Desktop system upgrade

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by Alexalder, Jan 23, 2018.

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  1. Alexalder

    Alexalder
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    Hi, this is my current setup:
    [​IMG]

    I was thinking of making some upgrades with my graduation money, i guess the speakers would be the first thing to change, is that correct? What would you suggest? I don't really have a fixed budget, what would you think the first noticeable upgrade would cost?

    Are there some taller speakers i could fit in there? Or should i just buy some mount to get them to my ears' level?

    Thank you very much for your time, i'm a newbie
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2018
  2. Paul7777x

    Paul7777x
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    A good inexpensive upgrade would these.

    https://www.thomann.de/gb/jbl_lsr_305.htm?ref=search_rslt_JBLs+305_322770_0

    £185 a pair.

    And one of these as your Yamaha has no preouts.

    Yamaha WXC-50 Wireless Streaming Pre-Amplifier

    Save a lot of space too.

    These are highly rated too. A bit more budget necessary.

    https://www.thomann.de/gb/focal_shape_40.htm

    Easy to attach to the wall if you’d like more desk space.

    And then further up the budget range.

    https://www.thomann.de/gb/prod_AR_402777.html

    Legendary monitors. And as you’re up close I think you might get away without a sub. Certainly for music.
     
  3. Alexalder

    Alexalder
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    How does the preamp thing work? Does it replace the yamaha completely? Thank you for your answer :D
     
  4. BlueWizard

    BlueWizard
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    The Yamaha WXC-50 is primarily a Streaming Device. Though it does have Pre-Amp capability if needed.

    WXC-50 - Overview - Wireless Streaming Amplifiers - Audio & Visual - Products - Yamaha - UK and Ireland

    It is relatively compact and reasonably priced.

    It has several outputs -

    - RCA Fixed Analog Out
    - RCA Pre-Amp Variable Out
    - Digital Optical Out
    - Digital Coaxial Out
    - Subwoofer Out

    For Inputs it has -

    - Network
    - RCA Analog In
    - Optical In

    [​IMG]

    This makes it very versatile.

    The Pre-Amp Outs allow it to be used as a Stand Alone Device to control other Amps or Active Speakers.

    The FIXED Out would be used with an Integrated Amp that has its own internal Pre-Amp.

    Notice the small switched on the Right between the Red/White RCA Pre-Amp Out, and the Optical In. When switched to Pre-Amp, the output is variable and can be changed using the front Volume Control or with the Remote Control. Switched to the Player position, it is a Fixed Line Level output. The Player position would be used with Integrated Amps.

    One very common use for this Network Pre-Amp is for people who want a very minimal system on their TV. So, they use the compact Network Pre-Amp along with nice Active Speakers. A simple compact versatile system.

    It is virtually impossible to buy either a Network Streamer or a Pre-Amp for a very modest £249, much less getting both together for that price.

    Yamaha MusicCast WXC50 Networked Pre Amplifier - Superfi

    Notice the Yamaha also has a Subwoofer output.

    But I think we need to examine what you are trying to accomplish. Do you want an immersive Gaming System, or do you want a system more geared toward Music?

    Studio Monitors like the JBL 305 sound very good, they are among the highest rated in the price class, though there are other good Studio Monitors we can recommend. I favor Mackie. Most popular are KRK Rokit.

    But there are other options, in fact a whole wide rang of options. On my computer I have an Onkyo TX-8255 Stereo Amp and Q Acoustic 3020 Bookshelf speakers. This more than serves my need. The Amp is driven by the very basic sound card built into my computer.

    Other will add a USB-Only DAC to the System and drive their external amps using that.

    Here is an example of a very common and well regarded USB-only DAC -

    Audioquest Dragonfly Black USB Digital To Analogue Converter - Superfi

    Here is a better version -

    Audioquest Dragonfly Red USB Digital To Analogue Converter - Superfi

    But for that price you can get a more standard and versatile external DAC -

    Cambridge Audio DAC

    Then you need to decide what you want that DAC to drive. For a dedicated Desktop system Active or Bookshelf speakers are fine. These can range from 5" up to 8" depending on how much space you have available.

    Or you can use a very compact T-Amp like this, which is also very versatile and very compact -

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Amplifier-Bluetooth-Supports-Digital-Subwoofer/dp/B073F8Z565

    Z Review - SMSL AD18 (King of the Desktop /...


    These are some pretty stunning Active Speakers that have a Remote Control, Optical Inputs, and really do sound good -

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Edifier-S2000-Pro-Active-Speakers/dp/B01MTJ0FEY

    They also look very good.

    Z Review - Edifier S2000Pro [SOUND DEMO]


    Then there is the option of a stand alone amp and passive speakers similar to what I have.

    One thing I would suggest is that you not only look at what you need now, but at what you might need in the future. Again, if this will 100% forever be dedicated to a Computer Desktop, then Active speakers are a good choice. However, if there is a chance that this might expand into your living room, you might want something a bit more versatile like a separate amp and speakers.

    Also, what you pick will depend on what outputs are available on your computer. Many newer computers have Optical or Coaxial Outputs. That gives you quite a range of integrated amps to choose from.

    Also, the Edifier S2000 has an Optical Input, so if the computer has a Optical Out, then they could be directly connected.

    Down one model from the Studio Grade Edifier S2000 is the Edifier R2000DB for a bit less money -

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/EDIFIER-EDFR2000DB-Home-Audio-Speakers/dp/B00O3K7GP0

    So, again, you need to think about how much you actually want to spend, and what future uses this system might be put to. As I said, for a Dedicated Desktop, Studio Monitors, or Active Speaker are a good choice, and they can be adapted to Living Room Stereo and Movie/TV watching system relatively easily.

    Really the choice of equipment is purpose driven. For what purpose do you want to use these speakers? And of course the other driving factor is Budget.

    Steve/bluewizard
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2018
  5. Paul7777x

    Paul7777x
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    I can’t add to that anything about the WXC. As usual Steve’s advice is sterling stuff.

    I have owned the Yamaha and found it be an excellent preamp into even expensive actives. And the remote app is a very good one. Well worth the now £250 tag.

    You should get some part of that back by selling your av box too.
     
  6. Paul7777x

    Paul7777x
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    Having said all that, I’m not sure why you are using the Yamaha AV?

    If you do decide on the active speaker option and you’re only using the computer as a source then there’s no reason at all not to use the Schiit as a source/preamp.

    It has a great reputation and it’ll happily drive any active speakers, thereby giving you a bigger budget for them.
     
  7. Alexalder

    Alexalder
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    Hi, thank you for your incredibly detailed answer. As in the OP, i already have a DAC, but i had to buy the Yamaha to drive the speakers, and to accept inputs from other computers and consoles in my setup.

    My purpose is general pc and console usage, but i want the setup to shine when listening to music via my DAC. We don't have to worry about moving and expanding, if ever go living alone i would start again and probably have a much higher budget to deal with. My current budget is... well it depends on what pieces we should change and what could bring a definitive improvement, i have no hurry so i can delay the purchase until i have what is needed.

    My first problem is actually getting a grasp on what do i need to change

    As in my previous reply, the yamaha was needed to drive the speakers and is currently accepting multiple HDMI inputs mainly for audio but even for video switching. I barely know anything about audio so i really don't know what would be the best solution for my setup but i guess only using the DAC is not an option.
     

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