Monitor speakers , also called shelf speakers, are more compact in design than floor or column speakers , in order to achieve greater and better use of space.
They are especially recommended for small rooms and for domestic use, they can be used for both hifi 2.0 or 2.1 configurations, while in home cinema systems they usually act as the main pair of front speakers. Monitor speakers are also used in professional music production or sound editing environments , for tasks such as sound recording, mixing, and mastering. Although its enclosure is more contained in size, the internal configuration of the monitor speakers is usually two-way with a unit dedicated to the high frequencies -tweeter-, and another for the midrange and bass -woofer-. Sometimes they add other components such as bass reflex to further emphasize the bass, or the so-called mid-woofer or midrange cabinet, to give prominence to the midrange. Thus, monitor-type speakers more than meet the expectations of those looking to design a true hifi system or upgrade their audio equipment. Our sound specialists advise you to choose those bookshelf speakers present in our catalogue.
Within the group of monitor-type speakers, we find two large groups that are divided according to the type of connection: active monitors and passive monitors . In a third group we could classify professional monitors, which have specific characteristics.
Notwithstanding the differences between assets and liabilities, they are the following:
- Active speakers : active speakers are those that have an amplifier inside , and therefore do not need external electronics to work. Another of the big differences with respect to passive monitors is the integration of a wide range of connections whose objective is to connect with the most used home devices such as the smartphone, turntable , CD player, PC or TV through digital connections. , Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. In the most current models, we can configure all the functions of our active speakers through control applications that allow us to equalize the sound, use streaming services or configure the different audio modes, as long as they are available.
- Passive monitor speakers : passive monitor speakers need external electronics to work , and are designed to be part of so-called stereo systems or as one more element of the home theater system. They are usually combined with an integrated amplifier , a device responsible for providing the amplification necessary for our passive monitors to sound. Together with the integrated amplifier, we can complete the HiFi set with other additional devices such as a network audio player , a power stage or an AVR receiver if we talk about home cinema.
To choose the best monitor speakers , we recommend that you follow a series of tips that will allow you to get the most out of your hi-fi system.
- Location on supports or columns : despite the fact that these types of speakers are designed to be placed on furniture or shelves -hence the name "shelf"-, it is best to place them on speaker supports or columns, thus avoiding possible resonances between the speaker and the furniture. In fact, most monitor speakers have compatible stands to facilitate placement in the room and a better height adjustment, placing the tweeter at ear level as the norm says. Thus, in addition to combining style and functionality, they achieve a height similar to floor-standing speakers and a first-class sound experience.
- Intended for small and medium-sized rooms : due to their compact nature, hifi shelf speakers are mounted in small and medium-sized rooms because the sound transmission is more directional. It is recommended that the listening point does not exceed three meters away in order to obtain a good SPL -sound pressure level- avoiding annoying resonances and vibrations during the listening process. If you are thinking of designing your HiFi equipment, do not hesitate to contact our hifi specialists .
- Add subwoofer : to get the best bass transmission and accompany our monitor speakers, it is interesting to add an external subwoofer that emphasizes the punch of low frequencies and obtain a full range or full range system to free the bass from the load own monitor and achieve an experience similar to that offered by column speakers. Although the subwoofer is a very interesting additional complement, it is essential to adjust it and place it in the correct place in the room, so as not to lose the sound nuances that, together with the monitors, offer us.
- Integrated amplifier for your speakers : the choice of the integrated amplifier is very important to get the most out of the sound reproduced by our bookshelf speakers. According to our specialists and as is the case with headphones , the ideal is to allocate a balanced budget for the speaker-amplifier duo, with the speakers being the key part of the system defining the sound profile, and the integrated amplifier the necessary complement to obtain the better results, as long as we analyze and understand their technical specifications, since, not because they are more compact speakers, they necessarily require less power.
The best monitor speakers are in Zococity.es. With active or passive technology, in our catalog you will find the speakers that best suit you, depending on their use, design, technical specifications and, ultimately, the needs of each user.
Some of the best-selling bookshelf hifi speakers from brands such as KEF , Dali or Edifier recommended by our specialists are these:
- Edifier P17 : despite the fact that Edifier 's specialization as a firm comes with its wide range of active speakers, the Edifier P17 takes the best of the brand and bets on the design of one of the best pairs of passive monitors for little more than €100. Its bookshelf design houses high-performance drivers with a silk dome tweeter and a 4” woofer for deep, nuanced sound reproduction. In addition, we find a bass reflex port to add forcefulness to the low frequencies. Another of the points in favor of the P17 is its multiple placement options, whether on a shelf, desk or walls, thanks to its included supports.
- Dali Spektor 1 : The Dali Spektor 1 are one of the most acclaimed models of the Danish brand, based on a wood fiber woofer structure and soft dome tweeter. The result: a defined sonic response . Their compact dimensions allow these speakers to function as a stereo set or as a front, rear or side piece of a home cinema. The components of the Spektor 1 minimize resonances , while in combination with a good stereo amplifier or AV receiver, they take full advantage and have been designed according to acoustic and electro-acoustic principles for an ultra-authentic sound.
- KEF Q350 : Uni-Q driver technology developed by KEF, is present inside the KEF Q350, passive monitor speakers with precise sound adjustment and detailed response at all frequencies, through three-dimensional sound . Its EISA award for best system is no coincidence, since both its Uni-Q structure and its exclusive design make the Q350 the ideal alternative for those who seek the best.
- Edifier S3000 PRO : The Edifier S3000 PRO is the flagship of Edifier's active range, with a classic design but with advanced technologies that place it as a "top" option to complete your active stereo system. Initially, KLEERNET technology allows wireless interconnection of the left and right channels without loss, and capable of using two frequency bands of 5.8G and 5.2G. In its internal part, a DAC PCM 5242 chip and an xCore multi-core XMOS processor stand out, for crystal clear sound transmission, which acquires its full potential through its wide assortment of connections, among which Bluetooth 5.0 with aptX HD stands out. and digital and analog connections to use the speakers with TV, PC, turntables, smartphones, and other home devices. Maintaining the essence of Edifier's S line, these S3000 PRO are presented as a classic and temperamental set in design and sound.