The Top 10 Stage Monitors Reviewed
If you want to save money and already have an amplifier you may only need a passive stage monitor, but if you want an all in one, choose from one of the powered amplifiers below. A passive monitor will come in with a lower price but will require a possibly heavy and bulky making another item you need to carry or set up on the stage. Though, if a passive monitor fails, you don’t have to replace the set, which is why it’s often the preferred choice for venues with already installed sound systems.
Powered stage monitors do not require external amplification as it’s in the box. With less to carry and install, this might be the better option for musicians who need to set up their own sound. Though, you will pay more for a powered monitor you will still save money on buying the two items separately.
From powered, unpowered, wedges, and more you can find the best options right here without searching the web high and low. We did all the work for you to save you both time and money.
Best Stage Monitors
With Alto Professional Loudspeakers, you get a choice of several sizes depending on your needs. Pick from an 8-inch, 10-inch, 12-inch, or 15-inch depending on how much sound you need and how much you want to carry. The sleek black box comes an easy to carry handle to move from one stage to the next or your car.
The powered speaker offers superior sound with 600 watts peak and 300 watts of continuous Class D power with a newly designed horn for coverage of ninety degrees by sixty degrees. With a driving bass, you will get pristine highs thanks to 15 inch LF drivers, a 2-inch voice coil, and a 1-inch neodymium HF compression driver.
Setup is easy as possible with the lightweight at 37.2 pounds loudspeaker. It’s your choice whether you want it hooked up on top of a pole or used as a wedge monitor. Connect to your devices with a balanced XLR Mic/Line input, a link output, and volume control. It uses an integrated analog limiter and an overload protection circuitry to keep your box working.
Finally, the box was made right here on American soil to help musicians carry their sound to the ears of their audience. The product measures 24.7 x 14.6 x 15.2 inches. Note, though, it does not offer Bluetooth though you can use a microphone, guitar, piano, drums, and so much more as long as you have an outlet connection as this device does not use a battery for power.
- Superior Sound – 600 Watts peak, (300 Watts continuous Class D power); newly designed horn delivers extemporary coverage 90° H x 60° V
- Driving Bass, Pristine Highs - 15-inch (381 mm) LF driver, 2-inch (50.8 mm) voice coil; 1-inch (25.4 mm) neodymium HF compression driver
- Setup Simplified - Lightweight, cabinet design for easy transport, set up and installation; Suitable for pole-mounting or use as a wedge monitor
- Connectivity Covered - Balanced XLR Mic/Line input, Link Output and Volume control; integrated analogue limiter and overload protection circuitry
- Precision Engineered - Designed and tuned in the USA
For those looking for a passive stage monitor, you will want to look first at the JBL PRX415M, but remember to use an amplifier as this does not come with one. If you already have a sound system in place, this portable option may suit your needs, especially as you can choose from 12-inch or15-inch in either black or white. They also make a powered version if you don’t have an amp and don’t mind a massive price increase.
The high-quality speaker provides a speaker system with multi-purposes and sure to meet your needs. With 90 degrees by 50 degrees coverage, you get even and smooth sound on or off-axis for quality performance. It includes NL-2 and 1/4-inch phone combination connection jacks and a passive network for accurate reproduction even in cross-over regions. Includes 300 watts of continuous, 600 watts program, and 1200 watts peak sound.
All this and it’s still lightweight at 46 pounds in the 15-inch size, which is heavy but manageable and includes rubber-coated carrying handles to make carrying a little easier. The monitor measures 23 x 22 x 28.5 inches, enough to be heard but not in the way or combine with multiple speakers. Includes a frequency range of 55 Hz-19 kHz and a frequency response of 66 Hz-16 kHz
Lastly, a 16-gauge grill covers the speaker for protection and integrity. It includes dual-angle pole mount sockets to stand. You can also lay it on the side like a wedge or mount permanently for long term use. Do note, it’s not Blue-tooth enabled but has Wi-Fi with an app, but it’s not always easy to use in this capacity.
- High-quality multi-purpose speaker system: provide main sound reinforcement or stage/studio monitoring, and pair with a JBL PRX418S or PRX425 subwoofer for optimal performance
- 90 Degree x 50 Degree coverage provides even and smooth response on and off axis for optimal sound performance
- NL-2 and 1/4" phone combo connection jacks, and a passive network provides accurate reproduction throughout the cross-over region
- Power rating: 300W continuous, 600W program, and 1200W peak
- Lightweight and compact with rubber-coated carrying handles for maximum portability
Now, if you are looking for a high-end self-powered system speaker and don’t mind paying a lot of money for a good monitor, look no further than the JBL SRX835P. It’s the same brand as the speaker above but with a 15-inch three-way, though you can also pick a 12 or 15-inch two way and passive if you already have an amplifier. The great thing about this speaker is rugged durability and massive sound, and yet it’s still portable.
You can use this monitor as a main PA speaker or on the floor in a wedge for optimal sound coverage. It uses an Ether-con connectivity to provide full HiQnet networkability for more tunability, so you don’t have to compromise sound to get an active loudspeaker. Three-inch drivers sit inside the cabinet that was produced to create sonic balance and clarity with 2000-watts of power.
It also comes with two inputs channels featuring a XLR/1/4″ combo jacks and individual XLR direct out. An XLR mix output allows for convenient daisy-chaining to other speakers. You can mount on a pole, stack on top of others, or use flyable options. Furthermore, it has a frequency response of 41 Hz to 20 Hz, and a max of 137 dB with power handling of 2,000-watts peak or 1,500-watts continuous for a coverage pattern of 60 degrees by 40 degrees.
Lastly, this item only measures about 18.7 x 21.4 x 38.7 inches but packs in a hefty 85 pounds of weight! It’s one of the loudest options on the list and comes from a formidable brand with a sleek design. Though they do not come with Bluetooth unless you have a connected device. The only real problem is you will need more than one to cover a medium party-sized room, and the price is quite high.
- Purposeful Design: Rugged, Intuitive to Use, Easy to Transport
- JBL Premium Transducers
- Drive core Amplification By Crown
- Full User Configurable DSP
- Network Control.Amplifier Design:Class D
If you are looking for a gorgeous set of speakers to serve as stage monitors, try the Grindhouse Passive Speakers in wedge form. With chrome bumpers and a thick checkered cover, these monitors belong at a rock concert to provide impressive sound for your guitar and voice. The set comes with two passive wedge floor monitors for surround sound at 300 watts RMS each with 600 watts peak each.
The 10-inch speakers come in at an exceptionally low price, but you will need to add in an amplifier, so it may be best to use if you already have a sound system in place and simply want to improve the range of sound. They include an impedance of 8 Ohms and 75-watt wide dispersion horn tweeter and work well for PA monitors, DJ monitors, live sound, or karaoke. These also offer 45 Hz to 20 kHz of frequency response and 95 dB of sensitivity.
Each monitor weighs a low 21 pounds and measures 18.5 x 12.5 x 12, so they won’t take up a lot of space but will give you all the sound you need. Each speaker has a dual 1/4″ jack plate, a set of red and black push lock terminals, for raw speaker wire. Use any of the jacks for input, and once connected, the other jacks become useful for output if you need to daisy chain. All this with a price so low you might do a double-take but note that these come with absolutely know no customer complaints making them a perfect option for passive stage monitors.
- Model: GH10M-Pair
- Contents: Pair of 10 Inch Wedge Floor Monitors
- Active / Passive: Passive
- Power Rating: 300 Watts RMS | 600 Watts Peak each
- Impedance: 8 Ohms
Yamaha offers the DBR10 700-Watt powered speakers. The bi-amped speakers come in 10-inch, 12-inch, and 15-inch sizes to meet your needs and get the sound you want. Though, what you will really love about these speakers is because of the 7-year warranty because who doesn’t love a long-term guarantee on an expensive item?
Another great feature we haven’t seen in the monitors above is a clean digital power in the 700-watt speakers with 129 dB SPL. Add in FIR-X tuning and frequency range (-10 decibel)-55Hertz – 20 kiloHertz. The DBR’s lightweight, high-performance Class-D amplifier can deliver impeccable clarity. These speakers come with two input channels, the CH1 has a combo jack for both XLR and TRS phone for a mic or line-level input signal. A CH2 has two input options, a combo jack for XLR or TRS phone and an RCA pin jack for input from CD players or stereo from an onboard mixer.
Add in some rigging points for installation, and you have some seriously useful speakers. The M8 rigging threads allow you to rig-up the speakers with optional brakes or standardized eye-bolts (note these are not included). If you don’t want to hang them, you can carry it using the built-in handle for compact, lightweight carry in a durable plastic cabinet. A sleek steel grille adds protection for internal components. Finally, these are best for smaller shows as they provide sound but could stand to be a little louder.
- Bi-Amped, 10" Powered Speaker
- High Performance Main or Monitor Speaker
- 7-Year Warranty
- 700 Watts of Clean Digital Power, 129 dB SPL
- FIR-X Tuning and Frequency range (-10 decibel)-55Hertz – 20 kilo Hertz
The QSC Powered Loudspeaker offers a lot of value but a hefty price tag. If you don’t mind adding to the price, you can purchase a cover for outdoor use, a tote bag, and a yoke mount kit to help increase the usefulness and protection of your stage monitor. What you get is the best in class audio performance from an extremely portable 8-inch speaker with an outstanding 2000 Watt Class-D amplifier module.
The panel on the back comes with a host of factory presets and savable/recallable scenes for common application you will use. A digital display allows for easy control of all of the functions on the loudspeaker. It also uses intrinsic correction tuning and loudspeaker management, all with a 6-year warranty if you remember to register your product. All these features help to make this amplified speaker the perfect option for musicians, bands, DJs, entertainers, churches, and more.
Each 2000-watt power module works with the woofers and compression drives using a DMT (Directivity-Matched Transition) for smooth sound coverage. An advanced DSP provides voice correcting to help improve your performance for your listener. Use the unit as either a main PA or as a floor monitor on the wall, mounted, poled, or straight on the floor with 7.5-degree down-tilt.
Finally, the unit weighs 31.8 pounds and measures 20 x 15 x 15 inches to make it small enough to fit where you need. A few customers complained about the tote bag but had no issues with the speakers. The sleek design will work with any decor.
- Best in class audio performance
- 2000 Watt Class-D amplifier module
- Factory Presets and savable/recallable Scenes for commonly-used applications
- Multi-function digital display for control and selection of loudspeaker functions
- Intrinsic Correction tuning and loudspeaker management
How would you feel about a pair of powered stage monitors in a wedge style to surround your stage? Seismic Audio provides just such a pair and for a very reasonable price considering you get two stage monitors in one. They look just like the ones you see at all your favorite concerts with large metal grilles and titanium horns in a thick wedge style for full sound throughout your space.
The powered 2-way 15-inch stage monitors can work as both powered or active to suit your needs. Whether you want to use them as PA floor monitors, for live, stage, or studio sound, you can make these work for you with ease. The woofer includes 50-ounce magnets and 2.5-inch voice coils. Each speaker includes 350 watts RMS with a 700-watt peak and a frequency response of 35 Hz – 20k Hz, a sensitivity of 97 dB, and a nominal impedance of 8 Ohms.
For connectors, you get two line input/outputs, an XLR female/male, and a 3.5 mm input for electronic devices like iPhones. Carry it around with ease thanks to a discreetly recessed handle and the black carpet covering around the base. Do note that these speakers do not pole mount, which would be a pain as they weight just shy of 46 pounds and measure 19 x 20 x 24. They are definitely better on the floor and for daisy-chaining and no reported issues from customers!
- MODEL: SA-15MT-PW (Pair)
- CONTENTS: Powered 2-Way 15inch Wedge Floor/Stage Monitors
- CONDITION: New
- APPLICATION : PA Floor Monitor / Live Sound / Stage / Studio
- ACTIVE/PASSIVE: Powered / Active
If you only need one studio monitor and a small one at that, try the Kali Audio LP-8 Monitor. You can pick from two sizes, either 6.5-inch or 8-inch, and also between black or white. Do notice, this monitor does not have a grille covering all the internal parts. If you plan on moving your monitor around a lot, then you may want to consider a different option as this one is more likely to get damaged, but man, it looks superb!
What it does offer is 3D imaging waveguide for a 3D soundstage from a pair of stereo speakers. A low-noise port tube allows for a clean, bass sound without a whole lot of disturbing sounds to distort your music or voice. It also puts out a high output with 85 dB of continuous output at around six feet, so it’s loud enough for a small room but not meant for a mega stage by any means. If you need sound for a home studio, editing bays, or a control room, this is the right option for you.
It also delivers bass power with a larger magnet and voice coil than others on the market, so you get more accurate bass response with lower ranges around the room for accuracy in low-end sound. A signature Boundary EQ setting helps to reach optimal sound even in recording environments without worrying about neutral sonic production. The whole unit measures 19.5 x 14 x 12.6 inches and weighs just 25.6 pounds for easy carry and mounting. Play with the settings if you have an issue, but most customers love the sound from this tiny little box.
- 3D IMAGING WAVEGUIDE: The 3-D Imaging Waveguide allows you to hear a 3-D soundstage from a stereo pair of speakers.
- LOW-NOISE PORT TUBE: The LP-8 has the clean, punchy bass of a front-ported speaker with very low noise from the port tube.
- HIGH OUTPUT: With 85 dB continuous output at 2.8 meters (roughly 6 feet,) and 20 dB of headroom, the LP-8 is plenty loud for almost every 1 or 2 person listening space. This includes home studios, editing bays, and most control rooms.
- BASS POWER: Bass on the LP-8 is delivered by a larger magnet and larger voice coil than any comparable speaker on the market. This gives you more accurate bass response that extends lower, so you can dial in exactly the low-end sound you need.
- BOUNDARY EQ: Kali Audio’s signature Boundary EQ settings help you achieve optimum sound in your recording environment while maintaining neutral sonic reproduction in a variety of settings.
Electro-Voice makes the powered 2-way loudspeaker along with several other options to meet your needs, all for a respectable price. With 1000 watts of full-range power, you know you will have plenty of sound to power your music. Using 15-inch woofers and a 1.5-inch high-frequency titanium compression driver, you get a whole lot of power in one black box.
An LCD display on the back pairs with a unique single-knob DSP control with presets so you can optimize your loudspeaker to suit your needs fast. It also includes a custom-built 1000W Class-D amplifier for quality sound. It weighs only 38 pounds thanks to a super-durable composite construction and a unique hi/lo grip design. A patented split-baffle design allows for optimal superior driver time alignment and enhanced sonic impact and intelligibility.
Mount to pole or use as a wedge for maximum options. Use the handle to move around as needed. It measures 29.1 x 18.7 x 18.6 inches. It does not have Blue-tooth capabilities. A few customers received faulty units, and the device failed on them after only a few months, which can cause problems as it’s a bit pricy and non-returnable. However, the vast majority of customers love the loudspeaker with few except. It does work best in smaller spaces as the sound can drop off after several feet.
- 15 inch woofer and 1.5 inch high-frequency titanium compression driver
- LCD display and unique single-knob DSP control with presets – quickly optimize ZLX to suit your perf
- Custom-built 1000-W Class-D amplifier for best-in-class sound
- Lightweight, 38 lbs, super-durable composite construction and unique hi/lo grip design for effortles
- Patented split-baffle design for superior driver time alignment and enhanced sonic impact and intell
The last stage monitor on the list comes from Rockville with a surprisingly low price and a few different options. You can pick from 12-inch or 15-inch and either passive or active, though we are going to talk about the 12-inch active monitor here. Rockville’s RSM12A offers a 12-inch 1000-watt 2-way power Active stage monitor.
It offers a high power 12-inch woofer with a 2 5-inch KS voice coils for deep bass and acoustic power. It has a microphone line selectable input for flexibility to use with a mixer signal, microphone, keyboard, or a guitar. Setup multiple speakers with the link out connection via combo balanced XLR – ¼ “TRS preamp output. It also includes LED power and clipping LED indicators.
The speaker has a frequency response of 45 Hz – 20 kHz with a maximum of 93 dB peak. The wedge design allows for angled stage monitoring use, and it’s lightweight and compact with an ergonomic handle. Though it’s quite heavy at just over 56 pounds and it measures 19.5 x 19 x 28, and with such a low price, you will be able to get more than one! Also, the size of the unit surprised customers.
- Rockville RSM12A 12" 1000 watt 2-way powered Active stage floor monitor speaker. 250 Watt RMS/500 watts Program power/1000 Watts Peak
- High power 12" woofer with 2. 5" KS voice coil provides incredibly deep bass and acoustic power. A microphone/line selectable input gives you the flexibility of plugging in a mixer signal, microphone, keyboard, or your guitar
- Link out connection via combo balanced XLR - ¼ " TRS preamp output for multi speaker setup. Led power and clipping LED indicators. Frequency response: 45hz-20khz. Maximum SPL @1W/1M: 93dB peak
- High-power 2-way Pro sound stage monitor speaker system for live sound and playback applications. Wedge shaped enclosure provides the perfect angle for stage monitoring use
- Compact and light weight system delivers distortion free sound even at extreme SPL. Great power to weight ratio. Linear Class AB amplifier technology: High power, transparent sonic performance
Questions About the Best Stage Monitors
How can stage monitors improve my sound?
Stage monitors help you to block out feedback from offstage so you can hear what you are doing. A stage monitor offers you the ability to hear a balanced mix of the song play, and make adjustments to sound the way you need. Sound can make all the difference, and a stage monitor can give you the right sound where you need and when you need for optimal performance.
Will I need more than one stage monitor?
This depends on your needs and the size of your space. If you only need to fill up a small room, then you may only need an 8-inch monitor. If you are trying to fill a concert hall, you are about to go broke filling the space!!! The best thing to do is measure the space and decide from there how many you will need to fill the space with sound.
Should I get a passive or an active monitor?
If you have a sound system, including an amplifier already, then you only need a passive stage monitor. If, however, you do not have an amplifier, then you will do better with an active monitor as it includes an amp. If your music takes you on the road often, then you will want an active monitor because it’s less to carry and less to set up once you reach your destination.
Where to place stage monitors
The ideal spot to place stage monitors is on the front of the stage, just slightly off to the left and right of the mic. This video does a good job of explaining this positioning:
Final Thoughts About the Best Stage Monitors
The best stage monitor offers multiple ways to display the monitor, a sturdy grille. They should also have a handle, and a reasonable weight almost anyone can carry for a respectable price. If you want your choices down to one option, pick the Electro-Voice ZLX15P 15″ 2-Way 1000W Full Range Powered Loudspeaker as it offers quality sound and all of the other features you can possibly want for a mid-range price.