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5-inch Powered Studio Multimedia Monitor Speakers (pair)
Every studio, be it a professional recording studio or just a home studio, needs a good set of monitor speakers, with a flat frequency response so you can hear exactly what the recording will sound like. If this describes your own needs, then you should get a pair of these 5-inch Powered Studio Monitor Speakers from Monoprice!
These speakers are professional quality studio monitors, designed to produce a flat frequency response for studio recording, mixing, and mastering duties. Each speaker is separately powered, is bi-amped with two dedicated amplifiers, and uses both balanced XLR and balanced/unbalanced TRS/TS audio input paths.
The tweeter is a 1" silk dome design with magnetic shielding for a flat frequency response and accurate musical reproduction. The woofer is a 5" DuPont™ Kevlar® fiber cone with magnetic shielding, rubber surround, and a high-temperature voice coil, for long hours of high volume work.
Each monitor enclosure includes two separate power amplifiers totaling 70 watts of music power. A 30 watt amplifier is used to drive the tweeter, while a 40 watt amp drives the woofer. This use of dual amplifiers ensures that each driver has the power it needs without compromising the output of the other driver, ensuring that the audio output remains crisp, clean, loud, and distortion free at all times.
A four-position selector switch on the back of each speaker allows you to adjust the high-frequency bias, with either a -2dB, -1dB, Flat, or +1dB shelving of frequencies above 2000 Hz. The purpose of this circuitry is to adjust the high-frequency response to the characteristics of the room being used. In a "bright" musical environment, an attenuation of the high frequencies is needed to produce a flat frequency response, while a more sound absorbent environment may require a boost of the high-frequencies to achieve a flat overall response.
- 2x 5-inch powered studio monitor speakers
- 2x AC power cord (IEC 60320 C13 to NEMA 5-15)
- 1x User's manual
|Speaker Type||2-way Near-Field Studio Reference Monitor Speakers|
|LF Amplifier||40 watts continuous|
|HF Amplifier||30 watts continuous|
1 XLR connector for balanced connections and 1 TRS connector
for balanced and unbalanced TRS and TS connections
|Input Impedance||10k ohms unbalanced, 20k ohms balanced|
|Sensitivity||90dBA output SPL at 1 meter with 85mV pink noise input|
|Woofers||5" Kevlar® cone with high-temperature voice coil and magnetic shielding|
|Tweeters||1" silk dome with magnetic shielding|
|Frequency Response||56 Hz ~ 22 kHz|
|S/N Ratio||> 100dB (typical, A-weighted)|
|HF Level||Switchable, -2dB, -1dB, Flat, or +1dB boost to frequencies above 2000 Hz|
|Power Requirements||100 ~ 120 VAC, 50/60 Hz|
|Power Cable||IEC 60320 C13 to NEMA 5-15|
|Dimensions (HxWxD)||10.0" x 6.9" x 7.8" (254 x 176 x 198 mm) each|
|Weight||9.7 lbs (4.4 Kg) each|
- User's Manual (Dec 28, 2012)
DuPont™ and Kevlar® are trademarks or registered trademarks of E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company.
Questions and Answers
I have used these for about 1.5 months, and have taken the time to really judge these monitors, as I felt these monitors are not as well documented around the web. People who utilize monitors, for a purpose such as mixing, tend to be really into expensive gear. A lot of the time good audio gear does cost a lot of money, but we are starting to some great cheap stuff.
Notice how I referenced mix engineers using these? Let's take a second to explain why that is important. It is said that if you were to average out the frequency response of all the speakers being used, you would get a flat line. Why would you want to mix with a flat frequency response? It is a reference. This means that anyone mixing at a flat frequency response has a much higher chance at their mix being able to translate to other speakers well. It's because of this that it's extremely important to mix (track, produce, master) with monitors, baring a flat frequency response.
You shouldn't expect to plant these monitors into your room and have them deliver. Your room takes that flat response and colors it. It's because of this fact that most audio professionals and serious hobbyists treat their room. This is a major topic to learn about, and if you care for a truly flat response and your work translating well to the most amount of speakers as possible, then you should take the time to look into treating your room. Maybe you are reading this at a time when Monoprice has their "Acoustic Treatment & Foam" subcategory up and running with more than a mud guard, (AKA isolation shield & reflection filter) and you can take advantage of their awesome quality standard and even more awesome pricing. That'd be even better.
In my room, treated as best as I could get it, these monitors were doing a decent job. It's extremely difficult to get that truly great flat response without calibrating, and I definitely suggest calibrating, even without treating your room. The most notable problem with the response was a pretty big drop off between 100Hz and 200Hz. One speaker lost a lot more in that range than the other, although both dipped. If you do not treat your room or calibrate, you should at least throw a bell between those frequencies, evening out things with an EQ using your ears. Another thing to note is that the high frequency knob did come in handy before calibration. You want to get that line was close to flat as possible before calibration.
Coupled with IK Multimedia ARC System 2, an advanced room correction kit for use in your DAW (Reaper, Pro Tools, Audacity, Cubase, GarageBand, etc), I was able to get these monitors to really shine. I got the frequency response nice and flat, at which point I could mix for maximum compatibility and effectively emulate the EQ characteristics of the kind of speakers people popularly listen through (Car, laptop, headphones, iPod dock, TV) to see how my mixes would effectively translate.
These monitors do not stand out as much better than similar priced monitors, out of the box, when going by the 300 dollar compare price. I have compared them with the most popular 300 dollar monitors, and they are extremely similar. However, by the price these go for and the prices they go on sale at quite often, these things are a steal out of the box. Couple that with a properly treated room, and you will kill monitors at double the compare at price in a room not properly treated. Add in great room correction, such as ARC 2, and you will be getting a lot more than what you paid for.
I give these monitors a BIG 10 for maximizing utility, meaning they are the best bang for your buck.
Thanks for reading,
PROS: Incredible sound for the price. Relatively high powered, bi-amped speakers. Apparently Monoprice did not intend these as computer speakers but they are excellent.
CONS: Requires some creativity with cabling.
PROS: fast set up
great sound for the money
CONS: for the price....none
only reason they are not 10 is because I have heard 1000+ monitors.
Besides the bright blue LED, I liked the simple low-key look and feel of the monitor speakers.
I'm sure people with better hearing than me have extolled the audio quality enough so I'll skip that.
Recently, one of two speakers suddenly would not power on and my reason for the low review score it's short lifespan.
However, I bought these expecting some measure of longevity and was disappointed for one speaker to fail after only light/moderate use (perhaps a dozen hours a week tops) from July 2013 to Feb 2015.
I understand that Monoprice has listed only a one-year warranty for this and that their product support in warranty is fantastic. However, I'm out of luck as I'm past that.
I want to warn potential buyers to consider the cost of time for products like this that may need replacement when making their purchasing decisions.
PROS: Build quality feels solid
CONS: Bright Blue LED for power on status
A bit lacking in low response
I set them up in my house, and did a test run, and they are truly flat. What does this mean? There are no frequencies boosted in the speakers themselves. They reproduce however the tracks were mixed. I've heard other monitors that cost more (KRK Rokits) that are supposedly flat, but clearly have low end being cut. I'll run a pink noise test to truly confirm.
The price simply can't be beat. If you go on any other musicians gear website, the cheapest monitor you can find with close to the same specs are: 1) M-Audio BX5 $299 - it doesn't have the HPF knob, and most reviews say they sound terrible.. 2) KRK Rokit 5 $149.50 each! - Remember I mentioned, that these really aren't flat. There are some low freqs that have been cut.
These Monoprice monitors are $165.78 for a pair are seriously have more features and better audio quality than many of ones out there that are twice the price!
Big thumbs up to Monoprice and I would highly recommend these to anyone looking for a some 5inch studio monitors!
PROS: 1) Price!
2) Sound Quality
3) Build and Features
PROS: Powerful with incredible sound separation
CONS: Separate power switches on rear can be awkward to access
(but a dedicated power bar solves this easily)
After that, I promptly ordered more and set up a surround sound system with them. Since the speakers are powered, I can run them directly from my computer with no receiver, so that saves some money.
Here's what I used to hook these up to my computer: 5611 (3.5mm stereo to RCA adapter) and 4777 (6ft RCA to XLR cable).
Setting up the surround system, I originally tried using long RCA cables, then a short RCA to XLR, but I got a lot of buzzing and noise, so I sent those back and got XLR cables instead.
PROS: Very clean and clear sound.
Comparable to $300+ speakers.
CONS: Some very slight noise if you put your ear close to the speaker. Not noticeable if you have the speaker more than a couple feet away.
For long cable runs (more than 5-10 ft), you will need to get decent XLR cables, which are a bit more expensive than RCA cables or regular speaker wire. If you don't, you'll probably pick up a lot of noise.
PROS: These monitor speakers are great and for the price. When I was looking for some monitor speakers for home recording setup I was originally looking at the M-Audio BX5 D2 for $299 and located these speakers with the same exact specs and etc.. So I took a chance purchasing these for $167.44 (pair) and got them home set them up and was Very! satisfied with the sound and quality of the speakers. Even suggestion to my friends if they are looking for these type of speakers to purchased them from Monoprice.com.
CONS: I have used the speakers now for a few weeks and have not found an issues.
I just put these in my living room and played some tracks against my swans 4.1 floorstanding speakers and they definitely held there own against them (with the swans probably 5x the size of these) I'd say these were more detailed and accurate while the swans were a bit more laid back and could get a bit better extension. Those are $700 retail speakers though powered by a 120 watt pc amp which really isn't fair. I'm more than happy with house these sound and I can't wait to find a good subwoofer to match them to which will. I don't really have anything else to compare them to and these are my first set of pro monitor speakers but I can't imagine they really get much better than this in the under 200 dollar range (maybe if you spend 500+).
PROS: *Accurate music reproduction
CONS: My wife doesn't like them on my desk (says it looks like a dorm room)
They don't have grills
Who cares though, they sound great
As far as connecting them I didn't quite know what I was getting into at first so I went with something I knew would work, a Hosa stereo breakout from Amazon and it arrived with a loose wire (still haven't heard back on the supposed lifetime warranty replacement). With speakers in hand, back to Monoprice to figure out a better solution! If you want to use RCA inputs into the speakers get: 7176 (two of them). If you want to use 3.5mm jack inputs: 7167 but you need a stereo breakout that I can't find on Monoprice NOT a splitter (you would end up with two left channels with 667). I went the RCA route so in addition to the two 7176, I also got a 5611 with a couple 6303. With this type of combo you can get what ever length RCA cables you need. You could instead go with a 5599 and split the two cables apart as needed. I really wanted the fancy 9300 but it won't work with these speakers because you can't split the cables at the RCA end. You could also do like one of the other reviews mentioned with the 5611/4776 combo but you don't really need the XLR connectors since you aren't using a balanced signal at that point anyway.
I hope this helps others so you won't have to worry about the connectivity. I've tried these with everything I can plug them into and they make anything sound awesome! The better the source input the more you will be wowed! Get these! You won't be disappointed! Monoprice rocks!
PROS: Outstanding sound!
CONS: Now that I have the connectivity figured out, no cons.