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The Yamaha HS Series speakers have established themselves as some of the most reliable, powerful, and honest monitors in the audio business, offering the cleanest and most precise sound for mixing. The HS7 is a 6.5″ model that was introduced later on as part of the second generation of the HS Series, providing the series with a wider range of speakers for different environments and spaces. Could it, however, rival its big brother, the HS8?
Upgrading your sound system with a pair of new speakers is always an exciting step for anyone looking for that extra bass or oomph. And the Yamaha HS7 and HS8 are both exceptional options to choose from if you want an authentic sound for your music productions or if you’re just a music enthusiast. But which one should you go for?
Before making that decision, you should always check your setting. Are you in a professional recording studio? An untreated small room or bedroom? A large room that requires a powerful set of speakers? Because a large room could make the HS7 sound like a toy. And the HS8 in a small room could make it sound like a nightmare. So the setting and the purpose of your purchase are the most important things to consider before choosing your perfect speaker.
Also Read: Yamaha Studio Monitors Review
Yamaha hs7 vs. hs8 – Comparison Table
|Product Name||YAMAHA HS7||YAMAHA HS8|
|Weight||18.1 lb.||22.5 lb.|
|Controls||Level Control (+4 dB/Center Click)EQ: High Trim Switch (+/- 2 dB @ HF)Room Control Switch (0, -2, -4 dB under 500 Hz)||Level Control (+4 dB/Center Click)EQ: High Trim Switch (+/- 2 dB @ HF)Room Control Switch (0, -2, -4 dB under 500 Hz)|
|Balanced Input||1x Balanced XLR3-31 Type1x 1/4″ (6.35 mm) Balanced TRS||1x Balanced XLR3-31 Type1x 1/4″ (6.35 mm) Balanced TRS|
|Frequency Response||43Hz – 30kHz||38Hz – 30kHz|
|Driver Technology||Low Frequency: 6.5″ ConeHigh Frequency: 1″ Dome||Low Frequency: 8″ ConeHigh Frequency: 1″ Dome|
|Driver Size||LF: 6.5″ Woofer ConeHF: 1″ Tweeter Dome||LF: 8″ Woofer ConeHF: 1″ Tweeter Dome|
1. Yamaha HS7
Sitting between its two siblings, the HS5 and HS8, the Yamaha HS7 is the best-selling speaker in the HS series. Due to its size, power, and frequency response, the HS7 is perfect for the bedroom producer or as a secondary monitoring system.
The Yamaha HS7 is a 2-way bass-reflex bi-amplified nearfield studio monitor designed for accurate sound reproduction and flat response. Its total output of 95 watts, 6.5″ cone woofer, and 1″ dome tweeter make it the perfect monitor for medium to large rooms.
Measuring 8.3” x 13.1” x 11.2″ and weighing 18.1 lbs. the HS7 is the ideal choice for anyone looking for a medium-sized monitor that will still deliver high-quality sound in space or rooms that are too small to handle the power of the HS8.
The HS7 features a balanced XLR and 1/4″ TRS input for a variety of studio setups. Level Control (+4 dB/Center Click), EQ: High Trim Switch (+/- 2 dB @ HF) and Room Control Switch (0, -2, -4 dB under 500 Hz) for more control of the low and high frequency responses.
Cabinet design and build
When you first look at the HS7, you will notice that it’s just an updated design of the iconic NS10. The speaker is housed in a bass-reflex cabinet made from resilient MDF (Medium-density fiberboard) with the use of the three-way mitered-joint technique to improve the durability of the monitor. The HS7 is available in both black and white.
The Yamaha HS7 is a bi-amplified monitor (“bi” meaning two separate amps for both the woofer and the tweeter) that ensures perfect sound reproduction across all frequency ranges. And is capable of up to 95W of total output (60W of low frequency and 35W of high frequency).
The perfect studio monitors should offer a flat and clean response, which is what the HS7 does best. A flat response is what you need for mixing music if you want to have excellent playback to all different systems. However, if you are mixing bass, the HS7 might not offer the best results, and you might want to purchase a subwoofer to achieve your desired sound. The HS7, however, will still give you an excellent performance.
With a frequency range of 43Hz – 30 kHz, the HS7 delivers a great low-frequency response. But it is not the ideal speaker for bass-heavy music, EDM, or Dubstep, as you will need a subwoofer to reach those very low frequencies. However, it offers a flat response, making the HS7 the perfect candidate for medium-sized spaces.
Price & Value for Money
The HS7 monitor is one of the best studio monitors in its price range. One speaker is currently priced at $329.99, and a pair will set you back $659.98. But is it worth it? We have to say yes if you’re working in an untreated or a medium-sized room. If you’re working in a larger space, you might need to spend some extra cash on a subwoofer or upgrade to an HS8, not an HS7.
Pros & Cons
The HS7 has a nice-looking compact design, is affordable, has a clean and accurate sound, good stereo imaging, and its average size is perfect for any setting.
The only disadvantage we’ve found with the HS7 is the bass response, as it does not go low enough, which makes it hard for producers working on heavy-bass music. The HS7 can perform well with a sub when needed but can also work pretty well without one.
The HS7 could also be slightly held down by its mediocre mid-range clarity, which creates a more two-dimensional soundstage.
2. Yamaha HS8
We’d like to think of the Yamaha HS8 monitor as the older, stronger sibling of the HS7. The difference between them is that the HS8 is bigger, more powerful, and designed for larger and acoustically treated rooms.
Same as the HS7, the HS8 is also a 2-way bass-reflex bi-amplified nearfield studio monitor designed to give you the most accurate sound and that extra deep bass that its younger brother might be lacking in. it has a total power output of 120 watts (75 watts coming from the woofer and 45 watts coming from the tweeter), with an 8″ cone woofer and a 1” dome tweeter making it a great monitor for larger rooms.
Measuring 21” x 16.2” x 14.3″ and weighing 28.8 lb. The HS8 is the perfect speaker for acoustically treated rooms and more strict professional production environments.
The HS8 features a balanced XLR3-31 type and one 1/4″ TRS phone jack that accommodate a wide range of balanced and unbalanced inputs such as keyboards, audio interfaces, and mixers.
It also features Room Control that lets it correct the unnatural low-end frequencies that we normally hear when speakers are placed next to walls. And High Trim gives you more control over the high frequencies.
The HS8 subwoofer features High Cut control that sets the cutoff frequency of subwoofer output high-frequency depletion and a Phase switch that adjusts the phase of the subwoofer output. Low frequencies between 80Hz and 120Hz can be suppressed using the Low Cut switch and controls.
(The HS8S subwoofer is also equipped with XLR and TRS phone jack inputs and XLR for L and R, and EXT SUB out for outputs.)
Read More: Best Studio Monitor Subwoofers
Cabinet design and build
The HS8, and the HS7 have identical designs and builds. The only difference is the size. The speaker is housed in a bass-reflex cabinet made from resilient and dense MDF (Medium-density fiberboard) with the use of the three-way mitered-joint technique to improve the durability of the monitor. The design of both the HS7 and HS8 was made utilizing Yamaha’s more than a century of piano design expertise.
The HS8 is available in both black and white.
The Yamaha HS8 is also a bi-amplified monitor (two separate and dedicated amps for both the woofer and the tweeter) that ensures perfect sound reproduction across all frequency ranges. The amplifier is capable of up to 120W of total output (75W of low frequency and 45W of high frequency).
Compared to the HS7, the HS8 monitor hits lower in the sound spectrum. It digs down to 38Hz, meaning it does a good job delivering deep and powerful bass. However, the bass is not exaggerated like in other speakers in its price range. It provides a perfectly clear and sharp sound and, most importantly, an accurate sound reproduction that will considerably help you in your mixes.
The HS8 has a frequency range of 38 Hz – 30,000 Hz, which is ideal for bass reproduction. It might not, however, be the perfect choice if the room you’re working in is somewhat small or medium, as that bass will most likely get distorted in a small space.
So bigger is not always better. Always check your space before getting excited and purchasing the HS8.
Price & Value for Money
Each speaker will set you back $398.99, meaning it will cost you $797.98 to equip your room with a pair. For this price range, we have to say that the HS8 is one of the best monitors on the market today. It is an excellent pick for recording studios and professional environments. And you’ll definitely get your money’s worth purchasing this speaker.
Pros & Cons
The Yamaha HS8 monitor delivers accurate, flat sound. Powerful bass. It’s perfect for mixing music. And you won’t need to purchase a subwoofer and spend that extra cash.
However, due to its size and power output of 120 watts, you will need a large room as the bass will sound boomy in small to medium-sized rooms. It is also more expensive than the HS7, but it’s definitely worth the investment.
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Similarities & Differences
- The HS7 and HS8 have identical subtle and sleek designs.
- Both speakers are housed in a bass-reflex cabinet made from resilient and dense MDF (Medium-density fiberboard) with the use of the three-way mitered-joint technique.
- Both speakers are available in black and white.
- Both have an active amplifier.
- Both speakers are very well engineered.
- Both have a balanced XLR3-31 type and one 1/4″ TRS phone jack.
- Both have the same controls. Level control (+4dB/center click), EQ: High Trim switch (+/- 2dB at HF) / Room Control switch (0/-2/-4 dB under 500Hz.)
- Both have the same 1-inch dome tweeter.
- Both have the same crossover of 2kHz.
- Sound-wise, they both deliver an accurate and flat sound.
- Relatively inexpensive compared to their competitors, with amazing sound quality for the price.
- The HS8 is slightly bigger than the HS7. Measuring 21” x 16.2” x 14.3″ instead of 8.3” x 13.1” x 11.2″.
- The HS8 is also heavier weighing 28.8 lb. instead of 18.1 lbs.
- The HS8 has a frequency range of 38Hz – 30 kHz. Unlike the HS7, which has a frequency range of 43Hz – 30 kHz, which means more bass for the HS8.
- The HS8 has an 8″ woofer cone, while the HS7 has a 6.5″ cone.
- The HS8 has an output power of 120W (LF: 75W, HF: 45W), while the HS7 has an output power of 95W (LF: 60W, HF: 35W)
- The power consumption of the HS8 is 60W, while the HS7 has a power consumption of 55W.
- Sound-wise, the HS8 is louder and delivers lower frequencies and deeper bass than the HS7, which makes it better for producing heavy-bass music genres like Dubstep, Hip Hop, and EDM, which might not sound deep and loud enough on the HS7. However, the HS7 is flatter than the HS8.
Yamaha HS7 vs. HS8 – Final Verdict
Which one should you choose?
Three things to consider before choosing your perfect speaker are: your setting, purpose, and budget.
If you’re planning on using your speaker in a small or medium-sized room, the HS8 will sound distorted, too loud, and boomy, especially if the room is acoustically untreated.
Will you be working on heavy-bass music? Or are you not producing or mixing anything and just buying it for pleasure? If you don’t need that slapping bass and deep lows, you might want to go for the HS7.
And finally, your budget. The HS8 is slightly more expensive than the HS7 but is it worth spending extra on the HS8? We definitely think so. The HS8 is one of the best monitors in that price range. So if you have the perfect space and budget, we encourage you to go for the HS8.
Read more: White Studio Monitors
The Yamaha HS7 and HS8 are both great high-quality monitors with exceptional sound accuracy and clarity. They both have a solid reputation in the audio industry and will not disappoint you. You just have to choose what works best for you and your space.
Is the Yamaha HS8 worth it?
Yes. If you’re still confused about spending more on the HS8, don’t be. The HS8 is a great investment for your audio setup. Not only is it durable and will last you a lifetime, but you won’t feel the need to buy another pair anytime soon due to the phenomenal and clear sound it delivers. So if you have the cash and working in –what’s considered- a perfect environment for the HS8, then go ahead and make that purchase.
Is the HS8 good for mixing?
Because both HS7 and HS8 offer a flat and accurate sound, both are great for mixing tracks. However, the HS8 will definitely work better in a professional recording studio due to its power and bass response. The final mix will also translate well to other audio systems, such as your car speakers, cellphone, headphones, etc., and give you honest feedback on your music on all systems.
Keep in mind that the HS8 is a very straightforward monitor, meaning that if your mix is terrible, you’re going to hear all those audio mistakes and imperfections very clearly and obnoxiously, so make sure you mix well before giving it the final test.
Which of the Yamaha HS7 and HS8 is more balanced?
There is no direct answer to this question. The Yamaha HS7 might sound flatter but lacks in the low-end frequencies. But you can always purchase a subwoofer to transform this duo into one perfect speaker that offers both great highs and lows.
The Yamaha HS8 also delivers an accurate response but might sound big and heavy (even distorted) in a small room. Each of these speakers has its advantages and disadvantages, but we found that most producers or music enthusiasts with this kind of budget are operating from a small to a medium-sized room. And the perfect studio monitor for that kind of environment is definitely the Yamaha HS7.