Studio monitors are a key piece of equipment to have in your music studio. Any amateur to professional level studio should have a pair of monitors to reference audio on. Technology being what it is, there are many options available today that can suit your needs.
Do you get overwhelmed by the huge selection? We did the homework for you so you can make an easier purchase. Read our list below to see which monitors made the cut on our list of Top Studio Monitors.
Focal Solo6 BE
This pair of studio monitors is the first ton our list for a reason. They are compact, well balanced, and incredibly precise. They translate so clearly due to Focal’s kickass design. The 6.5″ mid-woofer produces fullness in the midbass without compromising the midrange.
In addition, the 1″ inverted dome tweeters are made of Beryllium making them capable of wide frequency response. As wide as the Nile? Maybe. Once you hear them you may find yourself floating down the river too.
The final touch is the port on the front for the bass. It extends the bass to feed you some punch, even at the smaller speaker size. The secret is the 250 Watt amplifier in each monitor, enough power to pack a punch.
Genelec monitors are the sexy speakers you wish you could afford, but couldn’t until now. Industrial designer Harri Koskinen put his signature influence on these masterful monitors. Every M040 monitor is a piece of art, and a piece of audio professionalism. They bring fair pricing and premium performance to a new level.
With them you get the power of the Directivity Control Waveguide which sounds like something from Back to the Future. It definitely feels that way when looking at and using these insane monitors. Like the previous list item, these monitors also utilize a laminar port design fro the bass. Booms and Wubs will never be hard to find.
Neumann KH 120
The same company that makes legendary microphones has produced this pair of studio monitors. Microphones and speakers are essentially the same hardware, utilized in different ways. It’s only natural for Neumann to have expanded into this area, and they proved themselves far more than worthy here.
The KH 120 A is designed with a Mathematically Modeled Dispersion waveguide to best combine acoustic and electronic simulation. If you’ve always lusted over Neumann microphones you could get the next best thing with their monitors.
Dynaudio LYD 5 / LYD 8
Dynaudio is a mainstay in the studio monitoring arena, and their LYD setup carries the legacy. Their reference systems are no-nonsense and this prosumer pair doesn’t compromise on quality. 50-watt amplifiers power the same hardware used in their higher-end gear.
Straightforward and simple, the only adjusting you need to do with these monitors are the three acoustic switches on the back for adjusting to your room. Choose whichever suits your layout the best and get to it.
Equator Audio D5
The Equator D5 studio monitors prove that big things come in small packages. The compact design allows for an affordable yet slapping set of speakers. These speakers utilize an in-woofer design meaning that the tweeter shares a cone space with the subwoofer. This saves space and allows for the cost to be even more affordable for the tech inside.
It boasts a killer frequency response from 53 hZ to 20 kHz, and the front-ported bass means you can place them close to walls without sub-buildup. Account for the acoustic placement switches and you’ve got yourself a mighty set of monitors.
Event 20/20 BAS
The 20/20 BAS near-field monitor changed the game when first released in 1995. The company utilized dynamic internal components that revolutionized how monitor construction was done. It boats high volume output at lower distortion amounts and it has unparalleled dynamics.
The speaker design maintains the transducer’s design and power output. The newest version has improved amplifiers, cabinet bracing and its entire construction was revamped.
The A7X are Adam Audio’s award-winning nearfield monitors. They are some of the best speakers available in their price range. They offer incredible versatility, and are supremely balanced. We’re talking one-leg-on-a-wire-in-a-wind-tunnel kind of balance.
They have stereo localization that gives you the upperhand when mixing and mastering. They are so good sounding they will make you want to create more music.
Yamaha HS Series
The white woofer is an icon in the world of professional audio, and it represents far more than the pristine quality of the Yamaha HS Series. While the image itself is a symbol, its origins are from these legendary monitors.
These speakers were designed to be the most balanced reference possible. They are unforgiving in any way, and terribly unflattering. They don’t let you fool yourself and all for the better. Not much can be said about these speakers that hasn’t been before. If you want a set of monitors that is honest about how your stuff sounds, look no further.
JBL LSR 305 / LSR 308
JBL’s LSR series monitors are a steal and an underrated pair of studio monitors. These sleepers are sometimes overlooked because JBL has such a focus on live sound reinforcement but take a peek. The monitors take advantage of JBL’s specialized waveguide for producing extreme detail and depth in your monitoring setup. That curvalicious spot where the tweeter sits allows for a wider stereo field for listening in, and it looks pretty cool.
Presonus Eris E5
PreSonus also works in the live sound realm but they don’t lack anything on the studio side of things either. Their Eris series is awesome, but the E5 series is probably the smallest you’ll want to go with for a studio setup. Have no fear though, even at this end of the spectrum these speakers represent.
The speakers provide true clarity due to their Kevlar woofer design. This reflects energy so there are fewer delayed reflections and you can have an accurate sound. On the back of the speakers, you’ll see an encouraging amount of controls to adjust for acoustic spaces. Set wall distance and adjust the two-band EQ to get ready, and adjust the low-cut filter if you want to integrate a subwoofer.
KRK Rokit 6
KRK Rokit 6’s are a staple of the professional and bedroom studio. They are known by their classic yellow dome which is nearly as iconic as the Yamaha white dome. These speakers are noticeably heavier in the bass area, but remain faithful and transparent.
KRK uses proprietary amplifier technology that allows for more power to the amps. This makes sure that regardless of their size the speakers SLAP. They’ll make you want to only make bass-heavy music. Not really, but they are amazing!
IK Multimedia iLoud Micro Monitor
While on the smaller side, the iLoud Micro Monitors are designed for smaller spaces in mind. They feature 3″ neodymium drivers that produce a frequency response from 55 Hz – 20 kHz. What they may lack in size they make up for in good sound and smart design.
These speakers are small enough to fit into a backpack or suitcase and take with you anywhere you go. Also, they are connectable by bluetooth so you don’t have to worry about forgetting your auxiliary or USB cable.
Mackie HR624 mk2
Mackie is yet another player in the live sound industry that comfortably makes products fr studio use. Their pair of HR624 monitors boast significant improvements over the first iteration that were highly popular. A cast aluminum baffle and internal cabinet damping make these speakers sound tight and precise.
These speakers are also THX pm3-certified so they are excellent for use in video and film post-production. The 6.7″ low-distortion woofer and 1″ titanium dome tweeter make you feel like you’re in the speakers themselves.
Avantone Pro Active Mixcubes
The Avantone Mixcubes are a staple in the recording industry. Their simple design makes them easy to use and easy to blend into any studio setup. These cubes produce sound with minimal bass response so you can hear what it sounds like on other bass-challenged systems.
AC Worldwise Star Wars Family
The Force is strong with these comical speakers. While they are not recommended for high-quality audio referencing they sure are a lot of fun. They can double as memorabilia for your nerdy desk or just casual listening speakers. They pack a 10 watt subwoofer into them to give a little punch, and are connectable by bluetooth.
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