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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all! I want to buy a set of speakers that finally make me go "wow, that sounds amazing". Right now I'm using Micca MB42x along with a Lepai LP-2020 amp, and to put it bluntly, they suck. There's no low end, they don't get me excited about music, etc. I listen to a lot of music and I want something that really blows me away and will hold me over for a long time, so I'm looking for some recommendations. Anyways:


What is your budget? $1000. I can go up a little if there's something really special close to my price range.


What are you looking for? Powered speakers.


How will you typically be using the gear? Near-field. I'll be sitting about 1.5 - 2 feet away from the speakers 95% of the time. Also they will be on a desk pretty much slammed against the wall, so rear firing ports are all but out of the question.


What gear do you own? I currently own the Micca MB42x and a Lepai LP-2020, and like I said before, I'd like to completely replace these.


What do you intend on using for a source? These will be fed by the audio output of a mac mini.


What material will you be using your gear for? I listen to a lot of metal, punk, and classic rock.


Are you willing to buy used? Yes.


So far I've looked at the Adam A7X Monitors, and the Paradigm A2. I know these are two completely different speakers, but again, I have no idea what I'm looking for here, studio monitors or near-field speakers? I know that monitors are more for accurate sound reproduction, but I'm assuming they could also work here, or will they make my music sound worse by both not hyping the sound and exposing flaws? I just want something that blows me away and sounds great.


Thanks in advance for all of your help!
 

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The Adam A7X are very nice, but if I am not mistaken, a pair will set you back more than $1k. Very nice speakers though. I would also be looking at Mackie HR series, these are actually THX pm3 certified: The HR624 and the HR 824 . Emotiva's Stealth monitors look pretty good too, very nice measurements. You might look at the mid level JBL LSRs with room correction . That's a very handy feature to have if you aren't hooking these speakers up to any processor that has room compensation correction. You can't lose with any of those speakers. If you have a Guitar Center or any other pro-audio store near you, call them up and ask if they have any monitors on demo. If so, go there and check them out.


If you are not using a subwoofer, I would get some monitors with as much extension as can be had, so 8" woofers basically. Rear ports do not need a lot of room, an inch or two would be fine. Also any speaker that makes recordings sound better by masking detail is inherently a poor speaker. Get the best speakers that you can and accept the recordings for what they are. Music can still be enjoyed even though there is a tape loop click or vinyl pop or some background rumble. The performance is what counts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The A7X's will set me back more than $1k, but I'm willing to spend it if it's worth it. The LSR4326's also interest me, but do you have any personal experience with them? I want to know if the room correction software actually works, i.e. helps my untreated bedroom sound better. Essentially, I am not afraid to go over my $1000 budget here, but I want to buy these speakers once and only once, and have them sound amazing and not require me to upgrade again in the future.
 

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I think the PSB Alpha PS-1 powered speakers are excellent, and only $300!


You will need a subwoofer with any desktop speakers.


You don't get much bass anyway, with them positioned that way.


The Polk PSW505 is only $249 now from Newegg.


That combination should sound very good.


Since desktop speakers have no bass to speak of anyway, port configuration makes no real difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I do not mean to be offensive, but the PSB Alpha PS-1's seem like entry level stuff, and I know for a fact that the Polk PSW505 is entry level because I have listened to one in my living room setup. I want to purchase a really nice set of speakers that blow me away, and I'm not afraid of spending money to get something I'm actually happy with.
 

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If you want good dynamic sound for music, you need to invest in new speakers and a sub woofer. Something like the SVS SB-1000 is a good choice. I would go for a pair of the new Emotiva Airmotiv 5s , and then add that SVS sub.
 

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The Alpha PS1 are anything but entry-level.


The Audioengine 2 speakers are also very good.


The PSW505 is limited, but only in the sense that it is not going to work well in a very large room at high volumes.


I have over $30,000 in my main stereo system, but the Audioengine A2 speakers and a relatively low-powered 12-inch sub are all I need for my computer setup for very nice sound.


Sitting so close one does not need a lot of power, so you don't need a very powerful subwoofer or speakers.


If you want something better than the PSB Alpha PS1, I think the next step up would be the Dynaudio Focus 110, but now you are talking $1600 or so.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman  /t/1525376/powered-near-field-monitor-recommendations-1000-ish-budget#post_24559508


The Alpha PS1 are anything but entry-level.


The Audioengine 2 speakers are also very good.


The PSW505 is limited, but only in the sense that it is not going to work well in a very large room at high volumes.


I have over $30,000 in my main stereo system, but the Audioengine A2 speakers and a relatively low-powered 12-inch sub are all I need for my computer setup for very nice sound.


Sitting so close one does not need a lot of power, so you don't need a very powerful subwoofer or speakers.

I think he can do better though, the PSW505 is a good budget HT sub, but it is boomy and not very articulate. In my opinion the SVS SB/PB-1000 are the starting points for good bass.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20  /t/1525376/powered-near-field-monitor-recommendations-1000-ish-budget#post_24559435


The A7X's will set me back more than $1k, but I'm willing to spend it if it's worth it. The LSR4326's also interest me, but do you have any personal experience with them? I want to know if the room correction software actually works, i.e. helps my untreated bedroom sound better. Essentially, I am not afraid to go over my $1000 budget here, but I want to buy these speakers once and only once, and have them sound amazing and not require me to upgrade again in the future.

I haven't heard the LSR4326s, but I have heard other LSRs and they have always been excellent. I felt that the previous LSR2328s were nearly as good as the Adam A7s in some respects when I demoed them, and those 2328s were half the price of the Adams. One nice thing about the 4326s is the room correction processing, this can be a big benefit when speakers are placed on a desktop. Typically when speakers are placed on a desktop, the acoustic reflection from the desktop itself creates a upper bass peak that can be obnoxious. The kind of EQ that the JBL LSRs have on board should go a long way to correcting this. You might also think about desktop speaker stands like these , that will help as well I am certain. If you look at studio setups, they almost always have their monitors raised off of any surface, so there will be less acoustic reflection and more accurate sound. Honestly between the Adams and the JBL LSRs, there is no wrong choice.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon  /t/1525376/powered-near-field-monitor-recommendations-1000-ish-budget#post_24559516


I think he can do better though, the PSW505 is a good budget HT sub, but it is boomy and not very articulate. In my opinion the SVS SB/PB-1000 are the starting points for good bass.

Since the budget is $1000, I would probably go with the PSB Alpha PS1 speakers for $300, and the NHT B10D subwoofer for $600.


I use the NHT B12D in my big system, and I chose it because it is a sealed design with very tight bass and lots of power in a smallish package (a 14" cube). Space is a bit tight where I have that system, so a huge box is out.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman  /t/1525376/powered-near-field-monitor-recommendations-1000-ish-budget#post_24559535


Since the budget is $1000, I would probably go with the PSB Alpha PS1 speakers for $300, and the NHT B10D subwoofer for $600.


I use the NHT B12D in my big system, and I chose it because it is a sealed design with very tight bass and lots of power in a smallish package (a 14" cube). Space is a bit tight where I have that system, so a huge box is out.

Yeah that is another option, but the SB-1000 is still a better performer in my opinion. It wil have a higher output with the bigger driver, and dig deeper. It is also a sealed sub with a small footprint.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I should clarify: the budget is around $1000. I can go higher if it's really worth it, maybe up to around $1500-$2000, but spending $300 on speakers and $600 on a subwoofer doesn't make sense to me; shouldn't the speakers cost more?
 

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Do you have a Guitar Center local to you? They have many different studio monitors set-up to listen to. I would focus the majority of your budget on Monitors that impress your ears. Than look to adding a subwoofer in the future if you feel you need more bass
 

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Emotiva Airmotiv 5s IF you can manage to place them 8" to 12" from the back wall. I doubt you would even need a subwoofer for just music. I only use my SB-1000 when I'm checking out my BD rips of movies before putting them on the NAS to pipe to my main system.


The Adam A5x or A7x are decent as well but I think the ports being on the front are ugly.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20  /t/1525376/powered-near-field-monitor-recommendations-1000-ish-budget#post_24559589


I should clarify: the budget is around $1000. I can go higher if it's really worth it, maybe up to around $1500-$2000, but spending $300 on speakers and $600 on a subwoofer doesn't make sense to me; shouldn't the speakers cost more?

Generally the sub is the most expensive single speaker in your setup, and it should be. I would also look at the SVS SB-2000, it just came out and is fantastic and very accurate. Honestly if you really want a good speaker, I would look at going with a passive bookshelf and a receiver. You will gain things like room correction, bass management, and have expansion options for the future. I ditched some Mackies for my NHT Super Zeros, they are more accurate and refined than the monitors, and I think you would be very happy with something like the Absolute Zero (the bigger brother). They measure flatter than most studio monitors in your price range, and are sealed so you can put them anywhere.
 

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I haven't compared these, but I have had Adam A7s, and they were fantastic. Very accurate and great sound top to bottom of their range.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20  /t/1525376/powered-near-field-monitor-recommendations-1000-ish-budget#post_24559589


I should clarify: the budget is around $1000. I can go higher if it's really worth it, maybe up to around $1500-$2000, but spending $300 on speakers and $600 on a subwoofer doesn't make sense to me; shouldn't the speakers cost more?

The speakers don't have to be very powerful for nearfield use, which makes them less expensive to make. The PSB speakers ARE very good, in any case.


The subwoofer needs to be much larger and have a very powerful amplifier; it will cost more.


If you want more of everything, the Dynaudio 110 powered speakers are the ones to get, but I think they run $1500 or so.


Spend $600 for the NHT B10D subwoofer, and that would perhaps be what you want, and are willing to spend $2100 or so.


It would certainly be excellent.


Oh....I almost forgot the Focal CMS40; I think they go for around $900 per pair (see the Dedicated Audio website for detailed info). Those and the sub would be $1500.
 

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Another option would be passive speakers plus a small footprint amplifier. Definitive Technology Studio Monitor 350 ( typically $200 to $300 a pair ) plus an Emotiva Mini-x a-100 amplifier ( 50 watts x 2 ) for $220. The footprint for the SM350 is about 7" x 10" and the mini-x is 9" x 15". Not as simple as powered monitors but certainly under your $1000 budget.
 

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If you doubt the quality of the PSB speakers, I suggest that you order them online from one of the companies that give you a 30-day return privilege.


I think you will like them, and all you have to lose is the cost of return shipping.


There is no substitute for an actual trial in your setting.


You could also try them with the PSW505, which you already have, but you will probably want something better.
 
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