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first studio monitor

Discussion in 'Monitoring / Headphones' started by masterdeeno, Aug 21, 2014.

  1. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    I'm looking to buy my first studio monitor to be connected to my Behringer mixer. I am currently using an active EV loudspeaker to playback my music, but I figured it has its own EQ that kind of masks the output from my source. I also have a monitoring headphone, but I find it very uncomfortable if mixing/mastering songs for more than 4 hours. Anyway, I am looking at either Samson Mediaone BT3 or Mackie CR3. I didn't find much info from the web, and so I was wondering if any of you could provide feedback. They both sell under $100 for the pair. Since they are for studio monitoring, I want to buy the one that would produce a much clearer (true to sound) output, that way I can only concern myself to treating the sound via the EQ from either the software or the Behringer. Thank you.
  2. Josh Conley

    Josh Conley Active Member

    i may be in the minority, but my philosophy on gear is: you get what you pay for.
    buy the best you can afford, or better if they will extend you a credit line ;)

    learn to use it well.
    reference reference reference
    make the best you can with what youve got.

    the name on the front is irrelevant
  3. Josh Conley

    Josh Conley Active Member


    DO NOT buy 100$ monitors
    wait until you have 1000$
  4. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    "They both sell under $100 for the pair. Since they are for studio monitoring, I want to buy the one that would produce a much clearer (true to sound) output, that way I can only concern myself to treating the sound via the EQ from either the software or the Behringer. Thank you."


    $100 a pair? You're kidding, right? How about $1000.... each?

    Why is it that everyone new to this craft wants and expects a professional sound, or as you put it "a true clear sound"....yet they aren't willing to pay for it, or accept the fact that in order to get good sound, you have to use GOOD GEAR??

    Look, nothing worth anything good in this business is cheap. You're gonna get what you pay for. A $100 gear investment is chump change. It's even lower than that. It's the price that most of us here pay for a pair of good speaker cables.

    Your recording rig will only ever sound as good as your weakest link does. Save your money and look at a REAL pair of studio reference monitors.

    Get serious about it, and then we'll talk.

    In the future...
    Please...don't say you are "mastering". You're not mastering.... Not while using headphones and a $500 Behringer mixer in your basement or bedroom, anyway. You have no accurate sense of what your sonics are doing and how your room is reacting and you're "mastering"? Uhm.... no. You may be "mixing" - or trying to mix - using headphones - but you're definitely not mastering.
    There are professional ME's here. Try to not offend them by claiming to do the same thing that they do while stating in the same breath that you are looking at investing $100 for monitors.

  5. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    Thanks, I have heard the saying "you get what you pay for" many times, but I'm not convinced by it in many levels. Some gears you pay for their name and not quality and I noticed that what's good in my ear might be bad for others. I agree with you that I need to learn how to use it to get the best out of it.
  6. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    How is $1000 speaker better than $500 and how is $500 better than $100? Or are you saying brand+price means quality?
  7. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    Thanks for the reply and I apologize if I offended you when I said mastering. Obviously, I am in the beginning stage of mastering and that's why I'm looking to take a further step from headphone to cabinet. I didn't ask to compare a $100 speaker vs $1000 speaker, but since you opened that conversation, may I ask you why you think the $1000 speaker is better than the $50? Is it the brand? Is it the quality over time? Do you hear more from 1K speaker than 50? If you do, is it because of the frequency range, setup, noise, power, etc?
  8. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    i like the Mackies best but if i were you i would go for which ever ones i could get cheaper ..... have you checked out Behringers? maybe they make monitors that will match up to your mixer better?
  9. Makzimia

    Makzimia Active Member

    I'll be your huckleberry. What happens is, when you pay the sort of money you are talking about is lack of cabinet quality as well as speaker. Cheaper connectors, cheaper wire, solder and on and on. Bad overall frequency response separation. We all here (I'm not in the highest end at all), have lo fi speakers, that we rely on to know what the average Joe Smo hears through. These days even less hi fi if on earbuds too of course. It is true that some brand names mean more $ without necessarily meaning = to cost.

    Generally speaking some prudent research will tell you what are favoured speakers for monitoring. Environment is more important than almost anything, you will never convince the average user of that, but they hear the result of these masters doing their thing.

    Keep in mind if a brand is popular with people that know what they are doing, they usually do the job intended from them. If they didn't they wouldn't be used for long, and the company making them would be out of business in that range. Hope that helps somewhat. I am down the bottom of the middle in what I spend, so I can make suggestions. First one would be to look and see if somewhere will extend you say interest free credit ie: Sweetwater over 24 months.


  10. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    Thanks Kurt. I'm thinking the same thing about Mackies, simply because they made better loudspeakers. Hoping that they didn't make crappy starter kit. Re: Behringer, if I ever bump my budget up, I would consider KRK instead.
  11. Josh Conley

    Josh Conley Active Member

    i smell borderline trolling or cognitive dissonance, not sure which.

    component quality matters.
    circuit design matters.
    assembly matters.

    none of these have anything to do with labels. youre not buying jeans all made of the same denim and thread. far from it. get out of that mindset.

    go to guitar center.
    listen to and inspect their most expensive monitors, the wood, the connectors, the switches, how insanely heavy they are.
    then do the same with the 100$ speakers.

    you tell us the difference.
    bigtree likes this.
  12. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    Thanks Tony. I've dealt with Sweetwater and Zzounds before. Even SamAsh is giving me great deals on their studio monitors. The problem I have with any of them is the lack of try-before-you-buy policy, since they are online stores. Meaning, if I didn't like the sound of the speaker (which eventually will depend on my room acoustics), then I'm wasting my money for its return shipment - not once, twice maybe more. Anyway, the purpose of this thread is really to understand which product can I get most out of the $100. I have plans on upgrading it to a higher end down the road, but I just don't understand why would anyone pay more for monitor. If we are talking about loudspeakers (which is used for the main output), then I would understand the need of higher end, but for monitoring it's a bit edgy for me. For example, if you are to release your own music to the general public 80% of those listeners are on a consumer-grade speakers. Will they still be able to distinguish the music made from high-end studio monitor, from mid-range or from low-end (esp if their loudspeaker is on the high-end)? Will the high-end studio monitor provide additional benefits on top of having a good mic to record live sound (guitar, drums, vocals, etc)?
  13. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    $100 for monitors, go get a soundblaster with an aux in and use that until your are able to upgrade. There is nothing Pro Audio in the price range even considering.
    ClarkJaman likes this.
  14. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    i am sorry if you felt that i'm trolling. maybe, i was misunderstood for initially asking which $100 speaker to buy. you were the one who told me to save 1K and buy a more expensive speaker without providing additional info to support your case. i just thought you had an experience of using low-ends and still ended up going to high-ends and so I asked the question if you had experience between low, mid and high studio monitors.
  15. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    does studio monitor really have to be loud? or at a certain range where you can hear the music clearly. i just don't want to be mistaken for wanting studio monitors vs loudspeakers.
  16. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

  17. masterdeeno

    masterdeeno Active Member

    wasnt it more of sensitivity rating for studio monitors - like 95db per 1w?
  18. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

  19. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Well-Known Member

    Mackies or alesis monitor one are decent options, a bit more money, but having used both they are worth the money, I've heard a lot worse for mire expensive. Something w a 5 or 6" woofer should be a good first step. As you gain a better feel for it all, you'll know what you want, out of a better higher priced upgrade set. Between micing and mixing and eqing and basic room acoustics, a set of speakers like this should be fine.

    While the accuracy is basically a non issue in this situation, I'd say just pick the ones your favorite stuff sounds best on. The comment "I never knew that was In that song!" Is a sure fire good thing, with regards to clarity, and detail. Hopefully this happens to you. It'll get you used to mixng on 'monitors' where they aren't necessarily designed to be entertaining, they present music in a different style than other speakers.
    masterdeeno likes this.
  20. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    Okay masterdeeno, Stop with the technobabble since you know absolutely nothing. You know nothing, absolutely nothing. You don't know what's good. You don't know it's bad. You've only known what you read about is marketing blather. And when you start using the wrong techno-speak lingo colloquial speak, it impresses no one that actually knows what you're not talking about. Now you might think this answer rude and curt, which it is. We don't purchase $100 monitors to use as critical reference sources. They are used to make sure that your mixes through the $1000 monitors will play nicely on virtually anything like $100 monitors.

    Of course wearing headphones for 4+ hours isn't comfortable. They're not supposed to be. Because you're wearing the wrong headphones. You're wearing the $20 headphones. And we don't usually record and mix, with headphones. Unless you are doing an on location broadcast production without a control room, with loud PA speakers blaring just feet from ya. Got that? Good.

    What's the difference between the $100 monitors and the $1000 monitors? About $900 difference in quality that's what. Kind of like the difference between your moped and a Harley.. Though they both seem to still have two wheels? Imagine that?

    So... how many newspapers do you have to deliver before you can afford something to record with? Maybe about 20 years? It will cost you 20 years. Maybe even 30 years? Because the equipment costs as much as a house. Not one made from Lego. Or tinker toys.

    Now there's nothing wrong with your Behringer. You're just going to need 10 SHURESM-57 & 58 which will set you back about one grand i.e. $1000, just for the microphones to plug into your high-quality Behringer. Enough to record a band all at once. And the microphone stands. And the microphone cables. And the microphone snake. And the custom headphone monitoring system with plenty of headphones to go around.

    Next stop, the other important ancillary equipment like cheap DBX and Behringer dynamic range limiters/compressors. Since your Behringer might have a digital effects device built-in? You might not need that Eventide Harmonizer H-3000 nor Lexicon 480, PCM 90/80/70/60? Because the Behringer should be as good as that. LMAO NOT!

    Obviously, what I'm saying is, don't bother to swap out your monitor speakers. Your Electro-Voice Whatever's are perfectly fine. If you really learn what they sound like. Which you do by playing back the top recordings by the top hit making groups recorded by the top producers and engineers. Generally nothing from the 21st century but from the late 20th century. Like Michael Jackson. Like Earth Wind and Fire. And when you listen to those recordings through your Electro-Voice goodies? It'll tell ya what ya need to know. It'll tell ya what your stuff is supposed to sound like through those Electro-Voice ditties. You'll then have a reference to work from. No matter how good or awful they might be, they'll be a reference when you start with the proper reference material to listen to first.

    With the money you'll save, not wasting your money on crappy replacement speakers costing what? $100 for the pair or $100 each? I don't care. It's a dumb purchase. Better you should buy a SHURE, SM-58 with an additional foam pop filter. And if ya don't get that foam pop filter? Then you probably also don't know how to wipe your own ass.

    Do you want to learn from real professionals? Or do you want to learn from other 15-year-olds like yourself? I'm sorry... I meant 16. I didn't want to be rude. Right LMAO! Yes I did! So there is truth in advertising here.

    What am I some kind of joker or something? I absolutely am. I've done standup comedy in addition to garnering 4 major music award nominations and 20 years spent with NBC Television and Radio, as one of their top audio people. But I started just like you did. Using a handful of cheap, consumer, home stereo equipment like Sony tape recorders, RadioShack microphones and RadioShack low impedance to high impedance transformer adapters, used both forwards and backwards. Because you can. Hell... when I was only 17, had no money and no equipment. This is what I had. This is what I did.

    I had a cheap Electro-Voice 636, omnidirectional dynamic microphone. Which was balanced XLR out. I took its output via a $10 RadioShack low impedance to high impedance adapter transformer thingy. I plugged that into a cheap RadioShack cassette deck. I put a blank tape in and hit record pause. I took the output of the RadioShack cassette deck and plug that into a $50, five band, BSR, graphic equalizer. I took the output of the graphic equalizer and plug it into a Sony cassette deck, that had a built-in limiter. I put the tape in and hit record pause. I then took the output of that Sony cassette deck and plug it into the line level input of my Sony TC-250 Tape Coder. To use for a voiceover and singing recording signal chain. Never once rolling any of those cassette tapes in those decks. Putting them in record pause was the only way to get audio to pass through. And all I had was a pair of 6 inch RadioShack speakers in a small wooden box. And then I listened to reference recordings, made by the hit makers, to adjust my hearing to my monitoring system. Which cost all of $50. But that was 1972. From there I worked my way up.

    My next acquisition was a pair of SHURE M-67, 4 microphone input, 1 line level output, used mixers. I needed 2 for stereo. And to accommodate up to eight microphones. And then I got the Sony TC-630 stereo tape recorder so now I could also have tape echo. And then I bought a pair of Hammond reverb springs for $10 each. And powered those from the speaker outputs from the Sony TC-630 power amplifier outputs. And then I bought a second five band $50 graphic equalizer. I was really flying now. As I moved up to having two, 8 inch, wide range, RadioShack speakers and enlarge to the hole on my speaker boxes. Now I had some really high-quality monitors LOL.

    But above all, I listened to the top hit making recordings. That's what told me all that I needed to know or need to hear. And for folks to tell me you can't learn how to make good recordings that way? I guess they never learned how themselves? That's why they tell everybody you can't do that. They never figured it out for themselves. You listen. If you listen into and carefully. You'll get it. Otherwise maybe you should just be running a Good Humor truck and jingling your bells? I said your bells! Not your balls. It takes balls to jingle bells. Let's just be clear about that LOL.

    I'll take a strawberry shortcake.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
    Donny Bahama likes this.
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