Manufacturer: Logitech Part number: 970115-0403
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CNET editors' review
price range: $9.85 - $1,299.99
- Reviewed by: Nathaniel Wilkins
- Edited by: Rich Brown
- Reviewed on: 11/22/2004
- Released on: 09/29/2004
The good: Powerful, crisp sound; Dolby Digital, DTS, DTS 96/24, and PCM 96/24 decoder; wireless remote control; coaxial and optical digital ins; headphone jack.
The bad: Expensive; the sub could sound tighter.
The bottom line: A versatile set of high-end 5.1 speakers, Logitech's newest flagship will handle with near-perfect quality as many audio sources as you can throw at it.
by ussrpatriot on June 8, 2005
Pros: Fidelity, versatility, Finish
Cons: Imaging loose, rather large
Summary: I bought these speakers from OcUK three weeks ago, to replace my Logitech Z-560's, the amp of which having just expired after two years' use, having read extensively on ...
Summary: I bought these speakers from OcUK three weeks ago, to replace my Logitech Z-560's, the amp of which having just expired after two years' use, having read extensively on the Internet about the impressive performance on offer at the price.
On opening the massive box ( I am a national champion powerlifter, and this git was still no joke ) and connecting the system ( as others have said, easy as pie ), I was very impressed with the presentation of the system - minimalist lines, understated and subtle. The size of the control unit surprised me - bigger than the satellites at about 7 inches high. Very nice.
On firing the system up, after making sure everything was working, calibrating the soundfield and sorting speaker positioning, I began to play through some of my MP3 collection - mainly electronic, with a lot of prog, tribal, techno, psytrance, with some acoustic rock, and a little soul, choral and classical thrown into the mix.
I was immediately struck by the overdose of midbass at standard speaker settings - a problem shared with my previous system. However, unlike the 560's, this unit allows full, individual control of speaker levels, including the sub, with attenuation to 0 being possible. Setting the sub to 2 bars of 20 produced a FAR more balanced sound, with a full and tight bass sound, with a precise midrange delivery, and open,detailed highs, without being too bright. Note that my setup is nearfield, with no speaker being more than 1 metre from my head - in a larger room, the highs would probably be less impressive, with the one driver setup not really being suitable.
Sasha's Airdrawndagger sounded as enrapturing on this system as anything I have heard - the subtlety of the sound far exceeds my expectations, with dramatic dynamics sitting side by side with an enveloping soundstage and beautiful reproduction. On the lower setting, the sub was musical and smooth - however, the fullrange tweeters cross over at the mid 100 hz range, giving away the sub's location, although the sounds blended perfectly, given correct levels.
At high levels, the sub gives awesome dynamics, perfect for home cinema, or pissing off the neighbors, with a 32 Hz test tone still responding strongly enough to vibrate draws open and make the walls visibly resonate. However, it loses the musical quality that makes it so entertaining at more reasonable settings, with some port whistle and, at daft levels, clipping and mild resonance.
The sub's response rolls off slowly after about 60 Hz, according to my ears on a test tone sweep - however, output was still audible at default settings and half volume down to around 30 Hz. Below that, the resonant frequency of the driver manifested itself, with a 24 Hz tone sounding no lower. I would estimate the quoted 33 Hz response bound at around -10 db, in my smallish room. My 10 year old son could hear output at 19 kHz, although I myself could hear nothing above 17 kHz,almost certainly down to my ears and not the speakers. This is impressive, from a phase plug speaker - response from 160 to 19 kHz, with no obvious flat spots or rolloff from a sweep.
In home theater, these speakers delivered the depth and quality already touched on, with the LOTR:FOTR intro scene giving some real gut-churning LF sweeps and rumbles, although this required turning the sub level up. Dialogue is clear and well placed by the centre channel, with surround effects being reasonably well reproduced. Imaging was precise, as would be expected, but somewhat narrow, altough this is conceivably down to speaker placement. Adjustment is provided when decoding, but even maximum stage width still was less than ideal as far as I was concerned: however, this is a minor issue.
The piece de resistance was the analog sound quality, when feeding phono input from my turntables via a mixer into the direct jack input.
Quality through complex classical passages was breathtaking, for the price and purpose intended. The musical reproduction of the satellites was surprisingly good: smooth, open, and detailed, as with the digital media. Vocals, woodwind, and strings were all near perfect, without a harsh, monitor - like edge I disliked in the GigaWorks 750's. The crossover spoiled an otherwise strong performance when it came to brass, organs, pianos, and deep male voices - however, the quality was not compromised by this, and at the cost, it is a remarkably imposing system.
Overall, I would put these little speakers ahead of the Klipsch Ultras, with a more musical and less monitor - alike sound, far more flexibility and functionality with the decoder and upmixing control unit. That places them firmly at the head of their class, beating such offerings as Creative's GigaWorks 750's, and holding their own musically with far more expensive systems.
At the price they are being offered, I can recommend these speakers wholeheartedly to anyone who wants a versatile system, with input and decoding typical of a home theater system, but which is still musically impressive, whilst looking good and being relatively easy on space.
49 out of 49 users found this user opinion helpful.
MY EXPERIENCE: DEFINITELY NOT FOR MUSIC!
by paris18 on June 2, 2005
Pros: Good bass, sufficient quality, sufficient power.
Cons: Sound not clear, very much muffled : no treble!. Expensive for the quality.
Summary: After reading the many favorable reviews on Logitech Z-5500 on the Internet, I bought one set. Logitech announces that these speakers are multi-purpose, and I was planning to set-up a ...
Summary: After reading the many favorable reviews on Logitech Z-5500 on the Internet, I bought one set. Logitech announces that these speakers are multi-purpose, and I was planning to set-up a music center, with the self-amplifying speakers attached to a tuner and a dvd-player. To my surprise, the highly rated speaker system turned out a very bad sound when music is played: the sound was strongly shifted towards bass, lacking treble sounds, so that the sound from my popular music was very much muffled! I tried many music pieces I was familiar with: the sound had good strong bass, but the high notes (treble sounds) were absent, so that the sound was not clear, was muffled, and sounds that shound ring and chime (like high toned guitar, piano and violin sounds) were also totally muffled. The resulting musical quality was totally unacceptable to the careful listener. The subwoofer level adjustment on the speaker set was not of use for changing the tone of the sound produced: with this control,the sound went from slight bass, with no treble, to very strong bass, again with no treble. And there is no other bass/treble control or equalizer on this expensive unit. Then I tried the soundcard equalizer. After reducing the bass tones and increasing the mid-tones moderately and the high tones (treble) fully, things returned to normal. The speakers then produced good sound. Yet I was planning to use these speakers with a tuner and a dvd-player set which do not have bass-treble controls of their own (typical of these components), so the speakers were useless to me! I contacted Logitech telling them the problem and asking some specific questions, like the speaker impedances. They, summarily, told me that whatever Logitech wanted to say about the product is on web pages and brochures and they cannot answer any other questions!(Neither it seemed, that they did care my having problems with their product). Since Logitech did not answer any of my questions, I was unable to decide whether this problem is singular: a production error for this particular unit, or whether is typical of all speakers. Summarily, I am now after a court order for the speaker system to be returned, since retailers do not accept returns in Turkey. (I wish to point out that Z-5500 is sold for more than 600 US dollars in Turkey, including taxes). I wish to express my deep disappointment with the people who reviewed Z-5500 so favorably, with the Logitech Company, and with the Z-5500 itself. My rating of this system is 3/10 (poor). The hardware is there, but the necessary adjustments (the expertise, the thought part, an understanding of quality in sound reproduction, I should say?) are not.Updated
In this review I have described the experience that I had with the z-5500 system I have bought, in an effort to make others decide more easily what this system is like. Since I have written the review, I received many comments, whose sincerity I do not doubt, saying that the Z-5500 is a good system and that there must have been something wrong with my system. I have also followed the literature on Z-5500's. I am now made to believe that the problems I have described in the Z-5500 do exist, but in a rather slight form, and not as strongly as I had experienced them. The problems I have described terefore seems to be particular to the unit I have tested, a production error, and not general for the Z-5500's. This was a possibility I had indicated in the review. Unfortunately, Logitech did not answer my questions that could have clarified the situation.Please be aware that the review may not be general for the Z-5500 system, and many others find it to be a good system.
27 out of 44 users found this user opinion helpful.
Impressive system - with an extra surprise
by sinx on March 23, 2005
Pros: Crisp, loud, simple, good surround sound
Cons: Sub almost too powerful
Summary: Just bought the z-5500's, had resigned myself to the hard wired speaker option. I would have got the 680's (as they used exposed wire connections) but I wanted ...
Summary: Just bought the z-5500's, had resigned myself to the hard wired speaker option. I would have got the 680's (as they used exposed wire connections) but I wanted the most recent speakers.
Imagine my surprise when I opened the box and discovered that the wiring for speakers now uses exposed wire, not the RCA hardwired option that is still in the specs and has been mentioned previously here.
I'm in Australia and rang Logitech tech support to see what they knew. They said they'd heard about it but hadn't actually seen any of the upgraded sets. They hadn't even heard anything from Logitech head office about it.
Anyway, very happy with this surprise!
Oh, and the speakers themselves are extremely impressive. No regrets about making this purchase!!
The sub is almost too strong (can always reduce lower the strength), I've got a solid timber desk and I'm worried about the bass rumbling it apart (seriously)!
16 out of 19 users found this user opinion helpful.
My First and Last 5.1 Channel PC Surround System.
by startawar on June 8, 2006
Pros: Extremely deep bass, great mid-range, and good high frequencies. Brings DVD's, Games, and almost all music to life...
Cons: You cannot get full 5.1 experience without a 5.1 sound card....
Summary: OK... so I am 15 years old. I got a job almost a year ago, and this is the first item on my wishlist that I picked up. I ordered ...
Summary: OK... so I am 15 years old. I got a job almost a year ago, and this is the first item on my wishlist that I picked up. I ordered it from TigerDirect, and only spent $289 on it, waited a week to get it, and found it was well worth it. I had it up and running within the first 15 minutes of opening it, sat myself in the center of all the speakers, and put in the Matrix. I skipped straight to the infamous Lobby Shooting Spree, and was immersed in the middle of what felt like a real shooting spree. I could hear bullets flying by my head, and i could feel every squeeze of the trigger. I set up my sound card's EQ to an almost universal setting, for games, movies, and music... which took a while, but brought out the true power of the system. I had all of my family look at (or listen to) it. My neighbors, not only aside or across from me, but even a block and more away have heard it... and everyone has had great comments about it. Even one of the richest people I know, who just recently put a $6000 surround system (Polk Audio) with a $7000 Plasma (Pioneer) was impressed with this, somewhat cheap system, and asked me where he could by one for his living room! Bottom Line... This system is amazing. The comments made on the high-frequencies sounding muffled were posted by people who did not know how to properly operate this system. My brother, who is 8 can even turn down the sub level to a point where the highs are definately less than muffled... and everything is in perfect balance. And I am not being rude or arrogant by saying this... but if my 8 year old brother can make Green Day sound great on this system.. just using the simple volume controls provided in the control unit there is something with todays consumers and users.
7 out of 8 users found this user opinion helpful.
by fbxcore on January 16, 2007
Pros: Powerful, affordable, hardware decoding ability, optical/coax inputs, build quality, wall mountable good remote, aesthetically pleasing, POWERFUL bass, DTS, replaceable wiring, LOUD
Cons: Mids are a bit lacking, satellites aren't quite on par with the sub
Summary: Before I go into this I want to let it be known that I got the revised series of the speakers that use the home theater style clamp wire inputs, ...
Summary: Before I go into this I want to let it be known that I got the revised series of the speakers that use the home theater style clamp wire inputs, not the ones that are permanently attached.
Anyways, I went to fedex to pick up this package and it was pretty beastly. Got home and had some friends over and we installed it all fairly quickly with no hitches. Beware you need a good place to put the sub, where it will not be prone to shaking too many objects (i.e. desks with many drawers, file cabinets, etc..) It's huge as well and it's a good idea to give it decent ventilation for the warmer times of the year.
The first thing I noticed was the bass power of this system, it's pretty ridiculous. The port on the sub can practically double as an air ventilation system. Many people say that the sub gets really loose and sloppy but I haven't really had this problem, as long as you know how to EQ things correctly and adjust all of the levels you should be okay.
Either way this thing gets a 10/10 for the sub/bass
Next come the satellites. The most apparent dislike I have for this system is that the midtones can't really keep up with the bass and the highs, so that's a con in that area. Logitech should have gone with a different setup over the integrated tweeter cones. Other than that the satellites are pretty solidly built and as long as you have a decent output source (you'll be needing a fairly good sound card to get the best of these) your music should sound pretty good. I've noticed this system is EXCELLENT at playing ambient/classical and that sort of thing. Imaging is quite good.
Satellites get a 7.5/10 with all of the negative coming from the mid problems, but it's not a factor that would make me not want this system.
Next comes the control unit. It's pretty slick looking and has a display that your eyes will like. On top of that it has the optical/coax inputs which will be utilized when I get my new sound card in so i can use the hardware DTS decode option. It's well designed and laid out and you can control a lot from it. Same goes for the remote, it's very straightforward and you can pretty much control every aspect of the system from it.
Only hitch I have is that the control unit cable could be a bit longer, but it's not that much of a problem for me
Control unit gets a 9.5/10
Overall I'm very happy with the system. I'm hoping for a slight improvement when I get a new sound card in with an optical out and DTS Connect support and replace the speaker cables with monster cable, but either way with this system you can't go wrong for the money. I haven't had any of the popping problems that some people talk of.
Highly recommended, hope this could be of some help.
5 out of 5 users found this user opinion helpful.
best speakers i have ever heard or owned
Pros: Excellent sound quality, multiple inputs, decoders, and features and settings for almost every aspect of the system. Easy to use, easy to understand, easy to read. The subwoofer is absolutesly huge, and not just in size. The sats are quite descent in s
Cons: Control "Pod" could be smaller.
4 out of 5 users found this user opinion helpful.
Klipsch 5.1 Ultra and Creativelabs S700's sound better
by remotia on July 31, 2005
Pros: High output
Cons: Colored sound, Boomy bass, Digial decoder = Catch 22
Summary: The Klipsch 5.1's and S700’s both image better. They have better treble, more open sounded midrange, tighter and deeper bass (in the case of the ultras only). ...
Summary: The Klipsch 5.1's and S700’s both image better. They have better treble, more open sounded midrange, tighter and deeper bass (in the case of the ultras only).
The addition of a decoder is a catch 22 feature, but useless by most who buy this system. Most any DVD software supports a software decoder. Most any soundcard supports far better digital to analog converts than the Z-5500 decoder so therefore by using it, you're actually degrading the sound quality. Many of the newer soundcards even support a hardware decoder therefore completely overlapping the decoding feature on the Z-5500’s. The only true use for this would be for a console like an xbox, beyond that, a decoder only adds cost to the system for a feature that’s useless. I'm not going to award points for the decoder, if anything, it adds unnecessary cost in which case these speakers could be less money which would be more appropriate considering the Klispch 5.1's and Gigaworks S700's have superior sound quality. Therefore, if you’re going to pay 399 dollars for a pair of 5.1 speakers for your PC, both the Gigaworks and Promedia Ultra 5.1’s are better choices.
3 out of 4 users found this user opinion helpful.
In a word, SCARY!! Not for the timid or weak at heart!
by cplair on March 9, 2006
Pros: Everything about this system!
Cons: None what so ever!
Summary: I couldn't believe that Logitech could make the Z-680 system better. But they did! It's called the Z-5500! Being the owner of the Z-680 made me a bit ...
Summary: I couldn't believe that Logitech could make the Z-680 system better. But they did! It's called the Z-5500! Being the owner of the Z-680 made me a bit skeptical at first, because I wondered, how in the world do you improve on what is damn near perfect?
They started with the decoder. Your Dolby Pro Logic II, THX and DTS are recognized formats as with the 680's. But the 5500's also are now recognized with the newer DTS 96/24 format. This is a new enhanced DTS format that hasn’t even become a public standard yet! So out of the box, this decoder is ahead of the game!
The big complaint about the 680’s (and this was not a complaint of mine, because I had none) was the blue on blue lighting on the control pod making reading difficult. The 5500’s pod is lit with dark blue writing on a soft light blue back-lighting, making reading easier under all conditions.
The satellites were next. Polished aluminum phase plug drivers, cradled into a sweet molded slightly curved black casing. The natural posture of these satellites positions them into an upward projection. This means if you decide to stand mount them with telescopic stands, you may want to stand them lower because if their natural aesthetics. Also, the satellites come with swiveling bases for those who want to wall mount them. The center satellite is a horizontal configuration with a swivel base which can also pitch upwards and downwards as well.
They’re neat, but since I’m using floor stands with clamp mounts, the bases tend to bend under the pressure from the clamp screws. However, with gentle even torque on the front and back screws, this gives an evenly distributed and solid pedestal mount, without bending the base.
The speaker wire out of the box is sufficient, however we audiophiles’ like that thick “monster” cable stuff, so that’s what I’m using. I connected to my PC with the Monster THX optical cable to my Sound Blaster Audigy 2 external USB sound card’s optical connection, a COAX cable to my DVD and my TV runs from 2 standard stereo jacks to a single 3.5mm stereo direct input, which is normally used for the analog 6 channel direct. I am able to achieve stereo 2X for the TV and VCR connecting to what would have been the sub-center connection, but there is also a 6 channel / stereo mode toggle switch next to the optical connection. I’m also able to jam an “I pod” from the 3.5mm side mini jack.
This thing is versatile!
Now the biggest difference to me between the Z-680 and the Z-5500 is the sub woofer! The 10 inch “long throw” sub packaged with the 5500’s is unearthly, unholy and unimaginably deep!
The 680’s 8” direct fire sub will sure enough **** off your neighbor. The 5500’s sub will shake the entire neighborhood though!
Once everything was hooked up, I tested the 5500’s on a multitude of media, from high and low quality MP3’s of music from every genre, to THX / Dolby / DTS DVD’s, VHS tapes, a mini MP3 player and of course the television.
The sound is remarkable. Logitech really did do the impossible with this system. Go to Logitech.Com and click on the demo for the 5500’s. You’ll see a guy positioning his stand mounted speakers into the center of his living room, he turns the sound up, jumps over the speakers and proceeds to tunnel jump over the sound waves. That’s not far from the truth with this system. It’s not for the timid. This is for the audiophile who craves pure power and a lot of versatile connections!
I found this system brand new and fully warranted for $215 bucks! Beat that!
A small note, the stands used in the 5500’s demo can be purchased on eBay from the seller “Extreme1352”. The stands come silver or black, telescopic to 47” high, made from cast iron, 20 pound weigh capacity and complete with 3 types of mounts for around $39.95 a pair. I own 5 of them and the included clamp mount works to perfection for the 5500’s!
My bottom line, the rest of the world is still playing “catch up” to Logitech!
2 out of 2 users found this user opinion helpful.
The best bang for the buck
by paindoc66 on July 14, 2005
Pros: Excellent sound quality and connectivity options
Cons: Would like more digital inputs
Summary: I've owned quite a few home theater setups. You cannot beat the quality of this product for the price. Reading the other reviews I have to laugh because people ...
Summary: I've owned quite a few home theater setups. You cannot beat the quality of this product for the price. Reading the other reviews I have to laugh because people always want more!! For the price you can't expect to adjust every aspect of tonal quality. And who has the time to do it!! This is a great computer based 5.1 system that I've converted into a complete home theater system that rocks. Simple to setup and does the job. I have my DVD player utilizing the optical input, my cable modem using the coax and my ipod using 1/3 analog. It's great, highly recommend.
2 out of 2 users found this user opinion helpful.
Great for saving $$
Pros: The great many inputs that this speakers has. I connect my htpc, dvd player, and vcr into the control pod, very convinient.
Cons: Sound value? Just average at best if you listen to music. There is next to zero mid frequencies. There are the high and the low. I tried configure the eq but not much improved. Since human voices and hearing are most sensitive @ mid frequencies, these sat
2 out of 2 users found this user opinion helpful.
- Manufacturer: Logitech
- Part number: 970115-0403
- Description: Logitech has taken its award-winning Z-680 speaker system and made it even better. How? By improving everything from the subwoofer to the satellites and adding new innovations like real-time digital sound equalization. The result is the Logitech Z-5500 Digital, a THX-certified, 505-watt 5.1 surround sound speaker system that offers everything you could possibly want... and some things you didn't even know you needed. And once you plug in your PC, DVD or music player, or video game console, you'll never want to listen to anything else.
- Speaker type PC multimedia home theater speaker system
- Speaker type Satellite speaker,
Center channel speaker,
- System configuration 5.1-channel
- Speakers included Subwoofer,
- Amplification type Active
- Woofer size (inches) 3 in
- Nominal output power (total) 505 Watt
- Max (RMS) output power (total) 1010 Watt
- Response bandwidth 33 - 20000 Hz
- Input impedance 8 KOhm
- Signal-To-Noise ratio 100 dB
- Output level (SPL) 115 dB
- THX certified Yes
- Audio amplifier Integrated
- Connectivity Wired
- Built-in decoders Dolby Digital,
Dolby Pro Logic II
- Controls Input selector,
Center volume control,
Rear volume control,
Subwoofer volume control
- Detachable grilles Yes
- Connector type SPDIF input ( RCA phono ),
SPDIF input ( TOSLINK ),
Audio line-in ( Mini-phone stereo 3.5 mm ),
5.1 channel audio line-in ( Mini-phone stereo 3.5 mm x 3 )
- Driver details Satellite speaker : 1 x Full-range driver - 3 in - Aluminum
- Driver details Center channel speaker : 1 x Full-range driver - 3" - Aluminum
- Driver details Subwoofer : 1 x Subwoofer driver - 10"
Compatibility | Accessories
- Included accessories Audio cable kit,
- Cables included Audio cable kit
- Power device Power supply
PC Speakers (Extended Specs)
- Cable(s) Included Audio cable kit
- Cables type Audio cable kit
- Full contract period 2 years
- Power device type [Feb 24, 2011 from CDS: Power Device] Power supply
- Service & support details type Limited warranty
- Service & support 2 years warranty
- Service & support details Limited warranty - 2 years