Focal CMS 50 Compact Studio Monitor
Award-winning, best-in-class, compact studio monitor
Focal Professional’s CMS series of compact studio monitors takes a step up in size with the 5" CMS 50. Winner of the prestigious MusikMesse International Press Award (mipa), 100 magazines voted the Focal CMS 50 Best Studio Monitor. The CMS 50 also took top honors in the ProSoundWeb and Live Sound International Reader’s Choice Awards. Like it’s smaller sibling, the CMS 40, Focal’s more powerful CMS 50 shares the same acoustically transparent cabinet design, which allows a wide distance between the monitors without compromising the soundstage.
The 5" mid-woofer of the Focal CMS 50 has low-frequency response extending down to 55Hz and a linear midrange—offering both a powerful, controlled bass and sonic neutrality that’s unequaled in its class. Its high-frequency range extends past 28kHz (-3dB), which reduces phase shift in the audible range, resulting in greatly improved “in-band” realism and spatialization. The CMS 50 is a marvelously affordable, high-quality addition to any home, project, or professional studio.
Focal CMS 50 Compact Studio Monitor Key Features:
- Ultra-realistic voicing
- Powerful 130W, 2-way design (80W LF/50W HF)
- 5" woofer
- Small size and extended bass frequency (down to 55Hz) ensures versatility
- Acoustically transparent cabinet allows accurate listening even in proximity to reverberating surfaces
- Extremely low-distortion (0.005% THD), 80W rms LF amplifier provides transparency and power in mid-bass register
- 50W rms HF amp with 19V/ms slew rate reproduces minute details with ease
- Room optimization EQ including, low- and high-frequency shelving, 160Hz parametric EQ, and high-pass filter
- Magnetically shielded
- Audio clipping LED indicator
- Mounting points offer numerous studio integration possibilities
Focal CMS 50 Compact Studio Monitor Unique Features:
- Inverted-dome tweeter for width, depth, and soundstage accuracy
- Aluminum/magnesium alloy dramatically reduces HF distortion
- Proprietary Polyglass cone driver; neutral sound, no coloration
Focal CMS 50 Design and build
The 2-way Focal CMS 50 features a wide-bandwidth design with a linear response from 55Hz to 28kHz, ensuring both a tight and present bass and superior spatial imaging. (If you require deeper bass, simply add the powered Focal CMS SUB, which is ideally matched to the CMS 50 monitors.) The CMS 50 has two matched amplifiers onboard powering a 5" LF driver and an aluminum/magnesium alloy, inverted-dome tweeter. The LF amplifier provides 80W of power with an amazingly low 0.005% THD for sonic transparency and powerful mid-bass region. The CMS 50’s 50W high-frequency amplifier boasts a lightning-fast 19V/ms slew rate, enabling highly accurate reproduction of the minutest details and transients—making placement in the stereo field much easier.
To aid in countering the effects of room modes, the CMS 50 has four EQ controls: low-frequency shelving EQ adjustable from 0-450Hz at 0dB, -4dB, -2dB, and +2dB; high-frequency shelving EQ adjustable from 4.5kHz to 20kHz at 0dB, -4dB, -2dB, and +2dB); high-pass filter (12dB/octave at 45Hz, 60Hz, 90Hz); and to reduce console reflections, the CMS 50 has a 160Hz parametric EQ (Q-factor 2), adjustable at 0dB, -2dB, -4dB, -6dB. The CMS 50 also has a volume control ranging from –66dB to 0dB.
For easy integration into any studio, the CMS 50 has switchable input sensitivity, allowing it to operate at +4dBu via XLR input or –10dBV via RCA input. The CMS 50’s aluminum cabinet has been optimized for maximum rigidity and damping, making it acoustically transparent—hence its ability to be placed in less than advantageous spaces (too close to a wall or corner) while suffering no ill effects.
In keeping with ease of studio integration and optimal placement, the Focal CMS 50 comes with decoupling table stand, two height-adjustable spikes, phase-optimization plug (tweeter), two removable grilles (tweeter and woofer), and four rubber feet. It also has mounting points compatible with K&M® and Omnimount® mounting kits, offering numerous integration possibilities (desktop, meter bridge, stand, ceiling, wall, etc.).
Focal CMS 50 Applications
The Focal CMS 50 compact studio monitor is an excellent choice for both home and project studio, post-production, edit suites, mix translation, or as a single point-source mono speaker, easily at home in world-class studios. But that’s not all; connect a pair to your Internet computer and give yourself an accurate means to evaluate audio examples of equipment you may wish to buy for your studio, or simply use your new CMS 50s to truly enjoy listening to music.
What makes Focal CMS 50 sound so good?
It’s been said that if you’re not manufacturing your own LF and HF drivers, then you’re simply in the packing industry, not speaker manufacture. Focal Professional employs several proprietary and patented technologies to ensure world-class performance in each of its monitor lines.
Inverted dome tweeter
Two of the most difficult things to hear in a mix are compression and reverb tails. Focal’s innovative inverted dome tweeter offers unparalleled dynamics, enabling very precise control of compression, while its outstanding spatial precision facilitates accurate assessment of reverb tails and stereo imaging.
It accomplishes this by mechanical coupling of voice coil and dome. The voice coil is fixed mid-height on the dome and uniformly moves the entire surface of the cone. The positive dome is only joined at its edge for a flexible surface. The inverted dome directly radiates into the air with maximum efficiency, which results in an extremely precise soundstage. The dome’s response curve is far more linear than that of any positive dome, thus providing better dispersion and very low directivity.
Combining the excellent damping qualities of magnesium with the superior rigidity of aluminum, this unique marriage of metals offers several advantages. To begin with, it greatly reduces distortion, which combats ear fatigue in long mixing sessions. The impulse response of this alloy is incredibly fast with a very short reset time. Those factors combined with excellent damping capability, enabling a frequency response beyond 28kHz (-3dB).
The tweeter’s ultra-wide and linear frequency response provides greater phase coherency in the audible range, thus producing a more realistic sound; extremely wide soundstage; balanced, neutral sound reproduction; and dynamic, detailed high frequencies. Focal’s aluminum/magnesium inverted dome tweeter combines perfectly with their proprietary Polyglass woofer in perfect tonal synergy.
Focal’s patented Polyglass cone
Focal Professional’s exclusive Polyglass technology comprises molten glass microballs applied to a cellulose pulp cone. This unique process combines the excellent damping quality of paper with the rigidity of glass. Polyglass’ rigidity index exceeds that of single-skin Kevlar®, and approximately ten times superior to that of polypropylene.
The superior mass/rigidity/damping ratio of Polyglass results in outstanding linearity in frequency response. This linearity provides greatly increased definition in the midrange, resulting in transparent, uncolored sound.
Who’s using Focal Professional Monitors:
Numerous professionals are using Focal monitors for music production, video post, and mastering. Among them are RSPE friends including, musician-producer Dweezil Zappa; renowned Hollywood sound-recording mixer Ron Bartlett (A Good Day to Die Hard, Life of Pi, Prometheus, This Means War, We Bought a Zoo, Pearl Jam Twenty, and many more), and premier Hollywood mixer, Gary Lux (The Jacksons, Frank Sinatra, Rob Thomas, Janet Jackson, Usher, Sting, Norah Jones, Keith Urban, and Rod Stewart). Dweezil, Ron, and Gary share their views on Focal monitors: VIDEOS
About Focal Professional
Since 1979, Focal-JMlab has been a world leader in high-end acoustic loudspeakers. While maintaining production in France for over 30 years, Focal has never deviated from its core values of innovation, tradition, and designs reflecting “luxury "à la française.” Focal strives to be the world's best in everything they create, and their award-winning lines of professional studio monitors reflect that philosophy.
“Focal: the Spirit of Sound.”
Focal Professional CMS 50 studio monitors are the professional’s choice for compact, yet highly accurate monitoring.