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Barefoot MicroMain 26
Old 18th March 2017
  #1
Here for the gear
Barefoot MicroMain 26

Hi everyone! This is my first post here :-)

I'm mixing records on a daily basis and I am looking for a monitors to upgrade from my Focal's SM9.

I'm interested in new MM26's, It's very hard to get a demo pair in Europe. I'll probably have a chance to listen to them at Frankfurt Messe in April. Although there are on a market for more than a year now, I cannot find any reviews in magazines, no listening tests, no user reviews here on Gearslutz, nothing apart pictures with some great mixers like Michael Brauer and short commercials.

Does anybody actually have them, use it for mixing/mastering and could share some thought and opinions or maybe write a review ?. Are they that good that it justifies triple the price of Focal SM9's ? How do they sound compared to MM27's? Thomas Barefoot claims there are the best nearfield monitors on a planet at the moment...
Old 18th March 2017
  #2
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianhazard View Post
How do they sound compared to MM27's? Thomas Barefoot claims there are the best nearfield monitors on a planet at the moment...
The Barefoot MM26 are ONE OF the best nearfield monitors on a planet at the moment...

Definitive !


Compared to the MM27, the MM26 are again a step better.
A much finer and higher resolution in the mids.

If you have that amount of money, my explicit recommendation.

Hope this helps !

R.
Old 18th March 2017
  #3
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I heard them at Vintage King and they sounded pretty bad to me. A lot stuffier than the MM27 with no real added benefit. The sales guy felt the same way. Everything we referenced just sounded pretty off compared to every other speaker in the room. I'm not a big Barefoot guy but the MM26 struck me as a pointless product. MM27's, MM35's, and I've extensively heard MM12's...they all made sense to me. The MM26 however, really missed the mark to me. If you want the Barefoot sound, I'd look into the MM27 or MM45 (I've heard they are more similar in style to MM12's just smaller. MM12's were my favorite Barefoot by far)
Old 18th March 2017
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brianhazard View Post
Thomas Barefoot claims there are the best nearfield monitors on a planet at the moment...
What else would you expect him to say?

(I actually prefer the MM27 gen2 also over the MM26. Though the 26 is pricer it isn't a "step above" -- it is a different type of speaker for those who prefer that "flavour" with the MM27 operating as a 3-1/2 way speaker and the MM26 operating as a 4-way speaker; The MM26 isn't a MM27 with an added midrange -- there's more to it than that.)
Old 18th March 2017
  #5
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I have them think they are great. I work in a large room and the multiple subs per cabinet seem to work really well at evening out the low-end

They are clearly high end quality so the only remaining question is your personal taste/Budget
Old 18th March 2017
  #6
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Seems like there are mixed reviews here ...
Old 19th March 2017
  #7
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianhazard View Post
Seems like there are mixed reviews here ...
@ brianhazard
Gearslutz has also a 'Search function' !
Very easy to use... childishly simple...

Here a interesting MM26 thread.
gearslutz.com - mm26



R
Old 19th March 2017
  #8
Here for the gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rolf Ebitsch View Post
@ brianhazard
Gearslutz has also a 'Search function' !
Very easy to use... childishly simple...

Here a interesting MM26 thread.
gearslutz.com - mm26

R

Hi @ Rolf , I've been there, read that. Not very helpful though as users seems to love their MM26 for their inredible precise midrange, others hate them for stiffness or harshness. It's a bit confusing for a high end speakers considering price point to have such different reviews.
Old 19th March 2017
  #9
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shelterr's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by brianhazard View Post
Hi @ Rolf , I've been there, read that. Not very helpful though as users seems to love their MM26 for their inredible precise midrange, others hate them for stiffness or harshness. It's a bit confusing for a high end speakers considering price point to have such different reviews.
You are correct. Mixed reviews there as well. Trust your gut. If you want the Barefoot sound, go a more trusted route.

I have no horse in this race (I'm not a Barefoot guy personally) but I have heard enough of them to know the MM26 probably isn't what you are looking for. Seems like a shootout between the MM27 and MM45 in your price range.
Old 20th March 2017
  #10
OMU
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I haven't heard the 26 but I've worked a lot on MicroMain 27, both gen1 and 2, and also on the MasterStack 12. MasterStack is IMO an amazing system, and MM27 gen2 sound surprisingly good in a direct comparison, of course, with less detail overall and a much smaller sweet spot.

While I absolutely love the MS12 I would choose (and I actually did) the Amphion Two18 over either of the MM27 versions. You don't get the same impressive low end impact and bass quantity, but everything I worked on the Two18 sounded perfect on the big MS12 system.
Old 22nd March 2017
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brianhazard View Post
Seems like there are mixed reviews here ...
Perhaps but I would give weight to people who actually use them over time and/or own them
Old 22nd March 2017
  #12
Gear Head
 

MM27 gen 2 owner here. Something to keep in mind, the 27 is what put them on the map in the first place & 8 times out of 10 your going to see the 27's on top of a console and not the 26's. Not downplaying the 26's because I have personally never demo'd them, but I did demo the mm35's prior to sending them back for the 27's and it was the best decision I made. I can honestly say i would not change them for absolutely anything except maybe the minimain 12's if I had the coin for them and a large enough room. I fee like the frequency response of the 27's perfect and adding another driver to that speaker is like trying to fix something that isn't broken, if that makes sense. No downplay to the all he 26 owners out there.. just my 2c.
Old 22nd March 2017
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shelterr View Post
I heard them at Vintage King and they sounded pretty bad to me. A lot stuffier than the MM27 Everything we referenced just sounded pretty off compared to every other speaker in the room.
I also heard them at VK LA and walked away with the same impression.
Something was way off with them. Midrange honk. not extended. etc.
No way would Thomas release a speaker that sounded like that. (I've owned 27's, demo'd 45s, worked on 35s - gen1 and gen2)
I sort of assumed that there was an issue with their setup or the MEME was set to an alternative setting or ..........
Old 22nd March 2017
  #14
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Thanks guys for all your opinions! It seems that MM27 gen2 is the way to go. I have Amphions One18 as well. I like their relaxed, elegant sound and for me there are second pair I check my mixes on. I am looking for great MAIN nearfield that will inspire me, give some excitement, with great midrange clarity but not honky one I think I'll pass on MM26's and save some cash for a new Amtec 852 for instant . Cheers!
Old 23rd March 2017
  #15
QRS
Gear Maniac
 

hi everyone,

i´m a recording and mixing guy working with studio monitors - not just listening to some music in a musicstore.

i dont want to go into debate too much but i mixed on these monitors in my room (26&27, also 45) for months and bought then the barefoot mm26.

and i dont like ragtime sound.

cheers, matthias
Attached Thumbnails
Barefoot MicroMain 26-mm26-one18.jpg   Barefoot MicroMain 26-mm27gen2-one18.jpg  

Last edited by QRS; 23rd March 2017 at 01:48 PM..
Old 23rd March 2017
  #16
Quote:
Originally Posted by QRS View Post
hi everyone,

i´m a recording and mixing guy working with studio monitors - not just listening to some music in a musicstore.

i dont want to go into debate too much but i mixed on these monitors in my room (26&27, also 45) for months and bought then the barefoot mm26.

and i dont like ragtime sound.

cheers, matthias


I can only agree with that !

I'm also Barefoot MM27 and MM45 owner.
Listen extensively to the MM26 and realized they are a step above the MM27.

R.
Old 23rd March 2017
  #17
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Sounds like Thomas might wanna have someone head down to VKLA and see what's going, because whatever I heard wasn't the kind of difference that "mixing on them for a while" would fix. They did not seem like a viable option and I did think it was a pretty odd and unBarefoot-like sounding speaker. I'd be pleased to know they actually sound better than whatever I heard.
Old 23rd March 2017
  #18
To the OP - I don't think you can go wrong with MM27's, they are a great speaker. But asking for opinions on high end monitors on this site is pretty much the equivalent of asking 20 random people who has the best pizza in town.

None of the top monitors are going to prevent you from getting good results - it's pretty much a matter of personal taste at this level. Pick something you like and get on with making music.
Old 23rd March 2017
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shelterr View Post
Sounds like Thomas might wanna have someone head down to VKLA and see what's going, because whatever I heard wasn't the kind of difference that "mixing on them for a while" would fix. They did not seem like a viable option and I did think it was a pretty odd and unBarefoot-like sounding speaker. I'd be pleased to know they actually sound better than whatever I heard.
Totally agree.
I was being polite with my previous post. The set of 26's at VK LA sounded seriously bad. Total WTF experience.
Old 24th March 2017
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianhazard View Post
I am looking for great MAIN nearfield that will inspire me, give some excitement, with great midrange clarity.
brianhazard, exactly that's the advantages of the MM26 with the extra detailed 2.5” aluminum cone midrange with 180 Watt for each monitor.
The whole midrange frequency band is 10-20% clearer and tidy against the MM27.
The 2.5” aluminum cone midrange are superb ! Believe me.

I suppose, the VK Barefoot MM26 problem was, that the Meme “Cube” (Auratone) setting emulation was on ! (mere surmise)



R.
Old 27th March 2017
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rolf Ebitsch View Post
brianhazard, exactly that's the advantages of the MM26 with the extra detailed 2.5” aluminum cone midrange with 180 Watt for each monitor.
The whole midrange frequency band is 10-20% clearer and tidy against the MM27.
The 2.5” aluminum cone midrange are superb ! Believe me.

I suppose, the VK Barefoot MM26 problem was, that the Meme “Cube” (Auratone) setting emulation was on ! (mere surmise)



R.
Thomas Barefoot summarizes it by suggesting we think of the MM27 as a two way design and the MM26 as a three way. Although that is not strictly accurate because of the unique designs involved, that is an excellent way to compare the speakers and understand the differences between them.
Old 27th March 2017
  #22
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Steve, that's why it's so perplexing that several people have had very bad experiences with the mm26 even though they like/love the mm27. some people may slightly prefer a two way to a three way From a given manufacturer, but rarely do people hate the three way and love the two way. Just for the sake of example, I know some people prefer the atc scm20s to the scm25s, but I have yet to hear of anyone loving the 20s but hating the 25s. Granted, the ones who seem to hate it all demoed the 26s at vk la, right?
Old 27th March 2017
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlaws View Post
Steve, that's why it's so perplexing that several people have had very bad experiences with the mm26 even though they like/love the mm27. some people may slightly prefer a two way to a three way From a given manufacturer, but rarely do people hate the three way and love the two way. Just for the sake of example, I know some people prefer the atc scm20s to the scm25s, but I have yet to hear of anyone loving the 20s but hating the 25s. Granted, the ones who seem to hate it all demoed the 26s at vk la, right?
I had both SCM20 and SCM25. I loved SCM20 and really hated SCM25. But it is not about two or three way, since I absolutely adore SCM50 and SCM150.
Old 27th March 2017
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlaws View Post
Granted, the ones who seem to hate it all demoed the 26s at vk la, right?
In my case, yes.

I like the BF 45's very much so I know what that mid driver can sound like.
The 26's at VK just sounded wrong. (honkey thin upper mids). Its not the room as ATC 45's sounded correct right next to them.

I'm a fan of BF. Hoping someone looks into that particular set/setup. I was intending to write the check for the 26's the day I dropped in.
I left completely puzzled.
Old 29th March 2017
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlaws View Post
Steve, that's why it's so perplexing that several people have had very bad experiences with the mm26 even though they like/love the mm27. some people may slightly prefer a two way to a three way From a given manufacturer, but rarely do people hate the three way and love the two way. Just for the sake of example, I know some people prefer the atc scm20s to the scm25s, but I have yet to hear of anyone loving the 20s but hating the 25s. Granted, the ones who seem to hate it all demoed the 26s at vk la, right?
I suspect these reports are based on a faulty set of speakers or incorrect configuration. The ATC example is a great one- 25s are pretty different than the 20s but the difference is not extreme enough to hate one and love the other. MM26s are world class speakers the only issue is preferences when comparing to MM27s

Something is "off" in these reports
Old 29th March 2017
  #26
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RoundBadge's Avatar
weird all the 26 slack I'm reading here.
I'm currently going from 27 gen 2's[right next to amphion one18's] to 26's.
to me a big step up.
yeah I don't ever judge speakers by VKLA's setup.I take 'em home.
I remember a jacked pair of gen 1's from them making the demo rounds for a while.
demo stuff..sh*t happens.
Old 29th March 2017
  #27
Quote:
Originally Posted by RoundBadge View Post
Weird all the 26 slack I'm reading here.
Wise words from a wise man !

R.
Old 6th April 2018
  #28
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mm26s are much much much much much much better than mm27s
Old 29th April 2018
  #29
Here for the gear
Tested all the monitors at vintage king. Yes forget these old zombie posts on the thread. The mm26 significantly better than the 27, without debate. It provides more information more accurately. And mm12s only provide more mass and weight to the sound.
Old 30th April 2018
  #30
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It is possible that something weird was going on with the MEME setup. While the speakers are amazing, they use the cheapest 3.5mm cables on the planet to control the settings. I had to switch out my cables because it was not making proper contact and screwing up the settings in a weird way.
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