I Know. I know. I’m obsessed with drum monitor/headphones.
But here is the thing: During my college days, I used some pretty cheap speakers, and the result has not been the best, to say the least.
I previously told you about headphones for drummer (Link- insert URL of previous articles regarding drum headphones).
As a drummer, we often expose our ears to a long duration of fatigue and stress. So we should look for a drum monitor with active noise isolation and less amount of noise bleed. We should try to buy drum monitor/speaker system with optimum frequency range and best performance quality.
In this post, I’ll discuss about three good quality headphones, which you can use for best performance optimization.
Types of Drum Monitor: Active vs Passive
There are two kinds of drum monitor system: active and passive
Passive monitors are modular in nature. So, you have to buy equipment like an amplifier to get better output and quality. Active monitors come with all that features built in. Though, recording industry use passive speakers; a solo drummer would be way better off with an active monitor system
Power wattage plays a huge role in the quality of our studio monitor system. Power configuration can be single-amp, bi-amp, and tri-amp. Bi-amp and tri-amp configuration have flatter response and are more preferred.
Close design monitor system often leads to better sound quality. You would never go wrong with it.
There are various performance criteria over which our drum monitor are tested and benchmarked.
- Frequency Response Test- Good headphones should reproduce frequencies from 20 Hz to 20 kHz. ( General hearing range of our ear )
- Sub-woofer kick test- This test determines the depth of each our kick. In ideal case, it should all be different.
- Aliasing Test- These test determines the sample rate of our tone and help make it distinct and clear.
There’re also some other test like Mosquito tone test, audiometric test.
You can consult with this guide to learn more. (Link -http://www.audiocheck.net/audiotests_subwooferkicktest.php)
Electronic drum monitor reviews
Now, let’s dive into our review part.
Simmons DA200S Electronic Drum Set Monitor review
Simmon DA200S is a 200 watt two stereo amplifier designed for electronic drums. This amplifier is designed for drummers. So, we’re in for a treat.
Features and Performance
- The amplifier is well built and compact in size. It comes with two high range speakers to handle all our hi-hat, two mid-range speakers for our snare shot and a 12” woofer to handle all of our low sound like the base drum.
- On the front panel there are two inputs: one for drum input and another for AUX input. Drum input comes with both mono and stereo option. There is also separate volume knob to control both drum input and AUX input. It also comes with high, low, and mid volume knobs. They also have two volume control option: one for sub-woofer and another for master volume.
- This drum monitor system is designed for drummers. Each knob comes with a small groove. One can quickly turn the knob on the front panel without leaving the seat. I love this feature.
- On the back panel you’ve got two XLR line input with individual volume control so, you can easily connect it to your mixer. You’ve also got an external line-in port for connecting it to external speakers.
- The sound quality is top notch and produces distinctive high, low, and mids for you.
Simmons DA200S is a top product. However, it weighs 57 lbs so that can be a problem. Overall, I highly recommend this product to anyone, and it offers great value for money.
JBL EON612 12 Powered Speaker System review
Recently the whole EON range of JBL products went a massive makeover. Lot of improvements were made in design and usability section.
Features and Performances
- JBL EON612 is extremely light weight and looks very elegant and modern. The whole monitor is placed in acabinet with a blackish finish. It comes with four handles which help in ease of use.
- JBL EON612 consists of three self-powered two-way speakers and has a peak power of 1000w and acoustic output rating of 126 dB SPL.
- It also comes with Bluetooth capabilities and can be operated using an Android or IOS app.
- EON 612 comes with an LF waveguide with an asymmetrically shaped opening which helps in frequency balancing and producing better sound quality.
- The control panel is also clean, clutter free, and quite easy to understand. JBL 612 comes with XLR jack and can be easily connected to a mixer.
- EON 612 is quite light weight in nature and can be setup with quite an ease. So, this drum monitor system is quite suitable for outdoor activities and setup.
- EON 612 comes with high quality sound and loud amp features. Sometimes if you’re using the system in full mode, your amp gets burned out. Now, this is also not covered under warranty. So, you’ve to pay money from your pocket to get it replaced.
Overall, this is good monitor though slightly expensive. But, still highly recommended for those who wish to party outside.
Mackie SRM450v3 Loudspeaker review
If you’ve been drumming for few years, you must’ve heard about Mackie Loudspeakers. Recently they revamped their entire range of collection and added lots features and upgrades.
Features and Performance
- Mackie has a power output rating of 1000w and is quite capable handling a wide range of sound levels.
- One feature that I love is the built-in channel mixer functionality of Mackie SRM450v3. The mixer uses stereo RCA input, and you canconnect it to your smartphone with ease.
- Mackie also employs high-definition audio processing using advanced technology like phase correction, driver time alignment to bring clear and crisp sound.
- Mackie has also got another unique feature of feedback cancellation which is seldom available in other Drum monitor system. It uses four narrow bands to neutralize all types of feedback emanating from other instruments and strings feature.
- Mackie also comes with four mode option: DJ, PA, Monitor, and Solo. This helps in giving your tone a sharp edge and better sound output.
- However, you should also note that Mackie doesn’t come with any inbuilt sub-woofers. So, if you want that extra depth in frequency response, you should consider integrating any SRM powered sub-woofers in the system.
Mackie offers a lot of punch and features and comes across highly recommended.
So, if I’d to support one monitor system, I would highly recommend Simmons DA200S Electronic Drum Monitor set to you.
Let us know in the comment which monitor set are you using?
If you’re facing any issues with your monitor set, don’t hesitate to share your problems with our community.
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