Seeking suggestions for speakers - inexpensive, minimum of cables

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by mrfoof82, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. mrfoof82 macrumors 6502a

    May 26, 2010
    Lawton, OK
    I'm still holding out for a 27" LED Cinema Display to come into existence. I figure I'll get one, and eventually replace the new 2010 Mini with a 27" iMac once a mobile Radeon 57xx or 58xx is dropped in (and have dual 27-inch displays).

    In the interim I have my 23" HD Apple Cinema Display from early 2005 (aluminum, DVI, USB2/Firewire 400 hub). For audio I currently use some Sony studio monitors, but circumaural monitors do tend to make your ears sweat after a while. This being said, I'm looking for a stopgap audio solution.

    Here's the requirements:
    • Needs to be crystal clear at 3 feet. 10 feet is a bonus, but merely a nice to have. 2W to 4W total output is probably more than sufficient.
    • Lack of an AC adapter is a HUGE plus.
    • A minimum of cables. Ideally I'd like the limit to be one speaker to be connected to the Mac via some interface (USB, Firewire or Audio Out), and the other daisy-chained. However battery-powered bluetooth would also be fine as long as rechargeable battery cells are viable.
    • A subwoofer is not required.
    • Should be compact and look decent. Nothing gimmicky looking. No translucent plastic or acrylic.
    • No required drivers.
    • Ideally I'd like to keep it under $50, though very well-designed solutions I'm always willing to pay for (hell, I have an Eames lounge!)

    Thanks in advance. Please provide links if you can. Big bonus if I can just pick them up at an Apple Retail store (since there's 8 within 30 minutes).
  2. Icaras macrumors 603


    Mar 18, 2008
    California, United States
    I really don't know what you're trying to go for as you mentioned you had monitor speakers, and I don't think you'll find ANY monitor speakers for under $50 (and if by monitor speakers, I assume professional studio monitors). I'm also a little confused by the third item on your list, about having one speaker connected to the computer, and the other daisy chained :confused:

    However, I just bought the Logitech Z205 for my wife and it seems to fit a few of your listed requirements. Here's a link to the product page:

    I bought these for her Macbook Pro so she could have louder audio than the built in audio, and keep her machine easily portable while watching TV shows or streaming video. They're supposed to be designed for minimal laptop audio, but they could fit any LCD panel really (It needn't be clipped on the top of the LCD. It can easily be placed under your LCD if you'd prefer). Like I noted, these are a far cry from monitor speakers. You won't get much power from them, but that being said, I was actually impressed with the volume of this set. These are definitely audible within 10 feet. I tried finding the specs for these, but couldn't find any. It's probably marginal enough not worth noting. I have yet to really put them through their paces with more dynamic audio content. I'll give Team Fortress 2 a try tonight and see how they fare :)

    Like you though I was searching for something uber minimal, and the Z205 fit the bill. A little bit too good in fact, as you'll notice it's a speaker bar, rather than two individual left and right speaker chassis', which gets rid of the usual cable connecting the left and right channels altogether. And since they are USB powered, the only thing required is one USB cable. No AC power supply needed. It's truly the most minimal external sound option I've ever seen. The Dell sound bar is the same thing, but seem to be only for Dell monitors of course.

    Since the speaker bar is not that large, the left and right channels are not that far apart from each other, which does limit the amount of dynamic stereo imaging you'll get. I can see this as a problem for someone using a large screen LCD, such as your 23" ACD, and soon to be 27" ACD (if it ever comes out...) :p

    Apologies if this really isn't what you're looking for, but they are 1) inexpensive, and 2) use a mnimum amount of cables. So I just thought I'd throw that suggestion out there. But really, if you're looking for something truly minimal here, I would probably suggest you forgo any external speaker set up and stick with the 27" ACD's internal speaker system. Most likely it will be on par with the current iMac's internal sound quality, if not better, which is actually of very good quality for an internal speaker system.

    The great thing about the iMac are the speaker grills are cleverly hidden under the chin, which makes it the best minimal option out there IMO. It makes it practically non-existent. If you're not looking for large, powerful sound, I would just recommend waiting for the 27" ACD and just using that for audio.
  3. henrikrox macrumors 65816


    Feb 3, 2010
    I just got this speaker set, very cheap, but very good sound quality for the price, good bass, very clean look, u get it in different colors. Grey looks very much like the aluminium used on macs.

    heres a picture


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