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whats the best computer audio ($under 300)

Discussion in 'Computer Audio' started by imagital, Mar 17, 2008.
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  1. infinitesymphony
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by brown274 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    How about some AudioEngines.[​IMG]

    I have decided that I am going to get a receiver and some Aperion intimus 4B bookshelves. Since aperion has the 30 trial with free shipping both ways, hot diggy dog. How are you guys hooking up receiver to your PC.
    1. Receiver - RCA - 3.5 - soundcard
    2. Receiver -RCA - 3.5 - Amp DAC
    3. Something like this Xitel Precision Audio Technology
    What would give you the best sound




    Depends on the quality of the sound card versus the receiver's DAC section. I can give you a more definitive answer if you have specific sound cards or receivers in mind.
     
  2. classicalguy
    A few comments on the various posts.

    I have 4 t-amps, and they play through my bookshelves and one floorstander plenty loud without clipping. Maybe I don't play as loudly as some of you, or maybe I have more efficient speakers? They have cheap built quality, but they have been completely reliable in more than a year of constant use.

    I use the Xitel hifi link, and I think it's a piece of junk. Cheap low quality dac. It doesn't sound nearly as good as my maudio transit, and everything is upconverted to 48K. I would not recommend it. I'd like to replace it with an 0404 usb, but I have not been able to buy one at an appropriate price (like $125 shipped). So I'm still waiting.
     
  3. brown274
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by infinitesymphony /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    Depends on the quality of the sound card versus the receiver's DAC section. I can give you a more definitive answer if you have specific sound cards or receivers in mind.



    I have an old soundblaster. They should of named it soundblister.
    I'm thinking of getting a onkyo tx-8522 with 2 bookshelves. I will have it on my pc desk. I wonder if I should get an E-mu 0202 or 0404 to hook it to the cpu or get a wadia itransport and use my ipod insted. So many darn choices.
    I remember when the only choices were if you wanted to listen to side A or side B.
     
  4. Dobro
    I've got the original sonic T-amp driving a pair of Athena AS-B1 bookshelf speakers. They sound way better then any multimedia speakers I've ever heard. No you don't get the floor shaking boom boom, but if you must have a woofer you can try something like this:
    T-amp subwoofer connector

    Google "T amp sub-woofer" and you'll find other solutions.

    I will never go back to multimedia speakers.
    The important thing with the t-amps is tho get very efficient speakers, 90db or better. Then you get plenty of sound for a small room like a bedroom or a study.

    You can get the more current Athena AS-B2 speakers for about $150.
     
  5. imagital
    After all I've read here I am most intrigued by the Axiom Audiobyte set. I think I will pass on the T-amp option because it wont run a subwoofer. If anyone has something to say about the Axiom's and its EPzero subwoofer I would like to hear it. I think I can swing buying the speakers first, and then the subwoofer later... If appearances count for anything in a speaker system, the Axioms look pretty sweet...


    ---Ok I stand corrected, the T-amp can run a sub with the Subline connector...still, I like the Axioms. I'm not especially keen on the mad scientist approach since I don't really know what the heck Im doing...
     
  6. brown274
    I would get the axiom but I want a receiver and some aperions. Axioms look sweet and have a 30 day in home trial, so you cant go wrong! If I got the axioms I would have to buy a dac since my video card is junk.
     
  7. Jaw007
    If you like lots of bass go for logitech z-5500's
     
  8. donaldekelly Contributor
    A receiver and Axiom M3s if you have the room. Ebay for a decent receiver and axiom M3s or see Ascend speakers 2 cheaper models.
     
  9. Hookem
    If you are looking for a stereo only solution.

    AudioEngine 5's...You can find them for right at 310.00 dollars shipping included.

    If you buy them from AudioEngine they are 350.00 shipped...You can listen to them for 30 days and if you do not like them AudioEngine will refund your money less a shipping fee.

    Great guys to do business with...I bought a pair of AudioEngine 2's and they sounded very good...Way better to me than the Klipsch ProMedia's that I just bought and promptly sold...Called them and told them that I wanted to send them back and buy the AudioEngine 5's...Guy sent me RMA number right then and there...Told me they do refunds on Friday and that I would have my money back.

    Ordering the 5's from them instead of trying to find them for less money because of the customer service...Great company to do business with...Talked to a friend in San Diego who has a pair who has better ears than me and he seezzz they cant be beat with a bat in that price range.

    Google them and read the reviews...To say every single reviewer likes them would be an understatement with some of them extremely impressed.

    I find horn loaded tweeters way to bright for me...I have owned ProMedia 4.1's, 5.1's and several pairs of 2.1's...Just sold a pair...Listener fatigue set's in for me in about 20 minutes at a volume that I like...At low volumes I can go for about 2hrs. before I have to turn them off.

    I am in the process of upgrading the audio section of my computer and have decided that the AudioTrak Prodigy HD2 from floridaymusic and the AudioEngine 5's are a very good way to go in my humble opinion.

    Card and speakers can be had for 430.00 dollars shipping included...I have not found anything in that price range that I feel compares to this combination.

    Mackie is coming out with some MR5's that are much like the AudioEngine 5's for about 300.00 a pair that will be available in early to mid May.

    Could be another option if you are willing to wait...At least wait till some "real" reviews of them hit the net.

    But in your price range the AudioEngine 5's are my recommendation.
     
  10. jinp6301
    I was thinking of getting Audioengine 5s for a while but the M-Audio BX8A seemed to get better reviews.

    infinitesymphony, do you have any comparisons between those two?
     
  11. infinitesymphony
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jinp6301 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    I was thinking of getting Audioengine 5s for a while but the M-Audio BX8A seemed to get better reviews.

    infinitesymphony, do you have any comparisons between those two?




    No, I've never heard either speaker, and the Audioengine A5s aren't available for audition anywhere nearby, so I can only base my opinion on reviews and specs. The Audioengine A5s should be comparable to the M-Audio BX5a Deluxe speakers, and for the same price, take a look at the Mackie MR5 speakers. They're new for this year and reviews have been good. The Audioengines do look interesting; it's nice to see a toroid in monitors in this price segment, but they will be a bit more of a gamble than other options since they aren't widely available.

    If you can spend a bit more, look at the Mackie MR8, M-Audio BX8a Deluxe, and the Event Tuned Reference 8 (and 8 XL).
     
  12. goldnbearbuckeye
    I'm running my audio out of a laptop.

    EMU 0202
    M-Audio Studiophile DX-4s [running out of the 1/8" jack]
    Sony SA-WM250 Subwoofer [running out of the RCA jack]

    I believe the prices go as follow:

    EMU 0202 - ~100 on a sale - Read about these, very well respected. They sound good to me.

    DX-4 - ~140 on a sale - man these are so crystal clear. Highs and mids just amazing. But they were missing the oomph, so I bought...

    Woofer - Craigslisted it off some girl who was selling them for $50!! that was my steal. They don't really sell them anymore, and this thing is just incredible. Great quality, great power. 100 watts doesn't tell the story.

    There it is, under 300, amazing sound, amazing bass.
     
  13. triggerc
    Speaking of bookselves, how about those Insignia NS-B2111? Coupled with a T-amp and a Dayton 10" sub you have a pretty nice sounding system for $300.
     
  14. jinp6301
    thanks for your comments infinitesymphony! [​IMG]

    Do you know the difference between the deluxe and non-deluxe versions of the Bx8a?
     
  15. infinitesymphony
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by triggerc /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    Speaking of bookselves, how about those Insignia NS-B2111? Coupled with a T-amp and a Dayton 10" sub you have a pretty nice sounding system for $300.



    Since the T-Amp doesn't have a subwoofer preamp output, that setup would require Y-adapters to split the signal coming out of the source, and it would require the source to have variable volume output (otherwise, the subwoofer's volume would need separate adjustment every time). Plus, both the Insignias and the T-Amp have risen in cost since that setup was first recommended. Most people have already upgraded from that setup, since it's not so great.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jinp6301 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    Do you know the difference between the deluxe and non-deluxe versions of the Bx8a?



    Given that the Deluxe models have the same retail price as the old ones, they're probably just an external styling update, possibly with some minor internal revisions. All of the specs are the same, so there shouldn't be much (if any) difference.
     
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