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2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

Anything about hardware musical instruments.

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Spiritos
KVRian
 
616 posts since 24 Mar, 2013, from Amsterdam

Postby Spiritos; Thu Feb 20, 2014 6:49 am 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

Hi,

Today I finally bought some monitors -the new Tannoy 502's. I was doubting between these and a few others in the same pricerange (Tannoy 601/Rokit RP G3/Yamaha HS-5/Alesis MKII/Mackie MR5 MK3) but was absolutely blown away by the crisp sound of the Tannoys so a little cheer for the british empire here :party:

Unfortunately the store didn't have any cables so I want to order some online today but I'm kinda lost:

I have an Edirol UA-25 interface with 2 balanced XLR and phono output. The XLR output is connected to my hifi-speakers for listening to music in my living room so I only have the phono outputs available. The Tannoys only have balanced XLR, 20 kOhm and unbalanced 1/4” Jack, 10 kOhm so I think I need a 1/4" Jack (Edirol) to XLR (Tannoy) cable.

First question is: will this cable have the same (balanced) quality as a XLR to XLR cable? I think I need this one: http://www.bax-shop.nl/speakerkabels/pr ... tails.html

Can anyone confirm this is the right cable for me?

Second question: Due to ergonomics I want to buy 2 wallbrackets to position my monitors. The Tannoys don't have a 35mm adapter at the bottom (it's padded) so I'm thinking I need to drill holes in the monitor when I buy this bracket: http://www.bax-shop.nl/luidspreker-beug ... tails.html

As I've never done this before and don't have a clue of all the mechanical elements withinin the Tannoys, how do I know where to drill holes?

Thanks in advance!

(EDIT: Audio interface has RCA -no XLR output)
Last edited by Spiritos on Thu Feb 20, 2014 8:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
Win7 64x/Sonar X3/Live 9/Steinberg UR44/Roland HP 235/Edirol PCR-800/Evolution MK-36 1C/Eastman AC222/Washburn D12/Challenge Les Paul/Behringer BCF2000 & BCR2000/Korg Nanopad 2/Focusrite VRM Box/AT 2020/2xB5/E825s/Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro 250/Tannoy 502
BertKoor
KVRAF
 
8302 posts since 8 Mar, 2005, from Utrecht, Holland

Postby BertKoor; Thu Feb 20, 2014 7:26 am Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

The XLR output is connected to my hifi-speakers for listening to music in my living room so I only have the phono outputs available.
Can't you swap that?

I'd advice to use either XLR-XLR (totally balanced) or RCA-1/4" (unbalanced.) For the second option you could use any simple RCA-RCA cable (common in home hifi) plus a pair of RCA-1/4" adapters like these, or special cables (which are rather hard to find and more expensive.) I can guarantee you those RCA-1/4" adapters do not affect the audio quality at all.

To directly answer your questions, the "jack mono male - XLR female" cable is (with a mono plug) by definition unbalanced. There is a difference between balanced and unbalanced, but in a home studio you're not likely to be able to measure that, let alone ever notice it. This cable is in the category "Speaker cable" and those are usually unshielded. That's a definite nono! What you need is generic audio patch cables (line or mic, that's the same cable.) True speaker cables must carry about 100W. You can use regular power cable for that, and both XLR and 1/4" jacks are used for e.g. guitar speaker cabinets. But for active monitors you use regular (shielded) line cables, which only carry about 1 Volt.

For the wall brackets you'd have to study the construction of the speakers. Is the back plate metal, wood or plastic? Best remove the back (and thus void all warranty) before drilling any holes, so you can see where it goes. And put rings in it to spread the force. Maybe better get two simple small bookshelfs to put them on...
We are the KVR collective. Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated. Image
My MusicCalc is back online!!
lfm
KVRAF
 
2813 posts since 22 Jan, 2005, from Sweden

Postby lfm; Thu Feb 20, 2014 7:27 am Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

The cable you selected is mono unbalanced 1/4" - so balanced advantages are lost.

There are such cables that end in a stereo plug and are balanced and give the same quality as xlr balanced. This if audio interface !/4" out is balanced to start with - check that out in manual and specs.

About monitor wallbrackets - maybe I would look for monitor floor stands instead if that would work in your case. Speakers close to the wall are one thing to consider regarding overly boost of lows etc - and if also attached to wall, even worse.
Spiritos
KVRian
 
616 posts since 24 Mar, 2013, from Amsterdam

Postby Spiritos; Thu Feb 20, 2014 8:15 am Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

BertKoor wrote:
The XLR output is connected to my hifi-speakers for listening to music in my living room so I only have the phono outputs available.
Can't you swap that?


I was thinking maybe I should. Then again I would still have the same 'problem' only then with my regular speakers.

BertKoor wrote: I'd advice to use either XLR-XLR (totally balanced) or RCA-1/4" (unbalanced.) For the second option you could use any simple RCA-RCA cable (common in home hifi) plus a pair of RCA-1/4" adapters like these, or special cables (which are rather hard to find and more expensive.) I can guarantee you those RCA-1/4" adapters do not affect the audio quality at all.


I see in my enthusiasm I made a mental typo as I don't have XLR outputs on my interface but indeed RCA. So given that RCA is by definition unbalanced -and if I would opt for a balanced signal I would have to choose the phono/TRS/Jack output to XLR right?

(The phono/jack/TRS output on my interface is balanced btw.)

So honestly I know little to nothing about the context of balanced vs. unbalanced but you say for a home studio it's 100% not a problem to choose an unbalanced signal?
I don't know if it's an issue and/or related but the Tannoy's powerline isn't earthed either. In standby the monitors already have quite an audible 'hiss'.. This has no influence on an unbalanced signal?

So given the specs, what would be the 'optimal' choice for cabling both my speakers as my monitors?

Btw. Thanks for the already comprehensive response!

lfm wrote:About monitor wallbrackets - maybe I would look for monitor floor stands instead if that would work in your case. Speakers close to the wall are one thing to consider regarding overly boost of lows etc - and if also attached to wall, even worse.


I know it's not optimal but alas it's my situation. I did however take this in consideration when choosing the Tannoys as they have front ported bass.

I must say I'd prefer wallbrackets due to aesthetics/ergonomics so I've also contacted Tannoy about a blueprint or so from the inside, but from a audio POV would some of the sound go through the wall with brackets and you say thus a regular stand is preferable?
Win7 64x/Sonar X3/Live 9/Steinberg UR44/Roland HP 235/Edirol PCR-800/Evolution MK-36 1C/Eastman AC222/Washburn D12/Challenge Les Paul/Behringer BCF2000 & BCR2000/Korg Nanopad 2/Focusrite VRM Box/AT 2020/2xB5/E825s/Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro 250/Tannoy 502
BertKoor
KVRAF
 
8302 posts since 8 Mar, 2005, from Utrecht, Holland

Postby BertKoor; Thu Feb 20, 2014 1:00 pm Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

I try to avoid the term 'phono' because it can mean both RCA and TRS (1/4" jack)

You're right, the interface has balanced outputs on TRS and unbalanced on RCA.
Assuming your lead to the hifi is using the RCA out, you can use balanced TRS to connect to the XLR inputs of the monitors. Suggested cable:
http://www.bax-shop.nl/xlr-jack/procab- ... tails.html

Balanced cables can be benefitial on long connections. And if you have a ground loop, you can "lift ground". The hiss you hear is normal, nothing to do with the cables. Unplug audio input, and it will still hiss. Turn down their volume, keep volume on the interface high.

Usually it's not a good idea to bolt speakers to the wall. Vibrations will go through everywhere. Thats why i adviced using a shelf.
We are the KVR collective. Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated. Image
My MusicCalc is back online!!
Shy
KVRAF
 
4968 posts since 26 Jun, 2004

Postby Shy; Thu Feb 20, 2014 1:06 pm Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

BertKoor wrote:I try to avoid the term 'phono' because it can mean both RCA and TRS (1/4" jack)

Note that unbalanced 1/4" is "TS", balanced is "TRS".

And yep, if you don't have XLR outputs, simply use XLR to TRS cables. And make sure the XLR connector is the right type (male, not female).
"Music is spiritual. The music business is not." - Claudio Monteverdi
Spiritos
KVRian
 
616 posts since 24 Mar, 2013, from Amsterdam

Postby Spiritos; Thu Feb 20, 2014 2:28 pm Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

BertKoor wrote:I try to avoid the term 'phono' because it can mean both RCA and TRS (1/4" jack)

You're right, the interface has balanced outputs on TRS and unbalanced on RCA.
Assuming your lead to the hifi is using the RCA out, you can use balanced TRS to connect to the XLR inputs of the monitors. Suggested cable:
http://www.bax-shop.nl/xlr-jack/procab- ... tails.html


Thank you so much for explaining and the link! I am learning as we speak that's why I typed phono/jack/TRS to print in my memory it's the same thing (well, at least the manual of my interface read 'phono') but I now understand the confusion.

BertKoor wrote:Balanced cables can be benefitial on long connections. And if you have a ground loop, you can "lift ground". The hiss you hear is normal, nothing to do with the cables. Unplug audio input, and it will still hiss. Turn down their volume, keep on the interface high.


Ok. Can you elaborate or provide a link regarding "ground loop" and "lift ground"?
Should I do something or did you mean 'if my monitors were grounded..'?

BertKoor wrote:Usually it's not a good idea to bolt speakers to the wall. Vibrations will go through everywhere. Thats why i adviced using a shelf.


I received word from Tannoy their policy states screwing voids warranty and thus they won't recommend a bracket model nor provide details about the design so I'll probably opt for a bracket with a shelf and no screws. Would you say this is as solid an option as fixed stands?
Win7 64x/Sonar X3/Live 9/Steinberg UR44/Roland HP 235/Edirol PCR-800/Evolution MK-36 1C/Eastman AC222/Washburn D12/Challenge Les Paul/Behringer BCF2000 & BCR2000/Korg Nanopad 2/Focusrite VRM Box/AT 2020/2xB5/E825s/Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro 250/Tannoy 502
BertKoor
KVRAF
 
8302 posts since 8 Mar, 2005, from Utrecht, Holland

Postby BertKoor; Fri Feb 21, 2014 1:00 am Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

Spiritos wrote:Should I do something or did you mean 'if my monitors were grounded..'?
As long as you don't hear any 50Hz hum, don't worry about ground loops.
We are the KVR collective. Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated. Image
My MusicCalc is back online!!
Spiritos
KVRian
 
616 posts since 24 Mar, 2013, from Amsterdam

Postby Spiritos; Fri Aug 08, 2014 12:37 am Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

UPDATE FYI: As it turns out Tannoy 'revealed' the first batch of the 502's can have more static noise than intended. In other words, a production error. Support can check your serialnumber. The corrected series start from 808174 onwards. If you (like me) have an earlier version you can exchange them at your local store for free.
Win7 64x/Sonar X3/Live 9/Steinberg UR44/Roland HP 235/Edirol PCR-800/Evolution MK-36 1C/Eastman AC222/Washburn D12/Challenge Les Paul/Behringer BCF2000 & BCR2000/Korg Nanopad 2/Focusrite VRM Box/AT 2020/2xB5/E825s/Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro 250/Tannoy 502
Spiritos
KVRian
 
616 posts since 24 Mar, 2013, from Amsterdam

Postby Spiritos; Tue Sep 16, 2014 12:45 am Re: 2 noob questions about new Tannoy 502 monitors

Spiritos wrote:UPDATE FYI: As it turns out Tannoy 'revealed' the first batch of the 502's can have more static noise than intended. In other words, a production error. Support can check your serialnumber. The corrected series start from 808174 onwards. If you (like me) have an earlier version you can exchange them at your local store for free.


UPDATE: Have the new set hooked up. Hiss is significantly less than before. It appears a printboard needs some adjustment so they fixed my 'old' set but gave me new ones anyway.
Win7 64x/Sonar X3/Live 9/Steinberg UR44/Roland HP 235/Edirol PCR-800/Evolution MK-36 1C/Eastman AC222/Washburn D12/Challenge Les Paul/Behringer BCF2000 & BCR2000/Korg Nanopad 2/Focusrite VRM Box/AT 2020/2xB5/E825s/Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro 250/Tannoy 502

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