Creative Labs GigaWorks T40 Series II Speakers
A pair of 12.5-inch tall desktop speakers is included as part of the GigaWorks T40 system. Although the rounded black plastic cabinets and glossy metallic gray baffles are unlikely to win any beauty contests, the design is tastefully executed. Due to the fact that the right speaker has controls for volume, bass, and treble, it can easily be distinguished from the left speaker. The GigaWorks T40 features knobs instead of up/down buttons, so you can set the volume and tonal balance precisely.
Because the tone controls are conveniently located, we frequently used them to fine-tune the sound when switching between CDs and DVDs. The fronts of both speakers are canted back in order to project sound up toward the listener. Each speaker is equipped with a bass-enhancing “BasXPort.”
You can connect a TV or DVD player to the GigaWorks T40 with the supplied stereo audio cable with 3.5mm jacks and stereo 3.5mm-to-RCA adapter. If your PC does not have a headphone or line-out jack, connect the cable (or the adapter) to the jack on the rear of the right speaker. The wire can also be plugged into an iPod, DVD player, or any other device that has a headphone jack.
On the rear of the right speaker is the jack for the optional Creative Docking Station X-30 for iPods. A connector is also provided for the wire going to the left speaker as well as a connector for the separate DC power supply. Under the volume control, there is a headphone jack. Unfortunately, the power switch is located on the back of the device. Despite being easy to toggle by feel while reaching behind, mounting it on the front would have been better.
In addition, we found the right speaker’s bright blue LED to be quite distracting, and it cannot be dimmed or turned off. If it becomes more of a headache, you may want to cover it with a small piece of electrical tape. There is a 14 watt amplifier built into the GigaWorks T40, according to Creative. A midrange driver measures 2.5 inches in diameter, and a tweeter measures one inch in width. It is possible to remove the speaker grilles.
There is no provision for attaching a subwoofer to the GigaWorks T40, but if you wish to have additional bass (and the resultant additional cables), there are a variety of 2.1 solutions available. Conversely, if you prefer the look and feel of the T40s but find them too tall, choose Creative’s smaller GigaWorks T20.
The stereo speaker set is almost identical to the T40, but has a single midrange driver instead of two and is considerably less expensive. I was most impressed with the system’s clarity. There is good bass.
With GigaWorks T40, dialogue sounded pretty good. The stereo image was quite good from about three feet away, but the sound was dynamically constrained in comparison to a budget home theater in a box. As soon as the onscreen action heated up, the GigaWorks T40 speakers struggled to produce sound.
When we kept the volume under control, high-impact sounds from games such as Unreal Tournament 3 performed better than DVDs–upping the volume made the speakers work too hard. If you are looking for a system to play music in a small room or dorm, the GigaWorks T40 is the best choice.
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