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Stands worth it? Channel Strip Plugins
Old 15th September 2011
  #1
Lives for gear
Stands worth it?

Are Monitor stands worth buying? At the moment my monitors rest on my desk, I don't have pads or stands, but im desiding which one to get first. Eventually I will have both but eventually sometimes takes a few months.

Which would you choose to get first and what are good companys for a good price for both?
Old 15th September 2011
  #2
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A while ago we built monitor stands out of PVC pipe and flanges.
Old 15th September 2011
  #3
.

Yes. I love my weighted monitor stands.

Ultimate Support MS-45B2 45” Monitor Stand
Ultimate Support MS-45B2 45” Monitor Stand (Pair): Shop Accessories & Other Musical Instruments | Musician's Friend

I've put all kinds of monitors on them - vertically, horizontally, etc.

I love the fact that the monitors are off the desk, and easily adjustable in relation to monitoring position.

I DO wish these stands were adjustable, but c'est la vie.

Good move.

.
Old 15th September 2011
  #4
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Any more opinions?
Old 15th September 2011
  #5
Gear Head
 

I would sort the stands out first. I've got my monitors on DIY hardwood stands. They provide much better isolation than having them on the desk. Being able to reposition them to your liking is also a great boon. They also look really nice.
Old 15th September 2011
  #6
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I built my stands out of cinder blocks painted black. Works great
Old 15th September 2011
  #7
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matt thomas's Avatar
Draw up some plans. Go to a metal worker. Have him make them out of steel (maybe get suggestions on optimising costs, sometimes some diameters of tubing are better value than others for instance). Get them powder coated.

You should get the best design for you needs this way, and reasonable cheap.

Matt
Old 15th September 2011
  #8
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by matt thomas View Post
Draw up some plans. Go to a metal worker. Have him make them out of steel (maybe get suggestions on optimising costs, sometimes some diameters of tubing are better value than others for instance). Get them powder coated.
fill them with sand
Old 15th September 2011
  #9
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matt thomas's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq View Post
fill them with sand
Yeah, I was going to say that but forgot. You should probably heat the sand up first in your oven to dry it. Let it cool before putting it in the stands.

Remember to leave a hole for putting the sand in in the design. And a design that will hold it..

matt
Old 15th September 2011
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq View Post
fill them with sand
.

Plus one.

.
Old 16th September 2011
  #11
Frees up desk space!
Old 16th September 2011
  #12
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YES! Decoupling your monitors from the desk will make a very large difference to your frequency response and stereo imaging.

Advice on stands would be make sure they are solid and tall enough, or at least height adjustable!
Old 16th September 2011
  #13
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What would be my local metal worker? Any big name shops that do it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkRB View Post
Advice on stands would be make sure they are solid and tall enough, or at least height adjustable!
and how do I go about finding how high they should be?
Old 16th September 2011
  #14
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoRillo View Post
and how do I go about finding how high they should be?
General guideline is tweeters around ear height. so it sort of depends on what speakers you will be using and what their orientation is.
Old 16th September 2011
  #15
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thepilgrimsdream's Avatar
 

I here so much about someone sticking an expensive heavy mic on a cheap stand and it falling over.

If you have 57s, 58s, who cares. But when your sticking your LDC and ribbons, i would get a serious stand
Old 16th September 2011
  #16
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Zep Dude's Avatar
 

Middle Atlantic makes affordable stands you can fill with sand. This makes an audible difference. Measure your ear height while seated and this should be the center of your monitor. Measure down from your ear height by half your monitor height and that's your stand height. Then account for some foam or rubber under the monitor, so go lower by another inch. You can cut the middle attlantic pieces down before assembly then use screws to attach the top and bottom pieces... Or build your own. As long as they're filled with sand you'll be fine so don't sweat the design or materials too much.

Desks and shelves resonate and color the sound. Stands (sand filled) will be a nice improvement.
Old 16th September 2011
  #17
Registered User
Consider concrete - blocks or pipe. The heavier the better.

It's Newtons 3rd law ... any action has an equal and opposite reaction. When your woofer cone thrusts forward, the speaker box wants to thrust backwards. This cancels out the intended effect of the cone moving air in the correct direction.

If you mount your speaker on a flimsy stand (and most commercial stands are flimly by design, because they can't afford the cost of building and shipping heavy ones) then you get a leverage effect. This leverage effect is probably worse than sitting your speakers on your desk.

So unless you end up with a more stable arrangement, it could be worse.

Stands may (or may not) allow you to place the speakers in the optimum position. Most people have speakers too far apart by far ... which gives a stretched/empty-in-the-middle stereo image. If moving from desk to stands, make sure you aren't making this worse too.

The worst thing about sitting on a desk is the large reflective surface ... but if your speakes are right on the edge, this isn't a problem. In the past i've used computer desks that have a top shelf that is less deep than the table top, and they are not bad for near fields.
Old 16th September 2011
  #18
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Do things like cement not cause bad reflections?
Old 16th September 2011
  #19
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Greg Curtis's Avatar
 

I use these Sound Anchors stands. They hold Genelec 1032 or NS-10s equally well. They are awesome.

http://www.soundanchors.com/page9.html
Old 16th September 2011
  #20
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoRillo View Post
Do things like cement not cause bad reflections?
Depends. Concrete pipes introduce beautiful Diffusion that can improve the acoustics of the whole room. George Martin was an expert on using acoustics to his benefit, and he famously changed the echo chambers at Abbey Road by bringing in concrete sewer pipes for exactly this reason.

Convex = good. Concave = bad.

Steel stands (especially if not filled with sand) can ring like a bell ... I generally hate steel studio in the studio. The concentrate EMI too ... you'll notice that hum in guitars and mics gets stronger as you get close to a steel stand ...

Concrete is an amazing material to consider when designing acoustic solutions ...

High mass is required to resist the reactive force ... concrete is cheap and heavy.
Old 16th September 2011
  #21
Lives for gear
What do you place between cement and your monitors? Don't wana scratch um up.
Old 16th September 2011
  #22
Registered User
Concrete and rubber go together like rum and coke.

Seriously - i've studied many books on acoustics and industrial noise suppression, and one recurring idea which I have used to good effect is the concept of sandwiching concrete and rubber to decouple vibrations.

To stop a physical vibration, you are dealing with Energy, and Energy is generally accepted as neither created nor destroyed but transformed from one type to another. So to remove unwanted vibrations, you need to turn them into heat. Absorbant materials, e.g. fibreglass, rubber, foam rubber etc turn physical movement into heat.

If you don't want something to move, you need to increase it's mass - or fix it to something with high mass. But that energy then goes somewhere else, so you need absorbants or elastomers in the equation to convert the movement into heat.

For example: if you have a large transformer or power amp that vibrates, you can sit this on a sandwich of concrete tiles with rubber in between, and this decouples it very well from the floor.
Old 16th September 2011
  #23
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thepilgrimsdream's Avatar
 

whoahh, monitor stands...not mic stands..haha woops.....
Old 18th September 2011
  #24
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hereticskeptic's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by RCM - Ronan View Post
General guideline is tweeters around ear height. so it sort of depends on what speakers you will be using and what their orientation is.
Is it tweeter at ear height, or mid-point between tweeter and woofer at ear height? Never sure about this one, but those few inches will make a big difference when determining monitor stand height, since most stands aren't adjustable.
Old 18th September 2011
  #25
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matt thomas's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoRillo View Post
What would be my local metal worker? Any big name shops that do it?
I mean a small local company, I used one near my house with 2 employees, they made steel coffee tables and chairs as their normal business. Look up metal workers, or furniture manufacturers in your yellow pages (directory).

Matt
Old 18th September 2011
  #26
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steffmo View Post
A while ago we built monitor stands out of PVC pipe and flanges.
This is a really good idea. Filled with sand, of course. The advantage is that you can just buy the stuff off the shelf and cut and glue them yourself - quick and easy. Concrete is hard to work with, but if you are lucky and can use a standard size pipe then you can just paint them and maybe stuff them with some foam.

I just don't like the idea of steel filled with sand. Steel rusts, and it's hard to perfectly dry sand.
Old 19th September 2011
  #27
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Zep Dude's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hereticskeptic View Post
Is it tweeter at ear height, or mid-point between tweeter and woofer at ear height? Never sure about this one, but those few inches will make a big difference when determining monitor stand height, since most stands aren't adjustable.
Midpoint. You want arrival time between divers equal. Did I say tweeters? If so I was thinking of my Adams which have the tweeter in the center.
Old 19th September 2011
  #28
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Zep Dude's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi View Post
This is a really good idea. Filled with sand, of course. The advantage is that you can just buy the stuff off the shelf and cut and glue them yourself - quick and easy. Concrete is hard to work with, but if you are lucky and can use a standard size pipe then you can just paint them and maybe stuff them with some foam.

I just don't like the idea of steel filled with sand. Steel rusts, and it's hard to perfectly dry sand.
You can find lots of good DIY speaker stand designs online. PVC is a common design (using 3 pipes for stability) and since they're curved they are good diffusors. You can stuff plastic trashbags into your wood, steel or PVC design then fill with sand to prevent any leakage, erosion etc.

From there experiment with how you couple the speakers to the stands (direct, foam, rubber, cones) and how you couple the stands to the floor. There are a lot of conflicting theories of coupling vs decoupling and a lot of it comes down to your room construction (resonant floor=decouple, solid floor=couple).

I generally like some foam rubber between the speakers and stands, sand filler and then a solid connection to the floor.

You don't have to over think it , because even a simple sand filled design will audibly improve your bass and general imaging.
Old 19th September 2011
  #29
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Old Goat's Avatar
 

PVC pipe glues to toilet flanges, screwed to plywood bases wide enough to keep your monitors upright, fill with sand. Dollar store mouse pads on top to sit monitors on, job done.
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