Can I connect Micca PB42X and Polk PSW10 to PC?

SBaxterOK

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Hi everyone!

This is actually my first time posting here, but I get so much information here from other people's questions and answers I thought I'd give it my own go.

I was wondering what I would have to/if it were possible to hook up the PB42X active speakers and the PSW10 active sub to a PC with only a built in soundcard that is fairly decent. I have no mixer or anything like that and simply wondering it is possible or not and if there would be any issues. Any help at all would be absolutely wonderful.

Is it possible to simply split the signal to both the speakers and the sub or am I being naive?

I don't necessarily want to go with a 2.1 system that is necessarily a "pc speaker" setup as I've read some negative reviews on even the most valued of them. My budget is right over $200

Thank you all so much!
 

justin.m.beauvais

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Just out of the audio jack is possible. If you ran it to the Sub first then out to the L and R speakers from there that might work, but it is probably an imperfect solution since your speakers have RCA inputs and your sub doesn't have RCA outputs. However, your speakers have a 3.5mm input... So, you could probably get a 3.5mm splitter, then run a 3.5mm cable to your speakers, then a 3.5mm to RCA cable to run to your sub. Since they have amps built in you wouldn't have to worry about the power loss of running to two outputs, but quality might suffer.

The other option is to pick up an inexpensive receiver, or even a moderately priced one. For my laptop I have an older Yamaha receiver with a USB input. From there I have my left and right channels routed to a Yamaha 12 inch sub, then from the sub to my left and right speakers, which are not powered.

With unpowered speakers you'd be able to do this really easily with one cable and some speaker wire, but those active speakers make things more difficult.
 

SBaxterOK

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Yes, that is actually the eventual plan--to upgrade to a more proper speaker setup. I also have a home theater setup so I might mix and match later in time. How much of a possible quality loss? I mean, would it still sound pretty damn decent or are we talking relatively signicant? And thank you so much for such a quick response that is so concise and exactly what I was looking for.

Also would a desktop stereo receiver work for all this?
 

justin.m.beauvais

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Honestly I'm not sure how much quality loss. If you keep the cables as short as possible to avoid loss it should be minimal. It depends on connection quality as well. We are talking about a 1.5 to 3 db loss in signal per connection, which is a quarter to half the power... so you have one connection from the pc, you're splitting it from there which halfs the signal, then connections to new cables and connection to the devices... so you are going to have a significant amount of power loss, thankfully you have amplifiers built into those speakers, but it depends on the quality of cables as well... so... spring for the mid range or high end cables. The cheap ones aren't going to give you a great time. Losing power might lose you quality, but it depends on how much power you lose which is down to the connections... so it is hard to say. Get good cables for the best results.

 

SBaxterOK

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Thank you so much justin! That is exactly what I was hoping for. The cables won't be going far and I will definitely splurge on good cables. I just edited my post above but would those little desktop stereo receivers work for my situation? Never planning on a 5.1 setup on my pc.

Could i use some DAC for both the speakers and subwoofer?
 

justin.m.beauvais

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A little desktop stereo receiver would work well. Especially if they have a USB connection like a few of them do. Then it is a one cable connection and you are only limited by the DAC in the receivers, which are in most cases selected to get the most out of the included system. They are pretty slick setups and the evolution from what my current setup is. I was thinking about getting one, but turns out that Yamaha overengineered the crap out of my setup... so nothing I could get short of $400 is any better... and I'm ok with that.
 

SBaxterOK

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What DAC would you recommend to hook up the sub and receivers? And it would be the same way you have yours setup currently---rca to the sub then speaker wire to the speakers? if i didn't go the unpowered route--is it possible to connect speaker wire to rca by way of some convertor or is that feasible?

Would a DAC allow me to use passive speakers? -- no :) im a dork. So my question then becomes how would I connect the DAC---RCA--->Powered Sub----(no RCA output?)------>powered speakers? how would i get from the sub to the powered speakers lol. I don't want to buy eeevverrything agh.

Im now trying to decide between a DAC with the powered speakers and sub or the method we previously establish.

Or can I somehow RCA split from the DAC? Since both speaker and sub have RCA in? Is that possiblie? Because i feel like that would be the simplest setup
 

justin.m.beauvais

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Well, going to a DAC would be a USB connection from the PC, then there are bunches of models, most with RCA or banana clip connections. Most are just stereo, so the sub would be hard to do unless you ran through the sub, but I've yet to find a DAC with spring clips (I haven't looked really hard though, I've just never come across one) so you'd have to go RCA to your sub, then speaker wire to your speakers... honestly the powered speakers are the problem in all of this.

That said, RCA is basically shielded speaker wire with a connector on the end that puts your positive side in the middle and the negative side on the outer ring... just like the banana clips are speaker wire with a banana clip on the end, but it is one connector for positive and one connector for negative in that case. Sooooo, if you are into destroying cables you could cut up an RCA cable and hook it into your spring clips. I've never done that before so I don't know exactly how well it will go... but it is an option.

Finally, yes. You can RCA split from the DAC. Splitter into output, run cable from splitters to devices. That would be pretty easy to do.
 
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