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Vinyl Friendly System under £700

samcfbates

Novice Member
Hi,

I'm looking to upgrade my speaker set-up, but know practically nothing about hi-fi in general, and so am looking for some recommendations. I am looking for a vinyl friendly system under £700.

My current speakers are abysmal (not worth specifying), but I've managed to save up £700 to invest in a proper hi-fi system. I am looking for one that will primarily serve my vinyl DJ set-up (two audio-technica AT LP120s and a Xone:23 mixer). However, I frequently listen to music off my laptop, and am also beginning to experiment with music production in Logic. Therefore, my set-up would ideally serve all of these functions, although my primary concern is, as mentioned, how my records will sound*.

As I said, I know virtually nothing about hi-fi, but understand I'll be needing an amp and a set of monitors (I'm unclear as to whether I need a pre-amp as well??). My research so far has pointed me towards Cambridge Audio or Audiolab for a cheap, high-quality amp, and Acoustic Energy or Wharfedale for a cheap, high-quality set of monitors.

Can anyone recommend me specific models for both an amp and monitors, which, together, won't set me back more than £700? I hope I'm not being too ambitious for this price-range, but please let me know if I am.

Thanks

S

*P.S. To be more specific about what I am looking for:
I'm hoping for a system on which I can learn to EQ (in a 'DJ' context) properly, and to perform slow, gradual mixes; hence I want to be able to hear the details across my lows, mids and highs. I also want a system that really brings out the best in my records (which are mainly house, techno and funk/soul/disco), and so would like a warm/vibrant and well spaced sound. This system would be for home entertainment only, so, whilst I'd like them to pack some punch, they'd only need to perform in a relatively small-sized room.​
 

arb70sok

Established Member
Samcfbates - I am feeling sorry for you as 5 days gone by and not one response!

I posted a reply thinking your Xone 23 was another record deck and then read your post more closely and realised it was a mixer with balanced XLR output which kind of changes the landscape rather dramatically so I have deleted all I wrote!

Afraid that Xone 23 mixer is a beast that I (and I expect a lot of people on a HiFi forum!) know nothing about.

I would suggest that you try and speak to other owners of this about the types of solution that have worked for them!
 
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BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
The problem is you have conflicting interests. What makes a good DJ system does not necessarily make a good system for listening to music at home.

Further, speaker for mixing, are different than speakers for playing back. Will this system simply be used in your bedroom, or do you plan professional DJ gigs? Because those are opposite systems.

If you plan EQ in premixing, you have a very different set up than if you play to EQ when you play back.

EQ Pre-Mixing requires very flat neutral Studio speakers to assure that what goes into the re-record is exactly what you hear in the monitors. For example, if you Mix using bass heavy speakers, then you are going to under-mix the bass.

But, for playback, likely you do want bass heavy speakers so the music has some viseral thump to it.

So, how will this system be used, strickly at home? On occasion a small party for friends? Or do you foresee small club venues, because the speaker and amps for a small club need to be substantially bigger than for your bedroom or a small house party.

That's the ambiguous part - How and where will this system be used?

In what size room will the system be used? That is for normal daily use?

One of the best deals on an amp right now is the Yamaha AS501 Integrated amp with 85w/ch. DAC, Phono, Sub out for £199 for several sources -

Yamaha AS501 Amplifier with DAC - Superfi

That leaves £500 for a pair of speakers. But how big of speakers can you handle? Do you prefer large Floorstanding or a Bookshelf/Subwoofer combination?

Do you need anything else from the budget besides Amp and Speakers?

If you have some type of mixer, then you could consider a PA Power Amp, you can get very powerful amps very cheap, but being power amps they have limited controls. Most do have a Master Volume Control on each channel, but that's the extent of it.

Having this type of amp implies that you have some other means of a Pre-Amp, perhaps you DJ Console combined with an Equalizer would be a sufficient Pre-Amp. Though if your existing mixer has Tone Controls of its own, then perhaps you would not need a Graphic Equalizer.

Here is an example of a popular PA Power Amps of reasonably high quality -

Behringer A500 Studio Amp, 125w/ch to 8 ohms RMS - £150 -


Behringer A500 Amplifier - Power Amplifiers - Studio Gear - Studiospares

Cheap enough, but ...again... with limited controls.

While you have given us a lot of information it tends to be of the wrong kind. We need to know how the system will be used and to have some general indication of your vision for the system. Then we can base our recommendations on that.

For speakers, while PA speaker might be an option, I'm going to assume for the moment that was not your intent.

Here are some speaker roughly in your budget range -

Mission MX5 Speakers (Pair) - Superfi

Monitor Audio MR6 Speakers (Pair) - Superfi

The problem with Bookshelf/Subwoofer is that while bookshelf are cheap enough, Subs can get expensive.

But consider this -

Monitor Audio Bronze 1 Speakers (Pair) - Superfi

Monitor Audio Bronze 2 Speakers (Pair) - Superfi

XLS200-FF

An alternative, depending on the outputs of the Mixing Console, you could go with Active PA speakers -

Here are a couple of Samson Active PA Speakers 8" - £130 each -

Samson Auro D208A Active PA Speaker


That cuts you a bit short on a Subwoofer though.

That's about all I can say for now.

Steve/bluewizard
 

rorackowe

Prominent Member
Are you going to be using your mixer in the HiFi setup? Effectively that can be used as a preamp (it serves the same purpose) although not too user friendly.

If you wanted to, you could just add studio active monitors to your existing setup fed straight from the XLR out from the mixer. These tend to be more revealing and so better for mixing than traditional Hi-Fi, but maybe less "warm" / coloured.
 

rorackowe

Prominent Member
M audio M3-8 get some good reviews at around £420 a pair. 8 inch woofer goes pretty deep, 3 drivers per speaker, tri amped, a lot of bang per buck. Adam active monitors seem pretty popular with Hi-Fi listeners too.
 

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