[linux-audio-user] good studio monitors

Paul Winkler pw_lists at slinkp.com
Fri Jul 23 11:40:34 EDT 2004

On Thu, Jul 22, 2004 at 04:04:00PM -0700, Florin Andrei wrote:
> I'm quite familiar with a wide range of high-end studio headphones, but
> i'm much less familiar with studio monitors.
> So, what do you guys own or use? What do you recommend?

Monitor preference is highly subjective, I can only speak for myself.
I spent an afternoon in big chain music store's pro audio department
comparing monitors under US $1000 / pair. I brought a bunch of
my favorite CDs that I know well.  I was looking for smooth, tight
bass that goes deep enough for me (accurate down to about 40 hz), 
smooth midrange that isn't obviously exaggerated or ear-fatiguing,
and clear treble. I compared models by Alesis, Yamaha, KRK, Roland,
and Mackie HR624. I don't remember the specific models of the
other manufacturers, sorry. The Mackies won hands-down.
I found them a little aggressive-sounding in the mids, but 
the bass and treble was quite good and nothing else in that group 
was even usable to me. 

However, they had to swap out one of the Mackies because it was broken.
And when I called another store in town they said Mackie monitors were
often back in the shop for repair. Hmmm.

The Rolands (DA-30 or some such, I think) weren't too bad but they had the 
room set up funny and I was only able to hear them with some cheesy demo
they had, not with my own CDs.

The KRKs (two different models) were completely
awful, severely obnoxious upper mids and boomy, tubby bass. 

Then my budget abruptly evaporated and I didn't end up buying anything :-(

Funnily enough, there are cheap hifi speakers that I prefer to most
of the budget monitors on the market.  
The PSB Alpha B is a surprisingly smooth little bookshelf speaker 
with usable bass for $250/pair.  Of course, you need a power amp too, 
but it's still darn cheap.


Paul Winkler

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