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What The Best Sound System For Your PC?

Active speaker sets are generally used for the PC. Active means: they are loudspeakers with an amplifier built-in. Therefore, such box sets also have their own power supply. For the connection to the PC, a jack plug (3.5 millimeters) is usually provided, which is technically nothing more than the plug of headphones for MP3 players or cell phones – and also in terms of the sound signal, which is not based on digital data, but rather on small analog current fluctuations that later make the speaker membranes vibrate. Therefore, you can also connect normal headphones to the PC audio output, or connect a PC box set with a jack plug to the headphone jack of a common smartphone. You can also use numerous speakers for the PC.

For example, there are many speakers as accessories for tablets or smartphones that are connected to the headphone output as just described and therefore also fit to the audio output of a PC. Wireless speakers, for example with Bluetooth, can only be used on the PC if the PC offers the appropriate transmission type, for example a Bluetooth stick for USB. Hifi boxes that are passive and therefore do not have their own power supply cannot be connected directly to the PC. An amplifier or AV receiver is always required here, which in turn is connected to the PC. Some PC box sets also offer digital connection options like sound cards.

Stereo or surround speaker set?

Basically, you are faced with the choice of using stereo or surround sound for the PC. In stereo you have a box on the left and right front, possibly a subwoofer for the bass (see for the best subwoofers). In stereo box sets with a subwoofer, it is typical that the two speakers are rather small and therefore offer too little bass themselves. One also speaks of 2.1 here: two speakers, one subwoofer. For stereo sets without a subwoofer, the term 2.0 is therefore also used – of course, the bass is not missing here, but it is taken over by the two speakers.

Surround sound is theoretically available in several versions from at least 4.0 (one box in each corner). There is no upper limit in theory, but the most common surround sound setting is 5.1, i.e. five speakers plus a subwoofer. Based on your seating position, this means one speaker on the left and one on the front and one at the back, one speaker in the center in the center, and a subwoofer. Thus, the corresponding noises in films with the appropriate surround sound signal or in games always come from the direction from which they should be correctly heard with the current camera view.

Surround sound via loudspeakers is rarely useful on a PC unless you start with a home theater setting. Otherwise, if you want to spend less than 150 euros, you will only find 5.1 box sets under 100 euros, i.e. less than 20 euros per box. We clearly advise against this and rather recommend a stereo box set for the same price, with which you won’t be able to use surround sound, but you will enjoy a sound that is better by several classes, which brings much more advantages than a poor quality surround sound.

For more than 150 euros, there are only three to four speaker sets on the market that offer surround sound and are intended for direct connection to the PC. But here, too, the sound of an equally expensive stereo system is clearly superior, although with these slightly more expensive 5. 1 sets get a decent sound for their money. However, if you want the best possible sound, we definitely recommend buying stereo speakers and, for games in which locating your opponent is important, headphones or a headset.