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Genelec M040

Two Way Active Studio Monitor

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The Best Studio Monitors

Genelec M040

  • Don Makoviney
  • Last Updated: August 25, 2015

We tested 5 different pairs of mid-to-high end studio monitors at a local production studio, and the Genelec M040 was the clear winner. Critics and users alike agree the Genelec M040 gets you more monitor for your buck, hands down, more than most other models in this price range. If you want a pair of reliable monitors that would impress the pros, at a fraction of the cost the Genelec M040 is the one(s) to get.


Who should buy these monitors?

These are mid to high end active studio monitors. These are for the audio producer that has decided they want to get serious about audio production, and want home studio reference monitors which will give you a professional reference.

These are as good as it gets. Sound on Sound magazine remarked:

For its intended use as a mid/high-end monitor for small project and home studios, the Genelec M040 seems, to me, to be right on the money. Not only is it an extremely capable studio monitor but it also could do double duty as a hi-fi speaker for those of us who want high levels of accuracy and detail when listening for pleasure.

Bobby Frasier at Mix Magazine agrees in his review:

The M040 bridges the gap between pro monitoring and the hobbyist, with a speaker system that is not only state-of-the-art “green,” but can reproduce, quite accurately, the critical midrange, as well as provide separation of instrumentation throughout the audible spectrum.

If you are looking for a “budget” choice, these are certainly not the pick for you. But if you want professional mixes, these are the best monitors you can buy for under $2000.00. Attack Magazine noted that the compromises made in these active studio monitors are smart and do not adversely affect the sound at all:

Overall, the M040 offers a sensible series of compromises which reduce costs while retaining all of the best characteristics of the Genelec sound. The M040s punch above their weight at this price point. At the time of writing they’ve only been on sale a few months, but expect to see a lot of these in studios over the next few years as more people realise what they have to offer.

But how do they sound?

The reason I recommend these is that a good friend of mine has them. I had never heard of them before, and when I listened to some recent mixes, I was blown away. Interactive Guitar Magazine describes the sound in a similar way:

What do they sound like? The bottom end is clear and full with a nice “bounce” to it (to the point where I actually switched-in the low level EQ cut on the occasion when I really cranked them loud). At any volume level the frequency range has a proper sense of being connected and there is the classic Genelec “forward” sound that makes working with the higher frequencies very precise. If anything I might have liked to be able to tame the highs just a little bit purely as a matter of personal taste – I feel that way with almost all monitors, and the clean and undistorted high end never became tiring to work with. With the monitor levels set flat and an unbalanced input source connected but muted, the only sound I could hear was a very low level hiss up to an inch or so away from the speaker – completely inaudible beyond that. Stereo image was stable and wide enough that I never moved far enough to hear it wander, and I never noticed any reflex port “woofing” nor the bass smearing to the infamous ported-monitor “single note smudge”. Very good!

When you get more sound than expected at this price point, it means the Genelec M040 Studio Monitors are the ones to get.

If price is your main concern.

mackie-cr4-listeningpos
via

 

If you are on a strict budget, and have maybe around $200 or so to spend, I’d suggest the Mackie CR4 4-Inch Creative Pair of Reference Multimedia Monitors. One user remarked, “I have these in my home studio, they are loud enough and very clear. I connected them to a Tascam DP24 with balanced monster studio cables and haven’t looked back. A really good price for a really good product.”

 


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The Best Studio Monitors

Genelec M040

The Best Studio Monitors

Important Specs

Frequency Response 48 Hz - 20 kHz (-3 dB)
Crossover 2.5 kHz
Speaker Bass 6.5" + Treble 1"
Power Bass 80 W + Treble 50 W Class D
Dimensions W x H x D: 9 1/4" x 13 1/4" x 9"
Weight 15.4lb
Connectors 1 Combo XLR and 1/4" analog in plus RCA
more specs

Synopsis:

Critics and users alike agree the Genelec M040 gets you more monitor for your buck, hands down, more than most other models in this price range.

Mackie CR4 4-Inch Creative Pair of Reference Multimedia Monitors

The Under $200 Option

Mackie CR4 4-Inch Creative Pair of Reference Multimedia Monitors

These are quite reliable, have great feedback from users, and a respectable frequency range (70 Hz - 20 kHz). If you are on a strict budget but need to get going quickly, the Mackie CR4s are the ones to get.

- M

Sources

  1. Bob Thomas, Sound On Sound, 20140501
    Genelec M040 Active Monitors
  2. Bobby Frasier, Mix Magazine, 20140801
    Genelec M040 Active Monitors: Entry-Level Speaker for Music Creators
  3. Jon Musgrave, Music Radar, 20131114
    Genelec M Series Monitors
  4. Staff, Attack Magazine, 20131209
    Ten of the Best: Studio Monitors
  5. Staff, iGuitar Magazine, 20150319
    Review: Genelec M040 active monitors
Originally published: March 19th, 2015
  • Willa Porter

    There are so many studio monitors that have been claimed to be the best that it’s so hard to choose. One site says this is the best, another site says it’s another. I have been thinking about getting the Genelec M040 studio speakers but of course there are other ones on my list as well. Right now the one at the top of my list is the Adam A77X studio monitors, mostly because I’ve read more good Adam A77X reviews (like this one http://www.studio-speakers.com/adam-a77x-monitoring-speaker-review/) than other studio speakers. Maybe that’s the wrong way to choose speakers, but if many people like it it should be great, right

Important Specs

Frequency Response 48 Hz - 20 kHz (-3 dB)
Crossover 2.5 kHz
Speaker Bass 6.5" + Treble 1"
Power Bass 80 W + Treble 50 W Class D
Dimensions W x H x D: 9 1/4" x 13 1/4" x 9"
Weight 15.4lb
Connectors 1 Combo XLR and 1/4" analog in plus RCA
more specs



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