Yamaha NS-10: Complete Review

Norvan Martin
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The Yamaha NS-10 is a loudspeaker popular in recording studios during the 1980s and has since acquired mythical status. Even though the speakers are no longer manufactured, they remain in high demand among audio engineers seeking an accurate reference monitor. This is because of their faithful reproduction of “midrange” frequencies.

Specifications of Yamaha NS-10

Yamaha NS-10

The Yamaha NS-10 is primarily used in the recording industry for its superior sound quality. You are provided below with an overview of the basic specifications of the Yamaha NS-10.


There are three Yamaha NS-10 available, each with a different size.

Yamaha NS-10M: The smallest unit is the NS-10M, which stands at 10″ tall and weighs 14 pounds. It can be placed on top of a monitor or sound mixer to elevate it above other studio equipment for maximum performance. It also comes with its carrying case and two detachable power cords: one for the United States and Europe.

Yamaha NS-10M Studio Monitor: The middle-sized model is the NS-10M Studio Monitor. The measurements of this unit are 13″ x 9″ x 12,” making it a bit bulkier than its sibling but still reasonably manageable. It also has two detachable cords like its predecessor: one for North America and another for Japan. However, it does not come with a carrying case.

Yamaha NS-H630: The final model is the NS-H630 Home Theater Speaker System. It stands at 35 inches tall and weighs 44 pounds. Due to size limitations, it’s much larger than other models but should be placed on the floor rather than elevated.

In addition to these three models, several different color options are available. The NS-10M comes in black, dark gray, and white. The NS-10M Studio Monitor also comes in various colors: black/orange, black/silver, and black/white.

The NS-H630 Home Theater Speaker System is only available in two colors: black and white.

Yamaha NS10

Pricing and Budget

The Yamaha NS-10 retails for $700 to $1,000, depending on model and design. Its can be difficult to find online unless you are searching on eBay for a used one. The price will increase if a different power cord is required.

In addition, shipping costs may apply. There are no discounts available at this time. These monitors do not need to be upgraded frequently because they can maintain their sound quality for many years.

The Yamaha NS-10M Studio Monitor costs $1,000 new. The NS-10M Home Theater Speaker System is less expensive at only $700 new.

Because this unit comes with its subwoofer, it is more suitable for home use than studio monitoring because of the lower cost. However, unlike sibling units, it does not come with different power cords or carry cases.

Sound Quality

Several reviewers have compared the Yamaha NS-10 to other speakers to determine if they produce superior sound quality.

Many of these reviewers claim that you need to hear them in person to understand how great they sound. With this said, there are a lot of positive reviews that stand by the NS-10M Studio Monitor.

For example, one reviewer claims that these speakers are perfect for low to mid-range frequencies.

Another review claims that these monitors sound great when paired with subwoofers. The final evaluation states that the Yamaha NS-10 is effective and affordable.


The Yamaha NS-10M Studio Monitor comes with an XLR input and output jack allowing them to be connected to other studio equipment.

There is also a switch on each monitor so both sides can be turned off if necessary. Furthermore, they have selectable switches on the back of the unit to control volume, low-frequency cutoff point, and high-frequency cutoff point.

The Yamaha NS-10M Studio Monitor does not have Bluetooth capabilities.

Space Considerations

The footprint of the Yamaha NS-10M Studio Monitor measures 10″ x 12″(17), making it relatively small compared to other studio monitors available in the market.

The height is 13 inches tall, but because there is no stand included with the unit itself, it could sit on top of a monitor or sound mixer for an ideal fit.

The width is 9 inches wide, which means that it will have little to no negative impact on your room space. It weighs 14 pounds, so it will be hard to move around due to its sheer size and weight, but the flat base will make some adjustments.

In contrast, the footprint of the Yamaha NS-10M Studio Monitor is larger at 10″ x 12″(17). It’s also taller than its sibling unit, with a height of 17 inches tall. The width and weight are identical to its counterpart: 9 inches wide and 14 pounds respectively.

The Yamaha NS-H630 Home Theater Speaker System includes two satellite speakers measuring 3.75 inches high by 8.25 inches wide and 4.5 pounds each. The subwoofer of this system is nearly as large as the speakers themselves, with dimensions of 7.7″ high by 12.6″ wide and 23 pounds.

The Yamaha NS-H630 Home Theater Speaker System is ideal for small to mid-sized rooms because the two satellite speakers are slightly larger than most home theater systems available in the market today.

Because this system includes a subwoofer, it will produce superior audio quality compared to its peers. However, it does not come with additional power cords or a carry case, making setup difficult if you are using them in different locations.

Yamaha NS-10 speakers

Advantages of Yamaha NS-10

1. Well Designed Frequency Response Curve

The first pro of a Yamaha NS-10 is its well-designed frequency response curve with a flat bass range but slightly emphasized high frequencies.

This allows for accurate reference listening, especially when working on how you mix sounds through specific speakers or headphones.

While a frequency response curve is not everything, it’s still the most crucial part of choosing the perfect studio monitor speakers for your needs.

2. Low Impedance

Another pro of a Yamaha NS-10 is that it has low impedance, making it very easy to drive and thus can be connected to audio equipment with no problem.

Low impedance also means less power is required, so you don’t have to worry about constantly blowing them up when driven too hard.

3. Efficient in Power Consumption

The next pro of a Yamaha NS-10 is efficient in power consumption, allowing for easier portability and an increased lifespan.

This is due to less energy being consumed from its connected source device when being used over long periods.

4. A Smart Design with Lesser Moving Parts

The next pro of a Yamaha NS-10 is that it has an intelligent design, with more minor moving parts.

This is to ensure that nothing can go wrong or break down when it’s being used for consecutive hours per day over the span of years without any problems happening to your audio equipment. This is due to choppy vibrations caused by speakers having more moving parts within.

5. A Clear Sound with Good High Frequencies and Very Good Low Frequencies

Another pro is that one doesn’t have to worry about sound quality because the high frequencies are good enough for you.

6. Affordable Price Point

The next pro of a Yamaha NS-10 is that they are affordable. Despite some people saying that more pricey options might be better if you can afford them, then, by all means, go for it.

If you are looking for something affordable and don’t want to spend too much money, this is an excellent option because its price point is reasonable compared to other competitors on the market.

7. A Well-known Brand with a Good Track Record

Another pro of Yamaha NS-10 is that they are manufactured by a well-known brand, with a good track record, and thus you can be assured of their built quality compared to unknown brands.

8. Longer Lifespan

The next pro of the Yamaha NS-10 is that they have a longer lifespan than most other competitors on the market at around 30 years before having their first significant parts replaced or repaired.

This means less time worrying about something going wrong and more time working on your music.

9. Small but Sturdy Design that Doesn’t Take Up Too Much Space on Your Desk

Another pro is that it has a small but sturdy design, which allows for less space on your desk. Thus if you have a small working space, this is an excellent option because of its size.

10. Can be Used as In-Ear Monitors as Well

The final advantage of Yamaha NS-10 is that they can be used as in-ear monitors, allowing for easier portability and more convenience when it comes to using them wherever you go.

While this may not seem like a big deal at first, it makes a world of difference, especially during live shows or if they are already hooked up to a mixer with no need for auxiliary connections or amplifiers.

Disadvantages of Yamaha NS-10

  • Not flat
  • Manufactured back in the day
  • Some are extremely overpriced


The Yamaha NS-10 is a popular active studio monitor speakers model, originally produced by Yamaha in 1978. These speakers had an almost 12-year reign as the number-one choice for mix engineers and were used on countless classic recordings from that era.

The NS-10 has since been discontinued. However, they are still sold new and used on Amazon and other channels and still command high prices.

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Norvan Martin is the founder of BoomSpeaker.com. He is a professional Electronics Engineer and is passionate about home theater systems and AV electronics. BoomSpeaker was created as an online hub to share his knowledge and experiences as it relates to home theaters and home audio electronics. My email: [email protected]  Connect on Pinterest and Linkedin