Advice on small active speakers

After a lot research (and some testing) I settled on the Kanto Yu6 for their multiple optical connections and phono in. Was also considering the HD6 but never go to audition them. Great range of connection of options on the YU6. It has taken them some time to break in, but once done the difference is noticeable. I have a smaller room, but the sound is very well rounded. Very happy with the purchase and would recommend to anyone looking for a sub-$500 powered speaker setup with a plethora of connectivity options.

Check out Emotiva’s Airmotiv 5s. I have a lot of Emotiva’s equipment and have always been impressed. Don’t have these but they have been praised in reviews. $499 direct from Emotiva.

My two cents… on a great pair of small professional active speakers for less than 500 USD.

You can check these reviews:

I’ve just bought here in Europe, from Thomann, a couple of Focal CMS40 and they’re great, monitoring speakers. You have both RCA and XLR connections, 60Hz-28kHz with a lovely midrange and mine are still not fully runned in.

They’re being discontinued as Focal just launched the new Shape 40, therefore you can have them at discounted price (244 USD/each).

Don’t go with the 50’s or 65’s as they’ve had reliability issues. As you budget improves you can add some isoacoustics stands, etc.

Thanks for this Juan.
These look really interesting. Reduced from £370 to £225 each in the U.K. So fall within budget. Few questions: these have to sit on the white gloss bookshelf in the bedroom. How are they from an aesthetic point of view in the flesh?
Secondly, I am concerned studio monitors may be too bight/clinical for relaxed late night listening? This may just be an uninformed prejudice on my part though. My source / pre amp will be rpi 3 ol allo boss running ropieee and Schiit Valhalla 2.

Other than the Focals, I am looking at q acoustics bt3 (only £170 new now), second hand avi dm5s (although I can’t register to the avi forums, the computer thinks I’m a spammer!), or ruark mr1 mk2 - but these only have a 3.5mm input, not phono. I am (again, likely unfairly) prejudiced against this!

Really appreciates everyone’s thought and inputs on this. The rpi/dac is such a natty solution as a kitchen/bedroom source, I imagine there must be a few Roon users going down the active speaker route.

Hi Max,
I can only speak of my experience, you have to make up your mind on your own to avoid blaming or regrets.
I love the unpretentious style of these two, I don’t know your decor, but I think they have a strong WAF appeal :wink:
They sound very natural, musical, neither bright nor clinical, although now I’m hearing sounds, voices and backstage detail, I didn’t know were in the recording with my old Presonus. Soundstage is also good. They are paired with Metrum Musette Dac that is also very musical. Be aware that good recordings will sound wonderful but lousy recordings will not be helped and sound hideous. I use mainly dbPoweramp ripped CD’s and Tidal lossless Flac’s.
You can add a Subwoofer if you want the lower octaves, I don’t think it’s necessary with the Isoacoustics stands.
Here s a picture, I’ve included a CD to give you some sort of proportion idea.
I was also considering the Genelec 8020D, they’re both made of solid aluminium to maximize space and reduce vibrations, these have 2x25W class AB amplifiers and Genelec class D.