What speakers would you travel with?

It's always amazed me that while we're willing to spend a fortune to get outstanding sound from our home systems, we're left to use our laptop or Ipod speaker as our sound system on the road. Quite a step down in sound quality.

I'm figuring on using my laptop and USB DAC as a source. Not ideal but space and weight considerations have to figure in at some point.

Outside of headphones (I like the mobility and freedom from headgear which speakers afford), what speakers would you or do you travel with when you leave home? We're talking speakers which would fit in hand carried luggage here.
I have a pair of Visonik Davids for trips. They are a ported design, very small ( the main driver is 100mm in diameter ) and very durable, being made of metal with a metal grille. I drive them with a Rawson chip amp, a box about the size of two standard bricks. I've put Herbie's Grungebuster pads on the speaker bases.

The Rawson has a 120V IEC entry so I can't use it on overseas trips. I am aiming to get a Winsome Mouse ( which has a switching PS and can take any AC voltage ) and then I'll be able to take tunes to Europe. I have considered powered speakers like the Audioengines but these don't appear to be compatible with multiple AC voltages.

Most of the time the Rawson and the Davids stay on the desk in my home office, driven by a M-Audio USB DAC. Perhaps one day I'll be able to afford a FireWire card for my Apogee Mini-DAC. In either case, the whole setup takes up very little space.
Trends 10.1, Scandyna Micropods. Sounds good and really trippy with red Micropods with their little Sputnik feet. Each piece fits into a sock.
An inexpensive solution is to find a clean pair of used Realistic Minimus 7's and do the crossover upgrade with a kit from ebay seller 'litekeys'. They really do sound quite good and are rugged enough that you don't have to worry about them while traveling.
Audioengine A2. I have the A5's on my desktop at home with a Benchmark Dac1 and a pair of A2's on my desktop at work. Phenomenol speakers.., both of them, check out all the great reviews at www.audioengineusa.com as well as the great review on Stereophile.

Oh, one more thing! Phenomenal is spelled incorrectly, but more importantly it has an ipod jack and an ipod charger on top so you don't even need your Laptop if you want to travel lighter. I forgot to mention that I also have a pair of A5's in my bedroom hooked up to a Logitech Duet Squeezebox, great combo also.
I don't own this, but have heard it. It's a very nice little setup.
I recently resurrected my 2 decades old Minimus 7 (driven by a T-amp from partsexpress) to make up for the lack of speakers in my new Asus PC monitor & am pleasantly surprised by the way they sound.

I had already ordered Litekey's upgrade kit while looking for more vintage M7 deals on EBay. The T-amp is the size of my wallet, comes with adaptor plugs & is 120V compatible so should be a pretty good world traveller.
My impression of the Audioengine A2 vs the Visonik David FWIW: apples and oranges, but the David is a more refined and satisfying speaker overall.

The two are about the same size. Combined weight is about the same (the right A2 has the amp in it so it's heavier, the left A2 is lighter).

On build quality the David wins. The A2 woofer is held in by pressure from the rear. This pressure is applied by a metal bracket screwed to a wood block glued and pinned to the inside of the cabinet. My left A2's wood block came unglued in transit and left the woofer loose

On sound the David wins for smooth response. The A2 has good drivers but the tiny box with its crossover is designed to force LF out of an enclosure and driver that are really too small to do even upper bass easily. If you turn the system up at all there is a perceptible bass hump and a noticeable transition between the two drivers' frequency ranges. On top of that, if the bass content of the music is high you get enough breeze from the front port to provide useful cooling on a hot day.

The David won't do much bass either but it doesn't have the unevenness of the other speaker. It is rear-ported and LF output increases when you put it near a wall or in a corner. Attachment points for matching wall brackets are built-in (although for travel this is of course pointless).

Both units have good smooth HF.

My evaluation is that the perceived difference in sound quality fits fine with the price difference. The Davids cost twice the price of the A2s and then you have to have an amp to drive them. If you can accept the A2s' limitation--don't give them a lot of volume--they're way better then the average desktop powered speakers. Their HF especially won't drive you out of the room. However you'll need to take along a heavy stepdown transformer if you want to use them in any country with European AC voltage.
Well hopefully it isn't too late to offer my experience with travel systems. I travel a lot, and thus have a couple dedicated systems for this specific purpose. I am continually refining my current system...which is pretty darn good, if I do say so myself.

I use the cambridge soundworks model 12 as the foundation of the system. $500 retail, but you can get it on sale for $375. I've had mine for 8 years now. Takes a beating and just keeps going. It entails:
1. Bass Case, that is the subwoofer and travel case that everything fits into. Brilliant.
2. Three channel amp, which has a dedicated 120hz crossover for the sub, and 50 watts for each of the 3 channels.
3. Satellite speakers with wall mount brackets attached, and integrated speaker wire holder. (don't really use these anymore)
4. Wall plug, as well as a car lighter plug.
5. Space to carry other stuff.

So I braided my own cables out of 16awg wire, terminated with Monster flexible Pin connectors and Banana Plugs for the satellites. I carry a Jolida USB DAC to run off my laptop, and some Audioquest King Cobra RCA cables. I replace the satellites with something different every few months.

If I'm traveling by car, and gone for a while, I bring my Mirage V2 bookshelf speakers. This has proven to be the best combination to date. There is a synergy there that really works. Incredible imaging, and soundstage, with a tremendously smooth presentation. I've never had to turn it more than ¼ volume. I am going to try the Gallo Nucleus when I need everything to fit in the case. The internal spot for speakers is 4” square. I am also thinking about ordering some Canton satellites, as they will fit inside as well.

The best part of this system is that the bass is off-loaded to the subwoofer, and frees the satellites to focus on their strengths. I highly recommend it for travel. It can be checked as luggage BTW.

When I take short flights, I take the Foxl v2. Really great sound from a tiny package. Bluetooth is really handy as well. :-)

Well, I hope this helps in some way. Travel systems are tough, but sooooo important. Can't live without the tunes.


PS. Totally agree with Tobias on the A2...mine are sitting in a box collecting dust. Bass was too boomy for my taste.