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Second set of monitors, which ones?

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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Tue Jan 15, 2019 1:13 pm

Random Guitarist wrote:I find myself disagreeing slightly. (but respectfully) I have Focal CMS40s and AE22s. The AE22s are excellent, but after a while they can feel a bit harsh on the ears, so I switch to the focals a lot during the day job.

I'm not at all surprised. The AE22 has a degree of intentional mid-range prominence which is useful when mixing (in a similar way to the famed NS10), but that does become fatiguing and distracting for more casual listening. In contrast, the CMS40 is a very flat and accurate monitor, revealing without exaggerating.

It's a personal thing to a large extent, but I prefer my primary monitors to be flat and neutral, and then use something like an Auratone to assess the midrange focus (usually in mono).

Here are some detailed test reviews of the two speakers you mention from Resolution magazine which illustrate their tonal -- and temporal (ref your cabinet comments) -- differences quite nicely:

https://www.resolutionmag.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/Acoustic-Energy-AE22.pdf

https://www.resolutionmag.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/Focal-CMS-40.pdf

H
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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby ef37a » Tue Jan 15, 2019 4:34 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote:I removed it for you to avoid further confusion! :D

I find that if the monitor speaker is a genuine monitor speaker -- ie, not an NS10 or anything pretending to do the same thing as that -- then listening for pleasure isn't a problem.

Okay, a monitor reveals flaws in mixes which a hi-fi type speaker might 'gloss over', and that can make some tracks a little distracting, but if you listen to quality music then there's no problem. Most of the speakers in this house are 'proper monitors' (PMC IB1s, PMC TB2As, KH310s), and yet I use them just as much for pleasure listening too without any concerns.

H

SO glad you said that Hugh! Many forums (often American) still trot out this old saw that hi fi speakers are "tweaked" to sound nice*. Such a thing would enrage the likes of Peter Walker of Quad fame. His electrostatics were a revalation in low colouration and accuracy and a sort of benchmark that folks like Spendor aimed for.

Before The Silliness took over a couple of decades ago the acid test for speakers in the Hi Fi press was "do they sound like actual instruments and people talking". NOT "do they sound nice". Many other UK companies KEF, B&W, Castle were also in the business of accuracy.

I presently use a pair of Tannoy 5As but aspire one day to something very much better. The 310a's are probably a little TOO expensive and large. Top of my short list at the moment is the Result 6. I like "basic" but good engineering. These will be my everyday pleasure speakers.

*I would think that would in any case be hard to do for all genres?

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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby akaspeedy » Tue Jan 15, 2019 7:53 pm

Ah yes ef37a, genre would be a big factor in my speaker purchase, which is why I was initially thinking the HEDD type 20's as they go low enough for house/techno.....they are 3 way.....have the lineariser plugin and both sound on sound and music radar gave them good reviews....in fact one of them mentioning that they are a pleasure to listen to as well as having the detail needed for accurate mix translations......

unless anyone can give thoughts on the other monitors, I'm swaying in their direction at the moment....

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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby ef37a » Tue Jan 15, 2019 8:21 pm

akaspeedy wrote:Ah yes ef37a, genre would be a big factor in my speaker purchase, which is why I was initially thinking the HEDD type 20's as they go low enough for house/techno.....they are 3 way.....have the lineariser plugin and both sound on sound and music radar gave them good reviews....in fact one of them mentioning that they are a pleasure to listen to as well as having the detail needed for accurate mix translations......

unless anyone can give thoughts on the other monitors, I'm swaying in their direction at the moment....

Aka Bob

Ah! I meant it would I think be difficult to make a speaker that flattered say techno but was also "nice" for folk or jazz?

The "perfect" speaker would of course have no character of its own so everthing would sound good OR bad according to the quality of the source.

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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby akaspeedy » Tue Jan 15, 2019 8:47 pm

I figured you meant that hence why I'm looking for speakers for house/techno that I think I mentioned in an earlier post....although I do listen to to the odd/rare piece of classical.......and I mean rare...lol......house/techno or dance music in general is where I'm heading with my speaker purchase......

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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby R_A » Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:02 pm

Maybe think about adding one of the smaller ATC models to your demo list.
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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby Martin Walker » Wed Jan 16, 2019 12:09 pm

R_A wrote:Maybe think about adding one of the smaller ATC models to your demo list.

Very revealing, particularly across the midrange, but bass extension might be an issue for house/techno music, as while they do go very low, the bottom end does start rolling off higher than some.

I love mine, but have them placed close to the front wall to benefit from the room mode low boost ;)


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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby akaspeedy » Sat Jan 19, 2019 12:48 pm

Looked at several atc and nothing in the 3k price range extends low enough so Ive not added them to my shortlist. Anyone know which U.K. companies offer try before you buy....??

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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby Luke W » Sat Jan 19, 2019 2:03 pm

Give KMR a try, they were really helpful when I bought my monitors not long back. I did go there for a demo, but they may be willing to help.
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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby John Willett » Sat Jan 19, 2019 4:28 pm

Luke W wrote:Give KMR a try, they were really helpful when I bought my monitors not long back. I did go there for a demo, but they may be willing to help.

KMR definitely do demos and home demos - and most of the major distributors have loan demo modeld they can loan customers / dealers. :thumbup:

The Studio Shop also do this (but have a smaller range). :thumbup:
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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby javahut » Sat Jan 19, 2019 5:58 pm

Got the HEDD Type 20a couple months ago. They are awesome, and work for multiple styles of music and applications.

They're great for electronic... enough low end to detail it in your mixes, along with distortion free mids and high end clarity. And the 20 work equally well for jazz and acoustic music, as they have the mid and high end detail, but will not over emphasize the lows. If the lows are light in the mix, the Type 20 lets you know exactly what's there and what isn't.

They also have plenty of power and headroom for clean dynamic range, and to play back with volume if you need it. They're also a pleasure and quite fun for listening. Easy to discern differences in mixes and mastering.

I would bet the HEDD Type 20 are very close to what you're looking for and you'd be very happy with them.
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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby akaspeedy » Sun Jan 20, 2019 10:45 pm

Pretty sure I’m gonna go with the 3 way hedds then.....great reviews, plus ribbon tweeter.....has power and amazing low end.......looking at my list I’m struggling to see any competitors now....the kh310 look great, sealed cabinets as well, but are a little dated now....and the rest are 2 way which I already have a pair (sonodynes sm100ak)

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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby James Perrett » Sun Jan 20, 2019 11:16 pm

akaspeedy wrote:the kh310 look great, sealed cabinets as well, but are a little dated now....

Good monitor designs don't date that quickly. I'm happily using 40 year old monitors. Newer designs than mine may not need to be as big to give the same bass response and they may be able to handle more power but I wouldn't rule out a monitor based on age. It would be worth listening to a few on your shortlist before making a final decision.
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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby Jack Ruston » Mon Jan 21, 2019 9:39 am

Makes sense. I'm a 40+ design, and while I'm a little dated, and lack modern bells and whistles, I like to think I can still deliver.

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Re: Second set of monitors, which ones?

Postby Hrodulf » Mon Jan 21, 2019 11:29 am

First of all, I don't see much sense in keeping two monitors with such great overlap in utility. One is an upper entry-level near field, whilst the other is high-ish-end small near/mid-field.

Chances are the HEDD Type 20 will completely eclipse your Sonodyne as it should do everything better. Who cares if it's a 3-way, provided the drivers are integrated properly, the summing should be seamless at pretty much all frequencies and practical listening distances.

And what do you consider outdated in the KH310 design? It's the only sanely priced (sorry, ATC) sealed 3-way with a dome midrange driver.
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