We all know that studio monitors are something that everybody in the music business should probably have. Especially if you want to have a high-end, proper equipped recording studio. Of course, you can always have other types of speakers. However, with a good studio monitor – you get excellent attention to precision and this is very important for professionals. If you happen to be a recording engineer, for example, you have rather specific quality demands from the tech gear you work with. This is because when you are listening to a mix, you should have a clear view of every single sound in the mix. Of course, if you end up having a bad mix, you might get away with it on some systems, but on more professional ones, the same mix will sound terrible. And this is exactly why we have to talk about the best studio monitors today’s market can offer.
You can find studio monitors in all shapes, sizes, colors and more importantly – budget ranges. If you do it for personal purposes and you enjoy recording at home, you probably don’t need a high-end sound monitor. However, for those who do it professionally – a studio monitor is a must. Serious audio work demands a serious studio monitor.
Headphones vs Studio Monitors comparison
Of course, a good alternative for those who don’t do it professionally. For example, they are an excellent way to start a studio without investing too much. They give a certain close perspective on things too. They can be excellent for beginners and those who are still learning. However, the difference in the quality of the sound with studio monitors is exemplary. It is very simple – monitors are a MUST if you want to produce high-quality recordings.
The reason for this is the fact that studio monitors are being created with the purpose of accuracy. So, if you want to be sure about the quality of your final result – you must have one. Yes, sometimes the monitor will not give you the nice-sounding mix. However, it will show you all the flaws in your mix. This is why accuracy is the main thing you get from a good studio monitor. It is also the same reason you must invest in one if you want to invest in your business. In order to be excellent at recording – studio monitors are your investment.
Of course, by having one, you as a listener will benefit a lot more compared to having headphones. For example, the studio monitor will eliminate the reflections from the walls in the room. Studio monitors get you close to the sound, and you are able to notice all sorts of details in the sound. So, if you want to make an investment and have a good business – studio monitors are the way to go. However, if you want to listen to music and record for personal needs and as a hobby, headphones is your best choice.
Who is supposed to have a studio monitor
As we said before, studio monitors are basically loudspeakers in speaker enclosures. Moreover, they are created with a certain purpose. This, of course, includes professional audio production purposes. For example, you will find one in TV and radio studios as well as other recording studios. The most important thing about them is that they satisfy the criteria for accuracy in audio reproduction.
Those who are professionals in the field already know that by being a monitor, this device is made to offer a linear phase which is flat and it produces frequency responses. Additionally, the sound monitors produce minimal de-emphasis and emphasis on certain frequencies. Also, this makes sure that the studio monitor produces a very accurate reproduction of the actual tonal quality of the original audio. Lastly, studio monitors make sure that there aren’t relative phase shifts on certain frequencies.
Another thing you should know about them is that they have a bulkier construction compared to home loudspeakers. The reason for this is that the latter has the purpose of reproducing recordings. On the other hand, the studio monitor is there to work with the unexpected bursts of sound and higher volumes which can occur when users are playing unrefined and incomplete mixes on them.
So, to answer the question, we must consider one important thing. This, of course, are the expectations and abilities of the sound monitor user. Namely, if they are a professional like an audio engineer – they will find studio monitors quite helpful. These are the people who will benefit from making an investment such as this one. Also, the sound monitors will help them produce higher quality work by saving time and energy. In the end, accuracy is very important for positive results and this is true even in the sound recording industry.
What studio monitors should I buy
If after reading the text above you have come to the conclusion that you need a studio monitor, we are here to help you even further. Namely, this is the question that bothers a lot of people – even professionals. The reason for this is very obvious – there is an abundance of studio monitors on the market. Different brands, specifications, and features at different price ranges. This might get you very confused and that is completely okay. So, for that reason, we are here to help you make the best choice you can make.
The most important things when it comes to defining the quality of a studio monitor are the individual expectations. So, each person who considers having a studio monitor should take a look at their needs. By carefully defining your needs and expectations, you will easily be able to make a shortlist of your most-wanted studio monitors. Think about the industry you work with and what you expect to achieve from having a studio monitor. Additionally, take into consideration the price you are willing to pay for your next investment.
After you have done this, you must do your research carefully. This basically means that you need to read a bit before you make the final purchase. If you do this, you make sure that you don’t overpay for the studio monitor as well as that you don’t get disappointed afterward. In the end, this means that you should make a smart and well-thought-out investment. And we must say that this is, in fact, an investment because the smarter you invest, the greater will the quality be of your mixes. So, make sure that you don’t go way lower than you can afford because you must make this investment worth your time and money.
Tips for buying studio monitors
There are certain things to be taken into consideration before you make the buy. Namely, if you are well-informed, you will already be able to make a purchase which satisfies the needs of your specific business. However, you mustn’t forget to consider the size of the speaker. For example, if you are mixing in a tiny and small room, you should aim at getting a smaller studio monitor. This will also mean that you will get much more accurate results.
Another thing that a lot of people seem to forget is the sound. Yes, the studio monitors should have good sound, but they don’t need to actually sound good. This isn’t their purpose. They should be as precise and as accurate as they get. After all, you need to be able to notice every single detail in each of your mixes. This way, you will know all the good and bad sides from your mixes and you will have the real chance of improving them.
However, don’t forget that the specific acoustics of a certain room has a huge role in the overall quality and experience. Make sure that you have good acoustics in your recording room too.
How to use studio monitors
After you’ve made your purchase, this is probably your next question. Luckily, we have a few things to say to you on this matter. Studio monitors are somewhere in the middle between hard and easy to use. Namely, they require certain expertise and knowledge. However, even if you are a beginner – you can invest some time and have the same benefits from the studio monitors as other.
The first thing to remember about studio monitors is their setup. Namely, it is very reasonable that different studio monitors have a different setup. This is the very reason why before and after making your purchase you must do your research. See how other people are using the same studio monitor and how their experiences are. More importantly, read the proper manual given to you by your manufacturer.
However, probably the most important thing is setting it up according to your specific needs. In order to get the best out of it, you must adjust it according to your working environment. Place it where it should be and control your acoustics in the control room. Also, you must remember that smaller rooms aren’t a great choice for a recording studio. The reason for this is because some of the bass frequencies aren’t given a chance to be fully developed. Additionally, when it comes to using the studio monitor, you must know other things too. For example, if you are in the TV business, you might need to get a subwoofer too.
So in the end, the answer to the question of how to use your studio monitor is very subjective. You should adjust it to your needs and expectations as well as the actual abilities of the monitor itself. If you do this process carefully and responsibly – positive results are almost guaranteed.