Now, I’ll admit to being something of a nerd when it comes to studio speakers, so when the invitation to try out the new sE Electronics Munro Egg monitors at an exclusive dealer demo came through, I jumped at the chance. This was not only an opportunity to do a proper comparison with some industry leading brands (who doesn’t love a speaker shootout?) but also to get some insight into the unique design of the sE Eggs.
Losing track of the number of studio monitors I’ve listened to which claimed to have revolutionised speaker design, I went in slightly sceptical. Pyramid designs, round cases, hexagonal cases, dual concentric drivers, speakers hewn out of stone. And now the Eggs, which, as the name suggests, are egg-shaped. So not only did these speakers look like another gimmick, they were also from a company who has never made a speaker before, sE Electronics being better known for microphones.
But these speakers were designed in partnership with Andy Munro. In case you aren’t aware of the name, Andy Munro is a studio designer and acoustics guru who has probably designed more of the world’s top studios than anyone else, including monitoring solutions, so immediately these speakers have a credibility that demands further investigation.
Before any listening commenced, we were given an overview of the sE Eggs’ design ethos. The egg-shaped design is to address a coupled of accepted problems inherent to square box speaker design; namely that parallel internal surfaces recreate resonances, and a flat, square front presents a reflective surface with sharp corners, which can create comb-filtering artefacts by contributing both very early and late reflections. The Eggs are also a monitoring solution – rather than being self-powered speakers, they are passive speakers driven from a dedicated amplifier that provides monitoring level control and an auxiliary input for a reference source, such as a CD player. Eliminating the need for a monitor controller means that no unwanted colouration is added by a device placed between the outputs of the console or interface and the speakers.
A sound performance
But the proof of any speaker is always in the listening, and we had the chance to directly compare the sE Eggs against some big names in a controlled studio environment – Focal, PMC, Genelec and Adam. In the listening tests the Eggs performed extremely well, offering clarity and spatial information that was not only exceptional but in some cases simply not present in the other speakers in the line-up. Bass extension is pretty much linear down to around 40Hz and, importantly, frequencies don’t start to disappear as the volume is lowered. The effects of the cabinet design become apparent as you hear more ‘space’ and subtleties like reverb tails become more audible.
All in all, this was an extremely impressive demonstration that shows a new approach to speakers and it’s clear that sE Electronics is addressing monitoring holistically with their amp controller. The Eggs also feature an LED alignment system. This allows for accurate sweet spot placement, including adjustment on the integrated stands that allows for alignment in both the horizontal and vertical planes.
For anyone looking to upgrade their monitoring system, or those concerned that their speakers may not be revealing everything about their audio, the sE Eggs are a system that simply must be checked out. We’ll be operating a system where you can test drive these monitors for seven days in your own studio, as that really is the only way to make an educated decision. Take it from me, anyone who tries these is going to be blown away by what these speakers reveal about mixes.
Below is the first in a series of videos of Andy Munro talking about the design ethos of the Eggs, and about acoustics in general.
To find out how you can give the sE Electronics Munro Egg monitors a trial in your own studio, get in touch with us on 03332 409 306, email audio@Jigsaw24.com or leave us a message in the box below and we’ll get back to you. You can also keep up with our latest pro audio news and offers by following us on Twitter (@Jigsaw24Audio) or liking our Facebook page./strong>