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ATC scm 110 asl - anyone using them? Studio Monitors
Old 9th September 2016
  #1
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ATC scm 110 asl - anyone using them?

ATC 50's are my main monitor right now and I love the detail they project.
My mixes translate really well, but the bass is somewhat lacking in volume.
Also I'm a big fan of PMC IB2 or EB1i's; loving the bass extension on those, especially on the EB1i's.
So I'm looking to upgrade my 50's and hoping the 110's would be like a 50 with the bass extension of a 3way PMC .. Am I dreaming?
I'd appreciate anyone chiming in that has actually used the 110's.
Old 9th September 2016
  #2
Gear Head
I use them, upgraded from the 25a, a noticeable difference, but not as much as I expected.. Mine are soffit mounted, professionally treated room..
Old 9th September 2016
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruslan Y View Post
... a noticeable difference, but not as much as I expected..
Yeah that is what I was afraid of. Thanks!
Old 9th September 2016
  #4
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Add a sub or two to your 50s and you should be really happy. Love working on ATCs but the lowend is really tite. Adding some lowend extension with subs really is the ticket.
Old 9th September 2016
  #5
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In a room with good low end they can go very low, we have some surprising new clients through Northward Acoustics that are using 110s only and reporting extraordinary low end.

1) Have you looked carefully at your room and explored ways to flatten out the low end behavior?
2) Have you explored positioning and placement in your room and ways to get the 50s/room combo low end to improve ? In my experience, inches can make a difference....
3)Do you have the bass contour dialed up or fully off?
4) One of the benefits of the 50s is that your mixes come out with the proper low end, is that not happening?
5) Have you considered a sub for your 50s?

Brad
Old 9th September 2016
  #6
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I would follow Brad's suggestions.
Old 9th September 2016
  #7
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I have a room with only soffit-mounted ATC SCM50ASL (not passive like the ones you have) and they measure flat to 27.8 Hz almost perfectly. Then they drop off in a perfect -30dB/octave slope down to 17 Hz. Room is 20 ft x 18.5 ft x 11 ft (L x W x H).

I have another room (completely untreated for the moment; waiting on this to arrive) with a pair of freestanding ATC SCM100ASL that is 17.25 ft x 11.5 ft x 8.25 ft (L x W x H). It is coming in close to flat to 25 Hz (just weird, dumb luck that it's so flat in this untreated space.) Speakers are (from the acoustic axis which is the center of the midrange driver) 3 ft from the rear wall and 2 ft 9 in from the side walls.

ATC's specs are highly under-reported once in a room. Have you measured your space? Seeing the picture of your space in the ATC classified, I can see a lot of issues you could have with just geometry and/or listening position. Your wall behind the speakers is angled and it looks like you might be sitting in the center of the room (front to back) and your speakers seem to be positioned at the vertical mid-point for the room too. In essence putting yourself and your speakers in two modes. You might want to adjust both of these things (sit further back or forward, increase the height of your speakers.) The acoustic axis falls (angles down) by 5 degrees so if you sit further back and the speakers go further up, you'll be aligned with the axis. In most general setups (unless you are sitting under 1/2 a meter or very far distant), I'd say you should be eye level with the space between the midrange and the woofer to adjust for the angle of the axis. Or just lift your head 5 degrees up and see if you are staring into the center of the midrange.

As for the 25A and the 110ASL not sounding that different
I'd say that would be true for 50A, 100A, 110A, and 150A but not for a jump from the 25A/45A. There's quite a bit of difference to me. Sure they have the same character due to the midrange but the cabinet size, different amps, and SL woofer make a huge difference to sounding "effortless" at generating sound for the 50A - 150A.
With you coming from passive versions, the 110A will sound much better. The 110A and 100A are very similar on the low-end (and exactly the same on the mid/high though the 110's large baffle does make a slight difference that favours the 100 as a freestander.) Expect low freq extension of 1/2 an octave at most over 50 Actives.

As for PMC, you have to really compare only the IB2S and up. I work regularly with MB2S powered by Parasound amps (previously Bryston, then Classe, and now Parasound) and have been lent by PMC the IB2 for long term use before [I listened all the way up to the IB2 (space constraints about going bigger) before choosing those for use.] Without the midrange found on the IB2 and up models, someone coming from the ATC 50 will find a definite lacking in the most critical range. The SL woofer vs the TL is a real preference though the TL does extend lower with authourity. Some friends prefer the TL but I take the less distorted SL woofer over the low-end extension. There's a point where low end is just feeling your body vibrate over caring about the sound and as you can see by my measured freqs above, we're well past that point.

One thing though, even my full-time PMC-using friends all agree that the TL on the IB2 (and up) needs the speaker to be set further away from the listening position than the SL woofer. Something to keep in mind. But in the end, if your room geometry is screwing with the low end, even the PMC's extension is going to have a lot of dips and the size of the room is going to cap how low you can get with good bass (short of using Modex Plate traps.) Since you have the IB2C, how does it sound in your space? If it's only been in the center postion, put it in your Left or Right space and see how it sounds in mono (vertically positioned.) That should tell you if it'll work better for you.

Last edited by pentagon; 9th September 2016 at 07:13 PM.. Reason: direction clarification; mounting clarification
Old 9th September 2016
  #8
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Electronic music group Noisia use atc scm110.. Im unaware of many artists aside from them that get as much low end on their records lol
Old 9th September 2016
  #9
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Thanks for all the replies so far!
I'll try to address most questions and comments.

My room as pictured in the classifieds is indeed far from perfect. I have not measured this space and I am here only temporarily. The middle of the room is 1 meter (3ft) behind my desk chair. The angled back wall is far from ideal. Bass tends to get trapped in that area. I haven't experimented with placement at all, just measured out the equilateral triangle and setting the speakers up like that. In doing so I respected the 5° rule that ATC suggests. (The stands are 1m high and the speakers are slightly tilted down towards the sweet spot; the back of the speaker is 2cm higher than the front. In combination with the 5° rule the sound arrives at my ear perfectly = 125cm from the floor. With the height of the room being exactly double of that; 250cm. @ pentagon ; you're on to something. Listening distance is 185cm = 6 ft.)

At any rate I'll be moving some stuff around; inches matter indeed, thanks for the reminder Brad. I'm installing a cloud this weekend, so general acoustics and focus should improve a bit too.

I was avoiding subwoofers since in the past I've never been able to fully integrate these into the system. However I'm open to that now, a recent experience with a proper 2.2 setup restored my faith. JL Fathom seems to be the way to go with ATC's? I don't have the budget for two of those though, and I really want to avoid only one sub.

My scm50's are passive, so there's no bass contour setting. They are paired with a Bryston 4BSST2 amp; sounding better than the active ones imo.

Up untill now my pair of PMC IB2S's were sitting right next to the ATC's on the outside. I physically removed them for the classifieds picture; see attachment below for the full setup. (The IB2-C center is another story.) Anyway the PMC's sounded impressive like that, really wide, very inspirational to work with. As a composer this aspect is welcome. At one point, I moved the PMC's to where the ATC's are, perfectly equilateral, and the PMC's sounded much drier and less bass heavy. It was then that I noticed how much bass was present in the area between the speaker and the angled back wall. As was suggested by Pentagon I'm probably sitting in a node or two. However, still a considerable amount of bass was coming from the PMC's in that position, definitely more than the scm50's.

Don't get me wrong, I totally dig the SL woofers and low end. Tight and crisp as a cracker. More accurate than the PMC's one might say. Bottom line is though that contradictory to these facts I needed to switch to the PMC's to really figure out the low end. Not really 'how it sounds', but more like 'if it works' - if you know what I mean. I often write scores with thundering drums, horns, bass synths etc. I can not afford to be unfamiliar with that bottom 1 & 1/2 octave.

Thanks again for your input.
I'll be auditioning 110's shortly.
Attached Thumbnails
ATC scm 110 asl - anyone using them?-2016-08-04-16.32.28-smaller.jpg   ATC scm 110 asl - anyone using them?-2016-08-04-16.31.56-smaller.jpg  

Last edited by Emanuel23; 10th September 2016 at 12:10 AM.. Reason: wrong verb
Old 10th September 2016
  #10
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How wide is your room? If you are 185cm from the speakers and since you mention a perfect equilateral triangle for the ATCs, please tell me that your room isn't 370cm across. It looks possibly true. In which case you've located your speakers in the quarter wavelength node on the width. That could explain the problem of moving the PMC into the ATC position. Narrow or widen the speaker positioning -- it's more important to be out of those nodes than keeping an equilateral triangle. Personally I would narrow the distance between the speakers and toe out the speakers more.
Old 10th September 2016
  #11
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width is 4m42
Old 10th September 2016
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emanuel23 View Post
width is 4m42
Yes, your woofers are in the node if your acoustic axis is 185cm apart speaker to speaker. An easy solution would be to swap your left and right speakers while keeping the midranges is the same location. That'll keep the stereo field the same while moving the woofer out of the node by placing them on the inside.
Old 10th September 2016
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pentagon View Post
Yes, your woofers are in the node if your acoustic axis is 185cm apart speaker to speaker. An easy solution would be to swap your left and right speakers while keeping the midranges is the same location. That'll keep the stereo field the same while moving the woofer out of the node by placing them on the inside.
Good to know mate, thanks! I will be moving stuff around soon.

Any more opinions on the ATC 110?
Old 10th September 2016
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emanuel23 View Post
Good to know mate, thanks! I will be moving stuff around soon.

Any more opinions on the ATC 110?
I know you are not likely to come to AES from Belgium but just in case, we are doing a big event at EAST WEST STUDIO on Friday and Saturday 12-5. We'll have 110s set up in Studio 2, along with 20s, 25s, 45, 50s, 100s, 150s. Maybe you could come hear them yourself and compare them to 50s.

BTW< I note your 50s are older Hi FI versions, non moveable tweeters. This means you can't do horizontal mounting, so you are stuck with vertical set ups. I may be possible to get a different baffle and upgrade in the near future to current models. You might want to take the speaker to ATC for that.

I would say the best sub for the 50s is the ATC sub. SL woofer, specialized sub amp, downfiring.

Brad
Old 11th September 2016
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Emanuel23 View Post
Good to know mate, thanks! I will be moving stuff around soon.

Any more opinions on the ATC 110?
110 user here. Northward acoustics room. Can't say enough good things about either the 110s or my Northward room. In truth though, they work best together if you consider them a system. If you are going to drop that kind of dollar on them, call Thomas and have your room tweaked to get the best out of them. You absolutely will not regret it!
Attached Thumbnails
ATC scm 110 asl - anyone using them?-img_9746.jpg  
Old 12th September 2016
  #16
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We indeed use ATC 110 A SL in-wall in a lot in our designs. There certainly is no shortage of LF. Flat down to 25-26Hz.

Very tight, quick & detailed bass. As the rest of the ATC range.

SCM50s have less LF, but will still cut off under 30Hz. Which is already more than most users need unless working on some specific types of EDM or Deep House music etc.

But all those we use are the active PRO version.

It's clearly a room issue, not a speaker issue.
Old 14th September 2016
  #17
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I won't spoil it, but when you guys start hearing about the rooms Thomas is doing you will be surprised. The search for better definition and higher quality is taking over the industry!

Brad
Old 14th September 2016
  #18
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Not an ATC user, though I listened to them and for sure they are great speakers.

Just chiming in to brag about my Northward room: best choice I ever made. When considering spending serious money on monitoring, think beyond basstraps and expensive monitors and contact Thomas to get familiar with his FTB control rooms.

Best regards,
Dirk
Old 14th September 2016
  #19
nms
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Looking at the pics, where LF response is concerned you are definitely hearing the room, not the speakers! Turn up some music with good low frequency content and walk around behind your speakers. You'll have a great deal of LF building up and bouncing back at you from various spots along the front end of your room. Bouncing back well out of phase and bringing much disappointment to your low frequency response. Moving to a new room will be good, and having it properly treated will make all the difference. Any speaker is only as good as the room allows it to be.
Old 14th September 2016
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nms View Post
<SNIP> Moving to a new room will be good, and having it properly treated will make all the difference. Any speaker is only as good as the room allows it to be.
Well said!

Speaker System = the room + the speaker working as a team.

Brad
Old 14th September 2016
  #21
Gear Maniac
Kinda OT, but nevertheless: how are you dealing with the heat generated by the power amp packs when soffit mounting active ATC's?
I have the 100's free standing and they do get pretty warm...
Old 14th September 2016
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mart View Post
Kinda OT, but nevertheless: how are you dealing with the heat generated by the power amp packs when soffit mounting active ATC's?
I have the 100's free standing and they do get pretty warm...
Remote mount them..get extension cables, pull the amp packs, mount them in a wall or in rack. ATC makes rack mount hardware for them and the wall cut out is here:

http://atcloudspeakers.co.uk/profess...scm100asl-pro/

Brad
Old 14th September 2016
  #23
Yup. We specified mine to be remote mounted. Am out for dinner but I'll take a pic when I get back to the studio.
Old 15th September 2016
  #24
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Thanks for your input guys! My current room - the one in the pics - is temporary, you've all made me well aware of the real problem and I can't thank you enough for that. The passive 50's are as good as sold though so I'll be needing new monitors. Active 50's or 110's; that remains open for now. I've contacted Thomas of Northward to get a demo of his room design.

@ brad ; thanks for the offer, as you guessed I won't make it to AES but man I wish one day I can hear all ATC's side by side.
@ nms ; you're spot on; lots of LF building up in that area behind the speakers.
Old 15th September 2016
  #25
nms
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emanuel23 View Post
I've contacted Thomas of Northward to get a demo of his room design.
A very wise idea!
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