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Shaking the foundations

india Updated: Feb 26, 2011 02:30 IST
Siddharth Basrur
Siddharth Basrur
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

This THX certified 2.1-channel speaker set takes up a substantial amount of space. The satellite speakers aren’t that big at 7.8x5.6x5.4 inches, but the subwoofer is massive, measuring 11.9x11.1x10.4 inches. The controls for the speakers are on the right satellite speaker, although both speakers have to be connected to the subwoofer individually.

The left speaker has a regular RCA-type cable, but the right one has this thick cable that looks a lot like a standard computer VGA cable. Connections The back of the subwoofer has two connections for the left and right speaker as well as a 3.5 mm headphone input and a stereo RCA input for when you want to hook it up to your DVD or Blu-ray player. The wires can get a little messy, and they are fixed. So if they do end up getting damaged, it’s bad news. However, they seem to be pretty sturdy and should last for a couple of years by the looks of it. One important thing this system lacks is a remote. If nothing else, a basic volume control would’ve been nice.

Performance
We were impressed on plugging device to an iPhone through the 3.5 mm jack. The music was loud and clear. Even after pumping up the volume to maximum output, with the bass setting on full, the speakers did not rattle or distort. What we really liked about the Z623 was the tight, well-rounded bass sound. Even though the satellites deliver 35W each and the subwoofer pulsates at 130W, the overall sound levels aren’t loud enough for our liking.

But there’s a startling difference on connecting the speakers with an LG BX580 Blu-ray player if you want to listen to audio CDs. It gets a lot louder, and the sound distorts over the 70 per cent mark. But on playing a movie, the volume was normal again with no distortion.

Further tests
We also ran a few test tones through these speakers, and it seems like they really start to perform at around 63 Hz. The struggle to reproduce frequencies below this is quite evident.

These speakers are also THX certified, which sets standards for movie theatres and surround sound gear. Now, of course, they’ve expanded to accommodate systems such as this one, which aren’t surround sound capable.

THX certification isn’t something any company can apply for and receive immediately. The product to be certified has to go through a rigorous testing procedure, and only if it passes all the tests, does it gain the THX tag. These speakers wear the tag proudly.

Verdict
At the market price of R11,000, the Z623 is not exactly cheap, but it definitely belts out high quality sound. We don’t think you’ll get too many other 2.1 speaker sets in this price range that sound this good. So if you look at it that way, the Z623, though expensive, does provide value for your money. We give the Z623 a good rating, as the speakers sound great with music and movies. And even though the speakers aren’t cheap, they provide excellent value for money. The system loses points for the lack of a remote, bulky cables and the fact that the sound jars when pushed towards the peak. But all things considered, the Logitech Z623 is definitely worth keeping.

What we like
Really good sound
Value for money
Nice design

What we don’t
Cumbersome cables
No remote control
Sound starts to distort at high levels