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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This is an owners thread for all JBL speakers and other components, including: vintage JBL, JBL Pro, JBL XPL, JBL studio monitors, and JBL Synthesis speakers and systems.
 

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So no current JBL speakers need to apply? Is there a current JBL thread?
Or, am I reading this wrong?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
It's for anything JBL. Thank you for pointing that out to me. I just mentioned the lines that came to mind at the time. The post has been edited for clarification.
 

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A bookshelf speaker I like and designed by Greg Timbers is the JBL
Studio 530 - sort of a sleeper - however, the real thing. Also, it will
hold up against some of the so-called more popular speakers that are
out there. Also, my preference against other horn tweeters out there.

My subjective take on them >>

They are transparent, smooth, with a spacious big soundstage - that has
good imaging, detail and definition. > Compared to the Snell K7, with a
Seas dome tweeter > the 530 bi-radial horn speaker, is neither forward or
laid back, and I feel that I am being drawn into the stage and not pushed
back. Is the Studio 530 speaker so-called perfect, no >> however they are
real good, and come real close to my nit-picking needs

Trumpet, Saxophone, Guitar, Flute, Violin, Drums and Cymbals, Piano, >
Harmonica, Female and Male voices all sound natural and rich. The 530
will not cover up Diana Kralls' somewhat raspy and sibilant voice > and
the same with Norah Jones somewhat raspy voice.

Their 5-1/4 inch woofer is good, and if some are offended by woofers that
are smaller than 6 inches, then no need to read further. >> However, this
woofer has some deep, tight/controlled articulate bass. JBL did not invite
Dr. Mushy Boom to help out with the bass tuning. It nearly has the same
amount of bass as the Boston VS260 6 inch speaker, that does go down
low. > The speaker can/does handle Rap, Reggae, Rock, Electronic Dance,
Metal, Jazz, R&B and so on. And yes, it does real nice with Classic Rock. Now
that is not all it can handle - it can do Classical, Light Rock and them Oldies
but Goodies and is good with Jackie Evancho, plus Gospel music

They also, are real good for Home Theater with good dynamics and bass.

The speaker is really clean sounding, and less colored than a lot of them so-
called popular good dome tweeters. The tweeter sits deep in the horn behind
that silver screen in the front - and the woofer sits recessed from the front
of the speaker. Greg Timbers did some good geometry work here. They need
to be toed in - and at least 12 inches from the back wall, and 18 inches from
the side walls.

They are better to me than their current $599 street price >> and hold up well
against the $1250 retail price, of the Snell K7. So to me, they are in the same
so-called subjective league of $600 to $800 range speakers

They do have an 18 element crossover - which is unique for that price range.
http://www.jbl.com/estore/jbl/us/products/Studio-530/STUDIO 530_JBL_US?skuId=STUDIO 530BK_JBL_US&searchMode=regularProductOnly&sCatId=cat140013

Rotating image of the JBL and look inside
http://proteusaudio.hu/images/stories/Studio590/JBL Studio 530.gif
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Greg Timbers is one of the best speaker design engineers alive. Thanks for your review of the Studio 530. It is indeed a sleeper, and the fault lies with Harman International. They build a great product and then discontinue it before their marketing department has the opportunity to make consumers aware of it. While the Studio 530 is still available, too few people even know about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
My favorite Greg Timbers design is the XPL-200 with the DX-1 active crossover. I bought a pair when they first came to market, then sold them sometime later for a pair of B&W 801s. A few years later I bought them back and parted with the B&Ws. Sometimes you run across a speaker that sounds more musical than others -at lest to you. For me that speaker is the XPL-200.
 

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Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

Interesting read. I guess it all comes down to what you like in sound. He does have a good point. If a cheaper speaker sounds as good to you as a $10000 speaker does then why spend the money? To each their own. As for me, I really have a hard time liking a muddy or too bright speaker/room. It is hard to hear detail which becomes a frustrating experience for me. But when I hear a great speaker system in a treated room, I just fall in love with the sound and music. It become a pleasure and joy which makes me happy.
 

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Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

I would agree that there are attrocious sounding $10,000 and up speakers that I might just as soon have the JBLs over, but I think you very much overstate its value. A decent speaker, but nothing exceptional. Just reliable and well known sound. I doubt that they would be the first choice for most audio engineers or producers.

I would rate several other speakers as being more significant, like the LS35a or the AR 3a, or KLH 9. And being able to adjust the crossover to vary response is not, to me, as valuable as lower distortion levels, which many current speakers seem to be characterized by. The JBL is not so glorious in this regard.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

I must have written the post very poorly. It's not about the virtues of the 4412, or how it's an amazing speaker. It's about how the studio setup and equalization affects recordings, and how that audiophiles try to compensate for this through different speaker systems.

In short, the source material is the source of many problems, and changing the speakers and/or applying room correction won't fix this.

The 4412 offers an easy and inexpensive way to experience this.

A good reference book on this is 'Handbook for Sound Engineers' edited by Glen Ballou.
 

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Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

Your post required wading through a great deal of praise of the JBL and your statements about it being the most significant speaker of all time. While it is true that the equalization of any recording is affected by the vision, preferences, and studio monitor presentation of the recording, there is much more to great sound than just crossover levels and crude equalization.

There are as many variables to what makes a speaker a good choice for an individual as there are in a recording path. Then placement, room characteristics, and associated equipment as well. Your case that adjustable crossovers are of such great value just does not resonate with me. Sorry.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

Let's say for example that we have a recording of a piano made in a church. It is sent to two different recording studios to be equalized and mastered. The first studio has some cheap PC speakers, and equalizes the recording using them. The other studio has full range studio monitors. Do you agree that the final product will sound different when played back through your own speakers?
 

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Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

Of course it will. Not my point. My point is that adjustable crossovers are not going to correct that. It might to your satisfaction, but not to mine. I would still prefer to listen to either, assuming I liked the material, on speakers other than the JBL, and I would not be adjusting the crossover on every recording if I did own them. Variance in recordings is just part of the world of audio. I don't move my speakers for every different recording either, nor adjust equalization or tone controls.
 

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Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

I agree that the 4412 may very well be a great speaker but speaker choice is as much a personal choice as a searching for a girlfriend, everyone has their own idea of what is perfect. Adjustable crossovers is nothing new in the pro industry and JBL is not the only company offering that.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

Now, if I replaced your present speakers with any pair of small studio monitors, like the 4412, do you agree that your system would sound different?
 

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Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

If I replaced your car with a Ford 150, probably the most popular truck of all time, would it drive differently? Of course. What is your real point?
 

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Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

Now, if I replaced your present speakers with any pair of small studio monitors, like the 4412, do you agree that your system would sound different?
Not sure if this is directed to me but yes of course it would. And it very well may not sound as good as what I have now. That is why room treatment, auto room correction like Audyessey is important.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Re: JBL 4412: The Holy Grail of Audio

Hi tonyvdb,

No, the post was intended as a follow-up to a previous poster, but you're more than welcome to join the discussion. :)

I doubt the 4412 would sound as good as what you have. I didn't claim the 4412 was the best speaker of them all, but that it's impact as a very popular studio monitor continues to impact many recordings to this day.

It may help to understand that while I own a pair of 4412s, they are not my main speaker system, and are only used for testing.

I'll edit and update my blog post with additional information to clarify this.
 
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