This is a budget priced nearfield monitor from KRK. It features a 5" woofer, dome tweeter in a waveguide, and 45 watts of power. It has been produced in various generations - square cabinet, rounded cabinet, grey cabinet, yellow cabinet, yellow woofer, grey woofer but they all sound pretty similar. When I first got mine I thought they were a decent value for my limited budget, but the longer I lived with them the less I thought of them.
At first listen and with nothing else to compare to they sound pretty good, especially if it's been awhile since you spent any time listening to really good monitors. At first, non-critical listen the low end seems somewhat impressive for such a small speaker. As you live with the speaker it becomes increasingly obvious that this is because the speaker has a hyped response curve with a big unnatural bump in the mid-bass. That can make it pretty difficult to accurately judge your low end. It also contributes to a general smeariness of the sound and lack of detail - you really can't "hear into the mix" very well. The sound stage lacks focus. I've seen some people attribute these problems to the ported enclosure design but that's not true. My current monitors are also ported but have none of these problems. I've also used far more expensive monitors that are ported. The use of a port isn't the problem. However the specific port design might be.
Now don't get me wrong - there are definitely much worse speakers being passed off as monitors, but for what you can get for only a little more money (or even the same money if you look carefully) they're just not that great.
Balanced XLR and 1/4" inputs, unbalanced RCA (on latest version.. Volume control. Power switch. 5" woofer, 1" tweeter. LF power 30W, HF power 15 W. Class AB. Tweeter level switch. max SPL 106 dB. Rated response 52Hz-20Hz, no plus/minus spec given (!). Power indicator.
If you can't get anything better they'll work - it is possible to mix on these speakers. But they make it harder than it should be and you have to constantly be aware of their quirks, which distracts from the task.
Just to get a bit of background, I am studying Audio and Music Technology at University.
I have had the opportunity to use several sets of monitor speakers, and so far the only ones that I have found to be better than the KRK Rokit range are the stupidly expensive monitors (who's name eludes me at this moment).
On the back of the monitor you will find a balanced XLR and TRS inputs, but you also have the option of an unbalanced RCA connection, there are also dials to adjust the System volume for each monitor and a HF adjustment.
Frequency Response for the RP5 is 52Hz to 20kHz with a +/- of 2.0 dB.
So straight away you have a small monitoring system with almost all the bass you need, possibly due to the brilliantly designed front firing bass port and the curved front baffle. This reduces diffraction giving enhanced monitoring clarity!
I have tried to compare similar sized and spec monitors, top which I have found around 2 others.
The Genelec 6010A, which falls short on both the high end and the low making me question the extra £40 per unit, and the Yamaha HS50M (and the HS80m) but the 50's again fell short on the bottom end, it was only when comparing the 80's that they seemed to have caught up with the Rokit 5's.
So in conclusion the KRK Rokit 5's have beaten all of the similarly sized, priced, specced monitors!
Go Rokit power
*please note I would advise actually trying out any set of monitor speakers before you buy, as I did and I was blown away by the sheer difference in quality!
The RP5s deliver plenty of punch and great clarity, I also like their tight, warm bass response. They look good as well, and are completely silent when in standby. For so small a monitor, they still play loud and clear. Adding a subwoofer gives them a lot of more punch but I don't personally see a need for that. A great active speaker.
At my university we have about 10 of these KRK 5" speakers that are typically used as mobile personal monitoring setups for amplified acoustic instrumental performances, or for mobile surround-sound (5 to 8 channel) electronic music or sound art installations. For their price and size, they're fairly decent monitors, and they're quite light as well. I haven't found them to be particularly reliable, as 2 have died within 2 years. (speaking of which, I wish they had a reliability tab under ratings!) If they were fixed-installed, I think they'd perhaps be more reliable; I will say that unlike many other small powered monitors these don't seem to overheat.
Regarding sound, yes they do produce some frequencies below 100, but I would not count on anything in the bass range being remotely close to accurate due to the porting design. I actually wish that the monitors had less hyped fake-bass; while it's ok for the sort of mobile live stage rigs that I've been using these monitors for, it's not ok for any sort of critical listening situation: tracking, mixing, editing, etc. It's not in the same price range, but I much prefer working with Genelec 8030s or Focal CMS series monitors when I need small nearfields for recording production work. The mids and highs are smoother on such monitors, I've found. But, in the price range of the KRKs, I haven't found anything to match them yet.
Last edited by oudplayer; 22nd December 2011 at 04:21 AM..
Reason: adding title
Good... With the price taken into consideration I must say. As some have pointed out, there is a slight lack of clarity/definition in the mid range, and perhaps a slightly fizzy high end. And I certainly don't trust them for any low frequency information (adding a sub, and configuring it correctly helps in this aspect however). After using these monitors for more than a year now, I can say that I am able to confidently create mixes that translate very well. Of course, having a well treated room, and lots of practice helps with this. I don't find these speakers to be "hyped" to the point of being unusable.
Ease of use:
Simple. Plug them in, turn them on. Adjust the knobs at the back if you need to.
The gain knob is handy, as is the high frequency adjust. A range of input options, although I've only ever used the XLR inputs.
Bang for buck:
Out of everything I tried (both in the shop/in the studio) the RP5's were defiantly the best in "budget" price range.
Also, after more than a year of use for a few hours nearly everyday there hasn't been a single issue, and the build quality seems very high. I love the portability as well, as I often find myself doing remote recordings, and it's great to be able to bring a pair of small active monitors along that I can trust.
I would recommend RP5's to anyone wanting some "entry level" monitors.
I'm possibly in the minority,I love my KRK G2 5"Rokit's
To start with these are "Near Field",and being such,they show their worst colours if pushed too hard.Yet for the size,they can be incredibly loud without losing detail,or producing noticable distortion[to a point!].
They are at their best when being used as....you guessed it "Near Field",and when I use mine,I treat them like 3 foot out Headphones,and as such I don't have them up too loud.
In this setting,I find them excellent,with a nice evenness that on my rig,immediately show up the shortcomings of albums I previously thought were good[but not great],and to me that shows a lack of color,so much so that if I listen to a record I previously thought was faultless,it's immediately evident that,I was right,and THAT record sounds great,over the one's[album's] that have had their shortcomings exposed.
If there is a criticism, it would be the often mentioned overly portly low mid,however this is something I find is exposed when they're turned up beyond their intended range.
Placing foam within the ports can alleviate much of the boominess[although I wouldnt call it that....for want of a better description]and I used the styrene that that they were excellently packed in,and trimmed it to shape.[mine came from the US,so I can vouch for the sturdiness of both the packaging,the monitors themselves,and the foam.
The worldwide voltage selection is also a big plus, if you don't live in their largest intended market,especially when so much gear must be bought country specific,or a step transformer must be used.[I had to buy such a transformer to use the Boss DR880 drum machine AND the Tascam 2488neo I bought with the KRK's,so I especially appreciated the 250/240/120 voltage selection]
I also appreciated the solid construction when accidentally dropping one on the step transformer[denting it severely] without even a scratch on the semi weighty monitor.
Another plus is the 3 way plug selection-xlr/trs-balanced, rca unbalanced,and top end control,as well as an effective volume control with notched steps for easy balanced dialing in.
In a small space anywhere in the world,you can't go wrong.
This is my first an only pair of monitors at home. I have mixed on NS10s, larger KRKs, Genelecs, and Adam ribbons. The thing I've noticed: the room is far more important that the speakers. Also, having a good 1/3 octave EQ in front of any monitors and a RTA to show you your boosts and cuts is pretty critical. That being said, the mid-lows can be a bit hot. Tame 'em with your EQ. If you don't have the hardware, use your DAW's parametric EQ to do it.
Honestly I don't trust any first mix anyway. My room (and most of the rooms I get to use) is far from ideal. These monitors are intended to be cost effective, not perfectly true. But here's the deal, spend your money wisely. Treating you listening position is far more important than the flatness of your monitors.
It probably is true that you can get "better" monitors for the price, but chances are if you're looking to spend less than $500 a speaker, you're new to this and it won't matter anyway.
Treat your space. Get some monitors. Listen to music (from CDs! not mp3s) that you know very well. Use a RTA and some sweeps. After a while you'll learn you speakers.
Would I rather have something else? Sure. Would it matter in my room? I doubt it. As far as monitors are concerned get what you can afford. If this is what you can afford you'll be ok!
I´ve read a lot reviews about the KRK RP5 RoKit G2 and most of them telling you that you hardly can`t go wrong with this little monitors. Well, my review goes straight into the other direction.
I think they are well built, I didn`t find anything to complain about.
Sound Quality - Introduction
Now it`s getting interesting...
My first two pairs of monitors were M-Audio BX5a and later Event TR6. So I thought updating with the Rokits must be an improvement. I just have heard the Rokit 8 before and liked the bass response so I thought due to this experience and all that raving reviews about the Rokit 5 I can`t go wrong with the Rokit 5.
When I first installed them and started listening music and getting them to know I preferred the sound over the Event TR6` sound. The Rokit 5 sounded less harsh in the highs and bass sounded more honest to me.
So I did some mixes on them. I am electronic music producer myself since several years and know how it should sound and what to do in certain cases. I was pretty pleased with the results although the mixes sounded a little bit thin and dark on other monitor systems and especially the mids were underrepresentated. On the Rokit 5 the mixes sounded like the best thing ever done on earth.
Then I mixed my first Metal/Rock Projects on them. It sounded as usual very nice on the Rokit 5. Strange I thought because I am new to mixing this sort of music. When I referenced these mixes on other monitor system I nearly shited my pants because it sounded THAT awful.
I did some tests with well known songs and material and realized that the Rokit 5 are boosting the lows pretty much and especially the mids. Also the highs were always mixed too harsh on them ...
A friend has borrowed me his Klein & Hummel O110 for some weeks and I re-did all mixes on them. Awesome how well they translated and how different the Metal/Rock mixes sounded against the ones I did on the Rokit 5. That was the point when I realized I just don`t wanna mix on that KRKs anymore because they are lying to me big times.
Sound Quality - In Particular
You can`t really locate a sound in the stereo image. I didn`t have the feeling that anything was centered on this monitors, it was something like a sound-cloud where every instrument was blurred so it sounded nice but not detailed or accurate.
The same as stereo image, literally not judge-able. My electronic music consits of a lot of reverbs which make the athmosphere. I always had to guess and adjust the verbs by knowledge and not by ear. On our bad sounding Yamaha PA in the rehearsal room the reverbs and its spaces sounded better than on the Rokit 5.
That`s the biggest fault in my eyes. They aren`t detailed, they lie to you and tell you that your mids are just right and they sound perfect but in reality your mids aren`t here or at least anywhere else.
Mixing bass was, like mixing reverbs, always a guessing game. I hardly mixed a bass right in terms of volume.
Eqing on the Rokit 5 is another guessing game. You have to boost or cut so much to hear a result ...
Some Gossip as a Sidenote
The friend with the Klein & Hummel did a monitor A/B Session at his university (He is studying Electrotechnology/Soundengineer). For A/Bing they had his K&H, Genelecs, Adams, PSI Audio, KRK Rokit 5 and some others. The people had let`s say 20mins to listen to every monitor pair so they can judge them at the end. Most of the people were not audio technicians, they rather were music listeners. Guess what? The KRK RP5 G2 were under the best monitors because everything sounded so nice on them.
I know it sounds a little bit like "Bobo" telling you this because not everybody has a lot of money for good monitors but I am telling you anyway : it`s better to save some money and buy something different. I`d say it`s better to work with a midpriced AKG headphone than throwing your money out of the money.
If I had to look for monitors in this pricerange nowadays I´d rather save some more extra bucks and buy at least Yamaha HS80. To me and my ears they are sounding a lot more honestly than KRK RP5 RoKit G2
You get what you pay for but know what you're after.
While I agree on many points above, there are some things that could be clarified.
Stereo imaging is as much about placement as it is about the monitors.
While the bass may be an issue with these monitors I find that it's more a lack of bass altogether and it's not for a lack of absorption in my room nor an excess of it. I find myself struggling to hear anything below 80 Hz which is to be expected really but the first week I had these I found myself adding a lot of bass to compensate only to find that it was way too much on any other speakers or headphones for that matter. A subwoofer would help.....maybe. Generally, watch that bottom end. This is one case where an RTA really can help.
Clarity is an issue. I think it has more to do with a lack of power than anything. This is where nominal output really makes a difference. If you push these puppies too hard they start to get muddy. It's a matter of distortion. The speakers are underpowered.
For a very small room with good absorption these would be fine. They're a little too small for my space.
They are a decent monitor but don't rely on them as your only reference. Not that I ever do but make sure you compare. I've been able to make decent mixes with these monitors. It's just a matter of careful and comparative listening.
I started with this monitor with not much intel about mixing but only beatmaking. The genres i listenend to with these monitors are Hip-Hop,soul and R&B.
The speakers blew me away the first time i used it because i used to work with cheapo desktop speakers. Later on i've heard better set-ups but they still sound very well.
I mixed a lot on this set and u can work pretty well with them, reminding that they cost not as much as a high end set-up.
The low-end is a bit overdone but once u get to know the speakers u can work around that. The imaging is done very well minding its a nearfield monitor and speaker placement is a big deal.
I've used them in 3 different rooms with no treatment at all. But they tend to sound good in all the different rooms.
As a starting beatmaker/engineer i would recommend this as u get a lot of bang for your buck.
Last edited by Modye; 6th August 2012 at 11:25 PM..
Reason: type faults
I have a pair of krk rokits and I have to say that no matter where I have used them (a real pro studio, living room, bedroom), they do not accurately represent what really sounds good across the board. If I mix so that it sounds perfect, i get too much low end and way too much midrange in my car and home stereo. I can't honestly say these are good monitors.
I got the "old" ones which design was more rectangular. Whats nice about them they are 7-8 year old now, Im 3rd or 4th owner of them and they're still kicking ass and they didnt had a calm life ;-) I worked few years on them and did some good and even very good mixes/masterings but they're not really trustfull boxes. U need to compare a lot with other recordings to be absolutely sure about quality of ur work. Though, for money, especially 2nd hand stuff is really great. I bought them (a pair) for 200$ and I think its really hard to find anything that is such well designed for this money. They're really good for small studios, as a desktop speakers and even as "HIFI" speakers. They dont sound that flat so u cant stand listening to the music on them ;-) And whats funny they're like +/-2dB in most of their frequency response when u measure them. I especially advise them to producers, DJs, remixers etc. There is something weird about 100-120Hz, some harmonics distortion or whatever, but its not that important(I bet your room is complete disaster in this frequency band if you know what i mean ;-P ;-) ) and can be fixed with a sub(u can find 2nd hand RP10 for like 200-250$ too sometimes :-) ). To sum up, good stereo scene, nice highs, mid is not that bad, and the bass get low but you can feel that its more like electronics equalisation than the real power from the woofer ;-) Big plus for a lot of connectors (RCA, XLR, Jack). I think they kick asses of most monitors in their price range but as always... Get a pair, put them in ur room and check if u like them. And..... I just like KRK's yellow woofers ;-);-);-)
I have had these speakers for about 3 years now, they are great for the price range and a very well built i have no problems to report. Anyone who complains about their mixes sounding different in other speakers dont understand the concept of mixing. Besides room setups and distance issues, you have to adapt to your monitors, the monitors dont adapt to you. I used to mix on computer speakers and would listen to mixes on other systems. You listen, you decide what needs to be adjusted and go back to the drawing board and adjust it. Mixing rarely comes out perfect in the first version on any speakers you use. Usually by 3-4 version my mix feels complete.
First I want to start off by saying I produce hip hop beatz and wanted monitors for mixing tracks, since I have a feeling the negative comments about the KRK rokit series is from people who don't produce that style of music.
There sound is excellent and the bass port in the front is great since I get a more accurate sound then if the bass was coming out of a back port and hitting off walls before getting to my ears. If you are in a small to medium size bedroom. I find the bass is great, gives a nice kick!!
EASE OF USE-
Vary simple, plug in and you're good to go!
They have everything you need. All 3 types of connection's to fit any set up you have in your home studio. HF adjustment from -2db to +2db.
They don't need a LF adjustment since you can place these right up to a wall witch 99% of home studio buyers will have to do because of lack of space without there being an over exaggerated bass.
BANG FOR BUCK-
Does not matter what I buy I always wish it was a little cheaper but these are in the same price range as other similar style monitors. Plus it's from a well respected company who only make studio monitors. I am from Canada so pricing may be different but I got them brand new with 4 Primacoustic pads to go in between the monitors and desk for $440.oo (Each Rokit 5 G2 was 178.99)