Sound Quality
As the audience, judging the sound quality from a set of speakers varies from one person to another. That being said, your personal taste in how you like your music to sound should affect your decision to buy speakers more than someone saying, "Dude, these speakers pound!". Some people enjoy music played at ear-blistering levels, where the distortion is so high that making out lyrics is almost impossible. Others, like myself, enjoy the clarity of a speaker more than how loud it is.

Section 1. Music
I spent over a week listening to these speakers, pushing them in various aspects. Music was the first test that I tried, since I spend a great deal of time listening to it while working. I played all types of music, from The Eagles to TLC to Louis Armstrong. These speakers have the most amazing clarity in the high and mid frequencies that I have heard to date in computer speakers. I also own a set of Microsoft Digital 80's, which are fantastic speakers, but the FPS2000's are even better. The first song I played was the acoustic version of Hotel California by The Eagles. If you have heard this song, which I'm sure some of you have, it is an excellent song to sample a full range of tones, from the sound of acoustic guitar to the thump of the bass drum. The speakers sounded stunning in this song, due to the extreme clarity of the highs and mids of the satellites. The 4 satellites are powered by a 4-channel amplifier, which produces 7 watts RMS to each speaker. That may not sound like much, but it's plenty loud enough for your computer. It was then time to see how the subs clarity stood up. I tried No Scrubs by TLC, which has some decent lows. The sub sounded fantastic, producing clean deep punchy bass. Now if you are looking for something that rattles pictures off the wall and shakes screws loose, then get yourself some fifteen inch JBL's and a big power amp :) The sub is a 5 1/4" woofer in a ported box, powered by a Class H subwoofer amplifier that produces 25 watts RMS (root mean square). Describing what the different classes of amplifiers are is an article in itself, so if you are curious about it go here. You will not be disappointed in the subwoofer - it is better than the sub that comes with the Microsoft DS-80's.

Section 2. 3D Sound & Gaming
Today's latest craze in computer audio is 3D audio. Whether it be EAX or A3D, it's in almost every new game. Although simulating 3D audio on two speakers has been quite successful, it does not compare to four speakers. The FPS2000's sound fantastic when hooked up to a new 3d audio card, such as the MX-300, which is what I used for my tests. I tried various games like Unreal, Half Life, Need For Speed High Stakes, and Star Wars Racer; all of them sounded fantastic. Turn off the lights and play some Half Life, and the story, as immersive as it is, is taken to a new level with these speakers. The speakers also have the option of using a digital connection, which the Soundblaster Live supports. I tried this and didn't notice much of a difference at all.

Index Functionality & Conclusion
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