Best sound system for solely music??? Tips?

eric.schaller87

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 27, 2008
12
0
South Jersey
Hi, I recently bought an AirPort Express for my bedroom to use with airtunes, now i need to pick out a sound system to use with it. I will use it only for music so what would be the best options to buy for under $400? Also, stereo or surround? any other advice would be great.
 

elpenguino

macrumors member
Jul 31, 2008
54
1
Florida
From my experience, Bang and Olufsen has the best sound. Beneath that (and probably in you're price range) is Bose, JBL, and Sony.

I would get a receiver. It allows you to expand your system when you want.

Don't go out and buy huge speakers just because you can afford them. Little 5, 6 in. speakers can fill out a normal size bedroom. If you want some thump thump, buy a subwoofer.

If you're good at wiring, go buy your own cable. The lower the gage the better. Philips makes good wiring for a good price (get it at Lowe's or Radio Shack).

Don't bother with surround. Spend you're money on two good speakers, not a lot of crappy ones.

You get what you pay for. If you pay 400 for two small speakers, they're probably worth it.

Listen before you buy!! Just because you bring it home doesn't make it better.

Thats all I got man. Happy Listening.
 

Zortrium

macrumors 6502
Jun 23, 2003
460
0
Klipsch is worth a look too. Just got a set of Promedia 2.1's and am very happy with them.
 

GimmeSlack12

macrumors 603
Apr 29, 2005
5,396
7
San Francisco
I think JBL, Klipsch, or Logitech even has some decent surround setups. Bang Olfson is rather expensive gear. So expensive that I have never really listened to a system.
 

nutmac

macrumors 601
Mar 30, 2004
4,218
2,108
From my experience, Bang and Olufsen has the best sound. Beneath that (and probably in you're price range) is Bose, JBL, and Sony.

I would get a receiver. It allows you to expand your system when you want.
While getting a receiver and a good set of speakers is the best option, B&O, Bose, JBL, and Sony are all known for making speakers that delivers mass market audio quality.

Brands like Axiom, B&W, and NHT may not be common household names but well respected in audiophile community (and many are not at all expensive).
 

Xander562

macrumors 68000
Apr 2, 2006
1,628
0
I have the AudioEngine A5s and they are good. Might want to look into a subwoofer if you like that melt-your-guts-bass though as this is a 2.0 system. However I do not have a subwoofer yet and they have adequate bass on their own.
 

DolsJ

macrumors member
Aug 27, 2008
52
53
JBL or Klipsch

I would agree that the above two are probably your best bet in this price range. While they both tend to be a little bass heavy for a slighty muddy sound (which sometimes I prefer) they are an excellent value for the price. I have a set of klipsch pro media 5.1 speakers which sound great and have survived 4 years 3 moves and being repeatedly knocked over by kittens.
 

J the Ninja

macrumors 68000
Jul 14, 2008
1,824
0
wow.. scrap bose completely I guess... What about a sony mini hifi system?
Not much of an improvement. Their home theater in a box systems are very similar to Bose, just without the price gouging (for the most part). Mini systems have terrible speakers. Never heard one that sounded good.

If you want a surround sound system on a very tight budget, listen to the person who suggested Onkyo. They make good HTiB for the money. They also give you a real and standardized receiver (albeit a cheap and stripped down one, but a real receiver nonetheless). Meaning new speakers and a sub can be put into the system as drop-in upgrades.

Considering you already have the Airport, you don't really need a receiver, or any sort of pre-amp. You should look into getting a small amp, and some decent bookshelf speakers. The Tweak City Audio GIZMO will be going on sale sometime soon:

http://tweakcityaudio.com/forum/showthread.php?t=69


Toss in some bookshelf speakers, and you are good to go:

http://www.av123.com

http://www.svsound.com

http://www.axiomaudio.com

http://www.hsuresearch.com
 

Bengt77

macrumors 68000
Jun 7, 2002
1,518
0
Europe
Why not go for somewhat higher end, but still cheap enough, though not (yet) quite mass market brands? Look for Harman Kardon, Yamaha, NAD, Marantz, Denon or Onkyo for a receiver and then for Infinity, Kef, JBL, Klipsch, Mission or even Mordaunt for speakers. Shouldn't be too expensive.

Shop around on internet. You should be able to find many electronics stores with outlet sales where they offer somewhat older models from the aforementioned brands. Very good place to pick up really good gear. Any model from these brands should be tons better than anything Sony, Bose and truly mass market brands like Samsung, JVC and Panasonic offer for a reasonable sum.
 

eric.schaller87

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 27, 2008
12
0
South Jersey
i think ill just head to a best buy or tweeter and check out their selections to see what i prefer. Thanks everyone for their input, and for steering me away from bose!
 

J the Ninja

macrumors 68000
Jul 14, 2008
1,824
0
i think ill just head to a best buy or tweeter and check out their selections to see what i prefer. Thanks everyone for their input, and for steering me away from bose!
Worst Buy has a very poor selection, and what speakers they do have tend to be sold at much higher prices than most places. Tweeter is a little better, so start there.
 

Scepticalscribe

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Jul 29, 2008
46,415
31,195
The Far Horizon
I'm grateful to J the Ninja for putting me right about Bose. Must confess that I had swallowed their extremely slick PR, and had bought one of their CD/Radio players some years ago. It was never as good as it was supposed to be; oh dear, whoops. Your link has given me reasons why this might have been the case. Thanks; it's always good to have one's eyes opened, and to have to face unpalatable truths. Cheers
 

Galley

macrumors 65816
Mar 24, 2008
1,181
34
The Griffin Ampifi is amazing, and it's only $100! At that price, you can get one for every room. :D
 

elpenguino

macrumors member
Jul 31, 2008
54
1
Florida
I gotta go with J the Ninja too. I admit, I threw Bose in there on word of mouth. I'm a convert :D

Eric, stay small. Chances are you don't need a home theater system.
 

KJdanReuben

macrumors regular
May 22, 2007
153
0
I would check out places like Circuit City and stuff for "open box" items. I just got $350+ Denon for $220, in perfect condition. Keep in mind this is a 7.1 channel HDMI system. In your position, I would probably go with a surround sound receiver, even if you won't be using it at this moment for surround. It will run stereo just fine. As far as speakers go, Polk, Klipsch, JBL, and Infinity are all good. If you do get a receiver, I would stay away from Sony or Panasonic, names you see in everything from cameras to car speakers to computers. Because there focus isn't only in audio, they won't be as good. I would go with Denon, Onkyo, Yamaha, or Pioneer (and yes I know Yamaha and Pioneer do more than just audio, but their stuff is good, receiver wise anyway). Again, check about "open box" items, don't be afraid of them.