Digidesign RM1 and RM2 Powered Monitor Speakers
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Part of Digidesign's new Reference Monitor Series (RMS) and jointly developed with PMC (the Professional Monitor Company), the new Digidesign loudspeakers are bi-amplified, professional-grade studio reference monitors. Both two-way systems, the RM1 has a 5.5-inch woofer while the RM2 comes with a 6.7-inch unit. Both use the same 1-inch soft dome, ferrofluid-cooled HF driver. To extend the bass response that belies their physical size, both speakers use PMC's Advanced Transmission Line. The cabinets have a sophisticatedly designed labyrinth of folded channels behind the woofer to increase the available depth and therefore the acoustical characteristics.
Truly a modern speaker, the RM1 and 2 accept either analog or AES/EBU digital (via separate XLR connectors) audio signals up to 96kHz sample rates. If you use the stereo digital connection, you'd connect the opposite speaker with just a standard Ethernet Cat-5 cable and then designate which speaker is left or right using a rear panel switch. (Cool!) There is a 48-bit, fixed-point, DSP engine that handles the monitors' complex frequency crossover, speaker positioning EQ settings, trim level, and bass port Emulation--a way to emulate the sound of a loudspeaker with a reflex bass port.
A beefy, linear power supply runs two, analog-controlled, 92% efficient Class-D audio amplifiers--one for each driver in these monitors. The RM2 uses 50-watts for the tweeter and 100-watts for the woofer while the RM1 requires only 80-watts for the woofer.
I tested a pair of RM2s for a couple of weeks and found them excellent. I connected them using the analog input and preferred the bass port emulation on. I was surprised by the amount of bottom for a nearly 7-inch woofer but I became more interested in the wonderful nuance and super detail of the mid and high frequency areas. I use four sets of speakers (plus headphones) when working on mixes in my Tones4$ Studio and the RM2s prove to beat them all at judging the very important mid-range. The pan positioning of tracks was extremely defined and low level ambient material (reverbs and delays) was easy to hear and accurately judge. In short, the RM2 does everything I want a monitor speaker of its size to do: give me a true appraisal of my mix perspectives; both equalization frequency choices and amount and therefore overall spectral balance; and finally, easily convey the amount of dynamic range processing of individual tracks and the entire mix.
An excellent small studio monitor speaker and a big winner for me, the RM1 sells for $1,249 each while the RM2 sells for $1,749 each. More at www.digidesign.com
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