The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
PMC TB2S AII Monitors are amazing Studio Monitors
Old 28th August 2010
  #1
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
Thumbs up PMC TB2S AII Monitors are amazing

I finally got to hear the PMC TB2S AII monitors and I have to tell you I was blown away. Yes I know, you have heard this many times on gearslutz about different monitors, but damm, these monitors are the most detailed monitors I have ever heard. I was also able to compare them to the Focal Twins and the Event Opals. I had to pay money to do this test since the Opals had to be shipped to my friends studio but it was well worth the test.

First I need to say all 3 monitors are very very good. They all have something about them that make them special over the other two. I would be happy with any of these monitors in my studio.

Focal Twins are wonderful sounding monitors that have great top, mid, and low's. There is nothing missing with these monitors. They have better separation in the mid range than either the Event Opals or the PMC's. So you really can hear each instrument without other instruments or voices getting in the way. I loved them, and would be very happy with them (and the Solo's).

The Event Opals have the strongest bass (low) out of the 3. They go loud and the hiss was not an issue. On other threads they mentioned that Event updated the monitors to reduce the hiss. Not sure if this is true, but the hiss on the ones I heard were not an issue for me. Very different voicing compared to the Focal Twins. I would not say one is better than the other. But if you do dance music, or any music with thumping bass, I would choose these. Very detailed monitors, and the controls are wonderful. I would say they are a little smoother sounding while the Twins have a more clean/detail sound. So it's really a personal taste thing here guys. Me, I would rather have clean detail than smooth but there is really no right or wrong answer.

PMC TB2's clearly had the best overall soundstage, clarity and level of detail. The transient response of these monitors was mind blowing and a step up over the other two. The bass is there and it's enough for near field monitors. I would be sooo happy with them. In a pro studio you would want larger mid field monitors as well for louder and more kicking bass. The Focal Twins have more bass, and the Opals, a deeper richer bass. Both could be used for near and mid field monitors. I don't play or work with customers that record dance music or anything with a commercial pop drum machine sound. I work with rock, jazz, and classical. I clearly liked the PMC's the best. The clarity of everything was just amazing. The mid's though they are very good, don't provide the separation that the Twins offer. I would assume since the Twins are a 3 way and a dedicated mid range has some advantage. So I would say the Twins would be my 2nd choice.

The most frustrating thing in the States is the dealers do not carry the PMC TB2A SII in stock. So if you want to demo them, you can't. It really a shame that none of the dealers I tried had them in stock. They can get them, but they don't carry these monitors. I would really love to own the PMC over all of them. The bad news for me is price is too much for my wallet. The Solos which I also like are the best monitors in it's price range so I am trying to save money for them right now.
Old 31st August 2010
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
Wow over170 people read my post and not one comment. Has anyone else heard the new TB2S AII's, or am I the only one who thinks they are awesome! Shame on Vintage King for not even having one pair in stock.
Old 31st August 2010
  #3
Gear Maniac
 

I agree with you
Old 31st August 2010
  #4
Hey Tube World, good review and observations on all three monitors. For those interested I wrote a review on the Focal Twins here. Focal Twins Review 2010

I have not heard the Opals or the PMC's monitors yet. When looking to upgrade my monitors, I also experienced much frustration on trying to demo a pair of TB2S AII's in the States. I personally like the so called "British sound" myself and think I would love the PMC's monitors. Only after buying the Focal Twins, PCM had a dealer in the States contact me and advise I could demo a new pair. I am tempted to, but then at this point, even if I did like them better than the Twins, trying to sell my Twins and then get the PMC's would be a hassle and cost me more money. The Twins are a nice improvement over my Tannoy Precision 8D's with improved amps, design, and sound. They look better than most monitors too. The Twins 3 way design is so nice that I am now spoiled with the benifit of a dedicated mid range speaker. The wonderful separation of the instruments that you talked about is true and a plus over the PMC's. I can also hear the compression on tracks a lot better which helps me obtain more accurate control of transients on my tracks.

Regarding the Opals, many have shared similar opinions with yours on how they sound, and how they compare to the Twins. If your observations are accurate, I would also prefer the clear detail of the Twins over the smoother sound of the Opals.

Hello Hugh, hope all is well. If anyone wants more info on the PMC's, Hugh has done several great reviews on them in Sound on Sound magazine (TB2S-AII in July 2010 edition). He is the best audio reviewer in my book, and he has the technical background to back up what he says.
Old 31st August 2010
  #5
Lives for gear
 
PlugHead's Avatar
 

I'm not familiar with the TB2S AII's but own other PMC's and have heard the Focal Twins (and Solo 6's) but not the Opal's.

I am a fan of PMC's for their soundstage, clarity, and depth of resolution. They make a very fine monitor and with their transmission line design (ATL) provide incredible bass detail.

That said, I found the slight dip @ 150 hz (on my TB-1's) to be too unsettling for me and accurate mix decisions. I know there are other models with better specs etc., but - I also can't afford to step up into that league (YET!)

I like the Focals, and know I could mix with them, but - much like Genelec 1031's, I feel they are too squeaky clean for my aesthetic. For rock, I could see them being great, but less so for chamber, jazz, and all acoustic fare. Just my opinion, tho...

All in all, monitor preferences are really subjective so don't be surprised if you don't have more folks chiming in. PMC's (and ATC, Harbeth, K & H, etc., etc.,) are still widely unknown on this side of the pond, yet they are top drawer monitors. I'm not surprised PMC have little inventory for demos as they are not anywhere near as hot a seller as Mackie (once were), Event, Tannoy, etc. because most bedroom studios can't afford 5+ large (or MUCH more) for their monitors. Suffice to say - sometimes it's better to know what YOU like as opposed to what everyone else does...
Old 31st August 2010
  #6
Lives for gear
 
The MPCist's Avatar
 

I used to use TB2's and they're great for mixing. I'm sure these new MKII's are even better. What amps are they using these days? (Back in the day, I was using Bryston's with passive TB2's).
Old 31st August 2010
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
A couple of things I want to comment on.

1. Glenn, though the translation on the PMC's are amazing, the Twins focused sound and stronger bass may be the better overall monitor for a studio that has only one pair of monitors (that will be your near and mid field speakers). Based at looking at your web site revelationsoundstudio.com (I like your Manley gear by the way), the Twins are the only monitors in your studio. So don't feel too frustrated about not trying them out, as the Twins in my book would be a better choice for your setup. If you had some mid field monitors, I would go with the TB2S AII's for near field monitors. Hands down, that would be my choice. Yes I also read your review on the Focal Twins. It was the most informative review of the Twins I have read. You gave good information on the tweeter material, provided a good discription of its sound, and compared them to several other monitors. I also found the tweeters do break in after days of playing, making them sound more pleasant.

2. Yes I also really enjoy Hugh's reviews better than most, as he is not shy to speak his mind.

3. Plughead is correct about European monitors not being so available here. Harbeth are also another company that makes amazing monitors that are not so easily available in the States either.

4. The new PMC amps are class D amps that Hugh stated sound better than the flying mole amps that were on the previous TB2's.

We really have too many choices to choose from which is why there are so many threads on what is better this or that? Studios in the 1960's - 1990's basically just used the mic pre's, and EQ that was on the mixing board. Today we are all trying to get that sound of yesteryear. Most studios will have 2 or 3 hardware EQs, and compressors with lots of plug ins to boot. So every time there is a new compressor or EQ coming out each year, though many are amazing, and some may meet your needs better than what you currently have it can be overwhelming.
Old 2nd September 2010
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tube World View Post
A couple of things I want to comment on.

1. Glenn, though the translation on the PMC's are amazing, the Twins focused sound and stronger bass may be the better overall monitor for a studio that has only one pair of monitors (that will be your near and mid field speakers). Based at looking at your web site revelationsoundstudio.com (I like your Manley gear by the way), the Twins are the only monitors in your studio. So don't feel too frustrated about not trying them out, as the Twins in my book would be a better choice for your setup. If you had some mid field monitors, I would go with the TB2S AII's for near field monitors. Hands down, that would be my choice. Yes I also read your review on the Focal Twins. It was the most informative review of the Twins I have read. You gave good information on the tweeter material, provided a good discription of its sound, and compared them to several other monitors. I also found the tweeters do break in after days of playing, making them sound more pleasant.

We really have too many choices to choose from which is why there are so many threads on what is better this or that? Studios in the 1960's - 1990's basically just used the mic pre's, and EQ that was on the mixing board. Today we are all trying to get that sound of yesteryear. Most studios will have 2 or 3 hardware EQs, and compressors with lots of plug ins to boot. So every time there is a new compressor or EQ coming out each year, though many are amazing, and some may meet your needs better than what you currently have it can be overwhelming.
Tube World, thanks for your input. After working on several additional sessions with the Twins, I am confident that were the best choice for me. In regards to too many choices, I agree with you 100%. The good news is when you want to upgrade something, you will have a lot to choose from. The problem is doing a good investigation on your choices will consume a lot of your time for weeks.
Old 2nd September 2010
  #9
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PlugHead View Post
That said, I found the slight dip @ 150 hz (on my TB-1's) to be too unsettling for me and accurate mix decisions.
I believe that dip from the TB1 and early TB2S has been addressed in the current model.
Old 2nd September 2010
  #10
Lives for gear
 
PlugHead's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hugerr View Post
I believe that dip from the TB1 and early TB2S has been addressed in the current model.
Good news - they were in fact the early issue model, and that was the one (and only) issue I had with them.
Old 7th September 2010
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
I just received my Focal Solo's and they are a huge improvement from what I used previously. I am happy with them, the bass, mid's and high end detail is there. The problem is I like the TB2S AII's better, but they are way out of my price range. Hmmmm.
Old 8th September 2010
  #12
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tube World View Post
I just received my Focal Solo's and they are a huge improvement from what I used previously. I am happy with them, the bass, mid's and high end detail is there. The problem is I like the TB2S AII's better, but they are way out of my price range. Hmmmm.
Did you get a chance to try out the DB1?

It is a smaller yet equally awesome brother of the TB2. It's a smaller driver and smaller cabinet, making it better for smaller rooms - but it shares the 'PMC Sound' found in all their speakers from the DBs to the BBs.

I absolutely love them. Got passive ones hooked up to an MC2 amp and you can't ask for much more in a 5.5" driver!
Old 8th September 2010
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Mark D.'s Avatar
 

I heard the larger and smaller PMCs at AES NY. The larger only had the
advantage of more bass. The smaller with a sub would do fine, and are
more affordable. In some ways, the smaller woofers had more midrange
detail a smaller speaker can afford. Definitely worth testing, if you can.
Old 9th September 2010
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Teddy Ray's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tube World View Post
3. Plughead is correct about European monitors not being so available here. Harbeth are also another company that makes amazing monitors that are not so easily available in the States either.
Harbeths are easily accessible... Harbeth Speakers | Acoustic Sounds

I love K+H, ATC, and some PMC Models.

if yall want to see great speakers, turn your gaze away from pro audio, and look towards audiophile land..see what they are using.
Old 9th September 2010
  #15
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
After working in my studio for a couple days with the Focal Solo's I am very happy with them. Yes I like the TB2S better, but I saved almost $1,000 by getting the Solo's. I am sure if I got the TB2S, then I would say ah but the Focal Twins are better. Get the Twins, but the Adam S3X are better. Buy the Adams, and the Barefoots are better. You get the point.
The Solo's are great monitors and I would say the low end has a more solid sound over the PMC's. My mixes translate very well with them. I am a happy camper, but my praise for the Solo's are for another post.
Old 11th September 2010
  #16
Gear nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hugerr View Post
I believe that dip from the TB1 and early TB2S has been addressed in the current model.
I believe it hasn't or better said, it couldn't. This dip marks one of the trade off to the transmission line design. But it is so narrow in bandwith that in nearly all cases it doesn't cause any trouble (room modes are much more troublesome).

And to be clear, I really really like the design of the TB2 so much, that I designed my own "TB2DXT" (DXT as for the used tweeter by Seas).
And I have to say it's absolutly awesome.
Old 15th October 2010
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
Just wanted to update that I was able to find some money around and buy the Focal Sub 6 to work with the Solo's. After taking the time to crawl on my floor and find the right spot for the sub,I was very pleased with the full range of my monitors and I even like it better that the Twins on their own. Very pleased.
Old 21st October 2010
  #18
Finally got to hear TB2S AII's monitors. WOW they are really revealing, clean and detailed. I really like them very much. Not as much bass as my Focal Twins but there is enough bass for near field applications. Wish I could afford both. PMC is becoming one of my favorite company's.
Old 2nd December 2010
  #19
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
Smile

I like the Solo's that I purchased, but I still longed for the sound I heard out of the PMC's. So I sold my Solo's and have had the TB2s's in my studio for 3 weeks now. They are the best! Just love them, and my clients love the mix results on their music.
Old 5th December 2010
  #20
Gear interested
 

The PMC TB2S AII'S DS-001 mono amplifiers are built with Hypex SMSP400, UcD400OEM and HxR regulator with adjustable gain in a specific design.

I am pretty sure that the amplifier are largely responsable in the listening qualities of the Tb2S-AII.

I do like them so do i ! thumbsup
Old 5th December 2010
  #21
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tube World View Post
nderful sounding monitors that have great top, mid, and low's. There is nothing missing with these monitors. They have better separation in the mid range than either the Event Opals or the PMC's. So you really can hear each instrument without other instruments or voices getting in the way. I loved them, and would be very happy with them (and the Solo's).
From what I have heard, the Twins are hyping the upper midrange. Then its not a surprise that the mids are separated. But that's bad! I want to actually hear the muddiness. Also I heard the TBs2A (old) and the bass sounded weird. Like the mentioned 150 Hz dipp. Would cause very bad mix decisions.

Heard the Opals in the shop and the bass was too strong.

So three "bad monitors"!
Old 7th December 2010
  #22
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by HomeProducer View Post
From what I have heard, the Twins are hyping the upper midrange. Then its not a surprise that the mids are separated. But that's bad! I want to actually hear the muddiness. Also I heard the TBs2A (old) and the bass sounded weird. Like the mentioned 150 Hz dipp. Would cause very bad mix decisions.

Heard the Opals in the shop and the bass was too strong.

So three "bad monitors"!
From what you have heard, does that mean you heard them in your studio?

There is no muddiness unless you have recorded poorly. My recordings never have a muddy sound.

Regarding the TB2s' did you hear them in a room with bass traps?
Old 28th December 2010
  #23
Lives for gear
 

To nudge this thread in a slightly different direction for a moment... have any of you tried the passive PMC TB2s+?? There are some "still in the box" pairs available at a great price, and I'm wondering if they'll have all the love and clarity, etc. of the powered/active ones... I know the amp will make a difference, but I have some decent options in that regard...

thnx!!
Old 28th February 2011
  #24
Lives for gear
 
Tube World's Avatar
Still loving my PMC TB2S AII's.
Old 1st April 2011
  #25
Gear interested
 

totally amazing sound. so clear! beautiful. and warm, and true...

highly recommended!

a pleasure to listen to for hours on end.
Old 1st April 2011
  #26
Gear maniac
 
ArisA's Avatar
 

yaaaay, they are awesome. Working with my pair since about 1 month and i love em. Signal comes from a DAC1 and it sounds beautiful, rich and detailed! Ill never look back im sure!
Old 1st April 2011
  #27
Gear Head
 

Any advice versus the Dynaudio Air6 (I actually own a pair but I would like to switch for TB2S AII) ?

Thanks
Old 1st April 2011
  #28
Gear maniac
 
ArisA's Avatar
 

Hmm, i never worked with Dynaudio. I used to work with Genelec 1030A and Mackie HR824 and its a huge improvement! Lets say, the "next level" of monitor speakers imo that you can afford
Old 1st April 2011
  #29
Gear Head
 

Thanks Arisa !

I'm testing actually an old pair of TB1 with my Rotel Amp. It's not the perfect amp for sure but anyway... My Air6 seems to be more powerful with more impact on the kick for example, and more medium. The stereo image it's wider on the TB1 though.

I pretty sure it's not the same technology in the TB2S AII (better tweeter, better amp obviously...) but I'm little bit afraid if this sound is the PMC philosophy. I hope it's just because my amp sucks
Old 1st April 2011
  #30
Gear maniac
 
ArisA's Avatar
 

well of course i was thinking and checking this too. The question is why are the Active ones so expensive? Is it the hype heh or the amps which drive em?

those bryston amps which are recommended are not cheap. I think if you consider this, the amp is important, check which ones are recommended.

I did not have a chance to test the passive system tho.

I think on the mkii they designed own amp. If pmc designs own amps they must be great heh
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
DistortingJack / So much gear, so little time
17
sasha222 / Gearslutz Secondhand Gear Classifieds
10
Monobasser / Gearslutz Secondhand Gear Classifieds
1
wires / Low End Theory
4

Forum Jump
Forum Jump