Best Budget Studio Monitors For Home Studios [Ultimate List 2020]

Budget Studio Monitors for home studio

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Choosing GOOD budget studio monitors is such a tough task for music producers. Especially when it comes to newbies. Well, don’t worry, in this article, I’ve shared 10 cool studio monitors that fit your budget.

The problem is if you don’t have a good pair of studio monitors you can’t produce industry-standard music track.

As we all know, quality is the key to success in the music production field, we cannot ignore it by choosing a crap.

As an experienced recordist and a mix engineer, I know that a good pair of studio monitors is a very important equipment for a recording professional.

So, today in this article I’m I will introduce you with 10 best studio monitors as per your budget.

Many of you, maybe newbie and don’t want to invest more than $100 at the beginning. Few of you may have more budget so I have divided all the findings into 4 categories,

  • Studio monitors under $100
  • Studio monitors under $200
  • Studio monitors under $300
  • Studio Monitors under $500

So, whatever budget you have, you can find the best ones here in this article.

Well, enough intro…Let’s start.

Budget Studio Monitors Under $100

At first, we will discuss the lowest category monitors. This category is only for beginners who want to learn audio recording as well as do some simple and small projects.

Note: If you are not a beginner, don’t go with any one of them as they can’t be fit as per expectations.

1. PreSonus Eris E3.5

PreSonus Eris E3.5

PreSonus Eris E3.5 is an entry-level studio monitor that is ideal for newbies. If you are a newbie and wanna set up your home studio with low range equipment then this monitor will be the best fit in your studio equipment list.

It is ideal for you if you are not doing a serious mix.

  • This tiny monitor will fit in a small space so it’s quite useful for small home studios.
  • But don’t underestimate it as it has 70-watt RMS power which is higher than the other 5 inches monitors.
  • It is equipped with 5.25″ woven Kevlar driver and 1″ silk dome tweeter which gives you a powerful bass frequency along with crystal clear high frequencies.
  • It has a built-in crossover around 3kHz that gives you good mid-range frequencies.
  • On the backside we get Acoustic Space controls along with MF trims, HF trims, Low Cut controls. Acoustic Space control is used for a semi-acoustic room.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 3.5-inch (89 mm) Kevlar  woofers
Tweeter Size and Material 1-inch (25 mm), silk-dome tweeters
Amp 25W per speaker (not bi-amped)
Cabinet MDF wood with AV shielded for multimedia applications
Frequency Response 80 Hz – 20 kHz
Inputs RCA-Un-balanced, 1/4″ TRS – Balanced, XLR – Balanced
Controller Volume, Mid, High, Low cutoff, Acoustic space Controller
Other variants Eris E4.5, Eris E5, Eris E8, Eris E44, Eris E66

Here is a video review that can help you to go into more detail before purchasing it.

Price – $99.95 plus shipping

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2. Mackie CR3 CR Series 3 Reference Studio Monitor

Mackie CR3

Mackie is a well-known name in the pro audio industry. Generally, Mackie produces analog and digital mixers but they are also active in studio monitor manufacturing.

Mackie CR3 is a low range monitor and it is one of the best choice for entry level home studios. You can consider it as an alternative to Presonus Eris E3.5.

Moreover, the green outline over the tweeters and woofers gives it a professional look.

Well, now let’s have a detail of its features.

  • It is a small monitor and doesn’t take much space so we can place it on our recording table easily.
  • It has a 3-inch woofer and 1-inch tweeter.
  • The good thing is that it has a built-in amplifier which makes it an active monitor.
  • 50-watt RMS power is high enough for a small room studio.
  • I/O cluster includes balanced RCA along with a set of balanced/unbalanced 1/4“ TRS ports.
  • The only demerit is, the amplifier is built inside the master monitor and you have to connect to the slave monitor. This is an annoying situation when you want to use your monitor in a satellite position.

Watch this video review for a better understanding.

Price – $85.49

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3. M-Audio AV32 Studio Monitor

Budget Studio Monitor

M-Audio is known for manufacturing professional recording and live products under budget. Their products deliver high-quality performance and fit in your pocket too.

Do you know how I am telling this with confidence? Because I have used M-audio products for a while. I had M-Audio Fast track Pro USB audio interface for mobile recording and used it with my laptop for mixing on the go. It was able to deliver a great quality mix to my client.

I had M-audio AV32 studio monitors for approx 1 year. The overall performance of this studio monitor is good and it won’t let you down.

The low-frequency response is not much better so you should use a separate woofer for the low frequencies if you want good mixes.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 3″ polypropylene-coated Woofers
Tweeter Size and Material 1″ Ferro Fluid Cooled Silk Dome
Amp 10-Watts RMS Per Channel
Cabinet MDF wood
Frequency Response 80 Hz – 20,000 Hz
Inputs RCA(Back Side), 1/8″ stereo auxiliary(Front Side)
Other variants AV42 (4-Inches woofer)

Watch the review below to get an idea about this budget studio monitor.

Price – $81.88

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4. Samson MediaOne BT3 Active Studio Monitor

budget studio monitor

Samson is a new player in the pro recording field but its products are quite acceptable. Within 3 years, Samson made a good place in the recording equipment market.

Samson is active in manufacturing studio monitors, headphones, and microphones.

Frankly saying Samson products are medium-range products and suitable for home studios only. Samson MediaOne BT3 active studio monitor is the bestselling product though.

You can try it if you want to create a small home studio. The main thing I consider in any studio monitor is the frequency curve. More flat curve delivers more accurate sound.

MediaOne delivers an average quality frequency curve.

Let’s have a look at the features of Samson MediaOne BT3.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 3-inches copolymer woofers
Tweeter Size and Material 1-inch silk dome tweeters
Amp 15 watts per channel RMS
Cabinet MDF wood with AV shielded for multimedia applications
Frequency Response 80 Hz – 27,000 Hz
Inputs RCA(Back Side), 1/8″ stereo auxiliary(Front Side), Bluetooth
Output 1/8″ Phono Headphone Out Front Panel
Other variants BT4 (4-Inches), BT5 (5-Inches)

Price – $99.99

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Budget Studio Monitors Under 200

5. Mackie CR5 BT Studio Monitor: 5-Inches

Mackie CR3

Mackie is a well known pro audio manufacturer and quite popular among music producers. It’s especially known for its wide range of analog and digital mixer boards as well as MIDI controllers. I have already added one studio monitor under $100 above from Mackie.

Mackie CR5 BT Studio Monitor is a lower mid-range monitor. You can easily monitor and mix your audio with these pro studio monitors.

Mackie CR5 BT deliver a good “nearly flat” frequency response curve which is required for a good mix. This monitor also performs well in high volume as the distortion is low.

If you want a monitor that is able to give you the best sound quality under $200 then you should go for this monitor pair.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 5″ polypropylene-coated woofer
Tweeter Size and Material 1″ Ferro Fluid Enhanced Neodymium Silk Dome
Amp 50-Watts RMS
Cabinet MDF wood
Frequency Response 60Hz – 20kHz
Inputs 1/4″ TRS – balanced/unbalanced, RCA – unbalanced, Front Panel Aux – 1/8″ Stereo Phono
Output 1/8″ Headphone out – Front Panel
Other variants CR3 (3″), CR4 (4″), CR4 LTD (4″), CR4 BT (4″)

Price – $178.69

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6. Alesis Elevate 5 MKII

I remember when I have first started my recording studio, Alesis was my first studio monitor. However, I was not much satisfied with Alesis. Today the quality is changed dramatically Though. Now Alesis is giving good competition to its competitors.

Alesis Elevate 5 MKII comes with 5-inch 40 watt woofer and 1-inch silk dome tweeter. The sleek design gives a classic look to this monitor.

But the most important feature of this 5-inch monitor is you can get optimized dispersion and stereo imaging by its elliptical tweeter waveguide.

The only disadvantage of the Alesis Elevate 5 MKII studio monitor is it does not have separate amplification for each side. That means you need to connect both the monitors together to get it worked.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 5″ polypropylene-coated woofer
Tweeter Size and Material 1″ Ferro Fluid Enhanced Neodymium Silk Dome
Amp 80-Watts RMS
Cabinet MDF wood
Frequency Response 60Hz – 20kHz
Inputs 1/4″ TRS – balanced/unbalanced, RCA – unbalanced, Front Panel Aux – 1/8″ Stereo Phono
Output 1/8″ Headphone out – Front Panel

Price: $159.99

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Best Studio Monitors Under 300 USD

7. KRK RP5G4-NA Rokit 5 Powered Studio Monitor -G4

krk rokit 5

KRK is a famous brand in the pro-audio field. KRK manufactures high-end monitors for professional-grade studios. But from the past few years, the concept of home studios became quite popular. So they also entered this market.

Start a professional grade home studio within your budget here.

With the digitization of audio recording, when the whole recording studio revolves around audio interfaces, studio monitors, and computers loaded with professional recording DAWs.

KRK observed the boom in the home recording field and released its budget Rokit series for the home studio owners.

KRK RP5G3-NA delivers just an amazing sound. You would realize the magic of KRK monitors when you mix a record with this pro studio monitor.

  • KRK Rokit 5 G4 is a two-way active studio monitor with 50-watt power on each side, which means you will get overall 100-watt power for a pair.
  • This monitor has an inbuilt bi-amped class A/B amplifier which gives you more headroom with low distortion.
  • The amazingly designed silver dome tweeters provide you extra clarity up to 35kHz.
  • If you are aware of the speaker technology you would know that tweeter covers a wide range of sound frequency in the spectrum so a good quality tweeter is very very important for a good mix. KRK Rokit 5 G4 can give you that clarity.
  • It has 5-inches glass-aramid composite woofer which provides clarity in the midrange spectrum which is also an important thing for studio speakers.
  • the 5 inches woofer gives you a punchy bass with which you can hear your bass guitar and kick drums very well and give them a better room in your mix.
  • In the backside, we get HF trim, LF trim controls, a standard power switch and volume knob.
  • You can connect 1/4″ TRS/XLR balanced jack and also unbalanced RCA which is a good alternative input feature.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 5″ Aramid Glass Composite
Tweeter Size and Material 1″ Soft Dome
Amp 50-Watts RMS Two Way Bi-Amped 20-Watts for Tweeter and 30-Watts for Woofer
Cabinet MDF wood Black Vinyl Wrap
Frequency Response 45Hz – 35KHz
Inputs 1/4″ TRS – balanced, RCA – unbalanced, XLR – Balanced
Controller Volume, High-Frequency Cutoff Volume, Low-Frequency Cuttoff Volume
Other variants Rokit 4 G3(4″), Rokit 6 G3 (6″), Rokit 8 G3 (8″), Rokit 10-3 G3 (10″)

Price – $299.00

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8. JBL 305P MkII 5″ Studio Monitor

If you have a car or have attended a live concert you already know the brand JBL. JBL manufacture car audio, live sound audio, etc. But only a few of you would be aware that JBL is also active in the pro-recording field. They have a wide range of products in live sound and recording studio gear.

JBLhas a wide range of studio monitors. Their 305P MKII 5″ studio monitor which is listed here, is a bestselling product in Amazon.

305P MKII 5″ is a mid-range monitor and performing well in home studios. The frequency response of this studio monitor is flat enough to get a good quality mix.

You can also use this monitor for reference while recording in high volume. Thanks to its high end capacitors, you get very low distortion in high volume.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 5″ polypropylene-coated woofer
Tweeter Size and Material 1″ Soft Dome
Amp 82-Watts RMS 2-Way Bi-Amped 41-Watts for Tweeter and 41-Watts for Woofer
Cabinet MDF Matte black PVC, Injection-molded structural ABS
Frequency Response 49Hz – 20kHz
Inputs 1/4″ TRS – balanced,  XLR – Balanced
Controller Volume, High-Frequency Cutoff, Input sensitivity, Boundary equalizer
Other variants JBL 306P MkII (6.5″), JBL 306P MkII (6″), JBL LSR308(8″)

Price – $218.99

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Best Studio Monitors Under 600

9. Yamaha HS5 Powered Studio Monitor

yamaha hs80m studio monitor

Yamaha- The big name in the pro-audio business. Everybody, including me and you know about this company. They are not only in pro-audio but active in several other fields from automobile to shipping.

But here we will talk about their pro-audio field. They have a huge range of musical instruments, analog and digital mixers, mics, audio interfaces, effect processors, studio monitors and etc.

Their studio monitors are made for professional studios. Yamaha HS5 is also a pro range studio monitor and delivers tremendous audio quality.

The final mix I get with this professional monitor is perfectly balanced. I love the frequency curve it has.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 5″ polypropylene-coated woofer
Tweeter Size and Material 1″ Soft Dome
Amp 70W RMS, 2-Way Bi-Amped, 25-Watts for Tweeter and 45-Watts for Woofer
Cabinet MDF Matte black PVC, Injection-molded structural ABS
Frequency Response 54Hz – 30kHz
Inputs XLR3-31 type (balanced), PHONE (balanced)
Outputs XLR (L-R)
Controller Volume, Room control, High trim, High cut, Low cut, Phase control
Other variants HS5I (5″), HS7 (6.5″), HS7I (6.5″), HS8I (8″), HS8 (8″)

Price – $399.98

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10. KRK RP8G4-NA Rokit 8 Powered Studio Monitor – 4th Generation

KRK RP8G3 budget studio monitor

As I have already described above the KRK Rokit series monitors. You can refer to KRK Rokit 5 above for more information. However, KRK Rokit 8 has some extra features which you can see in the table below.

Features

Woofer Size and Material 8″ Aramid Glass Composite
Tweeter Size and Material 1″ Soft Dome
Amp 100W RMS, 2-Way Bi-Amped
Cabinet MDF wood Black Vinyl Wrap
Frequency Response 35Hz – 35KHz
Inputs 1/4″ TRS – balanced, RCA – unbalanced, XLR – Balanced
Controller Volume, High-Frequency Cutoff Volume, Low-Frequency Cuttoff Volume
Other variants Rokit 4 G4(4″), Rokit 5 G4 (5″),  Rokit 6 G4 (6″), Rokit 10-3 G4 (10″)

Price – $598.00

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Conclusion

As a recordist and mixing engineer, I would always prefer a good brand because they deliver as close as you aspect. You will never get disappointed by purchasing good brand equipment.

In the above studio monitors, I recommend KRK RP5G3 and Yamaha HS5. I know these monitor pairs a bit high in cost but for the best result, you should invest a little bit more on your equipment.

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