Shopping for Studio Monitors

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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby Generic » Mon Apr 06, 2015 1:44 pm

Curiously, the 1/4" input on the back of the Tannoy is specifically labelled "unbalanced input." (I'll take a pic when I get home.)

Do you think "Unbalanced" means something different in this context, or that Tannoy somehow designed this monitor to compensate for the expectation that people like us would use their guitar cables?
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby jb » Mon Apr 06, 2015 2:02 pm

TRS (Tip-Ring-Sleeve):
TipsTricks02.gif
TipsTricks02.gif (4.85 KiB) Viewed 1289 times


XLR [which is also a "balanced" type of cable -- Ken]:
medscaleKM1FMMS_2.jpg
medscaleKM1FMMS_2.jpg (29.24 KiB) Viewed 1289 times
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby ken » Mon Apr 06, 2015 2:20 pm

Thanks JB. That makes sense. XLR cables are also balanced.

Since you have a balanced input on your speaker, something like this would be most appropriate: http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/BPBQXM5
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby fluffy » Mon Apr 06, 2015 7:27 pm

ken wrote:I was looking around for a link to support this claim. I think this issue is much more critical when running cable from amplifier to speaker. Less so when running line level gear. The premise is that guitar cable is for a fairly low output source (guitar pickups) and a power amp is sending a LOT OF JUICE that the cable can't really handle properly. This is a pretty good explanation: http://www.sonicsense.com/resourcecente ... ker-cables


I'm sorry, but this has absolutely nothing to do with the situation of sending a line-level output from an audio interface into the line-level input of a powered monitor. 1/4" guitar cables are just fine for Jon's monitors (and I would be really, really, really surprised if he had speaker cables as described in that article - and such cables wouldn't be appropriate for hooking up the monitors either).

Basically, use whatever cables you'd use to hook up any line-level input to any line-level output (e.g. plugging in your keyboard into an interface or whatever).

(BUT if you have XLR outputs on your interface then use them with the XLR inputs on the monitors, of course. It's unlikely you'll hear any difference but it'll make you feel better about your setup.)
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby ken » Tue Apr 07, 2015 8:53 am

I disagree. The 1/8" included cables are "just fine" if all you care about is getting signal from one place to another. If you care about the quality of your audio, you will use the highest quality, most appropriate cables.

Jon, please test all of these claims and report back. Thank you.
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby jb » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:30 am

Well, I think we'd probably all discourage using these cables: http://smile.amazon.com/Mogami-Platinum ... ment+cable

Or, holy shit, these cables: http://smile.amazon.com/Analysis-Plus-G ... ment+cable

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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby fluffy » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:43 am

ken wrote:I disagree. The 1/8" included cables are "just fine" if all you care about is getting signal from one place to another. If you care about the quality of your audio, you will use the highest quality, most appropriate cables.

Jon, please test all of these claims and report back. Thank you.

And the most appropriate cables in this case would be XLR, but if he doesn't have that capability, a 1/4" line level cable, i.e. the guitar cables Jon already has.

Unshielded twisted pair cables are for already-amplified speaker connections. Line-level need either a shielded cable (e.g. guitar cable) or a balanced cable (e.g. XLR).

Jon's monitors take a line-level signal.

Basically, don't think of it as plugging in a speaker, think of it as plugging into an amp. Powered monitors are amps, not passive speakers.
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby Generic » Tue Jul 21, 2015 9:25 am

About a week ago I was mixing and things in my right ear started sounding fuzzy. I thought maybe I had fatigue from working too much, and kind of shrugged it off. Same thing happened the next day, only it was much more noticeable after removing my headphones. Things that had been clear in the right channel of my headphones suddenly sounded muddy in the monitor.

So I tested it. I recorded my voice in mono, kept it center-panned, and turned off my right speaker. The playback sounded fine. Then I turned off the left speaker and turned the right on. Now the playback was barely audible. The lows are fine, but the mids were suffering. No idea what happened.

I called MusiciansFriend, and they said the sellers' warranty had expired, but I was still covered by a manufacturer's warranty, and they gave me the number for Tannoy's support line. I called Tannoy, and they referred me to a service center in Las Vegas. The service center said they'd take care of it for free, but I was responsible for shipping. $17 Fedex Ground. Once they receive the package, it'll take about a week for them to repair or replace it, then send it back to me.

I'm not pleased about this development. I'm going to try to see if Tannoy will cover the shipping, but that still leaves me mixing in mono for 10 days or so. I figured I would let y'all know what happened, in case anyone else is thinking of getting this monitor. I've seen it pop up as the Stupid Deal of the Day a few times since I bought mine, and it's a very tempting offer. When they work, they're great. I happened to get one that stopped working, and so far I'm not happy with the level of support I'm getting.
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby fluffy » Tue Jul 21, 2015 10:24 am

Dang, that's unfortunate. Pretty similar to what happened to my M-Audios. Hopefully it's just a fluke and not endemic to those speakers.

(Meanwhile my Fostexes are still going strong.)
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby ken » Tue Jul 21, 2015 11:05 am

Sorry to hear that. Thanks for letting us know.

It will be a good exercise to mix in mono for a while.
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby jb » Tue Jul 21, 2015 11:45 am

yeah! mono mixing is a staple of good practice!

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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby fluffy » Tue Jul 21, 2015 1:46 pm

also release in 64kbps CBR

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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby Generic » Tue Jul 21, 2015 1:55 pm

All my early mixes were mono, and the reviews were all "This mix is bad, everything is in the center." So... yeah. It's not like I've been in an actual Song Fight in the last year and a half anyway.

I'm all about the silver linings this month. Sure, bring on the single-speaker mixes.
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby ken » Tue Jul 21, 2015 2:06 pm

Getting your balance together in Mono and then panning is fairly effective. You don't have to just leave it in mono. You must also have some headphones you can mix with instead...
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Re: Shopping for Studio Monitors

Postby Generic » Sat Aug 15, 2015 4:22 pm

The speaker came back fixed. The work order says "Re-installed tweeter cable that came off." I have no idea how the tweeter cable came off in the first place.

Also, we noticed some unusual changed in our phone bill this month. It turns out that I got charged extra for calling Tannoy's warranty department because they're located in Canada and they don't have a toll free number.

When you factor in the extra money I've spent on contacting Tannoy and shipping the broken monitor, I could have paid a little extra for better monitors. Live and learn, I guess. I'll stick with them unless they break again, but I wouldn't recommend them to anyone else at this point.
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