Sonarworks Reference 4 Studio Review

In recent years, there has been a recent increase in audio-calibration software primarily aimed at improving lower-end products, possibly because home studios are becoming very affordable. For a while now, Sonarworks Reference 4 has improved audio set-ups, but we venture to suggest that some of the bolder statements of the companies require a little expansion as they seem a little misleading.

Reference 4 is basically a program for equalization that does a fantastic job of cleaning up the audio outputs, whether they are headphones or speaker monitoring. When you configure some sound system on your Desktop or Mac, the software itself functions in almost the same way. It has a user-friendly visual representation of where you are going, but it is much more detailed.

Because of the deeper parameters, sorting can be a long operation. From start to finish, there are a decent number of stages. It is a useful tool in terms of anomaly detection later down the road, once you are set to your full potential, but we are getting ahead of ourselves.

There are two distinct choices for software; one is tailored for headphones and the other for speakers. In order to take readings at designated locations around the room and assist with the set-up process, you get a flat-frequency response measuring mic. It is a tiny omnidirectional microphone powered by phantoms that is extremely sensitive and powerful. It has a diaphragm of top quality and a highly detailed frequency response.

By sending a sweeping sine-wave signal of real-time clicks, the software and measurement mic work in combination with each other to detect where the mic is. The Automatic Microphone Positioning System will precisely chart the dimensions of your room and the positions where you can take the microphones to be visually highlighted on the screen in the window.

It can also take odd layouts into consideration and compensate for non-symmetry. If you have a unique room to record in, it is particularly helpful, as you can take into account offset speakers and angled ceilings, etc.

It utilizes the company's proprietary measurement method of Perceived Acoustic Power Frequency Response. This was carefully calibrated to measure sound in the way that audio is detected and perceived by human ears. This is what guides the optimum positioning, which the Audio Calibration filter Engine eventually determines.

This provides you with the tools for optimum display positioning. In a graph format, the curve readings it collects are shown, and you can see the previous configurations mapped against the current ones.

It will then increase the frequency response of your speakers per the data it has gathered until you have decent placement sorted. With its Speaker Range Extension and Acoustic Strength Simulation, software, tailoring the highs and lows, and cleaning the mids, respectively. It has broad compatibility, working with a wide variety of brands of speakers.

You may adjust the parameter settings. It will show you an overview of the bass boost, for example, against the target curves with each curve. It allows you to fight standing waves and poor acoustics, and frequency cut-outs are visibly shown. This may be attributable, for instance, to furniture in the way, etc., but it will help you get your set-up into shape.

There are a number of in-depth readings, many of which can go over most heads, but you can see the perfect flat-response and fit it in layman's terms. Some fuzz that will muddy your audio can also be viewed.

Sonarworks Reference 4 Studio

Summary

Audio correctional software that seeks to attenuate the sound system to the best of its ability is Sonarworks Reference 4. It analyzes the installation of your monitor and comes with a plug-in that you can attach to the display of your DAW monitor. It has some pretty important statements and costs a decent sum, so does the marketing hype have any truth?

In short, for the most part, yes. The specially designed microphone allows your sound set-up to be analyzed even more objectively, and the ability of the software to help flatten your frequency response for truer signal input to output can improve your recording and production fidelity. It helps to take away any coloration that can be calibrated to add to your headphones or speakers as they improve your audio.

Pros

  •   Tuned measurement mic with flat-frequency.
  •   Applications for headphones and speakers.
  •   correction and augmentation of audio quality.
  •   Optimum support for placement.
  •   Attenuation EQ
  •   Simple interface for consumers.
  •   Graphs with curves.

Cons

- Not all set-ups can suit fixed calibrations.
- A global summary would not fit with the drivers of ASIO.

Why We Like It -

To assist with their EQ processing, many high-end skilled set-ups rely on similar applications. It is always an integrated technology, but it can really assist an amateur rig with a stand-alone software kit like this. It will help to detect irregularities that perfect the positioning of the monitor and give the audio a better resolution because of a more precise response.