Thinking of getting a new set of speakers...have no clue.

RussianSensation

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Sep 5, 2003
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Hi. I currently have Creative 5.1 5300 Inspire system. It has 48Watt total RMS output and is very similar to THIS one I currently use onboard sound on Abit IS7 i865. I have used these speakers since 2001, but I'd like something better now that I am finishing university :)

I am primarily looking for a system that sounds good for music. I only have a 19 inch monitor and prefer to watch movies in the theatre or on regular tv. I mainly listen to dance, house, and trance music, some r&b and hip hop. I lack knowledge regarding music hardware but I think I would need good treble (dedicated tweeters?) and mid-range drivers. Just like my old speakers I intend to keep this for a while.

I was looking at products in this price range:
$250 Z5500 - is logitech going to come out with a new system fairly soon?
$250-300 5.1 Klipsch - there are concerns that a lot of these fail (not sure how valid)
$299 - Athena Technologies Micra 6 - do i need to get a separate receiver for these or can I plug them into a sound card? (sorry I am a total noob)

I read some reviews and from these 3 I found: Athena Technologies Micra 6 - "Given it's MSRP of $550 it is truly hard to beat in terms of value and performance." But Bestbuy has it at $299 right now which is even cheaper....
1. I do not mind buying X-FI sound card with the package since I realize onboard is not going to cut it (any ideas when X-fi cheaper OEM cards will come out?)
2. I do not mind spending a bit more for better speakers close to this price range (perhaps Onkyo speakers? Onkyo HT-S780)
3. I know some of you will probably recommend 2 bookshelf quality speakers over "poor" 5.1 system...is that a better choice for music?

Sorry for the long thread. Any advice would be highly appreciated.

 

aboothman

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Mar 21, 2004
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Originally posted by: Smartazz
I have the Z5500's I love them, not good for music though, just for games.


I disagree....they sound great with music. This is subjective, of course, but if you have a decent soundcard you should be able to adjust the EQ to give you a great sound.
 

eddiebravo

Senior member
Nov 29, 2005
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i dont know about the klipsch 5.1s, but ive had my 2.1's for well over 5 years now and they still kick ass. music sounds AWESOME on these speakers, although i can only vouch for the sound of rock music because i dont listen to trance, house, dance, r&b or hiphop
 

phantom404

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Nov 2, 2004
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If its the Klipsch 5.1 ultras which 99 percent they are, its the same thing I have and they kick. I know the original klipsch 5.1 had problems with the amp in the sub going out but the the issues were takin care of with the ultras.
 

Smartazz

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Dec 29, 2005
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Originally posted by: aboothman
Originally posted by: Smartazz
I have the Z5500's I love them, not good for music though, just for games.


I disagree....they sound great with music. This is subjective, of course, but if you have a decent soundcard you should be able to adjust the EQ to give you a great sound.

they're good with music, not great, he wants this for music, I think a 2 speaker configuration would do the job with that.
 

A5

Diamond Member
Jun 9, 2000
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If you're just doing music, go for a good 2.1 system and use the money you save to get a sound card. The Klipsch 2.1 set should sound a lot better than what you have now, especially paired with an X-Fi or other good sound card (M-Audio Revo, for another example). You may also like the Logitech Z-2300, since it has a bigger (but not necessarily better) sub than the Klipsch set (and looking at your music types, I'm assuming that you enjoy bass :p)
 

RussianSensation

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Sep 5, 2003
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Hey guys thanks for the replies so far. So a Klipsch 2.1 system would be better than similarly priced 5.1 like Logitech 5300e?

So the general concensus is that $300 speakers for music are overkill?
 

eddiebravo

Senior member
Nov 29, 2005
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Originally posted by: A5
If you're just doing music, go for a good 2.1 system and use the money you save to get a sound card. The Klipsch 2.1 set should sound a lot better than what you have now, especially paired with an X-Fi or other good sound card (M-Audio Revo, for another example). You may also like the Logitech Z-2300, since it has a bigger (but not necessarily better) sub than the Klipsch set (and looking at your music types, I'm assuming that you enjoy bass :p)


i cannot imagine needed more bass than the klipsch 2.1's offer. i dont even turn the sub anywhere near 1/2 power unless i want to piss off my apartment neighboors.
 

Bluestealth

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Jul 5, 2004
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Originally posted by: phantom404
If its the Klipsch 5.1 ultras which 99 percent they are, its the same thing I have and they kick. I know the original klipsch 5.1 had problems with the amp in the sub going out but the the issues were takin care of with the ultras.
I have read some reviews of the ultras complaining of this... exactly why I didn't buy them, even though in every other regard they seem to beat the Z-5500, except in price. Which I didn't get because people said that their sound quality for music wasn't that great. Have no comment on the Athena's though... pro/against because I haven't looked at them. If you listen to music get the Klipsch, if you watch more movies and games, get the Z-5500 they can be bought for much less.

Edit:
The Onkyo HT-S780 are great speakers for their price, but if you are planning to hook them up to a comptuer I recommend gettings the SKS-HT530, which are the same speakers but without the Onkyo reciever, unless you are getting a DTS/DDL soundcard since it only has a 5.1 multichannel in(will not upconvert to 7.1). That or get a 5.1 theater in the box and use any soundcard.
I use the Onkyo SKS-HT530 + Yamaha HTR-5860 reciever hooked up to my Audigy 2 ZS, in your case you would want to use an X-Fi. The Athena's appear to require a 5.1 reciever so bump the price on those up $70-200.
I paid $200 for the speakers, and $310 for my reciever, so add $110 for X-Fi, and $15-30 of cables and you will get the price you'd pay.
Think a DDL/DTS card would be a bit cheaper because you could use the bundled reciever and wouldn't need to buy additional cables.
 

RussianSensation

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Sep 5, 2003
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Bluestealth, I am looking to hook the speakers up to my computer. So you are saying I would only need SKS-HT530, proper cables and X-fi and no need for a receiver? How will I hook up the speakers to the sound card though, or do they not have the regular black/red speaker wires? I would imagine that setup will sound better than Z5500/Klipsch ?
 

Bluestealth

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Jul 5, 2004
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Originally posted by: RussianSensation
Bluestealth, I am looking to hook the speakers up to my computer. So you are saying I would only need SKS-HT530, proper cables and X-fi and no need for a receiver? How will I hook up the speakers to the sound card though, or do they not have the regular black/red speaker wires? I would imagine that setup will sound better than Z5500/Klipsch ?

Nope... I was trying to say you would need a DTS/DDL soundcard for the 7.1 HT-S780(or use it in 5.1 mode with an analog card :() .... or the HT530 and a reciever(w 7.1 multichannel input) like the Yamaha HTR-5860 and a 7.1 analog soundcard(Like the X-Fi).

BTW it does sound good :)
 

RussianSensation

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Sep 5, 2003
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Originally posted by: Bluestealth

Nope... I was trying to say you would need a DTS/DDL soundcard for the 7.1 HT-S780(or use it in 5.1 mode with an analog card :() .... or the HT530 and a reciever(w 7.1 multichannel input) like the Yamaha HTR-5860 and a 7.1 analog soundcard(Like the X-Fi).

BTW it does sound good :)

Hmmmm.....the cheapest HT530 I found online is $360 (includes shipping). Then I'd need a receiver like you said (so another $200+, the Yamaha is $300 and X-FI another $100). That's about $660-770. S780 is $349 without cables and without shipping. I am not sure how much a DTS/DDL sound card would cost. But you said it would work in 5.1 mode in analog. Would S780 in 5.1 analog with X-fi sound worse than Z5500+X-FI which can be found for $350 including shipping? ah...decisions....
 

Bluestealth

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Jul 5, 2004
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Which site did you go to? B&H has then for $199 and $46 shipping.... too bad you can't get free shipping like on mine though :(

Hmmm... pricegrabber is not your friend :)

Yeah the S780 has come down a lot in price, and I already had the sound card... plus I got a better deal then is out there right now.... S780 + DDL/DTS sound card might be your best option...

The X-Fi in 5.1 mode with the S780 would probably sound better then the Z-5500s... and you could still use the digital out for movies in 7.1...

BTW a reciever + Sub and 2 Bookshelf/Reference Speakers is probably an even better choice if you just use it for music... The rear speakers add little for music, though I guess some would argue the sound field effect... I am not an audiophile.... but this is likely to cost even more to get something good since you have to buy it all seperatly in most cases
 

RussianSensation

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Sep 5, 2003
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Originally posted by: Bluestealth
Which site did you go to? B&H has then for $199 and $46 shipping.... too bad you can't get free shipping like on mine though :(

What's B&H, do you have a link?

.... S780 + DDL/DTS sound card might be your best option...

Would this card work? Turtle Beach TBS-3300-01 Montego DDL - $80
The problem is Turtle Beach has stated that they will NOT support 64-bit Windows XP with this card. The problem is that I plan to buy a new gaming system rig at the end of the year so what card can I find that will support Vista and still give me DDL/DDS support and have EAX support for games in the future?

There is AuzenTech XPlosion 7.1 card too.

The X-Fi in 5.1 mode with the S780 would probably sound better then the Z-5500s... and you could still use the digital out for movies in 7.1...

Yah from what you've told me I might have to go with this option or save some money now and get something like X-fi Z5500 combo and when I save $1k, I'll get a full fledged system while this holds me over for a year. Thanks for all the help.
 

alcoholbob

Diamond Member
May 24, 2005
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It would probably be close between the Athenas and the Klipschs.

The Athenas do have a *true* center channel--true in the fact that it actually has dual drivers for slightly better off-axis performance.

You do need a receiver to use them, as you can see in the review, they even have a diagram showing how it needs to be connected. The subwoofer looks like it can only amplify two channels.
 

Bluestealth

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Jul 5, 2004
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What's B&H, do you have a link?
B&H Photo and Video

Would this card work? Turtle Beach TBS-3300-01 Montego DDL - $80
The problem is Turtle Beach has stated that they will NOT support 64-bit Windows XP with this card. The problem is that I plan to buy a new gaming system rig at the end of the year so what card can I find that will support Vista and still give me DDL/DDS support and have EAX support for games in the future?

There is AuzenTech XPlosion 7.1 card too.

Either card should work, DTS is superior then DDL so I would recommend the Auzentech more, even though I haven't used either card.

Vista support... hmmm.... think most cards are still supported as long as they have updated their drivers, based on what you said about turtle beach and XP 64 I might stay away from them
 

erikistired

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Sep 27, 2000
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i have the z-5500s and i like them other than they pop when the fridge or washer goes on or off (among other things). after doing some searching it isn't just me, it's quite a widespread problem.
 

Bluestealth

Senior member
Jul 5, 2004
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Originally posted by: fisher
i have the z-5500s and i like them other than they pop when the fridge or washer goes on or off (among other things). after doing some searching it isn't just me, it's quite a widespread problem.

My Brother's do that :p
 

gocubs2k5

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Mar 15, 2005
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I don't know how you can possibly use those klipsch speakers. They are so bright that it is like nails on a chalkboard, only even more annoying. I guess everyone's ears and tastes are different, but I wouldn't take those klipsch's even if they were free.
 

Excelsior

Lifer
May 30, 2002
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IMO, the bottomline is: For music, start off with a good pair of speakers...then add on as you can afford it.
 

RussianSensation

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Sep 5, 2003
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Do you guys know if new Intel conroe motherboards will support DDL/DDS with their HD audio onboard chipsets similar to Nforce 2 soundstorm? I can wait until July if it saves me buying $100 sound card just for the sole purpose of having the support to run a HTIB system off my computer?
 

sandeep108

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May 24, 2005
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I can wait until July if it saves me buying $100 sound card just for the sole purpose of having the support to run a HTIB system off my computer?
I am not too sure about this but if your board has digital out, then receiver+speakers through digital may be a better way out - you do not need a $100 sound card. You use the receiver's DAC and upmixing features.