ATC Loudspeakers have a long history of developing innovative monitor technology. Founded by Billy Woodman in 1974, ATC started as a custom driver manufacturer and quickly made its mark with the 12-inch PA75-314 driver, known for its class-leading performance.
In 1976, they introduced their legendary SM 75-150s soft dome midrange driver, renowned for its precise imaging, extended frequency response and high-performance design. Over the next decade, as custom passive PA systems fell out of favor for smaller, all-inclusive monitoring systems, ATC began experimenting with active designs like the iconic SCM50 and SCM100 series.
During the mid-90s, ATC released its first standalone devices, the SCA2 pre-amplifier and the SPA2-150 power amplifier. That same year, Woodman developed ATC’s groundbreaking Super Linear (SL) driver technology, which greatly reduces harmonic distortion for improved clarity and detail.
With a such a historic reputation, it’s easy to see why ATC studio monitors are used in world-class recording studios and post-production facilities around the globe, like Abbey Road Studios, East West Studios and more.
In this Buyer’s Guide, we’ll talk about each of ATC’s studio monitors, from the massive SCM300ASL to the minuscule SCM12. We’ll break down the differences between each model to help you find the perfect set of ATC monitors for your studio.
Let's start with an in-depth conversation with Transaudio Group's Brad Lunde about everything ATC Loudspeakers.
All ATC studio monitors are equipped with state-of-the-art driver technology as part of their signature sound.
Super Linear Magnet Technology
Traditional driver designs are inherently non-linear due to “magnetic hysteresis,” which distorts the input signal and causes audible coloration. ATC’s super linear magnet design reduces third harmonic distortion by 10 - 15 dB between 100 Hz and 3 kHz for clearer, more detailed sound with minimal distortion.
Constrained Layer Damping
When constructing a bass driver, there are two basic approaches. A driver with high stiffness produces an extended frequency response when listening on-axis, but suffers from poor off-axis response and multiple resonances. A driver with high mechanical damping improves a cone’s resonant behavior, but reduces transient response and output level.
ATC’s innovative Constrained Layer Damping (CLD) design offers the best of both approaches. CLD drivers use revolutionary dampening technology to significantly reduce harmonic distortion, extend on-axis frequency response, and improve off-axis frequency response for a smooth, balanced sound no matter where you sit.
Dual Suspension Tweeter
ATC tweeters use a secondary suspension component to suppress rocking modes and ensure lower distortion levels. This additional stability also negates the need for ferro-fluid, resulting in more consistent performance over longer periods of time.
While the standard SH25-76 tweeter features a lighter moving mass bracing component, the ultimate ’S’ spec version has an exceptionally powerful motor assembly that delivers vanishing low distortion.
Soft Dome Mid-Range Driver
All of ATC’s three-way systems feature their original soft dome mid-range driver design from 1976. These drivers utilize a hyper-linear low distortion drive system to achieve low coloration, high power handling capacity and high output level. The dome diaphragm is made of soft woven fabric to attenuate unwanted resonances and deliver a silky-smooth response. Combined with a clever mounting design that eliminates phase issues, ATC midrange drivers deliver exceptional fidelity and neutrality.
ATC Far-Field STUDIO MONITORS
The SCM300ASL Pro is ATC’s flagship studio monitor, designed for larger control rooms, commercial studios and post-production facilities. This colossal dual 15 main monitor is equipped with an twin Super Linear ATC 15 inch bass drivers, a special ATC 3 inch Super Dome and an AUDAX FerroFluid cooled 1.25-inch Super High Power tweeter, for a balanced, even frequency response from 20 Hz to 20 kHz when mounted in a wall.
Each SCM300ASL is supplied with ATC’s own hand built P4 amplifier, Class A/B for best transient performance and fan cooled for long term reliability. The P4 delivers 275W of power to each of the two bass drivers, 200W to the ATC “Superdome” midrange and an additional 100W to the 1.25 inch AUDAX Ferro Fluid cooled tweeter for astoundingly clean high output levels up to 119 dB SPL. This is the far field “big” monitor you can mix with!
A more compact version of the SCM300ASL Pro, the SCM200ASL Pro main monitor features dual 12-inch Super Linear bass drivers for an extended bass response down to 32 Hz. With pristine sound in a compact format, the SCM200ASL Pro is ideal for professional music and film productions in mid to large-sized facilities.
The SCM110ASL Pro is a hybrid design featuring the best elements of the SCM300ASL Pro and SCM150ASL Pro. With dual 9-inch Super Linear bass drivers, a 3-inch Super Dome midrange driver and a 1-inch S-Spec tweeter, the SCM110ASL Pro delivers powerful low end down to 30 Hz and silky-smooth highs up to 22 kHz. It uses the same ATC 350W Tri-Amp Pack amplifier system as the SCM150ASL Pro for a max SPL of 115 dB.
ATC Mid-Field and Near-Field STUDIO MONITORS
Based on the design of the groundbreaking SCM300ASL Pro, the SCM150ASL Pro features a single 15-inch Super Linear bass driver, along with a 3-inch Super Dome midrange driver and a 1-inch S-Spec tweeter for an extended frequency response from 25 Hz to 22 kHz.
Equipped with an onboard ATC 350W Tri-Amp Pack amplifier, the SCM300ASL Pro provides 200W of power to the bass driver, 100W to the midrange driver and an additional 50W to the tweeter for class-leading output levels. The built-in LF contour control provides five bass boost settings, making it easy to dial in the right amount of low-end in any environment.
The SCM100ASL Pro is a more compact version of the SCM150ASL Pro for producers and engineers working in mid-sized studios. It features a single 12-inch Super Linear bass driver, a 3-inch Super Dome midrange driver and a 1-inch S-Spec tweeter for a frequency range of 32 Hz to 22 kHz. And with an ATC 350W Tri-Amp Pack amplifier system, it can deliver out levels up to 115 dB.
For engineers working in smaller facilities, the SCM50ASL Pro features a single 9-inch Super Linear bass driver for class-leading bass response down to 38Hz. And with an ATC 350W Tri-Amp Pack amplifier system, the SCM50ASL Pro delivers impressive output levels up to 112 dB SPL.
The SCM45A Pro is an active 3-way studio monitor with a unique horizontal design. Equipped with two of ATC’s 6.5-inch CLD bass drivers, a 3-inch Super Dome midrange driver, and a 1-inch S-Spec tweeter, the SCM45A Pro produces an impressive frequency response from 42 Hz up to 25 kHz.
With a high-performance tri-amped design, SCM45A Pro studio monitors are capable of reaching SPLs up to 112 dB. Six optimally-matched MOS-FET amp blocks pump out over 350 watts of power for crystal-clear distortion-free sound. With 150W powering the bass driver, 60W powering the Super Dome midrange driver, and an additional 25W for the S-Spec tweeter, SCM45A Pro studio monitors offer impressive headroom and class-leading transparency at any volume level.
With cutting-edge driver technology and class-leading amplification, the SCM45A Pro is perfectly suited for critical near-field listening or surround sound mixing in small to mid-sized environments.
The SCM25A Pro is a more compact version of the SCM45A with a single 7-inch CLD bass driver. Equipped with a 235W class A/B 3-way amplifier, these rack-mountable studio monitors are capable of reaching SPLs up to 109 dB.
The smallest of ATC’s active Super Linear studio monitors, the SCM20ASL Pro features a single 6-inch Super Linear bass driver and a 1-inch S-Spec tweeter for class-leading performance in a compact package. With a linear frequency response of 80 Hz to 20 kHz and a max SPL of 108 dB, the SCM20ASL Pro is perfect for critical near-field listening in small to mid-sized studios.
The SCM20PSL Pro is a passive version of the SCM20ASL Pro, designed for permanent installation in small to mid-sized facilities. SCM20PSL Pro studio monitors feature a high-performance passive crossover with 250Vdc metalized polypropylene capacitors and hand-wound air-cored type inductors for smooth transitions across all frequency ranges.
While SCM20PSL Pro studio monitors are designed to work with any traditional power amp, they perform best when paired with ATC’s 300 W per-channel P2 Pro dual-mono power amplifier. With class-leading power output and outstanding sonic resolution, ATC power amps deliver unparalleled performance.
The SCM12 Pro is ATC's most compact and affordable studio monitor, making it the ideal solution for producers, engineers, and musicians in small or home studios. Equipped with a 6-inch CLD mid/bass driver and a one-inch Dual Suspension tweeter, the SCM12 Pro delivers outstanding clarity and class-leading dynamic range. The SCM12 Pro also features ATC’s high-performance crossover and works best when paired with ATC’s 150 W per-channel P1 Pro dual-mono power amplifier.
SCM12i Pro Install
Identical to the best-selling SCM12 Pro, the SCM12i Pro Install is fitted with four M8 mounting points in the rear face for quick and easy permanent installation. Compatible with widely-available multi-mount pan and tilt mounting brackets, SCM12i can be safely and securely mounted to the ceiling and walls for advanced surround sound setups.
Optimally engineered to compliment ATC studio monitors, the SCM0.1/15SL Pro Sub is an active subwoofer with a unique downward-firing design. Equipped with a massive 15-inch Super Linear bass driver and a class-leading 650 watt Class A amplifier, the SCM0.1/15SL delivers rich, powerful low-end up to 118 dB SPL. Stereo XLR inputs and variable gain and frequency controls make the SCM0.1/15SL the ultimate subwoofer for professional music and film audio productions.
Intuitive bass management controls make it easy to quickly dial in the perfect sound using an amp gain control, a low-pass filter with selectable frequencies of 2K, 180Hz, 120, 90, 70, 50Hz. The SCM0.1/15SL also features a dedicated contour control, which introduces a small boost at 100 Hz.
Based on the design of the SCM0.1/15SL Pro, the SCM0.1/12SL Pro features a 12-inch Super Linear bass driver and a 450W amplifier, enabling distortion-free lows down to 18 Hz and as loud as 112 dB SPL.
ATC Power Amplifiers
The P2 Pro is ATC’s premier dual-mono power amplifier, capable of delivering up to 300 W of clean, clear power per channel. With a true dual-mono design, the P2 Pro delivers full power simultaneously from both channels with minimal crosstalk. The P2 uses the same grounded source class A/B circuit topology as ATC’s renowned active loudspeakers. With ultra-wide bandwidth, low distortion and high dynamic range, the P2 Pro delivers tonal accuracy and perfectly timed transients, making it a perfect match for the SCM20PSL Pro studio monitors.
With the same high-performance design as the P2 Pro, the P1 Pro delivers 150W of class-leading power per channel, making it the ideal amplifier for SCM12 Pro studio monitors.
Vintage King Installs ATC Loudspeakers At Blackbird Studio
One of our latest large-scale monitor installs recently took place at Blackbird Studio in Nashville, Tennessee. Blackbird transformed their already impressive C Room into mixing space for Dolby Atmos and worked with Vintage King to outfit the room with a large array of ATC Loudspeakers, including three SCM300ASL, 12 SCM100ASL, and six SCM0.1/15SL. Take a virtual walk through the studio below: