Opinions wanted on a couple computer speaker systems
Apr 17, 2006 at 4:08 AM Post #46 of 56
I've used the M-Audio speakers, and find that they are great for production/music students. Good quality reproduction (ACCURATE!) for a low price. I've not heard the subwoofer, though, so don't assume that same review would be held for the system with the subwoofer.

dudley: Thanks for the defense. Sadly, it should be obvious to most, but I suppose people simply cannot admit when they've made a bad purchase sometimes.
Apr 17, 2006 at 10:01 PM Post #47 of 56
I get the impression that most 2.1 speaker systems that are made by like logitech, creative, or even altec lansing arent that great. How much better would these sound over the cheaper systems that i have mentioned earlier?



Which of those two would probably sounds better? Now i feel really stupid asking this question but im a complete newb when it comes to audio equipment but wut does an amp really do and is it really necessary to run either of those two bookshelf speakers? If an amp is required or they sound horrible without them what is a good cheap amp that wouldnt take up a lot of space because i have a small desk to put my computer monitor, possibly those two bookshelf speakers, and an amp?
Apr 18, 2006 at 7:34 AM Post #48 of 56
I have the Monsoon Planarmedia 14's. Though discontinued, they can be had for very cheap on eBay. I really like the sound of them. The bad thing about them is that the satelites do not reach down very far, so the subwoofer is crossed over at about 200hz. This make the subwoofer positional, and if the subwoofer is not placed near you, it'll sound odd. The sub puts out tight bass, not boomy like logitech's or Klipsch's, but because of that, to feel any tactile bass response the room has to be larger. In my bedroom, the sub is located under my desk (because it's positional), but the bass response in that location is less than ideal. It sounds incredible when i'm near a wall in my room, but where i sit at my computer, the bass doesn't extend well. This isn't too much of a problem for music, but for movies the Planarmedia 14's arn't too great. Also, you NEED small speaker stands for these because the satelites are very positional (due to using a planar speaker instead of a regular cone). That makes them less than ideal for movies, if you sit farther away, you lose detail.

To sum it up, when using these for music, and sitting at a desk they are awesome. For movies, and not sitting close to the desk, they arn't too hot.
Apr 18, 2006 at 8:18 AM Post #49 of 56
I'm using studio monitors instead multimedia speakers. I have the roland dm-10's. They are especially good on human voices. Interestingly at higher volumes they sound better. With this 2.0 setup you don't need an amplifier. They are like multimedia speakers and have a build in amplifier. You just connect them directly to any audio source whether it might be your sound card, mp3 player, cd player or anything else. The good thing is that they have coaxial and optical inputs. This could be very handy since you don't need to buy a DAC to do the converting from digital to analog outside the computer case. Chaintech AV710 would be a good sound card to consider with digital output.
  1. Stereo micro monitors with 24-bit/96kHz digital inputs (coaxial and optical)
  2. Powered 2-way bass reflex enclosure with 10 watts of power per side
  3. Magnetically shielded black wooden cabinet
  4. Controls located on front of speaker for easy adjustment
  5. Choice of digital or analog (stereo miniature and RCA) inputs

I can't complain with them since I bought them new for only £69. In the US you can find them for 145$. There is also a 2.1 version which is more than double the price.

Apr 19, 2006 at 11:19 PM Post #50 of 56
Hey mgtitans17,

you don't need a massive amp to power bookshelf speakers, even with an 8 ohm impedence. A cheap T-amp should do the job. The Tripath TIO card I use is basically a T-amp type chip on a PCI card. I don't know if these are still available or where to get them, but they shouldn't be that expensive. A relative of mine hooked me up with the Tripath TIO card, just in case everyone is wondering why I'm clueless about my own amp
. I agree with Aman that a pair of bookshelfs or monitors will be better than the multimedia speaker offerings (M200's the exception). Sorry If I sound biased, but logitechs just plain suck. I've listened to many of their systems so I can say this
Apr 20, 2006 at 3:32 AM Post #51 of 56
Dudley, I really appreciate the care and politeness that went into your post. Having heard the DV62si personally, I really don't think, IMHO, that you'll be affecting any significant improvement over a really good (but still cheaper) multimedia system (nice choice in amps though). Like I said before, my own preferences go toward the latter as against a lot (but certainly not all) of the budget stereo equipment out there. Still, I respect your opinion as it stands.

Apr 20, 2006 at 8:32 AM Post #52 of 56

Originally Posted by dudlew
I am being a devils advocate here



All under $300, and from all that is spoken should demolish the sound quality of most, if not all computer speakers.

Now for under $200



So the theory that you need soo much more money to better the computer speakers has been politely challenged...

Those look like very good cheap set-ups.
I have some Altec Lansing 621 powered speakers that I still listen to sometimes:

The sound is very good for powered speakers and price was unbeatable at the time. Less than 100 EUR if I recall. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like they are available anymore.

Edit: To correct myself, I'm not sure if powered speakers is the correct term for these. The subwoofer has a built in amp that powers the satellites too. Anyway, you can see what they are, multimedia/computer speakers or whatever.
Apr 20, 2006 at 11:30 PM Post #53 of 56
Now i really want to get a good pair of bookshef speakers and im looking at the paradigm atoms and the athena as-b1.2 because they get rave reviews and seem small enough for my small desktop. Now im still very confused about an amp. This amp seems to be the best amp to use for the price and is strong enough to drive the atoms and the athena's im guessing. Where can i purchase the ac adapter for the t-amp? Will this amp be strong enough to drive the athena speakers?


Now how would i connect the amp to the speakers and then to my computer? I dont think my fairly new dell computer has a soundcard either unless it came with one.

Does anybody know of any good reliable US retailers that sell the atoms for a good price because i know audioadvisor.com sells the athena speakers for a good price?

How do the athena as-b1.2 and the paradigm atoms compare sound wise?

Any other suggestions on smaller speakrers that i can use with the t-amp would be apprecieated. I just want to say im sorry for such newby questions but im new to audio equipment. The only thing i know about how good speakers sound is that my dad has a pair of vintage advent speakers and a pair of vintage bose speakers that both sound very nice.
Apr 21, 2006 at 7:29 PM Post #55 of 56
How do the Athena AS-B1.2 compare to the atoms sound wise? The athenas are a lot cheaper and they seem to be more readily available. Would the $30 t-amp be able to drive the athena speakers?
Apr 24, 2006 at 9:30 AM Post #56 of 56
I've gone through several speakers over the past year in the price range of the Paradigm Atom and somewhat higher, all driven by the lowly T-amp. The list includes the Paradigm Titan, Visaton B200 (DIY kept it cheap), Triangle Titus 202, Cambridge Soundworks MC200, etc. I've also driven these speakers by various mid-fi receivers from Onkyo, Sherwood, Pioneer, and can say without hesitation that my original PC speaker solution, the T-amp + Atoms, is a hard combo to beat.

The Atom is not the most revealing speaker, but driven by the T-amp, it doesn't strike you as veiled either. It is very smooth and has a nice midrange to it. The B200 (used in the $1,200 Omega B200) and the Titus 202 present significantly more detail, but they don't sound (to me) as great on some kinds of music. Those speakers do sound nice on small ensemble jazz, vocal jazz, etc.

The Atom sounds VERY acceptable playing all types of music, and even moreso when driven by the T-amp. The Paradigm Titan suffers from a slightly boomy sound, probably due to the larger cabinet and woofer. If I had only around $200 to spend on PC audio and wanted a stereo rig, I wouldn't hesitate to go with the Atom + T-amp. If you have another $100, Yamaha sells a cute little 8" powered sub, the YST-SW215, that seems to play beyond its price range too. I recently bought two to go next to my 42" Sony Grand WEGA--perfect for a smaller room.


P.S. I'm not around here much lately--PM or email me if you'd like to discuss.

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