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best monitor speakers

The Best Studio Monitors & Speakers for Home & Pro Audio

Bottom Line
Pros
Cons
Best of the Best
Adam Audio
A7X
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Bottom
Line
The gold standard in near-field, medium-sized room monitoring. Makes mixing a pleasurable experience. Removes second guessing.
Pros
The X-ART folded ribbon tweeters creates unbelievable clarity in the high-end frequencies. Reaches down to 42 Hz at a listenable volume.
Cons
If you choose these, you'll eventually desire a subwoofer like with all good monitoring systems. The matched subwoofers for these are fairly expensive.
Best Bang for the Buck
Yamaha
HS8
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Bottom
Line
These are very well rounded monitors that are perfectly placed in the middle between entry-level and high-end options. For the value-conscious consumer.
Pros
The large 8 inch woofers are powerful enough to mix and master in a medium sized room. Can reach below 40 Hz.
Cons
The room control options are limited to a 2 dB high trim & a 2-4 dB low cut, although you should use neither and focus on acoustic treatment.
Best Budget Pick
KRK
Rokit 5
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Bottom
Line
Your cheapest entry point into monitors that can provide true studio quality results due to their flat frequency response.
Pros
Great ±2 dB variance in frequency range. Equalization options to compensate for your room's impact on the acoustic environment.
Cons
Like all small woofers, these can only reach so far in the sub-bass frequencies. In this case the limit is 45 Hz. Can benefit from a subwoofer.

The best studio monitors are those that perform the task of being as transparent as possible, while the best speakers are those that emit the most pleasing sound. This begs the question of what transparent and pleasing even mean in this context. Why does this difference even exist? We'll get to the bottom of this and more...

TL;DR - Best Budget Pick: KRK Rokit 8 - Best Overall: Adam A7X