You are here

Surround monitoring considerations

For everything after the recording stage: hardware/software and how you use it.

Moderator: Moderators

Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Jez Corbett » Sat Oct 10, 2020 9:01 am

It's time for me to upgrade my studio to surround, and thinking about what to get.

Currently have a pair of passive PMC TB2s, but they don't make them any more, and the idea of having to buy an av receiver (yuck) to power them fills me with dread, but they've served me well for 14 years so they can retire as hifi speakers now.

I don't think i can stretch my budget past €10k, preferably under €8k so we're not talking hugely high end here, which appears to rule out the current PMC line up unfortunately. Being based in Finland I'm erring towards Genelec and Amphion. Note i cannot really stand the 80x0 series and their dreadful sub, so would be looking at the 83xx series, and have no experience of Amphion at all.

Anything else i should consider?

Should also mention this is in a pretty modest but reasonably treated 3m x 4m room, although i should hopefully be moving to a 5m x 6m room next year some point.
User avatar
Jez Corbett
Frequent Poster
Posts: 533
Joined: Fri Mar 21, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Helsinki, Finland
http://www.jeremycorbett.co.uk

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Sat Oct 10, 2020 3:51 pm

Neumann KH120s (or KH80s) and one of the matching subs (KH810 or KH750)? That's what I'd do...

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/neumann-kh120a-kh810
User avatar
Hugh Robjohns
Moderator
Posts: 29545
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Worcestershire, UK
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Jez Corbett » Mon Nov 16, 2020 12:50 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote:Neumann KH120s (or KH80s) and one of the matching subs (KH810 or KH750)? That's what I'd do...

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/neumann-kh120a-kh810

Giving this a bump as I work towards getting myself set up.

The Neumann's look good, only issue is the sub - the 810 is much too large for my current space - current studio is only 3m x 4m, although will be moving to new space that's 5m x 6m at some point, hopefully next year, and the 750 is apparently a horrible mess requiring a seriously buggy iPad app to be able to use at all, which I'm sure will suddenly become unsupported in the next few years.

Suggestions for an alternative set up, or different sub?
User avatar
Jez Corbett
Frequent Poster
Posts: 533
Joined: Fri Mar 21, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Helsinki, Finland
http://www.jeremycorbett.co.uk

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby blinddrew » Mon Nov 16, 2020 1:06 pm

That seems to be quite a negative take on the 750? Mike Senior was not overwhelmed by the app but liked the sub: https://www.soundonsound.com/forum/view ... 27&t=70046
And the thing about the app is that once your studio is set up that's it, no more need for it.
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 12907
Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 12:00 am
Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Jez Corbett » Mon Nov 16, 2020 1:32 pm

blinddrew wrote:That seems to be quite a negative take on the 750? Mike Senior was not overwhelmed by the app but liked the sub: https://www.soundonsound.com/forum/view ... 27&t=70046
And the thing about the app is that once your studio is set up that's it, no more need for it.

I found a thread on Gearslutz with a lot of people very unhappy with it, and promised features just haven't happened with it - it seems development completely stalled about a year ago. I don't want to invest in a set up with the plan of it lasting me the next 10 years potentially and find it just wont work any more after a few years due to an unsupported app that shouldn't be necessary at all.
User avatar
Jez Corbett
Frequent Poster
Posts: 533
Joined: Fri Mar 21, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Helsinki, Finland
http://www.jeremycorbett.co.uk

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Ramirez » Mon Nov 16, 2020 2:07 pm

I think the app is only needed if you want to use the DSP features?

Having used a few Neumann monitors, and going by what I’ve read from trusted reviewers, I’m sure the KH750 sounds exceptional.
Ramirez
Frequent Poster
Posts: 1198
Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2006 12:00 am
Location: Pwllheli, Cymru
www.stiwdiosain.cymru

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby zenguitar » Mon Nov 16, 2020 2:29 pm

Of course it's OK for people to complain about features that have been promised but not yet delivered. And there could be many reasons why the App development has stopped over the last 12 months, we are living in strange times after all.

But it is worth considering whether the KH750 will meet your needs with the App as it stands. If you can set up your surround system with the App as it stands, you should have nothing to worry about.

Andy :beamup:
User avatar
zenguitar
Moderator
Posts: 11048
Joined: Thu Dec 05, 2002 1:00 am
Location: Devon
liberté, frivolité et vanité

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Luke W » Mon Nov 16, 2020 2:38 pm

Jez Corbett wrote:I found a thread on Gearslutz with a lot of people very unhappy with it

That can be true of lots of products :lol:

In seriousness though I do see your point, but depending on what you need to do it may not have a big enough impact to write off the product entirely.
User avatar
Luke W
Frequent Poster
Posts: 608
Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2009 1:00 am
Location: Northamptonshire, UK
Studio - Techical Audio Services - Bespoke Construction

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Mon Nov 16, 2020 7:06 pm

The app was horrendously late in arriving for the KH80s, and seems, to me at least, to be a bit of a pig's ear. I don't know whether Neumann bit of more than they could actually deliver, or whether they didn't spec it well enough to a third party developer, or what the problem is... But to have an app that only works on an iPad and still doesn't do all it was promised after so long is embarrassing to say the least!

Having said that... if you do have an iPad, and the core functions are adequate for your needs, I think it does what it should well enough.

But if you're put off the obvious alternative for sat/sub systems with great integration is the Genelec marque. Lots of neat solutions there...
User avatar
Hugh Robjohns
Moderator
Posts: 29545
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Worcestershire, UK
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Jez Corbett » Mon Nov 23, 2020 1:21 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote:The app was horrendously late in arriving for the KH80s, and seems, to me at least, to be a bit of a pig's ear. I don't know whether Neumann bit of more than they could actually deliver, or whether they didn't spec it well enough to a third party developer, or what the problem is... But to have an app that only works on an iPad and still doesn't do all it was promised after so long is embarrassing to say the least!

I do have an iPad, but yeah I'd be worried more it will just suddenly stop working one day. I understand the idea it's a set up once and leave it type of thing, but working in games I may need to change my surround configurations to match different standards, potentially multiple times a day. I just can't risk it.

Funnily enough, I've never got on with Genelec subs, they always felt like a separate 'thing' to me, never really part of a whole like other subs I've used. Any other recommendations?
User avatar
Jez Corbett
Frequent Poster
Posts: 533
Joined: Fri Mar 21, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Helsinki, Finland
http://www.jeremycorbett.co.uk

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Mon Nov 23, 2020 3:47 pm

Erm... PMC or ATC? :-)

Obviously, all the big well-known brands now offer subs with varying levels of sophistication and integration. But I can't really recommend anything outsid the ones I've mentioned as I don't have that much experience of them all. The Neumanns, PMCs, ATCs and Genelecs I do know quite well and can be reasonably confident of them.
User avatar
Hugh Robjohns
Moderator
Posts: 29545
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Worcestershire, UK
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby baward » Mon Nov 23, 2020 4:15 pm

After Hugh's recommendation at the time, I went for Neumann KH-80s, and if I did, I would have two more at the back and one in the centre (no sub for me). Really great little speakers, I am very happy with them.

MInd you, I am a hobbyist really, and don't make a living from music/audio.
baward
Regular
Posts: 356
Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2003 1:00 am
 

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby blinddrew » Mon Nov 23, 2020 6:10 pm

Worth looking at Dynaudio as well perhaps?
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 12907
Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 12:00 am
Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby Jez Corbett » Mon Jan 18, 2021 7:15 pm

Hello, I'm looking at this again as I'll be starting the project that required the upgrade in a few weeks and should really get on with it!

Current situation is, the Neumann setup still looks good, however I have reservations about the sub options ... howeverrr... they might not actually be an issue. But lets ask some questions:

1. I realise the 750 is designed for being an accompaniment to a stereo setup, not a surround one. But I guess, looking at the back, I can just route my sub channel to Input B and it will just work as a standalone sub? Seems I can't use it to do bass management of a 5.1 system regardless of my issues with the app?

2. Maybe the 810 isn't too big, but anything else I should consider? No to Genelec please, I have never got on with the sound of their midpriced subs.

3. The 120 x 750 combo plus all the bits I need is looking like about €4500. Might I see a dramatic improvement if I were to, say, double that budget?
User avatar
Jez Corbett
Frequent Poster
Posts: 533
Joined: Fri Mar 21, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Helsinki, Finland
http://www.jeremycorbett.co.uk

Re: Surround monitoring considerations

Postby DanDan » Mon Jan 18, 2021 7:42 pm

5 x KH310 plus any old sub for the LFE
User avatar
DanDan
Regular
Posts: 73
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:00 am
Location: Cork Ireland
Dan FitzGerald MIOA  MAES
www.irishacoustics.com
www.soundsound.ie

Next