From Yamaha’s consumer hi-fi group, 1977’s most inauspicious audio debut was surely the NS-10M. At the time, no one in pro audio used them, and they didn’t rise to prominence for another five years, when they began replacing Auratones as the most common studio reference speaker. Claiming that it smoothed the monitors’ high frequency response, engineers began hanging tissues over the tweeters, and NS-10Ms so adorned were a common sight during the 1980s. For more on this subject, check out Mix contributing editor Bob Hodas’ “Analysis of the NS-10 Tissue Paper Phenomenon” http://bobhodas.com/tissue.html.
In 1987, Yamaha debuted the NS-10M Studio model, designed by Akira Nakamura, which retained the same 7-inch woofer, but had a redesigned dome tweeter, tweaked crossover and minor changes to optimize horizontal console-top placement. In 2001, the NS-10M Studio model was discontinued, with Yamaha citing difficulties in obtaining the wood pulp used in those distinctive white woofer cones, although variants of the NS-10 are still offered in Japan as consumer products.
For insights into the distinctive sound of the NS-10M speakers, read Mix magazine’s lab analysis of the Yamaha NS-10M at mixguides.com/studiomonitors/Basics/audio-mix-speaker-tests.
Click here to check out an original user’s manual on the Yamaha NS-10M Studio.