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Looking for some 5.1 speaker setup recommendations for PC

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I have been using the Z5500 speakers for over three years now and I love the sound quality it can reproduce. Now you must understand that I am not an audiophile but do have moderate experience with 5.1 speaker systems/packages. So I have been upgrading my PC slowly piece by piece and thought I would upgrade the surround system currently in place. When reading the following please keep in mind that I purchased the Z5500 package from amazon in 2008 for exactly £178.73 including delivery to my home address.

I started off by heading to Richer Sounds, a local audio/av shop and was advised to buy the following; Denon AVR 1713 - £260 Tannoy SFX 5.1 - £200

I was told the above would be "more than enough" for someone like me who has a basic PC setup and it is also future proof as speakers can be replaced and the system can be used as a home cinema system. I went ahead and purchased the latter for around £460 but was extremely disappointed with the sound quality - The bass produced was just not enough and felt overall the entire system was much less powerful than the existing system I had in place (Z5500).

The next day I made my way back to Richer Sounds and explained the entire situation and was then advised for better sound quality I should purchase bookshelf speakers for both the front and back with an active subwoofer. Again, I am not an audiophile but went ahead with the advice I received therefore purchased the following;

Denon AVR 1713 - £260 (The same one I brought the first time, just adding it here so you can see the total cost for each build) Cambridge Audio S30 x 2 Pairs - £259.90 Cambridge Audio S90 - £149.95

So this time around I spent around £670 and thought there is no way I could be disappointed, I mean surely for this sort of price the system must be at least three times as powerful and better sounding than the Z5500? Sadly not.. I plugged up the Cambridge Audio S30's into the Denon AV receiver and hoped for the best - Although the highs and mids sound incredible the subwoofer was still letting the entire system down! If I put the volume any higher than 75db the subwoofer would just start capping and dropping out. Needless to say I refunded this system and gave everything back to Richer Sounds.

I then spent a few days researching some good home cinema packages which led me to the next purchase, a Panasonic SC-BTT590EBK for £330 from amazon. The Panasonic looked promising with 1000 watts (peak) of power but the subwoofer just kept letting the entire system down therefore I started to give up..

I am currently using the Logitech Z906 from amazon for £229.90 which is reasonably priced considering how much I paid for the Z5500 four years ago. This system is a lot better than all the other setups I talked about but STILL does not beat the Z5500. A few differences I have observed between the Z906 and the Z5500. I am disappointed with this system, granted not as much as the others I have tried but still disappointed.

Personally I do not see myself as a "basshead" but after this whole experience I'm starting to think otherwise..

If anyone can advise on a kick ass system, feel free to leave a comment. The sort of budget I am trying to stick to at the moment is £300/£400 so please feel free to recommend some good setups.
post #2 of 8
Sounds like the Cambridge S30s worked for you, but you just needed a better sub.

Sub performance is tied to room size and other factors. Since the subwoofer doesn't need to be matched with the speakers, why not go with the S30s and then get a bigger, more powerful sub?
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Sounds like the Cambridge S30s worked for you, but you just needed a better sub.
Sub performance is tied to room size and other factors. Since the subwoofer doesn't need to be matched with the speakers, why not go with the S30s and then get a bigger, more powerful sub?

I really appreciate your quick reply.

The Cambridge S30s did work but there is an issue with that setup. If I was to get a bigger sub the cost goes up exponentially to nearly £800, I can't find any speaker systems with a powerful sub that are available in the UK and within my budget.

I am really looking for a speaker package with a control dock or something similar included as I don't feel I need an AV receiver just for my computer in the room.
Edited by umarsa - 12/18/12 at 11:21am
post #4 of 8
Well, most of us don't buy a speaker system with a sub. There's no reason to match the sub with the speaker brand/model.

So get the speakers you like, then pick out the sub separately. Find a good 10" sub that has more output than the Cambridge one.
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Well, most of us don't buy a speaker system with a sub. There's no reason to match the sub with the speaker brand/model.
So get the speakers you like, then pick out the sub separately. Find a good 10" sub that has more output than the Cambridge one.

If you have any suggestions for 10" subs I would appreciate it.

The main issue I am having at the moment is that most of these packages cost a lot more than my intended budget.
post #6 of 8
Unfortunately, I don't know the best value subs in Europe. The models and the pricing is different from here.
post #7 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by umarsa View Post

If you have any suggestions for 10" subs I would appreciate it.
The main issue I am having at the moment is that most of these packages cost a lot more than my intended budget.

Check out the S-10 or PS-10 from Outdoor Speaker Depot. I believe Jim Wilson did a review on one of them in his subwoofer thread here early in the year.

Here's the link to the review: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1385116/official-osd-audio-subwoofer-owners-thread

- Brennan, OSD Audio
Edited by Brennan.OSD - 12/18/12 at 1:53pm
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brennan.OSD View Post

Check out the S-10 or PS-10 from Outdoor Speaker Depot. I believe Jim Wilson did a review on one of them in his subwoofer thread here early in the year.
Here's the link to the review: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1385116/official-osd-audio-subwoofer-owners-thread
- Brennan, OSD Audio

I'm really looking for something a little more powerful - the sub I have at the moment is 10" 188w rms, thanks though.
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