Yamaha NS10m Studio monitors and Amplifier thread
akila
Thread Starter
#1
8th September 2009
Old 8th September 2009
  #1
Gear interested
 
akila's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Yamaha NS10m Studio monitors and Amplifier thread

Dear Gearslutz, users and visitors.
In this thread you will find usefull information, tips and tricks, opinions from experienced users and info for new users of the NS10m.

Let this be the one and only Yamaha NS10m thread you will ever need to visit to get your answers answered. Let this also be (hopefully) the last NS10m thread ON THE INTERNET.


INTRODUCTION
-------------------------------------------------------------
What this thread is NOT
NS10m VS Mackie/Adam/Krk/Genelec or any other speaker. Please dont.

A Debate about the sound quality, reliability of these speakers as a monitor or studio standard. They sound shit to you, sound gold to others, nobody cares.

"My setup is better than yours because.." Good for you.
"Let your ears be the judge", Obvious statement. Heard 1000 times before, didn't help anyone.
Also, If you dont like the Yamaha's, then you should not waste your time writing about it here.


What this thread IS
A place to share experience, tips and tricks and gear information to oldschool or new users of the NS10m. Help Those kids out, you might learn something yourself along the way.

For example;
- What New amps are recommended for the low/mid-end user or the one with a budget?
- What amps for the high-end user? Oldschool amps only available second hand?
- What not to do with these monitors, what amps not to use, how to not blow up tweeters as soon as you crank the volume up etc..
- Maintenance, changing driver or cleaning the wood.

Bare in mind;
In almost all NS10m + amp threads the Really expensive, old and only available second hand amps are recomended.
Some users/visitors dont have GOLDS and simply want something available in shops that just gives enough juice to power these without breaking them. Thats why you see new threads popping up all the time.


THE MONITORS
-------------------------------------------------------------
Consider the Yamaha NS10m Studio
Whats not to LOVE about these monitors? They sound like cardboard, translate well if you learn them.. wait, thats just like any other monitor (except the cardboard).

In short, These Yamaha's were designed as a bookshelf Hi-Fi speaker but failed to impress as many consumers thought they sounded too flat and not "good enough".

So instead of simply dismissing the NS10 as a failure, Yamaha shipped many units FOR FREE to studios and hoped for the best.
Because they were free, they became a popular second reference monitor.

If you are looking for a flat sounding pair of monitors, these monitors are not for you.
Here are some frequency response curves for the Yamaha NS10m. Click to enlarge.



They became popular due to many producers talking about them, product placement and the white driver, paper tissue issue, mentions and because they were shipped out for free to many studios.
At the time, freelance producers also traveled around to different studio's carrying their favorite equipment.

These monitors were discontinued in 2001, Yamaha claims they cant obtain the materials needed to produce the woofer cone. The wood pulp used in the woofer is no longer available (strangely enough you can still buy new cones today). Others say the way they were produced were illegal.
Either way, Yamaha tried other materials but couldn't get a faithful NS10 sound so they felt it was time to let this workhourse go.

You can still buy parts for your speaker if they are old or broken.



Yamaha NS10 Versions
(work in progress)

If you are looking for More in depth information, Go here:
The Yamaha NS10 Story
Bob Hodas Acoustic Analysis : Examining the Yamaha NS-10M "Tissue Paper Phenomenon"

!!!!! HELP TO FILL THIS LIST UP !!!!!


ISSUES
-------------------------------------------------------------
There are a few well known issues with these monitors you might want to know before powering them up.

1.
Using the NS10m with a lesser powered amp will result in more distortion. The speaker will try to accurately reproduce the distortion and this might result in overheating and breakage. This will also damage and age the NS10m much faster.

!!!!! HELP TO FILL THIS LIST UP !!!!!


THE AMPS
-------------------------------------------------------------
There is no perfect amp for the NS10m studio monitor.
But there are some really good ones that are recommended by many.
Quote:
They'll work fine with just about anything. Most people I know (who make their living from recording/mixing) use either high quality HiFi-amplifiers like NAD or a rather cheap, Samson etc, monitor amp.
Any moderate hifi amp would do, but amps that maintain good control at the bass end are the best bet. People often use Quads (303s or 405s etc), the bigger NADs, or almost any of the rack mount studio amps like Samsons, HH, Yamaha and so on.
One thing to note is that you should aim at an amp that do +150w per channel or the distortion at low levels will make the NS10 sad.

Bryston
These are the most mentioned when it comes to finding a great sounding amp for the NS10m. Models range from the 4B/3B/2B ST and SST.
If money isn't a problem and you live to revive the older amp models these are your choice.

Hafler
9505/P-3000/P-1500 Are widely recognized as being a great match for the NS10m. Many haflers have found their way into big professional studios. Some say the newer haflers aren't as good as the new models though.

Yamaha
Yamaha A100a, some say it was made for the NS10's. Big mid-range, ok sounding highs but the low-end is lacking. Doesn't really matter so much though as the NS10m doesn't have a "good" low-end response.
Not so much overall detail but a good match. These are hard to find these days though.

Yamaha P2075.

Crown

Quote:
The GFA 5X5 series designed by Nelson Pass. Absolutely awsome with NS-10s. My 545 sounds phenominal on them. clean, quiet, powerful and totally revealing throughout the entire midrange...
Quote:
I know there's a lot of talk about driving NS-10s with strong amps. i've always found the Bryston 2B or Quad 303 to be strong enough.
might depend on the room and how much energy is absorbed by traps and treatment.
!!!!! HELP TO FILL THIS LIST UP !!!!!


NEW AMPS
----------------------------------------------------------
If you are looking for amps that are available in a store near you and dont want to pay a fortune for them, these are the recommended new amps available.
They will give enough power to drive the NS10m without distortion blowing your NS10m's.

!!!!! HELP TO FILL THIS LIST UP !!!!!


LOW-END AMPS
----------------------------------------------------------
If you are looking for an amp that can power the NS10m but dont really care enough to get the best sound you can get from them, these amps are for you.
Maybe you dont have the time/energy or money to spend and just want to use you NS10m without breaking them or have distortion break them.

Samson
Servo-170. The NS10M is mentioned in the manual for this amp. (WARNING: Marketing ploy?)


!!!!! HELP TO FILL THIS LIST UP !!!!!


INFO / TIPS AND TRICKS
----------------------------------------------------------
A list of tips and tricks of what to do/not to do with your Yamaha's.
For example;
- What amp will fry your NS10m?
- What is underpowered and not good?
- Overpowered not good?
- Maintenance tips?
- What tissue paper to use (older models)?????

Quote:
I have found that anything less than 150w/channel will end up causing speaker failure due to distortion created by the amp which causes heat to be generated in the voice coils of the drivers, which causes the insulation around the wire of the voice coil to break down overtime causing driver failure.
Quote:
If you're concerned with "overpowering" the speakers with a larger amp then go in after the crossover and install a .75amp [fast blow] fuse on the hot lead to the tweeter and a 1.5amp [fast blow] fuse on the hot lead to the woofer. This will protect the speakers against anything except the fastest high level spikes [which would take out a driver with damn near any amp].
Quote:
When mixing with the NS10s, there's a way to make sure your mix will sound good on other systems. Mix at a low level.
Use a level that's similar to background music at a dinner party. When you monitor with the NS10s in this manner, and you hear a good balance of frequencies, you've got it. Monitoring at loud levels is where the NS10s trick us into lowering the mids and raising the lows. This results in mixes that may sound great on the NS10s, but muffled or bass heavy (dull) on other systems.
Quote:
In a test using a 60 watt per channel Yamaha amp, the high end was brittle and the low end not impressive. However, when using a 250 watt per channel Acurus amp, the highs were pleasing, and the low end, while not over bearing, sounded tight and punchy.
Quote:
Under powered distortion is what will kill your speakers the fastest. I would run those speakers with 90 to 100 watts rms into them but you turn down the gains on the amps. This will give you a cleaner signal than cranking the gains on a lower powered amp.
Quote:
With NS-10M's I generally recommend that users go in after the cross over and add a 3/4amp fuse before the tweeter and a 1.5 amp fuse for the woofer [both "fast blow"] and that will stop about 90% of the "oooops" problems. The other 10% will get you no matter what as the fuse isn't fast enough to catch the "overage".
Quote:
when looking at amplifier power always look at the ratings from 20-20KHZ as that is the entire frequency range that you want to reproduce. So your real wattage is 260 and 450 respectfully. The Yamaha lit says 90DB with 1 watt. So with 260 you are at approx 114DB, and with 450 you are at 117DB. You really do not sound like you want to play that loud, 100DB is very loud. The 260 watt amp is fine. I really do not think you would even want to play them speakers that loud. 90DB is a good monitoring level, so actually you are coasting at just a couple of watts most of the time, but during a transit you may need 10 times more power, and you would be covered.

!!!!! HELP TO FILL THIS LIST UP !!!!!



THE SPOTLIGHT
----------------------------------------------------------





----------------------------------------------------------
----------------------------------------------------------
There will be more content added as this thread grows and the lists expand.

Feel free to say what monitors you have as seconds or mains to the Yamaha NS10m, What is Your setup?
But dont let it become "mine is better" opinion war. Keep it clean and hopefully this will be a good source on the internet to come to when you are looking for NS10 info.

Peace.
akila
Thread Starter
#2
10th September 2009
Old 10th September 2009
  #2
Gear interested
 
akila's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Updated first post with more info and pictures.

EDIT; This post #2 might contain more in-depth information about amps and NS10 tech later..

NS10m
Program 60 watts, 120 watt max into 8 ohms.
#3
10th September 2009
Old 10th September 2009
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Red 7's Avatar
 

Nice thread. Thank you!
#4
10th September 2009
Old 10th September 2009
  #4
the whole world is NS10 crazy
#5
10th September 2009
Old 10th September 2009
  #5
Gear nut
 

A couple things to perhaps add: there's a difference between the original NS-10 and the NS-10M. Some say the NS-10 needed tissue placed over the tweeters whereas the NS-10m don't
The NS-10m are generally placed sideways. That's how I see it anyways.
And I heard that the NS-10's were discontinued because the paper used in the woofers were no longer legal to produce due to lack of resources or something.

Anyhow, I power my NS-10m monitors with a second hand Yamaha P-2200 amp. The price range is pretty low ($100-300) and can be found on ebay most of the time. It is bulky and heavy. I can't comment on sound quality because I've never heard the NS-10s with any other amp.
#6
10th September 2009
Old 10th September 2009
  #6
Gear nut
 
TheEqualizer's Avatar
 

Samson Servo-170 for low-end (price) amplifiers. The NS10M is mentioned in the manual.
#7
10th September 2009
Old 10th September 2009
  #7
Gear addict
 

#8
30th September 2009
Old 30th September 2009
  #8
Gear Head
 

great thread . i just got a pair of these guys yesterday so this thread is EXACTLY what i needed.
anyway, i was wondering if anyone used the JBL UREI 6260 amplifier with the NS 10s and where does this one stand compared to the more popular amps that were mentioned here earlier.

thanks.
#9
30th September 2009
Old 30th September 2009
  #9
Lives for gear
 
MidasHatesGold's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ovibis View Post
great thread . i just got a pair of these guys yesterday so this thread is EXACTLY what i needed.
anyway, i was wondering if anyone used the JBL UREI 6260 amplifier with the NS 10s and where does this one stand compared to the more popular amps that were mentioned here earlier.

thanks.
I used an Urei 6300 Power Amplifier.... great results @ half way open

regards
#10
30th September 2009
Old 30th September 2009
  #10
Gear Head
 

cool. thats good to know. if you had to choose between Hfler P1000 (not 1500) and JBL UREI 6260 , which one would you use?
#11
30th September 2009
Old 30th September 2009
  #11
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fossaree's Avatar
 

#12
30th September 2009
Old 30th September 2009
  #12
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MidasHatesGold's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ovibis View Post
cool. thats good to know. if you had to choose between Hfler P1000 (not 1500) and JBL UREI 6260 , which one would you use?
can´t say that...haven´t tested the hafler or even compared them. I use the Urei to drive the NS10 and a pair of JBL 4435.... I´m sure the hafler is fine....make sure you have enough headroom to avoid any distortion....

#13
30th September 2009
Old 30th September 2009
  #13
Gear Head
 

i use the urei 6260 at about half, and these are 2x150 , but Im wondering if the Hafler P1000 (which i think are only 2x100) would be better (less headroom , but maybe cleaner?). im just asking.
#14
30th September 2009
Old 30th September 2009
  #14
Gear interested
 

I just bought some for 350Euros = 511 US$ and I love every bit of them, so I'll be reading this thread and learning a lot.

thanks.

P.S: By the way I use this Amp: ADCOM GFA 535
#15
1st October 2009
Old 1st October 2009
  #15
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MidasHatesGold's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ovibis View Post
i use the urei 6260 at about half, and these are 2x150 , but Im wondering if the Hafler P1000 (which i think are only 2x100) would be better (less headroom , but maybe cleaner?). im just asking.
Try to rent the hafler...and do an A/B test...If you have the urei keep it...IMO
#16
2nd October 2009
Old 2nd October 2009
  #16
Gear interested
 

I've seen a pair of yamaha NS10Ms for sale locally for a good price and I'm seriously considering getting them. Seems like they are VERY easy to damage, are there any particular faults I should look out for other than the obvious like one of the drivers not working? Obviously, the NS10/Ms do not have a flat frequency response and have their own sound to them, but I have never worked on the NS10s so I don't know how they should sound like. Basically, any tips for when I go to try them out?

Thanks
#17
2nd October 2009
Old 2nd October 2009
  #17
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fossaree's Avatar
 

I bought a pair the other day , and cosmetically speaking it wasn't that great .
But i tested it on the store and woofer&tweeter were ok , I simply bought it .

It's also a good idea , to check if there's a serial number .
#18
2nd October 2009
Old 2nd October 2009
  #18
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Crash's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TNagler View Post
I've seen a pair of yamaha NS10Ms for sale locally for a good price and I'm seriously considering getting them. Seems like they are VERY easy to damage, are there any particular faults I should look out for other than the obvious like one of the drivers not working? Obviously, the NS10/Ms do not have a flat frequency response and have their own sound to them, but I have never worked on the NS10s so I don't know how they should sound like. Basically, any tips for when I go to try them out?

Thanks
I have never gotten the vibe that they are easily damaged. I have had mine loud enough to hurt, which isn't hard considering the frequency response. If they sound sort of harsh, then they are working perfectly.
#19
2nd October 2009
Old 2nd October 2009
  #19
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fossaree's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crash View Post
If they sound sort of harsh, then they are working perfectly.
LOL ... but true !
#20
9th November 2009
Old 9th November 2009
  #20
Gear addict
 
andrewenson's Avatar
 

zero chan
hahahahahahahaha

i have a pair of ns10's sitting in my closet and i dont know what to do with them since i have a working pair but i dont want to sell my crapped ones :/
#21
20th October 2010
Old 20th October 2010
  #21
Lives for gear
NEW thought

I am wondering how will NS10M sound if we apply Bi-amp power to it (since most modern active speakers now days are bi-amplified).

So that means one to have two amplifiers, one take care the LF and one take care the HF. The LF one will need bigger watts around 200 watts at least and the HF one will apply with 100 or less watts.

Have anyone tried bi-amp with ns10m yet?
#22
20th October 2010
Old 20th October 2010
  #22
Gear addict
 
capnreverb's Avatar
 

I just got mine a month ago and all ready I see an improvement in my mixes. There is a learning curve with them, especially getting the bass to translate across other systems. I have been real pleased overall though. I use an older Samson Servo 260. I'm looking for an upgrade to a Bryston or Haffler when funds allow, but, for now it works fine and has more juice than my crown d-75 which is a better amp but not as potent.
I think once I get past the learning curve with the bass, these will be an awesome tool for mixing my music down. Someday when I have a better treated mixing room and if I have the funds I want to step up into the Barefoot realm, but, for now they are doing a hell of a job.
Also, a lot of people complain about them sounding bad. I don't find that at all. While they are not my B&W stereo speakers in terms of fidelity, they are not a bad listen, with my only complaint being that the high end is as shrill as everyone says.

Great thread, thanks for starting it!!!!!
#23
20th October 2010
Old 20th October 2010
  #23
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Crash's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jcc449 View Post
I am wondering how will NS10M sound if we apply Bi-amp power to it (since most modern active speakers now days are bi-amplified).

So that means one to have two amplifiers, one take care the LF and one take care the HF. The LF one will need bigger watts around 200 watts at least and the HF one will apply with 100 or less watts.

Have anyone tried bi-amp with ns10m yet?
You would have to get inside the speaker and rid of the internal crossover before you could pull this off.
#24
21st October 2010
Old 21st October 2010
  #24
Lives for gear
Yamaha NS10m Studio monitors and Amplifier thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crash

You would have to get inside the speaker and rid of the internal crossover before you pull this off.
Yes ,have u try it?
#25
21st October 2010
Old 21st October 2010
  #25
Lives for gear
 
s.d.finley's Avatar
 

Yamaha NS10m Studio monitors and Amplifier thread

Great Thread! I like the note at the start.

I have been using Ns10s for about 14 years. Matching serial numbers even. Same pair never blown. I use a Halfer DH500 power amp. Sounds great. I also use a yamaha subwoofer to make up for the lack of low end. I can dial in the frequency and amount of low endfor the sub. Clients always surprised how much bass pops out. . I always fess up tho!!


Posted via the Gearslutz iPhone app
#26
21st October 2010
Old 21st October 2010
  #26
Gear addict
 
ironbelly's Avatar
 

jim williams recommended the Adcom gfa-545 amp to me and i must say, it sounds quite great with the ns10s. lotta bang for the buck.



*
#27
21st October 2010
Old 21st October 2010
  #27
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Crash's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jcc449 View Post
Yes ,have u try it?
Nope, I like them in their original horrifying state of being. I use the NS-10m's with Auratones and a set of Mackie Hr-824's to cover my monitor bases.
#28
22nd October 2010
Old 22nd October 2010
  #28
Lives for gear
Yamaha NS10m Studio monitors and Amplifier thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crash

Nope, I like them in their original horrifying state of being. I use the NS-10m's with Auratones and a set of Mackie Hr-824's to cover my monitor bases.
It would be awesome to hear how ns10m reacts in low end with biamp

Signal --- ns10m crossover---Treble amp -- ns10 soft dome tweeter
Signal --- ns10m crossover ---bass amp -- ns10 woofer
#29
1st November 2010
Old 1st November 2010
  #29
Lives for gear
Yamaha P3500?

HEY GUYS, how about Yamaha P3500 for NS10M?

is it ok?
#30
2nd November 2010
Old 2nd November 2010
  #30
Lives for gear
Yamaha NS10m Studio monitors and Amplifier thread

Or p2500
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