Active Monitors vs. Active Hifi, Difference?

Discussion in 'Soundgear' started by flworius, Apr 19, 2018.

  1. flworius

    flworius Newbie

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    Afaik the Guideline is you should go for active Monitor Speakers, cause the Amplifier is made to fit with the Speakers and therefore produce good/neutral Sound. And never I heard "but anything <500$ is Crap."
    On the other Side, I´ve read a dozen times 2.1 or 5.1 Hifi-Systems are basically trash, and you have to pay >1000$ to get something somewhat decent and a self made Combination of Amplifier/Speakers is always superior. So my Question, why this distinction between Monitors/Hifi regarding active System or is that a misunderstanding on my side? Secondary Question, looking to buy a 2.1 Monitor System, any recommendations?
     
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  3. grdh20

    grdh20 Producer

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    The only speaker I go for powered is the sub where you actually need it. As far as the rest, I would trust your ears.
     
  4. beatmagnus

    beatmagnus Pending Deletion

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    Is that <500 per pair or per speaker? IMO active monitors are the way to go unless you are really into the sound of a certain amp paired with a set of NS10's for example (NS10 you definitely need the sub). But I don't know why you'd want to go through all that if your goal is to find the most transparent speakers.
     
  5. GoldenEar

    GoldenEar Ultrasonic

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    But NS10 if i recall correctly retailed for less than 500 dollars before. like way before. Yet it became a staple lol.

    I would say price is not always a determining factor. Some higher tier monitors have really amazing sounds but some mid tiers have an awesome sound aswell. It depends on what you are going for and as they said. trust your ears. What might work for you might not work for others sometimes.
     
  6. No Avenger

    No Avenger Audiosexual

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    Studio monitors are supposed to have a very dry/neutral sound with quick respone, whereas HiFi monitors can have a soft, exaggerated bass and too crispy high freqs.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2018
  7. Baxter

    Baxter Audiosexual

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    Studio monitors=flat and uncolored sound
    Hi-fi=flatterned and colored sound
     
  8. fiction

    fiction Platinum Record

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    Not necessarily, that was the case maybe 20 years ago, but from my experience, better studio monitors and HiFi speakers tend to play in a similar range, sometimes with practically the same product re-packaged as a HiFi product in a more "living room compatible" enclosure and asking up to twice the price.
    Studio monitors have become great bargains if you can accept to decide by your ears instead of marketing claims.
    Hi-Fi magazines often rate by similar criteria as studio/music magazines.
    Another thing never to forget is what speakers (or headphones) most listeners will enjoy your music on.
     
  9. twathead

    twathead Ultrasonic

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    All speakers will have some sort of flaw/hole in your home/studio listening room, than it's all about minimising that with room treatment and getting your ear accustomed to your new speakers in your treated space.

    Might be worth checking this out.

     
  10. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Platinum Record

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    I know a genius level electronics and sound engineer that actually built a set of flat uncolored sound speakers.
    I asked what they were like and he pretty much said he went back to his colored sound speakers.
    Not being an audiophile I cannot comment on the technicalities, but I figured from that, it came down to what sounded good to the person that was buying them or using them.
     
  11. No Avenger

    No Avenger Audiosexual

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    My monitors are said to pretty neutral and it took me month to get used to them. So, I can understand why he was doing it. But with too much colored monitors you will hardly get a good perception of what is going on.
     
  12. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Platinum Record

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    You probably have far better attuned ears than mine without doubt to the frequency spectrum, I only hear pitch. I would never profess to know enough about the technicalities of frequencies and electronics. At my age I have lost some of the higher frequency facility that I had in my youth which makes me even less qualified to make any value assessment other than what currently sounds good to my ears :)
    But if an expert tells me something in an area I have very limited knowledge in, I figure they have no reason to say something if it was not true.
     
  13. bluerover

    bluerover Rock Star

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    For the money, look at a pair of JBL LSR308 / 305, and any mid-level sub (mackie/ yamaha/ krk)

    If your room is small and minimally treated, I would skip the sub and buy a pair of HD600 headphones to finalize the low end.
     
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  14. No Avenger

    No Avenger Audiosexual

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    That remains to been seen...

    Remember ~ 15 of the best 20 mixing/mastering engineers are in their 50s.
     
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  15. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Platinum Record

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    Thanks for considering my age I appreciate it, that's kind of you. :bow:
    In truth my expertise is in the music itself. The little I know on an audio level while I have an understanding of what sits in a mix, has come from being blessed to have been surrounded by some really great engineers.
    I will always hand the mixing chair and mastering chair to an expert even though I know what I want. Mostly I can relay what I want clearly so there has been few issues. I think because I have a clear idea that has made both roles easy and relatively trouble free other than the audio itself occasionally. But I seriously doubt that I can hear above 12K and probably more accurately without an actual test, I would estimate 8-10K would be more realistic.
     
  16. MMJ2017

    MMJ2017 Audiosexual

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    Q. Can I use a hi-fi system instead of studio monitors?



    Does anyone use hi-fi separates for monitoring? I never read about it in SOS. Aren't monitors and hi-fi components trying to do the same thing? I ask because with £300 to spend there are only a few well regarded monitors available that I've found, but for that money there are any number of amp and speaker combinations from respected manufacturers — not to mention that it's much easier to find places to audition them.

    Steve Whitehouse

    News Editor David Greeves replies: It's not a daft question, Steve! In fact, it's something we're often asked, for precisely the same reason that you're asking it — for the price of some pretty modest active nearfield monitors you could buy some above-average hi-fi speakers, or even a whole system. There's nothing to say that you can't use hi-fi systems for monitoring, but it's important to understand how they differ from studio monitors, and why most people opt for the latter.

    Firstly, hi-fi systems are generally designed to compliment or flatter the source material while studio monitors should aim to be as neutral and honest as possible, so as to reveal any problems to the engineer. Not all studio monitors acheive this, of course, and you could argue that a high-end hi-fi system will serve you better in this respect than a set of budget monitors. But some hi-fi systems apply a slight 'smile' EQ curve to make material sound more immediate and exciting, or artificially boost the bass end (either through EQ or bass reflex ports in the speakers) in ways that make it more difficult to really hear what is going on in your mix. When mixing, your aim should be to produce something that will sound good (or as good as possible) on a wide range of different systems. Lots of people like to audition their final mixes on a variety of hi-fi systems (not to mention car stereos, boomboxes, televisions — you name it!) but for the business of mixing itself, will try and use as neutral a system as possible.

    From a more practical point of view, nearly all studio monitors are magnetically shielded so that they can be used in close proximity to CRT computer screens; hi-fi speakers may not be. Also, studio monitors are generally more robust than their hi-fi counterparts, as they need to cope with being used for extended periods of time, often at quite high listening levels. They also have to put up with the clicks and pops that occur when equipment is plugged in and unplugged, the occasional bit of feedback and other general abuse!

    Studio monitors — even quite basic ones — also generally feature some way of tailoring their response to suit their environment, even if it's just a bass roll-off control for use when the monitor is up against a wall. No hi-fi speakers that I know of offer this kind of facility. Finally, while nearfield monitors are designed (as the name suggests) to be situated right in front of the engineer, hi-fi speakers are not — designers expect them to be listened to from a distance. Hi-fi speakers are expected to fill the room with sound, while nearfields need to provide precise information at close quarters.

    Ultimately, the choice is up to you. If you feel your current budget won't allow you to buy some decent studio monitors, perhaps a hi-fi system is preferable. Just be aware of the potential pitfalls outlined above, and if you buy separates, there's scope for you to upgrade to a studio-quality amp and passive monitors in stages. In the end, whatever monitoring system you use, it's important to become familiar with how it sounds by listening to a variety of commercially released material so that you can be objective about your own mixes.

    https://www.soundonsound.com/sound-advice/q-can-i-use-hi-fi-system-instead-studio-monitors




    you can also DIY studio monitors which is fun way to get involved and learn more about speaker sin general!
    https://www.parts-express.com/hitma...speaker-kit-with-knock-down-cabinet--300-7116


    https://www.parts-express.com/epique-cbt24k-line-array-speaker-kit-pair--301-984

    https://www.parts-express.com/cbt36k-line-array-speaker-pair-kit--301-980

    DIY line array is DIRT cheap! (2 grand to build what would be basically 5 grand speakers in a store)
    [​IMG]
    benefit of these is , short range mid range and long range monitoring for any size room and very clear sound .

    But to be fair most people would get this (if they were in your boat)

    https://www.parts-express.com/jbl-lsr308-3-series-8-2-way-powered-studio-monitor--245-8124
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2018
  17. junh1024

    junh1024 Platinum Record

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    I'm mixing on a montage of speakers, none of which are pro studio monitors, and I can make stereo & surround imaging better than many here. It's not about how much money you spend on equipment (as long as it's not $1-grade stuff). It's about how you make the most of it, and your mixing skills.

    Also, Getting a sub? Think again. I'll just quote myself


    Having a sub is another can of worms, there's also phase & crossover issues, etc.
     
  18. bluerover

    bluerover Rock Star

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    Yes. In 1997-2000, I used 2 huge Aiwa Hi-Fi 12" stereo speakers and tweeters. My Echo Gina24 (before that, an SB16 soundblaster) was hooked up to the Kyocera R-861 receiver via RCA to TRS (aux channel), and I mixed my material on that. They sounded great, but It took A LOT of work for the mixes to decently translate on anything else - granted, I knew very little about proper mixing techniques back then (..f***ing hpf now). Man, that was fun as s*** when I didn't worry about anything except writing and recording, and the software tools coming out were so new - e.g. VST technology.

    Yes, you can use Hi-Fi stereo system speakers.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2018
  19. Lambchop

    Lambchop Banned

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    87% of all statistics are made up on the spot. In case yours is in the remaining 13%, how were the numbers arrived at?
    Serious question: how are "mixing/mastering engineers" rated? Current work, or the stuff of their youth? Not up on today's music, but just looked up this month's top 5 & no 50+ in the credits :dunno:
    [​IMG]
     
  20. angie

    angie Kapellmeister

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    A serious hifi loudspeaker should have its frequency response and maybe waterfall, so if the manufacturer is honest I don't see the problem
     
  21. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Platinum Record

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    @Lambchop
    Statistics is taught in every University in the world. The interesting thing about statistics is that to get an accurate reading that will still never be fact a census of the entire population or some kind of mandatory poll would be required. Some people would be in hospital or on holidays or living overseas etc etc so it will still be missing some...

    America cannot get it's whole population to vote in an election so I cannot see how they can get accurate statistics and to get a worldwide poll on something like "how many sound engineers...." is like....well..... :-|

    Yet they say things like "Statistics are an important part of society."
    If someone works out how and why they are important I'd love to know, because none of them seem to match and serve no purpose other than to promote arguments between people that think their set of percentages are more accurate than someone else's.

    I reckon the random callers trying to get you to let them into your computer or sell you shares in a Nigerian farm, or a lottery you won that you never entered have a better chance of working out statistics :-|

    But for an older feller I felt better that my time wasn't over and done yet even if the statistics were not 100% accurate :)
     
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