MR4 Powered Studio Monitor Speakers
The Edifier MR4 Powered Studio Monitors are an affordable option for clear, crisp audio. They do not have wireless capabilities which might be detrimental to some users, but they seem to provide clean audio output. The speakers are easy to use and install and they have a clean design that will work with any decor.
- EASE OF USE
- SOUND QUALITY
MR4 speakers are an affordable, quality option for standard use.
There are a few reasons why someone might want to invest in a pair of studio monitor speakers. Firstly, studio monitors are designed to produce a very accurate sound reproduction, which is essential for mixing and mastering music. Secondly, they are typically much more powerful than regular home speakers, so they can create a louder, more immersive listening experience. Finally, studio monitor speakers usually come with a variety of input and output options, making them very versatile and easy to integrate into any audio setup.
Even though I will often use headphones as my main source of audio output, I do like to invest in a good set of external speakers for my workstation. Over the years, I’ve gone through several different sets of speakers and have found that mid-size shelf speakers — like the Edifier MR4 Powered Studio Monitors — are the ideal option for me. I’ve tried the base model computer speakers that are honestly just a step above built-in speakers and given the size of my workspace and my personal/professional needs, smaller studio monitors work best for me. The Edifier MR4 Powered Studio Monitor speakers are very affordable and incredibly easy to set up.
About MR4 Powered Studio Monitor
The MR4 Powered Studio Monitors are designed to be integrated into a workstation and used for professional audio production. The speakers have a 4-inch woofer and a Class-D amplifier. There are trimmer knobs on the back of the right speaker that allows users to control the low and high frequencies. These monitors have built-in 6.35mm TRS balanced input jacks for direct connection to consoles, mixers, or other equipment.
According to the information on the product found on edifier.com, “the MR4 adopts TI high-quality ADC (analog-to-digital converter) chipset, SNR up to 99dB, with TI digital power amplifier TAS5713, and the use of its built-in DSP to complete sound adjustment, to ensure excellent performance under dual mode.” The materials used to build the speaker boxes (MDF) help to reduce resonance and rendering effects so that what you hear is a more natural tone.
- Smooth frequency response for great audio reference
- 1-inch silk dome tweeter and 4-inch diaphragm woofers deliver pure sound
- MDF wooden cabinets minimize acoustic resonance
- Simple connection to mixers, audio interfaces, computers, or media players
- Front-mounted headphone output and AUX input for convenience
- Multi-functional knob for power, volume, and sound effects toggle
- Monitor and music modes to fit various scenarios
- Available in Black or White
- Power output (RMS): 21W+21W
- Frequency response: 60Hz-20kHz
- Audio inputs: TRS balanced input, RCA unbalanced input, AUX unbalanced input
- Input sensitivity: TRS balanced input: +4dBu, RCA/AUX unbalanced input:-10dBV
- Signal-noise ratio: ≥85dB(A)
- THD+N(%): ≤0.2%
Pricing & Availability
The Edifier MR4 Powered Studio Monitor speakers come in a brown cardboard box. The name of the product is included, but it’s not really a retail shelf-style box. It’s more of what I would call a ‘warehouse’ box. The speakers are wrapped in plastic and housed inside some styrofoam inserts for safety. The speakers are packaged with a speaker cable that connects the two monitors together, a 3.5mm RCA audio cable, a 3.5mm to 3.5mm audio cable, and a user manual. The power cable is built-in to the right speaker, which is also where all the other ports are located.
The speakers are built well. They have a simple, clean style to them. The controls are on the right speaker along with all the input/output ports. There is a volume/power button knob on the speaker, which I usually keep around 50%. There is also an Aux port and headphone port on the front of the right speaker. This makes it very easy to connect external devices to the speakers. You do have the option of plugging professional audio equipment into the speakers, as well. In my use case, I just had the speakers connected to my computer using the Aux port.
The MR4 Powered Studio Monitor speakers are very easy to set up. You plug them into power, connect the speaker wire between the two speakers, and then connect your input source. That’s it. These speakers do not have built-in wireless compatibility, which is a downside to me since I like to connect my phone and iPad to my workstation speakers. That said, if someone planned on these for only hardwired purposes, then you can do without the wireless connectivity.
How do they sound?
I would rate the sound quality around 7.5/10. The quality of the sound is clear and crisp. I try to keep the volume setting at a moderate level. As I mentioned, the volume knob on the speakers is set to 50%. I also have my computer set to 50% and the Music app on my MacBook Air set to 50%. This provides a moderate level volume-wise and allows music to be heard at a comfortable level. I never noticed audio breaking up at that level. I do want to state here that I have experience as a professional audio/video editor and I would use these for most tasks but probably not for audio mixing — especially when there are several audio layers.
When I really got into testing the speakers, I did turn the volume knob up to 100% and noticed a fair amount of static/white noise coming through them when no music was playing, but the audio that was playing did not suffer any quality loss that I could tell. I’m not sure if I would consider these speakers full-fledged studio monitors, but they would be good for home studio setups and they are definitely a step up from standard computer speakers. For the $130 list price they are currently sold for (as of publishing this article), these speakers provide a good option for users to add a clean sound to their workstations.
In addition to music, I also watched some videos with dialogue mixed with music. Most movie and TV soundtracks end up sounding flattened rather than maintaining their complex layers of sound effects, music, and dialogue. One movie I always have trouble with is Sex in the City: The Movie. The opening credits sequence plays over the top of a loud music track and it always tends to overtake the dialogue. Listening to the movie through the MR4s was actually pretty refreshing because I could hear the dialogue much better than I typically can. The speakers handled directional audio well, too.
Another movie I tested the speakers with was Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol 2. The opening sequence of that movie is incredibly complex. Again, the surround sound directional audio was handled well and none of the audio seemed muddied. I will say that you lose some of the ‘boom’ that you might get from a subwoofer, but that wasn’t an issue exclusive to this movie test. I felt that bass depth was missing with all audio played through these speakers.
The Edifier MR4 speakers offer users a premium audio experience at an affordable price. They are easy to use and provide great value. The speakers have a classic style that works with any decor and because they come in white or black finishes they will fit with any workspace.