Master Mi

Faithful studio monitor speakers with flat frequency response and crystal clear sound

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Yo, dudes.

I already have some good professional producer headphones (Sony MDR 7506 and Beyerdynamic DT 880 Pro, connected to a Lake People G109-P headphone amp, meanwhile - I'll definitely keep up with those!) and I had at least a not too bad multimedia speaker system (Logitech Z533) some time ago.

But then I was lookin' for a nice studio monitor speaker system, because it can be still a big difference concerning accurate listening and mixing experience.
I've tested some studio monitors in a store before - but I wasn't really that satisfied with those because the bass was way to heavy or not defined enough. And in general it wasn 't the crystal clear sound quality I had expected - except at some really big and expensive concert speakers I couldn't afford and for which I haven't had enough place (not to mention the possible electricity bill by using those things :D).

I really had an eye for some Yamaha-NS-10-like studio monitors - 'cause some top producers would probably say that if a mix sounds great on these speakers, the mix would sound good on any other speaker systems.

In the end I was looking for a speaker system with following features:
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1) truthful, flat (not EQ-ed) and crystal clear sound
2) wanted to hear details you don't hear on every speaker system or headphones exactly (like if there's too much or too less reverb, if the bass is tight enough or if similar frequencies or their reverb effects bleed into each other)
3) should play a decently deep bass level where you don't miss relevant low frequencies
4) not too big in size - should fit on my desk, so a fitting size would be around >>> 20 cm * 25 cm * 20 cm (width/height/depth) at the maximum size
5) should be energy-saving speakers (around 100 to 150 W for both at the maximum level)
6) should have something like front bass ports ('cause the rear of the speakers would be directly at the wall or maybe a few centimeters away from the wall)
7) colour should be a mostly dark/black design
-----------------------------------------------------------

Maybe you have some extensive experiences with this topic and a good advice for me and all the others who are concerned with the studio monitor or speaker system stuff.


At my momentary level of knowledge and experience with studio monitors I would choose between following ones, if you have a bigger or specially for room acoustics treated producer room:
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1) Neumann KH 120 A >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/neumann_kh_120_a.htm
(very expensive, but really high-end German quality with one of the best sound quality and flattest frequency responses you might get at this size and price range, front bass ports, 100 W per speaker)

2) Genelec 8020 DPM >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/genelec_8020_dpm.htm
(well-known high-end studio monitors made in Finland, highly impressing sound quality, accuracy und frequency range for its small size, kinda unstylish design for my taste, but might be really good for room acoustics, rear bass ports, 100 W per speaker)

3) Yamaha MSP 5 Studio >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/yamaha_msp_5_studio.htm
(amazing successor series of the legendary Yamaha NS-10, pretty solid 'n' heavy stuff, top Japanese quality, might not have that accurate flat frequency response I was expecting from those according to their pretty unique sound response with obviously a little bit overemphasized mid and high frequencies and a bit lacking bass response (but totally tight, well-defined bass - no muddy, roaring or room-flooding bass - might be good for medium-sized, untreated rooms as well) compared to all the others, but overall crystal clear sound quality (Yamaha MSP series have some of the cleanest, most detailed and well-defined sound I've ever listened to within a set of studio monitors), great spaciousness and stereo panorama reproduction, with well presented and very detailed mid and high frequencies you 'll get a very pleasant, smooth and airy sound feeling - kinda made for listening to atmospheric soundscapes, really low wattage, great frequency range from 50 to 40000 Hz for their compact size, design could be a bit more stylish, front bass ports, pretty energy-saving - only around 40 to 70 W per speaker)

4) Adam A5X >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/adam_a5x.htm
(pretty expensive, but also high-end German quality with a kinda accurate flat frequency response, seem to be slightly boosted at bass frequencies and have some harsher high frequencies - unique, but more machine-like than natural sound, highest frequency range from 50 to 50000 Hz, not oversized and pretty stylish design, front bass ports, 100 W per speaker)

5) Presonus Eris E5 >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/presonus_eris_e5.htm
(pretty solid newcomer from USA with great sound quality, kinda flat frequency response and a really unbeatable price of around 220 bucks for a pair, very stylish design, very compact size, front bass ports, around 80 W per speaker)

6) JBL LSR 305 MKII >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/jbl_lsr_305p_mkii.htm
(decent stuff, nice frequency range from 43 to 24000 Hz, solid design, acceptable size and really nice price (I've also seen an offer of a 2-speakers bundle and 2 stands for only 249 Euros), unfortunately with rear bass ports, some users complain about minimal hissing noises and that you have to turn up the volume a bit more to hear everything you need, 82 W per speaker)

7) Adam T5V or T7V >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/adam_t5v.htm
                                 >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/adam_t7v.htm
(were actually some of my favorite studio monitors back then 'cause of the top German quality, the good range into the lower bass sections until 45 or 39 Hz up to the higher frequencies until 25000 Hz, the nice price, the awesome design, the low wattage - but the size (depth around 30 cm!!!) and the rear bass ports could be a problem, might sound a little bit harsh, bass-heavy and machine-like, pretty hard to listen to at lower volumes, around 70 W per speaker)
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If you have a smaller music production room and/or don't want to treat your studio environment especially for room acoustic, I would definitely go for a less big set of studio monitors (because larger studio monitors in small, untreated rooms can make the perceived sound quality a lot worse (and kinda useless for mixing) than some of the better PC desktop speakers.
In this case you should have look at these smaller studio monitors:
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1) Yamaha MSP 3 >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/yamaha_msp3.htm
(typical Japanese high-end studio monitors in their smallest version within the Yamaha MSP series, heavy and solid building quality, kinda useful frequency response for its highly compact size, for lacking lower bass a proper subwoofer should be added, very clean and well-defined sound quality within their still kinda outstanding frequency range from 65 to 22000 Hz, good spaciousness and stereo panorama reproduction for this size, really love the well presented and very detailed mid and high frequencies with the very pleasant, smooth and airy sound feeling - kinda made for listening to atmospheric soundscapes, won't annoy you with any kind of strange inherent noises, nice to listen to and mixing with even on lower volumes, front bass ports, some of the most energy-saving studio monitors with only about 20 to 30 W per speaker)

2) Adam A3X >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/adam_a3x.htm
(solid high-end studio monitors made in Germany, largest frequency range for smaller studio monitors from 60 to 50000 Hz, typical Adam studio monitor sound - a little bit machine-like with kinda harsh higher frequencies and tight, pumping bass frequencies, pretty futuristic design, front bass ports, about 50 W per speaker)

3) Genelec 8010 AP >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/genelec_8010_ap.htm
(perhaps the most space-saving high-end studio monitors, very detailed and accurate sound quality, sound much bigger than these small studio monitors are, for this small set of studio monitors the design seems much more agreeable than the similar design of the much bigger brothers from Genelec, rear bass ports, about 50 W per speaker)

4) Presonus Eris E3.5 or E4.5 >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/presonus_eris_e3.5.htm
                                                >>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/presonus_eris_e45.htm
(pretty good and well-defined sound quality for these 2 pairs of studio monitors, not too heavy, with sizes that might fit on nearly every desk, only a very low level of inherent noises on moderate volumes if you get with your ears close to the tweeters, for detailed mids and higher frequencies I'd go for the Presonus Eris E3.5, for a fuller and more flat sound I'd choose the Presonus Eris E4.5 (lower mids might interfere with bass a bit more in this case), both versions have different kinds of acoustic tuning settings, very stylish design, pleasant to listen to and mixing with even on lower volumes, unfortunately not biamped and only with rear bass ports, unbeatable price with only around 100 for the whole pair of Presonus Eris 3.5 or about 180 bucks for the whole pair of Presonus Eris 4.5, also some of the most energy-saving studio monitors with only about 25 W per speaker)


If you are going to buy some of those smaller studio monitors, I would recommend to buy an additional smaller subwoofer which can generate a really clean, accurate, highly defined, tight and dry bass and sub-bass down to 40 Hz.
By adding a subwoofer (and maybe by turning down the bass on the monitors in return to let the mids shine a bit more) you will also have a pretty decent 3-way speaker system with kinda clean und very well-separated basses, mids and treble.

In this case I would totally recommend the pretty small, but kinda powerful and - with a wattage of only 50 W - highly energy-saving Japanese subwoofer Fostex PM-SUBmini 2:
>>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/fostex_pm_submini_2.htm

-------------------------------------------

If you want to compare the sound and frequency response of several studio monitor speakers a bit more with your own ears and eyes, there's also a pretty useful Youtube channel at which the uploader called Digital Stereophony makes kinda professional comparisons between lots of studio monitors and/or hi-fi speakers within a series of different soundtracks.

In his newer uploads he has also added the original source sound of the soundtracks for a better comparison of the speakers - and further on, he has added the frequency response graphs of the speakers at the end of his newer videos.
According to his own writings these are the frequency response graphs of the speakers in a semi-treated room.

So, if you are still looking for some studio monitors, feel free to have a detailed look at his speaker sound comparisons.
>>> https://www.youtube.com/user/skubny/videos

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Update: My own studio monitor equipment - a fairly professional, very energy-efficient 3-way studio monitor system for under 300 bucks
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A little bit unsatisfied with the roaring sound of my former, kinda big Adam T5V studio monitor speakers in my small room, I decided to get a smaller speaker system which could easily keep up with the high sound quality.
After waiting a few months, I could finally check out my brand-new 3-way speaker system which consists of the following components:

1) Studio monitor speakers >>> Presonus Eris E3.5
>>> https://www.amazon.com/PreSonus-E3-5-3-5-Professional-Multimedia-Reference/dp/B075QVMBT9

2) Subwoofer >>> Fostex PM-SUBmini 2
>>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/fostex_pm_submini_2.htm?ref=intl&shp=eyJjb3VudHJ5IjoiZ2IiLCJjdXJyZW5jeSI6IjIiLCJsYW5ndWFnZSI6ImVuIn0%3D

The beloved equipment is already prepared and adjusted - while the subwoofer just stands on its little feet on my floor covering in front of my feet (really love it to have some bass in the center just like in the mix), the speakers are placed on slightly angled absorber pads on my desk (at a distance of about 80 centimeters to each other and about 60 centimeters in front of me, slighty turned inwards and pointing in the direction of my ears).
The system is set up in my living room which is around 4 meters long, about 6 meters deep (in this direction the sound of the speakers goes primarily) and over 2,5 meters high.
The room itself is not specially prepared for musical purposes (for example with wall absorber mats or things like that) because I really like the bright Mediterranean colours and cosy atmosphere of this room - especially when it is flooded with sunlight.

The whole speaker system is connected to my Steinberg UR44 audio interface.
Formerly, I had set the EQ settings of the speakers to normal (centered positions of the knobs for the acoustic tuning) - but some time later I have decided to turn down the knob for the bass control from 50 % (centered position) to around 25 %. So, I can hear the mid frequencies of the studio monitors even better in contrast to the bass frequencies of the subwoofer.
The frequency range of the speakers is 80 - 20000 Hz - while the subwoofer has a frequency range of 40 - 150 Hz and a variable crossover frequency switch that can be adjusted between 60 and 150 Hz (used the lowest setting of 60 Hz to separate the moderate bass of the speakers and the deep bass of the subwoofer much better and to avoid unneccessary overlappings of frequencies with this setting).
The speaker volume is turned up at around 50 %, while the subwoofer volume is only turned up at around 25 % - just to add only a small and decent amount of deep bass for getting the most faithful results of the sound within a kinda flat frequency response.

With this setup I could achieve a really amazing sound experience for many different music genres - like electronic music, rock/metal, jazz and especially classical music.
I'm really in love with these speakers because the sound is totally clean and highly defined. The bass, the mids and the treble are really well-balanced (nothing seems to stick out or sound too weak here) and well separated from each other.
And in addition to that I can hear some more details I couldn't even hear with my 2nd best professional studio headphones (Sony MDR-7506) - for example, I can hear if there's just a bit too much reverb in the track or if some frequencies of different instruments are interfering with each other too much and create a muddy sound.

Compared to my former (and much bigger) studio monitors Adam T5V which sounded totally awesome in the big music store room - but really roared in my small room where a clean sound with these speakers wasn't possible anymore (cause of this I brought them back in the store) - the sound of my new Presonus Eris E3.5 speakers perfectly fills my living room and makes a really nice and clean sound.

Just by the sound they might be pretty close to the Yamaha HS speaker series - although the Presonus speakers have a bit less salient treble and top end frequencies, but fully present mids (which seems to be a pretty rare phenomenon at most studio monitor speakers) and a slighty warmer bass which - altogether - makes a fuller, very detailed sound with a quite flat frequency response in an untreated room.
They could also keep up with some of the smaller Genelec speakers - especially if you compare the larger Presonus Eris E4.5 studio monitor speakers with the Genelec 8010A speakers.
>>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OjbZQoLviY

But I decided to take the smaller Presonus Eris E3.5 speakers because I didn't want to risk getting the roaring effects of the former bigger speakers in my room once again and I thought the smaller ones could be quite perfect for my little or medium-sized room.
Another important point is that the mids of the Presonus Eris E3.5 speakers don't seem to interfere with the bass frequencies so much - compared to the Presonus Eris E4.5 speakers (which make a bit deeper and stronger bass) as you can hear in this video.
>>>


So, in the case of the Presonus Eris E3.5 speakers you really have some very clean treble and some well-defined mids which don't tend to bleed into the still pretty decent amount of lower frequencies.

And the missing part of the lower frequencies comes on a separate way with the subwoofer Fostex PM-SUBmini 2.
So, with this combination you probably have one of the best small home studio speaker systems you can set up in a small and totally unprepared room like this.

In addition to the speakers' lower frequencies this subwoofer contributes a decent amount of deep bass until 40 Hz.
Compared to the subwoofer unit of my former Logitech Z533 multimedia speaker system the Fostex PM-SUBmini 2 is not just an oversized roaring cube.
It's not some kind of Magitek with which you can create heavy earthquakes and tear down whole buildings - but I guess this shouldn't be an ultimate goal of a composer.
Instead this little subwoofer can shake your room if you turn its volume up to the maximum (of course you shouldn't do this in a flat with lots of nice and peaceful neighbours around - and, as I mentioned before, I recommend a setup with just 25 % of the maximal volume at the subwoofer and 50 % of the maximal volume at the speakers).
But no matter how you set the volume of this awesome subwoofer, it always comes with a highly defined, radically crisp bass.
You can easily listen to the high quality of the subwoofer bass if you turn off just the speakers while listening to a soundtrack with lots of lower frequencies while leaving just the subwoofer turned on.
I'm sure you'll fall in love with this pretty smooth and clean bass.

If you keep in mind that this combinated speaker system has also a very low power consumption (2 * 25 W for the speakers and around 50 W for the subwoofer - makes 100 W in total for the whole system) - especially compared to many other studio monitor speakers (which often surpass 100 W easily - even without a subwoofer) - it's also one of the best energy-saving high-quality home studio speaker systems you can get in the music stores at the moment.

I also like the fact that both devices are really silent in the idle mode - you might only perceive some inherent noises if you get with your ears really close to the tweeters of the Presonus Eris E3.5.

Another important thing I really like about this speaker system as a whole is the really awesome design.
The black colour, the very stylish tweeters, woofers and control elements, as well as the neon blue LED of the Presonus Eris E3.5 speakers fit totally with the black design of the Fostex PM-SUBmini 2 subwoofer (which also contains a neon blue LED) - and of course the design of the whole system totally fits the rest of my dominantly black PC and studio environment.

So, if you really look for an accurate, faithful and a very energy-saving, pretty stylish speaker system with which you can hear lots of details in the sound and which fits on an ordinary desk - no matter if you want to use it for a down-to-earth home studio, for playing video games or for other multimedia applications - you should give this really amazing studio monitor speaker & subwoofer combo definitely a try.

Edited by Master Mi

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M-Audio, KRK, and Yamaha are pretty popular for near-field monitors, should meet all your specifications, and they're pretty much all "flat-frequency-response" as they can get it.

However, you have to be sure that your room isn't going to undo that.

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Thanks for the quick response. ))

I edited the topic with some good studio monitor speakers in my momentarily closest range according to my current knowledge if you want to have a look at, too.

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So, you don't think that the Yamaha studio monitors (MSP series are the more professional versions - compared with the HS (Home Studio) versions)) are a bit too bright and high-pitched compared to the natural sound signals?
 

 

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1 hour ago, Master Mi said:

So, you don't think that the Yamaha studio monitors (MSP series are the more professional versions - compared with the HS (Home Studio) versions)) are a bit too bright and high-pitched compared to the natural sound signals?
 

 

The 5-inch probably, but the 7-inch is well balanced for my purposes (mostly orchestral).

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I had a chance to demo the Adam A7x's next to the new T7V's about a week ago. 

The T7V's sounded like toys by comparison.

Even more to their detriment, the T7V's are rear-ported as compared to the front-ported A7x's.

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I have the JBL LSR’s and had the Yamaha HS5 before. While the Yamaha had better built quality (it’s hefty), they are also very top heavy and lack bass. I didn’t care for the sound much, not to listen to, not to mix on. The JBL’s sound a lot nicer to my ears, also great for normal listening, and for me they seem to translate pretty well. I did plug the sound holes on the back because they are close to the wall and would sound boomey otherwise. From a bang for the buck perspective I would recommend to check them out to.

Caveat: I do like 95% of my mixing on headphones.

 

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Thanks for the many different points of view.

Is somebody able to make a comparison (based on own listening experiences) between JBL LSR 305 and the Adam T5V or Adam A5X series?

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21 minutes ago, timaeus222 said:

Just wanted to point out, @Jorito seemed to be talking about the HS5, and @Neifion was referring to the HS8.

Not quite, Neifion was talking about the HS7, the one with the 7" woofers (the HS8 has 8" woofers). 

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4 hours ago, Master Mi said:

Thanks for the many different points of view.

Is somebody able to make a comparison (based on own listening experiences) between JBL LSR 305 and the Adam T5V or Adam A5X series?

The jbl 305 and 308 also sound like toys next to the a7x, based on a different listening experience of mine. I have not had the chance to demo the jbl's against the t5v's.

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Dudes - I've checked out the Adam T5V. They were awesome in the store to listen to (even in comparison with the A7X, T5V seem to make a deeper bass and a cleaner sound somehow) - and now at least I know that I've mixed my coming Lufia remix already very well with my headphones and my Logitech Z533 speaker system.

I bought the Adam T5V studio monitors - but in my room I recognized that they are roaring so much that this would probably mean war with my neighborhood. The sound is really too heavy for my flat.
So, I guess I'll bring them back and stick with my Logitech Z533 speaker system which has obviously the perfect size and sound for my production room in my flat.

It's really annoying because I was really on fire to go for some high quality studio monitors.

But maybe somebody has another tip for me what could be a good quality 3-way speaker system (high & mid speakers + subwoofer bass) that could be useful for production purposes in a medium-sized flat as well (primarily an energy-saving speaker system with good sound quality, flat frequency response, black/dark colour and a cool design) instead - at least something which has a bit smaller size than studio monitors and which doesn't roar that heavy...

What do you guys think about a combination of:

1) Presonus Eris 3.5 Monitor Speakers
>>> https://www.amazon.com/PreSonus-Eris-E3-5-Professional-Multimedia/dp/B075QVMBT9
>>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2o9GCtaimjU

and

2) Yamaha NS SW 50 Subwoofer
>>> https://www.amazon.com/YAMAHA-subwoofer-NS-SW050-B-Black/dp/B01LZRLF6E/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1526718076&sr=8-7&keywords=Yamaha+NS+50

Subwoofer could be a bit smaller - but wouldn't this be a great 3-way studio speaker as well (compared to my Logitech Z533) to hear most of the details in a mix within a small room and without my professional headphones?

 

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13 hours ago, Dextastic said:

The jbl 305 and 308 also sound like toys next to the a7x, based on a different listening experience of mine. I have not had the chance to demo the jbl's against the t5v's.

Makes total sense, as you can literally buy 4-5 of them for the price of a single a7x ;)

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Insane - found a nice combo of a smaller 3-way-speaker system with subwoofer for my sharp-eared flat that might be good for mixing and music production purposes - though its smaller size.

1) Presonus Eris 3.5 Speakers
>>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/presonus_eris_e3.5.htm?ref=intl&shp=eyJjb3VudHJ5IjoiZ2IiLCJjdXJyZW5jeSI6IjIiLCJsYW5ndWFnZSI6ImVuIn0%3D
>>> https://www.amazon.com/PreSonus-Eris-E3-5-Professional-Multimedia/dp/B075QVMBT9/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?s=musical-instruments&ie=UTF8&qid=1526725108&sr=1-1-spons&keywords=presonus+eris+3.5&psc=1
                                               
and

2) Fostex PM-SUBmini 2
>>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/fostex_pm_submini_2.htm?ref=intl&shp=eyJjb3VudHJ5IjoiZ2IiLCJjdXJyZW5jeSI6IjIiLCJsYW5ndWFnZSI6ImVuIn0%3D

I guess this could work even for ordinary flats with noise-sensitive people around - within a smaller studio environment where you still can hear a good amount of details with an hopefully flat frequency response at the right hardware settings.

I ordered the stuff after checking lots of alternatives in the smaller studio size sections and will be able to test the new stuff in about two weeks - will leave ya a feedback if somebody is interested.

What's your opinion about (or maybe your experience with) those two components for smaller studio environments?

And what do you think sounds better and more natural with a good flat frequency response - Presonus Eris 3.5 or 4.5?
I tend to go for Presonus Eris 3.5 because there the mids don't seem to mix up with the bass in the speakers so much - so it could be working excellently with the subwoofer as a separate bass unit. ))

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Nowadays small details of response comparison between studio monitors are moot and needless effort to shop around for. If you pick up Sonarworks Reference 4 w/ their mic, then once you set up your monitors in the right configuration, calibrate the Reference 4 profile. The mic will detect differences between expected signal sound and what both your monitors and room are giving you, and apply a counter filter that cancels the differences out. You do have to manually set it to linear phase, which adds some latency to your path, but having that un-affected phase response is crucial.

It gets you way better results than agonizing over configuration settings. The important thing is that you just buy a good quality set with a decent response and then have your room at least minimally treated so that Reference doesn't have to do an unnatural amount of work to fix it.

Reference mostly gets a ton of praise all around, but also a small handful of disappointed customers, so you can shop around for other companies that do the same thing, there are multiple ones.

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/Ref4StuMicBun--sonarworks-reference-4-studio-with-mic

That being said, your mileage may vary if you're throwing a subwoofer in there too, since it needs to calculate L/R independently. Honestly like... a subwoofer isn't necessary, and I see of accomplished (home) engineers leaving it out of their setups. Getting something above 5" drivers for your monitors will already guarantee you a good sounding bass response.

Getting a sub can actually be detrimental if your room isn't right for it, or you aren't prepared to potentially do a lot of interior design work to make it work.

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By the way, no set of monitors is going to sound crystal clear unless you treat your room. sonarworks might help in an untreated room but it will add some coloration (as all eq's do-either transient smearing or pre-ringing) and it can't do anything about standing waves.

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I'm not a too big fan of adapting my cosy living room for my speaker system (especially not with those unesthetic dark wall absorber mats) - I rather prefer buying a speaker system that really fits my room.

Unfortunately the store won't get the whole new speaker system until late August 2018 - so it seems like I have to wait over 2 months to get my first chance to give ya a little review of this obviously pretty awesome small-size studio speaker system combo.

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Professional, very energy-efficient 3-way studio monitor system for under 300 bucks
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

After waiting a few months I could finally check out my brand-new 3-way speaker system which consists of the following components:

1) Studio monitor speakers >>> Presonus Eris 3.5
>>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/presonus_eris_e3.5.htm?ref=intl&shp=eyJjb3VudHJ5IjoiZ2IiLCJjdXJyZW5jeSI6IjIiLCJsYW5ndWFnZSI6ImVuIn0%3D
>>> https://www.amazon.com/PreSonus-E3-5-3-5-Professional-Multimedia-Reference/dp/B075QVMBT9

2) Subwoofer >>> Fostex PM-SUBmini 2
>>> https://www.thomann.de/gb/fostex_pm_submini_2.htm?ref=intl&shp=eyJjb3VudHJ5IjoiZ2IiLCJjdXJyZW5jeSI6IjIiLCJsYW5ndWFnZSI6ImVuIn0%3D

The beloved equipment is already prepared and adjusted - while the subwoofer just stands on its little feet on my floor covering in front of my feet (love it to have some bass in the center just like in the mix) the speakers are placed on slightly angled absorber pads on my desk (at a distance of about 80 centimeters to each other and about 60 centimeters in front of me, slighty turned inwards and pointing almost in the direction of my ears).
The system is set up in my living room which is around 4 meters long, about 6 meters deep (in this direction the sound of the speakers goes primarily) and over 2,5 meters high.
The room itself is not specially prepared for musical purposes (for example with wall absorber mats or things like that) because I really like the bright Mediterranean colours and cosy atmosphere of this room - especially when it is flooded with sunlight.

The whole speaker system is connected to my Steinberg UR22 USB audio interface.
The EQ settings of the speakers are set to normal (centered positions of the knobs).
The frequency range of the speakers is 80 - 20000 Hz - while the subwoofer has a frequency range of 40 - 150 Hz and a variable crossover frequency switch that can be adjusted between 60 - 150 Hz (used the lowest setting of 60 Hz to separate the moderate bass of the speakers and the deep bass of the subwoofer much better and to avoid unneccessary overlappings of frequencies with this setting).
The speaker volume is turned up at around 50 %, while the subwoofer volume is only turned up at around 25 % - just to add only a small and decent amount of deep bass for getting the most faithful results of the sound within a flat frequency response.

With this setup I could achieve a really amazing sound experience for many different music genres - like electronic music, rock/metal, jazz and especially classical music.
I'm really in love with these speakers because the sound is totally clean and highly defined. The bass, the mids and the treble are really well-balanced (nothing seems to stick out or sound too weak here) and well separated from each other.
And in addition to that I can hear some more details I couldn't even hear with my professional studio headphones (Sony MDR-7506) - for example, I can hear if there's just a bit too much reverb in the track or if some frequencies of different instruments are interfering with each other too much and create a muddy sound.

Compared to my former (and much bigger) speakers Adam T5V which sounded totally awesome in the big music store room - but really roared in my small room where a clean sound with these speakers wasn't possible anymore (cause of this I brought them back in the store) - the sound of my new Presonus Eris 3.5 speakers perfectly fills my living room and makes a really nice and clean sound.

Just by the sound they might be pretty close to the Yamaha HS speaker series - although the Presonus speakers have a bit less salient treble, fully present mids (which seems to be a pretty rare phenomenon at most studio monitor speakers) and a slighty warmer bass which - altogether - make a fuller, very detailed sound with a quite flat frequency response.
They could also keep up with some of the smaller Genelec speakers - especially if you compare the larger Presonus Eris 4.5 studio monitor speakers with the Genelec 8010A speakers.
>>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OjbZQoLviY

But I decided to take the smaller Presonus Eris 3.5 speakers because I didn't want to risk the big speakers' roaring effect once again and I thought the smaller ones could be quite perfect for my little room.
Another important point is that the mids of the Presonus Eris 3.5 speakers don't seem to interfere with the bass frequencies so much - compared to the Presonus Eris 4.5 speakers (which make a bit deeper and stronger bass) as you can hear in this video.
>>>


So, in the case of the Presonus Eris 3.5 speakers you really have some very clean treble and some well-defined mids which don't tend to bleed into the still pretty decent amount of lower frequencies.

And the missing part of the lower frequencies comes on a separate way with the subwoofer Fostex PM-SUBmini 2.
So, with this combination you probably have one of the best small home studio speaker systems you can set up in a small and totally unprepared room like this.

In addition to the speakers' lower frequencies this subwoofer contributes a decent amount of deep bass until 40 Hz.
Compared to the subwoofer unit of my former Logitech Z533 multimedia speaker system the Fostex PM-SUBmini 2 is not just an oversized roaring cube.
It's not some kind of Magitek with which you can create heavy earthquakes and tear down whole buildings - but I guess this shouldn't be an ultimate goal of a composer.
Instead this little subwoofer can shake your room if you turn its volume up to the maximum (of course you shouldn't do this in a flat with lots of nice and peaceful neighbours around - and, as I mentioned before, I recommend a setup with just 25 % of the maximal volume at the subwoofer and 50 % of the maximal volume at the speakers).
But no matter how you set the volume of this awesome subwoofer, it always comes with a highly defined, radically crisp bass.
You can easily listen to the high quality of the subwoofer bass if you turn off just the speakers while listening to a soundtrack with lots of lower frequencies while leaving just the subwoofer turned on.
I'm sure you'll fall in love with this pretty smooth and clean bass.

If you keep in mind that this combinated speaker system has also a very low power consumption (2 * 25 W for the speakers and around 50 W for the subwoofer - makes 100 W in total for the whole system) - especially compared to many other studio monitor speakers (which often surpass 100 W easily - even without a subwoofer) - it's also one of the best energy-saving high-quality home studio speaker systems you can get in the music stores at the moment.

Another important thing I really like about this speaker system as a whole is the really awesome design.
The black colour, the very stylish tweeters, woofers and control elements, as well as the neon blue LED of the Presonus Eris 3.5 speakers, fit totally with the black design of the Fostex PM-SUBmini 2 subwoofer (which also contains a neon blue LED) - and of course the design of whole system totally fits the rest of my dominantly black PC and studio environment.

So, if you really look for an accurate, faithful and a very energy-saving, pretty stylish speaker system with which you can hear lots of details in the sound and which fits on an ordinary desk - no matter if you want to use it for a down-to-earth home studio, for playing video games or for other multimedia applications - you should give this really amazing studio monitor speaker & subwoofer combo definitely a try.

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With multimedia speakers like those you should be careful of resonant peaks at the lower end of the frequency rages, having a peak at 80-120hz is a typical problem with speakers like that and after a while can drive you insane, so test for that. Also run some tests to determine the mid-high response at the crossover points so you can compensate in your mixes.

I think room treatment as a whole is a bit overrated (even though it's necessary to some degree), what's most important is speaker placement in your immediate listening environment, so as long as you have the equilateral triangle you're halfway there. Buzz words like "flat" and "clear" are trivial because regardless of how flat a speaker is, the room will change the frequency response of what you're actually hearing, having some form of diffusion behind you, and some kind of absorption (like a heavy couch) can help you more than making sure your speakers are flat (which they wont be under the $2k per speaker range anyway, regardless of what the manufacturer tells you). Flat speakers need a precisely treated/designed room, otherwise you're defeating the purpose, that's why buying expensive speakers at home is not recommended.

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Thanks for the hint.

According to my ears the Presonus Eris 3.5 sound pretty flat, very clear and much less bassy than most of the other studio monitors I've checked out in the store and on Youtube-Videos.
As I wrote about the sound they 're kinda close to the Yamaha HS series (or comparable with my Sony MDR-7506 headphones).

The missing deep bass (and I think this is a good fact in this case) comes on a separate way from the just slightly turned up Fostex PM-SUBmini 2 subwoofer (another example of excellent Japanese technology) - so there 's much more place for clear mids at the monitors.

I don't know how you would measure the frequency response of the studio reference monitors exactly by yourself (maybe by recording a mostly linear flat noise with a mostly linear studio microphone like Rode NT1 (not the NT1-A which has some elevations in higher and low-end frequencies) , play it with a frequency analyzer tool of your DAW and compare it to the orginal source?).

But I've found a source with the possible frequency response of the Presonus Eris 3.5 (have to enlarge the pic by right mouse click & examining the graphic element to see the whole scale until over 10k Hz)
>>> https://fr.audiofanzine.com/enceinte-active/presonus/eris-e3-5/medias/photos/#id:2090536

If you compare them to the frequency response of other famous studio monitors they seem to come off pretty well - even more in relation to their smaller size.
Just have a look at the picture with the title "Frequency response (before calibration)".
>>> https://sonarworks.com/blog/studio-monitor-test-and-calibration-5-speakers-in-a-bedroom-studio/


So, to me the Presonus Eris 3.5 look kinda well-balanced if you take the frequency response graphics - what's your opinion?

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It doesn't matter what the graph of the speaker says because your room colors it beyond recognition. Also, I really doubt you can just hear what a flat response truly sounds like, especially if you're only testing it by listening to music where resonant peaks and standing waves may not even be present depending on the song you're playing. You measure this stuff, in real life, by using a sound pressure meter as you sweep up the range to detect deviations.

The Sonarworks product will tell you the total response of your room + speakers at your listening position, and I guarantee you, especially because you remarked that your room is untreated, that your system is most certainly way off.

Here was my system pre-calibration, in a completely untreated room:

image.png.15815b49a80c71f22c8bc9716ba1f11a.png

Those peaks are 9 dB. Would make mixing snares basically impossible, as when swapping tones I get a completely different thump to them depending how they're tuned.

After calibration, the response has been flattened and the extra reflections from my walls were silenced so I could also perceive reverb mixing much better.

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