View Full Version : Newbie Guide to Components

08-23-2004, 12:32 PM
After alot of Research..from a nonbaised view and an an honest approach I have come to the conclusion that there are 3 types of components..And in a way, one is better than the other. I have discovered that components fall into Price ranges to determine thier sound, of course there will be a few exeptions, but I have found this theory to be an Excellent Rule of Thumb for Newbies as I once was and so was everyone else. These prices are the MSRP prices..not the EBAY price some of us can get!!

1)$175...First of all It is a waste of time to buy components that retail below $100, if you are going to buy components, atleast have $100. These Speakers are "entry level", with a few"nice" sets that stand out. You will be getting essentially the same quality accross the board.

2) $200-$400....I have found this is the Category for "everyone". Of all the speakers I have heard or priced, The components between $200 and $400 are probably the "BEST" you can get. Most quality speaker companies hold very little back from the customer once you reach this speaker budget. Most of us fall under ths group and I can "rarely" tell the diffrence from the more expensive ones.and these..,YOU WILL spend hundreds more for "basically" the same quality. Speaker companies may hold back thier "little" better speakers for more money..But You can get the best quality out there for $400, don't believe otherwise

3) $500-+. This is the Cream of the crop that we all desire...But Why..I believe that for 90% of us these speakers are simply $400 speakers with a few extra tricks that companies try and grab the "32 year old rich .com owner with a new Benz". YES. Some components in this range are AMAZING and have a sound better than hearing the Prom Queen saying "Yes". But from MB Quart, Boston Acoustics and others, Don't get caught up in the concept that it takes "$750" to make Amazing Speakers". Dynaudio was the only exeption I found to this theory with most of thier stuff above $400 to start.

Really what I am saying and it's a No-Brainer for some Veterans is "YOU TAKE A BIG STEP UP IN SOUND QUALITY FROM $150 SPEAKERS TO $350 SPEAKERS, BUT YOU ONLY GET A LITTLE BETTER WHEN GOING FROM $350 TO $600"".
I am not an Expert (no ****) but I am coming from that Audio phase where I was open to any Speaker out there and Wanted to get the Best. But realistically I would be wasting my money on anything above $400.

Of course the Best Deal is when you can get those $500 Speakers for $299..thats what all of us should look for!! And I will get replies claiming "So and so brand" is Amazing for $800 and I do not know what I am talking about"..But Speaker companies are Business's...And they have practices..For $250..you will get the quality that company is known for, Save the $700 and get some Cd's.

Just my ultimate "personal" Discovery on what Components are really all about

08-23-2004, 01:01 PM
It's always that way in ANY audio... There's a definite factor of diminishing returns once you get into the higher price points.

08-23-2004, 01:30 PM
Cost doesn't mean anything. Be it a high price or a low price ("budget" speakers or "entry level" they are sometimes called). You can buy the best speakers money can buy, but if you install them incorrectly or don't take the proper installation and tuning steps, then they'll sound like **** and probably sound worse than those "entry level" speakers setup properly. A properly setup pair of "entry level" speakers can easily outperform more expensive sets not setup correctly.

When you are talking about components, the installation will make a larger difference in the sound than the speakers. And don't confuse "entry level" with "sounds bad". If you take your time and setup and install "entry level" speakers, they can sound **** good.....but they can also sound **** bad if you don't install and tune them correctly (just like anything else). So don't think you have to dish out large amounts of money to get very good sound.

Also, that doesn't take into account DIY (do it yourself) component sets using home audio drivers. By using Morel, Vifa, Peerless, Audax, Soundspeak, Usher, LPG, Max Fidelity, etc etc you can get $100 worth of speakers to outperform $500 "pre-built" component sets any day of the week.

Moral of the Story:

So, basically what I'm trying to say in this rambling rant is that price isn't a very clear indicator of performance (high price or low price) and that installation and tuning is the most important factor and can "make or break" ANY set of speakers, regardless of cost.

Also, go with what sounds good to your ears and don't worry about what us internet people say :)

**hops down off of soapbox**

08-23-2004, 01:53 PM
Just my ultimate "personal" Discovery on what Components are really all about[/QUOTE]

Great post! This is should remain at the top of the forum to keep things in perspective. With so many subjective opions for "brands names", "model types" etc. it's difficult for a newbies to know how to begin their search for speakers. It's takes alot of reading and corresponding to get an idea of what direction to take, especially if you don't have to overspend. This provides a good base of knowledge.


08-23-2004, 02:19 PM
Cool..Yea I just intended that as a GOOD Refence. I have been looking for Components for years, Made Many diffrent choices in that time and this was my experience and I stick to it. I agree with you..The problem with Forums like his is that EVERYONE chimes in with a biased opinions on what to buy..sometimes it gets ugly..people back thier speaker choices as if it is thier favorite sports teams..We all have different tastes..some like BASS..some like Metal...And Everyone thinks "thier" choice is best..I found that it's really all dictated by price ranges not manufacturers "all of the time"

Again..just my thesis after going through what many are just starting out to do and need "some" concrete advice regarding selection. not loud voices Telling you what ***** and whats great! On other forums I have seen speakers get trashed that everyone on this forum votes as the best.
Good Luck

Basically I think If you want Good Speakers REGARDLESS OF MANUFACTURER..Buy $200 to $400..you rarely can go wrong..even if it's not the best choice in that Category..you won't lose with that criteria..I didn't

08-23-2004, 02:34 PM
On other forums I have seen speakers get trashed that everyone on this forum votes as the best.

Welcome to the world of internet boners ;) Every forum has their "favorites" that get recommended every time and get recommeded above most everything else. On this forum it is CDT and Kicker subs (which I don't personally care for, but whatever). That's why you should normally ask a speaker question on 3 or 4 different forums.....that way you get more of a general consensus rather than a somewhat more "biased" viewpoint.

08-23-2004, 03:04 PM
Thanks squeak..I am about to get CDT based on opinions on here!!!!So I guess I am a hypocrtite!!!!!
But I did alot of research and I think the CDT's I am getting are gonna work fine. I got a great price I cannot turn down. I see CDT get some good reviews elswhere.Especially the Car Audio Mags.


08-23-2004, 06:36 PM
install is def where its at........and appropriately, a high quality set deserves nothing short of a high quality install

So I'll keep eyeballing the day when I can throw in some Rainbow Platinums in a worthy vehicle- Lets not forget, regardless of price range, its about YOU being content with your setup , and making the best choice for your budget- one mans chevy, is another man's Bentley

08-23-2004, 07:12 PM
I agree 100%. I guess thats what I was trying to get at..If you buy a $300 set and it sounds like crap it's because of the install not the speakers (USUALLY)

08-23-2004, 07:17 PM

only for my bestest buddies ;)