How To Select A Recoil Stabilizer

Recoil Stabilizers are available in a wide variety of sizes and weights to properly match the many different near field monitors in use today. This is augmented with a choice of firing angles to suit the various mounting requirements along with a choice of ‘portrait’ or ‘landscape’ footprints to address personal monitoring preferences.

As a rule, the tweeters in your monitors should be firing at ear height. It is important to note that the Recoils are approximately 2" (5cm) thick. So if you have your monitors on a meter bridge, adding Recoils will elevate your monitors slightly. If on the other hand you have adjustable stands, then the HF – horizontal fire will likely be a good choice.

After extensive listening tests, we have found that a 4:1 ratio is the minimum mass required to properly stabilize a monitor. So if you have a near field monitor that weighs 20lbs (8kg), you would select a Recoil that has a mass that is no less than ¼ the weight or 5lbs (2kg). To make selection as easy as possible, we have also provided a cross reference that is sorted by manufacturer and model.

The Three Basic Firing Angles:

• DF – Down Fire

Down-Fire Models

The DF or down-fire model introduces a 5º degree angle to compensate for the added 2" (5cm) height that the Recoil Stabilizer will introduce when put in position. This is often a good choice when the near fields are used on a meter bridge or elevated shelf that cannot be adjusted.

• HF – Horizontal-Fire

Horizontal-Fire Models

The HF is designed to fire sound straight on, in a horizontal plane. This makes the HF an ideal choice for adjustable monitor stands and custom mounting in soffits or shelves where the added 2" height is desired. This is also the preferred format for isolating sub woofers.

• UF – Up-Fire

Up-Fire Models

Up-fire Recoils are designed for post production suites where monitors are often placed directly on a desk top. These introduce a more acute 10º angle that better directs the tweeter to the listening position. The up-fire angle can also be handy for smaller near field monitor when placed along side larger ones when sharing the same shelf.

Down Fire
Horizontal Fire
Up Fire

Choice of Portrait or Landscape


As some engineers like to have the monitors ‘straight up’ or vertical (portrait) while others prefer to set the monitors on their sides or horizontal (landscape), there are Recoils to address each one. In some cases, you may find that the monitor footprint is slightly larger than the Recoil. So long as the mass ratio is maintained (4:1), the overhang will have no sonic effect. You can always choose to use larger Recoils if you prefer the esthetics.

Primacoustic is a division of Radial Engineering Ltd. Copyright 2013. All rights reserved.