Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?
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Old 07-08-2013, 04:51 PM   #1
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Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

I was hoping someone could tell me if there is a noticable difference in the sound quality of your tracks when mixing on a standard set of speakers vs. high grade studio monitors, say the widely known KRK Rocket series (which I have my eye on).

This may sound like a dumb question but my bewilderment lies in the fact that i've mixed tracks on my VModa m100's and then on my crappy DELL stock speakers. The latter actually had much better results, surprisingly. Maybe acoustics played a role in that case, idk. I've never had anything better than shitty good for nothing DELL speakers, so I need to know before looking into the Rocket.

Anyone please feel free to list their monitor of choice.

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Old 07-08-2013, 05:05 PM   #2
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Re: Mixing and Studio Monitors, your opinions?

Personally, I think it's more a matter of knowing your speakers/monitors of choice.
Having great audio interface, AD/DA converters, monitors and treated room might just be an additional advantage for many.

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Old 07-08-2013, 05:14 PM   #3
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Re: Mixing and Studio Monitors, your opinions?

I did ok mixes on hifi speakers and computer speakers. Dont buy krk rokits. They are pretty hyped...the hghs are fatiguing...the low end is boomy...the mids are lack luster and there stereo image is nothing to write home about. I sold mine to buy equator audio d5s

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Old 07-08-2013, 06:21 PM   #4
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Re: Mixing and Studio Monitors, your opinions?

I have KRK Rokit 8s

personally I like them a lot, but its true, the low end is boomy

although I do most of my mixing on heapdhones (Beyer770), I turn my monitors on when i THINK I am finished, for a final reference / adjustments

but OP, yes, I think there is a reason people spend hundreds/thousands on monitors... they work!

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Old 07-08-2013, 06:42 PM   #5
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Re: Mixing and Studio Monitors, your opinions?

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Originally Posted by DCA View Post
I have KRK Rokit 8s

personally I like them a lot, but its true, the low end is boomy

although I do most of my mixing on heapdhones (Beyer770), I turn my monitors on when i THINK I am finished, for a final reference / adjustments

but OP, yes, I think there is a reason people spend hundreds/thousands on monitors... they work!
I agree with DCA. I've got the KRK Rokit 5s..and they sound just fine. I also use em when I think everything is done and dusted..or just to check how something sounds "Over the air" as opposed to through my ath m50s headphones, which I usually use for mixing.

One thing I will point out is the Rokits tend to sound a hell of all to better when you have them turned down low..and I haven't found anything wrong with their sound using em like this..can't say for loud playback, though I have read elsewhere..can't remember where off the top of my head..that the issues really stand out during loud playback.

Also..and more to the point..there are already a few threads on here..some very long, where members go into all of this. Do a search and start reading..there is a lot ot learn on this subject and all of it has been gone into already.

Here's a few to get your started..

The studio Monitors Thread
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Mastering
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Sound treatment
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A Beginners guide to Electronic Music Production
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Acoustic Treatment, What, Why and How
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headphones under 200 good for mixing bass: mth m50 best bet here?
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Is the POP when turning off monitors unhealthy for them?
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best mixing headphones?
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Hope these help you find out what you want to know.

Last edited by A.M; 07-08-2013 at 06:49 PM..

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Old 07-08-2013, 06:43 PM   #6
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

I think even in an untreated room monitors are an improvement over hifi/computer speakers, if only because you are at least starting out with much more flat frequency response. Also, if you get smaller monitors, with less low end, you don't have to worry about bass problems as much.

I had Rokit 6s, when I upgrade to the D5s I lost about 8hz of bass response or something. This plus the fact that the D5s have a tighter low end (read: not boomy and hyped) it cleaned up a lot of problems I has having from 30-200hz.

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Old 07-08-2013, 06:50 PM   #7
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Re: Mixing and Studio Monitors, your opinions?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AMechanics View Post
I agree with DCA. I've got the KRK Rokit 5s..and they sound just fine. I also use em when I think everything is done and dusted..or just to check how something sounds "Over the air" as opposed to through my ath m50s headphones, which I usually use for mixing.

One thing I will point out is the Rokits tend to sound a hell of all to better when you have them turned down low..and I haven't found anything wrong with their sound using em like this..can't say for loud playback, though I have read elsewhere..can't remember where off the top of my head..that the issues really stand out during loud playback.

Also..and more to the point..there are already a few threads on here..some very long, where members go into all of this. Do a search and start reading..there is a lot ot learn on this subject and all of it has been gone into already.
No matter the quality of a piece of equipment there is a point at which pushing too much signal through a device will cause distortion. I think the Rokit series has a low threshold for this.

A lot of people like Rokits and do great mixes on them. For me, in my untreated room, the difference was night and day.

Besides, mixing quiet is only to your advantage. It's easier to tell how all the elements/tracks relate to each other volume wise and frequency masking wise when the volume is low.

I will crank my tracks during mixing to see how they sound loud though : )

Let's put it this way, if you lived in an apartment and you have your monitors up loud enough for the neighbors to complain, you are mixing too loud.

Also, PSA, take care of your ears! They are the most essential tool you have.

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Old 08-08-2013, 01:33 AM   #8
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

I take it the D5's are KRK models?

As far as my mixing practices go, I have always mixed loudly. I didn't know lower volume meant accuracy.


So what would you guys recommend for someone looking for speakers who makes solely house music and dubstep? My studio is a medium sized room, untreated.


Also a few more questions on the subject: How much does the recommended set cost? (I saw krk rocket 8's as a set online for 600$, but idk if thats for one monitor or both)


And what are any specific tips to someone on the topic of mixing when looking to get a good, accurate read on the sound, something that sounds like what I want it to sound like?


Thanks in advance everyone, cheers!

PS. I know you responded with a great list of threads, which i will read, but every little bit has helped from everyone's responses so far, so i figure why not go a little further

Last edited by Skye Myles; 08-08-2013 at 01:49 AM..

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Old 08-08-2013, 02:06 AM   #9
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

No, D5s are by Equator Audio. A new company by the guy who engineered the Event 20/20's. If you want high end KRKs the VXT series is supposed to be top shelf.

I think a pair of D5s are 399. A pair of Rokit 8s are 600. In a medium untreated room 8inch monitors are too big IMO, even if you won't be able to hear all the sub frequencies.

I assume you are going for a loud, modern dance mix. Use reference tracks that you like the mixing on, listen to them at the same relative volume as your track (both tracks should sound equally loud to your ear). And try to mimic the mixdown.

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Old 08-08-2013, 03:10 AM   #10
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

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No, D5s are by Equator Audio. A new company by the guy who engineered the Event 20/20's. If you want high end KRKs the VXT series is supposed to be top shelf.

I think a pair of D5s are 399. A pair of Rokit 8s are 600. In a medium untreated room 8inch monitors are too big IMO, even if you won't be able to hear all the sub frequencies.

I assume you are going for a loud, modern dance mix. Use reference tracks that you like the mixing on, listen to them at the same relative volume as your track (both tracks should sound equally loud to your ear). And try to mimic the mixdown.
Sadly a 1k pair is out of the question, but i guess i wouldnt be the only one passing on the price tag. So would you recommend d5's or the rocket 8 for my case? I wondered if rocket was all hype or not, but ive seen good reviews from reliable sources on their quality.

And i think im starting to see the consequences of loud mixing on a shitty system since the highs of songs sometimes tend to sidechain themselves with the lows when they aren't meant to

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Old 08-08-2013, 03:40 AM   #11
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

I'd recommend the Equator D5s all day to you over the Rokits for the reasons I've already outlined. But to speak about the D5s...they have a fantastic, out-of-their price range stereo image, they mids 500-1k are amazingly clear and tight, the high end sparkles w/o being fatiguing (at first they seem harsh, but some some hours on the speakers, they will break in). The lowend is present, but not overbearing--Goes down to 53hz, I'd say its accurate down to about 63hz. Which is just shy of what you want for bass music. But considering you are working in an untreated room, reasonable, accurate, not over-hyped low end will help you. Check your mixes on other systems and use reference tracks to mix your low end.

EDIT: Also, the D5s are absolutely unforgiving on your mix. Where as the Rokit's always seemed more like HiFi speakers. If I could have afforded new monitors w/o selling my old ones I would have kept the Rokits to use for house parties as I've a small house. The Rokits are loud and music sounds good on them. But that doesn't make them ideal studio monitors.

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Old 08-08-2013, 03:44 AM   #12
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

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Originally Posted by relic View Post
I'd recommend the Equator D5s all day to you over the Rokits for the reasons I've already outlined. But to speak about the D5s...they have a fantastic, out-of-their price range stereo image, they mids 500-1k are amazingly clear and tight, the high end sparkles w/o being fatiguing (at first they seem harsh, but some some hours on the speakers, they will break in). The lowend is present, but not overbearing--Goes down to 53hz, I'd say its accurate down to about 63hz. Which is just shy of what you want for bass music. But considering you are working in an untreated room, reasonable, accurate, not over-hyped low end will help you. Check your mixes on other systems and use reference tracks to mix your low end.
Now something i've wondered... (Semi off topic) is there any difference between mastering a project in ableton vs mastering the exported audio file? My cpu load is too much to fit Ozone's maximizer in the project

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Old 08-08-2013, 04:49 AM   #13
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

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Originally Posted by Skye Myles View Post
Now something i've wondered... (Semi off topic) is there any difference between mastering a project in ableton vs mastering the exported audio file? My cpu load is too much to fit Ozone's maximizer in the project
No, not really. Maybe if there is some kind of latency going on with MIDI and/or live FXs. I'd export the file the first time, for mastering, at a higher bit rate. But, the master should be 16bit 44khz or whatever CD quality is.

I always bounce the file if I'm going to do some kind of home mastering.

I'm not actually an expert on stuff like this, so someone should come correct me.

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Old 08-08-2013, 04:51 AM   #14
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

Hell you seem more of an authority than myself. Im about to post a new track on soundcloud here in a few minutes, my remix of Days to Come. Check it out if you want, let me know what you think, especially as far as mastering goes.

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Old 08-08-2013, 04:54 AM   #15
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

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Hell you seem more of an authority than myself
Honestly, I'm really guessing about the mastering stuff. The most I do is a bit of gentle limiting to bring the RMS level up w/o destroying the dynamics in the track.

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Old 08-08-2013, 06:22 AM   #16
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

It helps to really be able to see what you're doing well enough with ozone it seems. I wish other effects had a large display and waveform visuals.

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Old 08-08-2013, 08:28 PM   #17
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

i agree with people saying it's about knowing your monitors very well. porter and skrillex both made their debut EPs on a pretty shitty speaker set up.
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Old 08-08-2013, 09:19 PM   #18
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

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Originally Posted by Skye Myles View Post
I wish other effects had a large display and waveform visuals.
There are dedicated analyzers (FFT/spectrum, signal/waveform, level/dynamic, phase correlation, etc) out there.

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Old 08-08-2013, 11:10 PM   #19
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

Today, there are a lot of big artists that are always on the go and are always making tracks using shitty monitors. Of course, they can just send their music to engineers after, but for electronic music, usually most of the mixing is done by the artist. Knowing your setup like people are saying is ALWAYS the best way to get the most out of your mix. Also, if you don't have good monitors, just simply put the track onto an mp3 player and just take it to different places (your friend's house, your car, your living room, etc.) and try it out. Find out a common area in your mix that needs boosting, cutting, and everything in between. Then go back and fix the mix, download it to your mp3 player again, and repeat the process until your mix sounds great. A lot of people may think it's a tedious process, and it really is, but you just have to go out there and do it. It takes time but it will be worth it in the end.
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Old 08-08-2013, 11:28 PM   #20
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Re: Mixing and studio monitors - your opinions?

Tell me if i got this right for the method... Once the track is finished in ableton, i drag the loop section over the entire track, go to file and export the audio, then convert the wav. File to mp3, then bring it back into ableton to master? (Basically just export the audio to wav. Without doing anything before that)

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