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Behringer MS-40 Review - Page 2

post #16 of 34
My Behringer MS40s arrived a week or so ago, so I thought I'd chip in my views of them.

After pondering my financial situation, priorities in life and the best stewardship of my money, I decided to sell my $2500 AU Rega Planet 2000 -> Graham Slee Solo Monitor -> AKG K-701 headphone set up and purchase a not too painful set of speakers for my laptop.

I love music, and wanted to listen to music, but could no longer justify the financial outlay in my headphone setup. I decided to move to powered speakers rather than a more 'budget' headphone setup on the grounds of versatility and practicality.

So. How does a pair of speakers for 1/10th the cost ($250 AU) sound? Is the step down too painful?

First, a little about my setup. I am using mainly 256Kbps WMA files from Windows Media Player to my Behringer UCA202 USB sound card outputting via a Toslink cable to the optical input on the MS40s. Also, the speakers must have been damaged in shipping, because on loud bass notes (sweeps especially), the left woofer rattles (the right woofer is fine at any volume level I have tried). I have spoken to the Behringer tech support people, and they said it's not a common problem, and a replacement driver will be on its way shortly.

Edit: The new woofer has arrived, I've installed it, all works perfectly, and I'm very happy!

Anyay, to cut a long story short, I'm very impressed with the sound quality. I don't meant to say that for the money it is satisfactory, but rather that it is satisfactory full stop. I really haven't heard anything sound bad on these yet. The Beatles, Chopin, Beethoven, Sons of Korah ... all sound great. Just before, I was listening to Schumann's Fantasy Pieces Opus 12, and then some Tchaikovsky on internet radio and thoroughly enjoying it.

And for the specifics?

The built in 2 x 20W RMS amplifiers give plenty of volume headroom and excellent dynamics, most of my listening is done at around 9:00. At 12:00 it's too loud for me to listen to. The dynamics are really good for the classical music I mostly listen to. I even tried a bit of metal. Was fine.

The mids and highs are nice and clear, not fatiguing at all. I think the midrange sounds very slightly recessed in comparison to my K-701 to my ears. Piano sounds very nice. My Claudio Arrau Chopin Nocturnes sound wonderful!

I'm surprised at how hard these little 4 3/4 inch drivers can hit when the music calls for deep powerful bass. It's definitely not one-note boomy bass either, very nice. There's a spot in one Sons of Korah CD where all goes quiet, then some deep, powerful drum hits come in. I really felt those! It can be a tad boomy though. Just a tad, nothing dramatic.

There's lots of soundstage too, with excellent imaging. Locating individual instruments in a classical recording is not at all difficult.

So yes, all in all, very happy, and not missing my headphone setup in the slightest! I highly recommend this combination of sound card ($59 delivered) and speakers ($225 delivered) for a computer setup. I will be enjoying these for quite some time!
post #17 of 34
Thread Starter 
I am still enjoying mine. They might not be the best speakers in the world, but they sure sound good to me.
post #18 of 34
Sorry to revive an old thread, but I just bought the Behringer MS 40s and the left woofer on my set also rattles terribly! I am debating whether I want to replace the set or go with the other model I was considering (M-Audio AV40)?

I wanted the digital in because I have a rats nest of wires that tends to cause interference.
post #19 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by miscbuff View Post
Sorry to revive an old thread, but I just bought the Behringer MS 40s and the left woofer on my set also rattles terribly! I am debating whether I want to replace the set or go with the other model I was considering (M-Audio AV40)?

I wanted the digital in because I have a rats nest of wires that tends to cause interference.
If you've got a pretty decent soundcard or stand-alone DAC I would probably go with the M-Audio AV-40s. Note that I haven't heard these, so I can't comment on the sound. They might just as well be terrible. I can't say. It does indeed need extra cables which might be a reason to not get them.

*There is only one cable going from my computer to the other side of the room which is crossing a little more than 10 meters. (toslink)
post #20 of 34
Reviving this year and half old thread with a couple questions:

Is it possible to have a DAC and still connect to the MS40 (it has it's own DAC) without distortion? I heard double DACing is bad news bears, but I can't see anyway to bypass the MS40 DAC. Should I just sell the MS40 and buy a new DAC and pair of speakers (Swan M10?)?

Also, for headphones, better to connect to onboard (Realtek ALC889A via Gigabyte X48-DS4) or MS40? I will be using the HARX900 and CMOY with OP2227.
post #21 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alai View Post
Reviving this year and half old thread with a couple questions:

Is it possible to have a DAC and still connect to the MS40 (it has it's own DAC) without distortion? I heard double DACing is bad news bears, but I can't see anyway to bypass the MS40 DAC. Should I just sell the MS40 and buy a new DAC and pair of speakers (Swan M10?)?
I'm not completely sure what you mean by 'double DACing'. You can only convert from digital to analog once after all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alai View Post
Also, for headphones, better to connect to onboard (Realtek ALC889A via Gigabyte X48-DS4) or MS40? I will be using the HARX900 and CMOY with OP2227.
Whatever you like best ofcourse. I didn't really like the headphone output of the MS40s, but it might be better than the Realtek. (probably isn't though) The main problem I've had when using onboard soundcards is that most of them are a bit noisy when used with headphones.
post #22 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by EnOYiN View Post
I'm not completely sure what you mean by 'double DACing'. You can only convert from digital to analog once after all.



Whatever you like best ofcourse. I didn't really like the headphone output of the MS40s, but it might be better than the Realtek. (probably isn't though) The main problem I've had when using onboard soundcards is that most of them are a bit noisy when used with headphones.
Ahhh... Yeah, double DACing doesn't make sense, does it? I think I may have been thinking of double amping.

Hmm... Alright, I will test it out. Thanks!
post #23 of 34
I have to ask, is the built in DAC really worth it? I'm currently looking at the AV40 from M-Audio and the MS40.
post #24 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by area5x1 View Post
I have to ask, is the built in DAC really worth it? I'm currently looking at the AV40 from M-Audio and the MS40.
It depends I guess. I had nothing else to connect it to except for my laptop. The soundcard in my laptop is awful so for me it made sense. I wouldn't say the DAC in the MS40 is the greatest thing I've ever heard though.
post #25 of 34
Hello,

I'm a musician from Belgium and because I found this review here very usefull, I thought it would be helpfull to write down my findings on these powered speakers made by the company that does everything cheaper.

Like many who bought this set, it is a choice driven by economical reasons and still wanting to get something good in return. There are a only a few companies in the world that I know of who can manage to make a few good products for a low price. I also bought a recording microphone (Neumann copy) from Stagg and it's an amazing microphone. So Behringer has some good products but I wouldn't compare it with Hi-end products in the high price classes.

Anyway, I own the MS40 for a few days now and I must say I'm impressed. I do use them as reference speakers although you can't really do that if you don't set them up correctly. If you want good speakers next to your PC I would recommend them to anyone.

I'm using an Edirol FA-66 audio interface which is also 24 bit at 192 kHz and that is also written on the Behringer speaker. I connected the digital output from my FA-66 to the speakerset and that is an amazing difference in clarity compared the analoge output. I have to say, you need a good dvd player in your computer or it will sound through your speakers while reading a cd. But that's not the speakers fault. If I connect the analoge cables I didn't have that sound and finaly I changed my dvd player and it was also gone.

I work in a studio from time to time so I could compare real High End reference speakers to these ones and by using the same song on the two locations I was able to configure the bass and treble to get very close to the reference speakers. It's true that the midrange is a bit dull and the snare drums sound not like they should, although not too bad either. I found by turning the Treble 30% up I got a much better midrange sound. I hope that can be a tip to people who use them already. I did find the response of the bass and treble knob not to impressive. But they do work.

With these speakers I'm able to do some very good mastering of my music and at both high and low volume levels they sound very clear to me and I do believe to have trained ears. I'm a singer and I've listened to tracks of my voice without the music and it sounds very wide. You can really hear every frequentie my voice touches.

Conclusion:

I would recommend these speakers for sure! Some people might not agree but if I compared them at the store with different brands in the same range of speaker sets like Yamaha, Alesis, Tannoy and M-Audio, the Behringer MS40 can really compete. First of all, all the other speakers were minimum twice the price and thay all had one or two things that were better in an other model. Only the Tannoy speakers really where amazing but they cost dubble the price of the Behringers. Second, the Behringer have very normal dimensions. Other brands where very wide, deep or high to put next to your screen. And last point I want to say is that the connectivity is complete with the behringers. All buttons on the front panel including on/off button, secondary input with seperate volume control, bass and treble (not good for a reference speaker but a good thing they are there as you need to adjust the midrange a bit), Digital inputs and headphone (I don't use headphones of the speaker set as my FA-66 has a much better output for that).

So if you didn't win the lotery, buy this speaker set. But always think about what you want to use them for. Every human hears sound differently so don't hit me when you find I'm wrong. It's all very personal but by reading a lot of reviews, hopefully like mine, you can get a pretty good idea what to expect from these speakers.

As a new member this is my first post and review. I hope to do some more in the future.

Love,

Moz-Art.
post #26 of 34
Hello guys!

I'm thinking about buying new speakers since I'm slowly becoming interested in home music production (and I got tired from my 2.1 Altec Lansing AVS300 - sounds crappy!), but I have to keep it low on my budget, so MS40 seems like a fair deal to me.

I like the reviews I read here and on other sites also, thanks very much for posting them.

Anyway, the question I need to ask is: What type of sound card would fit good with these speakers and cost no more than 80 euros?
post #27 of 34

Ok I registered just because of this thread. Nice review, very all-around informative. BUT: Does the maker of this review realize, that Behringer MS-40 are studio monitors? I don't see the point comparing Logitech speakers to studio monitors. In your review you said that the mid freqs are really crisp and loud; This is not true. Behringer MS-40 plays them as their true level. Speakers like Logitech usually EQ the bass- and hi-freqs, but not the mid freqs

Studio monitors are used by producers. The main (and most important) feature of studio monitors is to deliver ultimately clean sound, no freq correction AT ALL.

Speakers are designed to add color to these songs. Bass boost and hi-boost is really common, almost a standard. That's why absolutely nobody uses Logitech speakers for production or mixing.

Please correct me if I'm wrong or didn't understand this review correctly.

post #28 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnson Inst View Post

Ok I registered just because of this thread. Nice review, very all-around informative. BUT: Does the maker of this review realize, that Behringer MS-40 are studio monitors? I don't see the point comparing Logitech speakers to studio monitors. In your review you said that the mid freqs are really crisp and loud; This is not true. Behringer MS-40 plays them as their true level. Speakers like Logitech usually EQ the bass- and hi-freqs, but not the mid freqs


Studio monitors are used by producers. The main (and most important) feature of studio monitors is to deliver ultimately clean sound, no freq correction AT ALL.


Speakers are designed to add color to these songs. Bass boost and hi-boost is really common, almost a standard. That's why absolutely nobody uses Logitech speakers for production or mixing.


Please correct me if I'm wrong or didn't understand this review correctly.

Well, I am aware that behringer markets them as studio monitors if that is what you're getting at. I would however never recommend anyone looking for studio monitors to buy these.

My reasoning for this is that these speakers are not in any way shape or form neutral enough to be used as such. I tried it for a short while. If you want neutral you generally would have to spend more money than the MS40 goes for. I don't know of any speakers that are even remotely neutral in this price range. Seeing as it is in the same price segment as speakers which logitech - or what have you - typically fabricate, it seemed like a good idea to compare it to those types of speakers. That's pretty much it. I like these better than your average logitech 2.1 set for listening to music. This is obviously my preference and could very well be different for anyone else. Aside from that reviews on the sound of anything are obviously something that have to be taken for what they are: The opinion of the reviewer and nothing else. Someone else might prefer a logitech set and I won't blame them for it. (well maybe I would, but that's another thing entirely)

Also I'm pretty sure that most high end speakers these days (and by that I don't mean monitors) try to reproduce audio in a way that is as flat as possible.

* Funny thing you mentioned by the way. One of the things these speakers have is the option to boost the bass and treble levels. smily_headphones1.gif
Edited by EnOYiN - 3/28/12 at 2:16pm
post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by EnOYiN View Post


Well, I am aware that behringer markets them as studio monitors if that is what you're getting at. I would however never recommend anyone looking for studio monitors to buy these.
My reasoning for this is that these speakers are not in any way shape or form neutral enough to be used as such. I tried it for a short while. If you want neutral you generally would have to spend more money than the MS40 goes for. I don't know of any speakers that are even remotely neutral in this price range. Seeing as it is in the same price segment as speakers which logitech - or what have you - typically fabricate, it seemed like a good idea to compare it to those types of speakers. That's pretty much it. I like these better than your average logitech 2.1 set for listening to music. This is obviously my preference and could very well be different for anyone else. Aside from that reviews on the sound of anything are obviously something that have to be taken for what they are: The opinion of the reviewer and nothing else. Someone else might prefer a logitech set and I won't blame them for it. (well maybe I would, but that's another thing entirely)
Also I'm pretty sure that most high end speakers these days (and by that I don't mean monitors) try to reproduce audio in a way that is as flat as possible.
* Funny thing you mentioned by the way. One of the things these speakers have is the option to boost the bass and treble levels. smily_headphones1.gif

 

-Reason for bass/treble boost is (what i've heard) acoustic correction. Not everyone has same kind of room; different sizes, shapes and material.
-Buy any speakers today (high end or not), their job is to color the sound and make it sound as best as possible (This is a fact). They have entirely different EQ settings than studio monitors, and definition of "flat" is probably different when speaking about studio monitors and entertainment speakers.
-While you were doing your review, did you had your room treated acoustically? I can imagine almost every studio monitor sounding bad if your room has  plenty of refecting material, such as glass in your walls.

- The point I was trying to explain is a bit deeper than the content of your review, it's whole idea of it: You really can't compare Logitech 2.1 speaker system to studio monitors. They behold entirely different purpose. It's like comparing Toyota Supra and Ford Galaxy which is better family car.

http://www.ehow.com/facts_5962330_difference-between-speaker-studio-monitor.html

This is really good 'article' I found from eHow. Really explains it.
 

 


Edited by Johnson Inst - 3/28/12 at 5:08pm
post #30 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnson Inst View Post

You really can't compare Logitech 2.1 speaker system to studio monitors. They behold entirely different purpose.

I can and I did. It's like saying I can't compare a Grado headphone to the beyerdynamic DT48. Since price range is often one of the considerations when buying pretty much anything it makes sense to compare it to speakers which are similar in price. Thing is, the logitech speakers sound worse in pretty much every way. That and the MS-40 goesn't have a flat frequency response. No matter whether you use the treble and bass knobs or use some more refined way of EQing the or taking in to account for the room. They are simply flawed speakers for that purpose. You can get them reasonably close to flat without a doubt, but without such money constraints anyone would go for something else. You are allowed to disagree with my opinion on that of course.

Please don't link to ehow articles. That makes me miss the times when people linked to wiki. Here is a neat link to a measurement of the nautilus. Seems pretty flat to me. Maybe not as flat as your average studio monitor, but surely you can't argue that they were trying to add color.
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