The Fostex PX-6 appeared around this time last year as an upgrade to the PX-5. Monitors have turned into one of the studio’s most essential pieces of gear, and the PX-6 meets this need, especially in the under-$1,000 price range, with a sturdy design, simple functionality, clear and exact reproduction, and features that exceed its predecessor’s.
As a professional-quality monitor, the FX-6 features completely new 6.5” LF and 1” HF drivers and a top-notch digital FIR filter that goes beyond the competition with excellent reproduction and sonic performance. Added to the new array of feature is Active Phase Optimization, which lets the user adjust the monitor by 9 degrees up to 180 degrees. What results is extremely accurate settings in a multi-channel monitoring environment.
Beyond these aspects, the design of the PX-6 is very straightforward. You’ve got a 50W (LF)/28W (HF) digital amplifier, a 6.5” crimson woofer, a 1” urethane film laminated polyester fiber dome tweeter, a Digital Network Filter (FIR Type) for dividing the network, and a unique rotary encoder (functions as both a knob and a button) and LED indicator, and a fade-in function to gradually increase the output level.
Out of these features, the 6.5” crimson woofer is made out of aramid fiber with a mixed diaphragm impregnated with resin, which improves fiber bonding for better rigidity. The 1” urethane tweeter, a polyester fiber dome, is tuned with the back of the monitor’s chamber for smoother, higher-frequency sounds. The Digital Network Filter, additionally, helps with getting accurate time alignment for improved sound positioning.
Along with these features, the monitors offer a strong, clean design weighing just a bit over 15 pounds and measuring 13.2” by 8.2” by 10”. The body offers a two-way bass reflex unit enclosure and has an XLR-3-31 balanced connector and an unbalanced RCA connector.
As far as usage is concerned, the monitor comes equipped with a 44-step level control for volume and trim adjustments, and has a +/- 3dB per 0.3dB step HF level control and a +/- 20 step LF roll frequency adjustment. While the power button is still in the back, an inconvenience for some, the monitor offers auto standby and auto operation functions for conserving power. Tuned ports on the front have been known to give a frequency response below 48 Hz to 20 kHz.
Overall, compared to past Fostex products, the PX-6 is a significant upgrade in terms of usage and sound quality. It runs fairly quietly, while the selector switch and encoder knob pretty much put everything right at your fingertips. With these features, you’ll be able to control the volume, HF Boost and cut, BLF roll off, HPF with the subwoofer, and coarse and fine phase adjustments, and once you’re done, the knobs work to save your current settings – especially convenient if you’re planning to come back to the mix at a later date. The LED light lets you know which setting the encoder is currently adjusting.
Usage, too, is simple. With the switch, select “Level” for the volume and “Tone” for adjusting the bass and treble. After you’ve reached the desired settings, press it a second time to save it.
In the studio, too, you really can’t get anything better, especially for the price and size. The sound reproduction is one of the best around, with nearly nonexistent distortion. With your mix, what you hear ends up being clear and accurate overall, with strong high-end definition and exact, pure mid-range tones. Individual instruments stand out, and after you’ve completed your mix, hearing it with other systems doesn’t bring out any surprises. Essentially, what you hear through these monitors will be what you’ll get in any other setting. As well, the sound’s strong and exact enough that you can use this monitor with or without a subwoofer.
Ultimately, if you’re in the market for a new monitor, either you want a functional or a sonic upgrade, the PX-6 is the way to go in the present. You get excellent quality for the price, and for the fairly portable size, you’ll be able to take this precision wherever you go. When you want to stop guessing about the quality of your mix, or, worse, find out it’s not up to par when it’s too late, PX-6 provides the precision you seek.
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