Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Passive Monitors vs Active Monitors

Last response: in Home Audio
Share
March 14, 2005 1:55:36 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Hello all!
I'm looking at the Event Studio Precision 8's to replace my current
Berhinger Truth (don't ask) monitors.

I already have a nice Hafler amp that puts out about 125w/ch and I don't
mix at high levels as a rule. I also have a Samson amp that puts out
around 150w/ch and to be honest I don't hear any difference between it and
the Hafler although the build quality of the Hafler is much better.
I know Samson has a miserable reputation, but.......

So my question is, should I go with the Event actives @ $1,100/pair on
sale at GC or go with the passives @ about $650/pair at Sweetwater (I
think that price is a wee bit high!).

Thoughts?

Anything else I should consider at the $1500 and below price point?

Steph
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 2:46:51 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"Stephanie" <ben_was_a_rat@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:39kg97F61ibt8U1@individual.net...
> Hello all!
> I'm looking at the Event Studio Precision 8's to replace my current
> Berhinger Truth (don't ask) monitors.
>
> I already have a nice Hafler amp that puts out about 125w/ch and I don't
> mix at high levels as a rule. I also have a Samson amp that puts out
> around 150w/ch and to be honest I don't hear any difference between it and
> the Hafler although the build quality of the Hafler is much better.
> I know Samson has a miserable reputation, but.......
>
> So my question is, should I go with the Event actives @ $1,100/pair on
> sale at GC or go with the passives @ about $650/pair at Sweetwater (I
> think that price is a wee bit high!).

I have an older set of the 20/20 BAS, and I love for listening and home
theater, but there's been a lot posts pointing out that the mixes don't
translate well to other speakers, and I have to agree with them. My mixes
just don't sound right anywhere but my own room (which also needs better
treatment, probably true for most rooms).

I'm looking at Blue Sky and Truth Audio for my next set. I was hoping to get
a set of Dynaudios, but the budget is slipping away for them.

Sean
March 14, 2005 3:15:42 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On Sun, 13 Mar 2005 23:46:51 -0500, Sean Conolly wrote:


> I have an older set of the 20/20 BAS, and I love for listening and home
> theater, but there's been a lot posts pointing out that the mixes don't
> translate well to other speakers, and I have to agree with them. My mixes
> just don't sound right anywhere but my own room (which also needs better
> treatment, probably true for most rooms).
>
> I'm looking at Blue Sky and Truth Audio for my next set. I was hoping to get
> a set of Dynaudios, but the budget is slipping away for them.
>
> Sean

Hello Sean!
I actually auditioned a set of 20/20 BAS's and I did not like them. The
low end is hyped and flutters about, very loose sounding. Playing a Ray
Brown CD on them drives the woofers wild! The Precision 8's (at least the
active models which are the only ones I have heard) sound VERY different
from the 20/20;s. FWIW they sound a lot like the Mackies only they go
lower and the imaging seems a wee bit better, maybe at the expense of
smoothness though IMHO.
The SP8's sound much more controlled than the 20/20's to my ears.
I love the Mackies, but we are talking $500.00 difference (actives) in
price and quite frankly *I* don't hear $500.00 worth.
But that's why I am asking for some professional opinions!!
FWIW Dynaudio has a couple of models in my price frame.
Any suggestions?

Steph
Related resources
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 4:52:04 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"Stephanie" <ben_was_a_rat@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:39kkvdF62d4p8U1@individual.net...
> On Sun, 13 Mar 2005 23:46:51 -0500, Sean Conolly wrote:
>
>
> > I have an older set of the 20/20 BAS, and I love for listening and home
> > theater, but there's been a lot posts pointing out that the mixes don't
> > translate well to other speakers, and I have to agree with them. My
mixes
> > just don't sound right anywhere but my own room (which also needs better
> > treatment, probably true for most rooms).
> >
> > I'm looking at Blue Sky and Truth Audio for my next set. I was hoping to
get
> > a set of Dynaudios, but the budget is slipping away for them.
> >
> > Sean
>
> Hello Sean!
> I actually auditioned a set of 20/20 BAS's and I did not like them. The
> low end is hyped and flutters about, very loose sounding. Playing a Ray
> Brown CD on them drives the woofers wild! The Precision 8's (at least the
> active models which are the only ones I have heard) sound VERY different
> from the 20/20;s. FWIW they sound a lot like the Mackies only they go
> lower and the imaging seems a wee bit better, maybe at the expense of
> smoothness though IMHO.
> The SP8's sound much more controlled than the 20/20's to my ears.
> I love the Mackies, but we are talking $500.00 difference (actives) in
> price and quite frankly *I* don't hear $500.00 worth.

The oft-reported problem with the 20/20's seems to be a scooped midrange and
hyped high end. And yes, the bottom gets loose, much more so than the
Mackies. To my not-so-experienced ears the Mackies don't sound as good in
the mids as my Events, but I couldn't tell you which one is closer to
reality.

None of which addresses the model you're looking at, which I haen't heard. I
know that I'm not interested in using Events for my primary monitors
anymore.


> But that's why I am asking for some professional opinions!!
> FWIW Dynaudio has a couple of models in my price frame.
> Any suggestions?

I was going to go all out for the BM15A's, which I think would be the last
monitors I would need for a long time, and at $2600 a pair they would need
to. I'm probably going to spend closer to $1500 on speakers and put $1000
into room treatment. The BM6A is closer to that budget, and I can add a
subwoofer later.

I do want to listen to the Truth Audios and the Blue Sky's Sytem One first,
though. I heard the little Blue Sky MediaDesk system and I was surprised how
good it sounded, espcially how well the sub integrated with the desk
speakers.

Sean
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 7:30:27 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

>I already have a nice Hafler amp that puts out about 125w/ch and I
don't
>mix at high levels as a rule. I also have a Samson amp that puts out
>around 150w/ch and to be honest I don't hear any difference between it
and
>the Hafler

what speakers did you use to compare the two? (if they did not show any
difference how good are they for mixing?) and what was your sound
source ? (was it a mp3, no real details)

active speakers have the advantage of having the amp / speaker
interface tweaked to provide the best sound possible.(of course there
are manufacurer's retail price considerations) but if something goes
wrong everything must go to the repair shop. with seperates you can do
an upgrade one component at a time.

look into the dynaudio or pmc passive speakers, spend the $1100, the
hafler should be good enough to start with either
< http://www.macmidimusic.com/level.itml/icOid/98 >

dale
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 12:01:22 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Stephanie <ben_was_a_rat@yahoo.com> wrote:
>I'm looking at the Event Studio Precision 8's to replace my current
>Berhinger Truth (don't ask) monitors.
>
>I already have a nice Hafler amp that puts out about 125w/ch and I don't
>mix at high levels as a rule. I also have a Samson amp that puts out
>around 150w/ch and to be honest I don't hear any difference between it and
>the Hafler although the build quality of the Hafler is much better.
>I know Samson has a miserable reputation, but.......

That right there is a sign that you have a problem with your monitoring.
With better speakers, you should be hearing a difference between amps. The
difference between amps, though, will be a lot less than the diffference
between speakers.

>So my question is, should I go with the Event actives @ $1,100/pair on
>sale at GC or go with the passives @ about $650/pair at Sweetwater (I
>think that price is a wee bit high!).

I see no reason to pay more money for active monitors if you have an amp
set up already anyway.

>Anything else I should consider at the $1500 and below price point?

I'm not a fan of the Events at all. I think you should definitely check
out the Tannoy Reveals. And the Mackie active monitors aren't bad at all
and might be in your range.
--scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 12:07:38 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"Stephanie" <ben_was_a_rat@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:39kg97F61ibt8U1@individual.net
> Hello all!
> I'm looking at the Event Studio Precision 8's to replace my current
> Berhinger Truth (don't ask) monitors.

In all seriousness, why can't we ask?

What don't you like about the little Behrs - it might give a clue about what
the next step should be.
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 1:33:10 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

My Blue Sky's (sys 1) work for me and all of my clients so far anyways. Very
smooth integration of the sub. Highly reccomended

Rick@ Record Time Productions
"Sean Conolly" <sjconolly_98@yaaho.com> wrote in message
news:5uaZd.45451$%Y4.42794@bignews6.bellsouth.net...
> "Stephanie" <ben_was_a_rat@yahoo.com> wrote in message
> news:39kkvdF62d4p8U1@individual.net...
> > On Sun, 13 Mar 2005 23:46:51 -0500, Sean Conolly wrote:
> >
> >
> > > I have an older set of the 20/20 BAS, and I love for listening and
home
> > > theater, but there's been a lot posts pointing out that the mixes
don't
> > > translate well to other speakers, and I have to agree with them. My
> mixes
> > > just don't sound right anywhere but my own room (which also needs
better
> > > treatment, probably true for most rooms).
> > >
> > > I'm looking at Blue Sky and Truth Audio for my next set. I was hoping
to
> get
> > > a set of Dynaudios, but the budget is slipping away for them.
> > >
> > > Sean
> >
> > Hello Sean!
> > I actually auditioned a set of 20/20 BAS's and I did not like them. The
> > low end is hyped and flutters about, very loose sounding. Playing a Ray
> > Brown CD on them drives the woofers wild! The Precision 8's (at least
the
> > active models which are the only ones I have heard) sound VERY different
> > from the 20/20;s. FWIW they sound a lot like the Mackies only they go
> > lower and the imaging seems a wee bit better, maybe at the expense of
> > smoothness though IMHO.
> > The SP8's sound much more controlled than the 20/20's to my ears.
> > I love the Mackies, but we are talking $500.00 difference (actives) in
> > price and quite frankly *I* don't hear $500.00 worth.
>
> The oft-reported problem with the 20/20's seems to be a scooped midrange
and
> hyped high end. And yes, the bottom gets loose, much more so than the
> Mackies. To my not-so-experienced ears the Mackies don't sound as good in
> the mids as my Events, but I couldn't tell you which one is closer to
> reality.
>
> None of which addresses the model you're looking at, which I haen't heard.
I
> know that I'm not interested in using Events for my primary monitors
> anymore.
>
>
> > But that's why I am asking for some professional opinions!!
> > FWIW Dynaudio has a couple of models in my price frame.
> > Any suggestions?
>
> I was going to go all out for the BM15A's, which I think would be the last
> monitors I would need for a long time, and at $2600 a pair they would need
> to. I'm probably going to spend closer to $1500 on speakers and put $1000
> into room treatment. The BM6A is closer to that budget, and I can add a
> subwoofer later.
>
> I do want to listen to the Truth Audios and the Blue Sky's Sytem One
first,
> though. I heard the little Blue Sky MediaDesk system and I was surprised
how
> good it sounded, espcially how well the sub integrated with the desk
> speakers.
>
> Sean
>
>
>
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 1:34:34 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Stephanie,

> should I go with the Event actives <

I never get into discussion about "which speaker is best," but I can offer
my standard blurb on the advantage of active versus passive loudspeakers:

There are many advantages of active monitors for the typical project studio,
besides a simpler hookup with less pieces to carry if you ever do remotes:

Active speakers are typically bi-amped, which often yields a cleaner sound
with less distortion. And bi-amping offers more ways to optimize the
crossover performance because it uses active rather than passive components.
Also, the power amps will be well matched to the speakers, they won't have a
fan, and the wires from amp to speaker are shorter which improves damping.
But to me the overwhelming advantage, as implemented in the Mackies anyway,
is that the woofer cone's motion can be included within the power amp's
feedback loop to reduce distortion by a significant amount.

--Ethan
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 1:36:51 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

In article <39kg97F61ibt8U1@individual.net> ben_was_a_rat@yahoo.com writes:

> I already have a nice Hafler amp that puts out about 125w/ch and I don't
> mix at high levels as a rule. I also have a Samson amp that puts out
> around 150w/ch and to be honest I don't hear any difference between it and
> the Hafler although the build quality of the Hafler is much better.

I didn't think there was much difference between power amplifiers
until I got some better monitors. Then I found that when I tried a
Hafler to replace what I had been using, I didn't have to turn the EQ
knobs as far in order to hear changes. That's a good thing. (it's also
a good way to evaluate monitors) When my dealer loaned me a Bryston, I
noticed a little change (for the better, I thought) in the bass, but
not enough to be worth a $650 investment at the time.

> So my question is, should I go with the Event actives @ $1,100/pair on
> sale at GC or go with the passives @ about $650/pair at Sweetwater (I
> think that price is a wee bit high!).

Does Guitar Center have the passive version (at any price)? If so, why
not buy a pair, listen to them with your amplifiers at home, and if
you like them, keep them and enjoy the savings. If you don't like
them, return them, buy the actives, and see if you like those. If you
still don't like them, then you don't like that monitor - look for
something else. If you can hear things with the active version that
you couldn't hear when you used your own power amplifiers, then you'll
knot that there's some benefit to using the amplifier that the Event
people optimized for those speakers.

A/B comparisons of things that are pretty close drive people nuts.
Don't worry about not making that comparison. Or if you have
sufficient balance on your credit card, buy both the actives and
passives, and keep the one that's the best deal for you, sound- and
budget-wise. Or return both and try something else.


--
I'm really Mike Rivers (mrivers@d-and-d.com)
However, until the spam goes away or Hell freezes over,
lots of IP addresses are blocked from this system. If
you e-mail me and it bounces, use your secret decoder ring
and reach me here: double-m-eleven-double-zero at yahoo
March 14, 2005 5:47:28 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 10:36:51 -0500, Mike Rivers wrote:

e Hafler is much better.
>
> I didn't think there was much difference between power amplifiers
> until I got some better monitors. Then I found that when I tried a
> Hafler to replace what I had been using, I didn't have to turn the EQ
> knobs as far in order to hear changes. That's a good thing. (it's also
> a good way to evaluate monitors) When my dealer loaned me a Bryston, I
> noticed a little change (for the better, I thought) in the bass, but
> not enough to be worth a $650 investment at the time.

I probably should have clarified my statement a little more by adding "at
lower levels" that I tend to mix at. My normal listening system is a set
of maggies driven by an old Bryston amplifier and I have hooked the Samson
up to those speakers and I could hear a difference but I figured it might
be due to the load the maggies present to the amp.
When driven hard the Hafler stays smooth and the Samson gets a little
harsh, but at normal levels I hear little or no difference, at least
through the Truth monitors.


> Does Guitar Center have the passive version (at any price)? If so, why
> not buy a pair, listen to them with your amplifiers at home, and if
> you like them, keep them and enjoy the savings. If you don't like
> them, return them, buy the actives, and see if you like those. If you
> still don't like them, then you don't like that monitor - look for
> something else. If you can hear things with the active version that
> you couldn't hear when you used your own power amplifiers, then you'll
> knot that there's some benefit to using the amplifier that the Event
> people optimized for those speakers.

I'm the shy type :( 
IOW the person who never sends food back at a restaurant.
But in this case I think you have a good idea. I just have to convince the
sales drone that I am serious and not wasting time. I'll check and see if
they have the passives as well.


> A/B comparisons of things that are pretty close drive people nuts.
> Don't worry about not making that comparison. Or if you have
> sufficient balance on your credit card, buy both the actives and
> passives, and keep the one that's the best deal for you, sound- and
> budget-wise. Or return both and try something else.

I know!
Wow do I know!
I've been at this since before Christmas, off and on, and I must have
listened to 50 different monitors including some in studios that my
friends run and it does get very confusing.
I have come to the conclusion that it is virtually impossible to A+B
monitors in a store, even at the off hours that I go and shop to avoid the
crowds.
March 14, 2005 5:48:21 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 10:34:34 -0500, Ethan Winer wrote:

> Stephanie,
>
>> should I go with the Event actives <
>
> I never get into discussion about "which speaker is best," but I can offer
> my standard blurb on the advantage of active versus passive loudspeakers:
>
> There are many advantages of active monitors for the typical project studio,
> besides a simpler hookup with less pieces to carry if you ever do remotes:
>
> Active speakers are typically bi-amped, which often yields a cleaner sound
> with less distortion. And bi-amping offers more ways to optimize the
> crossover performance because it uses active rather than passive components.
> Also, the power amps will be well matched to the speakers, they won't have a
> fan, and the wires from amp to speaker are shorter which improves damping.
> But to me the overwhelming advantage, as implemented in the Mackies anyway,
> is that the woofer cone's motion can be included within the power amp's
> feedback loop to reduce distortion by a significant amount.
>
> --Ethan

Thank you Ethan, that makes a lot of sense!
March 14, 2005 5:53:59 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 09:07:38 -0500, Arny Krueger wrote:

> "Stephanie" <ben_was_a_rat@yahoo.com> wrote in message
> news:39kg97F61ibt8U1@individual.net
>> Hello all!
>> I'm looking at the Event Studio Precision 8's to replace my current
>> Berhinger Truth (don't ask) monitors.
>
> In all seriousness, why can't we ask?
>
> What don't you like about the little Behrs - it might give a clue about what
> the next step should be.

I have the Truth B2031's and I find the highs to be way too forward on
them and the lows to be hyped. While I have learned to adjust for this
over the time I have been using them I find them fatiguing to listen to
for extended periods of time even when just playing commercial CD's for
background music.
March 14, 2005 6:00:46 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 04:30:27 -0800, dale wrote:

>
> what speakers did you use to compare the two? (if they did not show any
> difference how good are they for mixing?) and what was your sound
> source ? (was it a mp3, no real details)

See my reply to Mike, I should have been clearer.
Using a mixture of sounds, no mp3 and at normal levels.
Pushing things I can hear the differences and on my living room maggies I
can hear the difference for the short time I tried it.

> active speakers have the advantage of having the amp / speaker
> interface tweaked to provide the best sound possible.(of course there
> are manufacurer's retail price considerations) but if something goes
> wrong everything must go to the repair shop. with seperates you can do
> an upgrade one component at a time.

Good point!

> look into the dynaudio or pmc passive speakers, spend the $1100, the
> hafler should be good enough to start with either
> < http://www.macmidimusic.com/level.itml/icOid/98 >
>
> dale


Thank you for the link it is very helpful!
Steph
March 14, 2005 8:16:52 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On Sun, 13 Mar 2005 22:55:36 -0500, Stephanie wrote:

> Hello all!
> I'm looking at the Event Studio Precision 8's to replace my current
> Berhinger Truth (don't ask) monitors.

What don't you like about the truths and which model do you have?
I've heard them and don't feel they are *that* bad and in fact within
their limits they are decent sounding. I just don't like Behringer as a
company.
As of late I'm not thrilled with Mackie's move to China either but that's
another story.


> I already have a nice Hafler amp that puts out about 125w/ch and I don't
> mix at high levels as a rule. I also have a Samson amp that puts out
> around 150w/ch and to be honest I don't hear any difference between it and
> the Hafler although the build quality of the Hafler is much better.
> I know Samson has a miserable reputation, but.......

Push the amps a little and you will hear a difference, even with the
Truths.
Trust me.
Samson amplifiers are one step above the car amplifiers that JC Whitney
sells which put out 300 watts per channel and cost $69.99.

> So my question is, should I go with the Event actives @ $1,100/pair on
> sale at GC or go with the passives @ about $650/pair at Sweetwater (I
> think that price is a wee bit high!).

Personally I don't like the sound of the Event SP8's because they sound
too hyped to my ears. The bottom is much tighter than the 20/20 models but
the sound is just too, for lack of a better word, hyped.
They are great for listening to music on, but I don't think they would be
a good choice for mixing because I have my doubts as to how well mixes
will translate to other systems.


> Thoughts?
>
> Anything else I should consider at the $1500 and below price point?
>
> Steph

I don't think you can go wrong with the Dynaudio BM15 passives or if you
don't need the extra bottom end, the BM6's.

Rip Rowen at Pro-rec.com gave the BM6's a very good rating, but then again
he hated the Tannoy 800a's which I find to be a very nice sounding monitor
within it's frequency range. I don't know why he clobbered it in the
review but it does NOT sound anything like the BM6 which he liked so it's
a personal preference I suspect.
Just food for thought!

The others have given you very good advice but if I can leave you with one
thought, listen to the Events again before you decide because you may
change your mind about them.
Good luck!

SteveO
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
March 14, 2005 11:46:32 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

In article <39m81vF6401eoU1@individual.net> ben_was_a_rat@yahoo.com writes:

> > Does Guitar Center have the passive version (at any price)? If so, why
> > not buy a pair, listen to them with your amplifiers at home, and if
> > you like them, keep them and enjoy the savings. If you don't like
> > them, return them, buy the actives,

> I'm the shy type :( 
> IOW the person who never sends food back at a restaurant.
> But in this case I think you have a good idea. I just have to convince the
> sales drone that I am serious and not wasting time. I'll check and see if
> they have the passives as well.

One of the problemes today is that there are so many people selling
audio gear at cutthroat discounts that it's hard for an old time
dealer who wouldn't think of selling you a speaker unless you had an
opportunity to hear it in your own workspace to make a profit.
Sometimes you just gotta have chutzpah and play their game. And
occasionally you can find a responsible salesman at a Guitar Center
(but it's difficult).

> I have come to the conclusion that it is virtually impossible to A+B
> monitors in a store, even at the off hours that I go and shop to avoid the
> crowds.

That's for sure. And it's the rare store that actually takes any care
with the placement of the monitors that they have on display. If it
fits on the shelf, that's where it stays. Some are too close to a wall
or a corner so they have too much bass. Or you listen to a monitor
that's out in the open and put it in the wrong place when you get it
home.

When do you have time to get any work done when you're checking out
all of those monitors? <G>



--
I'm really Mike Rivers (mrivers@d-and-d.com)
However, until the spam goes away or Hell freezes over,
lots of IP addresses are blocked from this system. If
you e-mail me and it bounces, use your secret decoder ring
and reach me here: double-m-eleven-double-zero at yahoo
Anonymous
a b C Monitor
April 5, 2005 2:56:58 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"Steve" <steveo1365@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:39mgq3F61ntb0U1@individual.net...

>
> I don't think you can go wrong with the Dynaudio BM15 passives or if you
> don't need the extra bottom end, the BM6's.
>
> Rip Rowen at Pro-rec.com gave the BM6's a very good rating, but then again
> he hated the Tannoy 800a's which I find to be a very nice sounding monitor
> within it's frequency range. I don't know why he clobbered it in the
> review but it does NOT sound anything like the BM6 which he liked so it's
> a personal preference I suspect.
> Just food for thought!


Let me add another vote for the Dynaudio BM6 passive.

Predrag
!