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Best near-field monitors for under $200 (each)
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> General Gear Goto page 1, 2, 3  Next [all]
Author Best near-field monitors for under $200 (each)
booger
Long story short, I’ve recently had to move my studio to a different space and my monitors are now on my desk right in front of me. I have a set of older Event PS6 that do not have a near field setting. The size of the room is small, so I cannot roll my chair back far enough to properly hear the mix.


Changing the topic a little. I was initially looking at Behringer Truth monitors but now see a few others in the same price range. Probably looking to get a 4-5" as they will sit on the desk n front of me. Opinions and sage advice are appreciated!
Praxis
I have the 8" Kevlar version, which are surprisingly good value - even response throughout the frequency range and punchy bass. However, in my opinion they are too big for desktop speakers and need quite a bit of space to get the full benefit. Mine are on floor stands roughly 2 metres apart with my preferred listening position on the third angle of an equilateral triangle. As I said, they sound good, but not on a desk in a small space.
Panason
8 inch is probably too big for a small room.
booger
Praxis wrote:
I have the 8" Kevlar version, which are surprisingly good value - even response throughout the frequency range and punchy bass. However, in my opinion they are too big for desktop speakers and need quite a bit of space to get the full benefit. Mine are on floor stands roughly 2 metres apart with my preferred listening position on the third angle of an equilateral triangle. As I said, they sound good, but not on a desk in a small space.


The Truth 1030A is also available in a 5.25" version which might be better for a desk. The KRK 5 and Mackie MR524 looks interesting, too.
Praxis
I'm not sure of the difference between the 1030 and 2030, but most of the reviews I've read say that the 1031 and 2031 are a significant upgrade. As I said earlier, I went for the 1031 yellow Kevlar version and I'm very happy with them
Panason
I think you should check out other brands. Also, if they are going to have a wall close behind them you're probably better off with forward firing bass ports - according to what seems to be the consensus.
Funky40
JBL lsr305 mkI is awesome !
they were on clearout sale.
dependend on the country you might still find some.
i payed 99.- per box just 3 weeks back.

the mkII are now in the stores and should run also below or around 200.-$
also watch out the Adam T5V or so. Though i read/heard very contrary things about those.
TXBDan
The Yamaha HS5s and ADAM T5Vs should be in the race as well, from what i've gathered in my own research.
Moskowitz
I have been researching this for my thread asking about a small self-contained live rig for art gallery ambient.

From what I've read, the most highly thought of in this range are the KRK ROKIT 5 G3, the JBL 305P MkII, and the Mackie MR524 - all of which are priced at $150 ea for the 5" - the KRK has a 4" also, and they all have 6"/6.5" and 8" versions.

Opinions suggest that the KRK is a bit more powerful in the bass if that suits ones music, the Mackies and JBLs are rear ported if space is a concern, and the JBLs seem to have a small edge as far as imaging. Reading more deeply it seems that the differences are very slight, as one might suspect with an extremely modestly priced set of studio monitors from a reputable brand. I don't know what any of these sound like but they do seem to be the preferred choices by most people who bother to post an opinion. The JBLs appear to be the most popular.
Blairio
Equator D5's. Active, Dual Concentric (point source), compact and physically neat. KRK's tend to sound a bit 'hyped', while the D5's are more neutral. D5's also have a setting round the back you select according to how near the back wall you want to place them, or in open space.
flippantminister
I got a pair of the JBL 305P MkII a few months back for right under $300, and have been immensely satisfied. Best monitors I've ever owned, though I have admittedly never owned high end monitors. A friend of mine who does have high end monitors was pretty surprised by the JBLs though, he felt they were definitely outside of their price range in quality.
milkshake
JBL 305

Although they are not perfect, there's a bit of colouration in the 1.5K range and they lack depth of sound stage, they are speaker that people can live with for the rest of their lives.

Plus points are the huge sweet spot, due to their constant directivity, and pin point left to right separation. Imo if you can't make a decent mix on these, you just can't make a decent mix.

I got mine for $100 each.

Independant measurements.
DSP correction.
ngarjuna
Blairio wrote:
Equator D5's. Active, Dual Concentric (point source), compact and physically neat. KRK's tend to sound a bit 'hyped', while the D5's are more neutral. D5's also have a setting round the back you select according to how near the back wall you want to place them, or in open space.

I like the D5s too but Equator disappeared from the face of the earth about a year ago (a month after emailing me an ETA for purchasing more D5s). I'm not aware of anywhere one can buy new D5s; we certainly tried.

In this price range I like the JBL 305s too.
Blairio
ngarjuna wrote:
Blairio wrote:
Equator D5's. Active, Dual Concentric (point source), compact and physically neat. KRK's tend to sound a bit 'hyped', while the D5's are more neutral. D5's also have a setting round the back you select according to how near the back wall you want to place them, or in open space.

I like the D5s too but Equator disappeared from the face of the earth about a year ago (a month after emailing me an ETA for purchasing more D5s). I'm not aware of anywhere one can buy new D5s; we certainly tried.

In this price range I like the JBL 305s too.


That's a shame. The D5's are the first near field monitors I really got on with and I had plans to buy the larger ones. Hopefully the company and its employees will bounce back.
Panason
I went with Presonus Eris5 as they have a more neutral sound than the KRK according to reviews. I'm happy with them as entry level monitors. I recently checked a mix I'm working on in a fully treated and calibrated room with some big monitors and it sounded as expected. thumbs up
Muzone
I would look at the following for a small room:

Adam A3X, ESI Unik 05+, both seem to be going for under €200 each now.

Might also be worth considering if a set of iLoud Micro Monitors would work for your setting, far from "studio monitors" but unless you are making very bass heavy tunes they do work well in small spaces
TXBDan
My research has led me to believe that the KRK Rokits are fairly hyped and a clear tier below the JBLs, Yamahas, and ADAMs in this range.

I was leaning toward the ADAMs, but JBL 305s are petty easy to find used for pretty darn cheap. There's a set on my local facebook marketplace for $170. Might just do that.
DiscoDevil
$400 on the used market will go a long way.
sp1200
I started on KRKs in the early 2Ks. The Yamaha are a step above. You could maybe find a pair of Focal Alphas for around that on the used market.

I have the Shapes and they’re amazing monitors.
flippantminister
Meant to mention- I have a set of Yamaha HS5 and they are pretty good, but definitely inferior to the JBL 305. Also fairly anemic in the bass response, so if you want a lot of low end in your listening environment, they're not the choice.
Funky40
since i have the lsr305 i really wished me to have a setup with these speakers super close to my ears.
60cm direct distance, 100-120 cm or so apart in width


another thing to mention:
in untreated rooms is usually the difference the room makes MUCH bigger than the difference between speakers.
but the listening distance might play here a role wink
booger
Checking out the JBLs now...


What about the Behringer 2030a? They seem to get mostly decent reviews (even though there always seems to be a comment about how more money could buy better monitors).

Also, does Behringer still make the 3030a? The ribbon tweeter looked like direct ripoff of the Adams.
Exhale
2030 got less oooomph bass, and do better job in a small room.
2031 is very boomy.
booger
Exhale wrote:
2030 got less oooomph bass, and do better job in a small room.
2031 is very boomy.


I have a small room and the monitors will be on a desk about 2' from my face.



Also, should I get a front-ported model for something that close (or does it even matter)?
JohnLRice
In that price range I'd suggest the Yamaha MPS3 . . . or MPS5 if you can stretch your budget by $50 to $75 more total for the pair.
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