Best monitors for Electronic Music - Mackie HR824 Mk2 vs Dynaudio BM6A's vs Adam AX7
noobist
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#1
10th May 2010
Old 10th May 2010
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Best monitors for Electronic Music - Mackie HR824 Mk2 vs Dynaudio BM6A's vs Adam AX7

Hi there! This is my first post, I've gone through endless threads looking for answers, but haven't found answers to all my questions

My budget is around $3000 AU ($2,600 US) for monitors and an audio interface. I mainly produce electronic music (DnB, Psytrance & Chillout) and don't do much recording yet. I will be working on a Mac using Ableton Live 8, Reason 4, and either Pro Tools or Logic (don't mind which I use). The room which I will be working in is 3.7m x 4m (12ft x 13ft).

So far I have nailed it down to three choices...

Monitors:
- Mackie HR824 MK2
- Adam A7X
- Dynaudio BM6A MK2

I have listened to the Adam A7's (not A7X) and the Mackie HR824 MK2's. The Adams had the most revealing and clean highs of anything in this price range (to my ears) and the Mackies had a good all around sound (maybe the bass was a little too loud). Working with Electronic Music I'd prefer something with a more pronounced low end than the original Adam A7's (although I listened to these in a large room).

Many stores here in Adelaide seem to be pushing KRK VXT 8's, but I am not a fan of these (the bass appeared too pronounced in some frequencies and the highs slightly muted). Unfortunately I cannot sample all monitors in the same location or take them home to test here in Adelaide. Also it can be hard to find many of the common monitors found in the US.


As for the Audio Interfaces:

- Roland Cakewalk UA 25-EX
- Apogee Duet

The Cakewalk I can get for $350 AU, and the Apogee $500-$700 AU. I'd prefer audio quality over more inputs/outputs.

Any help/recommendations would be greatly appreciated
Zhe
#2
11th May 2010
Old 11th May 2010
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Zhe
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Very interested in this thread as i'm in an extremely similar position.

Also my first post in Australia and making Electronic music (albeit Techno-ish stuff on Windows XP with Reason 4 if that actually makes a difference.) and i'm also looking for decent studio monitors (although I really don't know much about monitors).

I already asked on one other forum and they've suggested that I look into KRK Rokit RP-8's, I don't know if that helps. I'm looking at the monitors in the OP though since availability in Australia is kind of an issue.
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11th May 2010
Old 11th May 2010
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The only monitor on your list I've found translated near-perfectly to the outer limits, was the A7. If you require that bottom octave, I'd consider getting a sub or 2 (with all the hassles than can entail). I would say though, that the low end is more than workable, and in a small to mid sized room, the A7s, Focal Solo 6s, TB2SA's or B&W 805's would be the only loudspeakers I'd even think of - with a well known brand attached that is. Maybe just me though
#4
11th May 2010
Old 11th May 2010
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hey,

so, i own Dynaudios BM6A MKII's and i could not be more happy with them. I tested them against Adam A7X, the VXT6 from KRK and the Mackie HR824mk2. In my honest opinion, the Adam's were a little too harsh on the highs, the Mackies just sounded dull and the VXT's were pretty good, still, the sound coming of them seemed a little too 'hi-fi'. I was between Adam and Dynaudio in the end, but im happy i chose the Dyns. They just translate cristal clear, have a nice low end, wich i think is more than enough for electronic music, since, that's what i do too - Techno, Prog House and Electro. I think a Sub acctually brings you more harm than good in a untreated room, the lows just go all over the place.

That said, as for the interface, i would definitely point you in the Duet's direction, i have one, and for that price, this little unit sounds amazing.

Anyway, like i said, that's just my opinion, i hope i helped.

All the best,

Alex

PS: In case you are wondering how mix mixes and productons sound, you can check it out on stein - Tracks - SoundCloud
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11th May 2010
Old 11th May 2010
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Dynaudio here.
#6
11th May 2010
Old 11th May 2010
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A7's all the way. I have a pair and love them. They show front to back information (which is super critical for electronic music and layering tons of synths, etc) in the mix better than any speaker in its price range. My mixes just bump more coming off the A7's...
#7
12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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Dyns all the way!

KRKs, Yamaha, M-Audio, Alesis M1 etc pretty much similar quality sold by mass market music shops in every town - just a different sound at a project studio budget - depends on what you want to / like to hear in a mix + or minus a hundred or 2 hundred bucks.

I'm about to jump onboard and upgrade my monitors after years of the original well built Rocket 5 which I bought at a budget and without much of knowledge in the area of monitoring. They sounded good at the time for the price. Now I'm after a larger sound and much better fidelity.

Have recently bought an i7 and relearning Protools 8, tiny budget MBox 2 mini and M8 Soundcraft mixer - Rocket 5s soon to be replaced or as a second pair.

Reading forums gave me a general idea of pros/cons of all monitors - I was interested in the new Fostex PM series after reading, and after listening for a few minutes their harshness hurt my ears!
So instead of spending too much time reading dribble in forums, I just drove to Bris from the Sunny Coast and checked out a number of good stores which at least had something that resembled a listening area - Musiclab in Brisvegas have the BEST room (without bias) I've had the pleasure of critical listening - but they only stock a fairly limited range with Dynaudio being the best they have (May 11 / 2010). They also stock Genelecs sometimes.

I was originally going to spend between $1 - $2k for a 'good' pair, but after A/B-ing the new Rockets, VXT's, HS50 & 80, and the HR824 Mk2 etc at several different stores (not all in one) with my fav music, I was initially impressed with how good the HR824s were among this bunch. Much more open and transparent, balanced with an apparently honest full range and at $2600/pr - up there in price. Almost as if the speakers ''disappear'' and all you hear is dimensional sound and not the speakers themselves.

AHH, but my listening journey gets better! Musiclab had the Dyns which I had never heard before - pricey and seemingly out of reach in the high-end market.
For me they created an incredible 3D image, transparency, crisp highs, and smoothness and honesty at every audible frequency - now these BLEW me away! I was no longer listening to the 'speakers' - they disappeared! Just the sound was present.
After about 1/2hr of comparing the Dyns, the shortfalls of the Yamis, M-Audio, Rockets etc were quickly revealed. Admittedly I was listening to the huge & natural sounding BM12s' (8" @ $3400) but they were an excellent indication of the smaller range BM6a which I'm now keen on ($2500). Yes, the Mackies are good, but for me the Dyns are in the next league and also at the same price!!
The Mackies have a great bottom end, but possibly exaggerated next to the truth of the Dyns.

Trust your ears, don't bother too much about specs and hype, have a good listen to different program material, and also listen to monitors which are slightly better than your budget - your ears will thank you after hours of listening each day in the studio.
Don't want cheap crap that causes listening fatigue and needs to be loud to hopefully hear everything - tinnitus is no fun!!

I'm now leaning towards the BM6a's (at $500 above my max), and they'll last for years and sound awesome. Apparently the Gens are a bit harsh at the top end and are more pricey.
Didn't have a chance to listen to the A7s or Event Opals, but music mag and online reviews/comparisons do help a bit.

Hope you find a good pair.

Last edited by oldmate; 12th May 2010 at 06:37 AM.. Reason: missing info
#8
12th May 2010
Old 12th May 2010
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They are all good, but for what you want I would probably go with the Mackies. I own Dynaudios and I think they are more revealing than the mackies, but I think the low end is extremely important and you won't hear it as well with the adams or dyns. That said, if you get a sub, it's a different story.
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12th May 2010
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It all boils down to personal preference really, but my vote is for the A7Xs.

I've had the Adams for a month and I returned them so I could get the A7Xs which come out next month.

The new model has a wider frequency response along with more power and tighter lows.
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12th May 2010
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Get a sub for low end, don't depend on monitors for low end.
adl
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12th May 2010
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A7 with the Adam Sub10 here for doing Techouse. Very nice combination. thumbsup
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12th May 2010
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I'd add Focals to that list, they work great with electronic music and aren't fatiguing (which is important, since you'll probably monitor electronic music pretty loud) to the ears like the Adams can be.

Got a pair of CMS65's myself, they are more or less perfect for my house and techno productions. No need for a sub either, they can produce tons of bass when needed.
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27th May 2011
Old 27th May 2011
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The winner

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27th May 2011
Old 27th May 2011
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And you have the option to add the kh810 sub...
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27th May 2011
Old 27th May 2011
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27th May 2012
Old 27th May 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noobist View Post
Monitors:
- Mackie HR824 MK2
- Adam A7X
- Dynaudio BM6A MK2
Wakening an old thread maybe; just had to toss in a few cent here. I just bought the ADAM A7x. They beat my Genelec 8030 by a mile in an A/B comparasion. Especially in the bass register where I have allways seen that my Genelecs didn't make me able to mix good bass. It was just too hard to use the Genelecs well in my semi-treated studio.
I must say I haven\t A/B/c'ed the monitors you listed and I don't know too much about the Mackie's and the DynA. Just wanted to tell you how pleased I am with the A7x. Also planning to get the dedicated ADAM sub on tuesday. And I'm using the Presonus Monitor station for switchbox.
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