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bookshelf speakers vs studio monitors? - Page 8

post #106 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by nff View Post
 

it looks like the bandwidth on the jbl's is superior (given there are no tolerances stated for either)

By bandwidth do you mean frequency response?

post #107 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by adupree View Post
 

By bandwidth do you mean frequency response?

yes that is what i am referring to

post #108 of 286
Quote:
What dac's do you recommend in the $300-$600 region?

 

Since the active monitors you are interested in offer a stereolink function whereby the volume knob on the front of one speaker controls both you don't really need a DAC if your on-board audio is recent. Anything later than Realtek ALC 889 is considered transparent to the human ear if properly implemented.

http://stephan.win31.de/music.htm#onboard

 

If you do want a DAC and most people do, if only for the convienience and headroom, look for something that offers you more than what you already have. There is an entire class of devices called audio interfaces designed specifically to work with active nearfield monitors. They tend to come from the same pro and semi pro audio sources as the monitors themselves. Don't worry about the quality of the actual converters. Many of these companies want to sell sophisticated $500++  Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) software. It's not in their interests to skimp.

 

Starting from about $200 you can get a reliable interface from an established brand with the following features.

 

Volume control, headphone output with separate volume control, multiple channels out, so you can listen to something different on phones or satellites at the same time or drive a less expensive sub woofer, better inputs than on-board so you can connect up a quality microphone, turntables, wireless receiver etc.Balanced outs to drive the monitors and help avoid ground loops. A very sophisticated EQ and effects package. MIDI so you can use a control surface to control software functions. etc etc....

 

http://uk.focusrite.com/usb-audio-interfaces/scarlett-2i4

http://www.motu.com/products/motuaudio/microbook

http://www.native-instruments.com/en/products/komplete/audio-interfaces/komplete-audio-6/

 

Roland, Steinberg and Avid among others make competitive products.

 

Towards the top end of your budget these look very attractive.

 

http://www.rme-audio.de/en_products_babyface.php

http://spl.info/de/produkte/interfaces/crimson/in-kuerze.html

http://www.motu.com/products/motuaudio/ultralite-mk3

 

RME are the runaway market leader with a reputation for the best software and what to buy if you can afford it. The SPL is newer and has excellent monitor control and listening facilities inc 2 headphone amps The MOTU has the most convenient multichannel capabilities, 10 in and 14 out.

post #109 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldDumsfeld View Post
 

 

Towards the top end of your budget these look very attractive.

 

http://www.rme-audio.de/en_products_babyface.php

http://spl.info/de/produkte/interfaces/crimson/in-kuerze.html

http://www.motu.com/products/motuaudio/ultralite-mk3

 

RME are the runaway market leader with a reputation for the best software and what to buy if you can afford it. The SPL is newer and has excellent monitor control and listening facilities inc 2 headphone amps The MOTU has the most convenient multichannel capabilities, 10 in and 14 out.

The RME looks very nice with all the inc features. However, isn't it more of a pro audio dac? The guy earlier before you also suggested getting a subwoofer if bass is important (it is). I think I'll get a sub first and just use my AQ dragonfly as a dac in the meantime.

post #110 of 286

Fair enough. Good question though. You might even be back.

 

Those devices are designed to deal with issues people who have bought powered/active speakers regularly bring to the forum.

 

Such as. How do i integrate a sub-woofer into my system? How do I control the volume? Can I use headphones independently? How can I avoid ground loops? Can I use balanced connections and should I? etc etc.

 

So thanks for letting me put it out there. Some people might even benefit.

post #111 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldDumsfeld View Post
 

 

Since the active monitors you are interested in offer a stereolink function whereby the volume knob on the front of one speaker controls both you don't really need a DAC if your on-board audio is recent. Anything later than Realtek ALC 889 is considered transparent to the human ear if properly implemented.

http://stephan.win31.de/music.htm#onboard

 

If you do want a DAC and most people do, if only for the convienience and headroom, look for something that offers you more than what you already have. There is an entire class of devices called audio interfaces designed specifically to work with active nearfield monitors. They tend to come from the same pro and semi pro audio sources as the monitors themselves. Don't worry about the quality of the actual converters. Many of these companies want to sell sophisticated $500++  Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) software. It's not in their interests to skimp.

 

Starting from about $200 you can get a reliable interface from an established brand with the following features.

 

Volume control, headphone output with separate volume control, multiple channels out, so you can listen to something different on phones or satellites at the same time or drive a less expensive sub woofer, better inputs than on-board so you can connect up a quality microphone, turntables, wireless receiver etc.Balanced outs to drive the monitors and help avoid ground loops. A very sophisticated EQ and effects package. MIDI so you can use a control surface to control software functions. etc etc....

 

http://uk.focusrite.com/usb-audio-interfaces/scarlett-2i4

http://www.motu.com/products/motuaudio/microbook

http://www.native-instruments.com/en/products/komplete/audio-interfaces/komplete-audio-6/

 

Roland, Steinberg and Avid among others make competitive products.

 

Towards the top end of your budget these look very attractive.

 

http://www.rme-audio.de/en_products_babyface.php

http://spl.info/de/produkte/interfaces/crimson/in-kuerze.html

http://www.motu.com/products/motuaudio/ultralite-mk3

 

RME are the runaway market leader with a reputation for the best software and what to buy if you can afford it. The SPL is newer and has excellent monitor control and listening facilities inc 2 headphone amps The MOTU has the most convenient multichannel capabilities, 10 in and 14 out.

You realize there is a huge difference in quality of converters. That's why Grace, Prism, Apogee are considered so much better.

post #112 of 286

RME is an incredible interface, but you are spending a lot of money for upgraded input preamps and the lowest latency drivers you can get. Important when making music, a waste when just listening to it. I have a dragonfly 1.2 that I use for checking samples, audio bits with a different app when I am working inside my DAW because my DAW keeps exclusive access to my ASIO drivers. I would say it sounds as good as my interface for listening. The biggest problem with dragonfly -> monitors is volume control, there are plenty of monitor controllers that solve that problem. Many also allow for multiple sets of monitors so you have your monitors on one set and headphones on another.  Another option is to use a preamp with fixed output record outputs.  Main outs go to your monitors, record outs go to a proper headphone amp.  A few even offer sub integration if you are trying to mix a hifi sub with pro monitors, though pro subs have their own integration built in.

post #113 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldDumsfeld View Post
 

 

Since the active monitors you are interested in offer a stereolink function whereby the volume knob on the front of one speaker controls both you don't really need a DAC if your on-board audio is recent. Anything later than Realtek ALC 889 is considered transparent to the human ear if properly implemented.

http://stephan.win31.de/music.htm#onboard

 

If you do want a DAC and most people do, if only for the convienience and headroom, look for something that offers you more than what you already have. There is an entire class of devices called audio interfaces designed specifically to work with active nearfield monitors. They tend to come from the same pro and semi pro audio sources as the monitors themselves. Don't worry about the quality of the actual converters. Many of these companies want to sell sophisticated $500++  Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) software. It's not in their interests to skimp.

I just reread your post and it seems I was worrying about getting a dac for nothing. Headphone out from my onboard audio is clean and noise free; powerful enough to drive 32ohm headphones to high spl at around 30-40% on volume bar. Though I just might buy one of those pro dac's because of their awesome eq effects and midi/recording inputs. Anyways thanks for the info!

post #114 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by L0SLobos View Post

The RME looks very nice with all the inc features. However, isn't it more of a pro audio dac? The guy earlier before you also suggested getting a subwoofer if bass is important (it is). I think I'll get a sub first and just use my AQ dragonfly as a dac in the meantime.

You have an Audioquest Dragonfly? I've never heard one, but a lot of head-fiers consider that to be a killer DAC. You could spend a lot to upgrade over what it costs and might not get any SQ benefits.
post #115 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by adupree View Post
 

You realize there is a huge difference in quality of converters. That's why Grace, Prism, Apogee are considered so much better.

I tend to disagree, having used fiio, Roland and focusrite gear at home, and have used benchmark, RME and separate AD and DA setups elsewhere, and have found the difference in quality very very small.  Even with $3000 genelec monitoring setups changing from my roland quad capture and laptop to in-house studio systems the difference is very small, so saying converters make a huge difference is just not true.  Maybe 5-10 years ago, but these days you can get very good DAC for a budget price, what you pay for is brand and features.  People over-state these things when the single biggest thing after the speakers is room treatment, as a rooms acoustics will mess up the very best speakers.

post #116 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tablix View Post
 

I tend to disagree, having used fiio, Roland and focusrite gear at home, and have used benchmark, RME and separate AD and DA setups elsewhere, and have found the difference in quality very very small.  Even with $3000 genelec monitoring setups changing from my roland quad capture and laptop to in-house studio systems the difference is very small, so saying converters make a huge difference is just not true.  Maybe 5-10 years ago, but these days you can get very good DAC for a budget price, what you pay for is brand and features.  People over-state these things when the single biggest thing after the speakers is room treatment, as a rooms acoustics will mess up the very best speakers.

I know plenty of people who would agree with me that they will make a noticeable difference. I have experience with many setups and final results will vary dependent upon equipment. I also feel that acoustics is just as important if not more than speakers. 

post #117 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tablix View Post

I tend to disagree, having used fiio, Roland and focusrite gear at home, and have used benchmark, RME and separate AD and DA setups elsewhere, and have found the difference in quality very very small.  Even with $3000 genelec monitoring setups changing from my roland quad capture and laptop to in-house studio systems the difference is very small, so saying converters make a huge difference is just not true.  Maybe 5-10 years ago, but these days you can get very good DAC for a budget price, what you pay for is brand and features.  People over-state these things when the single biggest thing after the speakers is room treatment, as a rooms acoustics will mess up the very best speakers.

Agreed.

Room treatments, and then knowing how to EQ your speakers, too, after treating the room for final corrections to produce the smoothest response.

It's easy enough to buy a DAC for under $200 that is transparent in sound reproduction by all known measurements.
post #118 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by adupree View Post
 

I know plenty of people who would agree with me that they will make a noticeable difference. I have experience with many setups and final results will vary dependent upon equipment. I also feel that acoustics is just as important if not more than speakers. 

I think you would be hard pressed to find many people who agree with you on the D/A side of things with audio interfaces.  This doesn't mean that higher end interfaces are a waste of money, in fact they are a great investment to the musician.  Higher end interfaces often provide drastic improvements in the pre-amps for inputs, and several other areas, but D/A output is typically not a drastic improvement.

And yes, room treatment is even more important than speakers (also a smaller investment).

post #119 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by Iostream View Post
 

I think you would be hard pressed to find many people who agree with you on the D/A side of things with audio interfaces.  This doesn't mean that higher end interfaces are a waste of money, in fact they are a great investment to the musician.  Higher end interfaces often provide drastic improvements in the pre-amps for inputs, and several other areas, but D/A output is typically not a drastic improvement.

And yes, room treatment is even more important than speakers (also a smaller investment).

Again, I personally know lots of people who will agree with me. Dynamic range, jitter, THD all are effected by converters. This is why if you look at any larger studio you will see them run high-end converters. I can't think of a single studio I've worked at that isn't running Apogee, RME, Prism, Antelope, SSL, Lynx, Benchmark or other similar converters.

post #120 of 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by adupree View Post
 

Again, I personally know lots of people who will agree with me. Dynamic range, jitter, THD all are effected by converters. This is why if you look at any larger studio you will see them run high-end converters. I can't think of a single studio I've worked at that isn't running Apogee, RME, Prism, Antelope, SSL, Lynx, Benchmark or other similar converters.

but you have to remember  studio's start with the room  THEN the move to the hardware.  you wont see a large studio that  has  bad acoustics  and you also have to remember  that  studio's  have budgets specifically to equipment.  sometimes new expensive equipment is purchased solely as a tax write off.  

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