Best Music Speakers for the Imac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by macsander, Feb 19, 2008.

  1. macsander macrumors regular


    Feb 18, 2008

    I love music, so I want the best speakers to listen to it, I want incredible sound.
    I would like to know what the best speakers are for listening music up to 500$..
    What would be better 5.1 or 2.1? I know you can't listen music in surround but sound through 4-5 boxes sounds better or not?

    And please if you have experience with the Logitech z-5500 also let me know, because this is my favourite candidate atm;) till some people come with better suggestions (or not)

    Please come up with the best suggestions! Thanks a lot!:)

    Kind regards,
  2. El Phantasmo macrumors member

    Jul 9, 2005
    humm.. i guess your best bet is to get a nice stereo receiver and stereo speakers combo for $500... make sure it has optical audio inputs and you're set.

    if you want incredible sounding music dont buy computer speakers or 5.1 and dont use mp3s, go for a losless format and real speakers... good luck
  3. gowmrg macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2007
    Im not so sure. I have a set of harmon kardon soundsticks and subwoofer for Imac G5

    For plug ins they are not to be sniffed at
  4. QCassidy352 macrumors G4


    Mar 20, 2003
    Bay Area
    I have the same, and I agree - they are darn good. But with a $500 budget he could do better. :)
  5. El Phantasmo macrumors member

    Jul 9, 2005
    yeah buddy i'm sure there are some really nice computer speakers.. and h&k is a really good brand, but i dont think they hold a candle to a $500 set of stereo speakers....
  6. macsander thread starter macrumors regular


    Feb 18, 2008
    Ok, but which speakers do you suggest for my pc because I don't know which to buy?
  7. ghettochris macrumors 6502a

    Feb 19, 2008
    please don't go buy computer speakers for music, for $150 at bestbuy you get logitec crap, or you could do something to make an audiophile proud:

    if you can find some nice speakers with high sensitivity (at least 89db) you can't find anything better than the $30 t-amp.

    i have it hooked up to some klipschorns (104db sensitivity :cool:)

    the analog out of the mac is the weak link of the system, looking for a nice dac to feed the t-amp. sounds amazing as is though. 5.1 is more for a home movie theater.

    if you're not in the market for absurd speakers (i got mine handed down) the best bookshelf speakers i've found are sound dynamics rts-3, retailed at $200 (89db, so no earth shaking without a sub), sounds better than anything less than 1k, but they're discontinued now. i saw some go for $75 on ebay recently. combined with the t-amp, it's an amazing setup for less than decent bestbuy computer speakers.
  8. macsander thread starter macrumors regular


    Feb 18, 2008
    But the thing is, I have all my music on my pc, so I need speakers hooked up to my pc. So is the best possible sound Logitech z-5500, Bose companion 5 or another sounds system?
    (Z-5500 is 93db so that should be fine or not?)

    What is the best, Pc speakers(suggestions) or another way to hook up speakers and sub to you pc, please explain how and which speakers.

    Thanks for the help!
  9. skiesforme macrumors 6502


    Feb 4, 2008
    I have a Z-5500 at Home. Just bought(today) the Harman Kardon Soundsticks II for my Workspace and also own a Kensington S5500 for office use.
    About the Z-5500, they are definitely one of the best in the $200-$300 price range. I got 'em for $259 4 months back. You can get them for $209 now(I saw 2 deals on Dell Home $259-$50 MIR). I love the Control Pod and the look n feel of the Z but my only complaint - weak right n left channels at times when using the Direct Channel mode. I believe its definitely a great idea to go for the Z's given. You won't be disappointed. Be prepared for some "BLAST" though :cool: !!
    But if I had $1500-$2000 - I would get the Bose Lifestyle thingie, kidding ;)
  10. queshy macrumors 68040


    Apr 2, 2005
    Isn't music only 2 channels anyway? I don't know much about this, though. I have the HK Sound sticks II and they sound amazing for music. they are $199 around.
  11. gothamm macrumors 6502a

    Nov 18, 2007
    $109.99 at amazon i believe ;)
  12. ghettochris macrumors 6502a

    Feb 19, 2008
    if you want awesome sound out of your computer or ipod cheap, the t-amp is the miracle product you want.

    it is the 2nd generation of the amp that shocked the audiophiles, the original was $30 but you had to buy a $20 power supply or use 8 AAs all the time, so it's almost as cheap at $60 for included ac power.

    you plug it right into your ipod headphone jack or computer speaker output, I have 2 of these, 1 hooked to the imac and the klipschorns, and 1 in the basement hooked to some rts-3's and a powered sub that is hooked to the airport express, or i can unplug that cable and hook it to my ipod if i want.

    the amp held it's own against ones 100x it's price, i will probably never buy computer speakers or even a home theater receiver again. the last amp i had was huge, this thing is like a can of tuna. if you love music and don't have one of these yet you're missing out.

    I think it would be hard to beat a $60 t-amp and $100 used rts-3 speakers (plus powered sub if you need lots of kick, but not needed for full rich sound)

    $500 computer speakers will not sound as good as this solution, and it is likely to sound as good as someone's $3k plus system. this should be a no brainer. any speakers 90db or higher sensitivity will be awesome with the t-amp. don't let the low power rating scare you.
  13. ghettochris macrumors 6502a

    Feb 19, 2008
    To directly answer the post question, i'd say the best (bookshelf size) music speakers for the imac are the sound dynamics rts-3, retail of $200 but discontinued. they were reviewed as not being able to be beat until you get above $1k speakers. if you want floor tower the rts-5 and rts-7 are the bigger brothers, but i have not heard them myself.

    keep an eye on ebay for the rts-3, i saw some go for $75 a few months back.

    and the $60 t-amp is all you need to hook them up to your computer.

    you should still have a few hundred to get a nice powered sub if you want.
  14. gowmrg macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2007

    The Sonic Impact T Amp is fascinating me.

    Anybody know where it is available in the Uk. Do Maplin sell it?
  15. DHart macrumors 6502


    Jan 17, 2008
    You did say you want the "best" music sound... that rules out "computer" speakers. My money is on Audio Engine 5's. Read some reviews on them... incredible.

    Definitely don't bother with "computer" speakers... they just don't even begin to measure up compared to quality speakers for fine musical quality. You wanted "the best", so you're going to have to spend some money and get something you will really thrill to listen to.

    Great pricing on them here:

    TO really round out the low end fully and powerfully, you will also want to add a powered, non-ported subwoofer. Don't get a vented (ported) sub as most of them tend to sound quite "boomy". They're common in the consumer audio stores, but sealed gives better, cleaner bass notes. For tight, articulate, clean-clean-clean bass you want a sealed-powered subwoofer. Expect to spend around $500 (and up) for this part of your system.

    If you decide to follow the high-er end audio system approach you do need to pay attention to the amplification (most buy a receiver) quality. Most "receivers" don't offer very good amp sections. Do you really want the radio? I didn't think so.... so go for a great pair of powered speakers and drive them from your Mac. Or go for an integrated amplifier (this means the pre and power amps are integrated into one cabinet). THis subject is deep and far beyond the scope of this thread. Do some homework.
  16. Wayne s macrumors regular

    Oct 12, 2007
    Me as well.

    Looks like it has been dropped from Amazon, I can not find itany where else except from ebay.
  17. apfel macrumors newbie

    Apr 20, 2007
    Go for the audioengine 5. I have two pairs and I love them...
  18. cmac101 macrumors newbie

    Jun 16, 2006
    The Big Easy
    If you truly want amazing sound, go with a nice stereo receiver and a good pair of floor speakers. It doesn't really matter what brand of receiver you get, but I recommend Kilpsch speakers. I have them connected to a sony receiver and it sounds amazing. Otherwise I would go with the Bose Companion 5 computer speakers.
  19. jaredisme macrumors newbie

    Feb 17, 2008
    Well I have an average quality logitech set of speakers and they are amazing. I am very satisfied with them so I would just go for the logitechs if I were you.
  20. chris001 macrumors regular


    Jan 31, 2008

    just go to any futureshop/best buy and go pick them up.
    just buy it to try it..

    if you want to spend around $100 there is nothing better than the logitech z-2300's... i guarantee these will blow your mind they are 2.1

    if you want more, which i seriously doubt you'll need since you are just listening to music/youtube vids.

    go for logitech z-5000's series.

    and when you compare quality with price compared to bose or HK, you won't see much difference. i don't really think you need to spend $500 on speakers.

    get the z-2300's i GUARANTEE you will like them.. and they POUND!!
  21. DHart macrumors 6502


    Jan 17, 2008
    Note... he asked for the "BEST" music speakers and wanted "incredible" sound. Nothing for $100 will even come close to that. Then again, one person's "Best" may be another person's "yuck".

    The "best" computer speaker is probably similar to "marginal low-end" music speakers. SO it's really difficult to answer this question... you did say "Best" and "MUSIC" and "$500". You didn't mention if you want the speakers to sit on your desk, sit on a bookshelf, sit on floor stands, or be towers sitting on the floor. BIG difference between all of those choices. You didn't mention having a separate amplifier, so I presume you want a self-powered speaker system oriented toward being driven directly by a music source such as an iPod or your Mac. With that in mind and considering your budget and desire for best, incredible music reproduction, as mentioned earlier, you should have a close look at the A5 or, a scaled down, the A2:
  22. tuxtpenguin macrumors regular

    May 19, 2007
    I have the Harman Kardon Soundsticks II and they work just great.
  23. macsander thread starter macrumors regular


    Feb 18, 2008
    Do they have a lot of power, cause I would like some nice loudness in my room.
    How is the connetion to your mac/pc, which cables?

    Are there other people who have experience with the Audio Engine A5's?


    Another note,

    Do you miss a subwoofer with the a5's or is there enough bass in them, Can you give a link of a sub you would recommend to go with them, my budget is 500$ and in the Netherlands these speakers are allready 450$, so please give me some good advice;)

  24. MascisMan macrumors member

    Feb 13, 2008
    I have the Klipsch 2.1 setup and it sounds fantastic
  25. ghettochris macrumors 6502a

    Feb 19, 2008

    they upgraded to rev 2, but it has a power brick, so the old one would have been $50. look for rev 2 on amazon, i think i saw it there for $10 less.

    and if during your order you feel it is necessary to become the man, buy this too.

    haven't tried these but look promising too.


    DHart, try some bookshelf rts 3's on a t-amp before you say you can't get amazing sound for $100. that's the nature of giant killers. The soundstage and depth are amazing on them, almost seems better than my giant klipschorns. Just add a sub (or use khorns :p) if you need it loud.

    plus and minus to those speakers being discontinued, hard to find, but if it shows on ebay you wil get them for less than $100, unless a few people from here figure out how sweet they are and bid battle for them :cool:

    i mean how can you read this review and NOT want a t-amp?

    my fav pic from the review:

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