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At home my PC has a pair of Altec Lansing BXR1220 speakers which I've been using for around 5 or 6 years. I have had them so long that I don't even recall where I got them from although Amazon is generally a safe bet in our house. I suspect they may not be readily available any more as Amazon today has only one private seller who is asking for a ridiculous amount (101 pounds) so most likely they have been discontinued. I probably paid around the 20 pound mark, unlikely to be more than 30 so if you can find a second hand pair on eBay, give them a go.
I use my speakers for general home computer use. I don't play games and it's relatively rare that I use them for music but they often come into service for watching films and streaming television.
The speakers plug into the USB port and don't have their own powersource. For me that's a good things as I'm always running out of sockets. Stylewise, I think they're a bit retro in shape and appearance with simple stands at the front and a tubular design. There's a power button on the back of the right hand speaker and a volume control and I mostly use these at quite low volumes where the sound is crisp and clear. They tuck neatly into the space under my monitor and don't clutter up my desk.
You won't be using these for loud, wild parties and it's unlikely you'll have to shout over them, but for personal use at your computer, they are perfect. They stand 3.7 inches tall, 2.8 inches wide and are 4.8 inches deep. If you wanted to, you could take them with you on your travels although I'm sure there are smaller ones available these days and these would probably be considered a little too bulky. Since these replaced a massive set of all speakers from an earlier computer, they still seem positively miniscule to me.
We purchased these for a recent camping trip as the site had wireless network and our laptop speakers are very poor. Found these for £13.00 delivered on Ebay and after reading a few reviews we hit the 'buy now' button. The speakers were delivered a couple of days later and we set about plugging them in to the laptop for a demo. First thing that is cool about these speakers is the fact they are USB powered so you do not worry about electrics or batteries. The speaker cable you get is not very long and will allow you to place each speaker about 50 cm away from either side of the computer which is fine for us. You use a headphone jack to plug in to the corresponding input and after adjusting the volume dial on the back of one of the speakers away you go.
The sound you get from these is never going to be 'full' in the hifi sense although I have to say for the price I was very impressed. OK, bass isn't the fullest but it is there and adds a good balance. All other aspects of the sound are fine, detailed highs with well balanced mids the speakers are fine for laptop use, we used for iTunes and DVD playback. Volume is good and doesn't seem to distort at higher level range. Please bear in mind that I use Myriad amps, Arcam CD players and Monitor Audio floor standers at home so I appreciate my sounds!
The size of the speakers is compact enough, think 2 coke cans and you wont be far off. They have their own little stands which are not adjustable. I have experience of a nice little pair of Logitec speakers which are even more compact and sound as good although they are £25 +. Overall I would recommend these speakers for the price, you cant really go wrong, just don't expect floor pounding bass tubes!!
These speakers, which I received for Christmas, are the best thing to have been plugged into a USB port. Although relatively small, 12 cm long with a diameter of 7.5 cm, are very powerful. I rarely have to turn the volume above 20 per cent on the very convenient dial to listen to music or watch a film. However, when the volume on these speakers is turned up fully, which I only did as a test, and instantly regretted it, the speakers buzz considerably and are, fortunately or unfortunately, deafeningly loud. It is a real shame that the speakers buzz at higher volumes, since the sound is otherwise crystal clear. The cables on these speakers are very long, which means that they do tend to tangle but I'm sure that if you want them as desktop speakers (I use them for my laptop) that would not be a problem. Being powered by USB and receiving sound through a regular headphone jack means these speakers are universally compatible, with no software needed. One more minor problem is that, due to the positioning of the DVD drive on my computer and positioning of cables on the speakers requiring me to set up the speakers only one way round, left and right are reversed, which is highly irritiating for surround sound films.