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Nearfield monitors and room size


Senior Member
Another vote for the Primacoustic panels. :thumbsup: Those were the panels I was alluding to in my first post. I used to DIY, but on this last treatment, going with Primacoustic was worth it to me for the quality, the appearance, and the time-saving from DIY. You are definitely better off spending money on panels and getting a basic set of inexpensive quality monitors rather than spending thousands on monitors without any treatment.


Senior Member
if this is your first studio, I would say that you are not going to be doing any critical mixing in which case perfection is not needed...my suggestion is to position the speakers firing down the longer portion of the room, not the narrower one (if you can)...Also placing the speakers away from the walls is better regardless of the speakers or size. And while you should get speakers that you like, it does matter which speakers you get because some perform better in non-ideal spaces...some are more forgiving. One that comes to mind in the 5" monitors is the JBL 305...they have a wide sweet spot and don't need to be blasted to give you a decent sound. The Yamaha H7/5 is also a good choice for all around performance...these lower budget monitors are meant to be used in less than perfect rooms...if you start spending a lot more for monitors, it's generally assumed that they will be in a well treated room. Bottom line is, unless your room is well treated, there is no sense in spending a lot on speakers because even the best will sound terrible...Go 6" if you can for the extra bass, but honestly, if you are not mixing critical projects, the JBLs in a less than ideal room will sound just fine as long as they're not blasted. Also take a look at the IKMultimedia Micro monitors and their bigger brother...reasonable/small footprint, and fairly accurate no matter the environment. Lastly, headphones are your friend in this situation...use them to check the low end.


New Member
Also....consider getting 'Sonarworks 4' room treatment mic/software for 'tuning' your room.

It's never failed me, and I've never had a complaint or heard anything wrong with my mixes having heard them over various playback sound systems.

Not all of us can afford to do 'million dollar makeovers' for studios, so 'Sonarworks 4' is invaluable.

As a bonus, it'll help cure your headphone mix sound to give you a rough idea of what your actually mixing. You can even do a decent final mix using headphones if you're absolutely stuck for time or whatever.

But, I've moved locations a few times since I've been using Sonarworks and it's never failed.

Do you best room treatment though as you can within budget!
I can attest to SonarWorks. It's gives you two outcomes - first you get to "see" how your room is sounding, the trouble frequencies. This allows you to opportunity to add the right kind of treatment to the right positions in your room to help lesson (not remove) those troubled areas. The 2nd outcome it offers is the room correction algorithm (plugin) that sits between your main mix and your main outs to adjust for those frequencies. In theory you could just rely on this and save yourself some money on putting in room treatment, but in my experience you get a better end result utilizing both approaches combined.


Lunatic - it's really that simple
Jake (and others) have made some good points that deserve to be highlighted...

If this is your first studio you probably have much to learn about studios and music production and most important - music production in your studio. Don't aim for perfection - it is the enemy of good (I think that's the quote?).

Aim to have fun making music you enjoy and work towards your next goal from there. Which means you don't have to sweat the details of the room just yet.

Second point - there are no concrete rules of formulas or tricks - some loudspeakers want to be placed against a wall, some want to be placed IN the wall, and some want to be freestanding. The trick is to use the approach that works best for your monitors in your space. Experimentation is your friend!

And third - while I would not want to mix exclusively in headphones, don't overlook them as another tool! And if you can swing it a second set of monitor loudspeakers won't hurt either<G>.

One last thing - please be aware that room correction software (Sonarworks, IKMultimedia, Genelec, etc) does not actually correct the room, or even the room response. It corrects for problems it detects in a single point in space. Anything more requires adjustments to geometry and (sometimes) mucho treatments.

Don't misunderstand - while I am saying that it is, in the larger sense, an illusion it can be a helpful one. If you accept that it is correcting room anomalies at your listening (measuring) position, but not necessarily the entire room, you'll be fine.

Room correction software can be helpful, you just need to be aware of the limitations.
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