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Focal Solo6 Be

Focal Solo6 Be

4.5 4.5 out of 5, based on 2 Reviews

Beautiful near field Studio Monitors with excellent translation! Utilizing Beryllium tweeters and composite cones.


25th December 2011

Focal Solo6 Be by BioMichanical

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 5 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.25
Focal Solo6 Be

When opening the box, the first thing you notice is just how beautiful these are. One thing that does impress clients is good looking gear, which inspires them to perform their best and these monitors have that WoW look. They just look expensive! The cherry red dark finish with the composite cone and black front panel, give these an elegant look that you will always enjoy every time you walk into your control room.

When I first heard these, they were not broken in, which gave them sort of a strange sound. We were told that they were take about 48-72 hours of break in time before they begin to sound right. After letting music play through them over 2 nights and 2 days, we began to hear them sound better. It really took about 2 weeks before they were fully broken in, of being used daily in the studio before they were completely broken in. Once break in period was over, all I can say is WOW! The Solo6 be's really sound amazing. The upper midrange and lower mid range has definition that will help you make mixing decisions. The most important thing I can say about these monitors is translation. It's really difficult getting to know monitors and how well they translate. Usually you have to take your mix and play it back on several different speakers to really get a feel of how well they translate. Not true with these focals. Take your mix into the car, take your mix and play it back on small computer speakers, your going to get the same response every time, depending on the quality of speakers you play your mix back on then the consumer speakers obviously will not have as great detail, especially in the upper mids and highs, but it will sound similar as it did in the studio. Too many times have I heard clients say they went to other studios and their mix sounded great in the studio, but the moment they took it out thier car, or iPod, the mix didn't sound as good and everything just fell apart. Not the case with these!

The lower mids and bass is there, and for as small as these speakers are, they really do put out an amazing amount of bass. However, they aren't subwoofers so if you need to really hear the low end, add a subwoofer, but have the ability to turn the sub off and on during mixdown. These also get pretty loud so watch your levels. I've mixed anything from soft worship music to punk rock, to hard core metal and every time I can get a mix that sounds great and translates extremely well. I have worked on Adam A7's and Tapco monitors, and also listened Dynaudio BM6's (the first gen models) and none of them are as good as these in terms of translation. I gave them only a 9 on bang for buck because they are a bit pricey especially for a home studio, but they are worth EVERY penny!

Last edited by BioMichanical; 25th December 2011 at 06:38 AM.. Reason: Added url.

26th March 2012

Focal Solo6 Be by tone_rekooda

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 5 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.25
Focal Solo6 Be

Hey friends of the review section!

Now its time for a review about my newest love in the studio, the Focal Solo 6 BE

Finally we managed to get this awesome monitors! It had been a long struggle. At first we were mixing on KRK RP5 RoKit G2 but soon realized how crappy they are. A good friend has borrowed us his nice Klein & Hummel O110 and this used to be an eyeopener for us : Never ever mixing on those KRKs again! So in this review I am not just talking about how sexy the Solo`s look is. I am telling you the differences of several monitors like RoKit 5 and O110 too - based on my own (individual) experiences.

Look
I don`t buy anything because I like how it is looking. I have two FMR compressors in the studio and let`s be honest, they are looking awful
But for me that Focal Solo 6 are amongst the most beautiful monitors out there! Wood on the sides, that strange looking bass membran and also the back is sexy to me. Oh my gosh, you have to hear while mixing and not staring at those beauties.

The KRKs look is something you can like or not, I didn`t like the yellow so much but overall I thought they were well looking. The Klein & Hummel just look analytical and cool, nothing more and nothing really exciting.

Build Quality

I think they are very well built! At least I didn`t find a screw standing out of the speaker or whatelse.

Soundquality - Introduction

I`ve read a lot about the burn in phase and how important that is. The manual tells you at least 20hours on moderate level with "bass-heavy" material. At first they sounded really harsh in the highs, no big bass and mids ok. My reference album was Typo Negativ`s "At least the worst". On some words the sibilants of Peter Steele`s singing sounded really nasty.

After some hours I realized that the highs didn`t sound that harsh anymore and the bass is coming up. Some hours later (I think about 30hours before the first mixdown) Typo`s "At least the worst" sounded more or less the way I was used to hear it. I say "more or less" because I was stunned how awesome it sounded on the Focal Solo 6! I was hearing things I`ve never heard before, e.g. the kids or babies on that Black Sabbath Tribute Song. I got goosebumbs when I heard Peter`s voice on the Solos for the first time!
I soon realized that there is too much reverb on Peter`s voice on some songparts. I never realized how the reverb is sounding per se.
But it didn`t sound like there should be anything done, it sounded enjoyable. Enjoyable but also VERY VERY analytical!

Awesome, I was in love.

Sound Quality - In Particular

Stereo Image

Amazing! The best stereo image I`ve ever heard. On one mix one side (I guess it was the left side) was a little bit louder than the other one. You heard immediately that the voice is about 10cm away from the center. Fixed it in a heartbeat.
Creating beats for my electronic music is almost divine now! I can place sounds anywhere in the panorama and always know and formally SEE where it is and what`s left or right and how much space I have to the other sounds. Never heard or better SEEN such a accuracy in a stereo image.

I think it`s way better than on the Klein & Hummel. I have to say every mix I made on the Klein & Hummel translated very well and i enjoyed mixing on them. But the Solos are offering way more details in stereo imaging than the K&H. To be honest : I always struggled while locating sounds in the panorama on the K&H ...

Spaces

Again stunning! I`ll tell you this time at the beginning : I prefer the Solos Space imaging over the K&H.

Like I said with Peter`s voice. Reverbs and their spaces are very easy to locate and to place, it`s a breeze!

On the KRK RP5 I tended to use too much reverb on everything. On the Focals it`s just perfect, not too much and not to less.

For me as an electronic (minimal/techno) producer it`s so much fun places all that weird verbs now!

Frequency Spectrum

Some guys are saying the Solos are sounding just like Hifi and hyping the mids or whatelse. I didn`t realize that as soon as I can say.

I do a lot less eqing and compressing on them. Depending on the EQ I can hear about 1/2 or 1/3 dB steps!! Oh mates, how I love those monitors.

You can hear bass very accurate even without a sub and more : you can feel the bass in your solar plexus. When you are hungry and you feel the bass there you won`t feel very comfortable anymore...
Mixing bass is big fun now! Finetuning bass and bass drum / kick or leveling bassy materials now is again a breeze.
The highs are sounding very nice and a little bit silky I think. Maybe a little bit too silky... I don`t know exactly at the moment, but nevertheless, mixing the highs is pretty easy too.
The mids are sounding very detailed. On the KRK Rokit 5 everything sounds as a big blurred sauce, on the Solos everything is good hearable and you know pretty fast what to do to get the best result.

Transient Response

Also awesome! Compressing drums or processing them however is just another league now. Didn`t know that it can be that audible when working on better monitors. The term "pristine" describes their accuracy the best.

Conclusion

The Focal Solo 6 are the most expensive monitors I have worked with so far. And they are the best too! I prefer them over the Klein & Hummel O110 in nearly every aspect.
If you are in the game for buying new monitors I definitely suggest you to get your hands on that monitors and do a test-listening. When your ears are similar to mine you are going to be in love for sure

 
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