Feel free to ask questions. I'll do my best to answer.

Monday, March 11, 2013


Well what can I say?  I guess all the front ported speaker faithfuls are fools.  I decided to try and block off these ports with cotton just like I did with the Behringer.  Guess what?  Same results...

I zoomed in so we could get a clear look.

No doubt about it, front ports have some serious drawbacks.

Here's what happens in the low end:

Typical stuff again--less midbass stuffed, but more of the deep bass.  Anyone want to make a prediction of how the A3X would behave under similar conditions?

Anyway, let's look at the meat and potatoes:

Polar response is great, and the vertical polar is great--large lobe aimed slightly toward the tweeter.  Just like I'd want it.

Subjectively, these are a lot like the A3X except more dynamic on the low end.  They too have zero audible vibration when doing the sweep and they actually measured absolutely identical.  Crazy stuff for me.  Never had that happen before.


  1. Do you recommend I purchase them to listen music (jazz and classical) 3m to 0.9 m and not put in a room of 4.25 m x 3.75 m?

    By the way, what do you think about Event 20/20 bas V3? Remember, to listen jazz and classical.

    -> http://www.eventelectronics.com/2020BAS

    Thank you very much for your measurements.

  2. Actually I'd think the ADAM ARTist 5 would be the way to go. People worry about the rear ports causing excess bass, but bass is omni and we are taking about approx 15cm difference in location. In the grand scheme if things, it may be worse or it may be better. One thing is certain: it will be better in the most audible region--the midrange.

    Those Events do not look like a particularly good idea. I just don't like front ports. Every speaker I have measured has large resonances and diffractive problems caused by the ports.

    You're welcome Maty. Hope it is useful.

  3. Thanks. Sorry from my terrible english in my comment, I should have low sugar -lunchtime ;-)

  4. Your English is better than my Spanish I assure you! :) I'm pretty sure I got your point. I just set these A5X up properly and all I can say is "wow". Hard to describe, but these ADAMs are a class above anything I've heard so far.

  5. Personally I prefer getting flat response down to ~80Hz than having more deep base when it's already more than -10dB down and I can't hear it anyway.

    That aside, my local store has the Adam monitors @ ~25% less than Amazon prices, which is a nice discount as the prices here are usually higher instead (And comparable after including shipping). While I also saw you recommending Behringer. Between this two, which one would you recommend getting?

  6. Also due to space issues I have my speakers as close to the wall as possible.

    1. Theoretically, the Mackie HR series might better fit your needs with their narrow dispersion.

  7. I'd recommend the ADAM Artist 5 above all. They are what I use.

  8. Hi Dan just a quick question. It's a while ago so you may not recall. I listened to the A3X today, and was impressed but they seemed to a lack a little definition in the mid to upper mids (or low upper mids if that makes any sense). Just wondering if you noticed any difference here subjectively. The polar pattern for the A5X looks flatter here than the A3X. Just wondering if that's the case when listening. Thanks

  9. I actually own and listen to both these speakers nearly every day. The A3X are my computer speakers and the A5X are the rear speakers in my HT. I'd definitely take the A5X over the A3X if size were no problem(not the case with my computer desk), but for a few hundred more dollars I'd just get the ARTist 5 over the A5X. In a few months or years the approx $200(see, I already forget how much) more will be long forgotten. They sound as perfect as any speaker I've heard and the measurements back it up.
    The A5X are very balanced, but I utterly despise the front port design flaw. Yes, I consider it a design flaw.

  10. Thanks Dan. That's a big call saying they are as perfect as any speaker you've heard. Don't get me wrong, you've made me interested. Are you saying they are the best in their class, or the best full stop?

  11. All they lack is bass--not a problem if you have plenty of subs(and you should anyway).

  12. Hello Dan,

    Interesting article, I own a pair of A5X monitors, and would like to attempt plugging the ports with torn up auralex foam pieces. You think this would have the same effect as your cotton? Also, when you mean "if you have plenty of subs", do you mean plenty of subwoofers? If so...how many is plenty enough? I was thinking about buying a Krk 10s to match with my A5X.

    By the way, sorry for reviving such an old threat...

  13. I'd bet the foam would work very similarly.

  14. I use 4 subwoofers to smooth out the low end response in my room. One sub, unless placed extremely close to your head, will usually leave the bass response with a lot of peaks and steep valleys. I can get a nearly identical response in my room with 3 or 4 subs, but I feel a bit safer with 4 and it is slightly smoother.

  15. No worries about reviving this old thread. That's why they are here.

  16. Oh ok, 4 seems a bit much for my small room. Right now I have my home studio set up in a 10x11x9 ft room. Very tiny! Maybe I can get away with one? If not 2?

  17. You can definitely get away with one depending on where you are willing to place it. Check out this look at various subwoofer types and placements: https://mehlau.net/audio/dual_nearfield_sub/

  18. Hi Dan! Back with some good news, I picked up a JBL LSR310S subwoofer 10" and placed it according to a single sub on your diagram you linked and I got it set well. Plugged the ports with the A5X monitors, but it seems like the volume gets quieter. Is it supposed to do that? Should I just turn the volume on the A5X up?

  19. Without measurements it's hard to say what would be the best thing to do. You can see that the mid bass does get quieter, but that may be "better" or it may be "worse" depending on your particular set up.

  20. Dan, thank you for your extensive comments and analysis. I was looking at the A5X but based on what you said, I'm buying the Artist 5, which also looks a lot nicer on a desk.

    I was wondering how you would connect the speakers to your PC. I gather they offer the possibility of direct USB connection (male to male USB wire?). I assume that means the speakers automatically use their built-in DAC. How good is that?

    I also have a Dragonfly 1.2 and was thinking of using that and connecting it to the speakers with a 3.5mm mini plug. And then there's the option of running an RCA adapter to the Dragonfly and using RCA cables...

    Any views?

    Thank you and regards,

  21. You're welcome Larry. Glad it could help.

    I've only connected these using the XLR input. They do have a USB and RCA and RCA with a 'stereo link' so that you can control the level of both with one volume pot. Not sure which way would be technically your 'best' option. I know the way I have them now works extremely well with no added audible noise. They are the longest lived speakers I've ever owned and I have no desire to change them. Well, I wouldn't mind trying out their Column mk3 speakers but I can't bring myself to believe that the SQ change(hopefully improved to some degree) would be worth the cost.

    The USB would be an A male to B male type. I would assume their converters are competent, but I really can't say as I haven't tried them.

    My computer audio is actually the A3x which desperately need subs. I run the with TS outs of my I/O converted to RCA. They have some noise issues as well that I've never tracked down. When I had them in my HT as surrounds, they had no readily audible noise so it's not necessarily the speakers. It could be the RCA vs. XLR, could be the monitor, the I/O etc... I've just been to lazy to get to the bottom of it. When I really want to listen, my HT is where I go.

    Not sure how much that helps, but it's about all I've got on the subject.

  22. Hey DanTheMan! How are you bro?
    Thanks for useful information's.
    Would you please make some tests about the HEDD Type 05. I heated thats so better than Adam a5x and a7x !!!

  23. I'd be will to test anything that is sent to me :)
    They still have the same issue as the ADAMs--the front port. Beyond that, the waveguide does 'look' a bit better. I'd love to hear/see how they actually are.