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ByTe-SiZe

What speakers to get?

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Hi everyone... looking for advice on what speakers to get for my iBook. We're looking at a budget between $100-$200. So far, I've mainly been looking at HK Soundsticks II, JBL Creature II, and JBL Encounter 2.1... would anyone recommend any of these or does anyone have any other favorites? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!

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CREATURE II! All the way dude.

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Just about any of the aftermarket speaker system will make a HUGE difference, my parents bought me an Altec Lansing system several Christmas' ago and I love it. I'm sure any of those you listed will work just great.

 

roog

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I'm using some 5.1 Dell speakers I picked up at woot.com for $35.00 Woot has just one product per day so it is not availiable right now. But about once a month they have a mystery speaker box which are these.

 

L958806.jpg

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I use the Cambridge Soundworks "FPS 2000 Digital." That means "Four Point Surround," and it is 4 speakers with a front and back in/output so you can have surround if anything has a front and back minijack (your normal headphone jack). Otherwise, pick up a $5 splitter from Radioshack (Or you can get the iSplitter® for an extra $15) so you can run all four speakers at once. It has a large subwoofer that produces good quality bass. I sometimes use it as a 4 speaker (basically 2 giant speakers) plus a subwoofer on my computer if I need VOLUME, but I usually have the back connected to the iPod and front connected to the computer for quick/easy games->music conversion, or no CPU-strain background music while using games on the computer... basically it can be 2 sets, or one good set.

 

It is usually $130-$150, but I got it for $30 on some super-sale. I doubt that offer pops up often, but they are so incredibly better than the Creature 1/2/3 or Soundsticks or any other small speaker system that for less money (the Creature is like $200, with this being $150 normally) I would take it any day. No matter how much better the technology is, cramming speakers into too small a space makes bad sound quality and low volume. Get a real system (probably cheaper) and spraypaint it silver if you want it too look better. The Creature/Soundstick/any iPod dock systems are just too small to have any power. This one is actually not that much harder to move than the Creature-- the same size subwoofer (but square) and slightly bigger satelites (you only need to use 2 of them if you want).

 

It also has this nice external control. It has a ring for front/back and a volume knob kind of mixed together... very usable and looks awesome. I'll try to get a link, I'll post that in a few minutes.

 

Here's a (good) review of it. http://www.thetechzone.com/reviews/speakers/fps2000/

 

They put the retail at $199, so maybe in reality it was not as cheap as I said it was. On the other hand, MSRP is usually a good bit higher than the actual price...

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I highly recommend the Cambridge MicroWorks II. They will probably give you the best sound quality in that price range. If you listen to a lot of music, these speakers will really shine. I haven't heard a better tonal quality from any other PC speaker set.

 

http://www.cambridgesoundworks.com/store/c...a&item=c1mic2ti

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I reccomend the creature2 speakers, The sub-woofer is brilliant and they are really suited to music and games. They also connect just with a headphone port which means you can use them with alomst anything. if there is one letdown however, if you want to be playing it to lots of people or fill a huge space, they do have the power but they rapidly get quieter aas you go further away, I reccomend them though, because they are so cheap £60

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i know you said $100-$200 but for $250 the Bose Companion 3 speakers are realyl good. I have them and they have good sound. I have them hooked up to me G5 where i do all my movie creating in the Pro Apps. They have great sound for editting or them pop in a dvd and let the sound roar.

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If we are going out of the price range, get a Bose Wave Radio and a headphone jack-->stereo plug cord. We have one of the older versions (I do not know if the new "no buttons, remote only, slot load everything" ones even have a stereo input) and we use it with iPods all of the time.

 

Okay, that is rediculous, I know. It is closer to $500 than $200. Very closer. $250 is not crazy, this is. But it sounds great.

 

BTW, the digital input appears to have a headphone jack adapter thing for the FPS 2000, but it does not just plug into a headphone jack. You have to use the analog input for that, which is 1 front & 1 back input. As I said, get a splitter, surround is good, but it can be just a big speaker system.

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make sure that whatever you get will work with the single headphone jack on the ibook. I ended up getting an external sound card so I could use some creative 5.1's I bought.

 

Personally I don't have a very good ear for hearing the subtle differnces in music. I encode my music in mp3 and I use crappy speakers because I just can't hear the difference. But as long as we are talking about sound quality it is a really good idea to either use USB speakers, an external sound card, or something that moves the digital to analog conversion outside of the computer. Inside a computer is a very noisy place and doing the conversion there can degrade soundquality a lot. Leo Lapporte talked about it on call for help not to long ago and mentioned an inexpensive product [~$20] that he recomended.

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