What monitor speakers do you use?

I finally have a bit more space to set up a “studio”, although no chair yet.

One thing is that I won’t be able to use my old stereo for listening to the synths any more.

I’m planning to get some sort of mixer (recommendations welcome) and would like to hitch this up to some monitor speakers, as well as a way of recording the things I play with.

(Does this generally make sense?)

What speakers do people use to monitor?

What about these ones?

To get more on-point speaker recommendations, I think you should specify the available space for the speakers and your budget. =)

I recently got an Allen & Heath Zed-10 mixer, which is pretty great value for money. Here’s a review of the slightly more expensive Zed-10FX model, which is identical expect for included internal effects processor: http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/sep10/articles/allenheath-zed10fx.htm

Good points.

Budget is up to around 400 EUR (500 CHF); I don’t need anything too fancy.
300 EUR would be ideal…

Space is not very limited, there’s a small unused room in my new apartment, maybe 4m x 4m. Almost as if I picked it on purpose :stuck_out_tongue:
Still need to get a chair etc.
Do you use the effects on that mixer?
Can you use them separately per track?
I like the idea of being able to record directly on the mixer, and avoid any use of computer.

I have a couple of Volcas, a Monotribe, OP-1. I’d like to use these, eventually with voice, to make some music.

I have the version of the mixer without the effects, so can’t comment on those. Most mixers (including the ZED10) have an effects send per track, and the the onboard effects on ZED10FX function that way as well, but you can have only one of them active at a time.

i´m using a pair of nubert pro a 20 (the first edition)…no true monitoring speaker, more of a very linear hifispeaker (both active, 80Watt…we use this for our livingroom, tv, music, op-1 without any need of an amplifier.

no professionell solution as a studio, but a really, really good sound with deep bass if you want. nubert is a little company für “lowcost-highend”-audio solutions in the south of germany, unfortunately you can only order direct by them, they don´t have a distribution…i can highly recommend this one!



im using these.

Genelec studio monitors seem to have the best reputation, from what I can gleen. Also Behringer’s studio monitors just won an award for the best budget speakers, with the suggestion that their monitors sounded as good as ones costing $1000s of dollars. I use JBL monitors myself.

Whatever you get, they should be powered and designed for “nearfield” monitoring, to make sure you get genuine flat response, so you can hear what you are actually producing. I have made terrible mixing/mastering mistakes from using consumer oriented stereo equipment that “colored” the sound, boosting frequencies that, in turn, hid the mistakes in my work (the vocals were almost buried in the mix because the speakers I was using boosted the midrange sound to emphasize human voice). My stuff sounded great on that system, and only that system. It was a nightmare.

Studio monitors don’t have to cost a lot, but just make sure that’s what you’re using.

I missed out when you could get a pair of JBL LSR305s for $222 USD, but those are nice (listened to them in store, ‘sweet spot’ head position is larger/easier to find due to tweeter design). Go for the LSR 308 if you do bass-heavy things.

Presonus’ Eris line is pretty good, too.

Equator D5s are supposed to be really good, but I haven’t had the chance to listen to them.

I would get most anything above Rokit Gen 3s… but they’re better than nothing.

I have Yamaha’s HS5 in black, but I so want them in white, so I’m going to paint them…

Carrilon AMT-08 - cheap, branded units from a retailer that went bust. They are not good with the low end, though they’re loud enough. I dream of those 2.1 yellow KRK ones with the subwoofer…

For the mixer question, Allen & Heath ZED 10 seems to be pretty convenient, small, light, cheap… There is an FX version if you need some effects.

For a mixer with USB, I’d look for a secondhand Edirol/Roland M16-DX given the quality I’ve had out of the UA-1000.

i have a pair of KRK-5 and can’t recommend them at all. guess that happens when you buy cheap

At home I have a pair of m-audio AV40 at home. Good enough to jam on, but not studio-grade.

I have a pair of Presonus Eris E5’s which, if you’re on a budget, are astoundingly good. Actually they’re good on their own merits, regardless of budget, but you absolutely must isolate them (I use blocks of granite) and; well the usual rules apply regarding speaker placement and acoustic treatment.

Beyond that, Yamaha’s newer NS-10 replacements are great (and there’s an optional sub, designed to work with them) but then again some people hate NS-10’s. I’ve listened to a fair bit of material through them in the past and IMO they’re very honest, but it’s a personal preference thing to an extent. Lastly, Genelec are very good and of course it doesn’t hurt that they’re so damn sexy looking! They might hurt your wallet though.

Personally I’d stay away from the hyped sound of the KRKs, but it depends what you’re after. If you want honest linear response curves, then maybe avoid KRK. If you want a slightly more punchy and hyped sound, then KRK could be just the ticket.

I suppose if you wanted the best of both worlds you could have two pairs of monitors (never a bad thing) my friend actually uses a pair of horrortone grot boxes for occasional near-field monitoring. They sound nasty as hell, but they’re super honest in the crucial mid range frequencies and having only one cone, they’re super flat (in the frequencies they can actually produce) and there’s zero crossover.

I have the original KRK Rokit 8’s and they are great. I think they are a very nice flat budget reference monitor. Keep in mind the “go to” reference monitor for years were yamaha NS-10’s which sound like rubbish, but just became a standard. Would love to have a pair of Genelecs one day, but will always keep the Rokits as they have become a new standard of sorts, just because so many people have them.

Def go for KRK’s over the M-Audio. M-Audio IMO make the worst monitors on the market. Really ear hurting for me. Oh and with the KRK’s its key that you get the MK1 version not the new ones. Look on eBay!

One last bit, if you aren’t going to have a Sub, I recommend 8’ speakers as they can reproduce lower frequencies not possible on smaller speakers.

I have the KRK Rokit 5s (older ones), and I think they are quite good for what I paid for them. I know people with pricier monitors that don’t sound as clear to me. They seem to have a relatively flat response. But I am in the market for a sub because I’ve started mixing more for club systems and, as mentioned above, the 5" speakers definitely don’t give you the full picture in that regard.

i got a pair of gen3 rokit 5’s a few months ago for $160 shipped. pretty significant upgrade over my 9 yr old eidorol ma-20ds but probably not as good as some other shit that costs 2 or 3 or 4 times as much