Top critical review
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Hats off to Logitech, this is one good system... but be aware.
on 27 December 2011
I was very skeptical prior to purchasing this product. As i'm sure many are in the same boat I was lucky enough to own the Logitech z2300 which was this system's predecessor. Once my z2300 saw its final days i went in search of a replacement only to find that Logitech had ceased that model and replaced it with this. Naturally i went searching the net for reviews and was greatly disheartened by the negative reviews this system received. After trawling through them I noticed a few recurring conclusions; "Logitech cut corners with this product" and "this is a shadow of it's predecessor in terms of components used and the sound quality it produces". Despite the mixed reviews I figured i would take the chance anyway, at the end of the day music equipment is highly subjective and i can say with confidence that i don't regret my decision.
Let me begin by making some physical comparisons with the z2300. Firstly the Z623 sub is considerably smaller than the z2300, the width and height is the same (it certainly looks it but i may be wrong, check on the Logitech website if you want precise dimensions) but the length of the z623 sub is MUCH shorter and the actual woofer is 1 inch smaller measuring in at 7 inches whereas the z2300 housed an 8 inch woofer. The satellites on the z623 are noticeably larger and heavier than the z2300's which inspires confidence and i personally love the design change, I always found the z2300's satellites looked pretty dull and generic whereas the z623 have a brilliant matte black finish with curved rears. Unlike the z2300 the z623 does NOT have a control pad and instead the power, volume, bass and aux/headphones jacks are located on the right satellite speaker, i wasn't too keen on this at first but you get used to it. With the comparison covered let me tell you the pros and cons i found with this system.
- Excellent design and build quality. Both the satellite and sub are heavy which inspires confidence in terms of what it is made of.
- The fact there is less bass on this system in comparison to the z2300 actually works in the systems favor. Don't get me wrong this system has bass capable of making your door vibrate but it is not as overpowering as it was on the z2300. The end result is the clarity of the music is noticeably better and the sound stage is a lot better. The mids (which were a huge problem for me on the z2300) seem less recessed so vocals sound a lot better, i believe this is because Logitech addressed the balance issue between the treble and bass found on the z2300.
- The speaker has an aux port whereas the z2300 did not. I never understood why Logitech gave the z2300 a control pad only to place a single headphone jack on it, this meant that if i ever wanted to use my speakers for something other than my pc i had to crawl under my desk and unplug it from the back of the tower. On the z623 they give you three potential jacks (maybe this was Logitech making up for the poor design before) in the form of the standard green 3.5mm connection to the pc's line out jack, one RCA red and white port on the back of the sub and the aux port on the right satellite speaker.
- This system is seriously loud, you won't need the volume above 1/3 or else you'll deafen yourself.
- Excellent bass and very powerful even on half. Another thing i love about this system (and Logitech in general) is when you turn the bass dial to half it has a little click to indicate you have reached half, in the past I have had computer speakers who don't do this.
- In general the system is excellent for movies and nearly as good for music, but these are obviously designed for movies as oppose to music and boasts this with the delightful THX badge located on each satellite.
- The biggest complaint i have with this system is to do with the fact this system has no control pod. Whereas before the z2300 used identical color coded RCA connectors for each of the satellites the z623 has a single RCA cable for the left satellite and then a very thick cable that terminates with a large VGA style multi-pin connector for the right satellite. This is a pain as before you could potentially replace the satellites for the z2300 whereas you cannot with this, another drawback is if the right satellite goes you'll have to get the whole system replaced (unless you can find a replacement satellite speaker via eBay) because everything is controlled through the right satellite.
- At low volumes there is a decibel imbalance between the audio volume of the right satellite compared to the left satellite (the latter is louder). After doing some research this is down to the use of two different connection types for the satellites. This issue is only minor and is corrected as you increase the volume past the lower points of the volume dial.
- For the bass heads out there, as mentioned previously, there is less bass here when compared to the z2300. However the z2300 was monstrous in terms of power and this one is not far off so all in all it is still amazing. The z623 possesses greater control of its low end bass so it sounds much cleaner than the z2300.
- This still suffers from poor cable length, only made worse by the fact the z2300 did have longer cables and I found them insufficient.
Overall this system is fantastic and you will be very hard done by to find a competing system that compares at this price point. I did love my Logitech z2300 very much but due to the greater tonal balance and the inclusion of multiple analogue inputs I have to admit I prefer the z623. This system looks great, is very connection friendly and sounds superb especially at this pricepoint. I recommend this system to anyone, just make sure to take on board the negatives i mentioned here previously.
** UPDATE ** 22/04/12
I'm afraid this update is negative and to the extent in which any potential buyer needs to be aware of it (it also caused me to knock off a star rating). My first set of these speakers became defective last month after only 3 months of owning them, I noticed a constant static noise during playback and that the orange power light would flash constantly whenever I applied any sort of pressure to the on/off button or if I rotated the volume dial. I ignored this problem initially as i figured it would go away but it didn't, the static noise turned into a combination of the speakers making static noises and the sub-woofer making large popping sounds if i even brushed the on/off button, eventually the speakers began randomly cutting out. Trying not to jump the gun I figured I would do some research and typed in "Logitech z623 problems" into Google, to my dissapointment the first YouTube video in the result was the exact problem i was having (alternatively you can go to YouTube directly and type in "broken z623" and it'll be your first result). I contacted Amazon and they kindly sent me a replacement set very quickly (excellent service as always). However this second set I have had for less than a month and it is already showing early signs of being faulty again. What frustrates me even more is I never have the volume dial past 1/3 so it's not like i'm pushing these speakers and when i had the z2300 I sometimes blasted them and they never so much as flinched. Go onto the Logitech forums and you'll find this problem I am having is pretty common with this system so please be aware. It is hard to figure out if I have simply had two faulty sets and replacing them will do the trick or that the durability of this set is far inferior to the z2300. It is a real shame as this product sounds and looks fantastic, if the second set goes I will only be willing to replace it once more before looking elsewhere.