Recommendations for computer speakers

Adam, I just got curious about the FX621s you may be replacing. I see their advertised frequency response was 31-18,000Hz, which is pretty impressive at the low end (and at a certain age we don’t hear much above 18,000Hz anyway). The manual, however, adds “(-10dB).” Yikes. That is not impressive, and makes me wonder what’s going on in between.

As you do your research, look for a specification of the speakers’ flat frequency response: the range of frequencies that vary only +/-3dB from zero. Some companies, like Genelec (see my post above), publish them; some, like Bose (ditto), don’t want you to know. You want to know.

Wow. A lot to digest here. I have an HK Onyx Studio 4, which worked brilliantly with my old iMac, my iPhone and iPad. Now that I have the new iMac, it won’t connect to the speaker. Worse, in trying to get it to work, I’ve knocked out the connections to my iPhone and iPad, and have to start all over. Right now I’m not real happy because I miss my music.

I’ve a set of 2.1 (two speakers + sub) that I’ve had forever. Someone told me I have “the unicorn” of computer speakers. Its a Monsoon MH500 with planar flat panel speakers and powered sub. And its been working well since I got the set in the year 2000! I paid $60 for the set, and now, find the only issue is the remote-corded volume is oxidizing inside and creates static as you raise/lower the volume (worn potentiometer I would guess).
I think if I had to replace this when the external power brick fails (common death of this wonderful sounding setup), I might look for another power supply, since crossovers don’t fail, nor speakers unless over driven. The controller in yours likely has some component failing and as you, not an EE to open up and start running 'scope on components without schematic or previous repair expertise with the Altec.

That said, Klipsch has a 2.1 THX setup, as well as Logitech has some inexpensive but nice sounding products Z533 and Z333.

Now, this is just a fantasy suggestion, but there are some folks with healthy ears, great musical taste and “price is no option” wallets that Cambridge Audio has some speakers, a subwoofer, and separate amplifier w/DAC that would still be less than a fully loaded new iMac yet sound amazing!

See if you can fix this with contact cleaner.

Unplug the device, spray some cleaner in the potentiometer (hopefully you won’t have to disassemble much to get access to a place where you can spray it inside), then rotate the knob a bit to work the cleaner in. Then let it sit a bit for any remaining cleaner to evaporate.

Great options! I wish I could find an affordable battery 5.1 system with BT.


Thanks. I forgot I had can of DeOxit. But sadly, on opening up the Volume/Mute wire control, the plastic inside for the Mute button, fell apart from fatigue/age. The good news is, I sprayed DeOxit on the pot, worked the volume back and forth, managed to get it re-assembled sans some plastic bits (If I had time and a 3D printer, could make replacement) and no more static on the Volume. :grinning: :+1:

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I like Audio Engine and Vanatoo speakers a lot for desk listening situations…… But I don’t think they’re offerings are ideal for your situation. And the cost is up there.

So…. I’ve been really impressed by the Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX speakers that couple times I’ve heard them. And they are a tremendous value. Their sound leans towards a brighter character, but consider that you have the speakers aimed away from you and reflecting off the walls they woud probably be ideal.

You’ve probably already made a purchase, but if you have not (or for anyone else who might be searching for great computer speakers), I highly recommend the Creative Gigaworks T40 Series II.

They are just a 2.0 set, but unless you really want to have a thumping bass, they will elevate just about any style of music. They are not small speakers (though smaller than my bookshelf set) they are wider and deeper than your Altecs, but a bit shorter. They have two audio inputs, and the controls are conveniently on the right speaker (power/volume, bass and treble). Creative used nice, high quality knobs - there’s no static and the sound doesn’t cut out (at least at any level I’ve tried - and they can get plenty loud!) which is something I really appreciate after owning a pair of the Klipsch ProMedia 2.0 speakers - which had amazing sound quality, but awful shoddy components - I suffered through years of wonky volume adjustment with static galore and the left speaker cutting out unless the volume was adjusted just so… when they worked they were amazing, but after 12 years I decided it was time
for an upgrade.

The T40 has been a great replacement - and they usually are in the $99-109 range, so I think they make an amazing value for the sound they produce. I’ve heard that some people prefer the slightly smaller T20, which lacks one of the midrange drivers that the T40 has. I would imagine either set would make for great workstation listening.

Creative Gigaworks T40 Series II

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Reviving this as one of my Soundcores won’t keep a charge longer than 30 minutes anymore :(

I bought this pair in 2019

I listen to them primarily in my office, while working. I run music off an iMac sitting on the other side of the room (which is about 12x14). Once in awhile I will grab one and bring it to another room while cleaning. Unfortunately the BT doesn’t reach to the deck despite being less than 66’ away.

So I’m looking for a replacement with these requirements:
Must be battery powered as I don’t have a lot of power options in the room.
Must be BT or WIFI
Must be able to pair them for stereo sound

Really don’t want to have to use an app on my phone to attach something to a desktop computer but that seems to be the way of the world these days :roll_eyes:

Hope to find a pair for under $150

I was excited about the Homepod Mini’s until I found out they were powered.

If nothing else is out there I’ll just get Anker again but… I bought a single in 2016 and that one died by 2019. Now these are dead (they were having connection issues before the battery died). So far a 2022 speaker is still holding on but that’s 3 out of 4 gone. So as much as I normally like Anker maybe their speakers are just throwaways.


We have several UA Booms, both singly and in pairs, in the family. I bring one in my ancient car to boost the music from my phone. They’ve lasted for years in at least two instances. We’ve been happy with them, to the point where my daughter requested them over HomePods for her dorm this year. Mainly for the flexibility batteries afford, but also to stop conversations about whether Siri is listening to everything with her roommates.”too much work, Dad”.

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hah that’s a good point, I also don’t want to deal with Siri or Alexa.

Do you remember the models you have? A quick search shows $150 each (ideal I’d like $150/pair) but it looks like they have a smaller one too which I will try to research.

They are not on my initial comparison list from 2019


About 20 years ago I had a lovely set of Harmon Kardon computer speakers - 2 satellite speakers and a sub woofer under the desk, connected by headphone style jack. The sound was very, very impressive and I’d happily buy them again if there was anything comparable.

I bought a couple of Homepod minis thinking they would be similar but my experience with them has been terrible. The sound quality is average (at best) and operation through the vagaries of Siri is annoyingly inconsistent and frustrating. We have two in the house which aren’t used at all.

One of the few Apple products I’ve purchased which I would actively discourage people from buying.

I had a set of those and a bunch of the Altec ones over the years (in that 90s beige of course and I think I still have a set or two in the attic). Problem is they are all powered. I run the music off a separate machine that’s not on my desk. I absolutely do not need anything else on my desk! :grimacing: Homepods are out of contention since they are powered.


I’ve been down the speaker rabbit hole this week. I was going to get a set of Soundcore Mini’s but stumbled on the fact they do no pair in stereo. So that won’t work.

I also found this guys site - he’s a reddit poster and just ported his info to this new site yesterday.

He has a number listed as having TWS (stereo) and then in his comments he sometimes says no stereo as a con. So either his info is conflicting or the manufacturer claims stereo when in fact it doesn’t have it.

Considering my price point (I think pre-2021 it was a decent price point) I’m not getting very far.

I also considered buying one more Soundcore Flare to replace my failing one but of course, you cannot pair a 2024 speaker to a 2019 speaker. And as is typical with support these days, they pick one question to answer leaving me to reply and wait another day or two for another answer.

While I love music and can definitely hear the difference between good and bad speakers, I don’t have the cash for the high end pieces and I never play these loud anyway. I may just throw a dart at the wall and pick something.