Your unbalanced PC speakers can’t compare to a set of M-Audio BX4 4.5 Inch 120-Watt Powered Multimedia Reference Monitor Speakers. Those built-in speakers sound like garbage. It’s probably time that you upgrade to the next level.
Are you interested in getting into music, podcasts, video narration, and/or video production? Do you need a way to hear your videos and music but are on a budget? M-Audio BX4 is a great choice for anyone in need of a good pair of reference monitors, but who doesn’t have a lot of money to spend or a lot of space.
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M-Audio BX4 4.5 Inch 120-Watt Powered Desktop Computer Speakers / Studio Monitors
M-Audio is well-known across the music industry. Their software is an industry-standard and their hardware is nothing to scoff at. I’ve used The AV30s and AV40s prior to using the BX4s. The AV30s are pretty good for their size. Same with the AV40s. However, the BX4s are a step above because they have balanced inputs.
The 4.5-inch Kevlar drivers are bassy and the tweeters have a natural sound. A lot of PC speakers are over bassy in the low frequency and somewhat tinny in the highs. The BX4s don’t really have that issue. Especially, if you use floor stands which is the recommended set-up, instead of sitting them on your desk.
Name: M-Audio BX4 4.5 Inch 120-Watt Powered Speakers
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Overall Rank: 93 out of 100
After using different M-Audio models and monitoring speakers from other companies over the past 25 years, I can conclude that the BX4s are definitely a valuable set of speakers. Especially, for a first-time producer. Granted, there are better monitors available, but for the size and price, you’re not going to find too many better deals.
If you’re into music production, you might know that it is best to test your mixes on different sized speakers, so don’t get rid of your smaller ones, or if you eventually get something to replace these hang on to them so you can try your mix out on all of them.
We’ve all had those cheap champagne speakers that come packed in with a PC bundle. They are junk but remember a lot of people never upgrade from them. So, you still should check out what your mix will sound like coming through them. I use 5 sets of speakers and the car to test my final mix.
I start at a point where you can barely hear it. Then, I move it up to about 25%. Then to 50%. Next, put to 75%. Finally, I slowly move it all the way up 100% to make sure the speakers are pounding but not sounding like they’re rupturing. If your speakers or monitors are popping, rattling, or sounds garbled at full volume then there’s a good probability your mix is too loud.
M-Audio BX4 120-Watt Powered Speakers, Product Overview
The BX-4s are an exceptional set of PC speakers that more than double for video gaming, streaming music, movies, TV, and anything else that has high-quality sound. Not only do they have unbalanced composite style RCA inputs, but they also have 1/4-inch balanced inputs for producers and audiophiles.
The M-Audio BX4s also have an Active Speaker Position switch. This enables them to be set up depending on your wiring and positioning parameters. So, if your power is 4 feet to the left or 6 feet off to the right, you’ll be able to set them up in a position that best fits your desk, workstation, room positioning.
A lot of people are limited by space. So, the M-Audio BX4s are an excellent choice for their size and because they aren’t too powerful to the point where the walls will be rumbling. However, they are still adequate for most rooms, especially if you still need to hear the mid lows and bass frequencies.
Not only that but the ports on the back allow for a more extended low-frequency response. This compensates for their lack of size. Don’t be fooled, to get their sound quality to the level it’s at, the engineers had to take a lot of variables into consideration. At first glance, it’s extremely hard to tell there’s a lot going on inside and outside of the BX4.
The Good & the Bad
With all of its features and construction, there are quite a few great things about these monitor speakers and not a lot of negatives. After upgrading from the AV series, the balanced input adds an extra level of connectivity.
Initially, I was impressed at the difference between my AV30s and the BX4s, thinking, “Oh, It’s just bigger speakers!” Well, that’s kind of true, but the technology that goes into them and their design features are meant to improve every part of the user experience over the previous iterations.
Since there are options I have my TV connected to the RCA inputs, my tablet can easily be connected through the front eighth-inch jack to check out the beat I was making or video I was watching, I then use the Balanced Quarter-Inch to connect to my Focusrite Scarlett Solo Interface. However, they can obviously not be used at the same time.
- High-Quality construction with Kevlar Low-Frequency Woofers and Silk Dome Tweeters. The BX4s are not as hefty as the AV series. They have a minimalist feel with a little more sleekness than either the AV30s or AV40s.
- Multiple ways to connect your devices including front 1/8 inch jack, balanced quarter-inch inputs, and unbalanced RCA jacks. Even though the quarter-inch inputs are balanced if you need to you can use them in an unbalanced setup, but the quality will be negligibly diminished.
- The BX4s are made for easy connection and setup. Regardless of which way you decide to connect your audio devices, it’s super easy to set up. Even if you accidentally set up the left speaker on the right side you can simply flip the Active Speaker Position switch to fix the issue immediately. To connect the pair there’s just an eighth-inch cable for the job.
- The BX4s feature dual EQs one for the Highs and one for the Lows. This allows you to adjust them for your room if you just intend to listen to music, movies, TV shows, and internet videos, but if you plan on creating music or mixing audio for your videos you can just leave them in their default position.
- Superb sound for budget speakers. Not only are there multiple ways to connect and their setup is super easy, you still get a quality sound profile from the BX4s. These aren’t your grandpa’s “champaign style, barely get the job done, tinny, twangin’ in your brain from being so harsh and overly high toned” speakers.
- Software included for music production. As with most audio equipment nowadays, there is pack-in software. Well, not technically but there is a way to unlock a download of a lite version of Avid ProTools with severely limited features, but is a great place for anyone to start to understand what a DAW is capable of with no prior experience.
- The M-Audio BX4s get pretty loud, but not as loud as some musicians may feel they need. I know I like to crank my mixes to the max but sometimes I feel like the highs get drowned out somewhat because of the extra heavy bass reflex these have. That’s not completely all bad because you still want strong powerful bass in your final mix but you have to take into consideration that what you hear may not be exactly what some other speakers may output.
- BX4s are not great for large open areas. As previously mentioned these are most likely best for smaller areas. As they do provide a clear sound that’s crisp and flat. They aren’t quite on the level of some larger speakers. I used them in a small bedroom for a while before moving them to the basement studio. I basically immediately took them right back upstairs. No matter how I adjusted the EQs on them, I just couldn’t fill the room the way I wanted to. The way a pair of eight-inch or larger monitors would do.
- These are not a suitable substitute for eight-inch to fifteen-inch monitors. As before, you might be able to simulate a set of larger speakers by using studio headphones, but you just can’t do that with small speakers no matter how hard you wish it were possible. There’s only so much a Four and a Half Inch Woofer can push.
- ProTools is the leading Digital Audio Software in the music industry. Its biggest problem is how expensive it is for a membership for the full version of the software. Unless you already have a business that makes money or you are currently on your way to acquiring financial compensation, it’s almost not worth it.
M-Audio BX4 120-Watt Powered Speakers
The amateur producer would have a heyday with these speakers. You just connect your interface, a microphone, and a midi controller or MPC, and boom, you’re ready to go. Alternatively, these are basically for anyone who could use a set of good solid multimedia speakers.
The best thing a new music producer can do is get the best equipment possible for your budget and skill. Obviously, you shouldn’t get the most expensive equipment at first but using the minimum is not only not recommended but is way harder to get the true sound you need when producing audio.
I wouldn’t use these for my living room surround sound system but for gaming, or streaming videos to a desktop PC is a much more elevated experience compared to the average little pack-in or built-in speakers you normally get.
M-Audio BX4 120-Watt Powered Speakers price
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My Final Opinion of
M-Audio BX4 120-Watt Powered Speakers
A set of M-Audio BX4s is a great replacement speaker for any pack-in set of PC speakers. They’re also great for listening to music or watching TV and movies. Another great use is music or audio production. Especially when you realize all of the many ways they can be utilized. You can even connect your phone or tablet in seconds.
With inputs on the front for connecting any device that has an auxiliary jack or adapter, and RCA and 1/4 inch inputs on the back for connecting to mixers or DJ controllers, these are great for a producer who needs options. You can hook it up to your computer interface to make beats or you can connect it to turntables, an MPC (drum machine), or any other DJ controller.
If you thought this article was helpful, have more questions, or noticed a mistake or typo, feel free to leave it in the comments below.