The new V Series 4 nearfield studio monitors are the fourth generation of KRK's top-tier V Series, designed to provide high-quality, accurate representation in multiple applications, at a sensible price. The line includes three models, the V8, V6, and V4 Series 4, which are equipped with 8'', 6.5'', and 4'' woofers, respectively, made of woven Kevlar and housed in a cast aluminum frame. A 1'' Kevlar dome tweeter is shared by all three models. Each speaker's cast aluminum and MDF enclosure houses its two drivers, colored in KRK's signature yellow, behind a black, brushed aluminum baffle. Two Class D amps are in the rear, one for each driver, and a forward-firing bass-reflex port is positioned front and bottom.

All three of the V Series 4 monitors feature seven Low Control and seven High Control voicings, accessible via two rotary switches, for a total of 49 EQ options for users to consider when dialing in the speaker's frequency response for personal preference and room compensation. For example, there are settings to offset wall-coupling as well as "desk-coupling" effects, the latter referring to the buildup of low-mids from reflections off of a desk or console, if the speakers are positioned on a meter bridge.

Additional rear-panel features include a rotary switch for precision input-level attenuation (0–3 dB in 0.5 dB steps), and a bank of DIP switches for ground lift, input sensitivity (−10 dBV or +4 dBu), power standby behavior, and backlighting modes for the KRK logo. Interestingly, also in the rear is a Micro USB port, which KRK explained is for possible future firmware updates. KRK was even thoughtful enough to include a "tweaker" tool to turn the rotary switches.

Upon arrival, I used the V6 S4 monitors for several hours daily, for three weeks straight. The monitors sounded great right out of the box with the factory EQ voicings, which have no cut or boost. The flat voicings provided well-balanced low frequencies, resulting in good bass definition without any unnecessary boost, and overall, imaging was very good. However, after two weeks, I decided to dial down the bottom end ever so slightly. While listening to jazz recordings that featured an acoustic bass, I sensed the low frequencies could benefit from some trimming, perhaps because the monitors were producing a bit too much bass as a result of their proximity to a wall. Moving the Low Control switch to a setting that engaged a −2 dB shelf at 75 Hz and a broad, −2 dB dip at 200 Hz provided the lower-bass and lower-midrange attenuation I was looking for. Over time, I also found it beneficial to switch the High Control setting to a low-Q, −1 dB reduction at 3.5 kHz. This gently brought down a range of high-mids that can be problematic for my ears, even at low volumes.

The V Series 4's well-implemented voicing controls potentially make these monitors long lasting; if you decide to change the setup in your studio, or move locations, the monitors can be easily adjusted to fit that new environment. Additionally, if you have a mobile rig and are looking to travel with a set of monitors instead of relying solely on headphones, the compact V4 S4 model would be an appealing option, as it weighs in at just under 13 lbs. Not to mention, all the V Series 4 monitors come with grilles for both drivers, which you can optionally mount with the included hardware. The grilles would provide the necessary protection if you took the speakers on a mobile–recording or mixing gig. Plus, having all of the EQ voicings to adjust your monitors to fit each new listening environment as you travel would be particularly useful. Along with being a viable mobile-studio solution, even the smallest V4 S4 model could be an option for your project studio by simply adding one of KRK's matching subwoofers to your monitoring setup.

During my time with the V6 S4 monitors, I felt that the mixes I completed on them translated well, when played in other listening environments. I was very pleased with the results that I heard on the KLH stereo speakers in my living room, the Audio Engine speakers at my desk, and the Bose stereo system in my car. The KRK V Series 4 active monitors have loads of features, allowing them to withstand moves to different room environments and changes in personal taste. The V6 S4 model I tested will certainly fit multiple applications and is a great choice for a professional or project studio.

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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