If you need to mix music in a studio or listen in on a track, headphones offer a limited listening experience. You will also need studio monitor speakers to hear how the music in the room sounds. It doesn’t matter if you work in a professional studio or have a studio in your home office.
Professional studio monitor speakers are not as expensive as they used to be, but they deliver high quality. They are also ideal for testing the sound during film production. Even if you only produce small Tiktok videos, you can use the monitor speakers to test the audio quality.
We’ve looked around to see which studio monitor speakers are best suited to give you a good listening experience even in a normal setup and to get the sound across clearly.
The 10 Best Studio Monitor Speakers in 2021
Last update on 2021-02-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Read more detailed reviews of each product below:
10. IK Multimedia iLoud Micro Monitors
One of the great advantages of these studio monitor speakers is that they can be placed anywhere. In a professional studio, they sound best on a stand. In a home studio, you can put them on your desk or a shelf. They are designed so that the sweet spot is exactly where you are. You can use them with normal 3.5mm stereo cables or control them via Bluetooth connection. One box also has a small manual equalizer on the back, which allows you to switch between Flat and Desk, Flat and HF-3dB, and Flat and LF -3dB.
Both speakers are powered by a common power supply and connected to each other with a four-pin cable. The subwoofer brings out the bass without drowning out the sound or being obtrusive. This is especially important when the speakers are quite close to you, for example, on a desk. These monitor speakers deliver a flat frequency response varying from 55 Hz to 20 kHz.
9. M-Audio AV42 Speakers
When it comes to versatile studio monitor speakers, the M-Audio system provides many options. Those black boxes are not only a good choice for music and video production but also great loudspeakers for gaming. The speaker provides 10 watts per channel through the built-in amplifier, enough for a proper sound check in a small room or when you sit close. Those speakers are not made and intended to fill a concert hall with music.
The front panel has a standard headphone jacket 1.8mm, so you connect a player, smartphone, or tablet. The second port is for your headphones. At the back, you can plug in stereo cables and the cables to connect the other speaker. Always remember that you have a left and a right speaker, and you place them accordingly. This is in particular important when mixing tracks and using the left and right stereo tracks.
8. Edifier R2000DB Powered Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
This pair of loudspeakers has an appropriate design with the faux wood side panels and provides some excellent choices for connecting to your mixer or computer. Most studio monitor loudspeakers are just fine with a standard 3.5 stereo cable or a headphone jacket. But here we have a Bluetooth connection and, even better, optical input When using optical cables, you have basically zero loss in quality.
Edifier also developed an eagle eye technology for their tweeter, built with a 25mm silk dome. You get a much clearer sound without the crispy edges other tweeters sometimes have. With the Digital Signal Processing (DSP) and Dynamic Range Control (DRC), distortion is a thing of the past. Just lean back and enjoy your sound!
7. KRK RP5G3-NA Rokit 5 Generation 3
These studio monitor speakers provide exceptional accuracy and performance for mastering, mixing, playback, and recording. The system comes with a one-inch soft dome tweeter and a 5-inch composite woofer featuring glass-Aramid. The speakers can deliver high frequencies ranging up to 35kHz.
These speakers also provide an extended bass response along with vocal clarity. The engineered surface successfully reduces distortion due to diffraction while the bass port reduces coupling at the boundary which, in turn, allows the user with flexible positioning. Due to numerous input connections, these speakers can be integrated easily into various system configurations.
6. NEW: JBL Professional Next Generation Speaker
JBL has successfully managed to put a great amount of performance and value in these speakers. Even though these speakers don’t provide wireless streaming and need a different set-up approach than the average speakers, they will be a great addition to your home studio.
Those speakers are more in the pro team, even with the pretty low price. You can see this when looking at the back panel: It has balanced XLR-Input and 1/4″ TRS inputs. You can adjust the settings with a boundary equalizer and a HF trim for different dBA settings. With a wide angle the sweet spot is bigger than with other models, so you can also use it in a music studio where you have more space or as a floor monitor.
5. PreSonus Eris E4.5
Despite its low cost and compact size, these studio monitor speakers do not fail to provide exceptional sound quality. They are ideal for small home studios and can also work as high-fidelity speakers when used as computer speakers. If you want to recheck the sound, you can use it with a headphone amplifier on the front panel.
Due to the 4.5-inch low-frequency Kevlar transducers, silk-dome tweeters, professional controls for acoustic-adjustments, and class AB amplification/speaker, these speakers will not disappoint you. The even frequency response have made speakers from Eris well known and you can find them in studios around the world.
4. Edifier R1700BT Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
The greatest thing about these studio monitor speakers is the convenience it provides. By pairing your tablet, computer, or phone with Bluetooth, you can have a wireless and hassle-free experience. Furthermore, it also comes with 2 aux input ports to connect two devices conveniently instead of constantly plugging into one device and then switching it.
They are slightly tilted, so you need a bit of a space between the speakers and yourself to hit the sweetspot. The remote control is a nice feature when you want to switch between the inputs or increase the volume. Two Aux inputs give you some flexibility and you can pair those studio monitor loudspeakers with your iPhone or Android phone too.
3. Edifier S2000pro Powered Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers
Listed among one of the favorite studio monitor speakers, these speakers feature 5.5-inch woofers and flat diaphragm tweeters, making them ideal for studios, as well as for your home. Bluetooth v4.0, coupled with an aptX decoder, enables you to play music and podcasts from your smartphones easily.
Coaxial and optical inputs enable high quality audio connections for those who want loss-free audio streaming. The speakers also have aux inputs. All of these features are packaged within a speaker with birch sideboards. The wooden look makes the speakers even decorative. For added convenience, these studio monitor speakers come with a remote control.
2. Mackie CR Series CR3
These studio monitor speakers provide not only great performance but also design and sound. They are great for multimedia creation and gaming. Professional-grade components allow optimized sound performance, while an ultra-wide frequency enables full-range multimedia ranging from 80 Hz to 20 kHz.
You can switch the speakers and decide which one is on the left or right. The main reason for this feature is that you can decide were the volume knob is located.
1. Edifier R1280T Powered Bookshelf Speakers
This Edifier R1280T is an affordable studio monitor speaker with a nice design. It comes with two aux input selections depending on balance or unbalanced sources. You have old-style bass, treble, and volume knobs on the side of the right speaker. If you want to protect the membranes, you can use the mesh cover provided in the set.
The 13mm silk dome tweeter provides studio sound quality, while the 4-inch full-range unit allows natural sound reproduction. These studio monitor speakers come with a remote control so that you can adjust the volume using your fingers. These speakers come with a 2-year warranty, and a wood effect vinyl and a wood-build finish work well with all decors.
Factors to Consider When Buying a Studio Monitor Speaker
To ensure that you get your hands on only the best studio monitor speakers, make sure that you consider these factors:
- Price: It is known that the more money you spend, of better quality, more power, and highly accurate monitor speakers will be. But this doesn’t mean you cannot get good quality for a lower price. As studio monitor speakers come in a wide variety, you can even find one that fits your budget. In fact, some of the best studio monitor speakers are very budget-friendly! You will see this in our shortlist.
- Size of tweeter and woofer: Consider the woofer and tweeter’s material and the overall quality of the build. The bigger the monitor speaker, the greater capacity they will have for frequency. The overall material and the build are also crucial. The ideal material for the two is fiber and carbon.
- Size of the monitors: Some monitors come with ample space for working while some only come with a small desk. Remember, don’t let the size of the studio determine the monitor that you should buy. So, make room if you really need to for a better quality monitor studio speaker.
- Active speakers or passive speakers? Active speakers are more common and are more liked by the general public. Meanwhile, passive speakers require some amplification. However, some people prefer to have speakers who want to customize rather than those with good power and sound quality. Think about which ones you want before continuing.
- Is a subwoofer needed? Some people feel the need for a subwoofer when it comes to music production, while others don’t. If you have a pair of studio monitors, then for home studios and small uses, the two will be fine because they provide a good amount of low-frequency sound. It is often said that subwoofers negatively affect the accuracy of the sound and boost the bass. However, you can switch off the subwoofer whenever you want.
As you can see, there are a lot of studio monitor speakers you can go for. Just make sure you opt for one that can provide you with the features you’re looking for. While all of the studio monitor speakers on the list are of high quality, the Edifier R1280T Powered Bookshelf Speakers make a great buying choice if one were to choose.