I’be been looking around for a while now to get me a nice set of speakers for my DAW system. No simple PC speakers, but real active (i.e. self-amplified) near-field studio monitors.
How do you get a general idea of anything? By Googling, of course. This quickly gave me an overview of models and prices: I basically should spend between 100 and 1000 €/pair. I had something like 400 € in mind/in wallet. Most big music brands have some speakers (Roland, Yamaha, Alesis, Behringer, …), but the creme de la creme seems to come from specialized companies: Genelec, Mackie, Tannoy.
Making a decision on paper/screen makes no sense so I also went to a music store to listen to some speakers. I heard the Alesis M1, Behringer Truth and some other lesser known brand. They sounded OK. But then I heard the Tannoy Reveal monitors. What a difference! A much clearer sound, a very natural stereo image, very alive – but way above my budget. This is not going to be easy.
So I guess I’m still going to listen to the Tapco (by Mackie), the M-Audio and the Yamaha speakers. If none of those has a better price/performance ratio than the Reveals, I’m probably gonna go for a burgundy Tannoy Reveal Passive pair (about 450€) and hook them up to an old Onkyo amplifier I still have sitting somewhere. In time I can replace that by a decent power amplifier, or power mixer.