PDA

View Full Version : Powered Monitor Speakers




mac.head.high
Feb 11, 2006, 12:04 PM
So I'm about to invest in some self-powered monitor speakers and I was hoping everybody might want to chime in and provide opinions on which is their favorite brand and/or model for music mixing and all-around television post production.

Any advice or insight would be greatly appreciated.



daviddamonkey
Feb 11, 2006, 12:13 PM
Within the past week I picked up a pair of M-Audio BX5as. They go for around 300 dollars, and so far are working great for what I need. I will admit I haven't had a chance to mix anything on them yet, but on a basic level they are pretty nice for the price.

mac.head.high
Feb 11, 2006, 12:23 PM
Within the past week I picked up a pair of M-Audio BX5as. They go for around 300 dollars, and so far are working great for what I need. I will admit I haven't had a chance to mix anything on them yet, but on a basic level they are pretty nice for the price.


Cool. That's good to hear, because I own some M-Audio stuff already and I've been very happy.

May I ask how the high-end souds on your pair?

beatsme
Feb 11, 2006, 01:38 PM
do you have an M-Audio sound card already? I ask because I too thought of buying some powered speakers when it occurred to me that I could just use the RCA outs on my M-Audio card to connect my G4 to my stereo. I've had great results with this arrangement, and it certainly was cheaper than buying new speakers. It might be a good alternative for you, though the powered speakers would allow the kind of portability/flexibility that a direct stereo connection wouldn't...

cheers

mac.head.high
Feb 11, 2006, 09:57 PM
do you have an M-Audio sound card already? I ask because I too thought of buying some powered speakers when it occurred to me that I could just use the RCA outs on my M-Audio card to connect my G4 to my stereo. I've had great results with this arrangement, and it certainly was cheaper than buying new speakers. It might be a good alternative for you, though the powered speakers would allow the kind of portability/flexibility that a direct stereo connection wouldn't...

cheers

That sounds good too, but no I don't have an M-Audio card. I'm running Pro Tools LE 7.0 on a Digi 002 Rack. But to be honest the stuff I work on goes directly to T.V. or radio, so I'm looking for a more professional solution in my audio needs.

But I apprcaite the suggestion.

ibn
Feb 11, 2006, 10:49 PM
i own the Behringer TRUTH 2031As. they are great monitors, they're my first pair so i don't have much experience with them. tired them out at GC before i bought them. the sound is amazing. my friends come over and are blown away by the sound. the cost is around 400 dollars, got mine for around 280 thanks to a friend at Musician's Friend.

my advice is to go to your local music store and try a bunch of them out. then choose. good luck

mac.head.high
Feb 11, 2006, 11:53 PM
i own the Behringer TRUTH 2031As. they are great monitors, they're my first pair so i don't have much experience with them. tired them out at GC before i bought them. the sound is amazing. my friends come over and are blown away by the sound. the cost is around 400 dollars, got mine for around 280 thanks to a friend at Musician's Friend.

my advice is to go to your local music store and try a bunch of them out. then choose. good luck


That's what I'm going to have to do, just listen and compare. Good times.

3rdpath
Feb 12, 2006, 12:23 AM
i suggest taking in a cd of your own work or some music you're very familiar with when you go check out monitors. i don't know your price range but here are a few of my favorites:

m-audio bx8's, event 20/20 bas and the event studio precision 8's.

the mackies and JBL's are nice but neither of them seemed quite balanced enough over the full frequency range (though the mackies do have an amazing low-end).

for low-priced monitors, the bx8's give A LOT of bang for the buck. the bx5's are ok but seem rather strident to me.

i've never liked krk's but i do have a friend that gets some nice mixes off of them.

it's all pretty subjective and the bottom line is you can get great mixes off of just about any monitors once you get used to them.

Quantum Man
Feb 12, 2006, 12:49 PM
I own a pair of Dynaudio BM5a's. Not cheap but very flat and neutral frequency response, as well as very good, tight, focused bass. Using Pro Tools LE 6.9 at home, mixing music is a joy with little to no ear fatigue. I was considering getting cheaper monitors for a while, but your mixes only come out as good as the weakest link in your chain. Monitors being no exception I decided to spend a bit more to get good quality monitors. If you are looking to spend way less than $1000 however, KRK makes great monitors for the money.

steelphantom
Feb 12, 2006, 01:24 PM
i own the Behringer TRUTH 2031As. they are great monitors, they're my first pair so i don't have much experience with them. tired them out at GC before i bought them. the sound is amazing. my friends come over and are blown away by the sound. the cost is around 400 dollars, got mine for around 280 thanks to a friend at Musician's Friend.

my advice is to go to your local music store and try a bunch of them out. then choose. good luck

I also own the Behringer TRUTH monitors and they are indeed a great bargain. I had a few smoking (Yes, smoke really came out of them! :eek: ) issues with them at first, but they were repaired quickly and have worked perfectly ever since. The ones I have are the older models from a few years ago, so I'd imagine the new models have fixed any such problems that might cause them to potentially catch fire. ;)

OldCorpse
Feb 12, 2006, 02:53 PM
FWIW, many people who work in audio (mixing music), love the Yorkville YSM 1P studio monitors. They are not expensive at all ($400 for a pair), and have a very true frequency response with minimal coloring. For the money, they are tops and beat out many much more expensive speakers.

ibn
Feb 12, 2006, 07:37 PM
I also own the Behringer TRUTH monitors and they are indeed a great bargain. I had a few smoking (Yes, smoke really came out of them! :eek: ) issues with them at first, but they were repaired quickly and have worked perfectly ever since. The ones I have are the older models from a few years ago, so I'd imagine the new models have fixed any such problems that might cause them to potentially catch fire. ;)

smoke?!?! :eek: wow!!! can't say i have ever had that problem.

but behringer is the TRUTH when it comes down to quality monitors for the price.

night0ne
Feb 18, 2006, 10:24 AM
personnaly m-audio is ****. if you want good studio monitor for less than 1000$can i suggest you the Yorkville YSM1p instead of those m-audio bx series. If you wanna go into something more professional you have KRK V series that is great or the new Genelec Series that is awesome but for true professional studio. But for about 650$can the Ysm1p is a lot better than the BX5 or BX8

howinson
Feb 19, 2006, 11:09 AM
You can have an ADAM, Genelec or Quested.
But they won't be at their best if you don't treat your room acoustically.


Why nobody mentioned about acoustic ?

CanadaRAM
Feb 19, 2006, 11:25 AM
I use ESI nEar05's, they are price competitive with the M-Audios and the Behringers, and they sound great. EMu has just released a line of small monitors, Mackie has their Tapco line, Samson used to have some but I haven;'t seen much of them lately. I have seen some Tannoy Reveals on eBay recently. JBL is making some noise with their small monitors that have electronic compensation built in. Pick up some Recording, Sound on Sound, Electronic Musician, EQ and Mix magazines and read the reviews, then audition as many of the monitors as you can. (Note... please don't spend two hours auditioning at your local music shop, and then order for $20 less online from Musicians Friend... that's not kosher.)

There seems to be a divide in small monitors, the under-$500 a pair group, and the $1000+ a pair group (ADAM, Genelec, BlueSky, etc). You need to look at the level at whic you are working -- if you are mastering or mixing final cuts, then you probably want to go for the high end. Of course, it means you have already also acoustically treated your control room, bought noise-abatement cabinets for your computer, will be mounting the speakers on non-resonant stands, and have rearranged your furniture and mixing surface to minimize early reflections, wall and corner effects, and created a sweet spot for critical listening. All of that is beneficial for cheaper monitors as well, but it makes no sense to buy premium speakers and then put them in a bad acoustic environment.

personnaly m-audio is ****.

Would you like to back that up with some reasons? It is not enough to say "The $400 monitors are ****ier than the $650 or $1000 ones and leave it at that...

airkarol
Feb 20, 2006, 02:30 PM
M-Audio makes some nice stuff

LaoTzu
Feb 28, 2006, 09:39 PM
M-Audio sounds too nice, as in better than flat.... so I avoid them. I've heard issues, problems, with almost every brand, at some point......
Also, speakers are not just Gear, it's a speacialized area.... usually good speakers 50 years ago, still are good....

Near Field Monitors, which reveal what was actually recorded, while forming a triangle, with your ears @ the apex, even with tweeters - are super important.
( You don't really need to treat a room acoustically, you only want to hear them once, not bouncing back through the room, hence near field, close up, listening... )

Some Mastering Headphones are out.... AKG 240 DF Digital Reference <Mastering Headphones>, with 20Hz - 22KHz +/- 1db !!! So, that is cool also....

The original & still in 66% of studios are Yamaha NS 10's - for 25 years.... they were flat.... and not pretty.... but if you made a mix on those, it translated to anything, and so few can say that....
Now, the wood for speakers, pulp, needs to be exactly the same trees, same place, same age, so every pair is identical.... but the trees are all gone! So, no more New NS10's - maybe still available?

The Yamaha MSP 5's, 5" is a good size, very close to most cars, stereos, TV's, Computer speakers.... and new, as a replacement for the world standard, the have frequency response from 40Hz - 40 KHz +/- 3db( No speaker get's that high up! ) & if you like, There is a subwoofer with 10" or 12" to grab all freq below 110Hz - but highest fidelity of ANY price....
27 watt tweeter amp, 40watt Woofer amp... XLR Sub inputs.... I found them when Guitar Center had every synth set up with these... whole store.... so you could compare.... very nice.... highest fidelity... and legend in speakers for mastering, mixing, since.... ever....

Oh try Mastering Headphones also.... AKG 240DF - and some others - check Mastering category, and frequency responses...

Yes, and LISTEN.....

It's not so much what you buy/ use.... it's how used to them you are.... over time... never "Upgrade", add another pair to compare, but keep old faithfuls.... You need to know how the recording translates on anything people may use.... so same speaker.... stick with it.... Yamaha MSP5's are easy to get used to..... and inexpensive.....


Good Luck,
LT

zimv20
Feb 28, 2006, 09:45 PM
You don't really need to treat a room acoustically, you only want to hear them once, not bouncing back through the room, hence near field, close up, listening...
the engineering community disagrees with your conclusions.

strongly.

beatsme
Feb 28, 2006, 09:54 PM
the engineering community disagrees with your conclusions.

strongly.

pretty much any room is going to sound OK, but if you really want to get a nice master an acoustically "dead" room is where it's at. I use the stereo in my living room to mix, and it usually sounds pretty good but there have been some occasions where what sounded great in my living room sounds like total crap in my car or on the iPod...

CanadaRAM
Feb 28, 2006, 09:56 PM
NS10's - a reference check standard because they are consistently crappy, not because they are accurate or flat.

Wood from the same trees -- are you serious?

Near Field Monitor is actually the trade mark of E.M. Long Associates /Calibration Standard Instruments. In the context you are using it, it means a physically small monitor meant to be used at distances of 4 to 12 feet from the listener. Near Field Monitor has no connotation of delivering exactly what was recorded, it is simply a description of the relative size and placement of the monitors. All of the montiors mentioned in this thread meet that definition.

You suggest that monitors in near field placements do not need room treatment -- do you think the sound magically stops when it reaches your ears? Any monitoring environment is coloured by room sound. With near-fields in particular, reflections from the worksurface or mixer, and the ceiling above the listening position both have to be considered, as well as the normal room issues of standing waves and reflections. Placement of the monitor against a wall or corner will affect the bass response.

zimv20
Feb 28, 2006, 10:09 PM
pretty much any room is going to sound OK, but if you really want to get a nice master an acoustically "dead" room is where it's at.
"OK" is a subjective term, so what's okay for you may not be so for me.

following on what Canada was saying, the question isn't the liveness or deadness of a room, it's whether the frequency response of your listening position is flat. if it is, then you'll hear what the speakers are putting out. if it's not, then you'll hear some distortion of it -- some frequencies will be attenuated, some will be amplified. you'll get a false picture of the music.

few rooms just "happen" to be ideal; they're designed that way.

howinson
Mar 1, 2006, 10:38 AM
LaoTzu

You seemed to be very subjective in your posts.

What's your profession ?

3rdpath
Mar 1, 2006, 11:05 AM
every room needs some acoustical treatment. if it's built from scratch, the treatments can be part of the actual materials themselves. if you're using an existing room-it's gonna need some work.

near field monitoring setups need treatment also. early reflections, standing waves..they all exist regardless of the size of the room or the listening position. there are plenty of articles online that discuss these issues. you can also study designs by firms such as Russ Berger Assoc. or Chris Pelonis.

and don't get me started on the mythical NS-10's. After years of happy mixing on other monitors i succumbed to peer pressure and bought a pair of these clunkers. I tried to like them, i really did but finally sold them. since they're now "rare", i got more than i originally paid for them...SUCKER! aurotones, minimus 7's...every few years there's a new "golden" monitor....meh.

jibberia
Mar 1, 2006, 12:01 PM
Every studio I've ever mixed in has had a pair of NS-10s on the meter bridge. They're the standard. If you're actually doing work in real studios, you MUST know what they sound like.

That said, I don't own a pair - I used to, I know what they do, I can mix on them in any studio, it's fine. (The magic translation thing is sort of true - if it sounds great on NS10s, most of the time it'll sound great anywhere). My monitors of choice are Hafler TRM8s. Little-known, I don't think they're made anymore, but I've never heard a better low end (it's so tight and fast... big but controlled), imaging is good, mixes translate.

A friend of mine just got a pair of ADAM P11a's in his studio. The imaging is absolutely amazing, to die for, I want them - but his room has some problems (very hard / corner-y - needs some serious bass control) so I can't really talk about the low end. Despite room problems, it sounded extended (had some power in the 40-50hz range), if a bit large and undefined. Probably the room. But the ribbons! oh...

I'd never buy m-audio, behringer, etc. for monitors. They're too important, and you'll never see them in real studios... you're just shooting yourself in the foot with them. (and I'm not a gear snob in other areas - ie I have all kinds of "semi-junky" mics - but definitely not my speakers)

Treatment is very very important. You don't need dead. You need diffusion, no slapback, bass control, elimination of modes. I've done mixes in fairly live control rooms that sounded great.

I just noticed that you say you do work for tv/radio - make sure you have junk speakers and boomboxes wired up and easily switchable.

So - listen a lot, preferably in studios (not stores), and buy the best monitors you can afford. Stay away from low-end brands. Go krk, dynaudio, adam, hafler, jbl, etc. (in my opinion genelec is WAY overpriced - but they're another standard speaker - so you should know what they sound like). And I don't know how people mix on those mackies, but they do...

LaoTzu
Mar 26, 2006, 04:25 PM
the engineering community disagrees with your conclusions.

strongly.


I'm an engineer. I went to college for it, and have 20 years experience... I often am begged for technical help from BIG studios.... Mix/ Master engineers, as I know more about the constantly changing technology - A/D D/A Conversion, Dither, how Digital alters sounds, reducing multiple gain stages, etc. etc.
Most developers & companies that MAKE this gear... call me if it's acting weird.... Professors, artists, scientists.....

Humbly, I have studied a LOT for a LONG time, and pro's find my expertise second to none. ( No idea how one measures these things.... but "They" say )

Near Field is for listening in 1 Meter or less 3 feet, 2.5 feet? 2 feet? Whatever you have room for - you & speakers should be equally spaced in an equilateral triangle - your ears/ sitting at the hypotenuse of triangle - ears even with tweeters - Speakers @ 45 degree angle inward ( Triangle )
The "Sweet spot" will vary - but you can move and HEAR inside- outside - then you have a perfect stereo image/ frequencies / to objectively compare.

A 40Hz ( Low E on Bass Guitar ) is actually a 4 foot wave form - it cannot be recorded, heard, or mic'd unless you move back 4 feet. ( So say a subwoofer may be on the floor 6 feet away ) but tweeters are tiny wave forms ( Many speakers make woofer stick out, tweeter back inches so both hit ears @ same time.... )

The idea of being so close, is to minimize ANY room sounds. Lots of Mastering guys ( 20 grand a day types ) Carry their own speakers - into strange rooms, and as they know a speaker - how mix translates to other systems - consistently achieve the same results.... see MIX oe EQ Magazines 4 example....

Peace,
Lao Tzu

jibberia
Mar 26, 2006, 04:43 PM
Um...

The hypotenuse is the long side of a non-equilateral triangle, FYI. The listener and speakers are at the corners of the triangle.

And as far as the four-foot thing, that's just ridiculous. A waveform, when produced as audio, is moving air. There is compression and release. Distance has nothing to do with this - our ears reference moving air going past our heads. Also, very few speakers without subwoofers, and certainly not nearfields, can actually produce a 40hz sine. Adding harmonics makes our ears realize that the fundamental is there, and that's OK.

LaoTzu
Mar 26, 2006, 04:56 PM
every room needs some acoustical treatment. if it's built from scratch, the treatments can be part of the actual materials themselves. if you're using an existing room-it's gonna need some work.

To be acoustically flat, perhaps. If you know & love a room sound.... bathrooms are on many CD's - Santana's last....
If you record / mix master - all rooms need.... listening, measurements - mike a sine wave sweep - and experience.... drums are not like piano, flute, or voice.... each has it's own set of.... peculiarities. Experience needed, not just before, but all along, every day..... open minded, or you defeat yourself, and stop learning...

near field monitoring setups need treatment also. early reflections, standing waves..they all exist regardless of the size of the room or the listening position. there are plenty of articles online that discuss these issues. you can also study designs by firms such as Russ Berger Assoc. or Chris Pelonis.

COUGH! You get early reflections about 0% in 3 feet from speakers perfectly aligned with you in center. Standing waves, reflections happen AFTER a few feet - Main monitors, mic placement, considerations....
Yes, many discuss these on line. Near field is not mentioning this - and acoustic treatments are Always suggested by commission sales people working there, or at music sales company.
Such speakers have directions - keep 8" from wall - use bass roll off if you get xxx in testing - now bi amped speakers also catch FIRE less than 8" from wall - so between sound/ fire/ mostly catching on well....


and don't get me started on the mythical NS-10's. After years of happy mixing on other monitors i succumbed to peer pressure and bought a pair of these clunkers. I tried to like them, i really did but finally sold them. since they're now "rare", i got more than i originally paid for them...SUCKER! aurotones, minimus 7's...every few years there's a new "golden" monitor....meh.

I have seen NS10's in every studio I have ever been in.... and all with 20 years experience. The point isn't to "Sound Good" - actually flat EQ makes it sound "Bad". Where most speakers make it "Sound Better" we need to hear into a Mix/ Master.
NS 10's are ubiquitous. No one says they sound best, but that the mixes "Translate" better, & more universally, than ANY other.... and 90% of CD's still prove this daily....

Yes, most studios have 4 sets of near fields. NS 10's, maybe Mackie, tannoy, and usually some cheap ass horrid radio shack brand with horrid sound..... and usually small "Toy" sized like a sub 1" TV speaker - switching through all these for objective comparisons - from a Yugo stereo, to iPods, Mercedes 1,000 Watt stereo, cheap TV, cars from 1970, PC speakers worth $2 - and laptop speakers......
The mains in a studio are probably great.... far away.... louder.... but that's to listen to, for fun, feel, whatever..... for critical mix/ master - you need to get work done to translate to any speakers.... not pretty on your own.... but as good as we can on all types....

No, room reflections are minimized 99.99% ***

* Sewer empty elevator shaft filled 14% with water & Iron can rooms on tankers, or some gymnasiums may not work perfectly... but you'll know it right away!


Sometimes, we need to record while band plays - so headphones on singer, example..... keeps only vocals ( not band leaking into track ) - and some places where yelping dogs or jackhammers - are poor mixing environments,
So, the headphones with flat EQ Monitor down to sometimes 5Hz & up to 38KHz +/- 1db (!)

Here is a quick list - $199 to $49 (!)

http://www.zzounds.com/item--AKGK240DF 15Hz - 20KHz $199

OMG These go from 12Hz - 38 KHz ( Like Yamaha MSP - but lower & headphones!! )
http://www.zzounds.com/item--SENHD580 $199


http://www.zzounds.com/item--AUTATHM40FS $69.95

Flat EQ from (cough!) Frequency Response: 5 - 28,000 Hz (!)

Yamaha ( says like NS 10's - the choice! )
http://www.zzounds.com/item--YAMRH5MA
20 Hz -20 kHz $49.95 (!)


http://www.zzounds.com/item--SAMRH600 $49.95


Lao Tzu

howesey
Mar 26, 2006, 05:06 PM
Every studio I've ever mixed in has had a pair of NS-10s on the meter bridge. They're the standard. If you're actually doing work in real studios, you MUST know what they sound like.Yup, they are everywhere. They are not great, but it is what people work on and to. They sound similar in different environments. Moving from one room to another you do not have to worry too much.


I'd never buy m-audio, behringer, etc. for monitors. They're too important, and you'll never see them in real studios... you're just shooting yourself in the foot with them. (and I'm not a gear snob in other areas - ie I have all kinds of "semi-junky" mics - but definitely not my speakers)

I agree. Your monitors are very important, do not skimp on them.

I'm quite into M&K. They also seem to be the industry standard when it comes to film.

http://www.mksound.com/
http://www.mkprofessional.com/

My favourite has to be the B&W 800S speakers. There only downside, they are too good. They do truly set the benchmark for monitors though. They are not just hi-fi speakers, they are designed for studio also. Just go to most of the most famous, and some of the best studios in the world, you'll see B&W 800 series in the rooms. EMI's Abbey Road studios is a good example.

http://www.bwspeakers.com/images/SpeakerModel/images/800D/800D_main_image.jpg
http://www.bwspeakers.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/products.ranges/Label/Range%20800%20Series


smoke?!?! :eek: wow!!! can't say i have ever had that problem.

but behringer is the TRUTH when it comes down to quality monitors for the price.Sorry, but they are the worst monitors I have ever come across. Also, smoke, if you are in the industry, you know Behringer will not last for long. I'm not a snob, but they are one manufacturer I would not rely on.

LaoTzu
Mar 26, 2006, 05:10 PM
Um...

The hypotenuse is the long side of a non-equilateral triangle, FYI. The listener and speakers are at the corners of the triangle.

I keep forgetting all the names..... for triangles..... but yeah corners of equal sided triangle! Thx!


And as far as the four-foot thing, that's just ridiculous. A waveform, when produced as audio, is moving air. There is compression and release. Distance has nothing to do with this - our ears reference moving air going past our heads. Also, very few speakers without subwoofers, and certainly not nearfields, can actually produce a 40hz sine. Adding harmonics makes our ears realize that the fundamental is there, and that's OK.


In Acoustics, wave forms are very real.... few nearfields CAN produce a 40 Hz because you need a larger speaker.... tweeters are small, woofers bigger ( not style, physics, science ) Yes, harmonics above ( & Maxx Bass Waves ad's tell us! ) do "Psycho acoustically" reproduce them by inference by our minds..... they say.... and true in many ways....

8" woofer can usually do 20Hz - ported bass ( Holes in speaker aka tuned bass ports also can make box resonate lower than speakers could... )


I mean we all know Lightning & thunder start at same time.... and unless it is really close, thunder follows, by seconds, lightning.... this is how we can tell distance.
If I play a small stage, and Bass player is 2 feet away - I can't make out the sounds.... if he is 90 feet away - delay is 50ms - 100ms but I adjust - miking - I need placement between them....

There are many EQ curves available - some better than others - Lotta near fields move tweeter back inches & woofer foreword to make sure both hit ears @ same time....

( You can reproduce 4ft waves in 1/2 - 2ft. or double 4ft - & several other math equations.... )

LaoTzu
Mar 26, 2006, 05:18 PM
Behringer are inexpensive..... for what you get.

Genelec is not in everyones price range. Some even suggest 20 grand speakers hardly make it easy to translate to many cheap, speakers....

Yamaha NS 10's were just book shelf speakers.... 25 years ago, not bad, then people realized how un hyped high, low, mids - made reference mixes translate better than anything....

Compare ANY speaker 25 - 30 years old - it will be different..... but you need to get used to mix/ master speakers - not upgrade - know what these do..... translate....

Hope this helps!

howesey
Mar 26, 2006, 05:28 PM
A 40Hz ( Low E on Bass Guitar ) is actually a 4 foot wave form - it cannot be recorded, heard, or mic'd unless you move back 4 feet. ( So say a subwoofer may be on the floor 6 feet away ) but tweeters are tiny wave forms ( Many speakers make woofer stick out, tweeter back inches so both hit ears @ same time.... )

If we take the speed of sound as 1330' (340m) per second, the waveform at 40Hz is more like 28 feet in wavelength.

jibberia
Mar 26, 2006, 05:40 PM
Lao Tzu - I think you're confusing some things.

We all know the speed of sound is slower than light. This has nothing to do with the wavelength problem you've invented.

Care to hash this out in detail?

And as far as 8" speakers producing 20hz tones - We can barely hear 20hz tones, even with tons of harmonics. Try it. Take a square wave up from 0hz to 20. You'll barely be able to hear pitch, instead of a bunch of clicks, until about 20-22hz. Sine waves? We really can't hear those that low unless huge speakers are making them and pushing a ton of air. Just around 40hz does bass get useful - and 8" speakers can push that. My Haflers can.

It really helps to hook up an old synth and test this stuff out. Or maybe Max/MSP or another low-level-ish synthesis program. You'll see (hear) what I'm talking about.

howesey
Mar 26, 2006, 06:22 PM
Lao Tzu - I think you're confusing some things.

We all know the speed of sound is slower than light. This has nothing to do with the wavelength problem you've invented.

Care to hash this out in detail?

And as far as 8" speakers producing 20hz tones - We can barely hear 20hz tones, even with tons of harmonics. Try it. Take a square wave up from 0hz to 20. You'll barely be able to hear pitch, instead of a bunch of clicks, until about 20-22hz. Sine waves? We really can't hear those that low unless huge speakers are making them and pushing a ton of air. Just around 40hz does bass get useful - and 8" speakers can push that. My Haflers can.

It really helps to hook up an old synth and test this stuff out. Or maybe Max/MSP or another low-level-ish synthesis program. You'll see (hear) what I'm talking about.
You do not hear clicks with a 20Hz square wave. You hear a fundamental (if you can hear it at that low of a frequency), and a lot of odd harmonics (which you will hear for sure). A square wave is not produced as an on/off in audio.

3rdpath
Mar 26, 2006, 11:25 PM
LaoTzu,

you're certainly entitled to your opinion but i completely disagree with much of what you have to say. ntm, some of your info is contradictory, such as :
few nearfields CAN produce a 40 Hz because you need a larger speaker....snip...8" woofer can usually do 20Hz - ported bass

or just plain wrong:
A 40Hz ( Low E on Bass Guitar ) is actually a 4 foot wave form - it cannot be recorded, heard, or mic'd unless you move back 4 feet.

you're welcome to place your ear next to my SVT cabinet as a test. i'll turn the output volume to 8 and pluck my bass guitar's low E. heck, i'll even hit a low B since that wave should, according to your theory, be MUCH too long to hear next to the cabinet.

seriously...you might want to rethink the authoritative nature of your posts.

jibberia
Mar 27, 2006, 07:48 AM
You do not hear clicks with a 20Hz square wave. You hear a fundamental (if you can hear it at that low of a frequency), and a lot of odd harmonics (which you will hear for sure). A square wave is not produced as an on/off in audio.

Maybe. It depends on the waveform, but humans begin to detect pitch between 19 and 21 hz. The square wave is tricky because it distinctly sounds like clicks below, say, 18hz, but the harmonics take over above that.

This is a tricky problem. Try this - listen to a 20hz square wave alone (try to sing its pitch, too), and then listen to a 40hz square, and then switch back to the 20hz. Hearing the octave up makes our brains much more "in tune" with the pitch we're hearing, and the second time around it'll sound a lot more note-like than the first.

And just because a band-limited square isn't produced as an on/off doesn't mean it doesn't make clicks at low frequencies - it most certainly does. Maybe "pops" is the better word?

e-clipse
Mar 27, 2006, 09:04 PM
the engineering community disagrees with your conclusions.

strongly.
I thought we were talking about the monitoring room, not the recording rooms.

It is better to have an over treated room(dead room) versus a room bouncing
frequencies to equal an over colored sound. Bass traps are great for finding your accurate bass within your mix. A diffusor wall behind you, is a plus... Or am I incorrect as well? :)

zimv20
Mar 28, 2006, 05:15 AM
I thought we were talking about the monitoring room, not the recording rooms.
we are. the notion that a nearfield can provide a listening experience that doesn't interact with a non-treated room is false. ears don't reject reflected frequencies.

LaoTzu
Mar 28, 2006, 06:02 PM
If we take the speed of sound as 1330' (340m) per second, the waveform at 40Hz is more like 28 feet in wavelength.

1088 feet/sec @ Sea level 32 F on earth. I mistyped......

25Hz is 44 feet ( approx, temp/ elevation/ air density vary )

20 Hz is 55 feet..... in Spring in the US :-)

& Ears & Mind can perceive upper harmonics which recreate the original ( but a microphone & Speaker are not like that.....
Loud speakers typically have HUGE HORNS - they need to be at least 1/2 the wavelength to have an effect on a frequency. So Yeah a 44 foot room for a whole 25Hz wave form, but 22 feet will work well @ 1/2. Smaller fractions ( you can google! ) can also do smaller - but decent reproductions..... 1/3 1/5 1/7 -

50 Hz needs about 22 feet for a full waveform. but on warmer days - it wont fit, and sound "different" that day (many amps Marshall on humid days in summer ) or 11.5 for a 1/2 wave form.

Yes, you can get some "sound" before 22 feet. We know a wave form shape
----===========-------
-----=========================------
------==========--------

/\
|

At halfway we see at least beginning to peak waveform. But how will it end??? Ears can figure it out..... even bones resonate low end....

That is why speakers need, to recreate a real complete wave form, long throw woofers - stage speakers often use 15" woofers - Which go lower than mid range & tweeters. Conversely 15" woofers cannot create high end.....

Tricks include Tuned PORT - a Blow Hole in speakers. This boosts the space available for reproducing low end. Say we have 8" Woofer, 1" Tweeter & Tuned Bass port - EQ graph will show a boost to lower frequencies, then drop, and slowly come up as speaker size steps in.....

Also a cone shape, with larger to smaller concentric circles, ( maybe voice coils ) each one for another frequency but still 15" never get's to small tweeter sizes....

Look at sub woofers. They may have 1000 watts - 15" speaker - and then two holes - "Tuned" cabinets, which may allow 9 feet - wrapped around the cab - & another at 11 feet - or a Bose Acoustimass which has 44 feet of tube....

LaoTzu
Mar 28, 2006, 06:20 PM
These are complex topics.... they vary based upon so many variables... Yet, for example, not knowing what near field is..... is for.... or saying it doesn't mitigate room variance when that is all they are for.... is disturbing!

Saying "I hate NS 10's" , OK fine.... but every studio still has a pair on the console..... "Good" is not a clear flat response allowing low, mid, high as recorded. This is a profession, a skill, and a job.... and honestly you should find a good monitor, bland, boring, unremarkable, in every way......


Yeah, Logic has a sine sweep for testing rooms, speakers, Mikes, ears.... I encourage everyone to try it... SLOW - @ Berklee Music College - Music Technology is a 1st semester class auto signed in for....
In a Music auditorium acoustically designed, with superb amplification, various frequencies are played..... ages are 17 - 40 - lower bass - guys heard before girls..... mids seemed LOUD 200Hz - 2KHz - finally at 20KHz it was very quiet..... like dog whistle.... but the girls, ALL heard 30KHz - as this is a class with 100 people, every semester, seems ears don't necessarily degrade ( or eyes as is commonly said ) and smaller speakers, skulls, ears, have different frequency response curves.....
( Just rare you test not just you, but a large cross section of ages, backgrounds, people in the exact same environment )


Anyway, I hope this helps..... there is a LOT to know in all these areas.... and user manuals ( and 800 new pairs of near fields! ) always add to the learning..... Mastering & Mixing are the end of experience recording..... but learn all along.... something is new every day....

Try Headphones - less $, portable, for iPod earbud prices?

CanadaRAM
Mar 28, 2006, 06:33 PM
A friend of mine just got a pair of ADAM P11a's in his studio. The imaging is absolutely amazing, to die for, I want them - but his room has some problems (very hard / corner-y - needs some serious bass control) so I can't really talk about the low end. Despite room problems, it sounded extended (had some power in the 40-50hz range), if a bit large and undefined. Probably the room. But the ribbons! oh...

I'd never buy m-audio, behringer, etc. for monitors. They're too important, and you'll never see them in real studios... you're just shooting yourself in the foot with them. (and I'm not a gear snob in other areas - ie I have all kinds of "semi-junky" mics - but definitely not my speakers)
But in the context -- the OP is looking for affordable speakers, not ADAMs at $1500 each like a 'real' studio can install.

For the money, the ESI nEar 05s are good, and I have heard excellent things about the new E-mu PM5 Precision Monitors.

jibberia
Mar 28, 2006, 06:40 PM
Lao Tzu - I'm really curious about this notion that such long waveforms need a large space. I just don't really believe it. Maybe to allow resonances to occur, or for modes to be apparent... certainly I can believe that it's more *optimal* to have gigantic rooms for bass, but saying "A 40Hz ( Low E on Bass Guitar ) is actually a 4 foot wave form - it cannot be recorded, heard, or mic'd unless you move back 4 feet" is just simply not true (which you conceded... right?)

Still, if you have evidence - an academic paper, a book, an article - I'd love to see it.

For the record, I did my undergrad in music, music technology, engineering, and computer science at NYU. (ie i'm not a studio rat / hack) :P

jibberia
Mar 28, 2006, 06:42 PM
But in the context -- the OP is looking for affordable speakers, not ADAMs at $1500 each like a 'real' studio can install.

True.

Speaking of which, I wonder where the OP has been?

Oh. Banned. haha... I guess it's OK to be near completely off-topic then.

zimv20
Mar 28, 2006, 06:58 PM
These are complex topics.... they vary based upon so many variables... Yet, for example, not knowing what near field is..... is for.... or saying it doesn't mitigate room variance when that is all they are for.... is disturbing!
HOW can a sound source "mitigate room variance"? it's your ears that are at issue.

do this experiment: go into your kitchen. clap your hands 6" in front of your face. if you hear no echo/slapback/reverb, only the original signal, then you have magical ears which will translate only the first impulse and somehow ignore all the ensuing reflections.

if, like the other 6 billion people on the planet, you hear reflections from the room, then ask yourself how exactly is a speaker supposed to keep the room from reflecting its sound.

gallagb
Mar 28, 2006, 07:16 PM
20 grand a day types

hmmm- i should change jobs.