sound harsh or difficult to listen to at all. Instead, they sound perfect, removing what I perceive to be a couple big, fat stuffed pillows between me and the speaker when listening to studio monitors that have rolled off, "smooth" treble. Yuck.
 
This just illustrates how important it is for the OP to audition different brands himself before buying, if at all possible. You don't necessarily have to try out every single model, but just listening to some Klipsch models vs. more conservative, flat-response brands like KRK should give you some direction.
 
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