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Monitors for home recording

Mr. G.

Member
Messages
345
I'm going to have roughly $400-500 to spend on some monitors for my home recording setup, and need some suggestions. My music room is 11' x 11' with a closet setup for micing my amps. All I know is that I would prefrer a powered monitor so I don't have to take up anymore space with an amp. I'm lost and need guidance :rolleyes:
 

loudboy

Member
Messages
27,316
A set of used Tannoy PBM 6.5s and a good, used receiver from the '70s would give you just what you need, and probably run around $250, total.

Onkyo, Marantz and Pioneer made decent stuff and you can get into 50-75wpc for about $20-40, if you look around. I got a beautiful Onkyo 40wpc receiver for $15 at a garage sale this summer. Also a LN pair of Boston Acoustics bookshelf speakers for $20... <g>

I also like the Tannoy Reveals, and you could do the same thing with the receiver and come in well under $400.

Loudboy
 

Mr. G.

Member
Messages
345
Why would i need a reciever? I thought I could use the speaker outs from my computer or the speaker outs of something like an Mbox (when the funds are back up to par)? What about the Alesis M1 Active MKII monitors? Wouldn't the Boston Acoustic speakers color/enhance the sound instead of giving a flat responce? Please excuse me if i ask a dumb question, but I'm still fairly new to "decent" recording, and asking the dumb questions because I obviously don't know the answere :rolleyes: Thanks for all your help, and keep the advice comming :)
 

loudboy

Member
Messages
27,316
Originally posted by PRSplaya
Why would i need a reciever? I thought I could use the speaker outs from my computer or the speaker outs of something like an Mbox (when the funds are back up to par)? What about the Alesis M1 Active MKII monitors? Wouldn't the Boston Acoustic speakers color/enhance the sound instead of giving a flat responce? Please excuse me if i ask a dumb question, but I'm still fairly new to "decent" recording, and asking the dumb questions because I obviously don't know the answere :rolleyes: Thanks for all your help, and keep the advice comming :)
The Tannoys are passive - you need something to power them with. A 70's-era receiver is gonna do the trick very nicely. You could also use an integrated amp, but they're harder to find. The Tannoys sound much better than about anything else in that price range, IMHO.

I was just mentioning the BA speakers, because they were such a screamin' deal... <g> I don't care much for the Alesis jobbies.

You've really got to go out and listen to a BUNCH of monitors - they're by far the most subjective part of your rig, and everyone hears things differently. Online recommendations won'yt really do it, unfortunately.

Loudboy
 
T

TubularTim

Originally posted by LSchefman
The M Audio powered monitors in that price range were well-reviewed.
I'm using the BX5 and like them. In the $400 range he could go for the BX8 with 8-inch speakers, which are active and can be plugged straight into the soundcard's speaker out connections.
 

Mr. G.

Member
Messages
345
I'm curious as to how flat stuio monitors really are. I have a set of Fisher STV-9335 speakers, and they show their frequency responce on the front of them. Here's a pic...



How flat is that compaired to monitors?
 

LSchefman

Member
Messages
13,432
>>I'm curious as to how flat stuio monitors really are. I have a set of Fisher STV-9335 speakers, and they show their frequency responce on the front of them. Here's a pic...<<

Actually, does that picture show + or - how many db deviation from flat those dips and peaks are? I don't see a scale along the vertical axis.

Is that the response in an anechoic chamber, or a typical listening space?

Does it reference the shown response to a given % of harmonic distortion or intermodulation distortion?

Does it tell you about the dispersion of the speaker? The off-axis response?

In other words, does that graph represent anything in terms of real-world performance?

There are so many variables in speaker design, including measurement of frequency response, and even measurement techniques, that the kind of chart on the front of that speaker is pretty useless.

My guess is that what you have there is something stuck on the speaker strictly as a marketing tool. Incidentally, Fisher is not known for making great/accurate speakers (in the fifties and early 60s they made good stuff, but the name was sold to someone else long, long ago).

Studio monitors aren't truly flat in terms of response, either. No speaker is. It's a question of how close they come to reproducing what's input realistically. Good studio monitors are pretty revealing of the input signal, but they aren't perfect.

And just as with hi fi speakers, the specs don't tell you much. Your ears are the critical judge, and they will tell you much more than looking at a graph.
 

Mr. G.

Member
Messages
345
Thanks, that helps out a lot. I didn't figure that label would amount to anything, but I thought I'd ask just to make sure. The speakers actually sound pretty darn good for listening to auido and for movies, but they do seem to be a little scooped in the mids. Again, thanks for everyone's help.
 

onemind

Member
Messages
3,585
I've been very happy with my KRK V6s and my studio space is a sonic nightmare! The prices have come down a bit as well, so I think you might have some success finding a pair for around 500. I've always wanted to try the Genelecs in my space but just too $$$!

Steve
 

MichaelK

Member
Messages
6,476
>> Incidentally, Fisher is not known for making great/accurate speakers (in the fifties and early 60s they made good stuff, but the name was sold to someone else long, long ago).

Fisher has been for crap since 1974 or thereabouts. Just going on memory.

>> And just as with hi fi speakers, the specs don't tell you much. Your ears are the critical judge, and they will tell you much more than looking at a graph.

That's the thing. Even two different models by the same manufacturer, maybe just a difference of an 8" woofer vs. 6," can vary in how they feel to your ears so widely that it can make all the difference in the world to your mixing. If specs were the thing, all that would matter would be the dollar. Because they're all "flat" and "unsurpassed for accuracy."
 

MichaelK

Member
Messages
6,476
P.S. -

I used to mix on Rolands that were actually quite accurate... IF you had the right room, placed them just so, sat just so, etc. If you moved five inches to either side they sounded completely different. Nowhere in the wonderful specs could I have been warned about that. Mixing with them was a constant battle.

I switched to a small set of Mackies and I find them very easy to use and easy on my ears for long stretches of time. That saves me hours on a mix, literally days if it's to go to mastering. They paid for themselves in under a month.
 

EVT

Member
Messages
170
I use Tannoy reveals run by a Hafler TA 1600 poweramp. I'm happy with the mixes I am getting, and it's budget.
evt
 

LSchefman

Member
Messages
13,432
>>I've always wanted to try the Genelecs in my space but just too $$$!<<

Ya know, I had two pairs of Genelecs here in my studio for a long time, the 1031As on stands by my console, and a pair of the 1029s as well, with subwoofer, in my workstation area.

They're great at many things, and not so great at other things.

They sound magnificent, but for some reason, I have an easier time mixing on other speakers. With the Genelecs I tended to boost the low end, and miss some of the details such as reverb tails.

However, they were fantastic in terms of dispersion, and vocals were really dead-on accurate.

It is possible that the ones I had simply interacted with my room in a strange way; it's somewhat of an odd layout.
 

Impulse 101

Member
Messages
1,010
Go check out the Event speaker line. I've been using BAS20/20's for around four years ago. Prior to that I used KRK's and the Events are far nicer, the KRK's gave me ear fatigue after a few hours where as the Events are good for all day listening.

JT
 

therealting

Member
Messages
688
I just bought a set of ESI nEar 05s with the accompanying SW8000 subwoofer as my first set of proper active monitors.

I am still waiting for the subwoofer to arrive, but te satellites arrived today and I am liking what I'm hearing so far - there is so much more detail than I ever got from my mini-hifi setup. I realise that's probably an unfair comparison, but keep in mind these are some of the least expensive active monitors out there.

The only thing I am not getting is good low-end extension, but that was always going to be an issue with these satellites, and that's why I am getting the sub. The sub has a crossover circuit as well so there's no frequency overlap - I am looking forward to hearing the results.
 

tedm

Senior Member
Messages
7,270
Even if they are flat, their size alone would not be great for giving you a good near field mix, though they may be great for listening to your mixes back in another room.

Whatever you end up getting, consider keeping a pr. of inexpensive Sony MDR V6 or 7506 phones or equivalent handy while mixing.

Originally posted by PRSplaya
I'm curious as to how flat stuio monitors really are. I have a set of Fisher STV-9335 speakers, and they show their frequency responce on the front of them. Here's a pic...
...

How flat is that compaired to monitors?
 

amper

Member
Messages
1,018
I like my M-Audio BX8's. They're probably the best monitors currently on the market for less than $1K/pr ($480 street price for the pair). I have them hooked up through a PreSonus Central Station and calibrated for 83dB at -20dBFS. I mix with the Central Station turned down 6 dB. If you're curious why I do this, go read some of the articles over at http://www.digido.com/ about audio mixing for films and the K-Scale metering standard...
 

Mr. G.

Member
Messages
345
Well, I finally decided on the M-Audio BX8's. Mainly because I was able to get them for $300 from MF. :confused: Which is the same price they're sellin gthe BX5's for. They are a bit overkill for my needs, but they get the job done very well. Thanks for all the advice. I can hear now :AOK
 




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