First system: personal use and house parties. Under £350.

admin_exported

New member
Aug 10, 2019
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Hello everyone.

Please bear with me, I have a lot of questions, I'd be really thankful for yourhelp.

I'm a huge music and film lover but have always been restrained to terrible £30computer speakers. I want to hook something better up to my computer, mostlyfor personal use, but also occasionally for house parties. I onlyhave £350 to spend at the absolute maximum, which I'm sure is a tiny amount formany of you, but it's quite a lot for me as a student/beginner and will hopefully buy mesome speakers that will blow my £30 logitechs out the water in both quality and volume. I don't know verymuch about hi fi but I'm an eager learner so please feel free to teach.

I have little idea where to start. I've been reading through posts on hereand have been thinking about a cheap pair of floorstanders. A huge array comeup on amazon for £100-£200. I've seen the Wharfedale Xarxus 5000srecommended as good party speakers? But will their quality be significantlybetter than my current speakers, or are they just louder? I'm open to any other suggestions.

And I have no idea what sort of amp I should get, any advice or suggestions?

There is a small possibility I will buy DJ decks in the future which would be used with these speakers as well.

Thank you,
Tom
 
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Anonymous

Guest
for your use you are bang on with the choise of speaker.
that leaves you £200 for an amp and a reasonable DAC so you can improve the sound quality from you computer.

maybe something like the entry level Firestone DAC which has USB connection for£125 and something like a second hand NAD or Rotel amp from Steves hifi.

or if your computer has an optical out or HDMI out then get an av receiver such as the Yamaha RXV 367 from superfi which will do the job fine but won't produce the same level of sound quality as the previous option. The Av receiver will give you further inputs such as HDMI for TV and Xbox and the like.

In my opinion the Xarus speakers and the Yamaha would be a good pairing to take you through your student days and stand up to a bit of abuse at parties and the like.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
brittondave:for your use you are bang on with the choise of speaker.that leaves you £200 for an amp and a reasonable DAC so you can improve the sound quality from you computer.maybe something like the entry level Firestone DAC which has USB connection for£125 and something like a second hand NAD or Rotel amp from Steves hifi.or if your computer has an optical out or HDMI out then get an av receiver such as the Yamaha RXV 367 from superfi which will do the job fine but won't produce the same level of sound quality as the previous option. The Av receiver will give you further inputs such as HDMI for TV and Xbox and the like.In my opinion the Xarus speakers and the Yamaha would be a good pairing to take you through your student days and stand up to a bit of abuse at parties and the like.

Thank you very much. The Xarxus seem to be out of stock on amazon and hughes-direct, I hope they haven't been discontinued.

What is a DAC? Something necessary to bridge the gap between computer and speakers, I suppose? and an AV receiver? I'd prefer the higher level of quality if possible, and I don't use consoles or televisions so I don't really mind about that.

Edit: If I were going to DJ, would I only be able to with the amp, or would I be able to with the AV receiver as well?
My computer has two DVI outputs for screens, is that what you mean by optical out?
 
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Anonymous

Guest
A DAC or digital Analogue convert.

It converts a digital signal off a cd or computer file into analogue. The signal then gets amplified to the speakers.

cd players, computers have built in DAC's some of which are good quality some of which are not so good.

A separate DAC will improve the sound quality from your computer. If you want to see DAC reviews on this site look under the CD player section.

From your reply then go for the stereo amp. Steve will give you t he best amplifier based on your budget with a three month warranty. He is a nice guy! just say I have this much to spend and I would like the best amp you have for that money. He knows his stuff and you won't be disappointed.

The Xarus speakers are out of stock but I know for a fact they have 210 units coming from the warehouse Christmas.

If you want a good simple USB DAC then the HRT music streamer 2 is a very good unit but costs £144 approximate but as I stated earlier there are some good DAC under £120.

An optical out is different from a DVI out..it's for audio only. If you plan to use decks later on the the stereo amplifier will have plenty of extra inputs for the mixer to be used.

D. sorry a bit hung over ..... hope this helps
 

steven123

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Apr 19, 2010
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You dont want 5.1 surround sound i suppose? Cause then you can get the qacoustics 1010i 5.1 pack for 200 pounds at superfi. Add a secondhanded reciever and you have a great package. If you want stereo i would recommand some active speakers like the krk rp5 and a dac like the alrwady mentioned hrt music streamer 2.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
brittondave:A DAC or digital Analogue convert. It converts a digital signal off a cd or computer file into analogue. The signal then gets amplified to the speakers. cd players, computers have built in DAC's some of which are good quality some of which are not so good. A separate DAC will improve the sound quality from your computer. If you want to see DAC reviews on this site look under the CD player section. From your reply then go for the stereo amp. Steve will give you t he best amplifier based on your budget with a three month warranty. He is a nice guy! just say I have this much to spend and I would like the best amp you have for that money. He knows his stuff and you won't be disappointed. The Xarus speakers are out of stock but I know for a fact they have 210 units coming from the warehouse Christmas. If you want a good simple USB DAC then the HRT music streamer 2 is a very good unit but costs £144 approximate but as I stated earlier there are some good DAC under £120. An optical out is different from a DVI out..it's for audio only. If you plan to use decks later on the the stereo amplifier will have plenty of extra inputs for the mixer to be used. D. sorry a bit hung over ..... hope this helps
steven123:You dont want 5.1 surround sound i suppose? Cause then you can get the qacoustics 1010i 5.1 pack for 200 pounds at superfi. Add a secondhanded reciever and you have a great package. If you want stereo i would recommand some active speakers like the krk rp5 and a dac like the alrwady mentioned hrt music streamer 2.

That helps loads BrittonDave, thank you very much for your help. I expect I'll wait for the Xarus to come in stock then I'll buy some of those.

Steven123, it was my understanding that 5.1 surround sound was lots of quieter speakers rather than a couple big loud ones, so although they would be good for films, wouldn't that make them not such an ideal choice for parties?

I'll get looking up the other options you guys have mentioned now, thanks for the help
 

basshead

New member
Mar 4, 2009
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hi, too add what has already been said, go for a stereo amp and 2 speakers rather then an av receiver an 5.1 if for use at parties.

I am also a student and use my system at parties, and for that reason strongly recommend going the 2nd hand ebay route, so if you thrash your system and do any damange it's less money lost (i blew a wharfedale diamond 9.1 speaker through loud volume at parties)

i currently have beresford tc-7510 DAC > NAD c325bee > b&w 601 s2 speakers. this could cost under your budget and give fantastic results. (amp cost approx £100 on ebay, speakers about £120 on ebay, DAC would be about £120 new)

also, a DAC is also known as a 'sound card' in computing terms. it isn't essential for you, you could use the headphone out on your pc to connect to the amp, if this sound isnt good enough for you then look at getting a DAC after, just do the amp and speakers first.

what music do you listen to?

oh and how about space? where will the speakers be? if on your desk with limited space then maybe some active monitors will be better for you ( may also handle loud volume at parties better )

good luck with your search!
 
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Anonymous

Guest
basshead:
hi, too add what has already been said, go for a stereo amp and 2 speakers rather then an av receiver an 5.1 if for use at parties.

I am also a student and use my system at parties, and for that reason strongly recommend going the 2nd hand ebay route, so if you thrash your system and do any damange it's less money lost (i blew a wharfedale diamond 9.1 speaker through loud volume at parties)

i currently have beresford tc-7510 DAC > NAD c325bee > b&w 601 s2 speakers. this could cost under your budget and give fantastic results. (amp cost approx £100 on ebay, speakers about £120 on ebay, DAC would be about £120 new)

also, a DAC is also known as a 'sound card' in computing terms. it isn't essential for you, you could use the headphone out on your pc to connect to the amp, if this sound isnt good enough for you then look at getting a DAC after, just do the amp and speakers first.

what music do you listen to?

oh and how about space? where will the speakers be? if on your desk with limited space then maybe some active monitors will be better for you ( may also handle loud volume at parties better )

good luck with your search!

I was thinking of doing that with the headphone out and then upgrading to a DAC later when I have more money. I listen to literally the most diverse range of music possible, dubstep, brutal death metal, and my absolute favourite is classical indian and persian music. Space isn't limited at all. I do a radio show at my university and, although I'm sure all monitors are very different, theirs didn't seem at all loud enough to me and I was hoping something larger would have a bit more volume to it - but as I've said I know very little. I'll get looking up these things later. A lot of people recommend buying second hand but I'm a bit nervous doing it because I have little idea what to look for and even when I do I struggle to find it on ebay.

Thanks very much for your help though I'll do a full reply later (when the relatives have gone home!)
 

basshead

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Mar 4, 2009
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i was weary about buying second hand, but all of my experiences have been positive, even made a profit through buying and selling on ebay over 2 years, which effectively means that my current set up was free.

very diverse music tastes there, good to see another dubstep fan on here, which means you want good quality bass :) so again my suggestion of a NAD amp with b&w (bowers and wilkings) speakers should go well, and can go loud enough for parties trust me (my local police agree, oops)

as it goes... i have been watching these on ebay, if its party speakers you want then these would more than do, if you have the space for them

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Pair-Jamo-D265-Speakers-Stands-Included-/330509834557?pt=UK_AudioVideoElectronics_HomeAudioHiFi_HiFiSpeakers&hash=item4cf3ebd93d#ht_500wt_1156

i would definitely suggest getting amp and speakers (or actives) sorted first. if you feel you want better sound then think about a DAC/soundcard

good luck!
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Hi,

This is my first post on the forum but have been a long time follower! Being a medical student myself for the past 5 years I felt obliged to comment. My system when I started 5 years ago was a Denon DM-35 system and mission m72i speakers (for £230 from Hyperfi back in 2005). Although quite small, they put out a substantial volume and were more than adequate for house parties (for which I put the bass at -2 and volume at 95%ish).The Denon system was also very practical as it had FM radio and CD changer too and sounded great when watching movies (The mission speakers could handle the bass heavy scenes pretty well)

I then started DJ'ing during my second year (RnB, Hip Hop) and added the Native Instruments Audio 8 DJ interface which doubled as an extremely good sound card. Over the last year I have upgraded the amplifier to an Arcam a85 which is even louder (and sbeautiful sound too) and the Missions seem quite capable of handling the power. Plans are to upgrade to the Mission 79 series and add a p85 power amp.

My advice is to go for something which is upgradeable and well built as the system will take a few knocks during the years; you will most definately gain a huge amount from upgrading to any seperates system from the logitechs. A decent amp (Nad, Rotel, Denon) with a good sized bookshelf speaker (like Mission M72i) will give a really good output even if your source is an ipod or laptop!

Also, changing the speaker cable even to something basic like Gale made a huge difference in sound for not a lot of money, as did buying a better quality 3.5mm jack lead.

Good luck on your hunt!
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I have to say that brittondave's suggestion with the xarus5000 still seems the most tempting to me, they have fantastic reviews on amazon and can be bought brand new for a good price. Also, they'll make both good normal speakers and party speakers. I think I will try out the amp and speakers straight from the headphone socket now, and then I will upgrade to a good DAC afterwards - unless anyone has any good criticisms of this plan?
 
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Anonymous

Guest
brittondave:...The Xarus speakers are out of stock but I know for a fact they have 210 units coming from the warehouse Christmas...

The speakers are still out of stock unfortunately? Are you certain? :(
 

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