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Joined: Dec 2020
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JohnGB7 Offline OP
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Based on advice on this forum, I bought a Kawai MP11SE with a pair of iLoud MTM monitors. Overall the monitors and the piano have been fantastic, but I find that the MTM monitors sound thin on the bottom half of the lowest octave. This is especially noticeable if comparing the audio on decent headphones vs the MTM monitors. On anything above that I can't tell the audio from the headphones apart from the monitors, so they are fantastic there.

To correct this, I think that I need to get a subwoofer, but I have no idea which one(s) work well with the MTM monitors. IK Multimedia have no recommended sub to go with the monitors, so I hope that someone here has a suggestion.

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I have mtms, i see no need for a sub, but apparently presonus do an affordable one, sub 8 or something.

Mtms have plenty of bass at 40hz, don't see why you'd need lower than that, pointless for piano.

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The sound is thin in the lowest octave as the iLoud MTM’s are indeed unable to reproduce those deep bass notes in the 27 to 45 Hz range. Most studio monitors can’t unless you get some really big ones, but at the same time, most people seldom play pieces that involve such low notes. But I can definitely understand your wanting all notes to sound properly.

There is no specific subwoofer brand that one must use with studio monitors, but you want a subwoofer with a very good bass extension to about 20 Hz to make a noticeable difference. Yamaha makes the HS8 which is designed for studio monitors. If you are in States, SVS makes some of the best subwoofers in the market. Although these are used a lot for home theaters, the tech guys at their help desk say their subwoofers play well with studio monitors and remain honest at reference quality. Their Micro 3000 is a good/compact model for small rooms. If you have more space and don’t mind the weight, look instead at the models with dual port cabinets. Most SVS subwoofers have such powerful deep bass that you could even play cathedral organ pieces with no problem whatsoever.

Last edited by Chris Pringle; 11/16/21 02:01 AM.
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I bought a sub, as my speakers go down only to about 80 Hz. And even in that case it was a waste of money, at least if we are talking about acoustic piano. I can only hear the bloody thing if I switch of the speakers, or put my ears against it (one ear, two is difficult). Just some low rumbling in the far distance. Now I can crank up the volume on the sub to be able to hear it, but is does not get better sound wise, just more boomy, maybe one can like it to some extent, but it is not natural.

To know what is natural you can connect your piano to a computer and use any kind of VST loaded into a DAW, and listen with good headphones. You play some base heavy piano, and put in a filter to cut out everything below 80Hz. Next you try to tell the difference in a blind test. I think you will have a hard time doing so. I did that test, still bought a sub, although my sound was perfect, just to double check, and I was right. Shame on me, didn't believe my own scientific test.

But maybe my ears are just very bad.


I think you should be looking at a different frequency range if you want to improve/change sound of the base notes (probably between 80-120 Hz). You can find some guidelines here:

https://producersociety.com/how-to-eq-piano/

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I’ve been thinking for ages about buying iloud mtms. They are pretty good then?

Last edited by Wayne2467; 11/16/21 07:44 AM.
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I have a set of Presonus E5 with sub T10.
While there are a common opinion that there's no need for a subwoofer for piano sound on studio monitors but I can tell that my VSts sound richer when I have the sub switched on.
As the iLoud MTM has XLR input it might work well with the iLoud.
The T10's low pass filter can be set to from 50Hz so it could be good match.
You can try first with 50Hz and if the changeover seems not to be smooth you can increase the low pass to 60Hz etc.
Good luck


[Kawai VPC1 / ES100 - VSTs: VSL 280VC, Garritan CFX, VI Labs Ravenscroft 275 & Pianoteq 7 - Ableton Live Lite - Presonus iOne/iTwo - Tascam US1x2/2x2- Sennheiser HD700/6xx - Presonus E5+T10, iloud micro monitors]
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I also have iLoud MTMs i see no need for a sub.

I own 2 sub woofers, but for piano playing the MTMs are more than enough, so i don‘t use any sub woofer.

But i am playing in a small room.(16m2)


RD 2000 , Yamaha Clavinova CVP, Casio CTX 5000 with some VSTs
Favorites: VSL BI, Noire, Grandeur,Bechstein DG

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Originally Posted by Wayne2467
I’ve been thinking for ages about buying iloud mtms. They are pretty good then?

They are very good for VSTs, i can't fathom needing anything of a higher quality to enjoy the samples through, it's the stereo image that's impressive too, the overall detail is beautiful, there's a very good review on reddit of the ilouds that finally convinced me they're perfect for digital piano/VST, and I'm no audio expert as such, but honestly I've not even calibrated mine yet to the room acoustics and they sound sublime. They put a smile on my face playing garritan CFX through them or ivory 2 ACD, totally flat/uncoloured and reveal the beauty of the VSTs and all that GB of data you have at your disposal, tbh it makes the kawai es920 onboard samples a joke after hearing garritan or ivory through mtms.

I have mine on mic stands, probably the best purchase I've made in decades, they're ideal for large sample pianos, pianoteq also I'd presume.

No more cabinet pianos for me anyway.

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A subwoofer is almost always a good idea.

1) It will increase the frequency range into the sub-bass; even if the piano doesn't haveuch information here, it will help increase the physical impact of the sound.

2) it can help linearize the response in the bass

3) with calibration, it can help minimize the effect of standing waves that cause distracting boominess or nulls at your listening position

4) it will allow your monitors to play loud more cleanly, which even if you don't play that loud may sound better and lead to a better sense of dynamics and transient response.

The key is calibration. There's nothing quite like listening to speakers with properly calibrated bass, and it can help upper frequencies sound better too by minimizing the masking effect that often happens with boomy bass.

That said, not all calibration systems are made the same -- some really calibrate to outdated standards -- and I don't know how good the MTMs system is at this. But definitely worth a try once you have the sub.

There isn't much of a need to be too picky with subs, mostly I'd say get a as reasonably big a size as you can manage; don't waste your money on a sub that isn't going to dig into the 20s. The SVS Sb-1000 is good, as are the monoprice monolith subs. Good luck!

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OK, Just did some extensive testing with my new sub ( I have it 3 days already, its dynavoice 8 sub). I eat my words. The effect is subtle (not going to admit totally now). Compared a digital recording of some of my playing with a recording I made this afternoon through a microphone.

So, no sub it is a little thin, nothing dramatic, but a little thin. 75% volume on the sub is too boomy. But 50% is about spot on to mimic the digital recording. A little more body in the base. So, finally, I will keep it, sorry to mislead you.

But my speakers are Tozzie One, full range, go down to 80 Hz only. Beautiful sound (much better then iLoud Micro monitors, but that is not MTM off course), but lacking some base. So, now I have the perfect setup. Very happy.

Originally Posted by Kepijapa
I bought a sub, as my speakers go down only to about 80 Hz. And even in that case it was a waste of money, at least if we are talking about acoustic piano. I can only hear the bloody thing if I switch of the speakers, or put my ears against it (one ear, two is difficult). Just some low rumbling in the far distance. Now I can crank up the volume on the sub to be able to hear it, but is does not get better sound wise, just more boomy, maybe one can like it to some extent, but it is not natural.

To know what is natural you can connect your piano to a computer and use any kind of VST loaded into a DAW, and listen with good headphones. You play some base heavy piano, and put in a filter to cut out everything below 80Hz. Next you try to tell the difference in a blind test. I think you will have a hard time doing so. I did that test, still bought a sub, although my sound was perfect, just to double check, and I was right. Shame on me, didn't believe my own scientific test.

But maybe my ears are just very bad.


I think you should be looking at a different frequency range if you want to improve/change sound of the base notes (probably between 80-120 Hz). You can find some guidelines here:

https://producersociety.com/how-to-eq-piano/

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a question for the iLoud MTM users:

. . . Have you done the "room calibration" that iLoud supports,

. . . . and does it help the bass response ?


I'd expect that the 3.5" "woofers" are hard-pressed to reach into a piano's lowest octave, but there are two of them (per speaker), and they have 70 watts each driving them:

. . . there might be enough "oomph" for a small room, with substantial bass EQ.

Thanks --


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I have a sub with my pianoteq setup and yes the difference is subtle but when I play an accompaniment track the bass and drum are wonderful.

Last edited by Serge88; 11/16/21 08:49 PM.


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JohnGB7 Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Wayne2467
I’ve been thinking for ages about buying iloud mtms. They are pretty good then?

They are fantastic nearfield monitors, but on the very low end of the base, they are a bit lacking (to my ear).

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JohnGB7 Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Charles Cohen
a question for the iLoud MTM users:

. . . Have you done the "room calibration" that iLoud supports,

. . . . and does it help the bass response ?


I'd expect that the 3.5" "woofers" are hard-pressed to reach into a piano's lowest octave, but there are two of them (per speaker), and they have 70 watts each driving them:

. . . there might be enough "oomph" for a small room, with substantial bass EQ.

Thanks --

I've done the room calibration with the MTM monitors, and overall the sound is great. The problem is that the base isn't low enough, even according to the MTM frequency response graph, and so when on the lowest 4 or 5 keys, there is a noticeable thinning of the sound that isn't there with headphones.

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Only in the lowest 4 or 5 keys? If that's the case, those speakers are amazing for their price and size. I wouldn't add a subwoofer that may alterate the speakers equilibrium. And also, there's not so much music that uses those keys.

Im thinking im getting those mtm. Seems like the perfect piano monitors. Does anyone compared them live against the usual 5 and 8 inches from Yamaha, krk, presonus etc?

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Originally Posted by Ubu
Only in the lowest 4 or 5 keys? If that's the case, those speakers are amazing for their price and size. I wouldn't add a subwoofer that may alterate the speakers equilibrium. And also, there's not so much music that uses those keys.

Im thinking im getting those mtm. Seems like the perfect piano monitors. Does anyone compared them live against the usual 5 and 8 inches from Yamaha, krk, presonus etc?

Iloud mtm v HS8:



There are other videos also on his channel comparing all sorts of monitors against each other.

Apparently the guy who makes these videos, he said the mtm are his favourite speakers out of them all, no, they can't compete with a proper 8 inch in terms of bass response, but overall the sound quality is much higher regardless.

Regarding bass response and room calibration of the mtm using the supplied mic, i found after a calibrating test of one of them, the bass was reduced significantly which i didn't like. If you feel there's not enough bass, just turn off calibration mode on the speakers and put both to 40hz, i can't understand a need for a sub woofer.

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Originally Posted by Ubu
Only in the lowest 4 or 5 keys? If that's the case, those speakers are amazing for their price and size. I wouldn't add a subwoofer that may alterate the speakers equilibrium. And also, there's not so much music that uses those keys.

Im thinking im getting those mtm. Seems like the perfect piano monitors. Does anyone compared them live against the usual 5 and 8 inches from Yamaha, krk, presonus etc?

It is a misunderstanding that subwoofer will hurt a speaker's equilibrium. Really, it should do the opposite!

Originally Posted by Charles Cohen
a question for the iLoud MTM users:

. . . Have you done the "room calibration" that iLoud supports,

. . . . and does it help the bass response ?


I'd expect that the 3.5" "woofers" are hard-pressed to reach into a piano's lowest octave, but there are two of them (per speaker), and they have 70 watts each driving them:

. . . there might be enough "oomph" for a small room, with substantial bass EQ.

Thanks --

Note that dual 3.5-inch woofers is approximately equivalent to a 5-inch woofer in terms of surface area. In any case, the size of the woofer is really not that relevant for speakers with DSP. The devialet phantom reactors have deeper, high quality bass than many full-sized towers I've tested, for example, despite only having dual 4-inch woofers. When DSP is at play to modify the frequency response of a speaker, it basically just comes down to how much you can extend the bass without the distortion becoming an audible issue. Even the smaller and cheaper iLoud MicroMonitors do well to reach into the piano's bottom octave; they just can't get very loud without distorting.


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