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barefoot 27mm/spiral studio one/focal Studio Monitors
Old 28th May 2013
  #1
Gear Head
 

barefoot 27mm/spiral studio one/focal

Hi,
Thinking of getting the spiral studio one monitor..anyone with an experience with these 3 pair of speakers?
Thanks a lot
Old 29th May 2013
  #2
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Haha why yes, I do!

Spiral Grooves are the best mixing speaker hands down.

Barefoots are good, but next to the SG's they sound vield, muddy, compressed and very colored. They're still good speakers, but the SG's are a definite notch up in my books.

Focal Twins sounded utterly broken next to the SG's. Veiled, harsh, distorted, colored, scooped and very compressed.

Until you actually hear the Spiral Grooves next to these, it's hard to imagine what I'm talking about...but once you do you'll wonder where the SG's have been your whole life.
Old 29th May 2013
  #3
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I should also say, the SG's are amazing for tracking pretty much everything other than Bass/Drums as well...it's so nice being able to accurately hear exactly what's going on before you press record, and makes mic selections/placements painfully obvious. (Drums/bass are doable if you listen quietly, if you want to blast it add a subwoofer).

Also, the Spiral Grooves have the most defined/clear low end I've ever heard (ported speaker or not). They won't hit you in the chest like the MM27's do, but I can hear definition and detail in the low end I never heard on the MM27's
Old 29th May 2013
  #4
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kennydezotttk's Avatar
 

Where can you get the spiral grooves? Vintage king and sweetwater dont have em.. Are they still available?
Old 30th May 2013
  #5
Baz
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They must be pretty good because you have several gushing comments about the MM27's in the last year. I guess I'd have to hear these for myself as regardless how good they sound, I for the life of me could never imagine labeling the BF's "veiled, muddy and compressed." They are laser sharp and basically the flatest response I've ever used and you yourself referred to them as ruler flat. Regardless of how good these are, nothing in the characteristics you mentioned in the past has changed. They are what they are

Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerc View Post
Haha why yes, I do!

Spiral Grooves are the best mixing speaker hands down.

Barefoots are good, but next to the SG's they sound vield, muddy, compressed and very colored. They're still good speakers, but the SG's are a definite notch up in my books.

Focal Twins sounded utterly broken next to the SG's. Veiled, harsh, distorted, colored, scooped and very compressed.

Until you actually hear the Spiral Grooves next to these, it's hard to imagine what I'm talking about...but once you do you'll wonder where the SG's have been your whole life.
Old 30th May 2013
  #6
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I have experience with all 3. Let me first say that I think all 3 are great and you can do great work with any of them. I think the most important thing I have learned about monitors is that it is mostly about personal preference. And my personal preference has been to Genelec 1031a's, Yamaha NS-10's, and Digital Phase speakers. These are 3 monitors I knew were right for me within the first 5 seconds of hearing them. And I don't have any desire to work on anything else. I think you really need a fairly large room to get the most out of the barefoots and spiral groove would be better for a smaller room. Focals I did not care for. Barefoots let you see inside the mix better than any other monitor I've heard and would be my choice if my room was large enough.
Old 30th May 2013
  #7
Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerc View Post

Also, the Spiral Grooves have the most defined/clear low end I've ever heard (ported speaker or not). They won't hit you in the chest like the MM27's do, but I can hear definition and detail in the low end I never heard on the MM27's
Interesting that you would describe them that way. I wouldn't say that the Barefoots "hit you in the chest" at all. I usually reserve that description for ported speakers that are hyped (usually in the upper reaches of the sub range) and usually have some distortion. What the Barefoots have is incredible extension. They don't reach out and thump you but the low end goes on forever, extremely low and extremely accurately even at super low volumes. Sure you can make them thump if the track itself thumps but they themselves don't have ANY of the hype.

I find that the definition and detail in the low end is incredible but they do require a VERY well designed and treated room. You essentially 40" of sub so they need it to be right like almost no speaker I have heard before but when they are in a properly set up room they are stunning.
Old 30th May 2013
  #8
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Let me clarify...

The barefoots are not a "bloated, boomy, veiled, thumpy speaker" by any means, but next to the Spiral Grooves, those qualities become more "apparent" in the MM27's than if you had never heard the Sprial Grooves at all.

I'm not trying to bash the MM27's at all as they are great speakers, and like someone else pointed out above, they are very flat. I myself would have never dreamed that the MM27's we're coloured in any way or compressing the sound until I heard the SG's...and really it's going to be impossible for you to understand what I'm saying until you've also experienced it for yourself.

The MM27's low end is tight, but it's still big and if your mix is punchy the kick drum will punch you in the chest...that's all I meant. On the SG's, your not going to "feel" any of that low end without a sub. But you can hear it/mix it (much in the same way guys can mix the low end on NS10's).

Nothing I've ever heard does the mids/top end like the SG's do...even the MM12's (which have a stupidly incredible low end by the way!!).

Hopefully that clears up some of the confusion. Again, if you've never heard the SG's I get what you may think the claims I'm making about the MM27's seem ubsurd (and like I said, if I had never heard the SG's and read someone claiming these sorts of things about the MM27's I would also have passed them off as someone who has no idea what they're talking about), but once you check out the SG's next to these other two sets of speakers I have no doubts you'll hear exactly what I was hearing.

The SG's will really open up your eyes (or ears) as to how much coloration/distortion other speakers really add to the sound. And it's not like the SG's are the Holy Grail, but they're the closest I've heard and at their current price they're a complete steal.

(Btw I've checked out the SG's with a Bryston 4B, 3B, the $600 Class D amp and the Parasound A21...)
Old 31st May 2013
  #9
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I would put the barefoots several classes above the spiral grooves in terms of quality, clarity, and seeing into the mix. You get what you pay for make no mistake about it. That doesn't mean though that the barefoots are better for everyone.
Old 31st May 2013
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerc View Post
The SG's will really open up your eyes (or ears) as to how much coloration/distortion other speakers really add to the sound. And it's not like the SG's are the Holy Grail, but they're the closest I've heard and at their current price they're a complete steal.

(Btw I've checked out the SG's with a Bryston 4B, 3B, the $600 Class D amp and the Parasound A21...)
I would love to hear them but the "shop" on their site doesn't work (as in the page is missing), they don't list any retailers or price and a Google search doesn't produce a single dealer or price. What gives?
Old 31st May 2013
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
I would put the barefoots several classes above the spiral grooves in terms of quality, clarity, and seeing into the mix. You get what you pay for make no mistake about it. That doesn't mean though that the barefoots are better for everyone.
Really?? Have you had them side by side with a decent amp?
Old 31st May 2013
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Full Clip Audio View Post
I would love to hear them but the "shop" on their site doesn't work (as in the page is missing), they don't list any retailers or price and a Google search doesn't produce a single dealer or price. What gives?
I know, the website is baaaaad. I had to personally message Brian to figure out how to order them.

Here's the link he gave me:

Spiral Groove Studio Monitors — Home
Old 31st May 2013
  #13
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And they don't have any retailers/dealers which is why google isn't turning anything up. It's a small couple person operation I believe...all hand made etc...
Old 31st May 2013
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerc View Post
Really?? Have you had them side by side with a decent amp?
Yes. I had owned and used barefoot mm27's for about 3 years and they are just phenomenal. I used the spiral grooves with a parasound A23. It's not even close. Barefoots are way more revealing, flatter in frequency response, much more 3d, realistic and natural sounding. Spiral Grooves are cool and maybe for some would make a better mixing tool and I would probably agree they would be better for small rooms. Which brings up the point that perhaps in your room the bass was overwhelming from the barefoots. I know that was the case for me when I moved to a smaller room which is why I had to sell them. But they have since made the smaller mm35's which are probably better suited for a smaller room. So it's probably a closer comparison to compare the mm35's to the animas. Which again I would give it to the barefoots. They are just so dam revealing, and 3d.
Old 31st May 2013
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
Yes. I had owned and used barefoot mm27's for about 3 years and they are just phenomenal. I used the spiral grooves with a parasound A23. It's not even close. Barefoots are way more revealing, flatter in frequency response, much more 3d, realistic and natural sounding. Spiral Grooves are cool and maybe for some would make a better mixing tool and I would probably agree they would be better for small rooms. Which brings up the point that perhaps in your room the bass was overwhelming from the barefoots. I know that was the case for me when I moved to a smaller room which is why I had to sell them. But they have since made the smaller mm35's which are probably better suited for a smaller room. So it's probably a closer comparison to compare the mm35's to the animas. Which again I would give it to the barefoots. They are just so dam revealing, and 3d.
Weird, because it was the complete opposite for me..the Spiral Grooves were night and day far more 3D and revealing, and I'm not in a tiny room...

Maybe there was something wrong with the Amp you were using? Because speaker preference aside, there's no way the barefoots are more revealing than the SG's other than in the sub frequencies...

(Also, the Sonics Animas are different than the Spiral Grooves...)
Old 31st May 2013
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerc View Post
Weird, because it was the complete opposite for me..the Spiral Grooves were night and day far more 3D and revealing, and I'm not in a tiny room...

Maybe there was something wrong with the Amp you were using? Because speaker preference aside, there's no way the barefoots are more revealing than the SG's other than in the sub frequencies...

(Also, the Sonics Animas are different than the Spiral Grooves...)
Maybe you don't have enough bass trapping in your room to get the most out of the barefoots. I know I worked with them in a couple of rooms and they were great in one and not so great in the other. There is nothing wrong with my amp. The Spiral grooves are brighter that is for sure and have more "air" to them. But like I said once I moved to a smaller room I would choose them over the barefoots. But in any case I came back to Genelec 1031A's and Yamaha ns-10's and that's my preference over either of those.
Old 31st May 2013
  #17
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Old 1st June 2013
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
Maybe you don't have enough bass trapping in your room to get the most out of the barefoots. I know I worked with them in a couple of rooms and they were great in one and not so great in the other. There is nothing wrong with my amp. The Spiral grooves are brighter that is for sure and have more "air" to them. But like I said once I moved to a smaller room I would choose them over the barefoots. But in any case I came back to Genelec 1031A's and Yamaha ns-10's and that's my preference over either of those.
I guess it's possible, but my room was professionally designed and is heavily treated. I know I'm not the first to move from Barefoots to the SG's too...so it's probably just coming down to personal preference at this point. I believe Rich Costey also chose the SG's over the MM27's even though he's quote on both manufacturers websites as liking each speaker...

There's a reason why a lot of guys are switching from MM27's to ATC 25's...the mids on the Barefoots are colored (although they sound great), but they definitely do cast the "Barefoot" sound on everything you hear from them. If you like that sound, awesome! But it's undeniable that it's there...do any search comparisons on these two speakers and you'll find countless guys agreeing. I almost bought some ATC 25's myself to pair with the SG's actually cause they sound great!

I agree re NS10's...I still have mine and won't be getting rid of them.

And if we're talking tracking, Barefoots are definitely still a good notch above the SG's. But for me, mixing at lower volumes the SG's reveal so much more and have much greater dynamics/lower distortion/depth that it was no contest. EQ choices are much more obvious in the mids too. The amp does make a big difference though...the Parasound A21 is head and shoulders above my Bryston 4B, and I know the A23 is a big step down from the A21...so it fairs to reason that you weren't hearing everything the SG's can really do.
Old 6th June 2013
  #19
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dwaynedelario's Avatar
 

Sonics Anima + Parasound A21 user here. So far, nothing has come close to this combo for me. The midrange of the MM27 definitely has a sound (opinions aside), but I need a setup for a larger room and the MM27 Gen2 has me very interested. Anyone heard these yet?
Old 6th June 2013
  #20
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No, but I've ordered a pair...very excited.

Heard the MM12's and although they're not like the Spiral Grooves, they tweeter is a big step in that direction and they've got way better depth/imaging than the original MM27

I think the MM27 gen 2 for tracking with the Spiral Grooves for mixing is going to be AMAZING.

(also using A21 + SG's for mixing right now, and I had MM27's gen 1 for years)
Old 7th June 2013
  #21
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dwaynedelario's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerc View Post
No, but I've ordered a pair...very excited.
Awesome Spencer. Did VK say how long it would take to ship them?
Old 7th June 2013
  #22
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nomatic's Avatar
I mixed a tone of records on the barefoot's and I sold them after mixing
on the Spiral Groove's for an hour and listening to the translation.
I have used all three speakers and would recommend the Spiral's
over almost anything out there for mixing. Easiest speakers for EQ and
balance I have used in my twenty years of knob twiddling....
Old 7th June 2013
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nomatic View Post
I mixed a tone of records on the barefoot's and I sold them after mixing
on the Spiral Groove's for an hour and listening to the translation.
I have used all three speakers and would recommend the Spiral's
over almost anything out there for mixing. Easiest speakers for EQ and
balance I have used in my twenty years of knob twiddling....
Completely agree, and same went for me!...two mixes with the Spiral Grooves and I sold the MM27's.

But...I'm getting the MM27 Gen 2 for tracking monitors. Slutty, I know...
Old 7th June 2013
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwaynedelario View Post
Awesome Spencer. Did VK say how long it would take to ship them?
Actually I'm up in Canada, so I ordered from Studio Economik (our version of VK).

No date yet, but hopefully it's not long.

I'll report back when I see how they sound. It's going to be very interesting hearing them next to the SG's with an A21 amp...
Old 7th June 2013
  #25
My Focal CMS50's translate on everything from 2cent computer speakers to $190K Focal Grande Utopia's.

I am not joking
Old 7th June 2013
  #26
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BAREFOOT MM27s are amazing.
If the low end thump of a kick drum is hitting you in the chest turn them down !
They sound great loud but if its pure detail your after, they will be more accurate if listened to at volumes that don't hit you in the chest. IMHO
I own them, use them, love them and I consider myself extreamly luck to hear audio of this quality.
Maybe thats why they sound muddy to you because they are bringing out elements the others simply cannot translate.
BAREFOOT MM27s best Iv ever heard

The idea is to have studio monitors that reproduce exactly what is recorded.
Not that sound home theatre hifi
Old 7th June 2013
  #27
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Barefoots are superb in anyway. When something sounds muddy on them it basically means the song itself is badly mixed.
Old 7th June 2013
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phatbeatstudio View Post
BAREFOOT MM27s are amazing.
If the low end thump of a kick drum is hitting you in the chest turn them down !
They sound great loud but if its pure detail your after, they will be more accurate if listened to at volumes that don't hit you in the chest. IMHO
I own them, use them, love them and I consider myself extreamly luck to hear audio of this quality.
Maybe thats why they sound muddy to you because they are bringing out elements the others simply cannot translate.
BAREFOOT MM27s best Iv ever heard

The idea is to have studio monitors that reproduce exactly what is recorded.
Not that sound home theatre hifi
Not arguing there!...but....

Until you've heard the Spiral Grooves it's hard to understand what I'm talking about. Trust me - I thought the MM27's were the greatest speakers on earth until I heard the SG's.

I know people probably think I'm crazy for saying the stuff I'm saying about the MM27's, and if I had not heard the SG's I would consider anyone else saying these sorts of things to be an amateur, deaf or just simply have a terrible room.

But do a search...there's quite a few people who have INSTANTLY sold their barefoots after working with the SG's for one mix now...and I predict that number is just going to grow.

(PS I have nothing against Barefoot - I actually just ordered a pair of the Gen 2 MM27's to use as mains for tracking...)
Old 7th June 2013
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simones View Post
Barefoots are superb in anyway. When something sounds muddy on them it basically means the song itself is badly mixed.
Again - I'm not saying they are muddy speakers, but when you put them next to the SG's everything suddenly becomes more open, dynamic, clear and 3D, and any problems in the mix instantly pop out, and EQ balances/choices become painfully obvious.

I used to think the MM27's were super clean, clear and uncoloring speakers as well (having used them for years, getting great results), but 10 seconds next to the SG's, and they'll show you just how colored and compressed sounding the MM27s are.

But, also realize that having listened to tons of other speakers, even over $20k...I would still choose the MM27's for tracking 10/10 times, and even as a mixing speaker if I didn't own the SG's. It's not like the MM27's are any worse of a speaker than they were to start with. It's just that the Spiral Grooves are THAT incredible.

You really just have to hear the SG's to know what I'm talking about...
Old 7th June 2013
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerc View Post

You really just have to hear the SG's to know what I'm talking about...
How exactly would one go about doing that? I would love to but they seem determined not to sell any.
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