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Best Studio Monitor Speakers

Looking for the best studio monitor speakers for your DAW home recording studio in 2018?

The are quite a few choices when it comes to studio monitor speakers. This article will help you choose the best set for your needs.

 

The choices are active or passive speakers.  Active powered speakers have amps built-in that boost the volume of your music signal. Passive speakers do not and require a separate amp. I personally like using active speakers. No amp needed.

If your setup is in an average sized room, 100 watts is plenty. You'll even do well with 75-watt speakers. 100-watt speakers will blast out 120 decibels at half volume.

Under 90 decibels is the recommended monitoring level for your initial mixing and mastering. 105 decibels is the max you should go to prevent hearing loss.

Note: Monitor at 105 decibels or higher for only short periods of time, under 30 minutes a day, to prevent hearing loss.  And not a continuous 30 minutes!!  Take a break, at least, every 5 minutes when monitoring at high volume levels.

 

BEST ACTIVE STUDIO MONITORS

Below are a few different speaker sets that will work very well.

$899 (Each) Dynaudio BM6A MKII (My personal favorites)
$299.95 Behringer B1030A Truth Active Monitor

 


BEST ACTIVE SUB-WOOFER

When using 6-8 inch near field monitor speakers, it is an absolute MUST to have a decent sub woofer. Monitors this size give out very little bass. 50hz is non-existent, and 100hz is very weak. You'll be lost when mixing your low frequency instruments. A nice sub woofer will compliment the speakers above and allow you to hear every frequency range in your music.

$399.00 KRK K10S Active Subwoofer

 


BEST AUDIO & MONITOR CONTROL SYSTEM

If your speakers are connected to your audio interface, then you'll have to use the DAW software on your computer to control the volume. With the Presonus Central Station, you can connect up to three different sets of speakers and control the volume with wired remote.  This unit allows you to quickly scroll through different sets of speakers with the touch of a button. You can also connect a cd player, iPod, etc. to the system. It's a complete audio and speaker control system. Very nice!

Note - In addition to the good speakers, pro sound engineers like to connect a cheaper set of speakers to the system, to hear what the music will sound like to the average listener (since most don't have $1,000 speakers).

 

My Best Mixing & Mastering Articles

A/B Comparison In Mastering
In this video I do a quick A/B comparison of a few songs.  In my audio mastering secrets video series, I get a lot more in-depth into exactly what you are trying to achieve sonically for your genre/style of music.
 
How Much Headroom Before Mastering Should I Leave?

mastering headroom

How much headroom before mastering should you leave in your mix?  Here's the correct amount of headroom you should leave, using detailed graphic examples.

 

What's The Difference Between Mixing And Mastering

8 difference between mixing mastering

What's the difference between mixing and mastering?  A lot of people new to music don't know the answer to this.

 

Mastering Hardware Equipment You Need For Your DAW Home Recording Studio

7 mastering hardware equipment daw recording studio

Here's the basic hardware you need to master music:

 

Mid Side EQ In Mastering

This is a quick video on how a mid-side processor works, and how to check the stereo field of your mix using a mid-side processor equalizer.

 

Top 17 Common Music Mixing Mistakes And How To Fix Them!
audio music mixing mistakes
 
These are the Top 17 most common music mixing mistakes I see daily.  Correcting them could will improve your audio mastering results and make your mixes sound more professional.
 
 
Audio Mastering Software Processors

Here are the series of audio mastering software processors I've used on the over 30,000 songs I've mastered since 1999.  In this video, I use mostly izotope ozone plugins because it's easier to explain using them.  In real-life, I do mix in a few hardware pieces, and a waves plugin.

 

What Is Audio Mastering?

9 what is audio mastering

What is audio mastering?  I've seen a lot of different answers on the Internet to this simple question.  Some were pretty technical and confusing.

 

How To Correctly Set Mixing Levels Before Mastering

set mixing level meters

Correctly setting your mixing levels before mastering is essential for great mastering results.  Having the best DB levels for mixing is critical.  Here's how to properly do it!

 

Why Do Songs Need To Be Mastered?

12 why need audio mastering

Why do songs need to be mastered?  I've seen this question on the Internet many times.  The answer I always see is "Because all songs on the radio have been professionally mastered, yours should be too."  This is a true fact, but not an answer.

 

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