M-Audio's aim for the BX5 D2 was to make a studio monitor that's compact but doesn't compromise on sound. Have they succeeded?
The rear panel houses the input jack and XLR sockets, as well as the input gain control.
Despite today's crowded marketplace, new nearfield monitors just seem to keep on coming, this latest model from M-Audio being aimed at the smaller project studio, where compact desktop speakers are needed. Each cabinet measures 252 x 176 x 195mm (HxWxD), weighs in at 5kg, and is attractively finished in satin-black vinyl laminate. The reassuringly solid cabinets have rounded corners, for reduced edge diffraction, and a neat touch is a recessed power LED on the front of each speaker. These show at their brightest when you're in the correct listening position and the speakers are angled properly.
As with the majority of nearfield compact speakers, the cabinets are ported to make the most of the low end. On these, the flared port is on the rear panel, to avoid port noise being directed towards the listening position. Overall, these look like solidly engineered little speakers that follow established two-way, active, ported principles.
The BX5 D2 is a bi-amplified design, with two Class-A/B amplifiers providing a total of 70 Watts of power. A 40W amplifier feeds a five-inch low-frequency/mid-range driver, and the one-inch, silk-dome tweeter has its own 30W amp (the crossover frequency is set at 3kHz). Both drivers are recessed flush with the sculpted front baffle, and the edge of the woofer opening is flared to provide a smooth transition from the roll surround to the baffle. The woofer has a curved, conical cone, fabricated from woven Kevlar and supported in a rubber surround. The literature states that the high-temperature voice-coil design reduces power compression effects, which otherwise reduce efficiency when the speakers get hot through heavy use.
Internal control circuitry helps to protect the speakers from damage: a subsonic filter keeps out the extreme low frequencies that might otherwise stress the speakers unnecessarily, while RF filtering keeps out frequencies above the audio range. The circuitry also avoids thumps during power up or down, and there's amplifier protection against overheating or over-current.
The speakers are equipped with separate jack and balanced XLR inputs, and the jack may be used with either unbalanced or balanced signals. A volume pot sets input gain, but there are no EQ switches or other frequency adjustments. Power comes in on the usual IEC socket, and there's a power switch on the rear panel, along with a voltage selector for 115/230V operation. There's no external heat sink — the metal rear panel provides the only heat‑dissipation path.
The quoted frequency response for these speakers is 53Hz to 22kHz, though no tolerance figures are given. There's also no maximum SPL quoted.call-07