Question Home Audio Suggestions

InH4te

Honorable
May 5, 2014
17
0
10,510
0
Hi!

I'm hunting for a audio system for my apartment and I'm looking for recommendations. I would it like to
  • Have my TV output audio to this device (via HDMI I suppose)
  • Connect additional devices to play audio via Bluetooth
The type of system (home theater, soundbar, etc.) doesn't matter to me as long as it fits in the budget (below)

The room is ~35m2 and is almost a perfect square in shape.

What I'm looking for: I constantly have music playing in my house and I'm not audiophile in the sense I can't tell you if I'm looking for a system which has amazing base/treble or the other technical words, I have little idea what they mean. But I want to be able to experience the sound, if that makes sense? To give my atrociously vague statement some clarity - for me, a good sound experience is when I can hear each and every detail in a song or in a movie. I am not one to play music/movies at incredibly loud volumes. I would play it at a moderate volume and expect clarity and effect to the sound.
In the past, I have used to use a Bose SoundTouch 30 Wireless before and I loved it. It could connect to my television, it had Bluetooth and I enjoyed the sound it produced. I would buy the same again but I would like to ask some experts if there are better not-so-marketed brands that produce better sound than Bose.

Budget: I can go upto $1200. If there's something you really like that's slightly higher (~$200-$300), I'd consider this as well. Alternatively, if there's a unanimous suggestion for something that's above this budget but can be bought in stages, I would be open to considering this as a secondary option over a few months.I believe a music system is a good investment.

Thank you very much for any help! If I've missed something important, please let me know, I tried to cover everything I could think of. Cheers.
 

hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
Almost every decent sound system would sound better than the Bose system to those that compared them to several setups. However since you have no idea what you like and have not listened to things it's about impossible to know if you will spend $1,000 on a setup and like it better.

Type of system matters a lot, since speaker size and placements are important. Can you place rear/side speakers in the room? You said you have an apartment, a speaker system will generate a lot of noise especially using a sub for low end audio, have you thought about noise complaints from the neighbors? Having a sub of the power that is generally used in a $1,000 range home theater setup in a place with others living around you won't work. I have a small sub and even that generates enough sound energy to make things boomy in the room over where the TV is at any decent sound level.

Before spending that much money find a local store that sells audio equipment and listen to it. When I got my TV sound setup I listened to a handful of setups and ended up with one of the cheaper ones that new was about $200, that I bought used for $80. It sounded better to me than anything else in the place that cost double, and I ended up getting it for very cheap. https://www.vizio.com/sb3851d0.html Can't really just go by price or reviews only, if I did I would have spent like $300-500 instead of 80.

Something like a Swan M300 would be good for a simple all in one setup, speakers are powered, have optical for a connection to a TV, bluetooth, remote and the bass won't really be bothersome to neighbors if level is kept decent https://www.amazon.com/Swan-Speakers-Powered-Bookshelf-Warranty/dp/B07C1TVLDX/ref=asc_df_B07C1TVLDX/?tag=&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312099715108&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=17243028516997827442&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9001809&hvtargid=pla-648349897800&ref=&adgrpid=60234797177&th=1 Great multi-purpose setup if not going for surround sound, will work for anything from a TV to computer to using with a record player/CDs or phone.

If you want something higher end but still all in one but they may be tougher to find, for about $1,000 range the SWAN M3aMKII are good. However, you really need to get a bit of a grounding in audio before spending that much since you may not care for the difference in sound vs the price.
If you want a simple audiophile class speaker and are OK with spending the money maybe the Swan M3aMKII. I have not listened to them, but going by design and reviews they are great. https://swanspeakers.com/product/m3amkii/
With something under that you may need to get an itch to try higher end stuff, with these you should be happy to keep them till you can't hear anymore and they get passed on to the kids or whoever and you don't need to worry about getting amps/pre-amps/reviever/extra wiring for the setup.
 
Last edited:

InH4te

Honorable
May 5, 2014
17
0
10,510
0
Almost every decent sound system would sound better than the Bose system to those that compared them to several setups. However since you have no idea what you like and have not listened to things it's about impossible to know if you will spend $1,000 on a setup and like it better.

Type of system matters a lot, since speaker size and placements are important. Can you place rear/side speakers in the room? You said you have an apartment, a speaker system will generate a lot of noise especially using a sub for low end audio, have you thought about noise complaints from the neighbors? Having a sub of the power that is generally used in a $1,000 range home theater setup in a place with others living around you won't work. I have a small sub and even that generates enough sound energy to make things boomy in the room over where the TV is at any decent sound level.

Before spending that much money find a local store that sells audio equipment and listen to it. When I got my TV sound setup I listened to a handful of setups and ended up with one of the cheaper ones that new was about $200, that I bought used for $80. It sounded better to me than anything else in the place that cost double, and I ended up getting it for very cheap. https://www.vizio.com/sb3851d0.html Can't really just go by price or reviews only, if I did I would have spent like $300-500 instead of 80.

Something like a Swan M300 would be good for a simple all in one setup, speakers are powered, have optical for a connection to a TV, bluetooth, remote and the bass won't really be bothersome to neighbors if level is kept decent https://www.amazon.com/Swan-Speakers-Powered-Bookshelf-Warranty/dp/B07C1TVLDX/ref=asc_df_B07C1TVLDX/?tag=&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312099715108&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=17243028516997827442&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9001809&hvtargid=pla-648349897800&ref=&adgrpid=60234797177&th=1 Great multi-purpose setup if not going for surround sound, will work for anything from a TV to computer to using with a record player/CDs or phone.
That's some great points, thank you.

Regarding your questions
- Can you place rear/side speakers in the room - Yes, I can. Space is not an issue. While I do not know how complex a system can become, I do have space for perhaps 2 tall standing speakers, a subwoofer (totally 3 pieces). I could even mount speakers on the ceiling if required but it involves effort from me so I'd say don't consider it as option #1

" However since you have no idea what you like and have not listened to things" <-- If you don't mind, were you in my place and had to explain what you like and seek system suggestions, how would you do it? Asking for an example because I might know but not know how to describe it to you all :)

Noise complaints from the neighbor - Yes this is potentially a factor to consider. It is an apartment and I have an apartment above me, below me and the wall against which the music system will be placed is a shared wall with another apartment on the same floor. That said, the windows and doors are sound resistant. But yes, I wouldn't want to push my luck there.

I unfortunately cannot visit a local store for a while thanks to covid. I would normally never buy something without listening to it first but here I don't know when I'll be able to go into a shop and listen to things myself.

Thanks for the suggestion regarding Swan. What is the best way to connect a TV to such an output device for audio quality? Asking because I would need to check if my TV has those output ports since in this case you mentioned coaxial output.
 

hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
Having neighbors would pretty much rule out having a sub setup, low frequencies travel though materials a lot easier than the high ones, including vibrations.

Most TVs would have an optical out on them, the speakers I linked all have optical inputs to connect it to.

If you really can't go to a place to try things, then really it's a guess for you. The SWAN M3aMKII are very well reviewed, have a simple setup with built in amp and plenty of input options, have good bass without a sub on the floor to bother neighbors, that may be your best pick.

The M300 would be a close second here at a lot cheaper. Unless you compare things you won't be able to know if the extra cost is worth it or not. If it was my money and I have no idea about other speakers, I would buy the M300, why spend more for something that you won't even know the difference of? It's like picking a car without driving it first, sure one may handle nice, but without trying more you will never know if another one you would like better or worse or will be the same but cost more. Since you basically can only pick one, unless you buy and can return them, you may as well go for a safe pick that is good but also cost effective. If you can buy from a place with a good return policy, maybe buy two/three sets and compare them at your house, then return the ones you don't like as much. Just make sure you can return them once opened and tried out.

A soundbar with a sub/rear speakers would be nice for movies, you would need to keep the sub level low though, but it will not be as good for music as the Swan speakers. The speakers would be better for music and still great for use with a TV just you will not get the true rear channel audio from behind.
 
Last edited:

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS