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Best Selling Studio Monitors Studio Monitors
Old 6th March 2017
  #1
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Best Selling Studio Monitors

So I found this article and just sharing it here in case there are people like me who's interested to know which studio monitors people are buying. What the best selling studio monitors are probably don't matter as much to pros, but I think beginners may find this article helpful. User favorites like the Rokit 5 speakers and the JBL LSR 305 are on the list, as well as a few speakers I barely or never see online--which actually is what's interesting to me. Never heard of them yet there are probably hundreds or even thousands out there buying them. Anyway you can click here to see the article.
Old 15th March 2017
  #2
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Hey, thanks for the link. I was surprised to see quite a few best selling speakers are ones that I haven't heard of. An amazon thing? I guess people must like them cause they're cheap.

Also, was interesting to see the only "expensive" speakers on the list are the Yamahas that were more than double the price of most others on the list.

When I clicked on the Amazon link (here) the list is a little different to the one in the article. I guess their sales numbers must jump around alot.

It's bad that people are calling those cheap Mackies Studio monitors... giving studio monitors a bad name!
Old 15th March 2017
  #3
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I suspect from the info on the web that the Yamaha HS series sells the most, without anything even close. (I have contributed to this - I own four pair of them plus the sub).
Old 16th March 2017
  #4
I own a set of the JBL's.. Great speakers for the money.
Old 16th March 2017
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teashea View Post
I suspect from the info on the web that the Yamaha HS series sells the most, without anything even close. (I have contributed to this - I own four pair of them plus the sub).
Wow, you must really like your Yamahas! Why so many, and which models (5s, 7s, 8s etc)? Would you recommend them?
Old 16th March 2017
  #6
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It goes without saying that "Best Selling" doesn't have much to do with best quality, best sounding, best stereo image, flattest, etc. As an analyst I never trust the numbers of retailors because they can be skewed in so many different ways. Then there is marketing. As an example, Bose spends more money on marketing than they do on R&D. People think they are great speakers because Bose tells them that they are.

The best advice I can give is set a price point. Start researching monitors at that price point. Actually listen to the speakers, preferably in your own room with your own recordings. Then make the decision. The folks at Amazon are not recording engineers. They are in the business of selling things in quantity. If they have an over supply of certain items throughout their distribution network, they will play with the numbers to make it appear that certain items are selling better than others.

Use your ears, not marketing ploys to make your decisions. For what it's worth, the monitors listed on that link are pretty low-end and do not begin to compare to the mid-level and high-end stuff. I know because i have been there. They are good for starting out, but as your ears learn what to listen for to get bettor results, these low-end speakers simply do not offer the detail needed to really dig in and make those critical tweaks that help mixes translate to various playback systems.

That being said, this thread should probably be moved over to the Low End Theory section.
Old 17th March 2017
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by map1511 View Post
Wow, you must really like your Yamahas! Why so many, and which models (5s, 7s, 8s etc)? Would you recommend them?
Yes I do. BTW I just saw a video yesterday of the CEO of Moog, and the monitors he uses are HS8's.

Anyway to answer your question ---- I have one pair of HS7's, three pair of HS5's and an HS8s subwoofer. All in the same room - I have five separate music production stations, where I do different things and I don't want to have to switch connections, so ...............

Tom
Old 17th March 2017
  #8
I was interested to see if the new IK iLoud Micro Monitors were on the list (they were), since I read someone gushing about them, was naturally skeptical but then read the marketing materials and performance specs (they're one of the few speaker makers who provide bounded frequency specs and for relatively tiny speakers, those specs strike me as very good). Frequency specs aren't everything, of course, but they go a long way to potentially telling you about a monitor. (The other major measure I'd 'look' at/listen for would be damping.)

I haven't heard them -- and my own main speakers still go considerably lower with similar spec'd flatness -- but next time I'm in a pro shop, I'm going to check them out, if only to maybe have a possible recommendation when folks ask me about that class of device.

Old 18th March 2017
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teashea View Post
Anyway to answer your question ---- I have one pair of HS7's, three pair of HS5's and an HS8s subwoofer. All in the same room - I have five separate music production stations, where I do different things and I don't want to have to switch connections, so ...............
Tom
Thanks. Sounds like gadget heaven!
Old 18th March 2017
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
I was interested to see if the new IK iLoud Micro Monitors were on the list (they were), since I read someone gushing about them, was naturally skeptical but then read the marketing materials and performance specs (they're one of the few speaker makers who provide bounded frequency specs and for relatively tiny speakers, those specs strike me as very good). Frequency specs aren't everything, of course, but they go a long way to potentially telling you about a monitor. (The other major measure I'd 'look' at/listen for would be damping.)

I haven't heard them -- and my own main speakers still go considerably lower with similar spec'd flatness -- but next time I'm in a pro shop, I'm going to check them out, if only to maybe have a possible recommendation when folks ask me about that class of device.

I had the chance to have them in my studio for a few days. Incredibly impressive for the size and price.
Old 18th March 2017
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyMassacre View Post
I had the chance to have them in my studio for a few days. Incredibly impressive for the size and price.
Thanks for the report!

I suspect I may find myself recommending these (iK Multimedia iLoud Micro Monitors) to friends looking for good, small, powered speakers at a reasonable enough price. Seems like a lot of folks these days have need for powered speakers for multimedia/satellite sound systems and the like.

While the current bluetooth protocol has serious sound quality issues (because it depends on lossy compression -- but currently can't pass already-compressed content through without more lossy compression -- something the BT dev crowd needs to address in an updated transmission protocol but something that looks like it's not going to happen anytime soon), it's probably a handy convenience feature for a lot of folks.
Old 19th March 2017
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyMassacre View Post
I had the chance to have them in my studio for a few days. Incredibly impressive for the size and price.
How did they go for bass response? The very sharp rolloff on the bass indicates to me they've done some electronic boosting on the low end. I find that when the woofers are so small, bass at any kind of volume makes the midrange grainy. Those little woofers need to move too far to reproduce the lows that they start to lose and distort the midrange.

Having said all of that, it's probably reasonable performance for the price.
Old 19th March 2017
  #13
Quote:
Originally Posted by map1511 View Post
How did they go for bass response? The very sharp rolloff on the bass indicates to me they've done some electronic boosting on the low end. I find that when the woofers are so small, bass at any kind of volume makes the midrange grainy. Those little woofers need to move too far to reproduce the lows that they start to lose and distort the midrange.

Having said all of that, it's probably reasonable performance for the price.
Speaker driver technology and materials have improved a lot -- but, you're right, pushing the output of a tiny driver to an 'extreme' (not necessarily saying that's the case here) can cause greater distortion. (I'm no loudspeaker expert but I suspect it could also accentuate time domain/resonance issues in the boosted range.)
Old 21st March 2017
  #14
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MickeyMassacre's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by map1511 View Post
How did they go for bass response? The very sharp rolloff on the bass indicates to me they've done some electronic boosting on the low end. I find that when the woofers are so small, bass at any kind of volume makes the midrange grainy. Those little woofers need to move too far to reproduce the lows that they start to lose and distort the midrange.

Having said all of that, it's probably reasonable performance for the price.
I never push the volume too much on any mo itor to be honest, but at a "fun to listen to" level they sounded great. The low end was perplexingly nice.
Old 21st March 2017
  #15
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I use HS80M, and consider them the current version of the NS-10. The step up from that, Yamaha considers the replacement of the NS-10.

Like the bass response. no need for a sub.

I also have other speakers for comparison.
Old 23rd March 2017
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyMassacre View Post
I never push the volume too much on any mo itor to be honest, but at a "fun to listen to" level they sounded great. The low end was perplexingly nice.
Thanks. I'll have to listen to a pair next time I get the chance.
Old 23rd March 2017
  #17
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Focal CMS Series on discount.

A nice thing i noticed recently the focal CMS Series is on a price drop!
I bought a pair of CMS 65 for 998€ (499€ each) on Music Store.
I guess it will be a great replace for my Krk rokit G6, by the way shi* monitors...

https://www.musicstore.de/INTERSHOP/...pleOfferSearch
Old 23rd March 2017
  #18
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O.F.F.'s Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by map1511 View Post
How did they go for bass response? The very sharp rolloff on the bass indicates to me they've done some electronic boosting on the low end. I find that when the woofers are so small, bass at any kind of volume makes the midrange grainy. Those little woofers need to move too far to reproduce the lows that they start to lose and distort the midrange.

Having said all of that, it's probably reasonable performance for the price.
What you hear is harmonic and intermodulation distortion.

A small woofer will have to move back and forth a long way to reproduce bass notes. This movement modulates the mids while at the same time increasing harmonics.

The way to minimise these problems is either use a sub and high pass the monitors or better still use 3way monitors. The downside of either is price and size obviously.
Old 23rd March 2017
  #19
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If you are really interested wich monitors sells best, thoman website in germany says:
https://www.thomann.de/de/topseller_...dmonitore.html
1. KRK RP5 G3
2. KRK RP6 Rokit
3. Yamaha HS8
4. Yamaha HS7
5. Neuman KH 120a
6. JBL LSR 305.........

its obvious that best selling doesnt mean best Qualitiy.
Old 23rd March 2017
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by O.F.F. View Post
What you hear is harmonic and intermodulation distortion.

A small woofer will have to move back and forth a long way to reproduce bass notes. This movement modulates the mids while at the same time increasing harmonics.

The way to minimise these problems is either use a sub and high pass the monitors or better still use 3way monitors. The downside of either is price and size obviously.
That's certainly the concern that leaps first to mind when considering 3" speakers that are near-flat to 55 Hz!

Driver and system materials and design technologies have certainly made big advances in the last few decades and we've seen some pretty amazing performance out of some pretty small loudspeakers, but the designers are fighting a game of inches with physics.

One issue of specific concern for us in this field: the increased very low end distortion, harmonic and otherwise, might have a greater effect on accuracy than on euphony -- that is to say, it's not too hard to imagine them 'sounding good' -- too good, maybe -- introducing low frequency distortion that doesn't necessarily sound bad but is nonetheless not an accurate representation of what's there.


Amusingly, when I was checking a detail about the iLoud Micros, I saw this promo page featuring a bit of a gush about the wee things from the affable Dave Pensado: IK Multimedia | iLoud Micro Monitor: "Blew me away...an instant classic!" Make of it what you will.
Old 23rd March 2017
  #21
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I would expect THD below 100Hz to be well above 10% for those little IKs.

Also they won't get much louder than 87dBspl with any amount of power.
Old 24th March 2017
  #22
Quote:
Originally Posted by O.F.F. View Post
I would expect THD below 100Hz to be well above 10% for those little IKs.

Also they won't get much louder than 87dBspl with any amount of power.
Here's what they give for an SPL spec:

Maximum SPL @ 50cm (with two speakers playing, averaged sinewave from 100 Hz to 10 kHz): 107dB


But, of course, what that level sounds like out of the poor dears, I wouldn't want to speculate. I couldn't help but note that there were no distortion specs.


But as we all keep dutifully noting in our own ways, these are relatively inexpensive and certainly very small speakers. Anyone who was looking for something to blow the socks off the clientele at the end of a long session is probably not even going to pause on these babies...
Old 24th March 2017
  #23
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O.F.F.'s Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
Here's what they give for an SPL spec:

Maximum SPL @ 50cm (with two speakers playing, averaged sinewave from 100 Hz to 10 kHz): 107dB


But, of course, what that level sounds like out of the poor dears, I wouldn't want to speculate. I couldn't help but note that there were no distortion specs.


But as we all keep dutifully noting in our own ways, these are relatively inexpensive and certainly very small speakers. Anyone who was looking for something to blow the socks off the clientele at the end of a long session is probably not even going to pause on these babies...
With those conditions they are not lying about the speaker, just the way they used them is extremely unlikely.

The important thing here is that they are high passed besides using two at half the distance adding around 9dB. Normally I would measure one at 1m.
Excursion, like most things in nature, increases exponentially when you go down in frequency so to produce 55Hz at the same spl as 110Hz you will need 4x the cone travel.
So they will do 107dBspl but only if you never give them any input below 100Hz.

On paper I would pick JBL 305s over these anytime. Cheaper too...
Old 2nd April 2017
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
That's certainly the concern that leaps first to mind when considering 3" speakers that are near-flat to 55 Hz!
Totally agree with this... you just can't get great sounding bass out of 3" speakers... Physics gets in the way...

Also, I've learn't not to be fooled by a flat frequency response plot. While the plot looks great for these little IKs, I'd definitely have a listen and see if they sound as good as the plots might lead you to believe. I've often found that the best speakers on paper are not the ones you want to buy.
Old 3rd April 2017
  #25
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The article lists the JBL LSR305's but not the LSR308's. I always had (note had) problems with bass on mixing. I decided to buy new monitors for my home studio. I tried the 305's but ultimately went with the 308's because of my bass mixing problems. I now usually nail the bass on the first mix. Actually most of my mixes are good on the first mix and usually I remix because I don't like the volume of one or two tracks in the mix and will remix to get the tracks at the right levels.
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