Possible speaker upgrade

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Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Mon Dec 17, 2012 5:16 pm

I have been using an Altec Lansing ATP5 4.1 speaker setup for 11 years now, and wondering if there is anything out there that will sound as good or should I keep my old system. I dont want to spend a fortune for a new rig, just looking for what people are using for their own rigs and what is good and what is junk.
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Mon Dec 17, 2012 6:13 pm

If the woofer in the sub module uses a paper cone or foam surround, you might check to see if there is evidence of deterioration. Otherwise, the only upgrade that's going to make a big difference, IMO, is to upgrade to a receiver and some decent-quality monitor speakers.
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Mon Dec 17, 2012 8:51 pm

If you actually want quality analogue sound, get yourself a Xonar and a pair of quality stereo studio monitors. They're not the loudest things in the world but for a PC you're sitting right in front of, they should be plenty loud enough. Almost all X.1 setups suffer from a dead spot in between hissy treble and boomy bass; Getting a decent pair of monitors makes you realise just how much better all of your music sounds from something with a flat response curve.

If you just want positional gunfire and explosions that rumble your desk, then the ATP5 is no worse than any other set of half-decent PC speakers.

M-Audio powered monitors are decent - I stumbled upon some older BX8's cheap, but the BX5's are supposed to be very good for the money - you'll get proper kevlar/silk-dome speakers with good-quality amp circuitry and they'll be calibrated for flat response.
I've heard some Audioengine 2's in the flesh as well, and I was very impressed given the price and size, but they're not up to the sound quality of the larger units.

The main thing about getting studio monitors is that they mostly come with built-in amps, avoiding the need for a seperate amp. A studio monitor's built-in amp is not going to be as good as $800 amp+speakers seperates, but you need to be quite the audiophile to tell the difference; For most people (especially those dealing with compressed MP3 audio) you're well into the realms of diminishing returns if you want to move beyond studio monitors. Even a pair of A2's are significantly nicer to listen to than most "PC Speakers" which range from downright offensive to flawed, but in a way that at least adds character to the right sort of sounds.
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Mon Dec 17, 2012 9:30 pm

I have heard good things about the audioengine 5+ speakers, however I don't own them or have heard them personally.

I use a headset, however the 5+ have been on my short list for quite awhile.
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Mon Dec 17, 2012 9:38 pm

I recently got a pair of the Airmotiv 6's http://shop.emotivapro.com/

Completely. Blown. Away. They are too big for normal people to have on their desk, but I'm not normal :P Plus I use them as a sort of secondary stereo system for a mid-sized room in addition to desktop speakers by moving them to the edge of the desk. I'll get stands some time. Their full-range sound doesn't need a sub unless you're looking for palpable bass rumble. Anyway, they aren't cheap like computer speaker cheap but not terribly expensive - great value like all Emotiva stuff. If anyone is thinking of them, I would say the 5's are definitely more appropriately sized for a desktop system. And they are on sale this month :)
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Mon Dec 17, 2012 9:43 pm

If you really like your existing speakers and the surrounds are shot, a quick visit to a reputable local hi-fi shop will end up with a source who can slice out the old surrounds and apply new ones that meet the original specs. Re-coning or re-surrounding speakers is nothing new and an everyday part of the biz.
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:20 pm

If you want to keep a surround sound setup, then I would look into a HT style setup. That way you can pick and choose what sound, style, and budget that fits your needs. If you just want a 2.1 or 2 channel setup then there are multiple routes you can choose. There are the well known Corsair SP2500 if you want PC speakers. My desktop setup goes from desktop to mixer, to M-Audio Bx8a studio monitors. For my ears, they are night and day compared to my old z2300,must have be setup properly with a good source. It all depends on what you want to change with your speakers and what you use them for.
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Tue Dec 18, 2012 7:03 am

Captain Ned wrote:If you really like your existing speakers and the surrounds are shot, a quick visit to a reputable local hi-fi shop will end up with a source who can slice out the old surrounds and apply new ones that meet the original specs. Re-coning or re-surrounding speakers is nothing new and an everyday part of the biz.

What he said. Just find someone that knows what he/she is doing.
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Tue Dec 18, 2012 9:04 am

Nobody makes PC speakers like they used to :( Altec Lansing, which used to be one of my favorites, is now near-non-existent. Logitech has reduced the quality of even its top-end line. Klipsch is now a rarity.

What most folks are suggesting - bookshelf or larger / pro / home theater audio - is probably where you might be considering if you're thinking upgrading.

I personally have been looking at "upgrading" from PC speakers (I've owned Altec Lansing ADA305, Altec Lansing MX5021, Logitech Z-680, and Logitech Z-5300e). Specifically, I am looking at creating a "budget" setup, combining the following:

1 center channel with tweeter - haven't picked yet. ~$50-$100
1 pair Sony SS-5000 (R/L) - $150 total on Amazon
1 pair Sony SS-1000 (RR/LR) - $64 total on Amazon
1 woofer - haven't picked yet. ~$50-$100
1 AV receiver with optical, coax digital, as well as analog inputs ~$100-$200

Total will be around $411-$614, which is competitive with, for example, the current top-end set of Logitech Z906 at $340. Except MUCH LOUDER with better sound quality.

Food for thought :)
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Tue Dec 18, 2012 9:21 am

MadManOriginal wrote:I recently got a pair of the Airmotiv 6's http://shop.emotivapro.com/

Completely. Blown. Away. They are too big for normal people to have on their desk, but I'm not normal :P Plus I use them as a sort of secondary stereo system for a mid-sized room in addition to desktop speakers by moving them to the edge of the desk. I'll get stands some time. Their full-range sound doesn't need a sub unless you're looking for palpable bass rumble. Anyway, they aren't cheap like computer speaker cheap but not terribly expensive - great value like all Emotiva stuff. If anyone is thinking of them, I would say the 5's are definitely more appropriately sized for a desktop system. And they are on sale this month :)



Just checked it out, looks good, nice they have the frequency curve also, however they do not say where they are manufactured or whether or not the caps are Japanese. (important stuff for good monitors)
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Tue Dec 18, 2012 2:11 pm

anotherengineer wrote:
MadManOriginal wrote:I recently got a pair of the Airmotiv 6's http://shop.emotivapro.com/

Completely. Blown. Away. They are too big for normal people to have on their desk, but I'm not normal :P Plus I use them as a sort of secondary stereo system for a mid-sized room in addition to desktop speakers by moving them to the edge of the desk. I'll get stands some time. Their full-range sound doesn't need a sub unless you're looking for palpable bass rumble. Anyway, they aren't cheap like computer speaker cheap but not terribly expensive - great value like all Emotiva stuff. If anyone is thinking of them, I would say the 5's are definitely more appropriately sized for a desktop system. And they are on sale this month :)



Just checked it out, looks good, nice they have the frequency curve also, however they do not say where they are manufactured or whether or not the caps are Japanese. (important stuff for good monitors)

Where do you see the frequency curve? I can't even find the specs page. :oops:
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Re: Possible speaker upgrade

Postposted on Tue Dec 18, 2012 2:23 pm

Flying Fox wrote:
anotherengineer wrote:
MadManOriginal wrote:I recently got a pair of the Airmotiv 6's http://shop.emotivapro.com/

Completely. Blown. Away. They are too big for normal people to have on their desk, but I'm not normal :P Plus I use them as a sort of secondary stereo system for a mid-sized room in addition to desktop speakers by moving them to the edge of the desk. I'll get stands some time. Their full-range sound doesn't need a sub unless you're looking for palpable bass rumble. Anyway, they aren't cheap like computer speaker cheap but not terribly expensive - great value like all Emotiva stuff. If anyone is thinking of them, I would say the 5's are definitely more appropriately sized for a desktop system. And they are on sale this month :)



Just checked it out, looks good, nice they have the frequency curve also, however they do not say where they are manufactured or whether or not the caps are Japanese. (important stuff for good monitors)

Where do you see the frequency curve? I can't even find the specs page. :oops:

Here specs page, two tabs over is graphs: http://emotivapro.com/products/powered_ ... motiv4.php
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