AV-30/AV-40 for rock?

brettjrob

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I've been using a Logitech z-560 set for about six years now, but have recently moved onto an upper-floor apartment where the boomy sub is proving problematic. I'm looking into the M-Audio AV-30 or AV-40 as a more practical replacement, and hopefully a step up in sound quality as well. I spend 90% of my computer-listening time on music, so I'm not too concerned about losing the extra channels for games or movies.

My only concern is whether the bass will be sufficient for rock, which is pretty much all I listen to. For reference, I find the z-560 sub rather obnoxious and have the bass tweaked down in EQ. Still, I can't help but wonder whether years of using such a powerful (albeit low-quality) sub will leave me unsatisfied with a 2.0 setup. (And unfortunately, I don't know of any store in my area where I can try out the M-Audio models... thus this thread).

Any AV-30/40 users out there who can comment on their performance with rock/metal, please step forward!
 

Jhalf

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no. the bass wont be sufficient for rock... neither was the logi. But it will sound great. Soon you will be free of your apt and in to a house.
 

astrallite

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I think too many years spent listening to a Logitech sub does change your perception of bass. If you listened to a set of quality speakers that can hit down to 40 or even 30hz flat in room, you might still be wondering where the bass is. That's how boomy the Logitech sub is.

The AV30s/40s aren't very big nor are the drivers, so they won't produce much bass. I have a pair of Usher bookshelves that measure flat to 45hz and each one weighs more than the Z-560 sub (by quite a bit), but don't sound like they have half the "bass" of the Logitechs...so there will be quite a difference in sound going to pair of monitors.
 
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Copyright

Supreme [H]ardness
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Love my AV40's sound but finding my self ready to add a nice sub into the mix to get some more low end sound. My logitech's were louder but there seemed to be a lack of midrange.
 

brettjrob

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Update: I realized Best Buy carries the AV-30, so I picked up a pair a couple days ago, figuring I can return if necessary.

I was quite surprised by several aspects of the sound. First of all, lacking bass is DEFINITELY not an issue. If anything, the bass seems to verge on overpowering the rest of the mix at times, even without the boost switch on. Anyone looking at these sets should know that unless you insist on the floor-thumping and wall-rattling of a big sub, the bass on these should be more than sufficient.

However, so far, the highs actually seem kind of lacking. It's probably a symptom of my being used to the U-shaped response curve of the consumer Logitech system I'd been using, which had no midrange, so now the mids seem overpowering on these monitors. One thing bothering me is that drums don't sound nearly as crisp or clear as I would expect. Alas, I'm giving it a few more days to see whether I can adjust and/or they just need to be broken in.
 

jason str

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Your sound will slowly get better over the next 100+ hours or so of play, new speakers never sound quite right.
 

Copyright

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Fry's near me carries the AV40's for like 150 I think. Also myAV40's sounded better after a few weeks of jamming them. At first I was not happy with how laid back they sounded but they kept sounding better and better as I played them.
 

brettjrob

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Fry's near me carries the AV40's for like 150 I think. Also myAV40's sounded better after a few weeks of jamming them. At first I was not happy with how laid back they sounded but they kept sounding better and better as I played them.
By laid back, do you mean they sounded like the music was sort of "stuck" inside the speakers rather than being projected out to the listener (if that even makes any sense)? Was treble lacking to the point where vocals and drums seemed muffled? I'm obviously clueless with terminology, but that's the best way I can describe the issue I'm having now. At first I thought I was just accustomed to the sound of "bad" speakers and needed a couple days to adjust, but tonight I decided there's no doubt the sound I'm getting from my AV30's just isn't quite right.

A lot of people reviewing these talk about how "clear" they are in comparison to consumer-level stuff, but these are anything but clear. Muffled is really the best way to describe the music I'm hearing.

I need to decide whether to return them to BB soon, or cross my fingers and hope the "break-in" period is not only a legitimate phenomenon, but that it makes a pretty significant difference. :-/
 

jason str

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Leave them on while you sleep playing in the garage or basement for faster break in, that will speed up the break in process.
 

kkl1014

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Are you using onboard sound? Upgrading to a dedicated sound card would help your sound quality better than any small theoretical gains from burn-in.
 

Copyright

Supreme [H]ardness
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By laid back, do you mean they sounded like the music was sort of "stuck" inside the speakers rather than being projected out to the listener (if that even makes any sense)? Was treble lacking to the point where vocals and drums seemed muffled? I'm obviously clueless with terminology, but that's the best way I can describe the issue I'm having now. At first I thought I was just accustomed to the sound of "bad" speakers and needed a couple days to adjust, but tonight I decided there's no doubt the sound I'm getting from my AV30's just isn't quite right.

A lot of people reviewing these talk about how "clear" they are in comparison to consumer-level stuff, but these are anything but clear. Muffled is really the best way to describe the music I'm hearing.

I need to decide whether to return them to BB soon, or cross my fingers and hope the "break-in" period is not only a legitimate phenomenon, but that it makes a pretty significant difference. :-/



Yup, lack of treble at first for sure. But also when I tried them with onboard sound they were not impressive at all even after break in. I had them going through my ZERO DAC with an OPA627 upgrade and they sounded amazing for what I paid ~135$ shipped.
 

BERTUZZZZi

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how long does it take for them to break in?
do u guys leave bass boost on/off?

i just got these speakers and im using them on my PC with creative x-fi fidelity with no sub
thinking about getting a sub and is my sound card gonna be good enough? or do i have to get a DAC

how far are the speakers apart for u guys and how far away from these speakers r u guys sitting away from?
 

Copyright

Supreme [H]ardness
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how long does it take for them to break in?
do u guys leave bass boost on/off?

i just got these speakers and im using them on my PC with creative x-fi fidelity with no sub
thinking about getting a sub and is my sound card gonna be good enough? or do i have to get a DAC

how far are the speakers apart for u guys and how far away from these speakers r u guys sitting away from?

Sound card is probably fine. Sub will help with bass. Give them a few weeks they will sound better. I had someone tell me the same thing and I had my doubts. I was ready to go back to my logicrap Z2300's but when these things finally open up they sound great. I run them with no bass boost. Don't expect good low end sound reproduction out of these. They do well for what they are but if your wanting bass then get it from a sub. I have been looking at the 10" powered Dayton and BIC V1020.
 

brettjrob

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Yup, lack of treble at first for sure. But also when I tried them with onboard sound they were not impressive at all even after break in. I had them going through my ZERO DAC with an OPA627 upgrade and they sounded amazing for what I paid ~135$ shipped.
Yeah, I'm using onboard sound. But I have an old rig with a TBSC card and hooked the AV-30's up to that, and didn't notice much difference. The overriding factor is definitely a muffled/muddy sound and severe lack of treble from the speakers themselves, regardless of source. Honestly, going from the Logitech z560 to these in their current state is enough to make me question whether the tweeters are even functioning (slight exaggeration, but only slight).

Was the break-in process gradual or sudden for you? It's still hard to believe the sound will change enough from what it is now to make me happy, but given that I can't go back to the z560's with their uncontrollably loud sub in my current apt and can't afford any higher-end monitors as replacements, I'll probably just take your word for it and cross my fingers.
 

Copyright

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I had some Z560's also and to be honest they werent bad at all. The sub was loud but there is bass control on that thing. So did you get the AV30's or AV40's? I am not familiar with the AV30's but the AV40's are nice and probably plenty for an apartment. The AV40's arent going to keep up with the Z560's overall output but they do have a cleaner sound. Make sure your not using any EQ adjustments at first. Let them break in.
 

brettjrob

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I've got the AV-30, but from all I read, the differences in sound vs. the AV-40 should be small (other than having a bit less bass, which isn't a problem for me).

Initially, I wasn't using any EQ adjustments. Right now I've got a slight boost on everything above 5 kHz in Winamp because the treble is so intolerably weak otherwise. It helps a touch, but I'm still not satisfied.

I almost wonder if I have a defective set. Compared to my z560's, these are anything but "cleaner." Very frustrating, as this was the last set at the only local BB that carried them, so there's really no way for me to try out another set without ordering online.

I feel like I'm not getting anything but midrange out of my set. The midbass is bloated to compensate for the lack of low bass, and the treble just plain isn't there.

I'd probably just give these back and use the z560's again, but even with the bass knob turned completely down, that sub rumbles like mad. Quite a shame, cause as you said, the satellites aren't bad at all.
 

docmal

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Remember that placement of studio monitors is the most important thing! For the best possible sound you must place the speakers at ear level directed toward your head. Bass response is much better if you get the speakers up of your desk and at ear level. This imporves the sound stage and the bass response.

Also, remember that these are near field monitors and are not designed to produce a good soundstage outside of the listening zone. If you want speakers to fill the room look at bookshelfs.
 

InternationalHat

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They're $90 speakers with 3" midrange drivers and "15" watts(I'd bet on closer to 8-10). You're not going to get bass out of them. There's little excursion, almost no cone area, and even if it were a minisub, the lack of efficiency and distortion of low frequencies coming out of a 3" driver would make it sound like crap. You're just going to get sloppy midbass and you're asking way too much from that even for nearfield listening.

Mackie's smallest nearfield monitor uses a 5" driver and 55 watts. Even that won't reach below 80hz with any real authority.

Adding a sub is likely just going to imbalance the sound the other way unless you have some way of measuring your response in-room and matching efficiency. I'd look for a decent pair of bookshelf speakers or a studio monitor with a driver 6.5-8"
 
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I found the bass for the av40 overpowering and I had to turn it down. And I didn't even have bass boost on
 

InternationalHat

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I found the bass for the av40 overpowering and I had to turn it down. And I didn't even have bass boost on

F/R of those is 85Hz - 20kHz +/- 4db. I'd say you're realistically not getting much below 100hz. The midbass(100-250hz) is overpowering because it gives an impression of bass. They boost stuff in this range in factory car systems a lot. The distortion characteristics of cheap drivers used by these kind of companies are usually awful too so I imagine the bass sounds incredibly full/unnatural.

These have to sound really unbalanced. If you're coming from a logitech set though they might sound like Genelecs so who knows.
 

Lateralus

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brettjrob said:
However, so far, the highs actually seem kind of lacking. It's probably a symptom of my being used to the U-shaped response curve of the consumer Logitech system I'd been using, which had no midrange, so now the mids seem overpowering on these monitors. One thing bothering me is that drums don't sound nearly as crisp or clear as I would expect.

brettjrob said:
I'd probably just give these back and use the z560's again, but even with the bass knob turned completely down, that sub rumbles like mad.

This opinion probably won't be very popular with the bookshelf speaker crowd, but if you don't want to go all out for good bookshelves + a receiver, the Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 set might be right up your alley. Extremely clear highs which Klipsch is known for, and the sub is more well controlled and not nearly as boomy as the Logitech units (I've owned the Z560s and Z680s). My Audioengine A5s do fare better in the midrange, as well as overall audio fidelity, but they are 2x the price of the Klipsch setup and the A5s don't include a sub. The Klipsch setups are extremely good for PC speakers, and the 2.1 units don't seem to have the amp problems of the 5.1 sets. Just something to think about if you end up returning the AV-30s.
 

CyberJunk

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By laid back, do you mean they sounded like the music was sort of "stuck" inside the speakers rather than being projected out to the listener (if that even makes any sense)? Was treble lacking to the point where vocals and drums seemed muffled? I'm obviously clueless with terminology, but that's the best way I can describe the issue I'm having now. At first I thought I was just accustomed to the sound of "bad" speakers and needed a couple days to adjust, but tonight I decided there's no doubt the sound I'm getting from my AV30's just isn't quite right.

A lot of people reviewing these talk about how "clear" they are in comparison to consumer-level stuff, but these are anything but clear. Muffled is really the best way to describe the music I'm hearing.

I need to decide whether to return them to BB soon, or cross my fingers and hope the "break-in" period is not only a legitimate phenomenon, but that it makes a pretty significant difference. :-/


keep them or upgrade to the AV40's
 

CyberJunk

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F/R of those is 85Hz - 20kHz +/- 4db. I'd say you're realistically not getting much below 100hz. The midbass(100-250hz) is overpowering because it gives an impression of bass. They boost stuff in this range in factory car systems a lot. The distortion characteristics of cheap drivers used by these kind of companies are usually awful too so I imagine the bass sounds incredibly full/unnatural.

These have to sound really unbalanced. If you're coming from a logitech set though they might sound like Genelecs so who knows.

Genelecs are so friggin expensive !
 

CyberJunk

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Remember that placement of studio monitors is the most important thing! For the best possible sound you must place the speakers at ear level directed toward your head. Bass response is much better if you get the speakers up of your desk and at ear level. This imporves the sound stage and the bass response.

Also, remember that these are near field monitors and are not designed to produce a good soundstage outside of the listening zone. If you want speakers to fill the room look at bookshelfs.

yup these are meant to be in your face great for a PC speaker set up because most people sit close to their pc speakers
 

A13X

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Whether or not they have enough rock depends totally on the type of "rock" you listen to. For the vast majority of "rock", the av40s will do fine, as pretty much all the bass in pop rock comes from bass guitars most of the time, which usually don't go below 50hz. If you're in to progressive fusion rock stuff like jordan rudess that has a lot of synth action, you're going to be missing out on a good bit of the low stuff.
 
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