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> Monitoring - Philosophical Question
post Fri 23 Mar 2007, 02:06
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Forgive me if this is a stupid question, but it's something I've genuinely been wondering about.

Why use some spectacular monitoring speakers when mixing? After all, the almost everyone in the general listening audience out there doesn't have them. Wouldn't it be better to make sure the mix sounds great on some middle-of-the-road commercial stereo speakers, since that is realistically where your mix is going to be played?

I'm not sure I really buy this line of reasoning myself, but I'm just wondering what you guys think.
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post Fri 23 Mar 2007, 03:01
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There's 2 main "schools" regarding to monitoring. One says you must listen on the most accurate and neutral monitor to make the best balanced stereo/mono/whatever mix, with diamonds sharp details. The other tells you have to mix things on monitors of similar qualities as the final systems.

And anyway, everyone will tell you it's best after to listen to on as many systems as possible wink.gif

The accuracy school likes to listen to sometimes dry and chirurgical to the point to be boring means, the other may even like utterly crap things like the dreaded (IMHO) NS10. On the other end, if you follow the "mix on the final system" road, we should be mixing mp3 thru ipod headpones… laugh.gif So the monitors like these are not neutral but not "getting in". Even the word "neutral" does not mean sometimes anything else then "it doesn't get in the way I can envision the mix".

Neither is right or wrong, you should find the type of monitor the most revealing you can work to, which can be of either type or in the middle. and the most important thing is you have to KNOW the monitors, inside out, and it takes hours and hours to listening critically to well mixed material and working on mixing stuff to reach the same standards. And in this regard, it's to each is own. I tend to like chronically chirurgical unchearful monitors, but many well respected engineers (and I'm not one wink.gif work either with 2 pairs or more of both types, or even only on known to be unbalanced speakers. Now when you listen what they do, it's the important thing, it sounds right.

If the mix is right, then it'll translate well anywhere, it doesn't mean you'll hear everything on any system, but it'll be "whole" in some way anywhere. In the end, no matter what you use, it depends of your work habits, ears, musical material, the only thing really important is the final quality. Anyone can make a crappy mix from a very good spec'd system if you don't know it, but a trained engineer knowing inside out a bad system like the NS10 will get the most of them.

Just my 2 cents… cool.gif

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