This is the world's finest stereo monitor controller, with built in mastering quality DAC, audiophile-grade headphone amplifier and unrivaled system configuration tools.
The m905 is our second generation stereo monitor controller, engineered from the ground up to provide unrivaled audio playback performance with a comprehensive and intuitive feature set.
Included are all requisite professional audio inputs and outputs, both analog and digital, with an asynchronous USB input for jitter free 24/192 computer playback. Outputs include 3 stereo speaker sets, two subwoofer, and our reference headphone amplifier.
The remote is powerful, clean and ergonomic. It includes a headphone output, talkback microphone, and dedicated real time SPL meter. Controls are designed so that anyone unfamiliar with the system can operate it immediately and intuitively, then with a minimal time investment advanced setup and calibration features are accessed and programmed with ease.
The m905 offers more monitoring management features than any current monitor controller. But its true essence is as the most sonically reliable and innate centerpiece available for your studio - homebase for your ears, eyes and hands.
Analog inputs: unbalanced, balanced, CUE, Talkback mic
Digital inputs: 2x AES 3, 1 S/PDIF, 1 TOSLINK, ADAT (selectable in 4 pairs, or 2 pairs in SMUX),
USB Audio circuitry designed for completely transparent and musical playback performance
Asynchronous Class 2 USB playback supports up to 24 bit/192kHz
Mastering quality DAC circuitry with configurable de-emphasis filtering
Sleek, ergonomic hybrid RCU with hardware switches, large level encoder and graphical LCD
LCD display shows input, level, output, SPL and DAC status plus a powerful calibration menu
SPL meter sourced by built in RCU mic - includes level, peak, fast and slow modes, A & C weighting
Precision .5 dB step level control for speakers and headphones
Reference headphone amplifier circuitry, with outputs on both the RCU and mainframe
Built in crossfeed circuit for simulating loudspeaker listening with headphones
Dedicated mono, dim, mute, sub mute switches
Mono mode can be set to L+R summed, L only in both channels, or R only in both channels
3 available stereo speaker outputs, two available as 2.1
Multi-mode SUB/ DAC/ METER out SUB out mode for stereo or multiple mono subwoofer outputs
Digital loop thru output - fixed source (AES,SPDIF,TOSLINK) or follows the digital input source
DAC out mode for a fixed DAC output fed by the selected digital input, level calibration from 0-100
METER out mode fed by selected input signal (digital or analog), level calibration from 0-100 or post speaker fader level
- m905 IR Remote is included. This feature allows wireless infrared remote control of a select set of monitoring controls via the Grace Design Remote, a standard Apple Remote, or with iOS and Android via the Logitec Harmony Remote.
The first thing I noticed when I listened on the Grace was an immediate sense of effortlessness compared to my previous audio interface. The sound is full and by that I mean instead of peaky high frequencies and phasiness, you get a smooth top end but less bright than a coloured audio interface, as well stable mids and lows- it's almost as if I can hear details longer- sounds do not jump at you in a weird unnatural way depending on what is going in the music, and I'm going to assume this is a result of less phase shift and a better frequency response. When I plug my headphones in, I can clearly hear how coloured they are (HD650s). I love the features of the unit. I could not be happier. I'm a mastering engineer and this makes much more sense for critical listening with confidence that if you hear something weird it's not in the monitoring path but in the original audio. I use Barefoot MM45 monitors in a fairly treated room. I am now considering upgrading the HD650s to HS800s so I can also take advantage of the beautiful headphone amp. My only wish would be for the unit to have more channels available on the USB interface from the DAW- I would have loved to monitor pairs of channels directly through the USB interface, to monitor original audio vs. mastered audio vs. reference audio. This can be done of course, using the ADAT inputs or other I/O and digital connexions, but I just wish it could all have been possible through the USB driver. Other than that I'm thrilled.
February 24, 2017
Grace m905 Analogue: the Audiophile's choice!
I've used the Grace m905 Analogue since Fall 2016 as a straight line-level preamplifier to drive a pair of Meyer Sound Labs X-10T monitors with Meyer Sound X-400C subwoofers. I resisted for weeks, but now must admit that I prefer it to the "audiophile" line-stages I have that cost up to five times its price. And that's not even taking into account the brilliant interface, the real-time SPL meter and the fact that it doesn't weigh 30 kg! I can see on the horizon an upgrade to the full version?once I've liquidated those hi-fi preamps.
August 13, 2015
Fantastic sound, quality build, and well thought out features...
I considered a lot of different DAC/monitor controllers before deciding to give this one a try, and I couldn't be happier with the decision.
The features are very well thought out - love the remote's LED screen, and the ability to customize the input and output names. The x-feed feature for headphones to emulate how your ears hear the sound of speakers in a room has turned out to be a very useful thing, as well as the ability to solo each speaker, and the 'left minus right' mode. The unit is endlessly customizable and can be calibrated for any preference or set up. The optional infrared remote capability is fantastic, almost every function can be controlled remotely with a Logitech Harmony Smart remote (or the app and your smartphone) - including talkback activation. Well worth the extra cost if you're not always sitting next to the wired remote!
Obviously the most important thing here is how it sounds....and this thing sounds fantastic! The DAC is incredible - it doesn't seem to colour the sound in any way (as you would want when mixing or mastering), but is incredibly detailed and clear. The headphone amp is also top quality, and powerful enough for any type of headphones. The USB computer input is great for streaming high quality music from the computer, even streaming music from the internet sounds a LOT better - making it more useful for referencing when needed. I have yet to try the DSD streaming mode, but am definitely interested to hear the differences there. I also noticed an improvement in the sound of my turntable using the unbalanced input directly from my phono amp. I don't think anyone will have any complaints about the sound quality here. I've heard similarly priced units from Crane Song and Dangerous, this is easily on par with those.
Grace Design as a company have been very helpful with any inquiries I've had, and they stand behind their product with a transferable 5 year warranty....which to my knowledge none of the competitors have.
If you're in the market for a great sounding DAC/monitor controller, this unit is well worth your consideration. The positive reviews for the M905 drew me to it initially, and I'm very happy I decided to go this way!