Mixing with Mackie HR/824's
Old 8th March 2010
  #1
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Mixing with Mackie HR/824's

OK, budget's blown, and I went with the Mackie's, no room to add auatones or anything like that to check mixes on. I will, of course, check on boombox, car, etc... but just wondering what general feedback you guys have for mixing on these... what in particular to pay attention to, look out for, etc. to get most translatable mix.
Old 8th March 2010
  #2
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Ernest Buckley's Avatar
I`ve had my 824s for 12 years. As you know, the 824s have settings in the back so what you hear is going to depend a lot on that. Obviously, the room you`re mixing in has its own character so I can`t really tell you what you should be hearing but when I first got mine, I had to get used to the low end.

It took me a while to get used to hearing that much low end on monitors so I backed off a lot and my mixes sounded very thin because I thought the 824s were pushing the low end too much but they are pretty honest monitors, hence their popularity.

So I would encourage you to try mixing a song with different settings and see what works best for you. The funny thing is, I`ve been mixing a lot more on headphones the last 2 years and I`m pretty comfortable with it but I still check everything through the 824s. Rest assured, your budget may not have allowed you to get your first choice, but the 824s are good.
Old 8th March 2010
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CallMeAl View Post
OK, budget's blown, and I went with the Mackie's, no room to add auatones or anything like that to check mixes on. I will, of course, check on boombox, car, etc... but just wondering what general feedback you guys have for mixing on these... what in particular to pay attention to, look out for, etc. to get most translatable mix.
The Mackies get a lot of bad press, but I feel they are excellent monitors and compare with units costing 2 or even 3x as much, in some cases.

IOW you can spend a lot more and get a lot less.


There is a lot of loyalty and hype in the monitor world and you have to decide what works for you.
Old 8th March 2010
  #4
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Thread Starter
Well, I certainly love the way they sound... just not sure how they translate. I think I've got the switches all set right for my situation. The bass is certainly big... and low. Not really sure what to make of that, but I guess I'll try assuming it's dead on.

Any particular crossover issues you've noticed?
Old 8th March 2010
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Old 8th March 2010
  #6
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Ernest Buckley's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by CallMeAl View Post
Any particular crossover issues you've noticed?
The 824s are pretty damn smooth across the board. Like all gear, you need to spend some time with them. If your room is in decent shape, you`ll get good mixes out of them and yes, they have a big bottom! heh

First time I heard them was at a Mackie show... I was looking for the sub woofers.... there weren`t any.
Old 8th March 2010
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dude24man View Post
primacoustic recoils will make your hr824's sound freakin awesome. the boomyness or extendo bass will become much tighter and you'll be able to get better mixes faster. arty

Dms Recording Studio - Full Service Recording Studio
+ 1 thumbsup
Old 8th March 2010
  #8
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Ben B's Avatar
 

Love my 824's.



-Ben B
Old 8th March 2010
  #9
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packagebear's Avatar
 

I;ve had mine since 2002(usa made) and I never understood the ire they've brought on this board. to each their own. They;re my sole monitors and I dread the day something pops on them ..
Old 8th March 2010
  #10
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
Just spend a lot of time listening to CDs you know and love on them and really get to know them. You should be able to do very good mixes on them.

For your second set of monitors, go to a thrift shop and buy some cheap computer speakers. They provide a really interesting alternate reference.
Old 8th March 2010
  #11
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Rainy Days's Avatar
 

I have the 624's but I adore them. Will most likely upgrade to the 824's with the optional sub sometime in the future. High quality product, very punchy, works well in Dubstep or Drum & Bass production.
Old 8th March 2010
  #12
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Thread Starter
Sounds good. Looking into the speaker stand thingamajigs... hard to believe they make that much difference, but I guess I'll have to check it out.

I actually got these monitors a while back, but I'm just now getting to the stage where I'm starting to mix for my album after months of recording, arranging, etc...

Definitely gonna do the cheap computer speakers for my b set... the ns10's for the new millennium.

2 questions: First, I've read mainly good things about them... that's why I looked into them in the first place. The negative stuff I heard was general like "harsh" or whatever... certainly not specific. If anyone did have anything negative to say, what specifically would they be likely to say, like "Watch out for sibilances because there's a dip in the 8k range" or "There's lots of bass, but it's over-emphasizing certain frequencies to get that level, so be sure to reference on bigger drivers if you're using 808's and the like"....


Also: I bumped into one of them the other day and dented the center of the woofer inward. What's the best way to fix it? I can't seem to get it from the outside. If I remove the woofer with a hex tool or whatever, am I gonna have enough play in the wires to reach in and pop it out? Do I have to get in some other way?
Old 8th March 2010
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CallMeAl View Post


Also: I bumped into one of them the other day and dented the center of the woofer inward. What's the best way to fix it? I can't seem to get it from the outside. If I remove the woofer with a hex tool or whatever, am I gonna have enough play in the wires to reach in and pop it out? Do I have to get in some other way?
Do you mean the dome in the center of the woofer? If so my 2 year old pushed in the dome on my 824 mkI and I was able to massage it out from the front. I don't think you can access it from the rear. I've heard of people using something sticky(but not to sticky), like chewing gum or blue painters tape to pull them out.
Old 8th March 2010
  #14
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Ron Vogel's Avatar
 

I've used a vacuum attachment to pull out dust caps before, it works but you need to be careful. It's a last resort if the painter's tape doesn't work.
Old 8th March 2010
  #15
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I've done long sessions on the 824s and have nothing but praise. For their price point they are very functional. Some would say they are flawed and maintain a hyped freq response. Though this may be true, like any monitor once you understand their behavior in your room they are reliable.
Old 8th March 2010
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rainy Days View Post
I have the 624's but I adore them. Will most likely upgrade to the 824's with the optional sub sometime in the future. High quality product, very punchy, works well in Dubstep or Drum & Bass production.
Honestly if I were you I'd stick with the 624s. I think they are a better monitor, flatter, more detailed, slightly better transient response (which is still the weak point of both of these monitors though) and none of the overbearing bass "problems" of the 824. (which is still a very good monitor) 624s are just great. The price tags should be reversed!
Old 8th March 2010
  #17
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Thread Starter
ahhh... hadn't thought of using tape. That should do it, it's very thin and pliable.
Old 8th March 2010
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ernest Buckley View Post
First time I heard them was at a Mackie show... I was looking for the sub woofers.... there weren`t any.
I did the same thing.
Old 8th March 2010
  #19
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Are we talking about the mk1s or mk2s?
Old 8th March 2010
  #20
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rogerbrain's Avatar
I have a pair in two separate spaces.. I am very happy with them for the $$$ I think they cross the line to an actually usable product. anything less being not usable. I just bought the second pair *(used, good shape 500.00) and did not find for even twice the money that came close.. now for 3 or 4 times the $$ there is a lot..

they work fine.. I use a regular stereo and 'the car' to test mixes .and do not have to do many fixes.. it is mostly the change in environment that helps me.

a little 'get used to them' time and you should be good to go.
Old 8th March 2010
  #21
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PeteJames's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rogerbrain View Post
I have a pair in two separate spaces.. I am very happy with them for the $$$ I think they cross the line to an actually usable product. anything less being not usable. I just bought the second pair *(used, good shape 500.00) and did not find for even twice the money that came close.. now for 3 or 4 times the $$ there is a lot..

they work fine.. I use a regular stereo and 'the car' to test mixes .and do not have to do many fixes.. it is mostly the change in environment that helps me.

a little 'get used to them' time and you should be good to go.
They are only just usable but as good as monitors costing more than twice as much?
Old 8th March 2010
  #22
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Thread Starter
Mk 1's here.

They sound so good and full I can't believe it for the price... especially powered... I did a WAY too loud listening of Herbie Hancock's Watermellon Man off Headhunters, and heard detail after detail I've never heard before in the bass... those things can really crank if you ask 'em nicely.
Old 8th March 2010
  #23
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I upgraded to Focal Twins last year from HR824 mk1's and the difference was HUGE. Though the 824's sounded great in my room, it took a long time to get the mixes i was after on them and it was absolutely essential to test mixes on several systmes as the 824's just weren't accurate enough-in fact i was always fighting against them. The Focals have shown me how with the right monitors you seldom need to check mixes out of the room apart from for the odd tweak here and there.

This post is not to derail the thread, just to give you my first hand experience of using the 824's. Getting rid of them and buying the Focals was actually the best thing i ever did in terms of studio upgrades. I can now mix so much more quickly and accurately.

Obviously the Mackies are ok for the money and i used them for several years along with checking on other systems and got good mixes going but the shrouded mid range and over emphasised bottom end caused me a lot of headaches.
Old 8th March 2010
  #24
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Thread Starter
no, that's cool. I'm looking for specifics. If you don't like them, then why... what is it about your mix translating that's problematic... just so I have a few things to look out for in particular as I start mixing.
Old 8th March 2010
  #25
Gear Maniac
 

I was having big problems with the bottom, but bass traps straightened them out A-OK.
Old 8th March 2010
  #26
HR824's seem to be good enough for this guy...



as with any monitors, spend a good amount of time listening to records that you know really well so you have a firm baseline for those monitors, in your room.

might not be a bad idea to listen to like five albums you know well in your room, on those monitors, and at least two other locations / playback systems to better understand translation on material you know.

about a decade ago I went through a monitor upgrade frenzy which did more harm than good as I was going through monitors faster then I was learning them... odds are you are not in a perfect mixing room, so any monitors you get will most likely be compromised by your environment.

no matter what monitors you ultimately decide on you'll have to understand how they sound in your room, and how they translate outside of it.

if you have any friends with access to a mastering room - it's nice to take a few ref mixes to mastering room and spend a couple of hours there listening to how your mixes sound in a really dialed in room as well.
Old 8th March 2010
  #27
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I like my pair of HR 824's (USA made, mark 1). I highly recommend, as mentioned in an earlier post, that you place each 824 on a primeacoustic recoil stabilizer. I was skeptical about the recoil stabilizer, sounded like some sort of audiofile gimmick, but after I got a pair and used them, I was sold. One of the best things about the 824 is their solid low end, it eliminates any need for a subwoofer, but the big bass can cause whatever surface you put the speaker on to resonate and the recoil stabilizer eliminates that and gives you a much more accurate low end. If you can get a mix to sound good on an 824 it will translate well to other systems. The smaller 624 is also nice, but it does not have the solid bottom end of the 824.
Old 8th March 2010
  #28
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worked great for me for the last few years.

though Im still wondering what the mk2 version sounds like.
Old 8th March 2010
  #29
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rogerbrain's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeteJames View Post
They are only just usable but as good as monitors costing more than twice as much?
you miss my point. I (me, not you) have not found anything under 1.2K that gives me what I need to mix on. at about that dollar range you start having some choices. I don't think powered events are worth spending $$ on, the small focals at about 1k don't seem like as good a deal as .5K on the Mackies (new vs used yes but where are the used focals?) where are the Focal SM65's for under 1.5K ..??

i didn't find anything that I thought worked as well (notice I said 'I thought') until over $1200.00 .. I can't wait for a used set of Focals 6.5's to turn up at 1K .. I could not find any Haflers...no used westlakes etc ...I don't seem to 'click' with KRK's .. the mackie is a known quantiy (I am not a mackie fan in general) but I get acceptable results with the monitors AT $500.00 a pair. If I had 2K to spend i would be looking elsewhere.

what else can you get for under 1.2K (let alone .5K) that translates as well?? unpowered NS10's and a power amp with a fan??

point me in a direction

I am CERTAINLY not asking you to like Mackies..
I am saying they would be my choice until I have enough $$ (like about 2K to 2.5K) to actually get a real improvement over what i am getting now. Then I have to decided if my room is up to the challenge.

FWIW ..I also like my 737SP, I am not all that impressed with my SM7b ..I like Marshalls and I mix ITB.

a few posts below yours said EXACTLY what I am saying .. He upgraded to the Focal Twins and the diff is HUGE ..unless i did my math wrong they cost a bit more than 500 a pair..
Old 9th March 2010
  #30
Make sure you treat your room, and get the recoils and like Ronan said a/b with cd's. To get better than HR 824's you have to spend a lot of money
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