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Is it a bad idea to plug my expensive monitors directly into my audio interface? Monitor Controllers
Old 6th May 2009
  #31
Just a quick note, here.

I haven't read the whole thread, but scanned it to see if the word 'trim' or 'pad' was used in it and it wasn't -- although I suspect this has nonetheless been covered above, I'll still go ahead, 'cause some folks miss this:


Many powered monitors have an input trim pot on the back (or somewhere on the monitor). This is intended so that you can set a maximum level for your monitors. Not only will an appropriate setting mean a reduced chance of shredding your speaker drivers -- it should also help lower their self-noise.

Now, even then, it's still better, in principle, to run the output of your DA converter full open from the digital side (to assure full use of dynamic bandwidth) and then control the CR volume from some form of analog control between the DA and the speaker inputs.


With regard to passive versus active monitor level control -- and I'd love one of you wirehead EE guys to weigh in here -- it's kind of vaguely my thinking that it's harder in some ways to design and implement a passive variable control that maintains proper impedance relationship with the speaker. But, this here would-be-English major (if I'd been less of a hippie and declared a major in my checkered uni carreer) is hardly the guy to ask, so I'll take your responses offline... er... you know what I mean. heh
Old 6th May 2009
  #32
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisrnps View Post
The most important piece of equipment in any professional, project, or home studio being the coffee maker, of course. Gotta keep that thing calibrated and aligned at all times.

You'd be sadly surprised by how many people -- people with a professional shingle out, taking clients -- how many people don't really know how to properly maintain a coffee making device.

It makes a guy worry about the future of the industry...
Old 6th May 2009
  #33
I go analog out on six channels of my SSL Alpha link to an A Designs ATTY2'D for level control and monitor switching, which I highly recommend. I've built passive attenuators with $100 pots and the ATTY2'D was far better. You won't hear any coloration, and since it's a passive device, it's real easy to add to your setup. You can use it to switch between two sets of stereo and two mono; or three sets of stereo monitors by using both mono sections; and each section has its own mute switch. You can also use it for 5.1. thanks to a very handy overall mute switch.

I've used it with A7s and was completely satisfied with the sound - the A7s performed as expected.

You can pick one up for $525
Old 6th May 2009
  #34
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
Many powered monitors have an input trim pot on the back (or somewhere on the monitor). This is intended so that you can set a maximum level for your monitors. Not only will an appropriate setting mean a reduced chance of shredding your speaker drivers -- it should also help lower their self-noise.

Well, I have the 1st generation Tannoy Reveal Actives, which do NOT have any level/trim/gain control on them. In fact, the only control on them is on/off. [And yes, they're the last piece to go on.]


Quote:
Originally Posted by Backhousepro View Post
I go analog out on six channels of my SSL Alpha link to an A Designs ATTY2'D for level control and monitor switching, which I highly recommend.

You can pick one up for $525
I am on a very limited budget here. $500 is way more than I can afford for now. I can be believe that the ATTYs don't really colour the sound. But I am more interested in HOW MUCH do the Soundcrafts (or other cheap mixers) warp what I hear.

If it is a lot of colouration, then I'll go with the SM Pro Audio products, which sell for £50-100 depending on model.

Anyway, I have only a midly treated bedroom and some beginner-level monitors. Spending more on monitor controls than the monitors itself seems to defeat the point (I paid £140 for the Tannoys).
Old 6th May 2009
  #35
Gear Maniac
An old hi-fi receiver with the ins/outs you need should work fine for very little money.

Plus it has remote control.
Old 7th May 2009
  #36
Here for the gear
 

Old hifi receivers rarely have balanced ins and outs AFAIK... And a mic pre amp (of any quality) would save me from having to buy that separately.

I came across Soundcraft Compact 4, read a bit here and elsewhere. For £70 (new!) it would have everything I need. But how is the sound?

A thread more suited to that specific mixer is here:
Soundcraft Compact 4 Mixer?
Old 4th May 2010
  #37
Here for the gear
 

so what happens if you do plug in directly?

how much damage can you do if you plug into your preamp directly without properly attenuating?
Old 4th May 2010
  #38
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by footsies View Post
My only ADDA is my soundcard (EMU 1212m). I control volume from the windows volume controller, thus loosing bits and having only one set of balanced stereo outs, which I can\'t split into balanced and unbalanced with a simple splitter. And my monitors are active, so no poweramp either.
You won\'t be losing bits, your just be nearer to the noise floor.
Old 4th May 2010
  #39
Gear Addict
 
bobby yarrow's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by beefybassandsub View Post
okay, so how would the m-patch 2 mentioned above protect my monitors from this particular situation?
This is the thing. I'm currently going straight from my d/a to my monitors, and I can't think of any reason it's less safe than running through an attenuator. I turn my monitors off, as folks say.

I used a controller when I wanted to switch back and forth between monitors, but I stopped finding that useful. I control volume with the RME mixer, which doesn't come into play at all when I'm mixing down. Works well, and the stereo image is remarkably better, especially at low volumes.
Old 4th May 2010
  #40
Quote:
Originally Posted by beefybassandsub View Post
thanks for all your replies.

this particular unit looks great for the price, but I'd like to be able to switch between 3 sets of monitors.

Would a mixing console like the tapco i posted above be just as capable and reliable?
To answer your question:

No, it won't.

Crappy mixers like this don't have provisions to switch multiple outputs.

You need a monitor controller.
Old 4th May 2010
  #41
Lives for gear
 
James Lehmann's Avatar
 

An LA Audio SPX-20 is what you need - unfortunately I think it's now discontinued but if you find one second-hand it's a fully balanced, passive source selector with two discrete outputs and a headphone amp, albeit lacking in Talkback or Remote.

Old 11th June 2013
  #42
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post
To answer your question:

No, it won't.

Crappy mixers like this don't have provisions to switch multiple outputs.

You need a monitor controller.
Sry to bump an old thread but this was a very interesting read all throughout...

I'd like to pick up here instead of repeating a new thread :


What if you want to switch between a hifi amp/speakers and powered monitors, and thus simply use the control room out on the mixer to seperate the hifi amp from the monitors ???

Would that still affect the sound badly on a £40 mixer ?
Old 11th June 2013
  #43
Here for the gear
 
darksidez's Avatar
Personally I use the Focal Sm9's and I would highly recommend if you are going to put the Adams to the test I would go with something like an Steinberg MR816CSX or some kind of Audio card Rack. Chances are if you are running expensive monitors, I would not recommend running them through cheap products. Remember the saying "Good equipment is not cheap and cheap equipment is not good." Food for thought if you need advice just pm me!
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