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New speaker advice  

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 
Okay, so! I'm nearing the end of my upgrade path, and my birthday will let me check off one of 3 things; new speakers. Later comes an SSD to replace the fallen Falcon (long old story), and Windows 7 Ultimate to go with it. But for now, let's focus on speakers to replace my Z-2300s, and my rather simple requirements:
  • Under $200
  • No USB (obviously)
  • 2.0 or 2.1, honestly it doesn't matter
  • Whether or not it has a control pod doesn't matter
  • Needs to have long cables as they will sit slightly above the monitor on either side of it
  • Speaker design preferred to match the position (that is, not angled slightly upward)
  • Sound card to power them will be a Xonar DX; I have no plans to upgrade that unless for some reason it stops working
  • Not after anything that can get really loud, I just want quality (for reference, I NEVER have the volume dial on the Z-2300's controller past the 9 o'clock position, and its bass knob rarely further than "Noon"; this is with Windows and Xonar Control volume both at full)
  • Mostly to be used for videos/music (most genres)/some gaming interspersed

I have already (heavily) considered the Swan D1080MKII08, however I'm looking to see if there's anything better for the same or even less money. Thanks in advance for any help!
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Deep Blood
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post #2 of 38
Klipsch Promedia 2.1
    
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post #3 of 38
NHT SuperZero 2.0, Audioengine A2 or A5.
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post #4 of 38
I will second the recommendations for Klipsch Promedia 2.1 and Audioengine A5s. Both have tons of rave reviews all over the net. The Klipsch are discontinued now, but you may still find them new at best buy. There are lots up on ebay as well.

The swans you are considering are an excellent choice too. If you want to expand your budget you can start looking at some reference monitors like the KRK Rockit RP6. Any of these more powerful speakers you'll probably need to invest in stands or at least foam blocks to use them with. Depending on the acoustics of your setup of course, monitor speakers placed on a desk with a wall a few feet behind them is less than ideal.

Since you are just using an internal sound card without a power amp or receiver I avoided mentioning any passive speakers.
post #5 of 38
I would go with the Swans. I have heard KRK Rokit 8s and they were nice, but I would not at all call them a reference monitor. I wouldn't consider the Swans a reference monitor either, but I think they are of better quality than the KRK.
post #6 of 38
Swan D1080MKII08's have some the best mid-range performance available.

There's no a whole lot else in that budget available. The AudioEngine A5's are nice, or so I heard (haven't listened to them in person.) The M-Audio AV-40's are also good, but not up to what the Swan's can do.
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post #7 of 38
I agree on the Swans and Klipschs. The Klipschs are not discontinued btw, you can buy it directly from their site.
Edited by AzO - 3/6/11 at 6:18pm
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post #8 of 38
A5's or Swan's for sure. The AV40's are okayish I guess but the bass is poop and at low volume the non-powered speaker get's quieter than the powered one since it has no power source of its own.
post #9 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shiveron;12637369 
A5's or Swan's for sure. The AV40's are okayish I guess but the bass is poop and at low volume the non-powered speaker get's quieter than the powered one since it has no power source of its own.
AV40's are powered.

Also, yeah the Bass is a bit underpowered in them. Though it's not terrible. It's not like a lot of the PC Speaker setups where it's extremely muddy or distorted.

Though the "Bass Boost" switch doesn't do a whole lot for them.
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post #10 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tator Tot;12637401 
AV40's are powered.

Also, yeah the Bass is a bit underpowered in them. Though it's not terrible. It's not like a lot of the PC Speaker setups where it's extremely muddy or distorted.

Though the "Bass Boost" switch doesn't do a whole lot for them.

Correction. The right sattelite is powered. The left one runs off nothing but the speaker wire connecting it to the right which is why it gets oddly quiet at lower volume.
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