Last Updated on April 2, 2021.
I’ve had so many people ask me over the years if they could use studio monitors for listening to music, gaming, DJing, even for parties (please don’t use them for that), which is why I decided to write all of these answers into a single post.
So, without any further ado, let’s get started!
Oh, and I will also tell you what monitors you should get (affordable ones, of course).
Can Studio Monitors be used as PA Speakers?
PA Speakers are designed to be loud, which is why they are used in live events. Studio monitors, on the other hand, are designed to deliver the highest audio quality possible at relatively low volume levels and the maximum volume they are able to achieve is nowhere near that of a PA system.
This is because studio monitors were designed with accuracy in mind, since mixing engineers need to be able to hear every single detail. Not only that, but they are also designed to sound as flat as possible, which means that they tend not to alter the signal as much by enhancing the sound with EQ, like other systems would.
Essentially, studio monitors need to be able to deliver the highest quality signal without altering anything to the audio engineer, otherwise how can they be sure that the changes they are making to the song are accurate?
Can you use Studio Monitors as HiFi speakers?
HiFi speakers accentuate certain frequency ranges which makes them sound better to most people, while Studio monitors are designed to sound flat, which means that they don’t enhance the audio as much. Listening to music on studio monitors will give you a better representation of how the song was intended to sound but it may take some time getting used to.
I personally listen to music on my studio speakers since I absolutely love the way they sound, and the same goes for Studio headphones, since I don’t like the huge bass boost that most commercial headphones have.
In fact, and this is just my opinion, I think listening to music on studio monitors is much more pleasing than listening through a system that EQ’s the living hell out of your music, and the great thing is that if you want to add more bass, for example, you can do that through EQ.
Can you use studio monitors to listen to music?
Since studio monitors are designed to sound flat to give you as accurate a representation of the music as possible, they are actually great for listening to music, especially once you get used to them since you will be able to hear the songs as the artist actually intended them to be heard with no boosted frequencies (usually in the low end).
I got used to how my studio monitors sound, and to be honest, I love it! I just mentioned that I used to own a pretty high-quality HiFi system and it really did sound great, but once you get used to the improvement in audio quality that studio monitors provide, even if they don’t make the songs sound “better” by boosting specific frequency ranges, you’ll love it.
Can you use Studio Monitors for parties?
Studio monitors are not designed to play music at loud volumes, which means that not only won’t they be able to reach the volumes required for a party, but they might even get damaged if you push them too hard. In this case, I’d recommend a PA system of regular HiFi speakers.
To be honest, I wouldn’t recommend using your expensive studio monitors for a party. I mean, even pseudo budget ones sell for around $400 a pair. Would you really be willing to risk damaging them? I wouldn’t.
It’s far more affordable to rent, or even buy, a full PA system and be done with it. I mean, why would you even want people at a party to be able to listen to music in super high definition? Just give them something loud and they’ll be happy.
Can you use Studio Monitors for a home theater?
Studio monitors are great alternatives to home theater speakers and they do, in fact, sound much better since they provide a much more accurate representation of how the audio is supposed to sound. However, the reason studio monitors aren’t used as often in home theater setups is because of their price tag, which is much higher than that of traditional home theater speakers.
Like I previously mentioned, Studio Monitors are not only designed to sound flat as not to alter the audio that the producer is hearing so that they can make better decisions while mixing, but they are also designed to reproduce audio with as much clarity and detail as possible.
If you’re watching a movie, then I think that if you want to get the best audio experience possible, you should focus on using a sound system that provides you with the best sound quality possible, which, more often than not, would be studio monitors/speakers.
Can you use Studio Monitors for DJing?
The ideal speakers to use while DJing at home or in a studio are studio monitors because they are capable of reproducing sounds accurately and without altering the signal, such as boosting the low and high end.
If you’re practicing and creating your mixes in your home studio, then definitely use studio monitors if you can afford them. You don’t even need to get top of the shelf ones since you can get fairly good-sounding monitors for about $300 for the pair.
Now, I wouldn’t use studio monitors for DJing live since they aren’t capable of reproducing music at the required volume, plus they could get damaged.
Can you use Studio Monitors for Gaming?
There is no reason not to use studio monitors for gaming, in fact, since they are capable of reproducing sound more accurately than other kinds of sound systems, you should be able to hear all the detail and different nuances from your game much better.
I do game from time to time, and since I have studio monitors, I use those and I truly love it!
However, what’s even better is using high-quality headphones since the make the whole experience a lot more immersive, so in this particular case, I’d recommend looking into some of those.
Best Affordable Home Studio Monitors
There are loads of cheap studio monitors around, like the Presonus Eris e3.5 or Mackie CR3-XBT, but I would advise against purchasing something that cheap since you’ll probably be disappointed with the overall sound quality.
If you want to get monitors that you won’t need to upgrade later on because they sound absolutely terrible, I’d recommend going with the ones that aren’t as dirt cheap, otherwise you will probably end up spending a whole lot more on better monitors later on, wasting money in the process.
Here are my two top recommendations, and keep in mind that these are the affordable ones I’d recommend, not top of the line since those will cost you thousands.
These small studio monitors have a proprietary tweeter that sounds way better than anything I’ve ever heard before in this price range. The higher end just comes across super clear, which is great for mixing, DJing, listening to music, etc.
It’s not the flattest-sounding set of monitors out there, they do sound great!
Find out more about the Adam T5V here:
These are the best bang for your buck monitors I can think of; They have a seriously flat frequency response (no monitor is ever 100% flat, but you get the picture), and at this price point they just can’t be beat.
When compared to the Adam T5V, I think that the Kali LP6 are better all around.
Find out more about the Kali LP-6 here.
Studio monitors will give you an overall better experience when compared to other types of sound systems. However, if you’re used to listening to music with an overexaggerated bass boost, then you might feel as if studio monitors sounded a little wimpy, but you’ll need to get used to it and once you do, going back to your old system will absolutely suck!
I can’t recommend studio monitors enough. I use them every day and love it!
But like I said, don’t just buy the cheapest ones you can find, since those will sound absolutely terrible.
I hope this information was useful!
Have a wonderful day!