Every music producer, experienced or not, comes upon the same dilemma at one point or another; which studio monitors should they buy? This all depends on quite a few factors, but the most important one for many of us is the price. So we took some time to look into what are the best mid-level studio monitors in a great price range.
Of course price is a major factor, but checking out the specifications of each brand can help you make a more calculated decision. Quality of sound is of the utmost importance when selecting studio monitors and below you will find some of the best available. Bad sound could lead to bad tracks.
Disclaimer: These are in no particular order.
Yamaha HS Series:
- Yamaha's studio monitors are extremely popular with producers and with clean mids and highs, they emit a clean sound. These speakers, especially the HS8 and HS7s have very high sound quality, although they may need to be accompanied by a sub for more accurate bass. They are affordable and regarded by many as being of "professional" quality as well.
Price: Hs7 ~$599 (pair)
KRK Rokit Series:
- This comes with rich KRK sound, with powerful low end and lot's of volume, plus very rich, warm mids and a heavy bass. These are great speakers, with a bit of a relatively colored sound that many electronic musicians actually like. If you are new to production and want your first pair of monitor speakers, these are great. They look awesome in any studio, and they emphasize the low end, making your track sound slightly bigger than it actually is. This can be good and bad, but when you are making a song and it already is sounding great, you have more inspiration to keep going and finish it. Then you can outsource the mixing and mastering or simply get really used to using these, as well as using other references and headphones.
Price: Rokit KRK 8 - ~$399 (pair)
Presonus Eris Series:
- Really affordable, perfect to get yourself going. With a Kevlar low-frequency transducer and an ultra low mass dome, these speakers spit out very clean and clear audio and are quite powerful for their price.
Price: Eris 5.25 - $299.99 (pair)
JBL LSR Series:
- Good clarity and a relatively flat response. These speakers are very clean, although a subwoofer may be necessary to accompany them for more accurate bass translation.
Price: JBL LSR3 - $149.99
Behringer Truth B3031A:
- These speakers don't look or sound cheap, but the price point makes them very attractive. The bass is very tight and doesn't distort, while the top end of the mix is nicely detailed without being too sharp.
Adam Audio AX Series:
- Moving more towards the higher end of the spectrum for our list, the Adam Audio AX series, especially the A7X, is a very popular studio monitor. Known for the unique looking X-ART Tweeter, the A7X's boast what may be the most hi-tech tweeter on this list. These speakers provide an extremely flat frequency response and have front bass ports, allowing them to be placed closer to the walls behind them for smaller rooms.
Price: AX7 ~$1500 (pair)
- These are the most expensive monitors on this list for a reason. Genelec's are regarded as some of the most high end monitors around. The M040's are bright and forward sonically, and still remain revealing for a solid clean mix. These speakers even have an intelligent signal sensing feature that switches the amps automatically to low-power standby mode when not in use. If you have the money to spare, these are your best bet without going into the higher end speakers. Although I personally think their look leaves a bit to be desired, they do have the best sound on this list, but also the highest price point.
Price: ~$1600 (pair)
In conclusion, we highly suggest going to your local audio store and listening to all of them for yourself before buying anything. The most popular ones are probably the Yamaha HS7s and KRK Rokit 8s, which are both great speakers for electronic producers. In the end it all comes down to what you can afford, and what has a sound that you like, so definitely give them a listen and let us know what's your favorite!