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NY nearfield monitor shootout Studio Monitors
Old 9th September 2011
  #1
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NY nearfield monitor shootout

So after working for years on genelecs than a few years on Barefoots (which were a revolution for me) and having tried a bunch (but not all) of nearfields I have settled on a pair of digital phase monitors that I think are absolutely outstanding and stand out above the rest. However there are still aspects of the Barefoots that I miss. I am very curious to hear other engineer's opinions on them as well as put them side by side to ATC's, mm35's, Klein and Hummel, pmc, and event opals, as well as any others anyone feels is worthy for a shootout. Anyone interested in helping setting up a shootout party in NYC area? I will bring my digital phase monitors along with parasound halo A23 amp.
Old 9th September 2011
  #2
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
So after working for years on genelecs than a few years on Barefoots (which were a revolution for me) and having tried a bunch (but not all) of nearfields I have settled on a pair of digital phase monitors that I think are absolutely outstanding and stand out above the rest. I am very curious to hear other engineer's opinions on them as well as put them side by side to ATC's, mm35's, Klein and Hummel, pmc, and event opals, as well as any others anyone feels is worthy for a shootout. Anyone interested in helping setting up a shootout party in NYC area? I will bring my digital phase monitors along with parasound halo A23 amp.
Gotta try Guzauski-Swist GS-3a speakers. They are an NY company, and have a few pairs kicking around midtown Manhattan.
Old 9th September 2011
  #3
Gear Maniac
 

Interesting thread. I'm looking forward to hearing about these shoot-outs, Diegel!
Old 9th September 2011
  #4
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cheu78's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
So after working for years on genelecs than a few years on Barefoots (which were a revolution for me) and having tried a bunch (but not all) of nearfields I have settled on a pair of digital phase monitors that I think are absolutely outstanding and stand out above the rest. I am very curious to hear other engineer's opinions on them as well as put them side by side to ATC's, mm35's, Klein and Hummel, pmc, and event opals, as well as any others anyone feels is worthy for a shootout. Anyone interested in helping setting up a shootout party in NYC area? I will bring my digital phase monitors along with parasound halo A23 amp.
While not only a nearfield, I suggest to put the new Focal SM9 in the shootout..
Worth checking IMO..

just my suggestion..

Bests,

Cheu
Old 9th September 2011
  #5
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FossilTooth's Avatar
 

I'm not sure that I can help, but I think this is a fantastic idea, and you should do it!
Old 9th September 2011
  #6
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Just waitin on some volunteers. I know there have been a couple of similar shootouts but usually by only one or two people and who knows knows what type of environment it was done in or what type of bias the one or two individuals may have based on what they are used to. Thats why Im looking for a nice group of maybe 6-8 engineers including myself to bring their own personal monitors and have a nice collective review.
Old 10th September 2011
  #7
Gear Maniac
 

May I suggest also adding Meyer Sound HD-1 and Quested V2108 (not VS2108) to the list?
Are your DPs passive or active? I'd like to hear more about them vs. ATCs.
Old 11th September 2011
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elix View Post
May I suggest also adding Meyer Sound HD-1 and Quested V2108 (not VS2108) to the list?
Are your DPs passive or active? I'd like to hear more about them vs. ATCs.
DP's are only passive. And I just can't say enough about how amazing they are. I personally feel they are just worlds beyond any other monitor Ive heard (including one's 5 or even 50 times the price) and I am just excited to bring them to people's attention. They just bring a whole new inspiration to me to make music everyday. Oh and translation on them = perfect. Btw I have no affiliation with DP whatsoever. The questeds seem to be pretty popular. So any interested volunteers in NYC???
Old 15th September 2011
  #9
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NY nearfield monitor shootout

Well since no volunteers I guess I'm gonna just demo on my own. I plan on checking out Atc, Geithain, KS digital, and Event Opals. I'll post my reviews.
Old 15th September 2011
  #10
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cheu78's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
Well since no volunteers I guess I'm gonna just demo on my own. I plan on checking out Atc, Geithain, KS digital, and Event Opals. I'll post my reviews.
Hey Diegel, no chance of including the SM9? Try to see if Focal or a distributor is willing of sending them at your place..

Btw..let us know your findings..

Bests,



Cheu
Old 15th September 2011
  #11
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Arksun's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
So after working for years on genelecs than a few years on Barefoots (which were a revolution for me) and having tried a bunch (but not all) of nearfields I have settled on a pair of digital phase monitors that I think are absolutely outstanding and stand out above the rest. I am very curious to hear other engineer's opinions on them as well as put them side by side to ATC's, mm35's, Klein and Hummel, pmc, and event opals, as well as any others anyone feels is worthy for a shootout. Anyone interested in helping setting up a shootout party in NYC area? I will bring my digital phase monitors along with parasound halo A23 amp.
Do these digital phase monitors have a name?.
Also, it doesn't seem to make sense to have a parasound halo A23 amp as well. Thats a power amp, which suggests your monitors are passive?, but if thats the case, how can they be digital phase?. Once the signal has been power amplified in the analogue domain, it wouldn't make sense to convert to digital again, that would be done pre-amp. Surely a digital phase monitor has to be active by its design?

Or is the A23 amp purely there to drive other passive monitors in the shootout?
Old 15th September 2011
  #12
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Fleaman's Avatar
 

digital phase are passive.

Yes the name is strange.
Old 15th September 2011
  #13
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BB Bill's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Clueless View Post
Gotta try Guzauski-Swist GS-3a speakers. They are an NY company, and have a few pairs kicking around midtown Manhattan.
+1 to that. I have a pair, and they are incredible.
Old 15th September 2011
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arksun View Post
Do these digital phase monitors have a name?.
Also, it doesn't seem to make sense to have a parasound halo A23 amp as well. Thats a power amp, which suggests your monitors are passive?, but if thats the case, how can they be digital phase?. Once the signal has been power amplified in the analogue domain, it wouldn't make sense to convert to digital again, that would be done pre-amp. Surely a digital phase monitor has to be active by its design?

Or is the A23 amp purely there to drive other passive monitors in the shootout?
Digital phase is simply the name of the company. There is nothing digital about them. They are passive monitors. From what I've gathered it seems the owner/designer seems to have no interest in name, marketing, or anything other than creating the finest speakers in the world.
Old 15th September 2011
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheu78 View Post
Hey Diegel, no chance of including the SM9? Try to see if Focal or a distributor is willing of sending them at your place..

Btw..let us know your findings..

Bests,



Cheu
I've listened to some of Focal's lower end monitors and was very underwhelmed. Plus from other peoples experiences Ive read have almost always preferred K+H and ATC over Focal. I cant demo every monitor on the planet so I gotta pick a few that seem to have the best reviews. Afterwards if someone in the area has a pair of Focal sm9's or these Guzauski's or anything else I'd be happy to pit my winner up against them.
Old 16th September 2011
  #16
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Arksun's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
Digital phase is simply the name of the company. There is nothing digital about them. They are passive monitors. From what I've gathered it seems the owner/designer seems to have no interest in name, marketing, or anything other than creating the finest speakers in the world.
Ah, now that makes sense heh, thought it converted to digital first and did phase alignment compensation there, turns out it was the actual name all along, doh!.
Old 16th September 2011
  #17
.

I'd love to hear how my newest Tyler Acoustics Linbrooks fare against the rest of these guys.

And my Linkwitz Orions, as well...but it's too much of a PITA to transport the Orions.

I'll be curious to see how you guys do.

.
Old 16th September 2011
  #18
Gear Head
 

damn, if i was still in NY i'd be totally up for this. 6 months too late...
Old 16th September 2011
  #19
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cheu78's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
I've listened to some of Focal's lower end monitors and was very underwhelmed. Plus from other peoples experiences Ive read have almost always preferred K+H and ATC over Focal. I cant demo every monitor on the planet so I gotta pick a few that seem to have the best reviews. Afterwards if someone in the area has a pair of Focal sm9's or these Guzauski's or anything else I'd be happy to pit my winner up against them.
I understand your point, but this is not a lowerend speaker and has totally different amplifiers (and also a different tweeter, apparently a new version)..

I hope that somebody will come to your place with a pair when you have picked up a winner..
It's nice to hear other (hopefully unbiased) opinions, even if especially with speakers, the matter is very subjective..

kudos to you for putting your time into this! ..even without SM9

Take care and let us know..


Best regards,

Cheu
Old 18th September 2011
  #20
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Andy Bernbaum's Avatar
 

Hi Diegel. The shoot out sounds like great idea. With all the new models and boutique brands one just cannot hear them all. A good current shoot out involving newer speakers is over due.I did a lot of listening and finally picked KS Digital ADM 12's.. Speakers being something that I consider indisposable and not interchangable. This became a very difficult decision. There are many similiarities with many speakers as ATC softdome type of midrange type being used. I really wanted to hear the Focal SM 9 as it brought some different design ideas to the table at a fairly inexpensive price point.. You just cannot get a pair to demo yet. Of course budget dictates a lot. I spent almost double what budgeted and could have easily doubled or tripled that if money had been available. I would love to see your results.
Andy
Old 19th September 2011
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Bernbaum View Post
Hi Diegel. The shoot out sounds like great idea. With all the new models and boutique brands one just cannot hear them all. A good current shoot out involving newer speakers is over due.I did a lot of listening and finally picked KS Digital ADM 12's.. Speakers being something that I consider indisposable and not interchangable. This became a very difficult decision. There are many similiarities with many speakers as ATC softdome type of midrange type being used. I really wanted to hear the Focal SM 9 as it brought some different design ideas to the table at a fairly inexpensive price point.. You just cannot get a pair to demo yet. Of course budget dictates a lot. I spent almost double what budgeted and could have easily doubled or tripled that if money had been available. I would love to see your results.
Andy
So I assume you've heard the ATC's and still went with the KS Digital?
Old 26th September 2011
  #22
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Well I just got my new Digital Phase monitors. I had told the designer my old ones were not powerful enough and I sent them back for a more powerful pair and he didnt charge even charge me! I must say that I am completely floored. The sound that comes out of these is exactly how I expect music to sound. Its the closest thing I have heard to being "the viewpoint." I am hearing things I never heard before like subtle miscellaneous noises and distortion buried deep within a couple of mixes. The best way I can describe how they sound is they are most similar to PMC monitors but the sound seems to be much more linear and natural. Or if Barefoot made a two way monitor with no subs on the sides I would imagine these would sound similar. The feeling I always had on Barefoots at the end of a mix was okay this sounds great, but now how does it sound when you "wrap it all up" or "close the box" - meaning listening to the mix on listening or consumer speakers? So lets put it this way Barefoots are amazing for seeing deep into the mix but I feel like you really need a pair of speakers to then "close the box." So this is really apples to oranges as far as the purpose of the monitor. I feel like the Barefoots are better for seeing deep into the mix. But seeing as how I always ended up making my final decisions on listening speakers (computer speakers, Home theater speakers, TV) I just decided why dont I just get a great pair of listening speakers for the studio and I cant imagine anything better (especially for the price!). I also have NS-10s which are indispensable for me. Now I still feel like I am missing a pair of monitors which would be something more exposing along the lines of barefoots and also something that could be great for tracking (I wasn't 100% happy with barefoots for tracking). I am still curious to hear Geithain, ATC, and KS Digital, also possibly Event Opals. Hoping there are any slutz in or around NYC with a pair that would be kind enough to let me stop in for a listen and I would gladly bring my pair of Digital Phase monitors with Parasound amp if you want to hear a rediculous pair of speakers.
Old 27th October 2011
  #23
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suspire's Avatar
 

Diegel, are these the EP-SM1s you are using? I'm in Atlanta and thinking of driving up to Tenn to demo them. Having a hard time finding passive near-fields.
Old 28th October 2011
  #24
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I'll bring a set of ATC 25's ....
Old 28th October 2011
  #25
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Slikjmuzik's Avatar
 

Are these Digital Phase monitors really that good? I've been looking for something a bit better and bigger sounding than my Adams and one of the things I was interested in was being able to hear deeper into the mix. Do they get loud? What model, the AP-.7's or something else? If so, can a monitor that sells for a mere $1200 really be that good? What;s the most inexpensive amp that'll drive these guys well for proper reference monitoring?
Old 24th November 2011
  #26
Gear Maniac
 

It's a pity the shoot-out didn't happen.
@Diegel, you should also add Totem Acoustic to the list because I've heard it's very good (And because it's the same form-factor as DP).
Old 26th November 2011
  #27
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Well I was at Aes and got to hear the new Adams, ATC SCM25's, PMC AML-1's, Focals (Don't remember which model), Barefoot MM35's. Believe it or not I am actually back to using my Genelec 1031A's. Here my opinion of everything at this point. I am not getting into translation for 2 reasons. I believe any of these monitors can be learned and I just simply couldnt perform a translation test on all of them. Also given that translation is important, it is also extremely important for me to use a tool that inspires me to work:

Genelec 1031a's - Fun to work on and revealing

Digital Phase Custom Bookshelfs - Ultimate Home Theater Speakers meets a great studio tool, Cool for listening to the final product. Like if I finish a mix on a revealing speaker like the barefoots or Genelecs there is always this feeling to me like "ok now lets hear how it really sounds" and thats where consumer speakers come in. But after coming back to the genelecs I find I prefer to start mixing on them and then check the Digital Phase monitors later on.

ATC SCM25s - Was not a fan. Music sounded lifeless to me. I dont care how well they might translate.

PMC AML-1's - Simply awesome monitors. Music sounded like music, amazing clarity, and would love to own a pair but with my genelecs I dont feel the need to.

Focals - They're ok I guess but nothing special.

Barefot mm35's - Great monitors but having worked on the mm27's for years I still never got 100% satisfied with the subs on the sides. They dont inspire me to work as much as genelecs or Digital Phase but I would say that technically speaking they are a more revealing and better mix tool.

Adams (all models) - Never liked a single pair of Adams and still holds true. Although their latest offering I feel is an improvement.
Old 26th November 2011
  #28
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John Willett's Avatar
 

The thing about monitors is, that they are not there to sound "good", but to clearly show you what you are doing.

They should only sound great if the recording is great.

That's why my short list is (alphabetically): ATC, Harbeth, Geithain, Neumann/K+H and PMC.
Old 26th November 2011
  #29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diegel View Post
Well I was at Aes and got to hear the new Adams, ATC SCM25's, PMC AML-1's, Focals (Don't remember which model), Barefoot MM35's. Believe it or not I am actually back to using my Genelec 1031A's. Here my opinion of everything at this point. I am not getting into translation for 2 reasons. I believe any of these monitors can be learned and I just simply couldnt perform a translation test on all of them. Also given that translation is important, it is also extremely important for me to use a tool that inspires me to work:

Genelec 1031a's - Fun to work on and revealing

Digital Phase Custom Bookshelfs - Ultimate Home Theater Speakers meets a great studio tool, Cool for listening to the final product. Like if I finish a mix on a revealing speaker like the barefoots or Genelecs there is always this feeling to me like "ok now lets hear how it really sounds" and thats where consumer speakers come in. But after coming back to the genelecs I find I prefer to start mixing on them and then check the Digital Phase monitors later on.

ATC SCM25s - Was not a fan. Music sounded lifeless to me. I dont care how well they might translate.

PMC AML-1's - Simply awesome monitors. Music sounded like music, amazing clarity, and would love to own a pair but with my genelecs I dont feel the need to.

Focals - They're ok I guess but nothing special.

Barefot mm35's - Great monitors but having worked on the mm27's for years I still never got 100% satisfied with the subs on the sides. They dont inspire me to work as much as genelecs or Digital Phase but I would say that technically speaking they are a more revealing and better mix tool.

Adams (all models) - Never liked a single pair of Adams and still holds true. Although their latest offering I feel is an improvement.
and you can tell all of that on the floor of the AES show, really?
Old 26th November 2011
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
The thing about monitors is, that they are not there to sound "good", but to clearly show you what you are doing.

They should only sound great if the recording is great.

That's why my short list is (alphabetically): ATC, Harbeth, Geithain, Neumann/K+H and PMC.
Yes exactly. That is what I mean. I brought a cd with me with a variety of good mixes and bad mixes that I am very familiar with.
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