This is the third generation of the IK Multimedia ARC system. They keep adding more features to it and refining it. I always wanted to try it out, but figured that unless you start out with a pretty good room, any corrections that you make with a system like this will sound different anywhere you listen. And I just have "a room" and depend on accurate monitors close enough to me and far enough from the walls so that I can work with them.
The thing you need to understand about this system is that it works as a plug-in on the master (or monitor) bus of a DAW. It's not something that you can start up and run any audio source through it (unless it goes through your DAW first). And you have to remember to bypass or remove it when bouncing a mix to a stereo file so that it doesn't get applied to the file that you're going to send off to the CD plant.
If you already have a decent room, you can probably make it better using the ARC. But it won't make a tuned control room out of a hall closet.
Thanks Sir Mike,
I do realize all of the above. We cannot make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. My room is not large, it does open up into the kitchen area. I've got heavy quilts hanging from stands, primarily over the windows to reduce freeway noise.
There was an amazing flutter echo that I got rid of by hanging a quilt in a straight line from the one place where you could really hear it when you stood and spoke. I found it by accident.
I've got a pair of Mackie HR824 - the original USA models. They get pretty mixed reviews, some love, some hate. I don't turn them up loud and they are around 3' out in an equilateral triangle.
They are about 18" from the wall, with a quilt inbetween. They do have the low frequency passive radiators in the back.
I think they sound good but I don't like anything turned up too much.
I am pretty comfortable with them but thought the ARC system might at least address any frequency discrepencies.
A well tuned room is not in the works at this point. I do use headphones sometimes, I can get work done with them but do not trust them for final mixes.