First set of bookshelf speakers
Jun 16, 2012 at 12:55 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 8

djsilver

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I have tried to do my research and look at other posts in this forum so as not to burden you all with another thread about what speakers to buy, but I would still like your opinions before I purchase anything. So here is what I'm looking at:
 
Budget: ~$200 for speakers
Possibly a T-amp for unpowered speakers (LP-2020A+ maybe?)
 
I have a PSW505 subwoofer, so I am not concerned that the bookshelf speakers have much bass. I am looking to upgrade my mids/highs (I have a Logitech z-640 5.1 surround system that is going on 12 years old). These are the 4 sets of speakers that I am looking at buying, but I'm certainly open to something else that's around the $200 mark:
 
M-Audio BX5 D2
Polk Audio TSi100
Audioengine A2
Cambridge S30-N
 
Other useful information: These will be used for my desktop computer, so I'll generally be about 3ft away from them. I listen to dubstep, and classical music mostly (instrumentals allow me to work better because lyrics are distracting). Accurate production is best, but I will occasionally want to use them for parties, so power is good too (which makes me a bit concerned about the Audioengine A2's because some reviews mentioned a poor quality power supply).
 
Any thoughts? 
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Jun 16, 2012 at 1:56 PM Post #3 of 8

deathzero34

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well the A2 are definitely to small if you intend to use them for parties and them might get overwhelm by your subwoofer.
 
Does 200$ also include the amp or do you have different budget for said amp?
 
All of the speakers you mentioned are rear ported. Do you have the room behind them to give them adequate space?
(and last question)
you intend to use those speakers for parties, will you use the same source (your computer) or something else?
 
off the bat, people say the bx5 d2 have good high and mid and what ppl usually find lacking is the bass. Seeing has you already have a sub, that could be a good pairing. (to be noted : the bx5 d2 doesn't have protective cover)
 
Jun 16, 2012 at 5:55 PM Post #4 of 8

djsilver

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Ah, good to know about the A2's, thanks.
 
No, I'm willing to spend up to another $200 for the amp. I'd prefer to aim for a T-amp though (I'm trying to piece-meal a system together by spending less than $250 a year). But if it's really worth it to get a different amp then it's not out of the question. I had the Behringer A500 Reference Amplifier recommended to me before, but if I were to get it, then I would wait for it to drop down to $200 again. I also have the possibility of using an old amp from my parents place, but I forgot to check it out when I was home for a week.
 
Speaker placement is not an issue, but how much room behind such speakers do you recommend? For parties I'd probably use my computer, but I don't mind doing some rewiring the day before the party (after all, I'm moving my sub into the common room for a party tonight). That's nice to know about the BX5 D2's. I was already thinking that they looked like the best option of those 4 sets.
 
Jun 16, 2012 at 6:33 PM Post #5 of 8

deathzero34

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(just answering your question while I still poke around)
 
Usually between 12inch and 10 inch. (for a speaker that size) If the speaker doesn't have enough room behind the bass will sound boomy because the cone cannot move like its suppose to.
 
You technically wouldn't need an amp for the bx5 d2 because they are active speaker. They have their own PSU inside the speaker.
 
Jun 16, 2012 at 7:29 PM Post #6 of 8

djsilver

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Gotcha, that makes sense. I figured it was distortion from preventing air flow.
 
And I knew that I don't need an amp for the bx5 d2 speakers since they are active, but I just mentioned the T-amp in case someone suggested an unpowered set that they would know I wasn't looking to buy a expensive/powerful amp.
 
I wish there was a decent shop I could go to and test out some higher end speakers... I have gone to some stores like Best Buy and Walmart, but they don't have higher end sets, and the environment isn't very realistic. Does anyone know of a decent shop to go to in Virginia or North Carolina (USA)? I saw suggestions in another thread to go to a pawn shop or thrift store and see what they have, but that was for DACs, not speakers. I might try my luck just to see what's around though. It's unlikely that I will buy anything used though. I take excellent care of my stuff so it lasts a long time (current speakers going on 12 years, and I move at least every 4 months for work/school/home). So it's worth the extra bit of investment to buy something new since I plan on it lasting a very long time!
 
Jun 17, 2012 at 4:59 PM Post #7 of 8

deathzero34

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I know bestbuy in canada hold the b5x d2 and they have a 7days return policy. You could have the very least try them and return them if they don't fit what you want. Same thing with amazon. (but with amazon you might have to pay shipping back)
 
Jun 30, 2012 at 2:03 PM Post #8 of 8

djsilver

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I bought the b5x d2's and I've used them for a couple of days, and I'm quite happy. They undoubtedly add definition to the mids/highs and my sub takes care of the bass, so they make a good match. For the first day I did not like them because they seemed so sharp compared to what I was used to, but I gave myself time to adjust and now I can fully appreciate how they bring out tones that I missed before.
 
I will note that during gaming, and some songs/movies I miss the surround sound from my 5.1 system so I am using both through a splitter cable. Combined together they 'fill' my space quite well. I'm almost thinking about buying another pair in the future to run as the back pair so I can have surround sound and full quality... The b5x d2's do pick up compression artifacts in some of my lower quality mp3 files, but not to the point that I find it annoying, and I would rather err on the side of being too precise than knowing the speakers are rolling-off the highs so I can hardly hear certain tones.
 
Songs that are slow and soft are the best for discovering new aspects of music I have heard before. For example, I can easily tell a difference between my old speakers and the b5x d2's when I play "kahvi276b_mikael_fyrek-is_past_but_a_fleeting_moment" (download the .ogg version).
 
Thank you deathzero34 and trog for your thoughts about what speakers to get :)
 

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