As new players in the studio monitor game, Brooklyn-based Ex Machina has made waves by making some staggering choices with its designs. The brand has come out swinging for the fences and, after listening to these three current releases, it's obvious these decisions have worked for the best.
The brand made its big debut at NAMM 2020 with three monitor offerings for different sized studio spaces. Continue on in this Buyer's Guide to learn more about the brand's technology and these ultra-clear, transparent and focused studio monitors.
Ex Machina Monitor Technology
For its monitors, Ex Machina uses a high-performance composite wood called Valchromat to build sealed cabinets that are acoustically inert. This material provides for weighty cabinets that are stiff and dampen any vibrations, ensuring that the cabinet remains dead and doesn't change the sound of your audio coming out.
Many of the same characteristics of a cabinet are also desired in the design of a midrange diaphragm. Ex Machina uses a woven thin-ply carbon fiber material called Textreme that is stiff and well-damped, but also extremely light. This ideal stiffness to weight ratio is what makes the midrange of Ex Machina monitors shine.
When it comes to the design of its tweeter, the brand uses a material called GrapheneQ, which was designed specifically for acoustic applications. This is the first time the material has actually been used in a loudspeaker and shows Ex Machina is doing things differently. Typically, titanium is used for many tweeters, but the GrapheneQ actually has a better stiffness to weight ratio, and makes for a super-wide sweet spot.
Last, but not least, Ex Machina has worked DSP into the design of its loudspeakers. While some may still have reservations about DSP-based monitors, the brand has done much to dispel this. Each Ex Machina monitor has its own floating point SHARC DSP, AKM Velvet Sound-based conversion and ultra high precision reclocking circuit from Danville Signa that was specifically designed for this application.
Ex Machina Monitors
Ex Machina Pulsar Monitors
For your smaller rooms, the Ex Machina Pulsar is a monitor choice that is incredibly hard to beat. The Pulsar is an active, 3 way monitor pair that features a 6.5” coaxial driver for the mid’s and tweeter. This is then paired with a powerful 8” woofer that can reach down to a staggering 24 Hz. Housed in Valchromat, Ex Machina’s choice for a very high-quality wood composite, these monitors excel acoustically over the MDF or plywood cabinets being used by many other monitor manufacturers.
One of the impressive features of the Pulsar is its DSP integration that ensures the phase and magnitude are linear. Another is the driver material: the tweeter and mid driver are constructed using domes of Ora GrapheneQ, a material that is well damped, stiff, and surpasses the performance of silk and paper drivers. With the Pulsar’s outfitting choices, Ex Machina’s goal is to allow you to confidently make better decisions faster, a goal that they achieved with ease on this monitor.
Ex Machina Quasar Monitors
The middle-of-the-range offering from Ex Machina, the Quasar is a monitor best suited as mains monitors in medium-sized rooms, or near-mids in larger rooms. The goal on this set was to produce monitors that maintain hyper accuracy, but are powerful enough to be used as massive, client pleaser speakers. Not an easy job, but the Quasar excels. This monitor uses their signature coaxial mid/tweeter, but is then surrounded on top and bottom by two 8” subwoofers to allow for excellent, accurate low end.
The same materials and amenities from the Pulsar are employed here with Valchromat housings and DSP integration. Quasar has a completely flat response down to 30 Hz, and the twin woofers succeed in their job of revealing the true character of your mix’s low end. You’ll find that the Quasar sonically is very similar to the Pulsar, but allows for accurate, linear output at much higher SPLs as well, a necessary feature for larger control rooms and for applications where clients need larger, more immersive playback.
Ex Machina Supernova Monitors
In a feat of true design excellence, Ex Machina unveiled their top-of-the-line monitor, the Supernova. Fitted into a hexagonal design, these monitors house 6 (yes, SIX) aluminum-silicon alloy woofers. Understandably, the Supernova is a powerhouse when it comes to low frequency representation; that said, it does so with extreme accuracy. The center of the monitor contains the Ex Machina signature coaxial mid/tweeter, providing beautifully honest feedback for the midrange and high frequencies of your playback.
The Supernova is beyond exquisite for mid-field and far-field applications; users will be staggered by the amount of accurate, linear playback from a far-field speaker. It goes without saying that clients will be dazzled, and mixes will play through with integrity at very high volumes, due to the DSP integration, the acoustically superior housing, and the rigid, detailed construction used for the speaker cones. Producing a perfect hemispherical wavefront, the sweet spot, the size, and power of these are wide and beautiful. Want to get loud? Good, that’s why you buy Super Nova, as they reach all the way to 112 dB at 20 Hz. The range and power here is incredible. One listen, and you’ll be a believer.