starting to think about new monitors

Get that song on tape! Errr... disk?
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marqueemoon
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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by marqueemoon » Fri Sep 09, 2022 5:51 pm

Nico wrote:
Fri Sep 09, 2022 10:44 am
I've been using old Yamaha's (MSP5, I think) for the last 20 years, they still rock and they'll follow me til the end as it's my main reference.
For me, there's not anything better for nearfield monitoring. I tried Focal, Genelec, Tannoy and other speakers. My friend had Yorkville's like yours and thought they were boomy, I agreed.

For me, KRK's are too bass heavy, so are the Tannoys in general, Genelec is way too fatiguing on the highs. Focals are good but a little sloppy for my taste. The Yamaha's (not the new-ish series of different sizes MSP, the old original black ones) are just right. At the cheap price they go for on eBay, i'd really consider getting a pair.
This is great info. I haven’t checked out the previous gen Yamaha stuff. Those MSP5s look very promising, and affordable! Crossover point is 2.5K just like the Yorkvilles. Based on the heat sinks it looks like they’re not Class D. 8)

Yeah, the YSM-1s have extended low end, but it’s not super well controlled.

A major advantage of my mystery speakers is they’ll be small enough to stay alongside something else as an alternate reference down the road, easy to cart to the practice space, etc…

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by marqueemoon » Fri Sep 09, 2022 11:33 pm

Ok, here's the big reveal. Pretty anticlimactic, but yeah. I found a pair of these lil' JVC SP-UX7000 full rangers at a thrift store years ago. These were a part of a little "executive" system in the 90's. According to this video the cones are ceramic. Unlike Auratone/Avantone, etc... which are sealed these are rear ported. The drivers are a whopping 3".

I've used these in my desktop system in my office for years with a little Topping DAC/chip amp. I've been doing more recording and listening to rough mixes at work, and about a week ago I was like "Shit, these sound pretty good and I am used to them.", so I bought a second pair from a nice older German man in Kirkland today for $30.

Image

I pulled up Dreams Tonite by Alvvays and Teardrop by Massive Attack and they don't really do justice to all the sub bass stuff happening in those songs, but it's not completely gone either.

The imaging is absolutely bonkers. I can hear the smallest adjustments in panning and reverb tweaks. To be fair the mid forwardness is probably largely responsible for that.

Anyway, these have been fun so far, and the rest of the band had good things to say about the first batch of mixes I did on them. I definitely plan to keep them around for small speakers/whisper volume duty if I eventually get something bigger/more "proper".

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by øøøøøøø » Sat Sep 10, 2022 2:59 am

If you like those you should really try an Auratone 5C

The biggest advantage to the 5C besides the lack of crossover is the lack of port.

Those two things together mean time domain behavior is about as close to ideal as you can get

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by marqueemoon » Sat Sep 10, 2022 9:03 am

øøøøøøø wrote:
Sat Sep 10, 2022 2:59 am
If you like those you should really try an Auratone 5C

The biggest advantage to the 5C besides the lack of crossover is the lack of port.

Those two things together mean time domain behavior is about as close to ideal as you can get
I haven’t ruled it out. I’ve also looked at the Reftones.

A friend/engineer I’ve worked with has the Avantone Mixcubes. They are pretty lifeless sounding compared to these JVCs, but I think that’s the point.

One thing I’ve noticed with these already is I spend a lot less time soloing things. The JVCs will reveal obvious problems, but you kind of have to trust that the information is there

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by øøøøøøø » Sat Sep 10, 2022 9:23 am

I never related to Avantone's concept of adding a port to their Auratone-inspired speaker (obviously not all of them have this alteration)

To me that defeats the purpose.

I will say that the new Auratone-branded ones are fantastic; at least as good as (probably better than) the originals.

I always wondered how faithful the Avantone ones were to the originals (with respect to driver selection, cabinet volume, etc). I haven't tried all of their many offerings.

For the Auratone brand, we have two sets of the vintage ones and a set of the new (reissue?) ones (the latter are so good that I can't imagine ever needing to hunt for a vintage set or investigate the Avantone copies).

Somewhere there's an AES paper with waterfall plots of dozens of models of popular nearfields.

The Auratone and the Yamaha NS-10m trounce all others in the time domain, and it's not even close.

In the Auratone's case, that's clearly because there's no port and no crossover. Everything's nice and phase-coherent, no lingering port resonances, etc.

The NS-10 is also an acoustic suspension (non-ported) speaker, so that's probably a big part of the success of that design w/r/t time domain concerns.. Much of the rest of it was probably just luck.

Neither are what I'd use for pleasure-listening. But for getting the midrange right, I've found both indispensable at various times (lately, since we built the Northward rooms, I just use the big ATCs and a set of the new Auratones on the meter bridge; seldom the NS-10s anymore).

The idea that NS10s or Auratones are "a real-world reality check" or "to make sure your mix holds up on shitty consumer speakers" is pretty far off-base in my view (frankly belonging to the well-worn genre of "specious internet truthiness").

Those monitors end up in nearly every studio at some point because they're uncommonly good performers in the time domain, and as a result incredibly revealing of what's going on in their (admittedly-limited) bandwidth.

Bandwidth sells speakers; everyone loves subs and air. But critical mix decisions rely on the ability to parse detail, and good time-domain behavior is pretty important to achieving that end, in my view.

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by marqueemoon » Sat Sep 10, 2022 9:48 am

One speaker I’m very curious about is the Renaissance Audio Piccolo. Renaissance is the former Morel folks.

I just record myself and friends for fun. I’m glad I have no professional obligation to listen to NS-10s ;D .

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by BeeTL » Sat Sep 10, 2022 10:23 am

I'm intrigued by the IK Multimedia products.

IK Multimedia
Owner, Lowe Custom Guitars

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by Nico » Sat Sep 10, 2022 5:19 pm

If you can go for floor standing speakers on the (realively) cheap, you can get an old pair of Rega Ela. They look totally awesome, they're super compact and the sound is incredibly natural. They're seen as a hidden gem in the audio world.

II drove them with an old Naim pre/ amp combo that died last month... instead of sending for service, I decided to try an Aliexpress integrated amp, an SMSL A100. Looks wise, it's not unlike my Naim , let's wait to see if it can impress (for the curious 92$ pricetag). Sending the Naim for a recap will probably be 2 or 3 times the price of this new amp :). I might just end up fixing it myself for a couple dollars.

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by marqueemoon » Sat Sep 10, 2022 6:39 pm

Yeah. Running the JVCs on a little Dayton chip amp which I have technically stolen from my wife.

I’m considering getting a pair of TPA3116 mono boards and putting them in pedal enclosures to have some cheap and colorful monoblock power amps.

I have a Creek headphone amp with a stepped attenuator and a line out that can handle preamp duty.

I feel better about disposable amps if they’re not built into a speaker.
:-/

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by Nico » Sun Sep 11, 2022 7:16 pm

I hear so many positive opinions on cheap disposable amps that I've decided to hear it for myself with my 92$ purchase. Coming from a guy that use to sell Linn Audio systems, I have lowered my expectations quite a bit.

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by marqueemoon » Wed Sep 28, 2022 2:26 pm

Nico wrote:
Sun Sep 11, 2022 7:16 pm
I hear so many positive opinions on cheap disposable amps that I've decided to hear it for myself with my 92$ purchase. Coming from a guy that use to sell Linn Audio systems, I have lowered my expectations quite a bit.
I guess Hypex and Purifi are the new hot shit.

I’m pondering getting an Icepower module and one of the Ghentaudio housing kits as that seems more manageable as a project, pretty cheap, and hopefully a little higher quality than some $10 boards.

I’m in no hurry until my wife needs the little Dayton back.

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by Nico » Wed Sep 28, 2022 3:14 pm

well, i received that 92$ SMSL amp and I must say that i'm pretty impressed. Cleaner than my old Naim for sure. Rapid-fire transients ( I hate that kind of talk, btw but the amp sounds really quick, great definition). I think that class D have that quick response feel. There's no point in reviving the old Naim.

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Re: starting to think about new monitors

Post by marqueemoon » Thu Sep 29, 2022 11:33 am

Found my amp.

I’d been looking in the installation av category and found a Stewart AV50 on ebay for $62 shipped.

It’s class A/B and convection cooled (no fan) and has individual attenuators for each channel and a mono switch.

Ugly, but whatever.

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