High-end speakers?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by sAmBaL BeLaCaN, Apr 21, 2005.

  1. sAmBaL BeLaCaN macrumors member

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    #1
    Hi guys..

    I'm interested buying a high-end multimedia speakers for my eMac,and I have come up with this 3 finalist to decide:: what do you say about their products?

    1. Harman Kardon Soundstick II
    2. Klipsch GMX-A 2.1
    3. Bose Companion 3
     
  2. James Philp macrumors 65816

    James Philp

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    #2
    You would not consider an amp/speaker setup?
    Roksan Kandy MkIII/Quad 11L?
    This is my definition of high-end!
    Bot of the 3 i only know the soundsticks
     
  3. 840quadra Moderator

    840quadra

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    #3
    to audiophiles your selections would not be considered high end. I am not trying to disrespect you, but I know someone may get nasty with opinions.

    I would personally go with the Klipsch speaker setup. They provide exceptional sound, and have a good warm tone to them. The Bose setup is mostly a name, and cannot be compared with their true high end equipment.

    The reason i liked the Klipsch system (I bought them for my Girl Friend) was 1) the price was lower then some real poor sounding speaker sets 2) the sound was dynamic and not too Boomy with the Bass set at a reasonable level 3) the design is simple, and can blend into almost any room decor.

    Try not to get caught up with RMS output, or subwoofer size, listen to the audio quality, an if you can bring in an iPod or CD player and compare the same tracks on multiple sets of speakers. Find out what sounds best to you before you spend the money :)
     
  4. James Philp macrumors 65816

    James Philp

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    #4
    The hifi setup i suggested costs around £1000 ($1900) with cables etc.
    I consider it to be a mid-to-low end Hifi system. (you think i don't know about ATC Active 20s or B&W Signature 805's or the T&A V10 (valve) amp!?)
    Of course there are more high-end Hifi Systems, but this would be the upper limit for me for a mainly computer-driven system!
    I wouldn;t expect someone to spend £12000 on speakers if their CD player did not cost at least that much!
     
  5. feakbeak macrumors 6502a

    feakbeak

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    #5
    This is great advice, I couldn't agree more.

    Why is that in every speaker thread when a member asks for advice and is obviously looking at consumer-level speakers some audiophile has to come in and recommend something around $1000 - that's not reasonable and it almost strikes me as rude and condescending.

    I have two multimedia speaker systems for my two computers. I have had Acoustic Energy's Aego2 2.1 system for several years now and it is really good. It was a bit pricey - cost me $400. When I got a second computer I needed another speaker system but was not willing to spend more than $200. I went to all the Best Buy's, Circuit City's, CompUSA's etc... I listened to every system they had on display some costing as much as $500. My verdict was that they all either sucked, or cost way too much for what they delivered. It is unfortunate, but the best value on audio is often in the smaller, lesser known companies. This makes it difficult for the average buyer as the good "bang for your buck" products are not readily available to you.

    I finally decided on getting the Swans M200s through newegg.com. This is a 2.0 speaker system, no sub, but the bass is good for monitors. It's not terribly deep, but it goes lower than you'd expect and more importantly it's tight and accurate bass. Swans is true high-end speaker company - these are one of their cheapest pairs of speakers. They were highly regarded by reviewers and owners, so I went with them. I've been very pleased with my purchase. They were less than half the price of my Aego2 system and they sound better, IMO. They are currently going for $170 on newegg. I would consider them as long as you aren't a base freak and aren't worried about the look of more traditional sized speakers sitting on your desk. You'd be hard pressed to find better sound for the money though.

    The difficult part is that with these lesser known companies it is rare to find them in a store where you can listen to them so you have to base your decision more on reviews and user opinions. Good luck!

    EDIT: Picture in case you are curious:

    [​IMG]

    newegg.com - Swans M200 Read the user reviews! I should post mine there and add to it.
     
  6. Poeben macrumors 6502

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    Jul 29, 2004
    #6
    A bit off topic, but we recently had one of the designers of the Bang & Oleufsen BeoLab5 speakers give a lecture and demonstration. I must say, I was blown away. Granted they are $8500 per speaker, but by far the most advanced speaker I have ever seen or heard, including the $9000/ea Genelecs in our control room. They even automatically calibrate themselves to the room using a built in, retractable microphone. Its amazing when you hear things in a recording you have never heard before.
     
  7. Toreador93 macrumors regular

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    Sep 14, 2003
    #7
    I've been doing some speaker research lately, and I'll agree with feakbeak that the Swans seem to be the best for the price. You can take a look at THIS review for more info. Swans is coming out with an S200 that may replace the M200, but it'll probably be around $250 when it comes out. I really don't know if you can add a subwoofer to the system. My PC audio has 5.1 inputs, so I think I would be able to add a stand-alone sub. Swans does have 2.1 speakers, but I really don't know where you could find them.

    I would stay away from Bose. I've heard they are not worth the money, and sound tinny. I don't like the Klipsch because the cable is hard-wired to the speaker - my current Altec Lansings are, and they've limited my set-up a bit. Otherwise, Klipsch would be my second choice.
     
  8. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

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    #8
    why not try a pair of the new serie genelecs? 8030's being the smallest of them, still able to make quite a big sound.
     
  9. wPod macrumors 68000

    wPod

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    #9
    of the three, i would say Klipsch would be the best. and the closest to 'high end' of your selection. i have listened to all three as i am looking to purchase speakers myself. and i would say klipsch sounded the best with bose as a close second (from your selection). i would have to say DO NOT GET the soundstick II . . . the sound quality is pretty poor and the price is way to high for the quality. you are only paying for the looks. as for my own search i realized i wanted a quality pair of speakers (or more preferably an amp/speaker set up) but dont have the money right now. when its cheaper for me to buy a mac mini than speakers, i think id rather get a mini! heh
     
  10. Jigglelicious macrumors 6502

    Jigglelicious

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    #10
    Another vote for either the Swan M200's, or the Klipsch Promedia 2.1's (NOT the Klipsch GMX series!)
     
  11. eva01 macrumors 601

    eva01

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    #11
    Personally my soundsystem for my comptuer is my home entertainment center (and i believe that is always better than computer speakers personally) so i would go with making one of those

    mine is good but i need to upgrade

    700 watt 6.1 Yamaha reciever
    150 watt yamaha subwoofer
    2 Bose center speakers
    4 Bose 151(I think?) speakers

    (currently trying to upgrade everything and get at least the 301 series for the A+B and Rear, since i can't afford the 9 series, and at least a 500 watt subwoofer and a 9.1 reciever)

    thats my thoughts on it thou :/ not that anyone cares :p i have spent about 700-1000 on the sound setup thus far
     
  12. AstroManLuca macrumors member

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    Mar 18, 2005
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    Minnesota
    #12
    And ANOTHER vote for the plain, older Klipsch ProMedias. Not the GMX-A, which are pretty cruddy for the price. The SoundSticks are even worse, and Bose is extremely overrated.

    Klipsch. Or Logitech Z-2300s.
     
  13. panphage macrumors 6502

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    Jul 1, 2003
    #13
    Ok. they're not on your list, but as feakbeak said, the Swans. I've got a pair and they're amazing. I like them a LOT better than any other "multimedia" system I've tried, including your entire list. I see lots of comments about the bass lacking, but mine have plenty o bass for me.

    I generally listen to electronic music, jazz, classical (orchestra and chamber), rap, and the occassional oddity (noise, industrial, triphop, and whatever the Legendary Pink Dots are...) but I don't tend to watch action movies on my computer. So maybe explosions would show up where everyone is talking about the bass?
     
  14. rogerw macrumors 6502

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  15. sAmBaL BeLaCaN thread starter macrumors member

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    #15
    another thing...

    Thanx guys for ur various suggestions,

    I wonder what makes their speaker so unique?

    Based on suggestions what makes Pro Media series 'better than GMX series?

    If I go for 5.1 (surround vs. stereo?) ,do i still be able to listen music audio rather than movies?

    If I go for 5.1 ,do they have those Dolby Digital or DTS enhancer like Yamaha TSS-1A ,Logitech Z5500 or Logitech Z680 , or do I just need to use my M-Audio Sonica?

    Currently,

    I have a USB M-Audio Sonica Theatre 7.1 and as well I have Zalman Theatre-6 headphone. Not forgetting I have another set of Sennheiser HD212Pro headphone and iPod 30 GB 3rd gen.

    Zalman didn't work well when it plays most of DVD movies. I can hear the discreting surround of the gun shots ,but it lacks certain amount of frequency. And looking at the USB sound card of M-Audio, they only give limited number of volume level ,as in contrast ,when I just plug my Sennheiser into the the eMac, then I realized that the sound are more 'booming'.

    I'm staying in a apartment shares with the other 4 mates, which my bedroom probably smaller and the purpose of the speaker would mostly probably goes for movies. Although, I listened music pretty much, but I prefer Trance, Dance, Hip-Hop, Alternative during the daywork. And during the night time, I would probably use'em for Pop, Slow, Chill, Score, Classical, and Jazzi.Some other time, I would probably want to use this type of speaker & plug'em into my iPod dock connector for relaxing.

    I think thats all for now, and Cheerz for your helps...!
     
  16. 840quadra Moderator

    840quadra

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    #16
    No problem!

    Happy shopping and welcome to Macrumors!! :)
     
  17. Platform macrumors 68030

    Platform

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    #17
    Well as said, if you want high end then go for reciver and speakers.

    How about:

    Harman/Kardon AVR 8500 reciver

    B&W Natilus 801 speakers

    Edit: just had to say :p
     

    Attached Files:

  18. homerjward macrumors 68030

    homerjward

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    #18
    WTF! what are all those plugs for on the back of that receiver :eek: there's like 80 million of 'em!!!!
     
  19. feakbeak macrumors 6502a

    feakbeak

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    #19
    LOL The B&W 801's are some power-hungry speakers. You're going to power them with the AVR 8500's 100 watts/channel?

    I knew someone driving the 801's with the Bryston 7B monoblocks. (500 W/ch @ 8 ohms) and they would have still taken more power. Sure, they are rated for 50-1000W but if I was spending $11,000 on a pair of speakers, I would power it with something better than the AVR 8500.

    Although, none of this really matters as I don't think the original poster is planning on spending this much on speakers for his computer. If he had a few tens of thousands to spend, he'd probably buy a new car instead.
     
  20. sAmBaL BeLaCaN thread starter macrumors member

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    #20
    Although, none of this really matters as I don't think the original poster is planning on spending this much on speakers for his computer. If he had a few tens of thousands to spend, he'd probably buy a new car instead.

    Yeah right, I won't be able spend a lot of money on that 'very high-end' speaker set ;then probably I would reconsider to buy another set of Powermac G5, Cinema Display 30" and also the space of my room,interior design, and all otheer stuff. That will blown the entire apartment woo - hoo!!!!

    One more thing;

    I wonder what makes their speaker so unique (B&W , Klipsch, Orb, etc) ?

    Based on suggestions what makes Pro Media series 'better than GMX series?

    Thanx!
     
  21. feakbeak macrumors 6502a

    feakbeak

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    #21
    To preface this post, I am not an engineer. My best friend is an audiophile. He sold the equipment for several years and got to know quite a few reps and even met some of the designers of high-end audio equipment. I've had the opportunity to listen to systems costing over $50,000. Yeah, it sounded great, but certainly not $50,000 great. Most (not all) audiophiles are snobs when it comes to equipment/music - trust me.

    What makes a speaker unique or better sounding is not an exact science. With that said, a lot of science goes into making good speakers. Nearly all of the computer/multimedia speakers are driver-based. So you have to consider the quality of the driver, the material the driver is made from, the crossovers involved if you have a speaker with multiple drivers. Then the construction and material used in creating the cabinet of the speaker is also very important. There are tons of speakers out there, what makes some sound good and some sound like crap, I'm not 100% certain. Moreover, I really don't care.

    What I have learned from living with my audiophile friend for seven years during and after college is this... don't stress and worry about the how's and why's. Just listen to a variety of speakers and buy the ones that sound best to you. Take your iPod or your favorite CDs and listen to the same tracks on different speakers, buy whatever you like the best that fits your budget.

    As I said earlier you can find great speakers for a decent price, but you really have to research it a bit. Listening is always the best way to buy, but it is often not feasible since the best products are usually rather obscure.

    Opinion about Bose:
    Trust me if you heard the Swan M-200's in a store next to Bose, you would laugh at Bose. There are speakers that sound much worse than Bose. However, Bose must be the most over-priced speakers on the planet. It's all marketing and hype, they are not that good. They always sound thin and tinny, no imaging, no detail. Are they small and compact? Yes, but if that is not your reason for buying then you shouldn't be buying Bose. Do most people say "Wow, you have Bose!"? Yes, does that mean you should buy them? No.

    Good luck with your purchase. Let us know what you decide to get.
     
  22. danm macrumors member

    danm

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    #22
    I think the problem is really just 'proper terminology'. The poster asked for recommendations concerning 'high end' speakers and then lists the stuff low end budget stuff he did. I'm not being condescending, I simply think many individuals coming from the 'computer' world don't realize the size and depth of the 'audio' world and what 'high end ' means.
     
  23. feakbeak macrumors 6502a

    feakbeak

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    #23
    Valid point. Isn't my Mac mini a high-end Mac? :cool:
     
  24. sonicj macrumors member

    sonicj

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