The Monitor 5 are excellent entry level monitors, with a nice balance of lows, mids and highs for music production and even a little DJing.
Hercules is a company that’s mostly known for its DJ controllers and software. They offer quality entry-level products for those of us that want to get into DJing but don’t have the funds to heavily invest or are simply unsure of how serious they are about it. The Hercules Monitor 5 Studio Speakers are their first product targeted at the vibrant home studio monitor market and a worthy competitor the one other entry-level studio monitors that has been the best choice for bedroom producer for years – the KRK Rockit RP5. – they even come in around the same affordable price of $300 for the pair.
Hercules Monitor 5 Specifications
Both speakers are identical – they feature the same handy power switch and volume control on the front panel and give you some basic bass and treble controls on the back to help dial in the sound that fits your room best. It’s a small thing, but I think the front facing power switch is one of my favourite features on these because it saves me from reaching far over my desk to reach the back panel of my current monitor speakers. The devil is in the details, especially if you are in a tight space like most home studio owners are.
In terms of inputs, you have three options: RCA, balanced quarter-inch, and XLR. No surprises here, just everything you need and not more. As the name suggests the Monitor 5 comes equipped with a 5″ woofer as well as a 1″ tweeter. Something to consider is the heft and size of these monitors. They are not enormous, but especially if these are your first for studio monitors be aware that these weigh 15 lbs and are 12″ x 8.7″ x 9.2″. If you plan to just put them on your desk, they might seriously limit your available desk space. I strongly suggest some speaker stand – these also help with improved isolation. I recently installed two stand to my desk to raise my monitors and recover valuable space for placing essential gear within reach.
The looks of the Hercules Monitor 5 Studio Speakers are very reminiscent of the KRK’s with their black casing and yellow woofer. Perfomancewise the woofers get 50 watts while the tweeter gets 30 watts, enough for any moderately sized home studio. They have enough power function to work for both your DJ or studio monitoring needs. But remember these are entry level monitor speakers, so don’t expect wall shaking bass – they are meant for small spaces not throwing a backyard party.
Here’s a full list of the technical features
5 inch woofers.
Balanced dual bass ports.
Speaker enclosures crafted of high-density MDF.
80 watts RMS output power per speaker.
RCA, TRS (6.35 mm) and XLR inputs.
Compact design, perfect for any space.
On/Off switch on front of each speaker for easy access.
Master volume knob on front of each speaker for more precise control.
Indicator light in ON position.
High-frequency adjustment: + or – 2 dB.
Low-frequency adjustment: + or – 2 dB.
Adjustable low-frequency cutoff: 56 Hz, 80 Hz or 100 Hz.
But how good do they really sound?
We tested these, running Ableton Live 10 on a Macbook with our Cranborne 500R8 audio interface. Compared to higher priced monitor speakers, we noticed that the bass isn’t as fill as we would have liked. Especially when listening to hip hop or trap this ia bit of bummer. If you want to use them as DJ monitors or just music listening speakers, I would suggest something which has more bottom.
On the other hand Monitor 5 seem to excel in the mids and highs, when you compare them with others at this price point. So for genres like ambient, jazz, etc they are a sure bet. Also don’t forget that studio monitors actually shouldn’t be overly pronounced in bass. You want these for being able to accurately mix your beats!
Verdict: Should you get the Hercules Monitor 5 Studio Speakers?
If you are into production and want something that can elevate your mixes, the Hercules Monitor 5 Studio Speakers are an excellent starting point and we would easily recommend them over the bedroom producer favourites from Rokit any day! They are the perfect choice for aspiring bedroom producers – you can turn them up loud enough to annoy your roommates, but you won’t run into problems with your neighborhood.
You get a solid pair of monitors which are flexible enough to fulfil all your needs when it comes to production, mixing and DJing. If you are starting out in music production, these are the way to go!