Best Speaker System for $250

TheOatmeal

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Hello,

I am a college student who is looking for a surround sound speaker system to add to the dorm. What is the best deal for around $250?

Thank you.
 

rexter

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I don't know if there's any 5.1 multimedia system at that price range except like the one link below.

http://www.visions.ca/catalogue/category/ProductResults.aspx?categoryId=166

But for multimedia at that price range, If you aready have 5.1 sound chip/card then I would suggest something different that I've done it in the past and my customer is extremely happy.

Something like this for the front speaker

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Z-2300-THX-Certified-Speaker-Subwoofer/dp/B0002SQ2P2/ref=dp_cp_ob_e_title_1

or this

http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/B000062VUO/ref=dp_olp_used?ie=UTF8&qid=1289311328&sr=1-22&condition=used

And something this for center and rear speakers

http://www.amazon.com/Altec-Lansing-VS4621-Computer-Speaker/dp/B0038W0NEU/ref=sr_1_47?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1289311368&sr=1-47

But you'll need to something like the one below for the center channel connection. But If you know how to make this kind of connection then you can just get one 3.5 mm male jack and you the right channel then split the signal on a 3.5 mm female jack. The purpose of this cable is to split then combine the center channel to work with the suggest center speakers.

Connect this unit to (orange) center channel port of your sound card.
Adapter # 1 - http://www.amazon.com/RiteAV-3-5mm-Stereo-Female-Cable/dp/B0018MI5F6/ref=pd_cp_e_3

Connect the Splitter # 2 on the red portion of Adapter # 1 which is usually the center channel but sometimes white or black is used depending on the set up for center channel.
Splitter # 2 - http://www.amazon.com/RiteAV-RCA-Splitter-Male-Female/dp/B000V1JUJU/ref=pd_sim_e_7

Connect the Combiner # 3 between Splitter # 2 and your center speaker system.
Combiner # 3 – http://www.amazon.com/Cables-Go-Stereo-Female-Y-Cable/dp/B0002GUBIS/ref=sr_1_6?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1289312162&sr=1-6
 

rexter

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I don't know if there's any 5.1 multimedia system at that price range except like the one link below.

http://www.visions.ca/catalogue/category/ProductResults.aspx?categoryId=166

But for multimedia at that price range, If you aready have 5.1 sound chip/card then I would suggest something different that I've done it in the past and my customer is extremely happy.

Something like this for the front speaker

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Z-2300-THX-Certified-Speaker-Subwoofer/dp/B0002SQ2P2/ref=dp_cp_ob_e_title_1

or this

http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/B000062VUO/ref=dp_olp_used?ie=UTF8&qid=1289311328&sr=1-22&condition=used

And something this for center and rear speakers

http://www.amazon.com/Altec-Lansing-VS4621-Computer-Speaker/dp/B0038W0NEU/ref=sr_1_47?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1289311368&sr=1-47

But you'll need to something like the one below for the center channel connection. But If you know how to make this kind of connection then you can just get one 3.5 mm male jack and you the right channel then split the signal on a 3.5 mm female jack. The purpose of this cable is to split then combine the center channel to work with the suggest center speakers.

Connect this unit to (orange) center channel port of your sound card.
Adapter # 1 - http://www.amazon.com/RiteAV-3-5mm-Stereo-Female-Cable/dp/B0018MI5F6/ref=pd_cp_e_3

Connect the Splitter # 2 on the red portion of Adapter # 1 which is usually the center channel but sometimes white or black is used depending on the set up for center channel.
Splitter # 2 - http://www.amazon.com/RiteAV-RCA-Splitter-Male-Female/dp/B000V1JUJU/ref=pd_sim_e_7

Connect the Combiner # 3 between Splitter # 2 and your center speaker system.
Combiner # 3 – http://www.amazon.com/Cables-Go-Stereo-Female-Y-Cable/dp/B0002GUBIS/ref=sr_1_6?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1289312162&sr=1-6
 

sportsfanboy

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PSB's are nice for the money, if your looking at entry level Audio file gear. Maybe try to pick up a set used on craigslist or ebay. There are better obviously, but pretty good bang for the buck.
 

TheOatmeal

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Wow, thank you for all the input. Rexter, I like the idea of building my own. It's a dorm room after all; it does not need to be pretty. In fact, it may be better value.

I also neglected to look into used systems on Ebay, so I will get started on that.

I found this system on Amazon: Onkyo HT-S3300 5.1-Channel. It looks to be ideal. What do you guys think?
http://tinyurl.com/34c8fb8
 

rexter

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That would be a good buy I think, especially if the amp functionality is like the 308, which is a very good entry level reciever - http://www.hd.ca/onkyo/txsr308.php

PSB's are nice for the money, if your looking at entry level Audio file gear. Maybe try to pick up a set used on craigslist or ebay. There are better obviously, but pretty good bang for the buck.
That speakers system would go over his budget even purchased used at ebay. Worst thing is that you do not know what shape a used equipment is in. Moreover, he still needs an amp too.
 

sportsfanboy

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Also I have seen PSB's or similar quality cheap for book shelf speakers... They would make great budget surround system. And he said speaker system in his post, nothing about an amp.
 

rexter

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It would be nice if you can piece a 5.1 surround system with your recommendation so we could check them out. :)
 

sportsfanboy

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You think ebay is a dangerous place to buy? how old are you? I have seen a pair of PSB book shelf speakers for around 65 dollars used in the past. I'm not talking about the tower speakers, the bookshelf speakers are relatively cheap IF YOU LOOK HARD ENOUGH.
 

sportsfanboy

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I'm saying Ebay is very safe if you know what your doing and who to buy from. Occasionally you can find great deals, sometimes no. Right now there are no good deals for PSB's or similar quality book shelf's to piece together a surround system. Craigslist sometime is decent for used stuff as well, and you can usually demo the stuff before buying. You have to put the time and effort into it, good deals aren't going to fall on your lap, but they are out there. I bought a par of B&W nautilus 803's for 1,500.00 on craigslist about a half year ago. If you know anything about speakers you'll know that's a great deal on great speakers.

So I have seen the speakers i speak of for the price I'm saying. Might take some digging into and a little driving, but possible. Or buy a pre built generic 5.1 system.


 

rexter

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Congratulation with your good purchased, those are good speaker. I don't have problem with ebay or Craigslist or any other online transaction for that matter. Nevertheless, I usually not recommend used equipment unless good opportunity presents itself.
 
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