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Toneboosters releases Morphit - Headphone correction plug-in Studio Headphones
Old 23rd December 2016
  #31
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Just gave Morphit a bit of a whirl.

Comparing it to the SW's HD650's curve, although I don't have the SW's custom calibration, the Morphit version was considerably brighter, but, I do love the fact that you can reduce the overall effect using the Morphit percentage wheel ! Excellent ! I can easily bring back the brightness into a comfortable zone & comparable to my HR824's...which is a killer feature. Then, using the low end compensation handle, I bring up the low end to get that to match the HR824's...fantastic.

I think I like it !... a lot.
Old 23rd December 2016
  #32
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Putting in a plug for a Panasonic Ergofit profile. They're the highest-rated, best-selling earbuds on Amazon for a reason. I prefer them to far more expensive options (with the large size earpiece).
Old 23rd December 2016
  #33
An update to the plugin has been released which addresses some of the points made in the thread (e.g. gain control without limiter):

Morphit v1.1.0

Please note that this update may change behaviour of the plugin when retrieving existing projects that were saved with earlier versions of Morphit. Affected settings are (1) output gain, and (2) customization equalization curve. Please check settings carefully when updating!

- Several minor improvements in GUI design
- DSP engine is further optimized with a reduction of about 20% in CPU load
- Accuracy improvements for almost all headphone models, for both frequency and phase correction
- Gain function is now always available even if the limiter is disabled
- Custom mode is now equal to Simulate mode but with additional equalization option for response tweaking
- New included headphone models: AKG272, Beats Studio 2
- All headphone models are now properly listed in alphabetical order
- Customization Q factor range is increased to allow better fine tuning
Old 23rd December 2016
  #34
Quote:
Originally Posted by andycraig View Post
- Several minor improvements in GUI design
- DSP engine is further optimized with a reduction of about 20% in CPU load
- Accuracy improvements for almost all headphone models, for both frequency and phase correction
- Gain function is now always available even if the limiter is disabled
- Custom mode is now equal to Simulate mode but with additional equalization option for response tweaking
- New included headphone models: AKG272, Beats Studio 2
- All headphone models are now properly listed in alphabetical order
- Customization Q factor range is increased to allow better fine tuning
There seems to be one additional change that didn't appear in the changelog on the website:
- Generic studio reference is now the target function in the 'Correct' mode and is also the default in 'Simulate' mode

That might address some of the observations of accentuated high (and low) end since the previous target function in 'Correct' mode was Generic HiFi.
Old 23rd December 2016
  #35
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dione's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by andycraig View Post
An update to the plugin has been released which addresses some of the points made in the thread (e.g. gain control without limiter):

Morphit v1.1.0

Please note that this update may change behaviour of the plugin when retrieving existing projects that were saved with earlier versions of Morphit. Affected settings are (1) output gain, and (2) customization equalization curve. Please check settings carefully when updating!

- Several minor improvements in GUI design
- DSP engine is further optimized with a reduction of about 20% in CPU load
- Accuracy improvements for almost all headphone models, for both frequency and phase correction
- Gain function is now always available even if the limiter is disabled
- Custom mode is now equal to Simulate mode but with additional equalization option for response tweaking
- New included headphone models: AKG272, Beats Studio 2
- All headphone models are now properly listed in alphabetical order
- Customization Q factor range is increased to allow better fine tuning
Wow, that's fast
Old 23rd December 2016
  #36
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Benj's Avatar
I have been hesitant to send my Audeze LCD-2 Fazor headphone's into Sonarworks (which only has a generic curve for the non-Fazor version) and saw that they were included in Morphit. While it didn't sound wonderful out of the box, using the percentage dail and custom mode EQ, I was able to dail in a very nice response... much better than the original!

Would really love to have one more band in the custom mode. Is there a place to make feature requests with Toneboosters?
Old 24th December 2016
  #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkaitkai View Post
I'm not too fond of headphone calibration, mostly because I don't feel like I can trust it. Since the room is effectively removed from the equation when using headphones, you're typically hearing them the way they were intended to be heard, and with a solid pair of studio headphones, I'm not sure that flatter is necessarily better.
I don't know about "hearing them the way they were meant to be heard." If it were possible to make completely flat headphones, there would be 100's of them on the market. It's not currently possible, so the best solution for mixing is to use corrective EQ.

I understand using car speakers or earbuds to check your mix, but flatter is most certainly better wile mixing.
Old 24th December 2016
  #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Rose View Post
flatter us most certainly better wile mixing.
If this were the case, speakers like the NS-10s and Auratone 5Cs (or hell, even the KRK Rokits) would not be anywhere near as ubiquitous or as highly revered as they are. It's fine if you prefer flatter monitoring systems, but the assertion that "flatter is better" is demonstrably false.

Apart from this, even if you do manage to create a reasonably flat playback system via speaker/headphone calibration, frequency response is only one piece of the puzzle, and it is not necessarily the most important. If it were, everyone could simply use Reference 3 to simulate their speaker of choice and there would be no need to ever use the real thing thereafter.

My point about headphones being heard exactly as they were intended to be heard (i.e. free of room coloration) is largely contingent on the viewpoint that various studio headphones come stock with particular frequency responses for a good reason. Since there is no influence from the room, the only thing you're "correcting" for is what you believe to be an oversight or mistake on the part of the manufacturer.

Keep in mind that this is not an outright dismissal of headphone calibration — I absolutely think it's still useful, especially if all you have is a pair of headphones! Like I said, Morphit seems to be particularly exciting with low end headphones. If all you have is $50, grab a pair of HD201s, buy Morphit, and get to work.

I just don't think the rationale behind speaker calibration is equally applicable to the issue of mixing on headphones.
Old 24th December 2016
  #39
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Bouroki's Avatar
 

At the end of the day don't "force" it just because you think/read you should. If you don't prefer the correction to the stock sound (after giving it a chance) just dump it and move on. That's what I did with Sonarworks I really didn't like anything about it at all and moved on, but Morphit (especially the latest update) im absolutely loving it and believe i'll get better mixing results with it.
Old 25th December 2016
  #40
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I'm with you Bouroki. Didn't like sonorworks. I just demo'd morphit. Started a mix with it from scratch. Really digging it. I have Senn 650's. The correction curve made such a big difference for me. I'd mixed the song b4 so I didn't do a rough mix. Started from the kick and from the start through the entire mix, I could clearly hear the difference. Not trying to be over the top but at some point, I decided to push the stems and drive my tonelux otb16 and I really heard the color of this box like I've never heard b4 through headphones. Exported the mix and forgot to take morphit off the 2 bus. Listened in 2 cars and it sounded right. Kind of baffled me but doesn't matter. I'm sold. I have of Toneboosters plugs. Morphit is the shiznik.........
Old 25th December 2016
  #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkaitkai View Post
If this were the case, speakers like the NS-10s and Auratone 5Cs (or hell, even the KRK Rokits) would not be anywhere near as ubiquitous or as highly revered as they are. It's fine if you prefer flatter monitoring systems, but the assertion that "flatter is better" is demonstrably false.
I've mixed on NS10s for 15 years, so I understand the appeal. But for many years, mixing with flat response has been completely out of reach for all but the largest budget studios. You had to choose a color, and many chose ns10's. But if you have the option of mixing flat, you ought to.

If the choice is,
A: hear completely flat response, and know exactly what my mix sounds like
Or
B: trick myself by hearing unflattering speakers, forcing me to work harder

B is just a crutch. I want to hear exactly what I'm doing and have the skills to make it sound great without tricking myself.

I'm not downplaying the importance of checking your mix on different consumer devices. But if your mix is great on flat reference monitors or headphones, it will translate better in more real world situations than if you mix on ns10's.
Old 25th December 2016
  #42
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DrAudioBot's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Baron View Post
They have AudioTechnica ATH M50x, but I have ATH M50. It´s a pity
I have the M40x dammit
Old 26th December 2016
  #43
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tkaitkai's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Rose View Post
But if your mix is great on flat reference monitors or headphones, it will translate better in more real world situations than if you mix on ns10's.
The sheer number (read: thousands) of excellent-sounding, world class recordings and mixes made with the aid of NS-10s, Auratones, etc. would suggest otherwise. It's also interesting to note that a large segment of pro studios still opt to include these speakers in their monitoring setups in spite of having access to much costlier, flatter studio monitors.

To be clear, I am NOT suggesting that flatter speakers are less effective or categorically worse for music production — what I am arguing against is the assertion that they are categorically better. Given the information I've laid out in this post and the previous, this is clearly not the case. It's a matter of personal preference.

That said, I do think it's wise to have at least one relatively flat point of reference in your studio. My studio monitors serve this purpose, so I'm not as interested in calibrating my primary headphones — they serve an equally useful but different purpose. YMMV.

Last edited by tkaitkai; 26th December 2016 at 08:08 AM..
Old 26th December 2016
  #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkaitkai View Post
The sheer number (read: thousands) of excellent-sounding, world class recordings + mixes made with the aid of NS-10s, Auratones, etc. would suggest otherwise. It's also interesting to note that a large segment of pro studios still opt to include NS-10s in their monitoring setups in spite of having access to much more costly, flatter studio monitors.
I respect your opinion, and I don't intend to drag on the argument indefinitely, but I just want to say a few last things to clarify my position...

I think if guys like CLA had the option of perfectly flat response when they started out, they would have chosen that and stuck with it. But after mixing on NS10's for 25 years, of course he's not going to start changing things up now. And perhaps if he suddenly switched to something completely flat now, his mixes might end up worse.

I just think flat response ought to be considered more important than it is. People mix on AT-MX 50's and don't use Sonarworks because "it sounds weird." But those headphones are insanely colored. So much 7k, massive low mid scoops, thundering lows. You just can't make well informed decisions that way, no matter how right it feels to you. Turn on the corrective EQ, give your ears some time to adjust, and before long you'll find the original eq to be the weird one. Once your ears adjust you'll realize things sound smoother, more natural and less spiky.

I just don't buy the "it doesn't work for me" excuse. Forget about what feels right, because what feels right while your mixing will feel wrong in many listener environments, if you're mixing with an imbalanced spectrum. Mix flat and know what your mix really sounds like. Getting off NS-10's was extremely eye opening to me.
Old 26th December 2016
  #45
Gear Head
 

I've just tested Morphit 1.1.0 with my DT990 Pro and ATH-M50...

As I understand the purpose of this software, it should help both headphones to sound as flat as possible, aka "the same" - at least in the ballpark, right?

Because it doesn't - not even remotely close. With the plugin enabled in corrective mode using their respective profiles the ATH-M50 sounds piercing and lack low end while the DT990 have a very pleasant and warm sound. They're just worlds apart and none of the corrections sound flat to my ears.
Old 1st January 2017
  #46
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lsguru85's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by fripholm View Post
I've just tested Morphit 1.1.0 with my DT990 Pro and ATH-M50...

As I understand the purpose of this software, it should help both headphones to sound as flat as possible, aka "the same" - at least in the ballpark, right?

Because it doesn't - not even remotely close. With the plugin enabled in corrective mode using their respective profiles the ATH-M50 sounds piercing and lack low end while the DT990 have a very pleasant and warm sound. They're just worlds apart and none of the corrections sound flat to my ears.
It's surprising, but earpads can change the freq response of headphones.

I can tell you that my HD800 sounds quite different with worn earpads vs. fresh earpads I bought last year.

Maybe this is the case (assuming ToneBoosters correctly measured all their Morphit supported headphones with fresh earpads).
Old 2nd January 2017
  #47
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toyhouse's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lsguru85 View Post
It's surprising, but earpads can change the freq response of headphones.

I can tell you that my HD800 sounds quite different with worn earpads vs. fresh earpads I bought last year.

Maybe this is the case (assuming ToneBoosters correctly measured all their Morphit supported headphones with fresh earpads).
Funny you'd bring this up. I was just thinking about this topic as somewhere, there was a thread or article written on this very subject. I sure wish I could remember where it was. Maybe here? And yes, the difference is large. Simply pushing gently on the cups against one's ears can illustrate the difference. This should be a reminder, (I need to order a new set), to check our pads to see if they're in good shape or not.
Cheers.
Old 2nd January 2017
  #48
Im with M50s and testing against sonorworks which i think i trust more. morphit is good but not for me, glad there is another option out there though.
Old 2nd January 2017
  #49
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I was kind of intrigued until I saw it was OSX 10.9 and later. I have an old macbook I use for mobile recording that I thought might pair well with this, alas, I guess not.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkaitkai View Post
Man, this is just too cool.

With my MDR7506s, it changes the frequency response in a manner similar to Reference 3, but IMO, in a much more natural and transparent way.

In Sonarworks' defense, I haven't had my headphones custom calibrated, and I haven't played around much with different filter phase types. This is also just one set of headphones — I'm sure Reference 3 has some profiles that could knock any competition out of the water.
How old is your pair of MDR7506? Not all pairs are equal.

Sometime around 2007 Sony changed the design of the headphones. The ones prior to the change have a brighter sound to them. The 2007-present day headphones are "flatter" sounding.

I wonder which one Morphit works with? Guess I will find out!
Old 3rd January 2017
  #51
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doom64's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Rose View Post
I respect your opinion, and I don't intend to drag on the argument indefinitely, but I just want to say a few last things to clarify my position...

I think if guys like CLA had the option of perfectly flat response when they started out, they would have chosen that and stuck with it. But after mixing on NS10's for 25 years, of course he's not going to start changing things up now. And perhaps if he suddenly switched to something completely flat now, his mixes might end up worse.

I just think flat response ought to be considered more important than it is. People mix on AT-MX 50's and don't use Sonarworks because "it sounds weird." But those headphones are insanely colored. So much 7k, massive low mid scoops, thundering lows. You just can't make well informed decisions that way, no matter how right it feels to you. Turn on the corrective EQ, give your ears some time to adjust, and before long you'll find the original eq to be the weird one. Once your ears adjust you'll realize things sound smoother, more natural and less spiky.

I just don't buy the "it doesn't work for me" excuse. Forget about what feels right, because what feels right while your mixing will feel wrong in many listener environments, if you're mixing with an imbalanced spectrum. Mix flat and know what your mix really sounds like. Getting off NS-10's was extremely eye opening to me.
With Sonarworks' plugin, I am more likely to pick the average speaker preset over completely flat. My mixes tend to translate better using that profile. My guess? Yamaha NS-10's approximated the average consumer speaker during the 1970s/1980s. That and they highlight problems in mixes thanks to their mid-range bump! Your mileage may vary.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doom64 View Post
With Sonarworks' plugin, I am more likely to pick the average speaker preset over completely flat. My mixes tend to translate better using that profile. My guess? Yamaha NS-10's approximated the average consumer speaker during the 1970s/1980s. That and they highlight problems in mixes thanks to their mid-range bump! Your mileage may vary.
In my case it was the opposite, I found the NS-10 preset boxy and midrangey, I didn't like it. I went with the flat version, and loved the new sound
Old 3rd January 2017
  #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JulenJVM View Post
In my case it was the opposite, I found the NS-10 preset boxy and midrangey, I didn't like it. I went with the flat version, and loved the new sound
NS-10's are boxy and midrangey, so sounds like the plugin is doing its job!

They sounded nothing like 70's-80's stereo speakers. Speakers from that area tend to be quite flattering (I've owned lots). The whole NS-10 thing was that you HAD to nail the midrange on those honky, harsh speakers, so mixes tended to translate well. Also, there wasn't much competition in the near field market.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lobsterinn View Post
NS-10's are boxy and midrangey, so sounds like the plugin is doing its job!

They sounded nothing like 70's-80's stereo speakers. Speakers from that area tend to be quite flattering (I've owned lots). The whole NS-10 thing was that you HAD to nail the midrange on those honky, harsh speakers, so mixes tended to translate well. Also, there wasn't much competition in the near field market.
The good thing of the Sonarworks plugin is that you can switch profiles in a click, and have a quick check to see how the mix sounds on NS-10s. That way you don´t have to constantly fight your mix on NS-10 sound, but can flow with it instead, and check every now and then for midrange issues without having your ears bleed. You got to love digital audio....
Old 4th January 2017
  #55
Gear Addict
 

I just compared morphit to Sonarworks on my AT M50xs. I used some tracks I mixed and some commercial tracks for comparison. I spent about an hour, not only listening but also EQ matching and looking at analyzers.

Overall, the morphit preset is quite a bit brighter. It does not tame the 10k spike that the m50x's have as much as Sonarworks does. With morphit, 10k sound sharp and made things like hi-hats sound unnaturally bright. On the positive side, it tames the 700-1k range more than Sonarworks, and when listening to a half dozen mixes, I felt like that range sounded more correct with morphit. There were some other differences, but those were the most significant. I ended up using fabfilter pro-q to eq match them both so I could make a custom eq that was somewhere in between the two, taming the 10k of the morphit, but retaining the smoother mid range.

If you have to choose Sonarworks or morphit for your m50x's, I'd say the default morphit curve clearly sounds too sharp, and the Sonarworks curve is closer to flat. But morphit allows you to make eq adjustments. Just reduce a bit more of the 10k spike and you're close. I also added in a bit more sub range, as I felt morphit took out too much.

Verdict: Sonarworks and Morphit will both get you closer to a flat mixing experience and you should embrace that, whether it 'feels' right or not, because it is. Personally I prefer Sonarworks, but I only tested with AT-M50x's but I imagine each headphone curve has some variance in accuracy. Whatever you do, don't mix on headphones without one or the other.

Last edited by Josh Rose; 4th January 2017 at 03:22 AM..
Old 4th January 2017
  #56
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Did you try lowering the percentage of correction ?

On my SENN 650's , the 100% was not matching as well to my Mains [and other] Reference monitors.

I backed Morphit down to 76%, and the translation between phones and monitors were much better.
Old 4th January 2017
  #57
M2E
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkaitkai View Post
If this were the case, speakers like the NS-10s and Auratone 5Cs (or hell, even the KRK Rokits) would not be anywhere near as ubiquitous or as highly revered as they are. It's fine if you prefer flatter monitoring systems, but the assertion that "flatter is better" is demonstrably false.

Apart from this, even if you do manage to create a reasonably flat playback system via speaker/headphone calibration, frequency response is only one piece of the puzzle, and it is not necessarily the most important. If it were, everyone could simply use Reference 3 to simulate their speaker of choice and there would be no need to ever use the real thing thereafter.

My point about headphones being heard exactly as they were intended to be heard (i.e. free of room coloration) is largely contingent on the viewpoint that various studio headphones come stock with particular frequency responses for a good reason. Since there is no influence from the room, the only thing you're "correcting" for is what you believe to be an oversight or mistake on the part of the manufacturer.

Keep in mind that this is not an outright dismissal of headphone calibration — I absolutely think it's still useful, especially if all you have is a pair of headphones! Like I said, Morphit seems to be particularly exciting with low end headphones. If all you have is $50, grab a pair of HD201s, buy Morphit, and get to work.

I just don't think the rationale behind speaker calibration is equally applicable to the issue of mixing on headphones.
I have to disagree here.
Why do you think studio's back in the day spent millions on a flat as possible sounding room?
So, when you took your mix to the car, you were hearing exactly what you were hearing.
Studio's have spent millions on trying to get their rooms as flat as possible by using every method in the book to control lowend, high end and so on.
It is very important that you start off with flat sounding speakers/headphones.
That gives you the ability to take your mix anywhere and it should sound great. That's why you do it.

Remember, all speakers freq ranges are based off of a flat range.

I love Sonarworks but, I'm try this too.
I just bought the mic to Sonarworks as well for my speaker system.

Sonarworks headphone software get's within -3% to +3%.
How close does Toneboosters get to a flat sound?

Marc
Old 4th January 2017
  #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RJHollins View Post
Did you try lowering the percentage of correction ?

On my SENN 650's , the 100% was not matching as well to my Mains [and other] Reference monitors.

I backed Morphit down to 76%, and the translation between phones and monitors were much better.
Yes I did. But the problem with the m50x preset is that it doesn't remove enough 10k...it's not actually adding any. The headphones are just too bright to begin with, so backing off the effect gives you even more 10k. It does add top end at other frequencies, however, so it might sound less bright overall if you back off the effect. But you're gonna have too much 10k unless you push it past 100%, at which point the rest of the curve is gonna sound pretty bad.
Old 4th January 2017
  #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doom64 View Post
With Sonarworks' plugin, I am more likely to pick the average speaker preset over completely flat. My mixes tend to translate better using that profile. My guess? Yamaha NS-10's approximated the average consumer speaker during the 1970s/1980s. That and they highlight problems in mixes thanks to their mid-range bump! Your mileage may vary.
Whatever works for you man. Just consider that you're either tricking yourself into scooping more mids, or the other systems you are listening on happen to have a similar sound to NS10's. If you scoop out a bunch of 1k since your mixing on NS10's, it might sound REALLY scooped if you put on some BEATS BY DRE for example.
Old 4th January 2017
  #60
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@M2E

This point has already been addressed. Please see my response in post #43 , particularly this snippet:

Quote:
To be clear, I am NOT suggesting that flatter speakers are less effective or categorically worse for music production — what I am arguing against is the assertion that they are categorically better. Given the information I've laid out in this post and the previous, this is clearly not the case. It's a matter of personal preference.
Further, I believe you've inadvertently answered your own question here:

Quote:
Originally Posted by M2E View Post
Why do you think studio's back in the day spent millions on a flat as possible sounding room?

...

Studio's have spent millions on trying to get their rooms as flat as possible
The answer is exactly that: studio professionals go to great lengths to flatten out their rooms, NOT their speakers. This is done in order to reduce the influence of their rooms upon the sound coming out of their speakers. Of course, many do go on to use very flat monitors in these very flat rooms, which, as I've now stated multiple times, is a perfectly respectable choice.

But this does not explain why dozens of well-known and highly regarded engineers opt to reference on wildly inaccurate monitors (i.e. NS-10s) in their own extensively-treated rooms. I think there's a little more to it than merely being familiar with their speakers.

Again, just for clarity — I AM NOT arguing that NS-10s or Auratones are superior to flatter monitors. I am simply pointing out that they are proven and reliable tools in the pursuit of world-class recordings and mixes.

Last edited by tkaitkai; 4th January 2017 at 07:57 AM..
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