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Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

The Place to talk about studio monitors, debate active vs. passive monitors, subwoofers, surround, amplification, and how they are best placed. In the sub-forum we discuss acoustical foam, broadband and bass traps, and the acoustical properties the studio's room.

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Most pleasing Powered Monitor over $1000 a pair at zZounds

JBL LSR4326P Powered Studio Monitor (220 Watts, 1x6.25 in.)
5
7%
M-Audio DSM1 Studiophile Studio Monitor
0
No votes
Mackie HR824MKII 2-Way Active Studio Monitor (1x8 in.)
9
12%
JBL LSR4328P Powered Studio Monitor (220 Watts, 1x8 in.)
3
4%
Dynaudio BM6A MKII Active Nearfield Monitor
20
27%
M-Audio DSM2 Studiophile Studio Monitor
2
3%
Adam A7 Powered Nearfield Monitor
24
33%
KRK VXT8 Active Studio Monitor
10
14%
 
Total votes : 73

Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby Tweak on Fri Feb 20, 2009 10:14 pm

This poll compares active studio monitors over $1000 a pair that are available at zZounds.

-->this poll has been running since May 18, 2009<---


JBL LSR4326P Powered Studio MonitorImage
The biggest challenge for anyone producing audio is creating a mix that sounds great on all playback systems. Much of the problem is caused by the mixing room interacting with the studio monitors and creating an inaccurate picture at the mix position. JBL Professional, continuing its long tradition of revolutionary products, decided it was time to fix the problem.



M-Audio DSM1 Studiophile Studio Monitor
http://www.zzounds.com/a--3745/item--MDODSM1/sid--poll
Image
The Studiophile DSM1 reference monitor is engineered to provide superior monitoring to discerning audio professionals. The design results from collaboration between two powerhouse companies in music technology: M-Audio, the top U.S. manufacturer of reference monitors, and Digidesign, the industry leader in DSP technology. The DSM1 monitor features DSP-based crossover management, an assortment of onboard digital EQ controls, proprietary high-grade driver designs, and analog and digital inputs for high-resolution audio up to 24-bit/192kHz. With stunning accuracy, clarity and dynamic range, the Studiophile DSM1 monitor makes world-class reference technology accessible to a broad array of creative and professional environments.



Mackie HR824MKII 2-Way Active Studio Monitor (1x8 in.)
http://www.zzounds.com/a--3745/item--MACHR824MKII/sid--poll
Image
The high-resolution HR824mk2 Active studio reference monitor sounds as smooth as it looks. The new Zero Edge Baffle minimizes diffraction for a crystal clear image of your mix, and controls sound waves for wide, even dispersion. Combine this with uniform response and tight bass extension, and your studio’s sweet spot becomes a full-on sweet zone.

KRK VXT8 Active Studio Monitor
http://www.zzounds.com/a--3745/item--KRKVXT8
Image


JBL LSR4328P Powered Studio Monitor (220 Watts, 1x8 in.)
http://www.zzounds.com/a--3745/item--JBLLSR4328P/sid--feed3a
Image
The biggest challenge for anyone producing audio is creating a mix that sounds great on all playback systems. Much of the problem is caused by the mixing room interacting with the studio monitors and creating an inaccurate picture at the mix position. JBL Professional, continuing its long tradition of revolutionary products, decided it was time to fix the problem.



Dynaudio BM6A MKII Active Nearfield Monitor
http://www.zzounds.com/a--3745/item--DYNBM6AMKII/sid--poll
Image
This two-way active analog nearfield monitor with a 6.9 in. woofer and a 1.1 in. soft dome tweeter delivers distinctive Dynaudio clarity and accuracy, exposing every audible detail for the critical and demanding engineer.



M-Audio DSM2 Studiophile Studio Monitor
http://www.zzounds.com/a--3745/item--MDODSM2/sid--poll
Image
The Studiophile DSM2 reference monitor is engineered to provide superior monitoring to discerning audio professionals. The design results from collaboration between two powerhouse companies in music technology: M-Audio, the top U.S. manufacturer of reference monitors, and Digidesign, the industry leader in DSP technology.


Adam A7 Powered Nearfield Monitor
http://www.zzounds.com/a--3745/item--ADPA7/sid--poll
Image
The A7 matches the A.R.T. tweeter with a state of the art 6.5-inch woofer that introduces a new cone material combining high rigidity and high internal damping with low weight, resulting in an extremely accurate monitor with all the clarity, detail and spectacular imaging traditionally associated with the ADAM name.





Not in Poll
Dynaudio BM12A Active Nearfield Monitor
http://www.zzounds.com/item--DYNBM12A
Image
The BM 12 A is a two-way active analog monitor with an 8 in. woofer and 1.1 in. soft dome tweeter featuring proprietary Dynaudio Acoustics neodymium driver technology. This model includes switchable EQ contour filters for optimizing speaker placement, as well as high-pass filters for use with subwoofers, like Dynaudio Acoustics BM14S
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby MASSIVE Mastering on Fri Feb 20, 2009 11:32 pm

Not even a fair fight (IMO). BM12's.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby aww-de-oh on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:51 am

How would anything -in your opinion(s)- from this list compare to KRK's Exposê line? I've heard the Mackies' before, but none of the others in a critical listening situation. (have heard *not literaly "heard"* - good things about Dynaudio). I also realize ask 10 different people- get 5 to 15 different answers. Just IYO
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby Weasel9992 on Sat Feb 21, 2009 9:10 am

I would (uncharacteristically) disagree with John on this one. I've owned a pair of JBL 4328's for years and love 'em.

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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby EnlightenedHand on Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:24 am

I also would disagree with Massive on this one as well. Having used both the Dynaudios and the JBLs. Both are equally very useful and respectable.

-Tweak,
I don't understand the pricing on the KRK VXT8. Everywhere I look they are listed as $1200 a pair. Why aren't they included on this poll?

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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby Tweak on Thu Feb 26, 2009 1:40 am

EnlightenedHand wrote:
-Tweak,
I don't understand the pricing on the KRK VXT8. Everywhere I look they are listed as $1200 a pair. Why aren't they included on this poll?

Liz



Well the VX's are not showing in my database (the "gear finder" at the top) so it means to me that the price cannot be shown without a shopping cart. Its a great price though! But my guesses are it could be a one time price drop. Or is the new price permanent? Or perhaps a new way of marketing due to the recession. I know a similar thing is going on for the DM mixers by Tascam. But if I don't see it at 1200 today I don't want it in today's poll.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby Tweak on Thu Mar 05, 2009 4:43 am

I have added the VXT8s and reset the poll.
:oops:
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby terry on Thu Mar 05, 2009 8:00 am

Tweak

Don't be embarrassed they were 800 a pair! zzounds must have raised their prices.

Edit

Technically you could still stick them in the under 1000.00 poll. They can can be had at other sites for less than 500.00 each. I'm sure zzounds still price matches too. Whats with the price gouging???
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby aww-de-oh on Thu Mar 05, 2009 2:13 pm

Son-of-a-Rabid-Poodle! They were at $800 a pair and i missed the Sale??? #$^*%#$%@#$^[insert swear words here]. *crying loudly* Noooooooooo!
*sniffel* *ahem* *regain composure* For the love of *** next time someone let it be known! I woulda snatched em up before you could blink your eyes!
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby terry on Thu Mar 05, 2009 2:59 pm

aww-de-oh

Google them and you will see a site that sells them for less than 1,000.00 a pair. Then ask Zzounds to price match!
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby aww-de-oh on Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:35 pm

Thanks Terry! I feel better now. It's not that i need new monitors ATM, but for that price, there's no way i could pass it up! It's probably a good thing, actually, that i missed the sale; i could use a few other things in my chain before new monitors... but still! hehe
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby Tweak on Mon May 18, 2009 3:36 am

Alright. I am taking the BM12a off the poll as it skews it too much. As John said, its not a fair match.


I'm putting in the Adam A7's. This should fuel some discussion. The poll is now reset. This time you can come back and change your vote.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby Schemaman on Mon May 18, 2009 8:39 pm

I recently got the BM 6a MK II monitors and believe they are probably good, but am not convinced I fully know how to deal with them yet. I don't exactly know how to describe it, but they sound kind of cold and harsh to me. It's probably as much a testament to my need to learn how to mix better, but I have the sense right now that it's like the difference between looking in a mirror in soft light versus one of those magnifying mirrors with a bright light built in that makes you look so bad you question whether you should ever leave the house again.

I brought 3 reference discs to the store when shopping for monitors (Sting Nothing Like the Sun, King Crimson Construkction of Light, and Peter Gabriel So) and played them using the BM 6a, 824s, and A7s. I thought the 824s and the BM 6as would best meet my needs and went with the BM 6as because they somehow seemed a little crisper. I guess the good news and bad news for me is there is a *ton* of crispness and clarity to deal with.

I am in the process of evaluating the room for acoustical treatment (it's a spare bedroom), reconsidering monitor placement since they could be moved farther from the wall, adjusting the switches on the back of the monitor to suit the room and breaking the monitors in by loudly playing lots of Chris Isaak discs for hours at a time since I have been on a twangy rockabilly/surf music jag lately. I have heard monitors need a break in period and I don't know if it's true, but I am willing to try.

Anyway, I wrote all the extra detail to give context instead of just saying they seem cold and harsh to me. They sounded good when I listened to them in the store and I have read several good reviews, so I am confident I can get them to work in my place with a little more effort on my part.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby terry on Mon May 18, 2009 11:38 pm

Well I have to say based on cost and performance the krk vxt 8 came out on top. The one thing that really made me decide on them was when I went to GC to test them. I was able to a/b/c/d test them against the JBL and the Genelec and Adams a7 most were muddy or UN clear on the low end. But the biggest thing was the reverb. I don't how to equate that to. It would have covered the mids and highs, to me that would say more for the cross over. I was able to actually hear it with the KRK when all the rest was non existent. the test bed was a midi controller through a Yamaha MOTIF RACK XS all was set up equally even though it was not a treated room. I was able to get them new at 539.00 each at another site in stead of blemished here. The first time around was a set of vxt4 and went back and tested the vxt8. As soon as I get them this week ill be looking at the vxt6 to fill the rears to complete the surround sound upgrade. The room I'm in is considered small but that will change when I buy a new home.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby bigcohoona on Thu May 21, 2009 10:09 pm

I know the new Event Opals are a little more than the above monitors...has anyone demo'd them with the A7's or the BM6a mkII's ?

These are the 3 monitors I've been looking at for about a year to replace my KRK Rokits.

Thanks for any and all inputs...I'm leaning toward the Adams at the moment.

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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby aww-de-oh on Fri May 22, 2009 7:06 am

If price isn't a concern, check out the Klein & Hummel 0300's
I think they're going for around $2,200 each. There's the regular 0300 and a 0300D (Digital input)

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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby Nanashi on Sat May 23, 2009 4:14 pm

For near fields its not really fair to compare the 800-1200$ range to the 2000$-3000$ range in the least. There is a fairly big quality jump. In 2000$ you start getting smaller monitors that are geared explicitly towards professional applications and brands that don't even have offerings below 1500$ start opening up. versus the 800$ range-1200$ range is where you just hit entry level point for decent near fields.

I haven't heard the Dynaudio BM5s (I've heard other Dynaudios) and I'm very curious about the New M-Audio. I'm not surprised in the least when someone who likes KRKs sound doesn't like ADAM or Genelec Sound, they really are very diffferent. I find KRKs to be a bit on the brighterside, and more uncolored for the lack of a better word. ADAMs and Genelecs both exhibit coloration.

That being said I probably think the best deal is the Dynaudio which is right now 900$ at zzounds. Assuming the consumer is joe newbie that doesn't have particular prefences towards any sound, I'm skeptical that the 300$ more you'd pay for KRK or ADAMs or Genelec 8030 would reflect their inherent superiority.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby bigcohoona on Wed May 27, 2009 9:23 pm

I agree it may not be fair to judge 2000 + against the others.

Since two of the three monitors I am considering were on the list I thought I'd ask if anyone had heard the Event Opals yet. Event has thrown the gauntlett and challenged any other company to beat the Opals...pretty strong statement from owner (who also owns Rode mics). After watching Events videos on the speakers I was pretty impressed with them.

Now whether they are worth the extra grand I don't know. I'm leaning toward the A7's right now as I keep hearing more and more switching over to them, and even from more expensive setups. I've heard the Dynaudio bm5a's and was very impressed. I've not heard the Bm6a Mk II's yet and am curious how they sound in comparison. I currently own KRK rockit 6's and have spent some time with the VX models which sounded a little too good to be believable.

Another system you may want to add is the Blue Sky products, Skywalker Sound studios was so impressed with them that they gutted their studios and replaced them all with the Blue Sky systems.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby jazzcat522 on Wed Jun 24, 2009 4:54 pm

In my experience i would have to say JBL LSR4326P Powered Studio Monitor, i dont mix in the best/ideal acoustical setting, and have tried some not all moniter's in this list but when I performed the room calibration i dont have to go back and fix something in my mix that i wasn't hearing before, everything is clear and transparant in the sense that when i listen to it in different enviorments and speakers it translate the same. the JBL LSR4326P were my missing piece to my puzzle :mrgreen:
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby AFK on Tue Aug 04, 2009 1:20 am

After listening to a good bunch of these for some time, my vote goes to the KRK VXT8. I would have voted for the Adam A7 if it weren't for the fact that my music is bass heavy. The A7 was...CLEARLY the clearest of the bunch, but due to its smaller woofer, it wasn't able to handle the really low end bass.

I tested 9 tracks with the following:

Dynaudio BM5A - amazed by the amount of bass this small little guy could produce, but felt it muddied all the frequencies as the bass was not tight
Mackie HR824 - was going to buy this, but realize now I was only buying into the marketing hype; these sounded like the Dynaudio BM5A but with more bass, and the mids were scooped out
JBL 4328P - dude, where's the bass???
Adam A7 - OMG the clarity is amazing, and the bass is very tight and punchy...but wasn't able put out the lower end bass :(
KRK VXT8 - seemed the most well-rounded in the highs, mids, and lows

I think a lot of it comes down to your musical preference/style. If bass isn't that important, the Adam A7 wins hands down by far. If you need bass, I think the KRK VXT8 is the best compromise.

If there's any criticism of the Adam A7, it's that it could possibly be slightly too bright (colored?). It's wild how clear this little bad boy is and it makes me think the treble has to be turned up or something!
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby AFK on Wed Aug 05, 2009 12:14 am

Okay, forget everything I said.

I just went to another Guitar Center, and WOW, what a difference a room makes! It seems like there is NO POINT in listening to monitors at stores if the room isn't properly treated. Here's how the same speakers sounded this time:

Dynaudio BM5A - still amazed by the amount of bass this little fella produces, but this time, the mids and highs were not muddied and were in fact very clear! In fact, of the 3 speakers tested tonight, this one produced the most bass, even if the woofer was smaller! The KRK VXT8 was more capable of producing the lows in the lower end though.
Mackie HR824 - only listened for a minute because it was obviously not as clear as the KRK VXT8.
JBL 4328P - forgot to test.
Adam A7 - sounded the same.
KRK VXT8 - the bass seemed a little lacking this time, but had a wider spectrum simply because its woofer was bigger than the Dynaudio BM5A. The mids sounded hollow, but the highs were comparable to the Dynaudio BM5A...maybe a shade brighter.

CONCLUSION: Treat my room first, and then buy and return various speakers until I find one I like.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby EnlightenedHand on Wed Aug 05, 2009 6:42 am

...what a difference a room makes! It seems like there is NO POINT in listening to monitors at stores if the room isn't properly treated...
That's really the biggest thing to be aware of. Also, it's no use just listening for a couple minutes to a few different monitors. The only way to know for certain that a speaker set will work for your mixing duties is to actually get it home and mix with it for at least a couple of days. Then you can observe how well that particular speaker translates a mix, which is the real measure of a monitor's worth.

I have found that without a properly treated room listening to monitors is almost a complete waste of time, and in the stores like GC they never have well treated rooms at the ones I've visited. In my experience the results of actually mixing with some of those speakers went like this:

BM5a= good overall balance of lows, mids and highs, good fine detail representation, reasonably comfortable sweet spot, is fine for translating a mix reliably if used in a well treated listening space, required little adjustment time to get used to. I recommend them.

VXT4= good overall balance, exceptionally clear mids, slightly in-your-face highs, good fine detail representation, none of the very common boxy-ness sound, slightly understated low frequencies, reasonably comfortable sweet spot, required little adjustment time to get accustomed to, fine for translating a mix when used in a well treated listening space. I recommend them.

A7= overall balance leans towards excessive high frequencies, clear mids, slightly boxy low frequencies IMO, exceptional fine detail representation, somewhat narrow sweet spot, took more time to get adjusted to then I would have liked, fine for translating a mix once the learning curve is passed and if used in a well treated room. Not my favorites, but I can say that they are very respectable. I recommend them.

Mackie HR824= poor overall balance IMO, too much low frequency info (and a boxy sound at that), cloudy mids, understated highs, congested sounding to my ears, poor fine detail representation, Required too much time to get used to. Wasn't able to get a mix to translate well in the couple of attempts I made. I don't recommend them.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby AFK on Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:50 am

I spent a few hours at Gearslutz last night, and I've determined to get something with a woofer no smaller than 8 inches simply because my music is bass heavy (electronic music) and I don't want to get a sub, so detailed lows is very important. After I'm done treating my room, I was thinking of taking these 4 home:

Adam P22A
Dynaudio BM12A
Dynaudio BM15A (I know Amon Tobin uses these, and I love his music and the way they sound)
KRK VXT8

I suspect most newbies are passing judgment on monitors in an untreated room thinking it doesn't make that much of a difference (like I did). Once you hear the same speakers in at least 2 different untreated rooms, it will be a big eye (or ear) opener.

I guess for now, I'll just have to continue using my Mackie MR5 and focus now on room treatment and learning my monitors and DAW. I think that's the right way to go about at it before committing to expensive monitors.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby jones.yuri@gmail.com on Sun Oct 11, 2009 4:38 pm

Ok, so a dumb question:

What about guys/gals who have a pair of VXT8's or BM5a's (both are decent pairs) but do not have an acoustically treated room?

Are they doomed to creating sub-par mixes until such a time that they change homes (given that the current one doesn't allow for much treatment) or change jobs (given that lack of finances is their main obstacle)? Or perhaps there are other reasons which prohibit them from re-vamping their project studio such as lack of knowledge, etc.

Whatever the case may be, would you (the informed users of this forum) recommend that these guys/gals outsource the mixing aspect of their productions to a facility with better acoustic conditions? Or is there a way to get good, commercial quality mixes with some hard work, knowledge of your monitors, and frequent referencing (on other systems).

I ask this because I am one of those 'guys/gals'. I am poised to begin work with some singers/artists who require music for playback over loudspeaker/PA systems (concerts and competitions) as well as playback over various FM radio stations. I am thinking of upgrading to the VXT8's from poor quality M-Audios and a set of ATH-M50 cans. But I really want to make an informed decision. So, are my efforts at mixing in a bad room with good speakers futile?

Thanks again.

P.S. To EnlightenedHand, in your last post you mentioned 'VXT4'. Is that because you experience with the V-series was limited to the VXT4 or did you mean to say VXT8. I was just wondering.
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Re: Opinions on Monitors $1000 pair +

Postby MASSIVE Mastering on Sun Oct 11, 2009 5:00 pm

It comes down to two of the only actual "rules" of audio --

1) You will only ever hear as accurately and consistently as your monitors allow you to hear.
2) Your monitors will only ever be as accurate and consistent as the room they're in allows them to be.

It's certainly not impossible to make good mixes without those things in place. But it would take amounts of 1) skill and/or 2) luck to make it happen.

Kind of like skeet shooting... Some guys know they're going to hit the target before they pull the trigger. Other guys point the barrel in the general direction and get lucky. That said - The guys who "know" also know their guns. Give them a old gun with bad sights and then a greater amount of experience and instinct is necessary. Give a rookie a brand-new Benelli from the factory and he still has to know how to aim.

(EDIT) Unlike Tom Knapp... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcpB2l-ljnc
John Scrip - Massive Mastering, LLC
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