Page 3 - Usage, Performance, Conclusion
Setting up the Logitech G51 wasn't hard, it's all plug and play -- but as a cabling 'enthusiast' I had quite a bit of fun pulling the cables around my room as well as bundling them up under my desk with the attached Velcro straps on each wire. A while later, it's all good to go and the Logitech G51 is ready to rock for what's it's designed for. Three speakers in front, subwoofer under, and two speakers behind me for what 5.1 is supposed to mean.
Tested with the Auzentech X-Fi Prelude sound card, we've had no problems unleashing the potential of these speakers with arguably the best consumer sound card available in the market today. But let me tell you this -- if anyone tells you that the G51 totally rocked their socks off the moment they opened the box, they are lying to you. Like majority of new speakers in the market, it will take some time for them to 'break in', and the Logitech G51 is no exception; especially when it comes to the subwoofer. It did take quite a number of hours before the bass really kicked up to its maximum potential.
For our performance tests, all songs are tested using CD quality audio files. To analyze different performance aspects of the Logitech G51, we used the following songs:
3 Doors Down - Here Without You
Chris Tomlin - How Can I Keep from Singing
Evanescence - Lithium
The Fray - Over My Head (Cable Car)
Hellogoodbye - Here (In Your Arms)
Hillsong United - Hosanna [Studio Version]
Hoobastank - The Reason
Kelly Clarkson - Sober
Linkin Park - Shadow of the Day
MercyMe - I Can Only Imagine
Tim Hughes - Here I Am to Worship
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Dani California
Static-X - The Only
Starting from the subwoofer, after a few days of breaking in the subwoofer actually offered some very strong performance for the Logitech G51's price range, as well as for the size of the unit self. Comparatively speaking, it offered reasonably strong and low frequencies that are solid and not just 'banging the wood' unless the sound card output is artificially set to high. Trust me, not every subwoofer can handle Linkin Park's Shadow of the Day at these settings. The bass is smooth and fairly solid, but 31Hz is out of its frequency range. Being that, it's not an earthquake machine -- all the pictures on my adjacent wall stayed intact and nothing fell off my desk. I could feel a slightly vibration on the keyboard when it was on, as well as a minor 'butt feel' like running your car engine at a certain RPM above regular driving shift point. Regardless, the subwoofer performance is still very decent.
Now, onto the speaker themselves. Again, for its price range the sound is fairly rich and full as far as the midrange segment goes. Layering is apparent, but with precise, smooth transition between each one for what I am concerned by 'full' -- no dry, missing layers in between each one that makes your ears ever so tiring after ten minutes of listening like the Logitech X-530 I used to own. Midrange instruments benefited quite a bit in this regard and vocals were realistic and clear. Unfortunately, the Logitech G51 is fairly limited in terms of transparency, but it's not out of expectations for speakers in this segment -- it's actually decent enough for majority of the users. Sound is generally clean and separation of frequencies is not only done well for the midrange and treble for the speakers only, as per the Logitech's design bass is restricted to the subwoofer only.
On the other hand, I was actually quite disappointed in the treble performance, even as speakers in this specific price range and market segment. The treble is low, and dark in comparison as juxtaposed to the ideal treble of being wet, sharp, bright, high, clean and distinct. The treble is quite missing in my opinion -- and while it's clean and audible, the lack of so in terms of how high it can hit is something I honestly did not expect, because I did expect some sort of treble to compliment its nice, deep lows presented by the subwoofer and wide, layered, and smooth midrange even among the market range of these speakers. The frequency response is generally good but does not respond well at 16kHz output on my Auzentech X-Fi Prelude. Everything would be so well balanced if only the treble was better!
With the acceptable transparency produced by the Logitech G51 also put forth only satisfactory or 'some' soundstaging -- it's nothing that we can describe by realistic, wide soundstaging but it's certain there to an extent. The portrayed depth extended acceptably; and a degree of realism is certainly there but, in terms of sound, there's certainly room for performance improvement. Let's put it this way: It's still much better than many speakers in this market segment.
As far as gaming speakers go, sound positioning is definitely a huge priority. This is where the control of perceived volume in relation to the user as compared to the events happening on screen and online really matters -- and the Logitech G51 actually did quite well after running through a game of Counter-Strike: Source and Half-Life 2 Deathmatch. Character positioning (And opponent positioning!) were accurate; especially regarding direction and fairly satisfactory in perceived distance. Overall, I had to say it's pretty darn good.
At press time, the Logitech G51 speakers goes for around $130 to $150 online. And let me tell you this: That's a very good deal for what you get. On the physical side, these speakers will certainly look good on most people's desks, and they are even customizable with skins if you are really inclined to do so. The control pod is actually very well implemented; I found it to be extremely convenient with all the features I could only ask for. On the side of performance, everything is well balanced and some exceeding my expectations for speakers of this price range. The subwoofer performance is very decent, the speaker performance is also very nice with exception to the treble. These speakers are great for almost every computer application -- whether you are a gamer, movie-lover, or just a casual music listener that's not too hardcore, these speakers will surely satisfy a wide range of users. These are certainly not the stereotypical subliminal components labeled for 'gaming' -- they are actually good for its market segment. The price only makes it twice as appealing for what you get for your money!
Special thanks to Pam over at Logitech for making this review possible.
APH Review Focus Summary:
8/10 means Definitely a very good product with drawbacks that aren't likely going to matter to the end user.
7/10 means Great product with many advantages and certain insignificant drawbacks; but should be considered before purchasing.
-- Final APH Numeric Rating is 7.2/10
Please note that the APH Numeric Rating system is based off our proprietary guidelines in the Review Focus, and should not be compared to other sites.
Great looking speakers, excellent control pod implementation, and relatively strong subwoofer combined with fairly decent speakers. I am quite impressed of how well the Logitech G51 performs, if only if it can produce some brighter, higher treble!
1. Introduction, Specifications, Bundle
2. A Closer Look
3. Usage, Performance, Conclusion