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Micca RB42 alternatives (I'm still in the return period)


Jun 13, 2024
Orange County CA
Hello all,

I saw the review here on the Micca RB42 after I bought my current set. I am still in the return period for the RB42s and wanted to ask if there are any much 'better' alternatives recommended under $200. I bought the RB42s after reading a few Reddit posts and now I am going down the rabbit hole of looking at the measurement graphs on here and noticed that the RB42s aren't heavily favored. And I don't want to go through all the graphs or find all the speakers under $200, if I can avoid doing that. So I am asking for the wisdom of the crowd here at ASR.

I am also aware that 'better' is almost always a subjective term when it comes to audio and other sensory input, but I wanted to see if there are any recommendations for objective improvements over the RB42s before my return period expires.

My setup is 2.0 channel, the amp is a 20 year old Marantaz SR8000 and the speakers are on my desk, about 3-4 feet in front of me, so I think it would be considered a near-field setup. It will be used with optical from a PC and I will be listening to music casually and play games occasionally. I will not be adding a subwoofer due to neighbors downstairs that I don't want to annoy.

So far, I feel like the RB42s have no mid tones, just lots of bass and treble. I don't have any EQ options on the AVR and I'm using Youtube Music through a browser for a music source for now (I might go down the lossless/CD ripping route later), so I don't think I have any EQ options in the browser.

The music type I listen to is rap, rock, classic rock and podcasts.

Please let me know if I left any details out needed to make a recommendation.

Thank you all so much!
if you are talking straight 2.0 and your receiver is just being pressed into duty then for me i would never run a 4" speaker setup

like its a compromised poor mid bass, no bass thing as it is with even a decent set of 4-5" speakers

with the Miccas they have horrendous showings at sub 200hz

with a good 2.1 setup it may not be bad but the Miccas seem to be a joke perpetrated by the likes of randy and reddit

ie. for a 4" its bad

if you have desk space go 6" and up

OR if you want to mess around go 2.1 but be prepared to experiment

i'm guessing the SR8000 has the usual LARGE SMALL speaker options where SMALL = 80hz
Based on past history, Accessories 4 Less dot com should receive inventory of these 'refurbished' Polk Audio loudspeakers this week:

How big is the room?

So far, I feel like the RB42s have no mid tones, just lots of bass and treble.
That describes most under $200 speakers that I have looked at.

Neumi Silk 4 has an elevated midrange, that might work for you. $150.

I use them in my office, but I do use a sub.
The room is maybe 18'x18, but I want to use them while sitting at my desk and then also for when sitting/laying in bed. The bed is in the middle of the room.

After doing a little more research, I'm kinda thinking of returning the RB42 for maybe some Elac Debut 2.0 B5.2 or Polk ES15. I dont mind stepping up to a 5 inch woofer, but 6 inch will probably be too big for my Ikea desk.
@Eleven010 Super helpful resource:

At $200, I'd shortlist the Silk 4 and SP-BS22-LR:

The latter has mod instructions for even better performance down the road:

The Pioneer I'd buy on the spot if they were available in my country.
I'm not really interested in trying to buy used off of Ebay, so the Pioneers might be off the table. I will look at the Silk 4! Thanks!

EDIT: I would prefer not to buy anything off Ebay used or new. I just have an uneasy feeling with reputable sellers. But maybe I will try the Pioneers...
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I'm not really interested in trying to buy used off of Ebay
Elac Debut 2.0 B5.2 or Polk ES15
The elac is front ported so likely better for a desk. Good speaker in a lot of ways.

Both have what I would consider elevated bass and treble.

5" should be fine for that room.
I just ordered the Silk 4 and then canceled the order due to the Elac Debut 2 5.2 recommendation lol.

Any suggestions on how I can make a decision?
If they are going to be on the desk then you might want the one with narrower vertical dispersion (if there is any difference) to avoid too much reflection off the desk.
Look at the data.

The B5.2 has poor on-axis response, so wouldn't be my first choice:
What is on-axis reaponse?

And what, if anything, would I gain from a 5 inch woofer vs a 4 inch woofer?

This whole search sounds like "there is no free lunch" meaning I won't find a small, balanced, budget speaker.
What is on-axis reaponse?
The frequency response at a position exactly aligned with the acoustic reference axis of the speaker (usually the tweeter).

In an anechoic environment, this should be ruler flat for faithful audio playback (signal in->signal out).
what, if anything, would I gain from a 5 inch woofer vs a 4 inch woofer?
The lowest frequency a speaker can physically produce at a given SPL is a function of the area of the cone and how far it can travel in and out. Most speakers can only travel a few mm in either direction, so if you want any bass at all, you need a larger cone.

Area of cone varies with the square of the diameter, so 5" isn't just a little better than 4", and 8" isn't just a little better (in this regard) than 5", etc.

As for there being no free lunch, you are very correct about that. :)
And what, if anything, would I gain from a 5 inch woofer vs a 4 inch woofer?
Less distortion at higher volumes in the lower frequencies. And a bit lower bass. All things being equal, which they never are.

And there is no free lunch. There are lots of trade offs, particularly on a low budget.
I suggest you want until tomorrow, more advice will likely roll in.

The B5.2 has poor on-axis response, so wouldn't be my first choice:
What about a bit toed out? Outside of shoulders, not at ears?

Desk to bed will be off axis no matter what, assuming conventional heights of furniture. So there will be a compromise for one or the other is my thought.
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