JBL LSR305 vs KRK Rokit 5 RP5 G3 comparison || Part 1. KRK RP5 G3 Review

 Welcome to my review of KRK RP5 G3 studio monitor. Let me first give You some background to this review. Recently I moved to different place, and found out that I will have space for my first “real” desktop system. My previous system was more of a midfield system where I was listening mostly from my couch. Without much thinking, I bought proper desk, comfy chair and started research for my new active speakers. I narrowed my choice to two speaker sets and decided to buy both, compare them and choose to stay one that I will like more. Both cost exactly the same 150 euro. One of those speakers was KRK RP5 G3, third generation of well-known KRK’s ROCKIT series, which we’re going to look at today. Next time we’re going to review the other pair and compare it  to KRK

KRK RP5 G3 is an American design and with its famous yellow woofer cones they look awesome, compact and desk friendly. My girlfriend loved their looks from beginning and I have to admit I did as well. Build quality is also great. This monitors are really dense and weigh quite a lot for their size. Big weigh is probably the effect of KRK’s choice of class AB amplifiers to power tweeter as well as midwoofer. This choice of amplifier type also resulted in fact that KRK RP5 G3 are almost dead silent when they are not playing any music, which is great news for nearfield listeners.  Midrange and bass is taken care by 5 inch, yellow driver built from glass aramid and driven by 30W amp. High frequencies are the region of  1 inch soft dome driver slightly recessed in to waveguide and driven by 20W amplifier.

We also have dials to adjust high and low frequencies on the back of each monitor. This monitors have auto on off function which can be useful and irritating. It allows to leave power switches on the back of monitor ON, and when there s no signal from source it will automatically turn off after 20 minutes. This is the good part. What is not so good is the fact that powering up after the signal is feed again. It’s not always working perfect. Many times I had to turn one of the monitors “off” and “on” again to get my music playing again. Backlit KRK logo on the front looks very classy, especially in the dark.

Set Up
Signal to KRK’s is feed from Matrix Mini-I DAC via XLR cables. Source was my Samsung laptop connected to DAC with USB cable. My room is around 12 square meters.

The first thing I noticed about the sound of KRK’s was clarity. Everything sounds clear, sounds have great timbre and detail. Overall sound is open, more on the bright side of spectrum but almost without any harshness. Sometimes high hats can sound a little bit grainy, but only sometimes. Most of the time midrange and highs have good quality, everything sounds natural and real, without unforgiving nature of some other bright sounding speakers. I can listen to them for hours with smile on my face. RP5 G3 is also very dynamic speaker. All the dynamics are present even on low levels. Add that to silent amplifiers and they immerse You into music even when listetning on low levels. I can also crank them up and they  respond very well to my demands, pumping up some serious nearfield levels.
Another important quality of this monitor is very nice, big soundstage with all the instruments and vocal having their own space. Center image is very good as well, and even when I move my head out of the sweet spot, soundstage moves with me.  Vocals either male or female sound very good on those monitors as well as natural instruments, drums acoustic guitars etc. They also work very well with rock music. Guitars have nice bite and sound big when material calls for it.

Rock music bring us to one last aspect of this speaker i have to serieously consider which is low frequencies. With rock music these Rockits do more than enough down low to keep You entertained. Kick drums have nice punch and definition, and bass lines are well articulated having their own place on soundstage. 5 inch woofer in KRK’s goes down to around 60 hz and drops off quickly after that. This is not so good news to Hip Hop lovers, movie score lowers and symphonic music lovers as there is just not enough low end in these monitors to make Your room shaking especially rooms bigger than 15 square meters. Maybe bigger speakers in Rockit lineup would do better for You. KRK sometimes lacks scale with music that has lots of low end making it sound a bit thin and flat. Other solution could be adding subwoofer to set up. 

Bass ability of KRK RP5 G3 definitely isn’t the best in the business, but it is surprisingly good overall, with most of music sound full and rich, if only a bit thubby, with only the hardest hitting tracks coming out a bit flat. It’s a good solution for small rooms and set ups where ultimate levels of sound are not reqired. I also tried to play with bass controls, adding a 1 od 2 dB to low frequencies on back of monitors, but boosted bass only resulted in bass and lower midrange muddiness without much help to low frequencies.  I would definitely  say to avoid this if possible, and go for bigger speaker if bass is Your thing. But if You like to listen to acoustic music, rock music and any type of music that doesn’t require prodigious bass than You will be more than happy.

Overall KRK RP5 G3 are very nice sounding speakers, very musical if You will. They have most of studio monitors advantages, yet let's You enjoy Your music on whole another level when You come from some typical consumer speakers. In this price range I think there is not many speakers sounding this good. RP 5’s are great desktop speakers, looks nice and takes small amount of Your desk space.  Definitely they sound much better than almost any consumer PC speakers and any sound docks and Bluetooth speakers available right now. If You want an excellent sounding Bluetooth speaker buy this and add a Bluetooth receiver to them. You will have excellent sound, better than any Bluetooth speaker available near this price and quite a lot above, and convenience of auto on off so you will just connect Your device with receiver and start play music on it. Rokits will turn on automatically(most of the times J) and start playing Your music wirelessly.  That’s how it’s done in 21 century. Just remember to buy good receiver with Apt-X.  Thay can also work great in medium sized rooms as a TV speaker, and when You add a subwoofer, You can pump up some movies and enjoy great sound.  Great speakers for the money.

+excellent built quality
+compact size and good looks
+clean and precise midrange
+smooth extended heights
+big soundstage with precise images
+good power and high volume available

-bass response slightly boxy
-sounds flat used mid field in medium sized rooms
-adjustments to highs and lows degrades the sound quality

Verdict: 8/10