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Avantone Mixcubes as 2nd pair?
Old 9th November 2009
  #1
Avantone Mixcubes as 2nd pair?

Hi everyone,

at the moment my monitoring consists of Tannoy PBM 6.5, Canton Forum 601 and a Sony hifi amp. I was thinking about getting some passive mixcubes instead of the Tannoy's, because while they sound pleasing I'm having a hard time making any mixing decisions on them.
Lately I did some mixing on small computer speakers and the outcome was much better, thus the idea with the cubes.
So what do you think about it? Would the cubes be a good choice as another pair for electronic music? Or should I maybe get some KRK's instead?
Old 9th November 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 

Got a pair of active Mixcubes. They're great to get the midrange in order.
Old 9th November 2009
  #3
What do you use as your 2nd pair? And to which speakers are you listening to most of the time?
Thanks.
Old 10th November 2009
  #4
i'm using Adam P22A as my main nearfield monitors, listen to them most of the time, esp when eq-ing and choosing sounds. but switch/check on small single cone Fostex 6301 all the time. when i mix and deal with lead vocalvocal/snare/lead guitar levels versus rest of the mix. im almost all the time on the Fostex. nearing finish i also re-check the whole mix switched to mono.


i was about to pickup Avantones, when a friend producer introduced me to Fostex... i pikced em up and couldn't be happier since.


in general, adding a smal pair of single cone monitors as your second pair, is always a good thing, for better translation of your mix to the outside world.
Old 10th November 2009
  #5
Ok, so for choosing sounds and as main monitors these small speakers are not so well suited?
So I'm probably better off, to save a bit for some good 8" monitors and get the mixcubes or the mentioned fostex later?
Old 10th November 2009
  #6
No - they should nor be your mains, but are very good seconds...I have some krk vxt8's and the avantones tell me stuff about the mids that is not obvious at all on the big speakers. However, you still need bass & treble to mix
Old 10th November 2009
  #7
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very happy with them as a pair of 2nds here
Old 10th November 2009
  #8
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steveschizoid's Avatar
If money is a huge problem, I'd trade the Tannoys for some Yammaha HS80m's; they are some of the best you'll find anywhere near that price range - you can pick up a pair used for $400. The mixcubes are great for guitar/vocal balance and figuring out how much bass guitar you'll be able to hear when the playback system doesn't go low enough to reproduce its fundamentals. I used those Tannoys a long time ago, and I seem to recall they don't really go below 75Hz and start to get weak at 90 Hz. The HS80m's are pretty much full range speakers.
Old 10th November 2009
  #9
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as a 2nd pair of monitors for checking mixes on i got a $100 pair of Maudio monitors. work great for that as they are typical consumer grade monitors anyone would have hooked up to their computer for internet type things.

i actually have a pair of the same ones hooked up to my internet/music library/ipod station/banking/miscellaneous old computer and got so used to listening to music on them that i got to know them pretty well.. that's what made me get a 2nd pair for the studio.. i got tired to taking mixes upstairs to check them on the crap speakers.. so now i just press a button and can tell pretty quickly if something is really out of whack. i also use old hi fi speakers that i've had for 15 years in another room... between those and earbuds i feel pretty safe.
Old 10th November 2009
  #10
Yeah, the problem with the tannoys is the weak lowend and also that subtle eq changes are almost not perceivable.
How do the HS80M compare to the Krk rokits or even the HS50M, cause my budget is thighter than a nun's asshole?
Old 10th November 2009
  #11
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i had tannoys a long time ago. never liked them. the low end was horrible.. just not there. it took me a long time to get things right and i found them to cause ear fatigue after a few hours which was a drag.

i got some dynaudio BM6a's and like them a lot. added a sub a while back.. even better.

i think the smaller cheaper monitors are actually better than some of the midrange stuff.

my friend has the little yamaha ones and he likes them a lot.
Old 10th November 2009
  #12
What do you mean with "smaller cheaper monitors" and "midrange stuff"? Can you give some examples?
Old 10th November 2009
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Telemann View Post
What do you mean with "smaller cheaper monitors" and "midrange stuff"? Can you give some examples?
examples? i don't know.. i'm half talking out my ass based on experiences w/a mid range pair of monitors.. by 'midrange' i don't mean frequency.. i mean where they fall in the price/performance 'range'. tannoys are somewhere in the middle. i mixed a lot of songs on the tannoy reveals and i still feel like i never knew them and that they didn't do anything well.

i tracked a bunch of bands using NS-10's and hated them but i knew what to expect and felt i knew what i was hearing.

i just think that you either spend a little more or a little less.. some of the stuff that is advertised as being "the best monitor ever" and costs in between the "a little more" price bracket is not much better than the stuff that costs "a little less". marketing being what it is and all that.

monitors are not one size fits all. loads of people love NS-10's. i could never stand them. but i've heard some amazing mixes come out of them (we all probably have).

i guess.. you could get adam A7's or dynaudio BM5's for the price of some of the other brands' larger monitors but you aren't necessarily getting more for your money.

and there are those monitors that find a niche and are not very spendy. stuff like the yamaha's.. a lot of people love the sound of some of them and you don't have to spend a fortune.

but it all comes down to getting to know your monitors. my friend wrote and mixed about 90% of his album on some old ass radio shack speakers and one of them had a busted tweeter! the record is great in every way.

click here for a listen



Old 10th November 2009
  #14
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steveschizoid's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Telemann View Post
Yeah, the problem with the tannoys is the weak lowend and also that subtle eq changes are almost not perceivable.
How do the HS80M compare to the Krk rokits or even the HS50M, cause my budget is thighter than a nun's asshole?
I'm sorry to have to tell you that the HS50m's would not be an improvement over the Tannoys. They might even be worse. I sold my HS80m's to make way for Adam S3A's, but I truly felt that they were the best I could find in the less than $2000 range, that's why I kept them until I could afford much, much more expensive monitors. I never used the HS50m's, but I did hear them when I was listening to everything else at Sam Ash and Guitar Center. They sucked. I am not sure why I left with that impression - you'd think the HS50's would be similar to the HS80's, but with less low end, but to me they sounded small and harsh. The HS80's will sound harsh if your mix is harsh, but they sound great with a great mix. When I really got serious about auditioning monitors, I quickly found that all of them in that price range were compromised in some area. I had high hopes for the Event asp8's, but they had this huge hole cut out of the upper midrange - I just couldn't believe people would actually use them. The HS80m's struck me as the least compromised. Maybe a bit hyped in the low end, but nothing like the Events or KRK's or BM5a's. The HS80's don't beat on your eardrums with the low end, but they do go down to 40 Hz, and I did finally stop mixing kick drums too loud when I started using them. I swear you can get a great deal for a used pair.
Old 10th November 2009
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveschizoid View Post
I'm sorry to have to tell you that the HS50m's would not be an improvement over the Tannoys. They might even be worse. I sold my HS80m's to make way for Adam S3A's, but I truly felt that they were the best I could find in the less than $2000 range, that's why I kept them until I could afford much, much more expensive monitors. I never used the HS50m's, but I did hear them when I was listening to everything else at Sam Ash and Guitar Center. They sucked. I am not sure why I left with that impression - you'd think the HS50's would be similar to the HS80's, but with less low end, but to me they sounded small and harsh. The HS80's will sound harsh if your mix is harsh, but they sound great with a great mix. When I really got serious about auditioning monitors, I quickly found that all of them in that price range were compromised in some area. I had high hopes for the Event asp8's, but they had this huge hole cut out of the upper midrange - I just couldn't believe people would actually use them. The HS80m's struck me as the least compromised. Maybe a bit hyped in the low end, but nothing like the Events or KRK's or BM5a's. The HS80's don't beat on your eardrums with the low end, but they do go down to 40 Hz, and I did finally stop mixing kick drums too loud when I started using them. I swear you can get a great deal for a used pair.

Now I'm curious - have you ever heard the A7? What are your thoughts on these?
Old 10th November 2009
  #16
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any speaker is a nice "second opinion" monitor
Old 10th November 2009
  #17
Old 10th November 2009
  #18
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steveschizoid's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by living sounds View Post
Now I'm curious - have you ever heard the A7? What are your thoughts on these?
I have not heard them. S3a's are pretty nice, especially in conjunction with a pair of Mixcubes They aren't MM27's though!
Old 10th November 2009
  #19
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Phil Cibley's Avatar
 

I'm using 6.5s and a pair of original Auratones. Works great for me.
Old 10th November 2009
  #20
Which ones do you find yourself listening to most of the time, not just for mixing, but also for producing and playing?
Old 10th November 2009
  #21
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The Mixcubes/Aurotones are not for listening or producing. They have a very limited bandwith and a limited applicationg - leveling and midrange mixing.
Old 10th November 2009
  #22
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Phil Cibley's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Telemann View Post
Which ones do you find yourself listening to most of the time, not just for mixing, but also for producing and playing?
Ratio is about 80/20 in favor of the Tannoys. The major uses for the Auras are
voice over editing, and seeing how the midrange balance is in a mix. I could never
use the Auras for enjoyment listening as they are just too bandwidth limited and
compressed sounding.
Old 10th November 2009
  #23
Ok, thanks all, that was very helpful.
As it appears, the mixcubes are not what I'm looking for at the moment.
Gonna check out the HS80M and KRKs.
Btw can anyone recommend cheap passive full bandwidth monitors?
Old 19th November 2009
  #24
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beingmf's Avatar
 

what i don't get:
why do people judge monitors like Auratones or NS-10 and the like as a) "second pair" or "what it sounds like when listened through a crappy stereo"? this is a complete MISUNDERSTANDING!

i once used the analogy here, and i will do it again : do you look at a painting always from 10cm away?
no. first you will watch it in its entirety (NS-10 = in the exhibition at 5m distance / Auratones = small print in a magazine ), and then you'll look at the details (="full bandwidth"). even the artist will step back during the painting process constantly...

not an artist's work, but that's what happens:


i have gotten used to switching monitors every 30 minutes or so. this gives me the most objective "view" on my mix. otherwise i tend to get lost in details - maybe it's a character thing?

for "full bandwidth" suggestions: totally dependent on your room and acoustic treatment...
Old 19th November 2009
  #25
Don't mean to be a smartass here, but wouldn't the full bandwidth speakers be the big picture and the auratones the closer look (@ the mids)? (Ok, I am a smartass )
If anyone is interested, I tried some hifi speakers I had lying around instead of the tannoys, and it seems to me, that in my listening position most of the bass gets nulled, because I get almost the same washed out picture with little bass as with the tannoys.
So I think before I look at new monitors, I'm gonna experiment with speaker placement some more.
And yes, my room is already treated with bass panel traps, but the bass response is still very uneven. So that when I'm walking around with a sine playing, there's lots of cancelation and volume jumps going on.
Old 20th November 2009
  #26
I Agree - I think that my KRK vxt 8's give the "big picture" while the Avantones give the "closer look" fine detail on the mids (without the distraction of those alluring highs and lows).

To make your current speakers more accurate you should do you room work first, but you can always look into the KRK Ergo too. This helped me sort out some persistent bass issues (my room is already treated). It is really obvious on well produced material - the lower end sounds ok with it off, but once the Ergo is engaged everything just sound much more focused and "right".
Old 20th November 2009
  #27
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The MPCist's Avatar
 

Avantone's are great for giving a different perspective of the music -- makes you concentrate on the mids and on things that matter. If it sounds good on them, then it's done! heh
Old 20th November 2009
  #28
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beingmf's Avatar
 

IMO Auratones will give you much LESS OVERALL DETAIL than full bandwidth speakers, so I stay with my above mentioned analogy. Yous guys can't tell me that Auratones will reveal more details than e.g. KRK's The terms "fine" and "Auratone" are 2 worlds. FWIW they'll instead blur the picture in favor of the midrange, because here's where the biggest part frequencywise happens. They won't reveal e.g. hiss, subtle dynamic things, sub-80hz-bass, above-8k-highs, "pressure", "excitement" whatever you wanna call it...
- less details = further away, "picture" as a whole, aka "composition"
- more details = closer, brush strokes, but thus distracting from the composition

Absolutely loving the Cubes! And everyone who experiences checking stuff on them for the first time is absolutely stunned.
Old 20th November 2009
  #29
A "closer look" AT THE MIDS - not the overall detail - just the critical mid range details - I stand by it - better mid range detail than my krk's hands down.

They do give a good "overall picture" from a little speakers perspective, but the KRK's give the real overall picture and the high and low freq details....

You know what, I think this may just be partly a semantics thang, but to say that the avantones/auratones are not detailed is just wrong - they are just different details then you hear on the mains.

PS - I think mine sound Truly FINE
Old 26th November 2009
  #30
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ignatius View Post
as a 2nd pair of monitors for checking mixes on i got a $100 pair of Maudio monitors. work great for that as they are typical consumer grade monitors anyone would have hooked up to their computer for internet type things.

i actually have a pair of the same ones hooked up to my internet/music library/ipod station/banking/miscellaneous old computer and got so used to listening to music on them that i got to know them pretty well.. that's what made me get a 2nd pair for the studio.. i got tired to taking mixes upstairs to check them on the crap speakers.. so now i just press a button and can tell pretty quickly if something is really out of whack. i also use old hi fi speakers that i've had for 15 years in another room... between those and earbuds i feel pretty safe.
Hey ignatius, are these the M-Audio speakers you were referring to?:

M-Audio Studiophile AV40 Portable Speakers from zZounds.com
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