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Helix through 8" Studio Monitors

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I previously had M-Audio BX-5a's and was not satisfied with those with Helix and guitar and bass.

 

On a mission and about a $500-$600 budget, I went to Guitar Center with Helix and guitar and bass in hand and went through all of the 8" studio monitors.  The sales rep hooked me up to the audio switcher and closed the door so I could crank them a bit.  I went through JBL, Yamaha, KRK, Mackie, M-Audio, Presonus and Tannoy.   I walked out with a pair of Tannoy Reveal 802.

 

In general, I thought the front ported monitors sounded best.  The Tannoy's were smooooth with strong, tight bass.  They sounded great in the GC studio room and at home as well.  They carry bass guitar nicely too.  Before these, I was contemplating a sub, but no need now.  They are pretty good size though, but worth it if you have the desk space.  They can get LOUD.

 

The stock Helix cabs sound A LOT better through these than they did through Sennheiser HD280's, M-Audio BX5a's, or JBL Eon 515xt's.  IR's sound great as well too. 

 

I'm curious about other's experiences with 8" monitors.  They seem perfect for the home studio and Helix application.

 

http://www.tannoy.com/creation/products/Recording/Reveal/Reveal-802/

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I previously had M-Audio BX-5a's and was not satisfied with those with Helix and guitar and bass.

 

On a mission and about a $500-$600 budget, I went to Guitar Center with Helix and guitar and bass in hand and went through all of the 8" studio monitors.  The sales rep hooked me up to the audio switcher and closed the door so I could crank them a bit.  I went through JBL, Yamaha, KRK, Mackie, M-Audio, Presonus and Tannoy.   I walked out with a pair of Tannoy Reveal 802.

 

In general, I thought the front ported monitors sounded best.  The Tannoy's were smooooth with strong, tight bass.  They sounded great in the GC studio room and at home as well.  They carry bass guitar nicely too.  Before these, I was contemplating a sub, but no need now.  They are pretty good size though, but worth it if you have the desk space.  They can get LOUD.

 

The stock Helix cabs sound A LOT better through these than they did through Sennheiser HD280's, M-Audio BX5a's, or JBL Eon 515xt's.  IR's sound great as well too. 

 

I'm curious about other's experiences with 8" monitors.  They seem perfect for the home studio and Helix application.

 

http://www.tannoy.com/creation/products/Recording/Reveal/Reveal-802/

 

I am curious, how did you think the KRK monitors compared? They are fairly standard fare.

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I am curious, how did you think the KRK monitors compared? They are fairly standard fare.

The KRKs were a close second to me. I'm not a pro studio engineer by any means, but to me the Tannoys had tighter bass and seemed louder. Little smoother top end too. I didn't feel the urge to tweak the Helix global eq.

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I use Yamaha HS80m's and I think they sound fantastic. Plenty of bass and options to tweak for the room with the switches on the back. 

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I didn't think any of them sounded bad. All of the 8" monitors sounded better than my BX5a's. It was a good experience to try them all side by side. I play mostly mid to high gain stuff too along with bass. High gain seems a little more sensitive to the speakers, headphones, cab/IR models, etc. Anyway, its likely just personal preference but I did like the Tannoys best for what I put through them.

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A pinch higher in price, but coming from the Event 20/20 world my next set of monitors will be Adam A7x's.  

 

Do not overlook eBay as a good source for decent studio monitors.  Buyer beware and all, but decent studio monitors can be had for a lot less than you might think.  Many of them in unopened boxes, just last years model or whatever.    Even the "used" part of Guitar Center sites..  some amazing deals.

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I have to say - i'm LOVING  my M-Audio  BX8  Carbon monitors.    compared with the PA i use before  they are especially good when playing JTV Acoustic and Archtop models.   Brings out all the subtleties much better. 

 

And i've also been playing the JTV 59   Les Paul model - but transposed down an octave to become a bass.  Sounds almost Fender Precision-ish. Even though those actually use single coils. 

 

But does mean I need to get a  PA that is similarly flat and sounding...   or use separate sets of presets. 

 

Or.....  L6 could introduce a multiple Global EQ PRESETS feature - to compensate for several different playing situations.....   


I didn't think any of them sounded bad. All of the 8" monitors sounded better than my BX5a's. It was a good experience to try them all side by side. I play mostly mid to high gain stuff too along with bass. High gain seems a little more sensitive to the speakers, headphones, cab/IR models, etc. Anyway, its likely just personal preference but I did like the Tannoys best for what I put through them.

 

 

 

I'd say going 8"  makes a lot of difference from 6 or especially 5".  Even though I believe they share the same circuitry inside. 

 

My take-home - is the bigger the woofer the more guitarists are likely to get the THUMP and "air" thing. 

Just be prepared to move the monitors away from walls - plus that big they're no longer really "Near-field" 

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Buyer beware and all, but decent studio monitors can be had for a lot less than you might think.  Many of them in unopened boxes, 

 

Exactly - thats how I got my BX8 Carbons'   they were unwanted customer returns. As new.... for £200  the pair   :)

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I have to say - i'm LOVING my M-Audio BX8 Carbon monitors. compared with the PA i use before they are especially good when playing JTV Acoustic and Archtop models. Brings out all the subtleties much better.

 

And i've also been playing the JTV 59 Les Paul model - but transposed down an octave to become a bass. Sounds almost Fender Precision-ish. Even though those actually use single coils.

 

But does mean I need to get a PA that is similarly flat and sounding... or use separate sets of presets.

 

Or..... L6 could introduce a multiple Global EQ PRESETS feature - to compensate for several different playing situations.....

 

 

 

 

I'd say going 8" makes a lot of difference from 6 or especially 5". Even though I believe they share the same circuitry inside.

 

My take-home - is the bigger the woofer the more guitarists are likely to get the THUMP and "air" thing.

Just be prepared to move the monitors away from walls - plus that big they're no longer really "Near-field"

Yeah, I like to stand when I play even at home. So I am definitely in the mid-field range. Also I learned from research and discovered first hand that the front ported monitors are much more forgiving to their room and location/position.

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I ended up with the Tannoy Reveal 502s when I went on my search. Needed something smaller than 8" for desk space reasons, and the Tannoy's sounded "clearer" with better low end then anything else in that size/price-range at GC. I thought the 502s had better bass response as far as clarity went than some of the 8s I tried (Mackie, KRK).

 

Every pair of KRK's I've plugged into sound overly bright and somehow slighly boxy and hollow simultaneously.

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I use a a JBL EON610 as my floor monitor for Helix and vocals - no stage amp anymore. It needs to be warmed up a little with some additional high cut on the IR. It sounds OK, but not all that inspiring I guess. But since I wear ear plugs, nothing's going to be that great sounding to me. My ears ring like crazy if I don't wear the ear plugs, and it only takes a song or two. 

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