Upgrade from Soundsticks II
Sep 7, 2009 at 3:03 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 5

Lazerboy2000

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Now that I've moved into my Apt, i'm looking at hopefully upgrading my speakers from Harman/Kardon Soundsticks II. The thing is, I'm limited to space and although ideally I'd like to get A5's, they're rear ported and I don't have 6in of clearance. I'm thinking about getting the A2's, but am wondering if there are any better options around $250 or less.
I listen to a ton of Rock and jazz so they need to be "fun" and a decent amount of bass. I also suppose my main requirement is that they're front-ported since they will be close to the wall.

I'll try to post up a pic of my setup later as well as my maximum space allowance.
Thanks!
 
Sep 7, 2009 at 5:49 PM Post #2 of 5

DeusEx

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Soundsticks are hot little speakers..

A5s are nice speakers, when you don't compare them to "real" bookshelves from Energy, Paradigm, PSB, B&W, etc. If you want "fun", then other pro monitor brands might not have it for you, as they tend to sound more linear/flat than regular loudspeakers. The Audioengines are more "fun" speakers, per se.
 
Sep 7, 2009 at 6:00 PM Post #3 of 5

Lazerboy2000

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So I guess I should ask then how much better
are a2's compared to the soundsticks? Is it even worth the upgrade with such limited space or should I wait till I get more room and can fit something better?

How necessary is it really to get 6+inches of space behind rear potted speakers to allow them to breathe? I suppose I could put them a bit further from the wall but then they would be within arms length to me. Is that then too close for listening?
 
Sep 7, 2009 at 7:01 PM Post #4 of 5

Lazerboy2000

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Actually considering that I'm just using a PC with a crappy soundcard, would I benefit more from a decent DAC (gamma-1?) than upgrading the speakers? Should I worry more about the source than output?
 
Sep 7, 2009 at 7:20 PM Post #5 of 5

DeusEx

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I've never actually heard A2s, but have 2 friends who own them, and they're very impressed for the price. (as long as you don't push them too hard). I own Energy Reference.10 bookshelves, which are roughly worth over half a grand, not including amp (they're passive).

6+ inches is pretty important, as the closer they're placed toward the wall, the worse the bass will become. Then again, my Energys are much larger than A2s, with 5.25 woofers. If you really can't spare the space, then you can buy bass port plugs - I use them myself, since I have slightly less than 6 inches of room, since if I move them any farther out, the speakers will be too close to my listening position, and I'll lose the focus, soundstage, and imaging.

A decent DAC is also a must, and I'm considering myself to upgrade to either a Cambridge DACMagic or Compass. If your sound card's decent ($100 or more), then you don't have to upgrade just now, since the Audioengines aren't high-end, or even mid-end speakers. They're good, bang-for-the-buck little speakers. (well for $200, what can you expect? Sonus Faber Guarneri?)
 

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