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Recommendations: Hi-fi system for music (budget <$500)


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#1 of 10 OFFLINE   mambo12

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Posted May 03 2013 - 11:27 PM

My music is mainly mp3 ripped from my CDs. Have been using computer speakers all my life but want to take the plunge into hi-fi. Appreciate some recommendations particularly with speakers.

Do surround speakers work for music?

Which speakers should I consider for my budget? I was looking at the following:
q acoustics 2020i
boston acoustics A26

Then I read about the good speakers systems like:

B&W MT-60
KEF 3005

And I got all confused. What should I be looking for to get best music appreciation? I listen to mainly pop, rock and jazz. Hope you guys can help me start this journey :)



#2 of 10 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted May 05 2013 - 08:37 AM

There is no such thing as "surround speaker".

 

That is marketing crap.

 

Any of the four speakers you chose are good choices...except.

 

When you move up to better audio equipment, the worse MP3 sounds.



#3 of 10 OFFLINE   Glen B2

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Posted May 05 2013 - 02:55 PM

A decent hi-fi system on a budget of less than $500 is having champagne taste on a beer budget.  Even if you bought all used components, $500.00 will only get you so much.  My solid recommendation on amplification would be a pair of Audiosource AMP 100s run in bridged mode supplying 150W @ 8 ohms each.  These can be found for less than $200/pair, leaving you $300 to spend on speakers.  You won't find that kind of power versus performance anywhere else right now for that kind of money.  I own several amps in the 200W -300W range, and don't care to get them scratched or dinged, so I run a stack of bridged AMP100s driving the speakers in my bi-amped party system.  The AMP100s sound great and run only warm after many hours.  For speakers, you should be able to find a used pair of Paradigm Mini-Monitors in the $250-$300 range, or  new pair of Axiom M3 V3's for $378.  The Axioms are direct from the manufacturer, with a 30-day in-home trial.

 

http://www.axiomaudi...kshelf-speakers

 

AMP100 inside shots:

 

Audio_100_01.jpg

 

Amp-100_01.jpg

 

Amp-100_03.jpg

 

Amp-100_02.jpg


Edited by Glen B2, May 05 2013 - 03:00 PM.

Main system: Denon DP-59L, AudioTechnica AT33EV, Marantz Reference SA-11S2, Classé CP-50, Classé CA-300, Classé DR-10, PSB Stratus Gold is, DIY Balanced AC Power Conditioner, Classé RC-1, Acoustic Zen Cables, Oyaide and Furutech AC receptacles and power connectors, HiFi Tuning Supreme fuses, 20A isolated ground dedicated line.


#4 of 10 OFFLINE   mambo12

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Posted May 05 2013 - 03:40 PM

Tks glen. I do understand that my budget will not get me very far. But it is a start ain't it?

 

So you are saying that the first things i should buy is a pair of amps to drive each speaker? But why can't a single amp be sufficient? I've no idea what you meant about running in bridged mode, etc....

 

And about the speakers you recommended, how do they compare with the 2020i and A26?

 

Tks.



#5 of 10 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted May 05 2013 - 04:03 PM

Unless you are trying to "rock the house"...40wpc should be plenty. 99% of people can't tell the difference between 40wpc and 80wpc.



#6 of 10 OFFLINE   mambo12

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Posted May 05 2013 - 04:51 PM

how do powered speakers like the Audioengine A5+ compare?

 

and if I want to use the Boston Acoustics A26 instead, will it be sufficient to use the dragonfly DAC connected to the speaker? Or will I still need to an amp connected to the DAC?



#7 of 10 OFFLINE   Glen B2

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Posted May 05 2013 - 05:36 PM

My point was the pair of AMP100s will provide enough undistorted  power for future system growth, should you upgrade to better speakers that have lower sensitivity, and can't be beat at the price.  Bridging is a method where two channels of a stereo amp are operated as a single channel of greater power (usually 3 or more times the total stereo power).  Two amps operated in such fashion are needed for stereo. You can run a single AMP 100 if 50W per channel is enough for  you.  More power gives you greater flexibility in speaker choices.  Lower power restricts you to high sensitivity speakers, especially if you like to play your music loud and/or have a large space.   I don't know how the Axioms compare to the ones you've listed.  I am just suggesting an excellent speaker for the money that I think will paid well with an inexpensive amp..  Paradigm Mini-Monitors are also a very good speaker that can be found used in the $250-$300 range.

Edited by Glen B2, May 05 2013 - 06:14 PM.

Main system: Denon DP-59L, AudioTechnica AT33EV, Marantz Reference SA-11S2, Classé CP-50, Classé CA-300, Classé DR-10, PSB Stratus Gold is, DIY Balanced AC Power Conditioner, Classé RC-1, Acoustic Zen Cables, Oyaide and Furutech AC receptacles and power connectors, HiFi Tuning Supreme fuses, 20A isolated ground dedicated line.


#8 of 10 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted May 05 2013 - 05:50 PM

This would be plenty...

http://www.amazon.co...ywords=onkyo tx

 

And it isn't "hundreds of dollars"...


Edited by schan1269, May 05 2013 - 05:50 PM.


#9 of 10 OFFLINE   mambo12

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Posted May 05 2013 - 07:43 PM

What are your views on powered speakers? Do they perform worse than passive ones?



#10 of 10 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted May 05 2013 - 08:31 PM

What are your views on powered speakers?
They serve a purpose.

Do they perform worse than passive ones?
Why would they?


Point is...

Buy a powered speakers if you want to.
Buy an amp/receiver and speakers.

Both are the correct answer.




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