Questions about home audio and desktop speakers

luclucas

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Oct 26, 2013
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Hi community,

I was wondering if I could get some help with questions I got about the speakers. Actually, I am new to this world and there is some stuff I would like to clarify.

I am planing on buying speakers that I would be using for a PC. I like to listen electro music, and I would like to get some speakers with a decent bass. So I made some research and found the Cerwin-Vega XD5 (http://www.amazon.com/Cerwin-Vega-Active-Studio-Monitors/dp/B00IJKQGJC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1442579968&sr=8-1&keywords=cerwin+xd5).

Also, I saw somewhere on the internet that a DAC would be recommended, like the Audioengine D1 (http://www.amazon.com/Audioengine-D1-24-bit-Digital-to-Analog-Converter/dp/B006IPH5H2/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1442579981&sr=8-1&keywords=audioengine+d1).

My question would be if you could, if possible, give me some advice about the speakers. Also, I saw that home speakers seem to be better as far as I understood, why not connect then home speakers to my PC using some cables and the DAC, is it worth it?

Thank you very much for your attention and I wish you a nice week.

Btw, sorry for the links, I actually don't know yet how to merge them to a text...
 

Rogue Leader

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Dec 22, 2014
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So the Cerwin Vega speakers you picked have a built in amplifier to power them. If you were to use the DAC you selected It just takes your computer's output, converts it to analog and then outputs the signal to the powered amplifier of the speakers. The advantage being a good quality DAC will give you a cleaner truer sound.

If you were to use normal home speakers those do not have an amplifier to power them. So you would need the speakers, as well as an amplifier such as:

http://smile.amazon.com/AudioSource-AMP-100-Stereo-Power-Amplifier/dp/B00026BQJ6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1442585505&sr=8-1&keywords=2+channel+home+amplifier

And the DAC to provide the signal to the amplifier. It would cost you more money, you'd need more equipment, and honestly studio monitors like my M Audio's and the CV's you picked exceed the quality of a lot of lower end stereo equipment, so for the money they really give you value in terms of power and sound quality.

Now there are cheaper ways around this, like you could bypass the DAC and use a stereo Y cable from your PC's audio output however you will sacrifice audio quality. Based on the fact you're asking here about it, I know you don't want to waste the time with that.

This is why I suggested what I did, in terms of the most compact but best quality setup a dedicated sound card (which has a built in high quality DAC) and a great pair of studio monitors is the best way to go.
 

Rogue Leader

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I have similar speakers and they are excellent. Yes you can use a home speaker setup but don't forget your home speakers aren't powered so you'll need to hook the dac to your amp as well. And then have that whole setup near your PC, etc.

That If you're using this on a desktop you may want to consider a sound card instead of the DAC as the audio quality will be worlds better. Something like this:

http://smile.amazon.com/Creative-Blaster-Audiophile-Performance-Headphone/dp/B00AQ5PK6I/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1442580529&sr=8-2&keywords=sound+blaster

Or

http://smile.amazon.com/PCI-Express-XONAR-ESSENCE-STX-90-YAA0C0-0UAN00Z/dp/B001OV789U/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1442580688&sr=8-8&keywords=sound+card

Both have analog RCA outs and are high end. I run a Creative Titanium X-Fi HD which they no longer make anymore and its paired with a set of M-Audio AV 40 speakers which are similar to the CV's you picked out. Its an absolutely killer setup and the high end sound card with all its processing features etc will give you much better quality and more forceful audio for music, gaming etc.
 

luclucas

Honorable
Oct 26, 2013
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Hello Rogue, thanks for your great answer :), I really appreciate. Still, would you recommend picking home speakers instead of PC's, and what do you mean by that the home speakers "aren't powered"? Also, the DAC I said, I think it is also and amp, does it change something?

Again thx for the reply.
 

USAFRet

Splendid
Moderator


"Home audio" speakers and PC speakers are different.
Home audio speakers need an actual amp to run them.
PC speakers can be run from the PC, or a DAC soundcard.
 

Rogue Leader

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Dec 22, 2014
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So the Cerwin Vega speakers you picked have a built in amplifier to power them. If you were to use the DAC you selected It just takes your computer's output, converts it to analog and then outputs the signal to the powered amplifier of the speakers. The advantage being a good quality DAC will give you a cleaner truer sound.

If you were to use normal home speakers those do not have an amplifier to power them. So you would need the speakers, as well as an amplifier such as:

http://smile.amazon.com/AudioSource-AMP-100-Stereo-Power-Amplifier/dp/B00026BQJ6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1442585505&sr=8-1&keywords=2+channel+home+amplifier

And the DAC to provide the signal to the amplifier. It would cost you more money, you'd need more equipment, and honestly studio monitors like my M Audio's and the CV's you picked exceed the quality of a lot of lower end stereo equipment, so for the money they really give you value in terms of power and sound quality.

Now there are cheaper ways around this, like you could bypass the DAC and use a stereo Y cable from your PC's audio output however you will sacrifice audio quality. Based on the fact you're asking here about it, I know you don't want to waste the time with that.

This is why I suggested what I did, in terms of the most compact but best quality setup a dedicated sound card (which has a built in high quality DAC) and a great pair of studio monitors is the best way to go.
 

boju

Distinguished


True, wont be running 100W+ RMS speakers from the motherboard's measly amplifier, there will be a finger from god pointing out from under the clouds saying NO!

Also depends what speaker sets we're comparing with. All PC speaker sets that are powered or with a Sub have inbuilt amplifiers, that's what's drawing most of the power, the speakers a little. Same with hifi speakers, needing an amplifier which is usually the AVR which resembles the motherboard or PC sub but with beefier amp. So really only difference between a set of tower speakers and PC speakers are the wired ends being RCA, 3.5mm or bare speaker wire.

Besides the ends and wattage requirements, PC and Home audio are the same.
 

ien2222

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Mar 28, 2010
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Hey,

As far as DAC vs sound card, it probably doesn't matter any. The DAC you listed will be just as good and the cards Rogue listed plus you get to have a volume control know and headphone jack in a more convenient spot if you wish.

Personally, I'd use a DAC over a sound card, at least for 2 channel listening.


 

luclucas

Honorable
Oct 26, 2013
12
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10,570
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OK, thank you for your answer ^^
 

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