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A loudspeaker is an electro-acoustic device that is used to reproduce acoustic energy, or sound. When selecting a pair of loudspeakers, find one with proper stereo imaging (sound you can "see") and a flat-ish, neutral frequency response. If taken care of, and driven responsibly, a good quality pair of loudspeakers will deliver you pleasurable music listening for many years to come.
Bookshelf Speakers Note that some require amplifiers (passive) and some don't (active). From cheapest to highest, and not limited to:
- Dayton B652
- Micca MB-42X
- Polk Monitor 40
- Pioneer SP-BS22-LR
- Audioengine A2+
- KEF LS50
Studio Monitors Studio monitors are mostly employed in music, movie and broadcast production. They are typically more "clinical" than Hi-Fi speakers as they reproduce material "as-is". This means poorly mastered music may sound dull or muddy on them, as they will point out the issues in mixes more obviously than Hi-Fi speakers as this is their job. Nevertheless, they are excellent performers when supplied quality, well-mastered material, and are also conveniently active (amplification built-in).
- Polk Audio PSW10
- Polk Audio PSW111
- Klipsch R-100SW
- SVS, JL, etc
- Lepai LP 2020A+ ($20)
- Audiosource AMP-100 ($75)
- Sherwood RX4508 (Under $200)
- Vintage or new Yamaha, Pioneer, Onkyo, Marantz, NAD, etc
Refer to your loudspeaker's manual for advice on how to properly place them, as they differ in design and wave guide types. If this is not available, place the speakers in a triangle, and aim the speakers 60° degrees to the listening position. Finish studio monitor manufacturer Genelec has an excellent guide for proper loudspeaker placement.
For those who want surround sound, and have an audio interface or sound card that supports it, purchase a surround sound amplifier and then pair it with matched speakers of your choosing/budget. You will also need a subwoofer and a center channel speaker. There are various sizes of surround sound (5.1, 7.1, Atmos, etc) but 5.1 is arguably the most common.
- Cheap KRK
- PC Speakers, aside from the Klipsch ProMedia 2.1.
If equalizing, don't be fucking stupid and crank the bands up. Typically for room correction, you will do subtractive EQ, fixing room modes and subsequently improving your stereo imaging and detail.
Don't hurt your ears, and keep listening. May you be blessed with many years filled of wonderful music. Peace.