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Which better with subs - Focal SM9s or KH310s or JBL 6332s?
Old 8th March 2014
  #1
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Which better with subs - Focal SM9s or KH310s or JBL 6332s?

Title pretty much says it all. I'm looking to replace my current 3-ways with one of the above monitors combined with a pair of subs.

The subs will have continuously variable phase, so hopefully I'll be able to dial out any cancellation issues.

My question is, which speakers do you think will pair best with subs?

Oddly enough, the 6332s need the sub the most. How JBL managed to make a ported speaker with a 12" woofer that has almost nothing below say 50 Hz is quite an accomplishment. Anyway, I need the sub with the 6332 for the missing freqs.

I've auditioned all three speakers and feel I can do good work on all of them, but I can't get the SM9 or the KH310 in my actual room. So for those speakers, I need the sub to make sure I can fill in any holes resulting from potential room mode dips. Seems unlikely there won't be any room mode cancellation issues. My room is well treated, so please no comments to treat my room first. We all know you can't get it perfect. Also, neither of those monitors go loud enough for when clients are present, so the sub would help with that.

I'm no speaker theory expert but I would think the KH310s would be the best on paper, no? For one thing, the crossover for the woofer is relatively high (like 600 Hz), so the woofer would still be doing some work if the sub crossover is at 85 Hz. With the Focals I'm worried that it might become a hot mess, with the sub, passive radiator, and SM9 woofer all potentially trying to reproduce similar frequencies. I don't know at what freq the passive radiator starts to kick in though. Maybe if the sub crossover is 85 Hz it wouldn't work at all??

What do you all think?
Old 8th March 2014
  #2
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MIKEHARRIS's Avatar
Gut feeling agrees, may be less conflicts with 310. Which sub you gonna use ? We have had some success with the SoloSub...and the JL Audio subs.
Old 8th March 2014
  #3
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jimbridgman's Avatar
Well, right off I have to say if you are not getting anything below 50HZ with the 6332, then something is wrong.

I have the older model of this speaker, the LSR32s and I have had them since 97 or 98, and I will say that I used to have a ton of issues with low end, until I put up way more bass traps, like so many it was crazy... And my rooms have always been very well treated and tuned. I can get my LSR 32s (biamped with 2 bryston 4b's), to go to about 35 or so HZ without a sub now. The LSR32s are VERY, VERY dependant on the room.

I am looking at replacements for my LSR32s right now as well, but I am looking at the PSI A25m, Quested V3110, and the Barefoot mm27.

Out of what you have listed I would think the KH310s with a sub will do well... just be warned that they are very clinical, the 6332s sound very musical and hence very easy and enjoyable to mix on and show mixes to clients on. The KH310s when I listened to them did not have much musical-ness to them, but I could very accurately set compression, reverb tails, etc. with them, and small eq changes stood out well.

These are just my thoughts, and some of the reasons I moved to the next step up in looking at the ones I will be getting in the next month or so. YMMV.

P.S. I still LOVE, the LSR32s, just think after 16 or so years with them it is time for a change.

Jim
Old 8th March 2014
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MIKEHARRIS View Post
Gut feeling agrees, may be less conflicts with 310. Which sub you gonna use ? We have had some success with the SoloSub...and the JL Audio subs.
I'm gonna use KRK 12SHO subs. They are very reasonably priced from my dealer and they have the continuous phase control I need.
Old 8th March 2014
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbridgman View Post
Well, right off I have to say if you are not getting anything below 50HZ with the 6332, then something is wrong.

I have the older model of this speaker, the LSR32s and I have had them since 97 or 98, and I will say that I used to have a ton of issues with low end, until I put up way more bass traps, like so many it was crazy... And my rooms have always been very well treated and tuned. I can get my LSR 32s (biamped with 2 bryston 4b's), to go to about 35 or so HZ without a sub now. The LSR32s are VERY, VERY dependant on the room.

I am looking at replacements for my LSR32s right now as well, but I am looking at the PSI A25m, Quested V3110, and the Barefoot mm27.

Out of what you have listed I would think the KH310s with a sub will do well... just be warned that they are very clinical, the 6332s sound very musical and hence very easy and enjoyable to mix on and show mixes to clients on. The KH310s when I listened to them did not have much musical-ness to them, but I could very accurately set compression, reverb tails, etc. with them, and small eq changes stood out well.

These are just my thoughts, and some of the reasons I moved to the next step up in looking at the ones I will be getting in the next month or so. YMMV.

P.S. I still LOVE, the LSR32s, just think after 16 or so years with them it is time for a change.

Jim
Hey Jim,

I was exaggerating a little about the low end on the 6332s but they're not even close to enough below 50. I mix mostly electronic/urban music and I need flat down to at least 40 Hz. They just sound too thin without subs.

FWIW, I thought the 6332s sounded rather clinical as well (at least compared to the speakers they're replacing), but very detailed and they had really nice transient response, even at high volume. The only reason I'm considering the other options frankly is because some people have said you need to be at least 6' away from the 6332s for them to be usable. I wouldn't be able to get my mix position that far from them--more like 5 feet. What's your experience with distance from the 6332s? If I can't get 6 feet away should I just go with something else?

I only had them in my room for one evening and I didn't do any mixing. Frankly, the drivers seem about the same distance apart as many other 3-ways intended for near-field usage, so I'm not sure why they would be so distance-dependent.

I feel you on just wanting a change from the LSRs. I've had the NHT M100s I'm replacing since 1997, and am just ready for a change myself.
Old 8th March 2014
  #6
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The JBL's have a low port frequency so in an anachoic room the response shows a tapering of LF. In a real room there is what's colloquially called 'room gain', where the speakers are in the pressure zone of the room, meaning there is a natural boost in LF as it loads off all the walls. So as mentioned, depending on the room it can be quite good.

People who believe you need to be far away from speakers with big drivers are still living in the 70s. The physics that govern minimum listening distance of a speakers is the distance between the tweeter and midrange vs the crossover frequency. The further they (mid vs tweeter) are from each other and the higher the XO frequency the more narrow the window that is free from lobing (dips in FR at XO freq).

The rule of thumb for ~3ft listening distance is take the speed of sound (inches ~13500 ips) the center to center of tweeter to mid (inches)= XO frequency or below. So the JBL at 13500/5(?)=2700 and the XO freq is 2.2k (below 2700 is better for closer listening...). Long story short it will have about the same lobe free window as any other speaker who's XO point is just below there and is fine for closer listening. Anecdotally I had LSR32's and had no measured XO lobing issues @~4'.
Old 8th March 2014
  #7
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jimbridgman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by KFunk View Post
Hey Jim,

I was exaggerating a little about the low end on the 6332s but they're not even close to enough below 50. I mix mostly electronic/urban music and I need flat down to at least 40 Hz. They just sound too thin without subs.

FWIW, I thought the 6332s sounded rather clinical as well (at least compared to the speakers they're replacing), but very detailed and they had really nice transient response, even at high volume. The only reason I'm considering the other options frankly is because some people have said you need to be at least 6' away from the 6332s for them to be usable. I wouldn't be able to get my mix position that far from them--more like 5 feet. What's your experience with distance from the 6332s? If I can't get 6 feet away should I just go with something else?

I only had them in my room for one evening and I didn't do any mixing. Frankly, the drivers seem about the same distance apart as many other 3-ways intended for near-field usage, so I'm not sure why they would be so distance-dependent.

I feel you on just wanting a change from the LSRs. I've had the NHT M100s I'm replacing since 1997, and am just ready for a change myself.
Hey, yeah with electronic type music, low end with the LSRs may need a sub, in your room. I can get down to 35hz pretty flat, but the roll off from 50 or so down, will be hard to handle if you are tweaking an 808 kick... I mix mostly rock, metal, jazz type music, so the LSRs were great for that.

I have my LSR32s on the top of my console's meter bridge, so it is probably about 4 feet from my seating position, and I have no issues that close, they are about 7-8 feet apart and angled in I have them in the upright position, as I felt having them on their side, they lacked power (or the feeling of power, or chest thump) in my room, so I changed the orientation (as you can shift the mid and tweet on them) and they were way better.

Were the speakers you tried broken it?


Mine sounded clinical until they were broken in (I turned them on and played music for 24 hours straight at mid level volume), this took a lot of the clinical sound out of them.
They are a little hyped in my opinion, but for the styles of music I record, mix, and produce they are perfect.

If you are doing more electronic type music I would really go for the KH310s, it seems a lot of top producers in that genre like them. If you do a fair bit of reading about the LSR32s and 6332s they are really preferred by a lot ROCK producers for the very mid forward and where the low end tends to hit perfectly (about 50-90hz).

I will say that the placement is key with the 6332s and where you had them may not have been a good spot in the room, for them.
When I moved to my new place in 2006, I tried the speakers in 10 different spots (sometimes moving them 6"), until they sounded perfect (without treatment in the room). Then I treated the room, of course, before moving all the gear and setting the room up.
They can run in mid or nearfield very well, do to the linear response that they give. If you do put them more in the midfield then the room becomes even more of a factor. Where mine are, tend to be just on the edge of mid and nearfield and the room plays a huge role for them. This is another reason I think the kh310s may be better for you, since it sounds like you were not able to get the 6332s in that "perfect" spot, when you tried them, because when you do, you will know it.

Just some food for thought, and anymore you want to know or have questions about with these let me know. I have my room torn apart today to get some new gear in, and get some maintenance done, so I will be on here since we are not "working" today or tomorrow.

Jim
Old 8th March 2014
  #8
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The 6 foot info for the JBL LSR32 and LSR6332 (basically the same speaker only shielded for use next to tube video moniters) is correct with my experience but it could be due to that particular room/placement (they didn't open up until roughly 6'). They are sold as and best used as midfield speaker in practice. As far as them needing a sub, if the room is right they don't. If you don't have space for a midfield speaker setup I doubt your room will give good even sub bass levels. Remember it's not just the speaker specs; it's the INTERACTION of the speaker, it's placement, and the room that will determine what you hear. Spending on getting the best out of your room will be the most productive use of resources however the room's geometry will be a major factor regardless (something usually too costly to change). THEN try to audition speakers in your room if possible.

Given your preference for a JBL reference speaker, your listed need for nearfields, and that you have subs already, put the JBL LSR28/LSR28P/LSR6328/LSR6328P on your research/audition list.
Old 8th March 2014
  #9
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phillysoulman's Avatar
 

get a pair of JBL 6328ps and never look back
I love mine.....Ive had them ever since they came out
No sub needed and personally,that would be overkill
Old 8th March 2014
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bassmankr View Post
The 6 foot info for the JBL LSR32 and LSR6332 (basically the same speaker only shielded for use next to tube video moniters) is correct with my experience but it could be due to that particular room/placement (they didn't open up until roughly 6'). They are sold as and best used as midfield speaker in practice. As far as them needing a sub, if the room is right they don't. If you don't have space for a midfield speaker setup I doubt your room will give good even sub bass levels. Remember it's not just the speaker specs; it's the INTERACTION of the speaker, it's placement, and the room that will determine what you hear. Spending on getting the best out of your room will be the most productive use of resources however the room's geometry will be a major factor regardless (something usually too costly to change). THEN try to audition speakers in your room if possible.

Given your preference for a JBL reference speaker, your listed need for nearfields, and that you have subs already, put the JBL LSR28/LSR28P/LSR6328/LSR6328P on your research/audition list.
My subs are flat at the mix position I'm currently situated. It's not that I don't have the space, but that moving back far enough to get 6 feet from the 6332s would create problems with the LF response of my other speakers (running them without the subs). As you say, it's how the speakers interact with the room and I'm not situated where I'm at by accident.

I'm not sure what kind of music you work on but the 6332s would definitely need subs for me, regardless of the room, unless they were artificially loaded up in the low end somehow via EQ or something. I had them close to the front wall in my studio and they still weren't adequate below 50. My room is plenty big and very well treated. I appreciate the opinions and all. It does get tiring on this forum when soliciting speaker advice and people tell you to spend money on acoustic treatment. The assumption that someone has inadequate treatment and/or a sub-par room gets tiring. There's imperfections in even the best rooms and there will always be compromises, especially when trying to optimize the response of more than one set of full-range speakers.

But, it sounds like I should probably just get a set of 3-ways designed more for near-field use.
Old 8th March 2014
  #11
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jimbridgman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by KFunk View Post
My subs are flat at the mix position I'm currently situated. It's not that I don't have the space, but that moving back far enough to get 6 feet from the 6332s would create problems with the LF response of my other speakers (running them without the subs). As you say, it's how the speakers interact with the room and I'm not situated where I'm at by accident.

I'm not sure what kind of music you work on but the 6332s would definitely need subs for me, regardless of the room, unless they were artificially loaded up in the low end somehow via EQ or something. I had them close to the front wall in my studio and they still weren't adequate below 50. My room is plenty big and very well treated. I appreciate the opinions and all. It does get tiring on this forum when soliciting speaker advice and people tell you to spend money on acoustic treatment. The assumption that someone has inadequate treatment and/or a sub-par room gets tiring. There's imperfections in even the best rooms and there will always be compromises, especially when trying to optimize the response of more than one set of full-range speakers.

But, it sounds like I should probably just get a set of 3-ways designed more for near-field use.
It is not that people are telling you get more treatment because your room treatment sucks or something, or that you don't know or have not treated your room... just that the LSR speakers are VERY, VERY, VERY dependant on the room dimensions, and bass treatment and placement is key with them.

As I mentioned I had a perfectly professionally treated room, and after bringing the LSR32s in my room for the first time in late 90s, I had to redo the treatment because of the low end interaction of the speakers, and when I moved in 2006, it was even worse for the guy who did my room treatment and tuning due to these speakers... Room placement of them was the key for them to work well in my room, then after that it was time to do some very heavy low end treatments... no subs needed in my room now for any other speaker I have brought in here, that is how well it needed to be treated for my LSR32s to work in here.

So don't get upset about people telling you about treatment, with these speakers it is way worse, and more important to re-treat/tune your room to them, to get the most out of them, they are monsters...

You really need to treat them the same as if you were going to put in UREI, Augspurger, etc. Big in wall mains.

Also they may just not work in your room, which happens, and why we try monitors in our rooms, but for a speaker that I really like, I will completely change out my treatment if I need to, and I will include that cost in my overhead for new monitors, just in case, then if not I can use it for other gear, or to reinvest in the business.

If you are going to look at other 3 ways.... try to find a used set of Barefoot mm27s... there are a couple pairs in the classifieds on here.... highly recommended. and they are meant to go in the nearfield position.

Jim
Old 8th March 2014
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
The JBL's have a low port frequency so in an anachoic room the response shows a tapering of LF. In a real room there is what's colloquially called 'room gain', where the speakers are in the pressure zone of the room, meaning there is a natural boost in LF as it loads off all the walls. So as mentioned, depending on the room it can be quite good.

People who believe you need to be far away from speakers with big drivers are still living in the 70s. The physics that govern minimum listening distance of a speakers is the distance between the tweeter and midrange vs the crossover frequency. The further they (mid vs tweeter) are from each other and the higher the XO frequency the more narrow the window that is free from lobing (dips in FR at XO freq).

The rule of thumb for ~3ft listening distance is take the speed of sound (inches ~13500 ips) the center to center of tweeter to mid (inches)= XO frequency or below. So the JBL at 13500/5(?)=2700 and the XO freq is 2.2k (below 2700 is better for closer listening...). Long story short it will have about the same lobe free window as any other speaker who's XO point is just below there and is fine for closer listening. Anecdotally I had LSR32's and had no measured XO lobing issues @~4'.
Man I don't know how but I missed this post last time I looked! Sounds like between what you and Jim say they should be fine at 4.5 feet then. Thanks a bunch for the more scientific info!


@Jim, no the speakers were not broken in at all. The store let me put a deposit down to try them out, and at the time I felt guilty giving them a run-in. In retrospect I should have, as I don't think anyone else was burning to purchase them anyway. For whatever reason there don't seem to be may people using the 32s/6332s, esp on this forum

FWIW, I ended up setting them upright on my meter bridge as well. Thought they sounded better than horizontal. As I said, the only issue I had with them was the lack of low end, but maybe it would have gotten significantly better after break-in. I also thought they sounded fine at the distance I was at (I'm used to sitting relatively close to midfield 3-ways), but since I couldn't do any mixing I second-guessed myself based on what others were saying.


@Ryan, you said you used to have 32s. Can I ask what you switched to?
Old 8th March 2014
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phillysoulman View Post
get a pair of JBL 6328ps and never look back
I love mine.....Ive had them ever since they came out
No sub needed and personally,that would be overkill
Thanks for the recommendation man. I already have a pair of 2-ways I like. Looking for 3-ways specifically
Old 8th March 2014
  #14
Gear Maniac
 

The subs are ported. Generally speaking, would it be better to use sealed speakers with ported subs? JBL says the 6332 is tuned to 33 Hz. If I crossed over at 85, that would pretty much eliminate the port from the equation, no?
Old 8th March 2014
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbridgman View Post
It is not that people are telling you get more treatment because your room treatment sucks or something, or that you don't know or have not treated your room... just that the LSR speakers are VERY, VERY, VERY dependant on the room dimensions, and bass treatment and placement is key with them.

As I mentioned I had a perfectly professionally treated room, and after bringing the LSR32s in my room for the first time in late 90s, I had to redo the treatment because of the low end interaction of the speakers, and when I moved in 2006, it was even worse for the guy who did my room treatment and tuning due to these speakers... Room placement of them was the key for them to work well in my room, then after that it was time to do some very heavy low end treatments... no subs needed in my room now for any other speaker I have brought in here, that is how well it needed to be treated for my LSR32s to work in here.

So don't get upset about people telling you about treatment, with these speakers it is way worse, and more important to re-treat/tune your room to them, to get the most out of them, they are monsters...

You really need to treat them the same as if you were going to put in UREI, Augspurger, etc. Big in wall mains.

Also they may just not work in your room, which happens, and why we try monitors in our rooms, but for a speaker that I really like, I will completely change out my treatment if I need to, and I will include that cost in my overhead for new monitors, just in case, then if not I can use it for other gear, or to reinvest in the business.

If you are going to look at other 3 ways.... try to find a used set of Barefoot mm27s... there are a couple pairs in the classifieds on here.... highly recommended. and they are meant to go in the nearfield position.

Jim
I hear what you're saying, but the thing is, in my room I got pretty much exactly the response that the specs say. They were ok down to about 50, but rolled off too much below that. Maybe my room is treated too well, lol!

I listened to the MM27s in a store under admittedly lame conditions, but I didn't care for them. They sounded weird to me, and they were way too bright.

I would go with the 310s or the SM9s, but I can't audition them in my room. Maybe they wouldn't have any room mode dips, but it would be a gamble. That's why I wanted to know which would work best with the subs, b/c I can get really even bass at the mix position with those in the equation. Plus neither go very loud without subs anyway
Old 8th March 2014
  #16
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jimbridgman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by KFunk View Post
I hear what you're saying, but the thing is, in my room I got pretty much exactly the response that the specs say. They were ok down to about 50, but rolled off too much below that. Maybe my room is treated too well, lol!

I listened to the MM27s in a store under admittedly lame conditions, but I didn't care for them. They sounded weird to me, and they were way too bright.

I would go with the 310s or the SM9s, but I can't audition them in my room. Maybe they wouldn't have any room mode dips, but it would be a gamble. That's why I wanted to know which would work best with the subs, b/c I can get really even bass at the mix position with those in the equation. Plus neither go very loud without subs anyway
Since you are going to use a sub no matter what why not look at something like the focal twin 6be with a sub. They are a 3 way technically, and lots of electronic producers like them, so do metal producers too.

I am very close to getting the Quested V3110s but the PSI A25ms are also really nice, just very different sound from each.

If you have the cash you may think about the quested as well. They sound bad azz to me. The PSI were very accurate. A pair of the smaller PSI and the bigger questeds would be the best combo for me, prolly what I end up with. I just really Love my Audix 1as for near field.

Jim
Old 8th March 2014
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbridgman View Post
Since you are going to use a sub no matter what why not look at something like the focal twin 6be with a sub. They are a 3 way technically, and lots of electronic producers like them, so do metal producers too.

I am very close to getting the Quested V3110s but the PSI A25ms are also really nice, just very different sound from each.

If you have the cash you may think about the quested as well. They sound bad azz to me. The PSI were very accurate. A pair of the smaller PSI and the bigger questeds would be the best combo for me, prolly what I end up with. I just really Love my Audix 1as for near field.

Jim
I guess I wouldn't say I'm definitely going to use subs. It's just that since I can't audition them in my room to determine how even the low end will be, I know I can get it even if I can integrate the subs--therefore, was wondering which would work best.

I was thinking it would be nice to have a full range nearfield for when I mix without clients around--which is most of the time. Then have the subs for clients and to do the occasional mix check at high volumes.

I auditioned the Quested v3110s at VintageKing in LA last week. In that room I thought they were a little thick/cloudy in the low-mids. Also, they didn't have as much sub info as I was expecting. But that was probably the room. Nice speakers though, and they go WAY louder than the SM9s or the 310s so would be good as midfields for sure.
Old 8th March 2014
  #18
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jimbridgman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by KFunk View Post
I guess I wouldn't say I'm definitely going to use subs. It's just that since I can't audition them in my room to determine how even the low end will be, I know I can get it even if I can integrate the subs--therefore, was wondering which would work best.

I was thinking it would be nice to have a full range nearfield for when I mix without clients around--which is most of the time. Then have the subs for clients and to do the occasional mix check at high volumes.

I auditioned the Quested v3110s at VintageKing in LA last week. In that room I thought they were a little thick/cloudy in the low-mids. Also, they didn't have as much sub info as I was expecting. But that was probably the room. Nice speakers though, and they go WAY louder than the SM9s or the 310s so would be good as midfields for sure.
Yeah you really need to hear monitors in your room that is key... I have listened to monitors in show rooms before that I thought were crap and when I got them in my room they were awesome.

The sm9s will probably be good for what you are doing I just never really liked the focal line in the studio... That being said I have a focal sub in my car. I would find a place that will let you audition them in your room, or give you a 30 day full money back return policy.

Jim
Old 9th March 2014
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbridgman View Post
Yeah you really need to hear monitors in your room that is key... I have listened to monitors in show rooms before that I thought were crap and when I got them in my room they were awesome.

The sm9s will probably be good for what you are doing I just never really liked the focal line in the studio... That being said I have a focal sub in my car. I would find a place that will let you audition them in your room, or give you a 30 day full money back return policy.

Jim

I talked to my dealer today and he said be might be able to get a pair of the Focals and/or the 310s through their reps for me to demo at my crib. I'll keep my fingers crossed. One positive is that my dealers prices are so good, I can probably sell whatever I get and break even, or pretty close. Otherwise I wouldn't even consider getting a pair of speakers so expensive without being able to try them out.
Old 9th March 2014
  #20
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666666's Avatar
I'll just chime in as another user and lover of the LSR6332. I agree with most of the above comments.

In my personal experience, I wouldn't use them any closer than about 6', but YMMV. I found the sweet spot for me at about 9'.

I do mostly rock, jazz etc (never edm), but I do still feel these need a sub. They make great low end in general, but indeed lack in the "sub lows".

I got a chance to hear some o310s at AES recently (with the matching Neumann sub)... general comment, the o310s are indeed more "clinical", much more revealing mid-range (almost "too much"). By comparison, the 6332s are surely more "natural" and musical, however some might say they're not as "revealing". To me the 6332s sound more like a speaker you might use for pleasure listening while the 310s come across more as an audio tool for revealing microscopic details. I'd say they're quite different and both have their place. I'm actually still considering a set of o410s (which to my understanding are quite related to the o310s, just bigger) to go along with my 6332s, to have the best of both worlds.

I heard the LSR6328Ps at AES as well and was very impressed (at least based on a limited audition under not so ideal conditions). They would seem to have the same type of pleasing, "natural", non-clinical vibe of the 6332s... but still clear and adequately revealing. I was listening to a piano piece on them at one point, sounded really nice, very honest and not overly hyped or overly "clinical". The Neumanns, by comparison, again, we're leaning a bit more on the side of being more "focused" and purely revealing at the expense of some "natural musicality".

Please note, take all opinions with a grain of salt, we all have unique interpretations and preferences. I grew up listening to old-school stereo systems of the late '70's that inherently used big three-way speakers, very much like the 6332s, so this is why my ear might tend to gravitate toward the 6332 vibe. But after hearing other assorted modern monitors, it would seem that a lot of them have a different, as I would call it, "modern vibe", super revealing, overly focused upper mids... more like audio "microscopes"... which of course could be considered a wonderful thing... but is this really how you want to listen to "music" all day long? Again, I suppose in a perfect world, you'd have a pair of each type to switch back and forth on.

And, oh yeah, the 6332s are surely sensitive to amplifier type. I stepped up to a Bryston from a big Hafler and noticed an immediate, obvious improvement in detail, dynamics, etc. It was a worthwhile improvement. The Brystons aren't cheap, but one will surely push your 6332 experience from being "great" to being "stellar". Another way to look at it, the 6332s are good enough to take advantage of a great amp like a Bryston. In general, my opinion is that a pair of 6332s on a Bryston (latest 4B version anyway) is one bad-ass system... especially if you add a properly tuned sub to it. I recently picked up the matching JBL sub, will soon install.

Old 9th March 2014
  #21
Lives for gear
 
MIKEHARRIS's Avatar
I believe the 410 to be pre Sennheiser (Neumann) and if the excellent 120's and 310's are anything to go by, a upgraded 410 would challenge some of the best. The 310 may be the "sweet spot" for this mid-dome design as when the drivers get bigger to increase output the distance from their centers increase...making it a more difficult execution.

Brystons are indeed both expensive & worth it. Usually seen is a improvement in low end depth and tightness...as well as top smoothness. We have even installed 4B's in live clubs for HF.
Old 9th March 2014
  #22
Gear Addict
 
Vilddyr's Avatar
SM9's are the clear winner among those monitors, and does NOT need a sub. To put a sub with a pair of SM9 is like pissing your pants, it's warm at first. Learn to balance your mixes correctly, on a well balanced system, it will serve you MUCH better in the long run. You can always buy am over overdimensioned cheap consumer sub+sat system to check things on.
Old 9th March 2014
  #23
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Brystons are indeed both expensive & worth it. Usually seen is a improvement in low end depth and tightness...as well as top smoothness. We have even installed 4B's in live clubs for HF.
I've hauled my current 3-ways to many studios in both Nashville and L.A., and used whatever house amp they had. Sometimes it was a Bryston, sometimes a Halfler, sometimes a Crown, sometimes an Ashly, etc. The Brystons sounded better than most others, but the difference was never very great. TBH the Crown Studio Reference pooped on the Bryston. Damping factor > 20,000, super-tight bass.... Anyway, for a while I was convinced I was going to get the 6332s for sure, until I got lost crawling up my own butt reading threads about people's opinions of which amp you HAD to use with them or they sucked, bi-wiring, passive bi-amping, etc etc. If I get them I would just use the amp I have for now. Maybe I would get a better amp someday, maybe not. Suffice it to say they sounded fine in my studio bi-wired with my current amp.

Quote:
general comment, the o310s are indeed more "clinical", much more revealing mid-range (almost "too much").
I hear you completely on preferring speakers that are more musical. The pair I have now are like that. But I'm actually going for something that's a little more zipped-up and clinical sounding. The 6332s are actually more clinical than my current pair :-) As far as detail in the mids, personally I'll take all I can get for the 3-ways. That's the biggest point of using them IMO. I also prefer soft dome tweets to metal, but I have three other sets with soft domes and a lot of speakers use metal ones now so I was kind of looking forward to having both types. I did a staff post job for a year and a half where we had Genelecs in all the rooms and got used to the way metal tweets sound, so my preference isn't nearly as strong anymore. I seem to be doing more and more mastering these days, and it really would be good to have both as a reference. That's one thing about the 310s I have to consider--they have soft domes and that's all I have already.


Quote:
SM9's are the clear winner among those monitors, and does NOT need a sub. To put a sub with a pair of SM9 is like pissing your pants, it's warm at first. Learn to balance your mixes correctly, on a well balanced system, it will serve you MUCH better in the long run. You can always buy am over overdimensioned cheap consumer sub+sat system to check things on.
I was only able to audition the SM9s at Vintage King in L.A. I don't have a complete opinion yet. When I was standing in that room, the bass response was uneven and not very good. Then when I sat down it was much better. By contrast the ADAM S3X-Hs had much more even bass wherever you were in the room--leading me to worry that the SM9s might have room mode issues in any reasonable location I can place them. Which I would be able to fix nicely with a sub--IF they would work well with one, and the only way I can see that not being messy is if the x-over freq is high enough to take the passive radiator out of play. But I have no idea at what freq it starts to resonate.

Also, the SM9s don't get loud enough for some of my clients (and me just barely, TBH), so the sub would presumably help with that.

Regarding the 310s, they only weigh 28 lbs., but the literature says they use class A/B amps. They must surely be crummy amps build-wise, no? By contrast, my 2-ways weigh 27 lbs., and the Focals weigh 77 lbs. with a huge heat sink for the amp (the Focals also use only class A/B amps). It's hard not to worry that the 310 is an extremely cheaply-constructed product, irrespective of how it sounds. What do you all think?
Old 9th March 2014
  #24
Gear Nut
 
Dr.fire.K's Avatar
First, i have to say that we have a purpose built controll room with amazing sound treatment and no frequency issues throughout. With that said, our SM9s have great low-end response. So much that i also think there would be a conflict with the subs if you still needed/wanted touse them.

[QUOTE=KFunk;9923715]Also, the SM9s don't get loud enough for some of my clients (and me just barely, TBH), so the sub would presumably help with that.

QUOTE]

Really? I'm honestly asking. They can output 116 dB at full-range. I've never even had them turned all the way up and i've hit the threshold of pain. (straigt from converters to a Dangerous Monitor ST - no other gain). I ask because and we had a Hip-hop producer visit once and he kept insisting we crank it to painful levels. How can your ears take that?

Anyways, i hope you can try them out at least. They are amazing monitors. Happy shopping,
Dr.fire.K
Old 9th March 2014
  #25
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr.fire.K View Post
First, i have to say that we have a purpose built controll room with amazing sound treatment and no frequency issues throughout. With that said, our SM9s have great low-end response. So much that i also think there would be a conflict with the subs if you still needed/wanted touse them.

Really? I'm honestly asking. They can output 116 dB at full-range. I've never even had them turned all the way up and i've hit the threshold of pain. (straigt from converters to a Dangerous Monitor ST - no other gain). I ask because and we had a Hip-hop producer visit once and he kept insisting we crank it to painful levels. How can your ears take that?

Anyways, i hope you can try them out at least. They are amazing monitors. Happy shopping,
Dr.fire.K
Hey,

I dunno what to tell you man. At Vintage King in LA, they barely went loud enough for me without clipping when I want to hear it loud. And from experience, they wouldn't go nearly loud enough for some clients.

The 116 spec must be measured in some other way than with full-range music. On another thread, even the Focal rep said "you won't be able to do 106 dB with unmastered material". At my studio, @ 4.5' I measured my tolerable threshold right at 100 dB with both of my sets of speakers. All I can tell you is that they didn't get that loud with mastered material in the VK listening room.
Old 6th April 2016
  #26
Lives for gear
 
rectifried's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by KFunk View Post
TBH the Crown Studio Reference pooped on the Bryston. Damping factor > 20,000, super-tight bass....
a super badass amp for sure
I have the esoteric version of the Crown Macro Reference [costs 4k$ back in the day]
And i have a bryston4b as well
So Im full of "north american" amps

More tight bass perhaps from the > 20,000 damping factor ?
I run ns10 and dmt 10 tannoy

Both amps are good..

Last edited by rectifried; 8th April 2016 at 02:23 AM..
Old 6th April 2016
  #27
Lives for gear
 
ddageek's Avatar
 

You really need to hear your choice in 3 way with the specific subs, but I'll say this Cheap subs sound cheap! decent bass drivers amps and crossovers don't come cheap.
The Neumann KH speakers mate really well with the Nuemann subs, but I would not hesitate to try subs such as the JL Audio or the best reasonably priced sub That I like are the New ones Brad lundys selling.
My favorite subs these days ? All custom Volt, Morel or TADs in vented boxes all sound a bit different but I like my bass big with very little distortion.
Bryston VS Crown Studio ref, well on my Quested 308's the Volts love the original 4B or MC2, every time we switched the Studio ref back in everybody thought we put a high pass in, it sounded like we lost an octave !
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