Is this the best $200 you can spend to improve your studio’s sound? Probably!
Let’s start at the end of this short review: in terms of how much better your studio will sound, ISO-Pucks deliver more than their cost. It’s not easy to think of a bigger improvement you can make for a couple of hundred dollars.
The idea is ostensibly simple: they isolate the speaker cabinet vibrations from whatever they’re sitting on to clean up the sound. You hear that right away – it’s not subtle.
What’s not simple is the design, which consists of an absorbent, bouncy middle section sandwiched between rubbery sections that hold the cabinet and shelf (or whatever) together by suction and friction.
ISO Acoustics touts the Pucks’ advantage over other isolators as being that their absorption is broadband, rather than over a narrower frequency band. That makes sense, although admittedly the difference between them and the dense foam isolators I was using before isn’t easy to hear.
What is obvious is that they hold the speakers securely. If your speakers are sitting where you often bump them out of position when you walk by – please don’t laugh – you’ll appreciate that. ISO-Pucks are also intended to use on things like turntables, as well as guitar amps, which are more likely to get bumped than other things.
ISO Acoustics makes three different sizes of these things: ISO-Puck Mini, which support 6 pounds each (24 pounds if you use four under your speakers); the big ISO-Puck 76s, supporting 40 pounds each; and the regular ISO-Pucks we checked out, which support 20 pounds each. You could probably get away with three pucks under each speaker, but we used four.
Addressing the elephant in the room, yes, $240 is a lot of money to spend on isolators for your speakers. But when you hold these in your hands and feel the quality and weight, to say nothing of the R&D that surely went into them, you understand the price right away.
Furthermore, it’s easy to justify if you’ve spent much more on good monitors and want them to sound their best. Okay, we’re sold.
Prices: ISO-Puck Mini, $59.99 for two, $99.99 for four; regular ISO-Pack (reviewed), $59.99 for two, $120 for four, $240 for eight; and ISO-Puck 76, $78 for two.