Today’s article presents the top 10 best monitor isolation pads to improve your sound.
Have you just purchased some new monitors for your studio but feel like your recordings aren’t sounding as they ought to? The sound is distorted, unbalanced, and blurred. The high frequencies are obscured, and you aren’t getting an accurate bass response…
It would be best if you didn’t always blame your speakers or monitors.
With your studio monitors or speakers in direct contact with your desk, vibrations from your speakers that go into the desk may result in the desk becoming a pseudo-speaker.
This means that apart from the sound that comes directly from your speaker, vibration from the desk mixes with it, causing distortions.
The result depends on the kind of pads you buy, but note that you may be facing more than desk resonance issues.
Here are our picks for the 10 Best Studio Monitor Isolation Pads:
1. Best Seller: MoPAD Monitor Isolation Pads By Auralex Acoustics
Auralex Acoustics, an award-winning Company, leads the acoustic treatment products industry. Their best-selling product in this category has always been the MoPAD Monitor isolator.
Made of durable foams, MoPADs are manufactured in pairs. There are four angling wedge pieces and four base pieces in each team.
From the way they’re designed, they can be used to support all sizes of recording monitors and loudspeakers (including horizontal speakers) that each weigh up to 100 lbs.
Many companies produce clones of this product with different foam thicknesses and angles. But Auralex is a unique brand that gives you a superior solution.
- Its five positioning options make it workable. You can tilt the speakers backward or forward to get a perfect listening angle.
- They can be used to reduce vibrations that degrade sophisticated electronics’ performances.
- They offer cleaner, clearer, and more articulate sounds.
- Produces a more precise and tighter bass response and unmasks obscured higher frequencies.
- The isolated pads decouple loudspeakers to prevent coloration and sonic resonance.
- Sometimes, they can be a bit unstable with big monitors unless two pads are placed on them.
- Initially, you might find it tough to fix the Wedge Adjuster perfectly, but as soon as you get the perfect angle and position, you’ll be happy to have taken some time on it.
2. Most Affordable: LyxPro MNS-4
Regarding isolation, LyxPro MNS-4 iso pads perform a great job on any hard surface.
These isolation pads improve the accuracy of the whole monitoring system and eliminate irrelevant vibration, thus improving bass sound accuracy.
- Tilted wedges for a better listening angle.
- The segments come in sizes and colors that differ slightly.
3. Premium Version: Auralex ProPAD
They are made of 3-layered foam construction. Also, a trademarked ISO-Plate is included on its top, and a Melamine-covered MDF base increases acoustic isolation and prevents slippage.
- They offer superior sonic isolation from loudspeakers’ vibrations and vibrations from the surface they rest on.
- The foam wedge is moved to the bottom, making it possible to tilt upward without reversing the pads awkwardly, as with MoPADs.
- ProPADs offer fine midrange resolution and a deeper soundstage.
- Although the sound is improved, they are pretty costly.
- For the price, it ought to be a bit wider. The ProPAD-XL versions (19″ x 13″ x 3″) cost double!
3. Best Stabilizer: Primacoustic RX7 Recoil Stabilizer – 10 Degree Up Fire
This Primacoustic RX7 Recoil Stabilizer is a platform for loudspeakers that differs from the ‘common’ foam pads.
Made from high-density urethane, the base of the Primacoustic RX7 makes it different from other pads. The synthetic crystalline substance used in manufacturing the RX7 helps detach the loudspeaker from platforms such as shelves, monitor bridges, and other monitor stands. To help keep the monitor in place, it features a thin neoprene surface top and a heavy 4-inch steel plate.
The steel plate stabilizes the speaker as it rests on a foam base.
This version features a 10-degree Up Fire that offers an ideal listening angle. The speaker coil moves energy forward, thus preventing the initial transient from suffering lag, and the resulting impulse is sharper.
The imaging and transient response are improved, increasing the bass response’s accuracy.
- The surface (non-slip) ensures that your studio monitors are stable.
- They are designed to last.
- 10-degree Up Fire for a better listening angle.
- They’re pretty costly (sold per unit).
4. Best Deal: Adam Hall SPADECO2 Studio Monitor Isolation Pads
These pads are great at sound improvement as they feature high-density acoustic foam, preventing unwanted resonances with the surface they stand on.
They are wide enough to cover big monitors and can easily handle the weight.
- They’re not as expensive as Auralex isolation pads, and they’re good alternatives if you don’t have much to spend.
- There’s only a single unit for each loudspeaker.
- Unlike MoPADs, they do not have a variety of positioning options.
5. Most Adjustable: MoFo Rizers
The MoFo Rizers package contains a pair of Monitor Focusing Rizers, and they’re higher and larger than most available foam pads (12″ x 15″ x 4″). The package also contains a pair of black tiles (self-adhesive) to be placed on the Rizer decks for stabilizing your loudspeakers.
A feature that gives them an edge is that they’re adjustable. They can angle your monitors in whichever angle configuration you want.
MoFo Rizers can bring the monitor speakers to ear level. This is an all-inclusive cheap alternative to purchasing speaker pads and stands altogether.
These produce a better mid-range definition, and they have tighter bass and more defined sounds as well. They equally aid in improving the overall soundstage and imaging.
- They bring your monitor up to ear level, so you may not necessarily need a speaker stand.
- They’re big for standard 8-inch studio monitors and take up much space on a desk. They aren’t defined for monitor stands.
6. Cheapest: Pyle PSi03 Recoil Stabilizer Speaker Risers
The Pyle PSi03 Recoil Stabilizer Risers isolation pads are an excellent choice for those with a maximum budget of $20.
The bases of the platform are reversible for creating downward and upward-firing audio effects.
The Risers are efficient at eliminating reversibility and unwanted resonance levels, and they detach vibrations and irrelevant noise, which confuse the ear.
- They can adapt to different subwoofers and speakers. The wedges are cut adequately without any color variation.
- For more adjustability, an extra wedge could be added.
7. Smallest Sized Pads: Studio Solutions High-Density Studio Monitor Isolation Pads Pair (5″ Monitors)
These high-density studio monitor isolation pads have similar features to other brands and are cheaper than Auralex MoPads.
The major difference is that at 7.4″ x 11″ x 1.5″, they are smaller than other monitor isolation pads available, which might be a reason for their low price.
They’re designed to fit 5-inch Studio Monitors but are not wide enough for 8-inch monitors.
The wedge is cut out for five different angle configurations that allow for more appropriate angling of the drivers.
- Availability of flexible spacing and configuration for double speakers
- They are not large enough for 8-inch monitors.
8. Best Choice: KING DO WAY Two 5″ Quality Monitor Isolator Pads
A King Do Way iso pad is made of top-quality elastic cotton materials and shock-resistant high-density foam.
The pads reduce unwanted protrusion that tends to mix with the original sound. Also, King Do Way pads can effectively control echo sounds and unwanted reverb, and they are as effective as other costlier brands.
While they are primarily designed to match 5-inch Studio Monitors, they’re also available for 8-inch monitors.
- Good isolation and more precise sound
- Minimal tilt.
Why Use Monitor Isolation Pads (ISO Pads)?
If your loudspeakers haven’t been properly isolated from the surface that supports them, then you need a Monitor Isolation Pad (iso pad).
As we already mentioned, speakers produce vibrant energy and vibrations. ISO pads separate the speaker and the surface it’s on and absorbs all the vibrations that would otherwise cause distortion. If they’re not well isolated, the vibrations can be transmitted into the monitor stand or desk, degrading your sound quality.
Studio Monitor Isolation Pads or iso pads can help to prevent this from occurring. They improve your sound by isolating the speakers from the supporting surface.
They are handy for preventing sonic artifacts, decoupling monitors, and reducing structural vibrations.
Also, they have an impact on low and high frequencies. As such, the monitors will produce a more accurate bass response which most sound engineers and electronic music producers will appreciate.
So to get the perfect sound, you should consider getting studio Monitor Isolation Pads.
Things To Consider When Shopping For Isolation Pads
1. Floor Stands, Desktop Stands, Or Pads
In most cases, getting a pair of the best speaker isolation stands or bookshelf speaker isolation stands is often daunting.
But, if you do not want to take that route or do not have enough room, you can consider getting some desk stands or desk pads.
However, even if you go for a desk stand, depending on what you buy, you might also need to purchase some iso pads for them. Some desk stands cannot handle cushion vibrations.
Choosing between desk stands and buying some pads will ultimately depend on the required height for your monitors.
If they need to be raised much more than pads can do, then stands may be the ultimate solution.
If the monitors do not require much height covering, it would be enough to consider some low-profile pads.
2. Supported Weight And Surface Size
As far as bookshelf speaker isolation is concerned, weight and size are very important. If the iso pads cannot support the speaker’s weight and size, it will result in the same issue.
If you can get the perfect size of pads for your monitors, they should be just fine once you have the ideal weight support.
If required, you should take base measurements of the studio monitors and buy stands or pads that suit the dimensions.
3. Isolation Foam Pads Foam Quality
Most ISO or isolation foam pads are made with foam, which you might already know.
Although isolation foam pads may look alike, there are differences between them.
You may find numerous similar pads, but they are sold at different prices.
One of the reasons for this difference is the brand, and another reason is the production material used.
Also, some pads that look like they are made of foam might have more than just foam.
So, it is worth taking a better look at the pads before forming an opinion about pricing.
Types of Monitor Isolation Pads?
Most people don’t know that there are three types of isolation pads for monitors. Each type of monitor isolation pad has a different form factor and provides decoupling differently. Here are the types:
- Foam Pads
- Isolation Stands
- Decoupling Cones
Each of these different types of isolation pads makes use of either absorption or decoupling to isolate the monitor from the surface it’s on. As its name suggests, absorption absorbs excess vibrations, while decoupling pads prevent the vibrations from passing onto the surface.
Foam uses absorption while decoupling cones decouple as its name suggests, while isolation stands use a mixture of both methods.
Monitor Isolation Pads Diy
Please check out the following video to learn how you can build a monitor isolation pad yourself:
What Do Speaker Isolation Pads Do?
As we have mentioned, speaker isolation pads reduce vibrations from the studio monitors getting passed down to the desk or table they’re sitting on. They do this by dampening and absorbing the vibrations.
Are Monitor Isolation Pads Necessary?
So are monitor isolation pads worth it? In most cases, monitor isolation pads are unnecessary and will not make a noticeable difference. However, if you place your speaker on a surface that rattles easily, your monitor isolation pads are a good choice/. Also, monitor isolation pads let you angle the speakers toward you.
1. Are isolation pads worth it?
Isolation pads are definitely worth your money. They help to reduce the vibrations and also to keep your studio monitor away from the surface that might be disrupting the sound.
2. What is the purpose of isolation pads?
If you cannot make the most out of your studio monitor system, this is when the isolation pads come to use. These pads are kept under the speakers, isolating them from the space under and reducing the vibrations. By reducing vibrations, the sound output that comes is quite clear.
3. Where to put the isolation pads?
Isolation pads are put under speakers to lessen vibrations, separating the speakers from the surface underneath them or absorbing excess vibrations.
4. Do subwoofers need isolation?
Your subwoofers should be isolated if you want to eliminate vibrations and resonance on your floor and other structures. The subwoofers’ sound will become more focused and punchy if isolated.
There you have it; the best speaker isolation stands on the market. Decoupling studio monitors from their supporting surface in every monitoring system is essential. Many bookshelf speakers, especially vintage ones, don’t isolate sound well.
Fortunately, there are solutions to suit most budgets and situations. So, if you’re looking to improve the sound from your monitors, here’s an excellent way to do that. There are not many variations between them, but there are also a few unique options. Of course, many other options are available on the market, but we consider these the best Studio Monitor Isolation Pads.