Seeking advice for a budget setup: stereo speakers and amp


New member
Aug 10, 2019
Hi all,

I've always owned very low-cost mini systems by Philips and Sony and always simply accepted the compromised sound quality.

However I think it's time for a change and saving up money for a bit more decent system.  

I've decided to go for a separate components setup. My budget is limited initially to about 1300 euros, but saving up a bit more should not be problem, as I'm not in a big hurry. Spending a bit less would be even less a problem of course ;-) For this money I'd like to have both a amp and two stereo speakers. I'll buy a (hopefully somewhat decent) CD player at a later time.

I'd really prefer to have floorstanding speakers, but as my living room is quite small (roughly probably about 32 m2 I'd guess) and I'm living in a flat, I'm not sure if this would be ideal. Would love to get your opinion on this. Two models that seem to match my budget(/interest) are the Monitor Audio Bronze BX5 and the Q-Acoustics 2050. In my opinion, they'd look beautiful in my living room too ;-) Both received very good reviews in What HiFi by the way (BX5 reviewd in the most recent issue by the way). Unfortunately I still need to audition them. Any tips about models that should be added to my audition shortlist are more than welcome. I think I prefer speakers that don't "color" the sound too much (if that makes any sense...). I'll audition other brands like KEF too.

For an amp, I'm not really sure what to get. Cambridge Audio 550A seems to match my budget, and will probably look good when paired with a CA CD player later. I also like the fact that they have a simple iPod docking station too, can be convenient. I've been looking at some Harman Kardon models, but not too sure what to think of them. Some people suggest a surround receiver. Although it would be VERY convenient to have audio and video being controlled by 1 device, I can't really think of any other advantage when I don't have surround setup (and will probably not have for some time to come). Again tips are more than welcome.   

I don't know if it's neccessary/helpful to mention my musical taste here... I'm heavily into popular music, my favorite artists being Alanis Morissette, Dido, Roisin Murphy, Moloko, Bjork and artists like Massive Attack, Portishead and Hooverphonic. I also have a nice DVD movie collection (one day I hope to buy Bluray) and will connect the DVD player to the amp, but music playback is my #1 priority for the time being. I think I should mention that I won't buy second hand.  

As English is not my native language (I'm based in The Netherlands), please forgive any spelling/grammatical errors ;-)  

Any help is very much appreciated.

Best regards, Vincent


New member
Nov 29, 2009
vince_nt:My budget is limited initially to about 1300 euros...
Marantz PM7001 + EB Acoustics EB2 (<£1000)

vince_nt:...but saving up a bit more should not be problem, as I'm not in a big hurry.
XTZ Class-A100D3 + XTZ 99.26 (£1200)

AVI Neutron Five 2.1 (£1299)

Just some suggestions. Happy hunting.



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