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I do believe my speakers just died.

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What do you use for your PC gaming?

2.1 or stereo
14
54%
4.1
1
4%
5.1
3
12%
7.1
2
8%
Fancy-schmancy home theater system for rich people
0
No votes
Headphones
6
23%
Other
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 26

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I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Blackhawk » Tue May 29, 2018 3:50 pm

I had a Logitech 5.1 set (Z506.) Last night I went to bed and got woken up by the speakers popping - loudly. The PC was off, so I figured a wire had just worked its way loose. This morning I got up and spent an hour installing and reinstalling drivers, and another crawling around under my desk.

Eventually, I just disconnected everything except the popping speaker and the subwoofer (which the speakers plug into.) With nothing but the power cord and one speaker, the popping continued. It wasn't hooked to the PC, and the wires were isolated from everything else. Wiggling the wires didn't increase or decrease the popping (so probably not a short.) Volume knob twisting didn't solve it. I've had the speakers since 2011, so that isn't too bad for a $100 set, I suppose.

So it looks like I need new speakers. Since I bought these, it seems like the market has changed. Very few recommended sets are surround anymore, and decent quality 5.1/7.1 sets are much, much more expensive than they were before. I've had 5.1 speakers for probably 17 years, but it looks like I may have to drop down to 2.1 or stereo to get anything both decent and affordable. I'll just have to game with my headphones more (which I don't like doing - they don't fit comfortably over my glasses, and it gets really, really hot since my AC isn't all that great - I crank it to 70, the house stays 79.)

I was surprised at how many gaming speaker recommendations are 2.1. Surround always used to be the go-to. Out of curiousity, what's everyone else using?
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by wonderpug » Tue May 29, 2018 4:15 pm

My Logitech 5.1 system died a year or two ago, and I was also surprised to see how much people were recommending 2-speaker systems. I bought this M-Audio speaker pair and I've been super happy with them.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Cylus Maxii » Tue May 29, 2018 4:19 pm

I use Pioneer SP-BS22-LR Andrew Jones Designed Bookshelf Loudspeakers, wired directly to my Soundblaster X-7 (which has an amp in it.)

I was originally going to just buy a stereo amp for under $100, but then found out that the X-7 would probably drive them and I didn't need it. It works great so far.

Here is the article that put me onto those speakers [H]ardOCP. I'm pretty sure I picked them up for about $90.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Rumpy » Tue May 29, 2018 4:39 pm

I just use a pair of Bose Companion 2's. Before that, I had an Altec-Lansing 2.1 system. It had great sound without it being overly bassy, and when it came time to replacing it, I tried out another Altec-Lansing system which had been highly rated, but felt it was way too heavy on the bass and didn't feel comfortable with it, so back to the store that went and decided to go with the Bose speakers, which in my opinion have the best balance for the price and were the only ones I tried that sounded reasonably close to what I previously had.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Exodor » Tue May 29, 2018 4:50 pm

I've got a set of 2.1 Logitech Z4s that I really like - I appreciate having the volume control and headphone jacks on a separate controller. Apparently they're no longer made although you can get a set on Amazon for a mere $499.99

:shock: Maybe I should sell mine. :mrgreen:


Amazon claims the replacement model is the z523 but those have the volume and headphone jack on the speaker. I prefer the Z4s with a control unit and the speakers hung on the wall.

It looks like the z533 is more like what I would want although the speakers don't look wall-mountable.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by coopasonic » Tue May 29, 2018 4:53 pm

I use cheap-ass amazon basics stereo speakers. They are fine for my needs. I have 7.1 up in my media room for movies and console gaming, but I am just as happy with the tiny stereo speakers on the PC.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Blackhawk » Tue May 29, 2018 6:12 pm

I also tried replacing the popping speaker with another one, but it popped too, which means that the problem is in the subwoofer/control chip/whatever. And since it is in the front left, I can't just move a rear speaker up and use it as a 2.1.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by hitbyambulance » Tue May 29, 2018 9:22 pm

still using the Altec-Lansing ADA885 system i got on clearance back in 2006 (crazy cheap, paid like $30 + $35 s/h). the SPDIF connection started making sporadic noises/interference sounds a few years back, so i've switched everything over to the analog connectors. i've been running it in 2.1 mode all this time.

when these die, i'm moving to a real component stereo speaker setup. or i'll try fixing them.. can't be that hard.

i have an old Creative 4.1 setup (ca.1999-2000) i could send to you for shipping if you're interested. some of the tripods are cracked, but it still works.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Daehawk » Tue May 29, 2018 9:44 pm

I use headphones because my wife watches tv behind me. Ive used about all types though. 2 speakers. 2.1 that are 2 speakers and a subwoofer, 4.1 and now back to 2.1 . But I barely get to use them. Ive used headphones for about 8 years or so.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by MonkeyFinger » Wed May 30, 2018 9:17 am

I've got a very old Creative 7.1 system that, when I used it in that capacity years ago, was quite glorious. I'm still using it but where it sits now I ended up cutting it back to basically a 3.1 system, with the back four speakers back in the box. And if I really need to hear something nowadays, I use my headphones.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Blackhawk » Wed May 30, 2018 10:02 am

hitbyambulance wrote:
Tue May 29, 2018 9:22 pm


i have an old Creative 4.1 setup (ca.1999-2000) i could send to you for shipping if you're interested. some of the tripods are cracked, but it still works.
Thanks for the offer! I've got probably a month before I'll know what my spending options are. I've got an unknown amount coming in, and some huge expenses this month have me starting out at a negative number. It could be enough to solve the problem outright, or it could be too little to even pay shipping. I won't know for a while yet.

In the meantime, I'll just game with my headphones. I have a nice enough set that it isn't a bad experience, it's just a little uncomfortable to do long-term.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Lassr » Wed May 30, 2018 4:26 pm

bought these off Amazon back in 2009 and they are still going strong.
Logitech
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Carpet_pissr » Wed May 30, 2018 4:35 pm

hitbyambulance wrote:still using the Altec-Lansing ADA885 system i got on clearance back in 2006 (crazy cheap, paid like $30 + $35 s/h). the SPDIF connection started making sporadic noises/interference sounds a few years back, so i've switched everything over to the analog connectors. i've been running it in 2.1 mode all this time.
Ha! I bought that same deal. I think it was Woot!, right? Just recently spray painted mine a satin black as I got tired of looking at the putty tan color after all these years. They look new now...should have painted them years ago.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Hamlet3145 » Wed May 30, 2018 5:49 pm

I turned into a living room couch PC gamer so I just run my HDMI into my old Onkyo 5.1 system.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by wonderpug » Wed May 30, 2018 7:36 pm

This seems like a good enough time as any to remind everyone that some Logitech speakers have fake tweeters:
Image

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Blackhawk » Wed May 30, 2018 8:00 pm

Why am I not surprised?

I've had some great Logitech products over the years, but I've also had more than a few that were awful.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Daehawk » Wed May 30, 2018 8:59 pm

Creative 4.1 setup (ca.1999-2000)
I had those! I walked in a local computer repair store once...those used to be a thing...and saw those set up and playing. I knew I had to have some. Took me a couple years but I got them. Kept tripping on those back stands so packed the backs away a while. Got some taller metal stands off WOOT once and put them back out. I must have used them until around 2005.
Last edited by Daehawk on Thu May 31, 2018 12:27 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Blackhawk » Thu May 31, 2018 12:09 am

Back around 2001 I had a 4.1 set from Cambridge Soundworks (which was owned by Creative) that may have been the same set. Beige, small, and square, plastic tripod legs for the rear speakers.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Daehawk » Thu May 31, 2018 12:28 am

Yup thats them.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Montag » Thu May 31, 2018 8:40 am

Still using my Logitech Z 560, 4.1 speakers and still happy with them.
words

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Daehawk » Thu May 31, 2018 9:24 am

I LOVED my Z-560s. Sounded amazing. but the woofer rotted or something. Bought a replacement pair somewhere..was it here at OO?...anyways that sub started cutting in and out or rattling. I was using headphones by then so was a moot point. But back in the 2000s those Z-560s were amazing.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Kraken » Thu Aug 16, 2018 2:55 pm

Today I fired up my PC after having been gone for several days and the left speaker promptly blew out. I'd been using Klipsch THX 2.1's that someone gifted me a few years back, so even though they were very good speakers they hadn't cost me anything. They're no longer in production, but I found a replacement satellite on amazon for $50. Before shelling out for that I thought I should make sure it wasn't a wiring problem, so I moved my desk away from the wall to free up the wires, vacuumed up several years worth of gritty dust, and crawled under the desk to swap some wires around. While doing all that I somehow snapped off the round multi-pin plug that goes into the subwoofer.

Great. Now I needed a satellite speaker AND a new wiring harness. For that money I could just about get a whole new set of speakers (as evidenced by some of the recommendations in this very thread); it was time to trash those trusty old Klipsches. Having just bought a new PC and two new games, I don't have the wherewithal to replace them right away. But I DO have a little old pair of Labtec Better-Than-Nothings (not their real name). They're a major downgrade, but at least I still have acceptable sound, and it's only a temporary situation.

This is why we never throw anything away. Well, except those broken Klipsches.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Daehawk » Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:51 pm

I use headphones but keep speakers for sharing with my wife or if she is in the shower then I share with the neighbors. A few years back when I had some money from the selling of my dad's home I bought a set of lipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX. I always heard how great they are and I no longer need speakers much so 2.1 is fine. The yare ok but I think they are overpriced. They sound fine but not great to me. The old Logitechs blew them away. I would say they are no better than the old Cambridge Soundworks. But they are nice enough for what little I use them.

https://www.amazon.com/Klipsch-ProMedia ... B000062VUO

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Kraken » Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:28 am

Wife has kindly offered to buy me new PC speakers for my birthday, so of course I have to shop for them. Thought I'd see if anyone has updated recommendations for a 2.1 system since this thread went dormant. My budget is up to $100. There are so...many...choices.

I have a small office, so I don't need 360-degree room-filling wall-rattling sound. Each satellite speaker will be on a shelf no more than 4-5' away from my ears. They'll be used for gaming and listening to music, very seldom at high volume. I don't even necessarily need a subwoofer if the satellites have nice, rich bass. For example, these Bose Companion 2 Series III caught my eye.

Right now I'm leaning toward the Logitech Z523s that were linked above.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Anonymous Bosch » Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:40 pm

Kraken wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:28 am
Wife has kindly offered to buy me new PC speakers for my birthday, so of course I have to shop for them. Thought I'd see if anyone has updated recommendations for a 2.1 system since this thread went dormant. My budget is up to $100. There are so...many...choices.

I have a small office, so I don't need 360-degree room-filling wall-rattling sound. Each satellite speaker will be on a shelf no more than 4-5' away from my ears. They'll be used for gaming and listening to music, very seldom at high volume. I don't even necessarily need a subwoofer if the satellites have nice, rich bass. For example, these Bose Companion 2 Series III caught my eye.

Right now I'm leaning toward the Logitech Z523s that were linked above.
Since you don't require room-filling, wall-rattling sound and bass, I'd go with The Wirecutter's recommendation for best computer speakers, namely the Mackie CR3 studio monitors, available from Amazon for $99:
The Wirecutter wrote:After spending more than 70 hours researching 98 active computer-speaker systems and having a blind listening panel evaluate 11 of them, we’ve found that the Mackie CR3 are the best computer speakers for most people. They have all the inputs you’ll need, along with easy-to-use controls, and offer good sound quality for their price.

Enlarge Image

There are better-sounding speakers that cost much more, and cheaper speakers that sound decent as well, but the Mackie CR3 have the right blend of sound quality and user-friendliness. Their sound profile favors midrange and vocals, but beats most others in the under-$100 price range. We also like that they have a convenient front aux input that’s great for plugging in phones temporarily, and an easily accessible volume knob on the front that lets you adjust output levels without fumbling for a remote or having to access the back panel.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by pr0ner » Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:14 pm

I'm still using these Altec Lansing ACS-45.1 speakers from 1998 (!!!).
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Blackhawk » Tue Apr 09, 2019 3:37 pm

At some point after this, I bought a new set of speakers. Decent ones, too. Three months later, Michelle and the kids moved in full-time, and I haven't used them since. A month ago I actually unplugged them for something and haven't bothered to plug them back in. I'm never the only one home, so it's headphones full-time for me.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by hitbyambulance » Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:10 pm

troll through craigslist and get second-hand bookshelf speakers. people are getting rid of decent audio equipment like crazy now. i picked up a pair of Infinity IL-40 floorstanding speakers - MSRP in 2001: $999 - for $20 last year.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Kraken » Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:24 pm

pr0ner wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:14 pm
I'm still using these Altec Lansing ACS-45.1 speakers from 1998 (!!!).
45.1 is more speakers than I can handle. :wink:

I like the look of those Mackies and the Wirecutter recommendation is valuable. Several Amazon reviews saying that they crapped out after a year concern me, though.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by hitbyambulance » Tue Apr 09, 2019 5:57 pm

which is why i recommend standard 'audio' speakers rather than PC ones - the quality and reliability is better. i have a set of Altec-Lansing ADA885s for PC, but the digital input died about six years after i got them (at least the analog connection is still good).

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Anonymous Bosch » Tue Apr 09, 2019 7:00 pm

Kraken wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:24 pm
pr0ner wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:14 pm
I'm still using these Altec Lansing ACS-45.1 speakers from 1998 (!!!).
45.1 is more speakers than I can handle. :wink:

I like the look of those Mackies and the Wirecutter recommendation is valuable. Several Amazon reviews saying that they crapped out after a year concern me, though.
Yeah, that is somewhat disconcerting.

Another set I would strongly consider are the Edifier R1280T Powered Bookshelf Speakers, which are $99.99 on Amazon:

Enlarge Image

The Edifier speakers include a remote as well as a two-year warranty, which speaks to their build quality.

But in terms of getting the absolute best bang for your buck, you would be better off following Hitbyambulance's suggestion and instead pairing a decent pair of regular bookshelf speakers along with a suitable amp. A setup like that will definitely outperform any $100 pair of computer speakers, and even many of the more expensive models.

Here's a simple example that comes close to accommodating your budget:
Just connect the amp directly to the onboard audio of your mobo/sound card via RCA cables and the speakers to the amp, and you should be good to go.
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Kraken » Tue Apr 09, 2019 8:01 pm

Anonymous Bosch wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 7:00 pm
Just connect the amp directly to the onboard audio of your mobo/sound card via RCA cables and the speakers to the amp, and you should be good to go.
What am I, an electrical engineer? How does one do that? My sound card only has line in, line out, and mic in. What are those, 3.5mm jacks? Would an adapter cable solve that?

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Anonymous Bosch » Tue Apr 09, 2019 9:11 pm

Kraken wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 8:01 pm
Anonymous Bosch wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 7:00 pm
Just connect the amp directly to the onboard audio of your mobo/sound card via RCA cables and the speakers to the amp, and you should be good to go.
What am I, an electrical engineer? How does one do that? My sound card only has line in, line out, and mic in. What are those, 3.5mm jacks? Would an adapter cable solve that?
A simple 3.5mm Stereo Male to 2 RCA Male cable will do the trick (e.g. this Monoprice cable for $3.39 + shipping, or you can get it with Amazon Prime for $6.38). The 3.5mm jack would go into the "Line Out" port of your sound card/mobo, and the two RCA jacks would go into the "Audio in" ports on the amp. Then you just connect the speakers to the amp using ordinary speaker wire and you're done. And you needn't get too fancy with speaker wire, either -- you can always use some OFC (oxygen-free copper) lamp cord from a local hardware store in a pinch.
"Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority. It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters." -- Daniel Webster

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Kraken » Tue Apr 09, 2019 9:56 pm

Okay, I'm going to sleep on that idea. With the cables it's going to top $120, but I'm sure Wife won't care about an extra $20. She never does. :) Really comes down to whether I want the simplicity of powered computer speakers or the better value of passive speakers + amp. I'm not an audiophile and I'm only filling a tiny room, so any of those will sound dramatically better than the cheap Labtecs I've been using since last August. I'm a little surprised that I ruled out a 2.1 set so quickly...I really just want good rich bass, so I don't need a subwoofer that will rattle the house.

If I go with computer speakers, it's between the Bose that I linked or the Edifiers. Too bad about the reviews saying the Mackies are unreliable; I like their design.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by pr0ner » Wed Apr 10, 2019 1:08 pm

Kraken wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:24 pm
pr0ner wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:14 pm
I'm still using these Altec Lansing ACS-45.1 speakers from 1998 (!!!).
45.1 is more speakers than I can handle. :wink:
:clap:
Hodor.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Rumpy » Sat Apr 13, 2019 4:16 pm

Kraken wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:28 am
Bose Companion 2 Series III
FWIW, I have a pair of Companion 2's that I've had for years after I ditched my subwoofer system. I know Bose gets a bad rap, but honestly I think they're great bang for the buck and nothing I looked at really came close in terms of what you get for the price and quality. I actually returned a Logitech 2.1 system in favor of these.
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Kraken
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Kraken » Sat Apr 13, 2019 7:08 pm

Rumpy wrote:
Sat Apr 13, 2019 4:16 pm
Kraken wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:28 am
Bose Companion 2 Series III
FWIW, I have a pair of Companion 2's that I've had for years after I ditched my subwoofer system. I know Bose gets a bad rap, but honestly I think they're great bang for the buck and nothing I looked at really came close in terms of what you get for the price and quality. I actually returned a Logitech 2.1 system in favor of these.
Thanks for weighing in. I hate making decisions (even with somebody else's money), so I'm still avoiding it. Bose being a local company appeals to me, and I've been happy with their speakers in my last two cars. The Amazon reviews on the Companion 2s are quite positive. I should just stop dithering and buy something. Probably those.

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Z-Corn
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Z-Corn » Sat Apr 13, 2019 8:29 pm

Kraken wrote:
Sat Apr 13, 2019 7:08 pm
Bose being a local company appeals to me, and I've been happy with their speakers in my last two cars.
My friend who just moved to Lexington works at Bose. I can see if they have a local scratch and dent store or something...

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Kraken
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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Kraken » Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:08 pm

I'm going to read some more reviews and stop dithering tomorrow. Amazon reviews can only take one so far, so personal recommendations like Rumpy's count for a lot. Yes, I realize I am overthinking this. It's something I often do.

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Re: I do believe my speakers just died.

Post by Kraken » Wed Apr 17, 2019 6:57 pm

Thanks to a deep discount that was too good to pass up, I went with the Bose Companions. They sound great, especially after using the tinny Labtechs for nearly a year. They sound clean and I can turn them up to 11 with no distortion whatsoever; they have no hum or crackle when resting. There's no bass/treble control, but I can fiddle with that through the Realtek control panel -- after playing around with sliders and filters and whatnot, the default balance sounds best (well, maybe I turned up the bass just a smidge). If I'd wanted deep booming bass I would've gone with 2.1 speakers. These are very good 2.0s and I hope they will last a good number of years.

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