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Use and Installation

Are Genelec systems suitable for installation in rooms with very high humidity and temperature (IP65 requirements)?

Genelec products are designed to be used indoors and in spaces that have controlled temperature and humidity. In hot and tropical countries, broadcasting stations, radio, TV and recording studios usually have air conditioning systems to keep such environmental factors under control. It is not recommended, for example, to use Genelec products in an environment where the ambient temperature is above 30 degrees Celsius (86 F). More details on the environmental requirements are available from the Genelec factory on request.

Can I use two or more monitors close to each other (like in a PA system) or is it better to just use one large monitor on each channel?

Always use one monitor for each channel. PA systems use multiple parallel drivers to increase maximum SPL or coverage area. However, this technique typically results in coloration of the audio due to interference from adjacent sound sources.

The big disadvantage of most PA systems is that they do not have a smooth power response. This is not an acceptable situation for studio monitoring intended for hearing very accurately small details in the audio signal.

The exception to this rule is with subwoofers. There are advantages in positioning them close to each other and the audio quality is not compromised at very low frequencies. So, in conclusion:

  • Use only one monitor for each reproduction channel for an accurate frequency response
  • To gain SPL, move the listening position closer to the monitors or use a larger model in the Genelec range

Do I need to leave space behind the monitor for cooling?

We recommend you leave about 50 mm (2 in) space behind the monitor. If the monitor is installed in a recess, ensure that there is sufficient air circulation behind the monitor to keep the amplifier cool.

How can I mount my speaker system on a stand, onto a wall or ceiling?

A wide range of mounting accessories is available from Genelec, from floor and table stands, ceiling and wall mounts, flush-mounting and rack-mounting kits to wall mountings.

For a complete overview of our current offering, please visit our Accessories page.

How do I know which Genelec model to choose for my application?

The Genelec range has a speaker model for every application.

As you move through the range from a physically small product to larger ones the following benefits are typically gained:

  • Increasing maximum sound output level
  • Decreasing low frequency cut-off
  • Directivity control extends down to lower frequencies

You can be sure that the entire Genelec range offers unparalleled consistency of sound quality across all of its models.

In which countries can I use my speaker, what are standard mains voltages?

Certain Genelec speakers and subwoofers offer a wide mains voltage input range and can be used anywhere in the world with the suitable local main cable. These products use standardized mains connectors on the products, so the needed mains cable can always be obtained locally if the product is moved to another country.

Certain Genelec products support fixed mains voltage, only.

Check the printing close to the Genelec product main input to determine the mains voltage and mains frequency the product works with. If fixed mains voltage products are used in countries having a different mains voltage, a suitable external step-up or step-down transformer must be used. Consult your local electrician regarding these transformers. The power handling capacity of the external transformer must meet or exceed the power consumption printed on the Genelec product.

What active speaker models do you recommend for listening to classical music, rock or jazz?

All Genelec models are designed to have neutral sound character so they can be used for monitoring and listening to any type of music. If you monitor/listen to music with high bass output SPL's containing low frequencies then physically small systems may be applicable for near field listening only, close to the monitor, and may not be able to output the lowest frequencies due to a higher system cut-off frequency. In this case we recommend a larger system for increased maximum SPL and a deeper LF cut-off frequency or adding a subwoofer.

What are the basic checks to do to make sure I have a good quality installation for accurate monitoring of my music?

Here is a basic checklist of things that you should do to ensure that you have a good environment for accurate monitoring. There are links to other answers that will give more details if you are unsure what to do.

Basic Monitor Positioning Checks:

  • Ensure that the monitors are all placed at the correct orientation relative to the listening position; for standard stereo the left and right monitors should be at 30 degree angle relative to the main listening direction, at the listening location
  • For products that do not support Smart Monitoring (products that are not SAM products) measure the distance to the side walls and the wall behind the monitors and ensure that the distances agree to within 1 cm (0.4") at least for any stereo pairs in your system (for example, the left-right stereo pair in the front). Do this for the front and also rear left/right pairs in a multichannel system
  • The materials and construction of the walls close to the left-right stereo pairs should be similar for most accurate sound image reproduction
  • Ensure the furniture and equipment in the room has left/right symmetry
  • Clear the space between you and the monitors from all unnecessary equipment, e.g. computer screens and equipment

Measurements:

  • Use pink noise and a sound level meter to check that all monitors are reproducing the same input at the same sound levels
  • Use a measuring tape to check that the monitor distances to the listening position are the same. Listen or measure to ensure that all of the monitors have similar frequency response at the listening location. Use tone controls or GLM AutoCal in SAM products to obtain a flat frequency response at the listening location
  • Ideally the frequency responses should agree in a ±2.5 dB window or better. If this is not the case, often room acoustics or monitor positioning are the reason for the problem
  • If you experience a lack of bass level at the listening position try to reduce, or increase the distances to the walls from the monitors to eliminate acoustic low frequency cancellations due to wall reflections

Test signals:

  • Use pink noise to check that all monitoring levels are equal. Also if the tone of noise is different, use measurement tools to determine why the frequency responses are not similar. A pink noise sound track is available under our Audio Test Signals section.
  • Use a very familiar recording, for example male speech by preferably someone you know, to evaluate tonal naturalness. If you notice that the tonal balance is not natural then measure the frequency responses from all monitors to identify reasons for coloration. With SAM systems, re-run the GLM AutoCal calibration.

Subwoofer tests:

  • Use a sinusoidal sweep to see that the frequency response from the subwoofer and the subwoofer+monitor combination has equal sound output across the audio range. If the level variation is large, move the subwoofer or adjust controls to give a flat frequency extension down to the subwoofer low frequency cut-off
  • If there are reduction in sound level (frequency response notches) in the frequency response consider moving the subwoofer, monitors, or adjusting the subwoofer phase alignment settings

What do Genelec models' coding and numbering mean?

Genelec product names are based on a coding and numbering structure that is detailed in the document below.

What is Genelec's goal when designing an active studio monitor?

Our design philosophy is:

  • Studio monitors must produce uncoloured and neutral audio, thereby delivering the sound track content unmodified to the listener
  • The monitor or subwoofer must add nothing in the signal, neither should it remove anything from it
  • The monitors and subwoofers are adaptable to different rooms and installation locations, can compensate and eliminate room influence to audio quality, are reliable and are able to handle the heavy work load required in professional audio applications

As with any other engineering solution in the physical real world there are design trade-offs. The design of a professional studio monitor balances the following parameters:

  • Cabinet size is minimized
  • Low frequency cut-off is set to as low as possible, to enable the system reproduce also low bass frequencies
  • Maximum sound pressure level output is maximized
  • Sensitivity is set to the appropriate professional range while the idle channel noise is kept inaudible
  • Distortion is minimized

Note that sound quality is not a matter open for discussion - it must never be compromised.