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(Maybe) A Silly Question on Speakers for Editing

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Diane Reid
(Maybe) A Silly Question on Speakers for Editing
on Aug 1, 2013 at 11:58:54 pm

In my spare time I record and edit church sermons for playback on community cable. I would like to get a better set of speakers for monitoring the sound as I edit on my PC desktop. My current speakers are consumer Sony speakers that are plugged into my computer by way of the 3.5mm jack. I cannot afford the Genelecs and the like but would like something to give accurate playback.

Do you all run an amplifier through your speakers or do you connect them directly to your computer? I notice some speakers/monitors have a little more output than what I would imagine standard computers can drive. What is your regular setup to get good sound for under $150 per pair, and what is a good speaker output if I'm not supposed to use an amp.

I should also add that I had Altec-Lansing surround speakers installed and a couple of projects I edited were shot in surround sound (unbeknownst to me) and they sounded normal through the speakers but sound came from the rear channel when I checked the mastered DVD in my TV system. So I'd like to avoid future surprises such as that with whatever pair of speakers I get. Thanks for the advice, I really enjoy these forums.


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Eric Toline
Re: (Maybe) A Silly Question on Speakers for Editing
on Aug 2, 2013 at 4:24:51 am

There are two types of speaker powering and both include an amplifier. Those that require a external amplifier are known as passive speakers, those with built in amps are self powered speakers.

Best advice would be to go to a place like Guitar Center or Sam Ash and listen for yourself in your price range. A $150 dollar budget is going to limit your choices quite a bit.

For $80 a pair you can get a set of self powered Behringer MS 16 speakers that are not too shabby and will connect direcly to your computer headphone out. Double your budget and you can afford the M-Audio BX5A which is a very nice desk top system.

"I push the RECORD button and hope for the best"


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Diane Reid
Re: (Maybe) A Silly Question on Speakers for Editing
on Aug 2, 2013 at 3:00:36 pm

Thanks for the explanation and the advice! Have a great day!


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Ty Ford
Re: (Maybe) A Silly Question on Speakers for Editing
on Aug 3, 2013 at 4:36:29 pm

Hello Diane and welcome to the Cow Audio Forum.

Eric has given you good advice.

About your surround anomaly. Without being there to see and hear where things were routed for your surround project, it's difficult to give a plausible conclusion.

Was your system configured correctly?
Were your speakers and amps adjusted correctly?
Was the playback system configured correctly?
etc.

An error in any of them, all of them or something else could be responsible.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Cow Audio Forum Leader

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide
Ty Ford Blog: Ty Ford's Blog


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Larry Watts
Re: (Maybe) A Silly Question on Speakers for Editing
on Aug 4, 2013 at 11:04:06 pm

I don't want to discourage you, but the cost of speakers are just part of the equation. I speak from experience that I have edited video using very nice near field speakers only to listen to the edit in another room and hear sound that I never noticed in my edit room. (Often a hard walled conference room and TV will reveal high end frequencies more. (Sometimes a camera operator talking to the director)

The reason is that room acoustics also play a significant role. The second variable is the type of speaker the end user is listening with.

Now your situation is unique in that the audio you get is probably quite constant in that it is a sermon so some of what I'm sharing is for others reading this post.

The ideal edit environment in my opinion has flat EQ near field speakers, a set of medium sized speakers for music, television stereo speakers, headphones and finally a small mono speaker. By switching from speaker to speaker it will help you mix better. For instance, a voice with music bed will sound different with those different speakers. So sometimes you will mix to the worst possible scenario, the small mono speaker.

I know this is overkill for your current situation, but may help you with other projects.

Larry



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Diane Reid
Re: (Maybe) A Silly Question on Speakers for Editing
on Aug 7, 2013 at 1:39:36 pm

Ty and Larry, thanks for your responses and I apologize for my delay in responding.

Ty, the Altecs were plug and play computer speakers with two (color-coded) 3.5 jacks into my computer. The community TV station played the video and the audio was muffled and then I checked the master in my own TV, which is configured for SS, and I heard all the audio from the rear channels. But when played in my computer, the sound played in the front channels. Not a big deal anymore, as I changed the audio settings in the video camera that recorded those messages so that it records two-channel audio and I've ditched the computer SS.

Larry, I appreciate the additional education on having speakers to match the output environment. I will work on getting a better pair of speakers for my editing. Thanks, all, for the great advice you dish on these forums. You guys are a godsend!


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