At the early stages of their career, every artist has to invest some money into buying sound equipment, so that he can start practicing on his music and record demo versions of his songs. It is more than possible that in the beginning the artists may not have the sufficient funds to purchase the most expensive gear, so he has acquire the appropriate equipment within the limits of his budget.
Studio monitors, are among the main tools you are going to need as a beginner artist in order to record and playback your music. Fortunately, there are several affordable monitor options available in the market for every type of best.
We recommend, especially if you are in the beginning of your music career, that you start looking for active nearfield studio monitors. They are highly recommended because they are the most easy and convenient monitors to use, due to their handy connectivity, their portability and the lack of need for technical knowledge in order to operate them.
You can search and find several cheap studio monitors, both as pair and as single units, with great functionality levels, compact sized or larger, which are capable of delivering more than decent sound quality to help you practice on your own music, songs or projects.
Best studio monitors for beginners
1 – Samson MediaOne BT3
The Samson MediaOne BT3 are among the most affordable studio monitors available in the market. They provide a very enjoyable listening experience, as they have a very smooth sound quality, equally distributed throughout the entire frequency spectrum. This fact makes them one of the best entry-level options for beginner artists.
The particular monitors need to be placed correctly in the room they are about to be used. If not, it is possible that you notice minor muddiness issues to the mid frequencies, caused by the low ends, especially when the bass has too much depth or is too heavy.
The best solution is to distance the units appropriately from each other, approximately three to four feet. The same distance should be applied from the position of the artist. Furthermore, you should apply isolation pads under the monitors, so that you can reduce the vibrations caused by the bass, and any resonance that you might notice. In addition to this, you can place panel foams to the hardest surfaces of your room, in order to avoid sound reflections.
The higher frequencies of the Samson MediaOne BT3 are very clear, and you can listen to almost every detail and individual instrument in the mix. It is not advised that you push the gain too much, as they are not the most powerful studio monitors in the market, and the high frequencies tend to become harsher as the volume goes up.
The monitors tend to work best for instruments like the guitar, the bass and most other string instruments. This is due to their nice accuracy in the mid, mid-high and high frequency, which makes the monitors capable of providing natural sounding results, without excessive boosts at any frequency bands.
The Samson MediaOne BT3 work best when used in small rooms, as they are active nearfield monitors. They deliver nice sound definition and the stereo imaging is more than decent, especially when the appropriate positioning is applied, like mentioned above.
Overall, the particular studio monitors deliver everything expected from a product at their price point. They function properly and they are very easy to set up. Their sound is more than decent, with higher levels of accuracy and focus in the mid and high frequencies. They seem to have a solid structure and a very simple design, and they come in a nice package.
2 – Elevate 3
If you are a beginner artist and you need an affordable studio monitor solution, then the Elevate 3 monitors are one of your best options. They can be used as reference monitors, or as main monitors in small home studios, and they work great in small spaces, as they are active nearfield monitors.
When you purchase the particular studio monitors, you need to dedicate three to four hours into playing music through them in moderate volume. The company claims that the monitors need those hours to be broke, and start delivering their actual sound quality. The first few playbacks are going to be average considering the quality.
The Elevate 3 have nice high frequencies, with significant detail and very bright sound. You can also notice a very slight boost in the mid frequencies, which adds a bit of color to the overall sound. Their low ends are flat, as these monitors do not focus on bass. If you want to acquire more bass, you should consider purchasing a decent sub-woofer to accompany the monitors.
Their portability levels are great. You can use them in remote locations, parties or transfer them to other home studios for addition sound power. They have great loudness, which means that you will be able to use them conveniently with lots of people and noise in the room, and they will still deliver awesome sound even when you increase the volume significantly.
The input signal headroom of the Elevate 3 monitors is low. In case you want to transmit sound from your phone or tablet, make sure that you do not turn the volume too much, as you are going to start noticing minor clipping and distortion problems, which are going to make your listening experience unpleasant. If you manage to keep the volume in average levels, they are going to work just fine and deliver the sound you expect.
The slave monitor is connected to the main one, which is powered, with a cable. Their structure is very sturdy and they feel well-built with a nice amount of weight. In addition to this, the monitors have a beautiful design and a decent finish.
To sum, the Elevate 3 sound very nice and clear, with a special focus in the mid frequencies, which adds a characteristic although subtle color to the overall sound. Their design and great built are some of their main advantages, which indicate that they are going to last over time. An amazing and affordable option for every beginner artist on a budget.
3 – TASCAM VL-S3
The Tascam VL-S3 are very compact sized active nearfield studio monitors. They deliver decent bass levels and they have awesome loudness considering their small size. They are great studio monitor for beginner artists that want to get decent sound quality for their songs or projects and they come in an extremely affordable price, which makes them accessible by everyone.
The particular monitors, work great as bookshelf speakers for personal computers or laptops, and they are perfect for podcast shows. They are highly recommended for music producers or artists that are on a very tight budget, and they cannot afford more expensive professional studio monitors.
The particular studio monitors can save significant amounts of money for the user, as they do not require an audio interface to function. You can hook them up to your PC and start using them in no time at all. To achieve this, you will need an AUX cord, which you are going to plug into your computer or laptop.
The Tascam VL-S3 deliver high quality sound very accurately, especially in the mid and high frequencies. They do not enhance certain frequency bands, and they maintain the neutrality of their sound, which is very important when it comes to editing and mixing, as they help the user determine which are the appropriate changes need to be made in order to improve the mix.
The sound representation these monitors provide is amazing, especially considering their size. Although the mid and high frequencies of the monitors are more than decent, their lower frequencies tend to be weak. If you want to enhance the bass presence for your listening experience, you should consider integrating them with a sub-woofer for warmer low ends.
One of the main advantages of the Tascam VL-S3, is the nice sounding tweeters, which produce very smooth high ends making the listening experience ear-pleasing. Furthermore, these studio monitors are significantly loud for their size, and they can be used in larger rooms, although they are perfect for smaller home studios.
All in all, these studio monitors are worth the purchase, as they deliver great sound quality results, and can also be used as reference speakers so that you can test your songs. They have weak low ends, although they provide nice detailed sound when it comes to mid and high frequencies. Their nice built and low price are nice additions to the package.
4 – Fostex PMO.4
The Fostex PMO.4 is another nice affordable active nearfield monitor solution for beginner artists. They have a beautiful compact size and as a result great portability levels, which allow you to use them in external places or while travelling, as they are very easy to carry along with the rest of your luggage.
Being very small, the particular studio monitors lack a significant amount of power to their low ends, although that is to be expected. Their mid and high frequencies are great, deliver excellent detail to the listener and they have no harshness or sharp edges, which makes the listening experience pleasant and the overall sound as smooth as it gets.
The signal of the Fostex PMO.4 is very equally distributed along the frequency spectrum, making the audio sound natural and pretty neutral, without adding too much color. That being said, the user can notice a slight boost in the mid and high frequencies, although this may be caused due to the weakness of the low ends.
These studio monitors work best in small home studios, as they are designed as nearfield monitors. You have to work with them for some time to get used to their plain and simple sound, as it differs significantly from the warm and extremely smooth sound of some of the more expensive professional studio monitors available in the market.
The Fostex PMO.4 have a nice appearance, very appealing to the eye and their structure seems solid, giving the impression that it can help them tolerate minor misuses, drop or scratches. They are very lightweight, and they come in a plain but nice packaging.
They are an awesome option considering their low price, and the extra but subtle colorization in the mid frequencies is a nice addition, because it adds to the overall accuracy of the monitors. Their tweeter works great, without adding too much brightness, and turns the focus of the listener towards the high ends instead of the weak lows. One of the highly recommended studio monitor solutions for beginner artists on a budget.
5 – M-Audio AV42
The M-Audio AV42 is a great studio monitor option due to its amazing capabilities and very affordable price. They have a very nice structure, solid built and a simplistic design that make them eye-appealing and a very beautiful addition for every home studio.
Having a very compact size, the particular studio monitors have limited low ends, making the bass sound flat and even fairly weak sometimes. You can also notice a very slight harshness in the mid-high frequencies, although it depends on the quality of the song, and it can be easily avoided if you integrate the monitors with a decent affordable audio interface to smoothen the overall sound.
For those that want to get warmer sound out of their studio monitors, you can purchase a subwoofer and connect it to the M-Audio AV42. This will make the sound smoother, and you are going to get the same levels of depth and power out of the entire frequency spectrum, as the monitors themselves focus primarily on the mid and high frequencies.
There is a remote control included in the package, so that you can adjust the volume. The units have volume knobs at their back part, so the remote control comes very handy and makes the process more convenient. Two minor downsides is the lack of an LCD indicator for the volume levels, and short connection cable included.
Overall, the sound of the M-Audio AV42 is more than decent, and becomes greater with the addition of an audio interface and the correct placement of the monitors in the room. They work best in small studios, and they have excellent mid and high frequency accuracy and response. They come in a very affordable price and they are considered to be one the nicest studio monitor solutions for beginner music producers and artists.