Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Discussions on sound production outside the synthesizer such as mixing, processing, recording, editing and mastering.

Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby Jay200MPH » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:03 am

There's a pair of these up for grabs near me for a not-too-unreasonable price ($160.) Any idea how they'd perform for monitors?

Image

The advert says the midrange cone on the right speaker is "blown" - can possibly repair this if I can't source a replacement. These were built around the same time as the famous Yamaha NS-10 and look like they may share the woofers. If not they've got to be a pretty similar design?

I can't find much info on these guys out on the web.
User avatar
Jay200MPH
Active Member
Active Member
 
Posts: 272
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:04 pm
Location: Auckland
Gear: Currently active:
x0xb0x, MC-202, Microkorg, PSR-36, mini-KP, SA-5, JV-1010, S-760, CMU-800.
Sequenced in Impulse Tracker on a P233 w/AWE64+GUS.

Advertisement:

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby Stab Frenzy » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:03 am

NS-10s are terrible terrible monitors. I wouldn't get these, especially with the blown driver. The cones will be pretty tired in speakers that old too.
User avatar
Stab Frenzy
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 9088
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:41 pm
Location: monster island*
Gear: Octatrack, Analog Four, Eurorack, Minibrute, Ultranova, many FX

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby Jay200MPH » Wed Jan 08, 2014 7:10 am

Yeah, I'm thinking I might give them a pass; I'd kind of prefer powered monitors anyway. That said I've been hoping to find a non-bass reflex setup which really limits my 'modern' options.

Honestly if they were $50 I'd probably grab them and just flog them again if I didn't like them, but $160 is pushing my willingness to gamble. They can't possibly be worse than the Harman/Kardon home computer speakers I'm 'monitoring' with right now.

BTW the last time I saw NS-10s on that site they were listed at $800 (no idea if they actually sold though.)
User avatar
Jay200MPH
Active Member
Active Member
 
Posts: 272
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:04 pm
Location: Auckland
Gear: Currently active:
x0xb0x, MC-202, Microkorg, PSR-36, mini-KP, SA-5, JV-1010, S-760, CMU-800.
Sequenced in Impulse Tracker on a P233 w/AWE64+GUS.

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby Stab Frenzy » Wed Jan 08, 2014 9:11 am

Everybody wants NS-10s because they've seen them in all the photos of studios but they've never heard them. They sound truly terrible, but due to supply and demand the price keeps going up.
User avatar
Stab Frenzy
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 9088
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:41 pm
Location: monster island*
Gear: Octatrack, Analog Four, Eurorack, Minibrute, Ultranova, many FX

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby madtheory » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:37 pm

I beg to differ. They sound good when the input is good. If the input is crap then they sound crap. Thing is most audio sounds crap! This is why they were a successful box for mixing. I personally never enjoyed the sound, but the mixes always translated. That is the experience of thousands of sound engineers.

The NS10s have excellent transient response, which is a much more important parameter than frequency response. They're very good for revealing amp distortion, so they need a good amp. There can be issues with overheating that causes them to perform off spec. More info here:

http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/sep08/a ... hans10.htm

I would definitely audition the NS-266. The NS20 was the "full range" top spec version of the NS-10, so my guess is that these are a variation of that model.
User avatar
madtheory
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
 
Posts: 3204
Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 12:45 pm
Location: Cork, Ireland
Real name: Tomas Mulcahy
Gear: Fabreeze, Buck Owens Moog, Korg Warlock 9000, Roland Sultan of Brunei, Moog Ribald Cat.
Band: madtheory

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby Jay200MPH » Wed Jan 08, 2014 11:50 pm

Well, I guess I'm a sucker. After the auction ended with no bids the seller offered them to me for $120, so I bit. Will pick them up later this week.

I am aware of the limitations and the very polar views people have of the NS-10s. Will be interesting to see how these perform. If I don't like them, I'm sure I can flip them and probably get my money back out, especially if I can fix that driver.

Considering I'm using these speakers for 'monitors' right now (no sub even) I'm betting the Yamahas will be some kind of improvement.

So I need a (modestly-priced!) speaker amp now. Something 1U half rack would be nice. Suggestions?
User avatar
Jay200MPH
Active Member
Active Member
 
Posts: 272
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:04 pm
Location: Auckland
Gear: Currently active:
x0xb0x, MC-202, Microkorg, PSR-36, mini-KP, SA-5, JV-1010, S-760, CMU-800.
Sequenced in Impulse Tracker on a P233 w/AWE64+GUS.

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby Stab Frenzy » Thu Jan 09, 2014 1:07 am

madtheory wrote:I beg to differ. They sound good when the input is good.

I beg to differ, even with well mixed material they still have no bottom end (how can you tell what the bottom end of your mix is doing if your monitors can't reproduce it?) and are incredibly fatiguing to listen to. They're useful for a reference check (ie what hurts my ears the most when I listen through the NS10s? OK turn that down) but for actual mix sessions they cane your ears before you have a chance to get to the 'input is good' stage. I don't need to read a sound on sound article about them, I've mixed on them plenty. There are heaps of other monitors out there which will give you a mix that translates well that you can mix on for extended periods of time without feeling like someone's been having a go on the insides of your ears with sandpaper. :thumbleft:

Jay200MPH wrote:Well, I guess I'm a sucker. After the auction ended with no bids the seller offered them to me for $120, so I bit. Will pick them up later this week...

So I need a (modestly-priced!) speaker amp now. Something 1U half rack would be nice. Suggestions?

Cool, let us know how you go with them. Re: Amps, see if there's any second-hand Crowns going near you, also I think the ART SLA series are pretty decent for the money.
User avatar
Stab Frenzy
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 9088
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:41 pm
Location: monster island*
Gear: Octatrack, Analog Four, Eurorack, Minibrute, Ultranova, many FX

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby Jay200MPH » Thu Jan 09, 2014 10:01 am

Just picked them up. They're really tidy overall. The guy selling them used to run a shop and really knew his stuff, which means (a) I'm inclined to believe him when he said the rest of the cones are in good condition, and (b) I'm inclined to believe him that the mid driver isn't really repairable. (It's showing an open circuit - these are sealed drivers.)

He did however throw in a matched pair of Sanyo mids in great shape that will be a direct bolt-in swap, they fit in the stock ports perfectly. So I'll give those a try until I can source an original.

The impedence and wattage ratings on these things are exactly the same as the NS-10s (8 ohm, 60W nominal / 150W max) ... There is an informative thread about the NS-10s on Gearslutz - the consensus there seems to be that an underpowered amp will distort more easily & damage the tweeters. (Not very clear why - I assume that would be because people crank the weak amp to get MOAR LOUDNESS!!1 and it starts clipping?)

Anyone have experience with Samick amps? There's one on the same site that looks like it would do the job. Samick K-9230 There's also a DB Technology MPA204 but it's more expensive and not rated for as much power.
User avatar
Jay200MPH
Active Member
Active Member
 
Posts: 272
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:04 pm
Location: Auckland
Gear: Currently active:
x0xb0x, MC-202, Microkorg, PSR-36, mini-KP, SA-5, JV-1010, S-760, CMU-800.
Sequenced in Impulse Tracker on a P233 w/AWE64+GUS.

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby madtheory » Thu Jan 09, 2014 1:33 pm

A low powered amp that's running into clipping will produce more square like waveforms. These make the drivers move in and out too quickly which will damage them. You at least 50W a side, 100W is better.
Stab Frenzy wrote: I don't need to read a sound on sound article about them, I've mixed on them plenty.

Well I found that article to be a revelation especially having mixed a lot on them, and hating the fucking things. It explains a lot of the problems like the fatigue thing. Also interesting is there's a link in it to research by Philip Newell et al on transient response of thirty or so studio monitors.
User avatar
madtheory
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
 
Posts: 3204
Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 12:45 pm
Location: Cork, Ireland
Real name: Tomas Mulcahy
Gear: Fabreeze, Buck Owens Moog, Korg Warlock 9000, Roland Sultan of Brunei, Moog Ribald Cat.
Band: madtheory

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby madtheory » Thu Jan 09, 2014 10:23 pm

I just read the SOS article again, and here is the answer to your question: how you can hear bass frequencies from an NS-10 that are lower than it is specified to reproduce:

" Andy Munro presented a paper to the Audio Engineering Society in the early '90s, in which he examined in passing the acoustic effects on the NS10 of placing it on the meter bridge of a big desk. The paper showed that the NS10's frequency response flattens in such circumstances — reflection from the desk reinforces output in the upper bass and low-mid region."
User avatar
madtheory
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
 
Posts: 3204
Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 12:45 pm
Location: Cork, Ireland
Real name: Tomas Mulcahy
Gear: Fabreeze, Buck Owens Moog, Korg Warlock 9000, Roland Sultan of Brunei, Moog Ribald Cat.
Band: madtheory

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby Jay200MPH » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:59 am

Well, as I said in the Latest Purchase thread in General, I've got them in place and have given them the first test. I'm not 'blown away', but they seem decent. The bass is powerful enough without being boomy, the highs are clear and don't seem to distort and aren't especially piercing. It's hard to tell with one of the mids out of commission; going to have to do some more listening. I don't master/mix/listen at very loud volumes typically so I'm more concerned with how they do at lower output levels.

Also my full-size mixer is still under repair so I'm using my backup 'mini-mixer' which may be affecting the sound somewhat.

They are pretty tidy though, don't look worn out or abused at all:
Image
Image
^^ Positioned for testing only! I will put them in a more sensible place... when I figure out how. Wasn't expecting them to be this big from the advert photo!

Image
I'm driving them with this Sony hi-fi stack I picked up for next to nothing. It looks a little chincy but the manual rates it at 95W/120W for the front outputs. This should be good enough?? There are so many different ways mfgrs write their power ratings it's really hard to determine what the spec actually is!

It came with some extra speakers if I feel like playing around too:
Image

I'm well under $200NZ into this whole setup at the moment. I still think I've done pretty well.
User avatar
Jay200MPH
Active Member
Active Member
 
Posts: 272
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:04 pm
Location: Auckland
Gear: Currently active:
x0xb0x, MC-202, Microkorg, PSR-36, mini-KP, SA-5, JV-1010, S-760, CMU-800.
Sequenced in Impulse Tracker on a P233 w/AWE64+GUS.

Re: Yamaha NS-266 as monitors

Postby madtheory » Mon Jan 13, 2014 9:43 pm

Looks like a very good deal!
User avatar
madtheory
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
 
Posts: 3204
Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 12:45 pm
Location: Cork, Ireland
Real name: Tomas Mulcahy
Gear: Fabreeze, Buck Owens Moog, Korg Warlock 9000, Roland Sultan of Brunei, Moog Ribald Cat.
Band: madtheory


Return to Sound Production

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests