Powered bookshelf speakers

Jeff Schmidt

Jeff Schmidt

Junior Audioholic
My wife and I bought a Sonos beam soundbar for our bedroom about a month ago. We were tired of using the TV speakers that had to be turned up so loud to hear speech that it was disturbing my daughter in the next room at night.

At that time the TV was on its stand and a soundbar was really the only option. I liked that Sonos was Alexa compatible so I bought it. Well I have been less then impressed with it’s sound quality and clarity for movies. No HiFi through Tidal, very buggy with Alexa etc etc.

Well I convinced the Wife to hang the TV and get a pair of “Aesthetically pleasing” bookshelf’s. Using one of my extra AVR’s is not an option due to WAF. So powered bookshelf speakers are my best option. Problem is I know jack squat about these kind of speakers so I was hoping to get some opinions from folks on here on what would be best.

Mainly would be used for streaming shows and movies through Apple TV with some occasional music streaming through Tidal HiFi. Alexa compatibility would be great as well, but not a deal breaker. Connecting to a Sony XBR 950G. Don’t have a big budget probably about $500 maybe a little more. Any help is appreciated as always.
 
everettT

everettT

Audioholic Ninja
My wife and I bought a Sonos beam soundbar for our bedroom about a month ago. We were tired of using the TV speakers that had to be turned up so loud to hear speech that it was disturbing my daughter in the next room at night.

At that time the TV was on its stand and a soundbar was really the only option. I liked that Sonos was Alexa compatible so I bought it. Well I have been less then impressed with it’s sound quality and clarity for movies. No HiFi through Tidal, very buggy with Alexa etc etc.

Well I convinced the Wife to hang the TV and get a pair of “Aesthetically pleasing” bookshelf’s. Using one of my extra AVR’s is not an option due to WAF. So powered bookshelf speakers are my best option. Problem is I know jack squat about these kind of speakers so I was hoping to get some opinions from folks on here on what would be best.

Mainly would be used for streaming shows and movies through Apple TV with some occasional music streaming through Tidal HiFi. Alexa compatibility would be great as well, but not a deal breaker. Connecting to a Sony XBR 950G. Don’t have a big budget probably about $500 maybe a little more. Any help is appreciated as always.
If your TV dosent have analog outs you will need a A/D converter. The JBL LSR series and the recently reviewed (here) Kali Audio LP 8 would be my first choices. They are just powered speakers, all streaming would be through your TV
 
everettT

everettT

Audioholic Ninja
I'll note that you can probably get the LS50 from KEF used for $800 and it includes streaming options, but realistically the two above would be more cost vs performance effective.
 
Jeff Schmidt

Jeff Schmidt

Junior Audioholic
If your TV dosent have analog outs you will need a A/D converter. The JBL LSR series and the recently reviewed (here) Kali Audio LP 8 would be my first choices. They are just powered speakers, all streaming would be through your TV
No analog on my TV for sound. A/D converter could be an option if it was small and could go behind the dresser the TV sits above. Can’t put another box on the dresser. I barely getaway the soundbar and Apple TV that sits on there now. Lol. My main setup is a lot and the Wife doesn’t complain so I have to toe the line on this a bit.
 
everettT

everettT

Audioholic Ninja
No analog on my TV for sound. A/D converter could be an option if it was small and could go behind the dresser the TV sits above. Can’t put another box on the dresser. I barely getaway the soundbar and Apple TV that sits on there now. Lol. My main setup is a lot and the Wife doesn’t complain so I have to toe the line on this a bit.
You can find a tiny D/A on Amazon and probably mount it to the back of the TV

Like this
 
Jeff Schmidt

Jeff Schmidt

Junior Audioholic
Nope. UPS says Tuesday for delivery. Between Corona and living on a Naval base it takes forever to get packages these days. Ordered some stuff from Amazon this last Saturday that I still haven’t gotten. Tough times. Lol.
 
Jeff Schmidt

Jeff Schmidt

Junior Audioholic
Well I got the Five’s today. They look great. Took some pictures, but won’t let me attach from my phone so I’ll post tomorrow from the computer when I have a chance.

Started with some music and they have a nice detailed sound with a ton of bass. Pretty amazed with how much great sound comes out of such a small speaker. Even after reading many reviews I was pleasantly surprised.

Then I hooked up HDMI through ARC on my TV and so began my frustration... I eventually landed on these speakers because of thIs function specifically. Basically plug and play with ease of a soundbar, but with much better sound. Well there is NO sound through HDMI ARC what so ever. I’ve tried several cables, messing with the TV audio out and nothing. Worked just fine with the Sonos and while I’m not a professional installer I’ve been into audio and HT for many years and have a pretty good handle on hooking up electronics. So I decided to give the optical cable a try. That works and sounds pretty good, but probably not as good as HDMI would. The really frustrating part is without HDMI I have to use the controller that came with the speakers and you have no idea where the volume is at because it doesn’t display. This wouldn’t be a huge deal, but when you hit the volume button there is a delay. So I will give Klipsch a call tomorrow if I can and see what they have to say. If I can’t get it figured out, they will likely go back in the box and returned. Bums me out because I’ve really been looking forward to getting these.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Seriously, I have no life.
Well I got the Five’s today. They look great. Took some pictures, but won’t let me attach from my phone so I’ll post tomorrow from the computer when I have a chance.

Started with some music and they have a nice detailed sound with a ton of bass. Pretty amazed with how much great sound comes out of such a small speaker. Even after reading many reviews I was pleasantly surprised.

Then I hooked up HDMI through ARC on my TV and so began my frustration... I eventually landed on these speakers because of thIs function specifically. Basically plug and play with ease of a soundbar, but with much better sound. Well there is NO sound through HDMI ARC what so ever. I’ve tried several cables, messing with the TV audio out and nothing. Worked just fine with the Sonos and while I’m not a professional installer I’ve been into audio and HT for many years and have a pretty good handle on hooking up electronics. So I decided to give the optical cable a try. That works and sounds pretty good, but probably not as good as HDMI would. The really frustrating part is without HDMI I have to use the controller that came with the speakers and you have no idea where the volume is at because it doesn’t display. This wouldn’t be a huge deal, but when you hit the volume button there is a delay. So I will give Klipsch a call tomorrow if I can and see what they have to say. If I can’t get it figured out, they will likely go back in the box and returned. Bums me out because I’ve really been looking forward to getting these.
As far as current ARC/HDMI capabilites, they're generally equal between HDMI and optical/toslink except perhaps for metadata for Atmos with DD+
 
Jeff Schmidt

Jeff Schmidt

Junior Audioholic
As far as current ARC/HDMI capabilites, they're generally equal between HDMI and optical/toslink except perhaps for metadata for Atmos with DD+
Yeah I agree with that and with 2 channels it probably doesn’t matter much. I just like the functionality of having it hooked through HDMI so I can control the volume with the Sony remote instead of the one Klipsch provided. Plus the speakers won’t turn on and off automatically when the TV gets turned off. I have an email in to Klipsch to hopefully get this resolved.

Don’t get me wrong they sound and look great and I want to keep them. Truthfully they have a bit too much bass for our little bedroom so I hooked a sub to it to route the LFE to the sub instead and turned the sub all the way down for watching TV at night. It is an old crappy Def Tech sub I had lying around so I may get a newer sub with a small footprint and an app for control to replace it. That way I can use the sub when I want it during the day and turn It off at night so I don’t disturb the rest of the house.
 
Jeff Schmidt

Jeff Schmidt

Junior Audioholic
Looking at maybe a SVS PB2000 because of the size and app control. I’m a Dual HSU VTF15H MK2 owner in my main HT, but they don’t have anything small enough to appease the WAF so any other recommendations are welcome.
 
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surfacetension

surfacetension

Enthusiast
Just a hunch but have you tried to factory reset your TV? Sort of a last resort after triple checking that everything is configured correctly - HDMI cable connected to ARC port, CEC enabled on TV, sound mode set to PCM/stereo, and toggling each of those settings off then back on. Then I'd turn off the TV and unplug it from the wall and let the caps drain, maybe 30s, and turn it back on and re-check.

Having done all that I'd unplug the speakers, do a TV factory reset (maybe check if there's a newer FW update for it too first). If it still doesn't work after all that then it would seem to either be a defect or incompatibility with the TV. Have you tested it on the living room TV?

That sucks though, these seem like perfect bedroom speakers to me, though I really wish it included wifi streaming, especially for the price. If you could stream to them over Airplay they'd be pretty much feature complete.
 
Jeff Schmidt

Jeff Schmidt

Junior Audioholic
Just a hunch but have you tried to factory reset your TV? Sort of a last resort after triple checking that everything is configured correctly - HDMI cable connected to ARC port, CEC enabled on TV, sound mode set to PCM/stereo, and toggling each of those settings off then back on. Then I'd turn off the TV and unplug it from the wall and let the caps drain, maybe 30s, and turn it back on and re-check.

Having done all that I'd unplug the speakers, do a TV factory reset (maybe check if there's a newer FW update for it too first). If it still doesn't work after all that then it would seem to either be a defect or incompatibility with the TV. Have you tested it on the living room TV?

That sucks though, these seem like perfect bedroom speakers to me, though I really wish it included wifi streaming, especially for the price. If you could stream to them over Airplay they'd be pretty much feature complete.
I had to go out of town for work so I didn’t have a chance to move them to another room with a different brand TV, but I was planning on trying that when I get back. If that doesn’t work I will give a factory reset a try though. Thanks for the suggestion.

Still haven’t gotten an email reply from Klipsch and I’m too busy at work during their short Support hours to call. Does suck if they don’t work as advertised, but like I said they do sound really good and I will probably just keep them one way or the other. If I have to keep them as is I will get a small sub I can control with my phone to make it better suited for me.
 

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