M-Audio BX5A Active Monitor

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Kevlar LF Cones. Silk HF Domes. Magnetically Shielded.
Accurate studio monitors at an affordable price!
Home studio engineers may have small budgets and limited space compared to the big corporate studios, but their desire to create professional recordings is no different. The latest computer recording techniques, non-linear editing software, and digital effects processors are helping to close the gap, but there's still no substitute for an accurate set of studio monitors. That's why so many small studios are adding M-Audio's BX5a monitors to their recording rigs. These small-format speakers let you hear all of your mix at an affordable price, so you can craft your music to perfection.

Active, bi-amped power for clean tone
More than just powered monitors, BX5a's are truly active, with separate power amplifiers for each driver. This ensures a tight match between the individual speaker ratings and their supplied power. The woofer receives 40 watts, while 30 more watts are pushed out to the tweeter. Combined with a specially tuned 3kHz crossover, all frequencies from 56Hz to 22kHz are delivered to the most capable driver, and are reproduced with clarity at any volume. You'll hear a precise mix at any listening level, so you can add EQ, pan, and effects with confidence. Your recordings will speak for themselves, building your reputation as a solid studio engineer and producer.

Kevlar woofers
While most bookshelf-style monitors use paper or polypropylene for their bass drivers, the BX5a's woofer is made with Kevlar. This strong, resilient material read more delivers tight, punchy low end tone normally only found in the most expensive speakers. M-Audio recently redesigned this five-inch woofer, choosing a curved-cone design over more traditional flat-sided drivers. This produces a more accurate sonic image, making it easier to place any sound in its own space through the stereo field. Close your eyes while you're mixing, and picture the band standing in front of you. The lead singer is dead-center, belting out the melody. The guitars and bass split the stage, with the drums spread out in back. You can set up this same scene for your audience, thanks to your volume and pan controls, and the superior imaging of your BX5a monitors.

Silk dome tweeters
The best studio engineers spend hours shaping their mixes, blending everything until it sounds just right. This can be difficult to do if you use low-quality speakers, though, because unnatural treble response will quickly fatigue your ears. The BX5a uses a one-inch tweeter for natural, airy highs. Its silk dome produces crisp, sparkling tone without sounding shrill or tinny. You can mix longer and finish your projects faster, with no compromise in sound quality. Quick turnaround makes your clients happy, and leaves more time to pick up extra business. They'll be banging down your door when they hear the results!

Magnetically shielded for computer use
Since most home studios are built around a computer, there are a few extra considerations when choosing nearfield reference monitors. First, they've got to be shielded. Their large, internal magnets can cause serious problems with CRT computer screens, and even wipe out data on your hard drives. BX5a's are magnetically shielded to protect all your computer equipment from harm, and their small footprint lets you stack them anywhere when space is tight. Place them next to the video monitor while you work with your DAW software, or spread them out on adjustable speaker stands. Either way, your valuable data stays safe. The second consideration is connectivity. You're probably using some kind of digital audio interface to bring the music inside your computer, and it should also feed your speakers to avoid distracting echoes and monitoring latency. M-Audio includes both XLR and 1/4-inch input connections, so you can easily integrate into any computer audio environment.
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Frequency Response: 56Hz-22kHz

Crossover Frequency: 3kHz

Low-Frequency Amplifier Power: 40 watts

High-Frequency Amplifier Power: 30 watts

Signal-to-Noise: > 100dB (typical A-weighted)

Polarity: positive signal at + input produces outward LF cone displacement

Input Impedance: 20k Ohms balanced, 10k Ohms unbalanced

Input Sensitivity: 85mV pink noise input produces 90dBA output SPL at one meter with volume control at maximum

Power: Factory programmed for either 115V ~50/60Hz, 230V~50/60Hz or 100V~50/60Hz; protection: RF interference, output current limiting, over temperature, turn-on/off transient, subsonic filter, external mains fuse

Cabinet: vinyl laminated MDF

Size: 250 mm (H) x 176 mm (W) x 200 mm (D)

Weight: 5.0 kg/unit
For support or warranty questions, please contact the manufacturer:
Phone: 401-658-5765

M-Audio Studiophile BX5A Monitor

The BX5a refines M-Audio's highly acclaimed BX5 near-field reference monitors, renowned for packing a lot of punch for their size. The new 5 in. low-frequency driver cones are crafted from Kevlar, an extremely resilient material typically found in much more expensive monitors. Curved cone design coupled with high-temperature voice coils and damped rubber surrounds deliver incredible fidelity and durability. The 1 in. high-frequency drivers' magnetically shielded natural silk domes produce crisp top end while still being gentle on the ears. Integral cabinet and electronic engineering work together to deliver improved bass response. The 70-watt bi-amped power and expertly tuned crossovers round out an incredible sounding pair of reference monitors with a footprint small enough to fit just about anywhere.

Kevlar Drivers
M-Audio's new BX5a employs Kevlar for low-frequency driver construction. The same material used in bulletproof vests, Kevlar's high resilience makes it ideal for use in speaker cones -- although it is typically reserved for monitors with higher price tags than the BX5a. Needless to say, Kevlar represents a significant improvement over the polypropylene and paper used in most monitors for this price.

Magnetically Shielded for Desktop Use
Unchecked, the electromagnetic waves emanating from your speakers can wreak havoc with your computer's video monitor or a nearby TV. The BX5a is magnetically shielded so that all of your electronic equipment can coexist on your desktop without interference.

Bi-Amplified Efficiency
Active monitors have a distinct advantage over unpowered monitors, in that the built-in power amps are designed specifically to work with the drivers and crossovers in a tuned system. Bi-amplification further refines the concept by dedicating separate power amps to the highs and lows. Combined with a finely tuned crossover, this design insures that both the high -- and low-frequency drivers are asked to deliver only the frequencies they are more efficient at reproducing.

Features:
Two-way studio reference monitors

70 watts of distributed power (30w HF amp, 40w LF amp)

5 in. low-frequency drivers with: curved Kevlar cones, high-temperature voice coils, damped rubber surround

1 in. natural silk high-frequency drivers

Magnetically shielded

XLR balanced and 1/4 in. balanced/unbalanced inputs

Power indicator

Volume control
(76 ratings)
Submitted August 3, 2005 by No thanks
"Nice"
This review has been selected by our experts as particularly helpful.
I'm sure I will own these with a possible sub upgrade, but they have plenty of bass for everything. When I do upgrade it will be because I can afford much much more, not because they lack anything.
Sound
The sound is very detailed, and crisp. There are no muddy spots, and everything comes through very loud and solid. The highs sound great, and bass is not lacking. The 5 inch low end speakers will put out enough bass to shake my desk and rattle loose objects. I only have lower end monitors to compare with, but I have heard many different speakers, and these are most definitely clear and excellent sounding.
Features
No features. Power cord and no slip stick on surface for bottom of speakers included. Back inputs are 1/4 or XLR, neither of which are included. Wouldn't expect that, but would be nice. Agree with the other reviewer here, the tweeter needs a grill or protection. The 'woofer' is kevlar and very sturdy, but the silk dome tweeter looks like it could very easily get destroyed.
Quality
Nice weight, volume knob and on/off switch are very solid. Slick black surface and kevlar woofer look nice, and the connections are all very solid. It definitely feels high quality and durable.
Value
Compared to other monitors in it's price range, there is no doubt that the BX5 is the bang for the buck.
Manufacturer Support
Haven't dealt with them.
The Wow Factor
Basing speaker purchase on aesthetics is idiotic.
Musical Background:
Lifetime passion, hobby, lifestyle
Musical Style:
Experimental electronic break beat instrumental
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