Orb Audio 5.1 People’s Choice Home Theater Speaker System Review
With our media becoming effortlessly connected, our televisions constatntly upgraded and our media-formats in a state of continual flux, it can be easy to overlook the real value of home-audio equupment. So many products just blend together in a sea of stats, promotions and brand-names. Almost to the point that many of them become indistinguishable. This is something that Orb Audio has no problem overcoming.
Everything about the minimalistic and industrial designs of the ‘5.1 People’s Choice Home Theater Speaker Sytem’ was constructed to be as minimally invasive to your home, as it was crafted to be unique. The brand-name itself is derived from the speaker’s shape; which are small, lightweight circular ‘orb’ speakers. All of which are available in a wide-array of finishes and designed to highlight your current system. I enforce the highlight because the pieces will not overtake it by consuming too much space or by being too bulky or heavy for wall or ceiling mounting. In one word the entire system could be described as simplistic, if you are fan of either the minimalist or industrial designs that I mentioned before, I would imagine that you would instantly enjoy the Orb’s unique take on sound-design casings. Since the speakers are so small and so easily mounted anywhere in your home or on your desk, they are the perfect match for any media source. A small pair could takes up almost no real-estate on your desk, while an entire system could effortlessly blend into an entertainment system or living room. If you have the means and are a stickler for fluidity, there are artistically perfect stands and mounts designed to turn any room into a luxurious virtual soundscape.
I’ve spent a few weeks with the ‘People’s Choice Home Theater Speaker System’ running tests (televisions, Hulu and Netflix options off a PS3, to even slimming down the total speakers and running them off an iMac and Macbook Pro,) I tried to recreate any situation and platform, that someone would want to incorporate such a large purchase. I wanted to know if it was a hassel to switch up the inputs, if it would perform just as well in my living room with hardwood floors, as opposed to the smaller bedroom (damn you NYC).
You get a lot of options with the system, many of them cosmetic but a few that really help you adjust to your situation. The system features three Mod2 satellite speakers for your front left, center and right audio channels. Then you can customize the system with either two, three or four Mod1 speakers for your rear channels. This will allow the system to be compatible with any 5.1, 6.1 and 7.1 receivers. Then you have the Super Eight subwoofer with Mod2 Satellites in each front channel. This is one of the greatest pieces in the collection, and will easily perform just as well as anything else in its price range on the market today, and even outperform some of the really overpriced brands that exist in today’s market.
The Subwoofer is such an important component that I want to talk about is separately. Customers have the choice between the 200 watt Super Eight and the 300 watt Uber Ten. Both have exceptional sound, offering the deep, sharp, concise bass that you would want in a film or from a stereo. Starting at the lower-end with the Super Eight, it was designed specifically to match the Mod1 and Mod2 satellites and are included in all of the speaker systems. The Super Eight features a 200 watt BASH hybrid amplifier rated to peak at over 400 watts, with an 8″ woofer and a high-power magnet. For the general to experienced audiophiles, this is still the perfect fit. For someone that is extremely sensitive to sound vibration though, I would suggest checking out the Uber Ten to compare notes. This is for the top-shelf connoisseur, the man or woman that can name pitch, tone and frequency of everything that he or she hears, and has to have the best in sound equipment. The Uber Ten features the 300W BASH hybrid amplifier, a unique to the brand 10″ driver sitting inside a 13.5″ frame. The company isn’t trying to one-up your purchase in any means, in fact they even say on their website, that the Super Eight “is the right subwoofer for at least 90% of our customers”. The Uber Ten was added simply because it was requested to match higher demands, only you can decide if you fit into that category but it’s nice to see a company being so upfront about its designs and targeted users.
Rated at over 115W power handling you shouldn’t have any problems connecting the set to an existing home theater receiver that you may already own. Special notes include that the Mod1 and Mod2 satellite speakers feature gold binding posts, high-power neodymium magnets and oxygen-free internal wires. If you consider yourself an audiophile, then these things matter. To the general public, I can tell you that the parts are top of the line choices.
I talked about the design options available and there are quite a few, ranging from the base price of $1,098, the sets can come in Gloss Black, Pearl White, Hand Polished Steel ($240 option), Hand Antiqued Copper ($240 option) and Hand Antiqued Bronze ($240 option). The Mod2 sets are also available with optional HOSS designer floor stands which are also compatible with the BOSS desk stands. I should point out that all speakers that are not being wall mounted or placed on BOSS or HOSS stands will receive a free basic steel desk stand that still looks very eloquent on a desk, side table or entertainment system. The floor stands are merely a preferred choice I believe for a more discerning taste.
One important fact that you should know, is that the Mod2 satellites come with a five year limited warranty, and an instant 30 day satisfaction guarantee. It’s nothing that should surprise you, but it’s a terrific selling point for people that have been burned by larger retailers.
In the end there is a lot to love about the system. The fact that the speakers are so unique and so non-intrusive, allowing them to truly blend into any home. The sound produced is top-quality, highly specialized and incredibly controlled. Whether you are running a top-of-line receiver or if you are simply updating a current system, it’s the perfect fit for so many options. The idea that you can mix-and-match the system is also a huge benefit, allowing you to upgrade to more components at a later time, knowing that the design is something that is universal and a trademark, so it shouldn’t be replaced or hard to upgrade in the future. Setting up the system takes minutes, it’s so efficient and the stands, racks, mounting brackets and wires are all the best quality and only speak to the attention that Orb has put into the system.
You can check out the entire line, compare systems, notes and features all on the website below. I strongly suggest you add the Orb to your comparison list, and see how well they stack up to event the most expensive brands.
more info: orbaudio