|Logitech Z Cin¨¦ma Advanced Surround Sound System--2.1 Speakers
|List Price: $299.99
Our Price: $74.99
You Save: $225.00 (75%)
- Box Content - 2 satellites, 1 subwoofer Speakers, Wireless remote control, USB cable, AC power Cable (each 1.8 m), CD-ROM with Logitech Z Cinema software, and User's guide
- 110-watts RMS into 4 ohms at 45Hz Subwoofer
- 26-watts RMS x 2 into 4 ohms at 335Hz Midwoofer
- 9-watts RMS x 2 into 16 ohms at 17.4khz Tweeter
- System Requirements - Windows XP Media Center Edition, Windows Vista Home Premium Edition, or Windows Vista Ultimate Edition, USB port, CD-ROM drive, 256MB RAM, and 20MB free space
- Very good speaker for $80.00
Nice sound good price. The software has crashed once in the first day of use. I sent the event log message to logitech. Hopefully they will fix this. The speakers do not work with Windows 7 yet, it would be nice if the could support the beta operating system. Everybody else seems to already have their drivers working with Windows 7....more info
- Good speakers with great sound, perfect for PC with Windows Media Center.
Logitech's Z Cinema Advanced speaker system was incredibly easy to set up and has exceptional sound. I have an Altec Lansing speaker system with a similar set up and Logitech has a far superior sound. The speakers themselves are very well designed and slick looking with their black and silver colors. They are also very solid and sturdy and look like a quality product. They connect to your PC through a USB cable and have a separate power supply.
This system is just the right system to use with Windows Media Center as it provides an integrated access to all your audio and video players. To use all the features of the included remote you need to install the provided Logitech software on your PC. Once you install the software the speakers are instantly recognized by your PC and can be used with all your applications. The software is also very simple to use and has some neat graphics with large fonts that can be viewed from a distance.
The subwoofer is really powerful and the satellite speakers have a mid-woofer and tweeter which is why the sound is clearer and brighter than a traditional speaker and subwoofer system. The surround sound works well too, and the sound is loud enough to fill a large room. Watching movies on your LCD monitor is fun as these speakers will add the necessary punch. The only addition that I would like in these speakers is to have more ports, for e.g. an HDMI port so that I could use them with my HDTV if needed.
- Nice Speakers
I recently bought these speakers because after shipping they were 120USD. Provided these were still 300USD plus shipping I would probably not have even looked at these speakers.
I would like to start with how the speakers look. The speakers are elegantly designed and look expensive even though they aren't.
Now the sound; they sound amazing considering they were only 120USD. For 300USD I would expect a lot more out of them. I had a previous set of Logitech speakers that were amazing but this particular set blows the others out of the wind. The biggest compliant I hear is that they don't get loud enough. I will tend to agree with that. These speakers don't get as loud as they should considering they are 180 watts.
Last, the remote. Logitech has making remote controls down. This control is simple enough to understand and I haven't had any distance issues using it in my room. It is designed so it can stand vertically; this is a nice little detail that adds the speaker sets elegance.
My final verdict is if you still can get them cheap then buy them. They are worth it. If you they are full price you would be better off getting Logitech Z-2300 set....more info
- I'm Impressed!!!
I wasn't too sure what to expect out of Logitech's "Z Cinema". I've never been a huge fan of Logitech's products in the past & this surround sound system has a pretty hefty price tag. After easily installing & hooking the speakers up to my PC though I can honestly say...I LOVE THEM!!! I never would've expected such crisp sound. I can have the volume peeked & have absolutely no distortion what so ever(though I'll never need to have my volume turned up as, IT'S REALLY F'N LOUD!!). I listend to a few seperate genres of music just to make sure that there wouldn't be a drastic change in sound & out of Electronic, Rock, Country, & Hip Hop they all sounded great with crystal clear clarity. I don't know how helpful the rest of this review will be as the majority of this info is already on the product page. I'll give it a shot though :P
The package includes:
2 - Two-way Satellite Speakers with Laser-Tuned 3" Ventilated Midwoofers & 1" Textile Dome Tweeters
1 - 8" Long-Throw Subwoofer In A Tuned Bass Reflex Enclosure
1 - Media Center Remote Control
You'll also get a USB cable for connecting to your PC & the software installation disc. You'll just need to position your 2 smaller 2-way satellite speakers to the right & left of your PC on your desk or office space & then place the subwoofer somewhere below your monitor & you're in business. The really nifty part of this package is the remote control included. There's a whole ton of features that'll come in really handy to anyone. Here are some of the features:
- A center dial for adjusting volume, bass, treble, center & surround levels
- Multimedia Track Controls (including a record function)
- 4 Presets (for playlists & favorite internet radio)
- Windows Media Control
The Windows media control is a really cool feature that (when a TV tuner is installed)can help you navigate Windows Media Center, Recorded TV, Live TV, DVD Menus & toggle between full screen & windowed modes as well as many other features. Also note that remote is not needed as you can pull up all of this info directly on your PC screen with easy to use access to all of these features.
In closing, there's not much more that I can say that you won't be able to read about on the product page as far as specs & what not. All I can say is, I love this speaker set up. I wish I'd have gotten one sooner & I think anyone even remotely interested in picking up one of these sets will be pleasantly surprised with just how well these speakers sound. These will be great for home or work. Do youself a favor & treat yourself to Logitech's Z Cinema, I'm sure glad I did....more info
- An Awful Doggone Good Speaker System
I have hours and hours of Bob Dylan music on my hard drive, tons of Stones too. I'm also a huge fan of the Blues, have Billie Holiday everything. I'd marry Eric Clapton in a heartbeat and I swoon when I hear Jim Morrison, have everything the Doors have ever done. Do you get the fact that I'm a girl who really, really loves her music.
Enter the Z Cinema Surround Speakers. Jeez it couldn't have been easier hooking these guys up. Plug in the USB cables, plug the subwoofer into the wall, plug the stereo speakers into the subwoofer and bingo, you're good to go.
The sound on these babies is extraordinary, it really does sound like sound is coming from all around, just like the picture on the box. The bass is deep, the treble clean. Bob Dylan's throaty voice sounds as throaty as it down on my home stereo system. Well, maybe not that throaty, but my stereo system cost thousands more.
It is funny how I've really become a Logitech girl lately. I've got the Logitech AudioHub Notebook Speakers which I drag with me when I'm on the road, so I can rock out in hotels and motels around Ameica. And I've got the Logitech Squeezebox Duet hooked up to my McIntosh Amp, getting music of my Macintosh Computer. I give all of these Logitech products five stars. Any company that delivers stuff like this sure has my vote.
Reviewed by Stephanie Sane...more info
- Best Computer Speakers!
When I first opened the box, my first impression of these huge, heavy speakers was, "Wow, I'll bet the sound that comes out of these is massive."
Yup, I was right. The sound IS massive. I was used to my dinky little Dell desktop speakers, but now there's no going back. Every sound that comes out of my computer, from music to streaming video to gaming, sounds crystal clear. I had no idea music could sound so good.
The set-up was idiot-proof with the Quick Start Guide and installation disc. The remote works perfectly for controlling Windows Media Center, DVD menus, and even a TV tuner if you have one.
Basically, you want great sound, and these speakers deliver that in an impressive fashion. Watching a movie with the Surround Sound is a whole new experience for someone like me who has never had a Home Theater set-up. These speakers go a long way in making over my PC into a true entertainment center....more info
- Great sounding speakers
These are the best speakers you can get for the price. They work great in my system (PC, Quad core, Vista premium, 3gb mem, 1.5TB hd, HDTV card, HD monitor) I run a lot of applications at the same time and the speakers don't give me a bit of trouble. They work great with Media Center. I really like the remote. I can crank up the volume and there is no distortion at all. The instructions could be better, but that is the case with all instructions. ...more info
- Logitech Z Cinema Advanced - High-End Speaker System for Media Player PCs - Definitely worth a look!
Logitech Z Cin¨¦ma Advanced Surround Sound System--2.1 Speakers
Logitech's Z Cinema Advanced speaker system is an incredibly designed high performance product. I own several Logitech speaker products, as well as others by Creative Creative GigaWorks T20 2.0 Speakers, Altec Lansing Altec Lansing FX5051 5.1 powered speaker system with USB connection, Klipsch Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX Certified Computer Speaker System (Black), Harmon Kardon Harmon Kardon SoundStick II 3 Piece Speaker System, and others. I can honestly say, this is a very impressive unit that is well designed for its task. If you have a media center PC setup, this set will make you very happy. Not only is the speaker system ridiculously powerful, the included software is a huge improvement over previous Logitech entries. The included remote rounds out the system and puts virtually all your audio and video applications at your fingertips.
This speaker system will fill a key market niche. The integrated satellite speaker and subwoofer design has more components than meet the eye. Each one-piece satellite speaker has an integrated mid-woofer and tweeter. So these are much more than traditional 2.1 bookshelf speakers. And when you position the speakers as directed and turn on the software surround sound, the sound quality coming out of these approach that of 5.1 systems.
+ Control your media center PC with a great all-in-one solution and awesome remote
+ Great performing speakers with a ridiculous 35 watts of RMS power per channel, 180 total RMS output
+ Beautiful black and silver speaker and body design
+ Two tweeters and mid-woofers deliver surprisingly crisp sound with or without surround
+ 110 watt subwoofer is simply monstrous and easily fills large rooms with good acoustics
+ Awesome included remote with media center controls and great features
+ Nice integrated support for apps like iTunes, WinAMP, RealPlayer, Yahoo Jukebox, Pandora and Picasa
+ Remote can be configured to work with any multimedia app or to launch a different media player
+ Very sturdy cables and housing are designed to last a long time
+ Power converter integrated into subwoofer so you can connect with a regular power cable
+ Good looking orange back-lit volume and surround indicators on the right speaker
+ Very nice price point for fully integrated media center speaker system and controls
+ USB cable connection is clean and easy - requires on-board port connection
+ Included standard ports for headphones and auxiliary connections (3.5 mm)
+ Simple instructions and plug and play performance for basic use
+ Very modest hardware, hard-drive space and memory requirements for Logitech software
+ True 24 bit digital audio
+ hardware warranty
- Perhaps overly sleek minimal design could have been improved with physical power and volume controls
- Very heavy system requires extreme caution and should be installed with care and help if needed
- No simple volume controls on the remote, instead included in adjustment wheel
- Would have been ideal to include a few more ports, such as HDMI and S-Video, on the subwoofer
- Satellite speaker cables, while very thick, could have been longer for more configuration options
- No real expandability of the system is apparent; no obvious ports for other satellites or devices
- Many people still demand RF remote capability, this one is only IR
- Those who don't need the remote for Media Center PCs may opt for 5.1 systems at this price
Installing this guy is simple based upon the included quick start guide. What's cool is that even before the Logitech software is installed, once you make your connections and turn it on it's automatically recognized as a regular speaker system. You don't need Windows Media Center for this to work as a speaker system. This is awesome, and amazingly a lot of the Media Center buttons still work too.
But just note that in order to really take advantage of this guy you will want a Media Center capable PC, with either XP MCE Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 SP2B for System Builders, Vista Premium Windows Vista Home Premium with SP1 or Vista Ultimate Windows Vista Ultimate with SP1 installed.
Installing the Logitech software allows you to have desktop control of the speaker settings, including enabling surround sound. It also allows you to see the options to toggle between the different media applications, including iTunes and WMP among others. You can change settings and really get some control over your MC PC.
Physically installing this guy can be a challenge. First of all, this is a very heavy unit, mainly because of so many integrated components built into the subwoofer body. This is probably a sign of good construction, but handle with care.
The satellite speaker cables are long but could have been longer. The included diagrams give you the impression this was really well thought out for desktop or workstation installs. However, if you have a component center or cabinet for your stuff, you need to be patient and creative to get this set up.
The speaker cables could have definitely been longer to accommodate more setup possibilities. However, in terms of durability and shielding, these are some of the thickest strongest cables I've had come with a speaker system.
The subwoofer body has a silver rimmed front-piece that is not flush with the body housing. It's not a huge deal, but you have to kind of set it up either with the front piece hanging off your component shelf or rested up at an angle. Perhaps this was intentional based upon the lower configuration location noted in the included diagrams.
The power level output of these speakers is sick, to say the least. Some will be hung up on the "simulated" surround sound feature, a gimmick that has been tried before. Still, even though I was initially unsatisfied, I learned that if you set these up in the right acoustical setting it does perform well. There are two possible setups. For the basic workstation setup where you are literally seated at your media center PC, it works awesome. For those, who like me, want to set this up at an entertainment center, you have to center the system in a somewhat square room with unobstructed walls. Then you can get the surround sound feature to properly bounce in your room.
The total RMS power of 180 watts includes a 110 watts RMS Subwoofer with each satellite speaker producing 35 watts of RMS output via the mid-woofer and tweeter pair. That means your total power output is something like 400 watts, which is really in AV power range.
But the sound is clean. The built in amplifier is well tuned for multimedia sound applications, including gaming. If you have a good on-board sound processor, you should be fine. If you experience any sound effects, definitely take a closer look at your hardware and setup.
Some may feel that you can only get surround sound out of 5.1 Logitech Z-5500 THX-Certified 505-Watt 5.1 Digital Surround Sound Speaker System or 7.1 Onkyo SKS-HT540 7.1 Surround Sound Speaker System systems. Still, I prefer 2.1 system with high quality components over 5.1 systems with small and disappointing satellites. There's a lot of nice 5.1 systems out there, don't get me wrong. I own several. Still, this system sounds better than a lot of those. Definitely have to test drive it to hear the difference.
The power adapter is nicely integrated into the subwoofer, so you power up via a standard plug, no power bricks so many people hate. The speakers have right and left noted on the bottom. The right speaker comes to life when you turn it on with the remote. It has a nice orange read out that shows when it's on, the volume level and surround sound setting. The right speaker also includes jacks for headphones and auxiliary connections.
I really wished they would have also added physical volume and power control buttons and knobs. That way, when I want to hook up one of my MP3 players, I wouldn't need the remote to turn it on.
The Logitech software is actually vastly improved for them. I've not always liked some of the integrated software in the past, but this one was a huge improvement. The only minor negative I can give it is that it is automatically included in the startup folder even if you install the software with the option of not turning on at startup. So you have to manually remove it from your startup if you don't want it on all the time, a minor inconvenience.
The remote is the nicest part of this set functionally. For those with Universal remotes, you may wonder why you need this. This remote allows you to access your multimedia apps seamlessly. You can set up 4 presets, though it's less than intuitive.
You've also got some basic navigational buttons that allow you to go back to your previous app. There are included buttons for shuffle and repeat plays, and multimedia controls including the standard play, fast-forward, rewind and record. The Windows Media Control button launches Media Center, but can be configured to launch another application.
Once again, I would have preferred simple volume up and down buttons on this remote. Instead the made volume adjustment the same as treble, bass, center & surround levels.
If you don't have a TV tuner hooked up, you must set one up upon buying this. Being able to navigate through live and recorded TV with this remote is awesome.
Overall, this is a great set. You have to play with this one for a while to really appreciate how great it is. Test drive it today and see for yourself.
- Definitely a step up in my audio setup at home...
I recently received the Logitech Z Cin¨¦ma Advanced Surround Sound System--2.1 Speakers system through the Amazon Vine program. I thought it'd be a great replacement for my 5+1 surround sound speaker system on my computer, with all those pesky wires on the floor. Although it took me a bit to get it working (user error and issues), I'm quite pleased with the results. Great sound, nice interface, and more more wires to run over with my chair.
The subwoofer is where all of the wiring interface occurs, and that's where I had most of my self-inflicted problems. First off, I plugged it into a dead outlet. That explained why it was taking the USB so long to be recognized. Then I had a bent pin on the connection to one of the two desk speakers. With some gentle pressure, I was able to get that straightened out and the plug connected. I also had to reseat my left speaker connection as it wasn't kicking out any sound. But once I got all that taken care of, I was impressed with the sound and interface.
The system comes with its own remote control that is set up to work both with the speakers and with Windows Media Center. The layout is clear and the buttons are labeled such that there's no guesswork as to what button(s) might be doing what functions. I really like the volume control, which is a rotating ring in the middle of the remote. It's calibrated well, in that you don't get massive volume changes by barely touching it. The on-screen interface isn't quite as nice as the remote, but it's perfectly adequate to run the speakers if you don't want yet one more remote laying around.
The speakers accomplish a "surround sound" effect by positioning the output of the two desk speakers. For me, this is what I enjoy the most. Before, I had the five tweeter and midrange speakers surrounding my desk, and there was no good way to deal with the speaker wires. Now, I just don't have any wires to deal with as I only have the two units on my desk (with the subwoofer underneath). All the great sound with none of the mess.
Bottom line, I'm very impressed with what Logitech has done here. It's a high-quality sound system that avoids the wiring mess. It's another very impressive offering from the company....more info
- Spaghetti Western
These are computer speakers and require a USB connection and software installation to work. Now that your expectations are aligned, let me get down to the Good, the Bad and the Ugly.
- the software installation and USB connection eliminate the need for a sound card, one less thing to generate heat in your system box, and with the multi-core processors available now there should be limited or no impact on your system speed
- there is an MP3 player jack on the side of the right hand speaker (you provide the cable) to connect you iPod, etc. to play music without the need for PC interaction
- the set comes with a remote, I guess for use if you output to a bigger screen or want to control you music play from a distance
- sound at low volumes is crisp and clear, and at least subjectively better than the Creative speakers I had been using
- at louder volumes the subwoofer thumps in strongly, and the volumes continue crisp
- the surround sound is somewhat eerie while gaming, I can almost feel things bearing down from behind me (5.1 or 7.1 is still probably a better choice for simulated reality, but for economy of space in a room not devoted to the computer, these speakers stand up well)
- these speakers are 2-3 times bigger than my Creative i-Trigue L3500 set and suitably heavier (I was a little scared when I saw the heat sink on the back of the subwoofer, until it became clear that the power supply was built in)
- the remote is as bigger, heavier and clunkier than my Logitech Harmony 550 remote
- the cables are limited to 6 feet in length and have specialized connections to the subwoofer, so expect to keep them fairly near you system
- you can play music from an MP3 player without the PC setup, but you have no control over volume, etc. without the PC/software, as a result these speakers would not be a good choice for a stand alone iPod setup
- installation may or may not proceed smoothly, mine did not, the support helpdesk had me plod step by step through scripted troubleshooting and gave up on me after just a couple of steps suggesting that I make a toll call to their support number (after first suggesting that I call Norton, without providing any substantive reason).
[note this was the formal support system, I found that I was able to get much more knowledgeable help off the Logitech forums, indeed they took ownership of the problem until a resolution was discovered (even after we had determined that something in the configuration of my system was responsible for the problem), kudos Logitech gang and my thanks for the help.]
Bottom line, these are excellent speakers, a bit large for a devoted PC setup, but well suited to the integrated entertainment system that many PCs are developing into with PVR, TV tuners, movie systems, direct play from Netflix, ..., you get the picture. I think I will keep them.
- Another Logitech Success
I've had this sound system for several weeks, now. I've used them for just about everything possible with great satisfaction. As they said, the computer usb connection is not quite as good as using right and left channel cables. Also, I find terrific results with the Harmon Kardon TL8500 CD changer. This is a better player than the Dell player. This system sounds like you are actually there with the orchestras, choirs, organs, rhythm and blues, Jazz, Vocals, Whatever. (not to mention sound effects.) Occasionally I have to dial back on the bass at full volume to eliminate distortion from the mid-range. It all depends on the recording.The highs are crystal clear.The UV remote works well until I interrupt the signal with my hand or head; then, everythng goes silent and has to be reset. Don't panic. There's nothing wrong. All in all, it's a great system and highly reccommended. You will not be disappointed....more info
- Decent sound quality in an easy-to-install package
In this day of advanced surround sound technology, it seems to be getting impossible to find a good computer sound system that does not include rear speakers which are often difficult, if not impossible to install (and never have cables that are long enough even for a small room). There are a variety of systems now with wireless rear speakers, but most do not seem to get very good ratings for sound quality and reliability, so hard to justify the expense. I could not but help feel nostalgic when I saw these speakers with "simulated" surround sound as I used something very similar many years ago, before 4.1 and 5.1 systems were commonplace and those were a favorite set of speakers. However, I was expecting a bit more out of these Z Cinema speakers now that some years have passed and the technology hopefully improved.
The hefty size of the box when it arrives tells you this is no dinky, underpowered set of speakers. The subwoofer is quite sizable and you'll want to make sure you don't have it flush against a wall or desk to allow for proper venting. It puts out 110w which is pretty hefty (although lower than what the subwoofer on my 5.1 Logitech system will do.) The two satellite speakers are pretty sizable, each with a 3" midwoofer and 1" tweeter and 35w output. As seems to be typical for computer speaker systems, the cables aren't long enough to allow much flexibility in placement. This is a bit problematic with this system as they are proprietary connections so not easily extended. The real surprise though is when you go to hook up the speakers and find that it's nothing more than a USB cable...the speakers have their own integrated audio codec processing, so there's no need for a sound card on the computer. That could certainly save you some money up-front when purchasing a new system, if you know you want to use these speakers. As it is, at least you can still free up another slot (or two depending on your sound card) in your computer and save on some additional heat generation to boot. This does mean you *must* install the Logitech software though to control things like volume, channel and tone levels and the SRS surround sound control. The on-screen display for these controls is kind of ugly, but functional (and can be disabled if you wish).
The other main component to this system is the remote control. This is designed specifically for Windows Media Center and indeed a computer running Media Center or Vista Home Premium or Ultimate is required to make full use this speaker set, so clearly this is a good portion of what you are paying for. If you have a computer that you want to use as a Media Center and don't already have an IR controller and/or remote, this is indeed a great package to get this functionality added. I am using Vista Ultimate and have all my media on this computer, and find the remote works great as long as it has a completely unobstructed line of site to the right speaker. It doesn't seem to take much to block the signal, so it would have been great if it had been RF instead.
So how does it perform? The sound quality of these speakers is really quite excellent. You can go to full volume and will find very little distortion or buzzing. With music, the volume is quite adequate, but I did find when watching video or movies that I could have used a bit more volume, particularly to really fill the room with that simulated surround sound and/or for the quieter sections of the movie. Also, as a bass-lover I would have preferred being able to pump up the bass more than the system allows, it doesn't quite seem to really give you powerful bass that shakes the floor. The simulated surround sound is nothing to write home about, but it's better than a typical 2 speaker system. It certainly doesn't rival a true 5.1 system, but it's probably the best 2.1 system I've tried, and the SRS does definitely add more ambiance to the sound and makes it less directional than a typical left-right stereo sound. Still, you definitely don't have those "wow" moments as you do with real surround sound, that trick you into looking behind you to see the cat that meowed or bird that chirped. The thing to keep in mind as well (and this should be obvious) is that the surround sound it generates is only really effective if you are fairly close to the speakers. You can't for instance, sit in a chair at any distance from them and expect to get much surround effect, the way you would if you had rear speakers in the room. This does seem a bit in conflict with having a remote control for handing Media Center, which you would typically be using from across the room. Suffice to say, different users will probably find different elements of this speaker set that really draw their interest. In my case, I am using my computer mainly as a media center, and particularly to play music while working on my other desktop system, which often is running very resource intensive processes that make music and video playback jumpy and not very pleasant. So the remote control feature is something I was particularly interested in. Even if you aren't using Media Center, the remote is reasonably customizable, so for instance, you can have "Music" open something like iTunes instead. However I found some things like the 1-4 presets rather difficult to modify, not sure why you can't configure them in the software as well. I also was really happy to find that the remote worked fully with my personal favorite music/video software program which is J. River Media Center. This software really blows the pants off the Windows Media Player/Media Center combo, particularly with its awesome "Theater View" mode. I just configured it to start up in Theater mode, set the Logitech software to run it instead of Media Center, and it was running beautifully. I did quickly turn off the Logitech on screen display as it kept telling me there was "No Player Configured" but I was quite pleased to find this worked so well without too much effort. Really my only gripe with the remote is that it doesn't have a button to close and/or minimize the Media Center (whatever application you are using for it).
Overall, these are a very solid set of speakers with some unique features that many users will enjoy. The price is pretty steep for a 2.1 system so if you can handle wiring up a 4.1 or 5.1 system and really want great surround sound, I'd probably recommend going that route. If you are limited on space though and don't want the hassle of trying to wire rear speakers, these might make a very nice choice. ...more info
- Better than expected!
I did quite a bit of research before buying these, and my main worry was that they would not be loud enough. Let me just say, that I was not at all disappointing with how loud they can go. I got these to blast music at a party (15-20 people in 650ft apt), and at only half volume it was almost painfully too loud! Now I don't want to mislead anyone...because I too have had issues with the sound with some programs. When playing music through Zune, the speakers can go incredibly loud and not distort at all. However, when using Windows Media Center (as well as a few other dvd programs) the speakers max out a pretty low levels. Now I'm pretty savvy with computers, and both the software volume, as well as the system volume are at %100, and still it's not that loud. It's fine if you're sitting right in front of the computer, but not from across the room. I don't know why Zune can go so loud, but WMC cannot? I thought it was strange, but hey...I'm just passing this info along.
I love the look of the speakers, although the speakers themselves, as well as the sub are much bigger than I had thought. They look modern and expensive though, which is what I love. The only thing that truly annoys me is the software that comes with the speakers, it's so intrusive and annoying to have it pop up every time you push something on the remote. You can turn off the software display, but not permanently...you have to do it each time you start your computer.
The sound is quite nice...for a 2.1 system, it is by far the best I have ever heard. The surround feature is def. not a replacement for a true 5.1 setup, although it does add a noticeable side feeling, and I feel makes the sound a little clearer. It's perfect for someone like me who lives in a smaller space, and who doesn't want to constantly upset neighbors. Although believe me, these suckers can upset the neighbors if you want them to.
I guess in final, these speakers are fantastic with Music (from Zune anyway), but only okay with movies and WMC. If you can figure out how to get around the volume issue, these would be perfect speakers! Overall though, it's a great value and a great set of speakers. I would purchase them again!...more info
- Powerful and versatile PC audio system
The remote control is quite ergonomic and easy to use. The Z Cinema does not require XP Media Center Edition or Vista to work with games and music players. XP MCE is required for full functionality of the remote, namely the buttons that control MCE functions. However, the remote allows you to control WinAmp and iTunes by skipping between songs or fast forwarding within a song. I found this feature to offer a convenience that many other generic remotes never featured. The dial control is the most interesting part of the controller. You press the black button in the center of a dial to select between volume, treble, bass, and SRS controls while the rotating dial is used to adjust the settings. The remote control accepts two AA batteries which are included.
The left and right speakers each contain a mid-range woofer and a tweeter. The speakers use proprietary cabling to connect to the subwoofer and amplifier assembly. The ported subwoofer is the largest, heaviest, and most bulky part of the entire system. My biggest complaint would have to be the right speaker having too short of a lead. I had to relocate some of my equipment in order to accommodate the huge subwoofer so that the right speaker could be connected.
The sound quality is extraordinary. The high notes are crystal clear, and the mid-range gives a lot of punch. The bass is extremely subtle at low volumes but you can hear the thump. At higher volumes, the subwoofer really flexes its muscles. I found this behavior to be synonymous with the factory subwoofers and audio system in my car.
The Z Cinema is capable of producing sounds at loud levels and I know this from accidentally setting the volume too high using the dial, or from some software quirks. Applications like PowerDVD remember their previous volume setting and if you're listening to MP3s while testing applications, the volume could potentially be raised to a deafening level. If anything, I would have liked the Z Cinema software to overrule any audio settings for software applications to prevent this accidental shift in volume settings. It is unnerving to enjoy MP3s at a comfortable listening level only to have the audio suddenly spike up to the max because a software application like PowerDVD remembered an old setting.
The infrared interface is integrated into the right speaker which has a series of LEDs that light up various indicators. When the system is turned off, the satellite speakers look like black monoliths.
I did notice some odd echoing and clipping while playing music through iTunes. It could have been some DSP effect or iTunes adjusting the volume settings independently of the Windows sound system. For normal MP3s, the sound is extremely clear and crisp. For gaming, I found the system to be nothing short of extraordinary. The high notes are so clear that I can feel every rumble strip and tire spin in Race 07 WTCC. The 4-cylinder engines scream like banshees at 8500 RPM and the shrill sounds are replicated accurately via the mid-range woofers and tweeters. When another car passed me, I could almost feel the sudden gust of air.
Coolness: After playing around with the settings, I discovered that the remote control could access player functions within other applications. For example, while playing Battlefield 2, I can use the remote to control the WinAmp playlist. This is a big benefit to many games that don't offer custom in-game music, or for games that don't allow control over tracks while inside the game (Race 07 WTCC allows custom MP3s but there's no way to skip to the next song).
Pros: Outstanding audio performance. The highs are clear, the mid-range is punchy, and the subwoofer "thumps" when the volume is turned up. The sleek and modern finish of the speakers is impressive. The right speaker looks like a black monolith until it is turned on. Amber LEDs illuminate cut-outs for various icons on the speaker.
Cons: The satellite speakers are larger than the average PC speaker but are not incredibly imposing on desk space. The right speaker wire/harness needs to be at least 6" longer so the subwoofer can be placed more "strategically". The subwoofer is incredibly large for a PC audio system, but keep in mind it was intended for a Media Center PC system that would be placed farther away from the audience.
Bottom line: Outstanding build quality and impressive fit and finish. The ported subwoofer enclosure feels like it is made of wood with composite panels or another resonant material. The system is heavy. The UPS delivery person fumbled a bit with the package due to its weight, and I don't blame her. I recommend getting some help if you're not up to the task. It is an outstanding speaker system for a media center in your living room, and works just as well for gaming or listening to music on a desktop computer. The remote control makes life easier!
Update: I noticed the Z Cinema program/service would frequently crash while playing certain games like Call of Duty 4. Once this occurs, it can freeze up the game and prevent the remote control from controlling the audio levels. In addition, the Z Cinema system suffers the same problem as other software/USB-based speaker sets. Sometimes applications remember their own volume settings or decide to change the audio level to a deafening volume all by itself....more info
- Great Quality
They are very, very heavy (we had to carry them up five flights of stairs and, trust me, it wasn't fun), so if weight it's an issue, you might want to think twice about ordering this. But as far as the product itself, it's hard to find anything to complain about the Logitech Z Cinema. It's a great way to build your home-cinema system and enjoy any kind of audio with great quality and resolution....more info