just a few extra Q's if you don't mind Cosmix:
Listening distance near- or far-field? (near-field: <3 to ~6 feet)
Listening room dimensions? (because I've found a small, corner-loaded sub is often enough for small rooms)
A musical "bargain basement" options that won't sound terrible
$40 - Dayton B652 bookshelf
$89 - Dayton SUB-800
$XXX - Pick any: Topping Amp
or a DTA-100a
or a cheaper Audiosource amp
I've used a few Toppings (mainly for dorm room audiophiles or those wanting 4Ω support), own a DTA, and setup a "personal bar" system using the bigger Audiosource and found they're all good. So pick your poison depending on your needs for power, connectivity, DAC need, etc. Although if you have a receiver handy you could just power it off that.
I will stress "won't sound terrible" though. Especially if you've dabbled in some of the higher end headphones available.
Consider that the better chunk of that budget is going to good amplification and a sub, so expect the bookshelves to be adequate but lacking.
I've personally found good floor-standing speakers to be adequate without a sub, but that depends on taste. My Polk 55Ts attached to my living room TV are fine for most things I need, although a sub is pending once I find how tolerant my apartment's neighbors are.
Note: Some people rave about this Lepai LP-2020A
amp, but I've never used it myself. Although I suppose if you keep your expectations at the proper budget and use it for near-field, it would likely be more than sufficient and would cut the expenses down enough for better mains.I use (Click to show)
I've personally been using a set of sealed Tritrix (came in a kit, I provided box) and a Dayton Classic 8" sub (again I built the box), powered off a DTA-100a and Dayton SA100 respectively.
If I were to make a small budget stereo setup (Click to show)
The cost came to around $140 for the Tritrix kit, $50 for the sub driver, $100 for the DTA-100a, and $100 for the SA100.
The clarity's not as nice as my assorted headphones available, but the arrangement does well for when I'm mulling about the area rather than tied down to the desk.
LR Polk 55T
More speakers pending time to actually build some haha.
Opt for some Overnight Sensation MTMs
(kits available here
Probably a Dayton Reference 8"
(HF or HO depending on design constraint). ~$110
Pick your choice of amplification. I'd probably just run off a receiver and strap an SA250 or a Bash 300W plate amp for the sub. $XXX
I'd bet there's also good studio monitor options that would come in budget, but I can't make a good suggestion for those. so someone else will need to chime in.
and for what it's worth. It may be a better choice to go with the bigger 10" or 12" Dayton powered subs. Competing ones are also worth looking into, but I typically build my stuff so I can't properly say.Edited by Firestorm252 - 7/28/13 at 12:26am