PreSonus has an excellent reputation in the studio monitor market. The Eris range is an entry-level offering that has a lot going for it. In this review, we check out the smallest in the range. The Eris E3.5.
PreSonus Eris E3.5
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 is a compact studio monitor that is perfect for smaller studio spaces. An attractive and affordable choice that delivers excellent sound quality.
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 is an impressive studio monitor. Let’s dive into the details of what this compact set of speakers has to offer.
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 has a lot going for it in the sound department. This small studio monitor manages to deliver an excellent balance across all frequencies.
The response is clean and clear. The highs are impressive without any tinniness to the top end. The mids also sparkle without any muddy tones. The low end is smooth but doesn’t offer a lot of depth. Considering this is a 3.5-inch speaker that isn’t surprising. If you need a more substantial low-end response you’ll need to look at larger monitors or invest in a subwoofer.
The exceptional balance makes these an excellent set of speakers for music production. A flat response is crucial to highlight the flaws in your mix.
One thing to note is that these do have a very narrow sweet spot. The sound stage is small so you’ll want to only use these as near-field monitors. For most producers, this isn’t a problem since they’ll be sitting in front of their PC’s while mixing and mastering. But, if you want these to fill your room with even sound prepare for disappointment.
Speaking of sweet spot these speakers can reach up to 100 dB SPL within one meter so there is plenty of headroom to play with if you enjoy your music loud.
Despite the small sweet spot these little monitors outperform a lot of other speakers of similar size.
The low price may lead you to think that the quality isn’t great. That couldn’t be further from the truth. The PreSonus Eris E3.5 is sturdy and well constructed.
While the parts used are not super top end you can’t expect that at this price. What you do get though is an excellent balance between good quality components without a huge price.
Plenty of thought has gone into these speakers with a range of features included. Most notable is RF interference which is a common problem with many speakers. The E3.5 includes added shielding to minimize interference from other electronics.
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 is a compact monitor that offers a 3.5-inch woven composite woofer to handle the low end. The high-frequency driver is a 1-inch silk dome tweeter.
The Eris E3.5 is lightweight and delivers excellent sound quality.
The Class AB amplification system is also well-suited to handle intricate productions. You’ll be able to distinctly hear increases in volume without distortions.
The frequency response is also solid at 80 Hz – 20 kHz. Plenty of depth here to accurately reflect what you are listening to.
Budget monitors tend to not offer much in the way of tuning options. This can be a challenge if you have an awkward studio space. Having access to making adjustments can make all the difference. It can make an average sounding monitor into one that sounds great.
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 gives you access to some refined acoustic tuning options. You can adjust both the high and low frequencies with dedicated controls on the back of the primary monitor. Each can swing from -6 dB to +6 dB. This is ideal to balance the sound output. For example, if you are finding too much low-end refraction based on your monitor placement you can dial down the low-end for a cleaner sound.
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 gives you plenty of flexibility on the connection front.
The Eris E3.5 gives you good options for inputs including AUX.
You’ll have access to two input options. A balanced TRS connection is perfect for eliminating any potential RF interference. There is an unbalanced RCA option available as well.
Switching to the front of the speakers you’ll find both a headphone jack and AUX jack. A convenient way to directly plug your headphones in or connect a media device.
Another excellent feature of the PreSonus Eris E3.5 is the understated design. The matte black vinyl coating is subtle and won’t attract scratches or fingerprints like other glossy coatings.
Color is minimal with blue accents on the woofer and the PreSonus logo. Just enough to not make these look dull. If you like minimalist monitors these tick all the boxes. These would look great as replacements for generic computer speakers while also looking good for studio use.
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 offers a small footprint. This makes it an excellent choice for small studios or smaller work surfaces.
The Eris E3.5 is perfect for small desks freeing up more space for other gear.
At just 6.4 lbs (2.9kg) they are also very lightweight. A good option for those that may want to place these on shelves that can’t handle a lot of weight.
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 monitors offer great value for money. The component quality is good. The extra features included add to the value proposition. It’s hard to find both tuning options and balanced inputs at this price point.
What tips things over the edge though is the sound quality. For such a low price you’ll be hard-pressed to find better alternatives.
What Others Have To Say
The PreSonus Eris E3.5 has racked up a lot of positive reviews. Not surprising considering its price and how much it offers producers.
Studio Monitors Vs Computer Speakers
If you are a producer it is really important to understand how your music sounds. This is where studio monitors become vital. A good set of studio monitors will represent your latest creation in its purest form.
Normal computer speakers color sound and are not good for mixing.
Unfortunately, most commercial computer speakers are not balanced and flat. They will often have a greater emphasis on certain frequencies. While this makes music sound good it doesn’t represent what your music will sound like in its purest form. As a result, your mix may not be accurate and not sound great on different sound systems.
Having access to a good set of studio monitors allows you to properly balance your mix. This helps ensure your music sounds its best on everything from headphones to large sound systems. If you are serious about creating the best music possible I recommend you pay extra attention to getting a good set of monitors.
Compact monitors have become very popular as more and more producers work from home. Here are some other speakers worth considering that keep a small profile.
Mackie CR3-X Review
The Mackie CR3-X monitors are a super affordable option that is great for those on a tight budget. While not the best-built monitor it packs a powerful punch and looks great.
- The 3-inch woofer delivers a surprising amount of volume.
- Handy speaker placement switch to determine which side you want the volume knob.
- Not the hardiest monitors out there.
Read our full Mackie CR3-X review for more detailed information.
Pioneer DM-40 Review
The Pioneer DM-40 is another popular choice for small monitors. It lacks the refined balance of the Eris E3.5 but does give you a deeper low end. An excellent choice for DJs that want more oomph.
- Meaty low-end. Loud output with minimal distortion at higher levels.
- Excellent build quality at a good price.
- Lacks tuning options to refine the output.
Read our full Pioneer DM-40 review for more detailed information.
IK Multimedia ILoud Micro
If you have a bit more to spend the IK Multimedia ILoud Micro is an excellent alternative. The response is flat and balanced with a range of extra features like Bluetooth included.
- The slim profile is also an attractive alternative to standard speaker design.
- Excellent sound quality making these a great choice for producers.
- A big jump up in price compared to the Eris E3.5.
IK Multimedia iLoud Micro
Should You Buy?
Compact monitors often fall short in one area or another. It’s hard to come across one that delivers on all fronts. The PreSonus Eris E3.5 is as close to perfect as you can get.
It gives you excellent sound quality that delivers a flat response suitable for producers. Tuning options and extra flexibility in connection options are further benefits.
Once you factor in the budget price it becomes very easy to recommend the Eris E3.5. A great choice for both new and established artists that want a compact monitor for their studio.
Presonus Eris E3.5