Neumann KH150 and KH120II

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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by porthoss78 »

Hugh Robjohns wrote: Fri May 05, 2023 9:54 am I'm still very happy with all that my analogue 310s tell me... In terms of quality for money they are still exceptional.

I had a Trinnov system on them for a while which does all the frequency response and time domain straightening that a DSP upgrade would deliver, and while there were definitely audible improvements they weren't actually all that significant.

As a rough guide I'd say the analogue KH310s would rate a solid 8.5/10 on the Robjohns Scale of Sonic Perfection, and with advanced DSP correction they went up to a 9/10.

I have toyed with the idea of adding the 750 sub to benefit from DSP correction, too, but Then I'd have to make space for a sub.....

That's good to hear about the Trinov not adding much to your setup, I think that also goes goes to prove how much you can improve your monitors by making sure your room is well treated (which yours is).

Perhaps you can save the KH750 sub for your next larger room :D

I like the Robjohns Scale of Sonic Perfection (RSOSP) score, hope we get some more of these in the future! :bouncy:
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by dickiefunk »

Hugh Robjohns wrote: Fri May 05, 2023 2:49 pm
dickiefunk wrote: Fri May 05, 2023 1:07 pm I guess I was wondering how much of an improvement the mk2's would be and if that would have any noticeable mixing benefits?

Some, and probably nothing dramatic.

The law of diminishing returns applies here. There's a huge difference between, say Absolute 2s and KH120s, but a relatively small difference between the mk1 and mk2.

There is a difference, of course. The mk2 is obviously better in some respects, but those benefits can largely be obtained in other ways and potentially more cost-effectively.

The sub looks like the most beneficial and cost effective move.

I think so... but maybe you should try and get to hear some mk2s before committing.

One other option I’m considering is selling the sub and getting higher end headphones for mixing sub frequencies. If I go that route I may well change my KH120’s for the mkII versions for the added benefit of using the MA1 at a later date.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

Just to stir the pudding once more... headphones are great for analysing bass free of misleading room modes. But... they don't provide that visceral, trouser flapping energy that a subwoofer gives.

The 750DSP sub with the MA1 will correct your original mk1 KH120s, so you retain the best of all worlds... assuming your room's bass modes are reasonably controlled acoustically.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Thomas Shea »

I am new here on the forum. TES Productions - Nebraska, USA - Soundclick.com/ThomasShea

Last year I decided to upgrade the monitors in my studio, which uses a distributed workstation concept instead of a consolidated method.

I decided to focus on all Neumann monitors - since I was impressed with their measurements (mainly on Audio Science Review) and wanted to have a consistent "family" sound.

So now I have KH 310's, KH 120's/KH 750, another pair of KH 120's and two pairs of KH 150's. All of them are used as very nearfield monitors - ie 1 to 1.3 meters from my listening position.

Although I am very impressed with all of them, I believe I am most impressed with the KH150's. The two most important things to me are a flat frequency response and low distortion. The KH 150's are, to me, quite remarkable. Neumann audio engineers did an excellent job of designing them. In addition to the excellent SOS review, the measurements on Audio Science Review show the results.

I am presently in the process of ordering a pair of KH 120 II's. Although I don't really need them, I am intrigued by them. I am particularly interested in comparing them to the KH 150's. I suspect that except for the bass extension, they will be quite similar.

I look forward to participating here on the SOS Forum. Thankyou

Tom
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

I expect they will be almost identical (apart from the bass extension) thanks to the linearisation that DSP allows!

While the KH310 and original KH120 are great speakers (especially the 310), their analogue technology inherently imposes certain compromises and limitations on sonic accuracy that are simply not present in the KH80, KH150 or KH120ii DSP speakers. These three are really in a class apart, and making direct comparisons isn't really a fair exercise.

Of course, adding external DSP alignment to these analogue speakers will realise most of the benefits of the integrated DSP technology.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by jaminem »

Thomas Shea wrote: Thu May 11, 2023 4:40 pm
So now I have KH 310's, KH 120's/KH 750, another pair of KH 120's and two pairs of KH 150's. All of them are used as very nearfield monitors - ie 1 to 1.3 meters from my listening position.

Eh? - 5 sets of speakers all the same family sound and presumably at least some at the same workstation?

Unless you have 5 physical workstations (at which point feel free to ignore me) whats the point? surely you want different speakers at the same workstation to get a different perspective? i.e main monitors, some NS10's and a grotbox or other bandwidth limited speaker? This way you can get a better idea of how your mix translates on different speakers.

wondering what having several sets of the same type of speaker at a single workstation achieves exactly?
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Thomas Shea »

A legitimate question. I have three basic workstations for production.

1) Audient 4816 SE - with KH 150 monitors.

2) Reaper / PC / with several Avalon Design and Neumann outboard hardware units - with KH 310's and KH 120's/KH750. I like to have two different monitor systems here. Although they are very similar in sound, there is a small difference, which gives me a different perspective. Also, the KH 310's are .3 meters further away, with a slightly wider spread.

3) Mixing/Mastering station - SSL Big Six, Fusion, Bus+, UC1 and UF8 - with KH 150's and KH 120's. Here also I want to have a choice of monitors to compare the sound.

Let me know if you have any additional questions.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Jorge »

Thomas Shea wrote: Thu May 11, 2023 5:34 pm A legitimate question. I have three basic workstations for production.

1) Audient 4816 SE - with KH 150 monitors.

2) Reaper / PC / with several Avalon Design and Neumann outboard hardware units - with KH 310's and KH 120's/KH750. I like to have two different monitor systems here. Although they are very similar in sound, there is a small difference, which gives me a different perspective. Also, the KH 310's are .3 meters further away, with a slightly wider spread.

3) Mixing/Mastering station - SSL Big Six, Fusion, Bus+, UC1 and UF8 - with KH 150's and KH 120's. Here also I want to have a choice of monitors to compare the sound.

Let me know if you have any additional questions.

Wow, you have a veritable laboratory in which you could compare different Neumann monitors! Very interesting.
Can you give us a sense of how the KH150s without a sub compare with the KH120/KH750 combination?
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Thomas Shea »

I wish I could post photos here but I do not have my photos on a server......

Anyway, I received a pair of KH 120 II's yesterday (from Sweetwater).

I spent a few hours comparing the KH 120 II's to KH 150's. I first balanced the volume and frequency controls to level match them. It was surprisingly easy. But it makes sense because the Neumann audio engineers seem to go to great lengths to make all of their monitors have that family sound (ie flat frequency response and low distortion).

I could tell no difference between the KH 150's and KH 120 II's except for a couple pieces of music with very low bass. As you know there are almost no pop or country or hip hop songs with any content below 40 Hz. First, there are almost no instruments that go that low. The lowest frequency of a bass guitar is 40 Hz. Second, music producers intentionally cut out off the bottom octave because they know how rare it is for any sound system to be able to reproduce those frequencies.

Anyway, I was surprised. I thought that I would be able to tell some kind of difference. I could not.

I will continue to compare these - and perhaps more importantly, compare the KH 120's to the KH 120 II's.

I should also note that I caution against any subjective opinions - including my own. I really only trust good scientific/engineering measurements. Besides, the measurements by Neumann, the best source is Audio Science Review. Amir's measurements of the KH 150's show them to be quite extraordinary. I await his measurements of the KH 120 II's.

Nevertheless I will provide my subjective impressions for the little that they might be worth.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Wonks »

The low B0 string on a five-string bass goes down to 30.87Hz and they are pretty common these days.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

True... and a lot of modern music has significant content in the bottom octave. I'm getting rumbles (mostly from synths) at 20-30-40Hz all the time.

And much as I'm sure Audio Science Review is creditable, it would be remiss of me on the Sound On Sound forums not to highlight our own Paul Ward reviews which always include detailed acoustic measurements and analysis.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Jorge »

Thanks Tom. I believe SOS is preparing to publish a review of the KH120II in the June issue, so I expect that will include much objective information in addition to subjective impressions by highly experienced SOS staff.

I have been comparing the KH120A I have had for years with the KH120II I just received a few days ago, in a reasonably well treated rehearsal/recording studio in my basement. Much of the music we play is Cuban Timba and AfroCuban Jazz, which have very melodic and deep bass in most songs. At rehearsals I play back recordings of our group and other music for the whole group and the bass rolloff of the KH120II with no sub is still audible for the lowest bass notes. Our bass player has a 4 string and doesn't plan to get a 5 string. I use headphones for mixing the low bass but would like the studio monitors to have pretty flat playback capability down to 41 Hz. We hope to make an album in this studio as well and I would do the mixing but probably not the mastering.

So I am deciding whether to add a subwoofer to the KH120IIs (or KH120As) or to get the KH150 monitors to use without a sub instead of the KH120 plus sub. Hence my question to you about comparing those 2 configurations.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Wonks »

Hugh Robjohns wrote: Sun May 14, 2023 7:46 pm And much as I'm sure Audio Science Review is creditable, it would be remiss of me on the Sound On Sound forums not to highlight our own Paul Ward reviews which always include detailed acoustic measurements and analysis.

The Elf’s reviews are almost as detailed as Phil Ward’s, your monitor reviewer. ;)
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

:oops: oops. Sorry for the name swap, Gents. It's been a tiring weekend!
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by tea for two »

Hugh Robjohns wrote: Fri May 05, 2023 10:17 pm Just to stir the pudding once more... headphones are great for analysing bass free of misleading room modes. But... they don't provide that visceral, trouser flapping energy that a subwoofer gives.

I can whole heartedly endorse Zuke's recommendation Audeze LCD-X.
Although I have AKG712 for checking Bass specs say 10Hz, these Audeze are another level.
There is also wearable Subpack to wear as a backpack.
Haven't tried them so cannot comment.

Although an online hearing test said my hearing is impaired below 24Hz.

Hugh Robjohns wrote: Sun May 14, 2023 7:46 pm would be remiss of me on the Sound On Sound forums not to highlight our own Paul Ward reviews which always include detailed acoustic measurements and analysis.

Phil twin of Paul is my go to :lol:
https://www.soundonsound.com/search/all ... =Phil+ward
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Thomas Shea »

Jorge wrote: Sun May 14, 2023 8:05 pm Thanks Tom. I believe SOS is preparing to publish a review of the KH120II in the June issue, so I expect that will include much objective information in addition to subjective impressions by highly experienced SOS staff.

I have been comparing the KH120A I have had for years with the KH120II I just received a few days ago, in a reasonably well treated rehearsal/recording studio in my basement. Much of the music we play is Cuban Timba and AfroCuban Jazz, which have very melodic and deep bass in most songs. At rehearsals I play back recordings of our group and other music for the whole group and the bass rolloff of the KH120II with no sub is still audible for the lowest bass notes. Our bass player has a 4 string and doesn't plan to get a 5 string. I use headphones for mixing the low bass but would like the studio monitors to have pretty flat playback capability down to 41 Hz. We hope to make an album in this studio as well and I would do the mixing but probably not the mastering.

So I am deciding whether to add a subwoofer to the KH120IIs (or KH120As) or to get the KH150 monitors to use without a sub instead of the KH120 plus sub. Hence my question to you about comparing those 2 configurations.

That is a quite interesting - I will be interested in your decision.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Jorge »

A subwoofer does add some low end flatness to the KH120A/II but has anyone used the KH150 with the KH750 or other subwoofer? For 80-90 dB music down to 40 Hz in a reasonably well treated home studio, would a KH750 sub add anything to the KH150?
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by sonics »

tea for two wrote: Sun May 14, 2023 8:34 pm Although an online hearing test said my hearing is impaired below 24Hz.

Your speaker playback system is flat to 24Hz? Do remember that those frequencies are felt by the body, not heard by the ears.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Wonks »

No, he's imp-eared, rather like Spock. :D
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Wonks »

Jorge wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 12:56 pm A subwoofer does add some low end flatness to the KH120A/II but has anyone used the KH150 with the KH750 or other subwoofer? For 80-90 dB music down to 40 Hz in a reasonably well treated home studio, would a KH750 sub add anything to the KH150?

In theory, you'll be going right down to 18Hz (at -3dB) with the ZH750, which is around 20Hz lower than just the KH150 (though the maximum SPL graph for 1% THD on the KH750 page tells a very different story about quality LF roll-off, so I'm not sure what's going on there). So another whole octave of sound.

https://www.neumann.com/en-en/products/ ... h-750-dsp/

I'm thinking that with 20Hz sounds you'd need a very well treated studio rather than a just reasonably treated one. Sound transmission of deep bass may also be an issue at 90dB levels. If you're nice and isolated, then maybe not a problem (apart from possible building vibration), but with near-neighbours, you might not be that popular.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by tea for two »

sonics wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 5:50 pm
tea for two wrote: Sun May 14, 2023 8:34 pm Although an online hearing test said my hearing is impaired below 24Hz.

Your speaker playback system is flat to 24Hz? Do remember that those frequencies are felt by the body, not heard by the ears.

Gosh I wish my poor Eris were lol.
It's a headphone hearing test I did on my K712.

::

Wonks wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 6:05 pm No, he's imp-eared, rather like Spock. :D

:lol: I am illogical.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by sonics »

tea for two wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:35 pm Gosh I wish my poor Eris were lol.
It's a headphone hearing test I did on my K712.

Ah, the ones with a bass roll-off below 100Hz to :lol:

And how were the Eris 3.5 at 24Hz? Flapping your trousers? :shocked:
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by tea for two »

sonics wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:44 pm
tea for two wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:35 pm Gosh I wish my poor Eris were lol.
It's a headphone hearing test I did on my K712.

Ah, the ones with a bass roll-off below 100Hz to :lol:

And how were the Eris 3.5 at 24Hz? Flapping your trousers? :shocked:

:lol: those poor Eris are still hanging on.
K712 pro specs say 10Hz I can't feel it to save me life .
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Wonks »

sonics wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:44 pm
tea for two wrote: Tue May 16, 2023 7:35 pm Gosh I wish my poor Eris were lol.
It's a headphone hearing test I did on my K712.

Ah, the ones with a bass roll-off below 100Hz to :lol:
:

Well, tests seem to show them down at about -10dB at 20Hz rolling off from 100Hz where it’s nominally flat.

So pretty good, if not perfect. But you’ll need a fair bit of correction to get them flat enough to be any use for a hearing test.

You’d also need to look at the equal loudness curves for the SPL you’re working at and make allowances in volume for that. Probably (not an audiologist).
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by tea for two »

https://www.audiocheck.net/testtones_si ... 20-20k.php
Sine sweep tone 20Hz to 20kHz.

https://onlinetonegenerator.com/hearingtest.html
Tone from 0Hz to as high as ears can hear.
It's too fast to get a reading for the lowest Hz but it's useful for low mid to higher.

https://www.soundguys.com/hearing-test-20567/
This has 20Hz tone, 16kHz tone, 20kHz tone.

https://hearingtest.online/
For 250Hz to 2kHz.

https://hearing-screener.beyondhearing. ... WI/welcome
For 1kHz 2kHz.

http://www.noiseaddicts.com/2009/03/can ... ring-test/
For 8kHz to 22kHz tones.

Doing these tests in the morning just now 7.34am ish
using K712.
Beyond 12.57kHz my hearing is impaired (imp eared lol).
I can hear 20Hz fine.

My main issue is certain frequency sounds now hurt me ears such as violins played high up, various synthy sounds, lots of kick sounds snare sounds, lots of hihats : these are on commercial releases.
So nowadays I choose sounds edit sounds mix so as not to hurt me ears.
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by porthoss78 »

Just in case some people had not seen it, Neumann issued the following information on Instagram about the KH120 II:

Dear Neumann Community:⁣
We need to inform you that some of our new KH 120 II monitors are affected by a firmware error that prevents them from being recognized by our MA 1 Monitor Alignment software.⁣

Please note that we have identified the root cause (which in no way affects the quality of the monitor), got to work immediately, and are now releasing MA 1 version 1.6.3, which will detect the affected units and update the firmware, fix the error and set them to factory-like condition.⁣

All KH 120 II with serial number 6173455293 and above are not affected.⁣

We would like to thank our community for their feedback and contributions that allowed us to quickly fix this issue.⁣

We would like to apologize to the affected customers for the inconvenience caused and are sure that you will now enjoy your KH 120 II to the fullest.⁣

Click the link in our bio to download the latest MA 1 version 1.6.3!⁣


Seems pretty straight forward :)
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by ConcertinaChap »

What an ingenious fix!

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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by ConcertinaChap »

Well having read Phil Ward's review of the KH120 II's my first reaction is where's my credit card ...

So, in fact, was my second. Managed to resist so far but it's only a matter of time.

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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

For ease of access to the KH120mk2 review:

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/neumann-kh120-ii
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Re: Neumann KH150 and KH120II

Post by RichardT »

I wonder if there's a trade in for KH120 Mk 1s......
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