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Limiting to Prevent Monitor Blowout Studio Monitors
Old 2nd September 2011
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initself's Avatar
Limiting to Prevent Monitor Blowout

Last night I was making some tracks with very low sub bass and playing it very loud. The LEDs on Mackie HR824s were flashing red a lot signalling *DANGER*. The sound also started to degrade.

So, is the conclusion here that I am playing music too loud and my speakers can't handle it and I should therefore

a) get a sub
b) get larger speakers that can handle it (mid or far field)
c) put a limiter on my chain somewhere
d) turn it down
e) use headphones


Old 2nd September 2011
Lives for gear
Mackies go pretty low really so maybe a sub and limiter is way to go.
Old 2nd September 2011
Lives for gear

I'd probably go with D but a couple things that occurred to me to check....

I'm not familiar with those speakers intimately, but they are active/powered speakers and have a volume control right?

So is the clip indicator metering the input or the output? If it's the input, it might be a simple gain-staging issue solved by turning up your speakers and turning down your monitor control (whether that be software or hardware).

Check your manual to see - a lot of powered monitors have a built-in limiter to protect them. If that's the case I'd still vote for turning them down a bit but at least you don't have to stress about blowing them. (your ears, on the other hand.... )

If it's a matter of a lot of sub-bass overwhelming them, I suppose a sub/crossover situation would help you get the volume up without straining the mackies so much.

Probably it's just too damn loud! Be careful - hearing damage can really sneak up on you in the studio environment.
Old 2nd September 2011
Lives for gear
AlexK's Avatar

I would go with both B and D. I've never liked the 824 - far too coloured and a little brittle to my ears. Unless you've got a big room though, you're probably listening too loud to be hitting the limiter on 824s...
Old 2nd September 2011
Lives for gear
But the Mackies go low like down to 35Hz, this guy will need a mid field to go down to 30Hz and lower, along with loud output to really get the low end / volume he wants which will cost allot of money.

He will need one of the following monitors as an example:

Adam S4X (Maybe S3X)
Quested V3110
Barefoot Micromain 27

Which is why I suggested a sub and limiter.

But if you can afford the above monitors and have the room for it any would be a very nice addition and a giant step up from the Mackies.

I feel you as well, as I like pumping loud volumes, sometimes bigger is better and turning down ruins what your trying to work with.
Old 2nd September 2011
Gear Addict

Turn it down.

and as mentioned above if you really feel the need to get new monitors, Quested.

But, turn it down.
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