If you’re looking to pick up studio monitors and considering the Yamaha brand, you must have surely come across the Yamaha HS5 and the Yamaha HS7 models.
Which product is better, though? What’s the difference in terms of sound, bass, and performance?
In my opinion, the Yamaha HS7 is the superior product with far more powerful sound and features.
However, I’d also say the HS5 is a great pick if you have a smaller studio space.
Read on for this Yamaha HS5 vs HS7 ultimate buyers guide.
Let me give you a brief look at the Yamaha HS5 vs HS7 and how they stack up on their own.
Yamaha HS5 Review
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The Yamaha HS series remains one of the brand’s MOST POPULAR products.
In particular, the HS5 is a 5-inch monitor with dimensions of 10 x 12 x 16 inches and weighs 11.7 pounds.
The wattage is 70 Watts, and it has a high-end frequency response of up to 30kHz.
It comes with all of the HS series’ signature features, such as:
- Newly developed transistors
- High-performance amp unit
- Superb control and connectivity
- Low-resonance enclosure design
Perhaps my favorite thing about this model is that it boasts the brand-new noise-reduction technology to keep external disturbances to a minimum.
The idea behind this design is to limit outside interference and allow the users to listen authentically.
Yamaha has achieved this by controlling and reducing the vortex created near the speaker’s port.
It conducts an in-depth analysis to reduce the audible noise levels by up to 6dB, allowing you to experience pure playback from the monitors and enjoy the privileges of true sound.
- HS Series features newly developed transducers
- Amplifier units are perfectly matched with the transducers
- Includes two response controls
- Built with a low resonance enclosure design
- Only ideal for a smaller room or studio
- Limited line outs
Yamaha HS7 Review
The HS7 features a 7-inch monitor and has dimensions of 30 x 30 x 30 inches. Its total weight is 18.1 pounds.
It operates on 95 Watts and has a high-end frequency range of 30KHz.
Apart from this, you’ll find Yamaha’s HS series trademark features, including:
- Room control
- Trim response controls
- Built-in bi-amplification system
- Large magnets used in the advanced magnetic circuit design
- Dedicated power amps that are ideally matched with the woofer and tweeter
- Noise-reduction technology
- Great FR — 43Hz to 30KHz
- XLR and TRS jacks accept both balanced and unbalanced signals
- Offers room control and high trim control
- Built-in bi-amplification system
- Requires an amp for heightening volume levels
- Not ideal for bass-heavy genres, such as EDM
Yamaha HS5 Vs HS7: Feature Face-Off
I’ll list down Yamaha HS5 vs. HS7 features, so you’ll be able to narrow down your preferred product.
As the HS7 has a frequency range of 43Hz to 30kHz and the HS5 has a frequency range of 54Hz to 30kHz, it goes without saying that the HS7 will offer better performance for the bass and lower-end frequencies.
This means that the bass output begins to drop off for the HS5 after 54 Hz, while the bass remains steady longer with the HS7.
Thus, if you need the low-end frequency and bass more often than not, I highly suggest that you pick up the HS7.
Both models have the same high-frequency range, so either monitor will do well in that aspect.
Mid and High Frequency
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Unlike the bass, the mids and highs of both models are crystal clear.
But while the mids are near indistinguishable between products, I noticed that the highs sound slightly flatter and clearer in the HS7 thanks to the superior woofer size.
If you’re looking for a monitor that doesn’t require a subwoofer, the HS7 will do nicely.
I assure you that it’s powerful enough to not require one and can generate enough oomph on its own.
However, if you’re looking for a monitor to complement your subwoofer, you should opt for the HS5.
If you don’t own a sub but are interested in the HS5, I recommend pairing it with the Yamaha HS8 sub to create an incredible sound.
Winner: It depends
Woofer sizing is:
- HS5: 5 inches
- HS7: 6.5 inches
Thus, to determine which of these models works best for you, it makes sense to consider the size of your studio.
A larger studio will benefit from the HS7, while a smaller space can easily make do with the HS5.
In my experience, you can always bring the HS5 up to speed within a given space by picking up a pair of subwoofers to equalize the monitors.
Power requirements are:
- HS5: 70W
- HS7: 95W
Greater Watts equals = greater output, more often than not.
This explains why the HS5 starts to trail off a bit after the 1kHz range, which could be a problem.
The HS7 manages to stay steady well after this range.
Therefore, if you’re looking for a set of speakers that you can blast with reckless abandon, the HS7 will work better for you than the HS5.
The HS7 is far bigger and heftier than the HS5:
- HS5: Under 12 pounds
- HS7: Over 18 pounds
If you’re looking to save a lot of space in your studio or lack enough space for a large set of active monitors, the HS5 will suit your needs.
On the other hand, since the HS7 is more powerful, I think it makes sense that it’s heftier and bulkier than the HS5.
I didn’t consider the weight a big problem since I wasn’t lifting these monitors around anyway.
The weight just shows how much more power the HS7 is packing compared to the HS5.
Stand Out Features
Although there isn’t much separating the HS5 vs. HS7, the Yamaha HS7 stands out as follows:
- Better lows: The HS7 will offer greater output at lower frequencies because its frequency range moves from 43Hz to 30KHz.
- Bigger woofer: As the woofer size is bigger in the HS7 and has an output of 95W, expect the overall sound and volume levels to be higher and better when compared to the HS5.
- Size: The HS7 is the big brother of the HS5, so it’s bigger and can take on bigger rooms. So, if you have a small studio, the HS5 will do nicely, but a bigger studio demands the HS7.
- Professional-grade equipment: The HS7 is currently being used by producers globally and is considered a professional-grade studio monitor. It comes backed by numerous sound producers across various forums.
Thus, if you’re looking at creating a PROFESSIONAL setup rather than a home studio, opt for the Yamaha HS7.
Monitoring the Best
Sure, the HS7 is a slightly bigger and better product with a bigger price tag as well, but I wouldn’t say it’s always the best option.
Opt for the Yamaha HS7, if you:
- Are going for a professional setup
- Have a large space or average sized room
- Content with not needing a subwoofer
- Are focused on low frequencies during production
- Seek a fuller sound with more body
In comparison, the Yamaha HS5 makes more sense if you:
- Have a small mixing room
- Have a home studio setup
- Already own a subwoofer or prefer having a separate subwoofer
- Are intent on focusing on the mids and highs during production
Some great alternatives to the HS5 are the JBL LSR305 and the Rokit 5 just in case you want to step away from the Yamaha brand.