The two speakers share a single cord that plugs into the output jack in the back of the subwoofer. An included 3.5mm cord plugs into the adjacent input jack. The other end plugs into the auxiliary output or headphone jack on your PC or mobile device, or you may connect the system via Bluetooth if you prefer to be untethered. The power cord is attached to the back of the subwoofer, so you don’t need to worry about misplacing it.
Once the sub is plugged into an AC outlet, all you have to do is flip on the power switch. Everything is controlled from a panel on the front of the sub. A pair of knobs control the volume and bass level, respectively. Beneath these is a “pulse” button that activates the LEDS. These glow steadily until you crank the bass past 80 percent of maximum, then they’ll pulse with the music.
Given the big subwoofer–and the name of the system itself—it wasn’t surprising that the bass stole the show in my testing. However, it tended to bleed into other frequencies. Dialing down the bass knob added a little more clarity, but the bass had more or less the same boom quality whether I was playing rock, jazz, or EDM. The midst and highs were more distinct, and the sound never distorted even with all knobs cranked to the limit.
The pulsing lights, however, were a major disappointment. Maybe I was expecting too much, thinking they would operate more like a dance floor strobe, but even with the bass cranked they produced nothing more than a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it flicker like you might experience in a brownout. Frankly, they work better as a light by which to navigate the speaker controls in a darkened dorm room than an ambiance-enhancer. The BASSPULSE may over-promise on its lightshow capabilities, but it’s a good speaker system for the price. Most users will notice a definite sonic improvement over their PC’S built-in speakers, with enough power to fill a small room whether you’re listening to music, gaming, or watching a movie.
LOGITECH Z150 STEREO SPEAKERS
$22 from go.pcworld.com/z150