I've narrowed down a list of monitors. Can anybody give me some input?
Jan 14, 2014 at 1:27 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 45


New Head-Fier
Apr 16, 2013
So. This is what I am looking for:
A PAIR of monitor speakers for under 225. I want to stay away from the 250 range, and under 200 would be ideal, but I do not want to skimp out on my music.
I use FL studio and make music here and there. I love rock more than any genre. Rise against, sleeping with sirens, papa roach, three days grace, 10 years, skillet, the list goes on forever.
I want similar lows and highs to my audio technicas, but better mids. This will be hooked up to my gaming PC with ALC892 audio codec from my motherboard.
These are the choices I have it narrowed down to (not all are monitors):
*****M-Audio Bx5a
*****M-Audio Bx5a deluxe
*****M-Audio Bx5a d2
M-Audio AV40
*****Audioengine A2
*****Audioengine A2+
KRK Rokit 5
Creative t40
Harman Kardon Soundsticks III
Corsair SP2500
I put stars next to the ones that I am heavily considering.
Jan 14, 2014 at 1:40 AM Post #2 of 45
Oddly enough, I just received my KRK Rokit 8s today.
I have them hooked up and have been playing music at low to medium levels for several hours now.
IMO, the soft dome tweeters on these are pretty darn good. For my main system, I have Bowers & Wilkins towers that have aluminum dome tweeters, and I find them to be too bright/fatiguing, especially at higher volume levels.
The tweeters on the KRKs seems to be a LOT smother than my B&Ws. I have not yet cranked them up, but these are designed for near field listening, so I don't think I will ever need to get too crazy with the volume knob for normal listening. However, I WILL push them hard after they break in, just to see how they can handle it. LOL!

Good luck, and I am unable to comment on any other brands, as I have not heard them.

Jan 14, 2014 at 1:56 AM Post #3 of 45
Thank you for the input. I heard some KRK rokit 5 and 6s today. The 5s were a bit too muffled compared to other speakers of the price range. the 6 were fantastic though.
Jan 14, 2014 at 2:20 AM Post #4 of 45
Monoprice 5" studio monitors, $167
They seem to be rebranded M-Audio BX5s
I've had mine for a few months, so far no regrets
Might consider spending $60 for a used Xonar DX or D1 sound card, comes with the CD4398 DAC chip.
Jan 18, 2014 at 8:15 PM Post #8 of 45
I'll add to your list. I'm about to upgrade as well and have pretty much decided on JBL LSR305. I've looked at all the ones you've mentioned but these seem to stand out. 
I know it's above your budget a bit (around $150 per speaker) but you could always wait a little longer until you have the funds to get a longer term investment. 
Jan 19, 2014 at 9:51 PM Post #9 of 45
Believe it or not, I went to a local guitar center about a week ago ( I just remembered this thread today)....My heart has been set on the JBL LSR305s ever since. They absolutely destroy any of the 200-250 dollar pairs I heard to such an extent, that I am buying them The extra 50-100 dollars does not phase me in the least.
I appreciate all of the suggestions, but After research/hearing for myself. I have to go with the JBL LSR305s.
Its funny that they are recommended like 4 days after I decide they are the ones I want. Good ear on you Scabertrain. Thank you everyone.
Question though - I am hooking them up to a computer with optical digital (toslink), and a standard headphone jack......How can I hook these things up without losing audio quality?
Jan 19, 2014 at 10:48 PM Post #10 of 45
These will probably do the trick http://www.hosatech.com/product/339846/CMP-159/_/Stereo_Breakout,_3.5_mm_TRS_to_Dual_14_in_TS,_10_ft
I'd also suggest eventually upgrading your sound card as that can make a significant difference. I've got my current speakers (AV40's soon to be JBL's) hooked up to a FIIO E09K and E17 for the DAC and it's miles ahead of the sound I got out of my previous Creative Titanium card.
Let me know what you think of the speakers! i'm going to pull the trigger this week probably... now all I have to do is get base to tweeter physical measurements of the speakers so i can build speaker stands for them!
Jan 20, 2014 at 1:08 AM Post #11 of 45
what are the FIIO E09K and E17 used for exactly? How is it better than a sound card?
I have some ATH-m50s (headphones) and they sound rather weak on my ipod and iphone. Would you suggestion help for those as well - is it portable, or just for computer?
Also- thanks for the cable! I found it much cheaper on amazon, naturally. That won't cause sound degradation, will it?
Jan 20, 2014 at 5:52 PM Post #12 of 45
The FIIO E09K is technically a headphone amplifier but you can also plug in active monitors (the JBL's you're getting) The E09K would definitely help with your headphones as it would give them more power making them sound A LOT better. E09K is not portable. 
The E17 however is portable and with an additional Line out cable (Amazon search for FIIO LOD) you could hook it up between your Ipod and M50's.
The E17 is an Amp and a DAC (think external sound card) so using that with M50's and IPOD when you're on the go will make a substantial difference in sound.
The E17 can dock into the E09K at home which would then cause it to be AMP/DAC for your head phones and allow you to plug the JBL's into the E09K to act as a sound card for the speakers.
Not only is the E17 not a bad DAC/soundcard but it's external from your computer so it's not prone to interference that can come from your computer (blips and bops you can sometimes hear when listening to things).
There are better AMPs and DAC's out there but these a pretty good to start off with at a not insane price point (around $200 combined for E09K and E17).
The Hosa cables are pretty good. No point in spending more for cables than that as i'm of the belief that a relatively cheap but well made cable (such as hosa) is just as good as $200 cable that does the same thing. What will cause the noticeable difference beyond the speakers is the addition of a DAC instead of the integrated sound card.
Lastly, IF  you should decide to take the plunge and pick up the FIIO E09K and E17 then you'll need a different cable to plug into your speakers instead (search amazon for Hosa cpr202)
The world of audio is an expensive place! 5 years ago i couldn't imagine spending $300 for headphones, then i got the Q701's... Once you hear good sound you can never go back :)
Jan 20, 2014 at 6:05 PM Post #13 of 45
Ah alright! Awesome! I have to research an actual audio interface box for connecting my JBLs to my computer for best possible results. As far as headphone amps go, you have helped me a lot. I would probably only need the E17, and not the E09k, but you have seriously helped a lot- thanks! So glad this forum archives everything so I can reference this when I am in serious need for the headphone amp. For now, My focus is the JBLs and an audio interface for em. Maybe a sound card too. Not sure yet,

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