Genelec Monitors


Rock Star
I've been wanting a pair of Genelec monitors for the last 5+ years and finally decided to pull the trigger.

Currently I've got two different sets of monitors...JBL 305's and iLoud Micros. The JBL's are way too big for my desk and are too hyped in the highs and lows. I have to use a lot of cuts in the cab block and even then there's a scooped midrange that doesn't work for guitar. On the other end, the iLouds sound kind of boxy and bland to me, not fun to play guitar through them at all. They use a ton of DSP to get the little speaker to sound decent and I think that may impact things. Also, the cable connections are kind of annoying and there's some intermittent noise issues.

When I tested monitors about five years ago, the Genelecs were my favorite with the clearest midrange and most impressive sound even though they were small. I'm thinking since these are only used on my desk and I only use them at fairly low volumes, the little 3" speakers should be just fine.
I've used them a lot for work and they are fine, not my favourite but there's nothing really wrong with them.
I'm quite sure you'll be happy.

I've got a pair of 305s at home and and I never liked them as an "FRFR" solution for playing guitar. Best use I found for them was listening fo music in my living room and honeslty I prefer my Presouns eris for that task so now they are unused.
I’d love to try a pair and I almost dished out a good chunk of change for some last fall but got cold feet. I’m so used to the HS-5’s at this point that my mixes are generally 95% on the spot between my studio and anywhere else I listen to. Next time I move I’ll most likely upgrade because hopefully I’m moving into a bigger studio, right now it’s just a 12x12 spare bedroom.
Picked them up and have a couple initial impressions.

They are really well built, as expected. Solid cast aluminum, grill covering for both woofer and tweeter (nice for small kids and cats), integrated isolation stands. There's an auto on/off feature that seems to work pretty well (can be disabled) and multiple adjustments using toggle switches. Size wise, they are close to the iLoud Micro monitors, maybe 50% wider but overall still a very small footprint.

Sonically, I'm a little mixed on them. They are significantly less bright than the JBL speakers which is surprising. I kind of expected them to be bright due to their size, but they're actually kind of warm. The bass response is obviously not amazing but they aren't super thin. They do seem a bit compressed/strained at the low frequencies but not nearly as badly as the iLouds. I think that's mostly due to the porting (as well as physics of a small speaker). I'll need to keep listening to them and let my ears adjust.

Playing guitar through them seems good. I need to tinker a bit, and am experimenting with reducing bass on the monitors via toggle switch (which is recommended in the manual when placed on a desk). They seem forgiving of IR's much more than other monitors, likely due to less hype in the highs.

It does kind of remind me of my Sennheiser HD 6xx headphones, which are regarded as very flat. To me they sound a little rolled off in the highs, very neutral in the mids, a little bit of a bump in the lows, and then a quick roll-off in the sub bass. So I think I need to compare them directly and let my ears adjust.

Sennheiser HD 6xx response:


Genelec 8010 response:

I'm really liking these monitors as I adjust to them. The size is very compact, the sound is very good. They are picky about placement...on the desk there is a boost in the low end and even adjusting the dip switches, I don't like the sound overall. It sounds a little dark and stuffy. But getting them up a little bit helps clear things up.

One thing that bugs me is that I can't find stands for them that are reasonably priced. The factory stands are about $50 each in Europe, but they are $100 each in the US as special orders. Regular studio monitor stands are WAY too big for these speakers, and even most of the smaller desktop speaker stands are either too big or awkwardly sized.

So for now I actually have them on a pair of yoga blocks, which kind of works. They are a really dense foam which probably helps sonically isolate them from the desk, and gets them off the desk a few inches.

Part of me is thinking about jumping up to the 8020's, but most of the Internet chatter is either about 8010's or 8030's. I could go a little larger in size but if it's not a big jump sonically then not sure there's much point.
Picked up the 8020's and they are definitely an improvement! They are a little more open sounding and less boxy as I was hoping, and the low end doesn't sound quite as choked. The 8010's seemed to have a bit of a boost in the bass right before falling off a cliff, so it made them sound a little boxy and warm. These don't have the bass bump and they extend a good 15-20 Hz lower. Also, they have twice the power in the amps, same as the bigger 8030, so they have a little cleaner playback.

I need to spend some time playing guitar through them, but a quick play with the Fractal FM3 on a clean Twin and it was impressive. Closest experience to playing through a combo amp in the room that I've had yet. There was actually enough low end that I had to go in and add a low cut of 60 Hz to keep the bass but remove the resonance in the low end.

That said they are not pumping out a lot of sub bass. They are very clean and clear but barely match the JBL 5" monitors. And they likely won't touch any 6.5-8" monitor either. For me that shouldn't really be an issue but at some point I may want to add a subwoofer to the setup.

In terms of size they are about as big as I'd want to go on a desk. The 8010's were tiny, like little computer speakers. The 8020's are bigger and heavier, but still noticeably smaller than the old JBL 305's.

The build quality is identical on both, a heavy cast aluminum enclosure with grilles covering the woofer and tweeter. The auto on/off has been working great on the 8010 and should be good on the 8020 as well. Lots of options to tweak the bass and treble too, but in stock form they seem quite good.

Happy with the decision to continue with the splurge. The 8010's were an improvement in some ways but not head and shoulders better than the cheap monitors I had. The 8020's feel like a full improvement worth the extra few hundred dollars.

Here's some graphs.



8020 (well this is an 8320 but the same thing more or less):

I'm in the process of of selling my Alesis 5 inch studio monitors going with Presonus Eris EXT 5 and Eris Sub
For recording and Mixing

GAS :)

This whole thing started when I had $60 in GC bucks and was looking at the Presonus Eris 4.5 or whatever they were. The 5's were better on paper but a little too big for my desk. But I was looking at the KRK Rokit 5's, the Adam T5V's, Yamaha HS5's, and others.

Then I realized I've gone through way too any cheap speakers over the last five years:
  • Klipsch 2.1 computer speakers were all treble and bass
  • Mackie CR3 were too boxy and small sounding
  • M-Audio BX5's didn't do anything for me
  • JBL 305's were good but too hyped in the lows and highs
  • iLoud Micros sounded strained and unnatural
  • Bose Companion speakers were too muddy
Realized that I've tried a bunch of cheap speakers in the $200-300 range, and I shouldn't mess around with another set of cheap speakers. The Genelec 8010's were a jump in price up to about $700, and the 8020's were another jump up to $1000. But buy once, cry once right?

I think if money and size were no object, I'd really like a pair of the Adam A7X's as they are so well regarded. But that's like $1500+ for a set of speakers and they're over a foot tall and a foot deep. That would be half my desk. And from experience with the M-Audio BX8's a long time ago, I know that you need a big room with some treatment and have to be fussy about placement. Just putting those on a desk is a recipe for disaster.

Looked at the Adam A4V's too, replacement for the A3X, was very tempted as those also hit the $1000 price point. But compared to the Genelec 8020, the Adam's weren't quite as flat and the Genelec's had nearly as much low end range. Plus they are smaller and much better for use on a desk.

Here's a comparison of sizes:

Adam A7X: 13 x 8 x 11
Yamaha HS7: 13 x 8 x 11
JBL 305: 12 x 7 x 9
Genelec 8030: 12 x 7 x 7
Adam A4V: 10 x 6 x 9
Genelec 8020: 9 x 6 x 6
Presonus Eris 3.5: 8 x 6 x 6
Genelec 8010: 8 x 5 x 5
iLoud Micro: 7 x 4 x 5

So if the 5" and bigger monitors are too big, and the little bitty monitors are too small, the Genelec 8020's are about right. They aren't the little super cute speakers but they don't draw nearly as much attention as the big ones.

I've heard good things about using the Presonus subwoofer with the Genelecs too, so I may go down that route. I don't want to spend $1000+ on the Genelec one. I don't need a sub, but for $200 it may be worth trying.
YEs the Genelec are awesome but unfortunately out of my price range , and well im no pro or anything i record just for my own pleasure
what i do like about the Eris is they do offer a good price performance value as do the KRK's
and I like the high and mid controls on the Eris


The other reason im going to be upgrading is that i have a Corsair 2.1 audio system in which the controller has crapped out so ill be getting a source/monitor Selector and use the Monitors and the sub for both Music playback and then for DAW mixing
ill be eliminating some cluster as well like the 2.1 Satellites and the larger Subwoofer box

Current Set Up Close up 2022.jpg