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Advice sought - Small room, loving JBL LSR305 - What's the next step up?

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rongon

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A little bit of a high frequency droop EQ'd in could make them suit you even better. From 6-8 feet listening distance they're not too bright. Closer up and they get brighter. They're not designed for extreme near field use, hence the suggestion about some EQ (or even just turning the treble knob down a bit). Also toeing them out a bit helps.
So, after nearly a week here, I think these 530s are a bit bright if listening from a distance of 6 or 7 feet from the speakers. Is that 'near-field'? I thought near-field was like what you see when a recording engineer has a pair of small monitors perched on the mixing console in the control room. The distance from speaker to listener is then more like 4 feet. Something like this:

Best-Budget-Studio-Monitors-Under-_200-That-Don_t-Suck---Mobile.jpg
HPro_InsightsBlog_StudioMonitors_Img1.jpg


A fellow over on diyAudio suggested putting a small value resistor in series from the power amp to the tweeter. The bi-wire pair of binding posts makes that easy to accomplish. I first tried 5 ohms, but that rolled off too much of the highs. Then I tried 3.3 ohms, and that made the speakers have a sort of 'audiophile' polite sound to them. TV sounds really good that way, but music sounds a little dull. So now I have a 1.5 ohm 5W wirewound resistors in place, and it sounds pretty good to me so far. TV sound is a bit too bright, but it always is. Music sounds really good this way. I also wound up toeing the speakers out more, which spreads the stereo image out nicely.

Still, any way you slice it, these are really good speakers for $216 USD.
 
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Chrispy

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So, after nearly a week here, I think these 503s are a bit bright if listening from a distance of 6 or 7 feet from the speakers. Is that 'near-field'? I thought near-field was like what you see when a recording engineer has a pair of small monitors perched on the mixing console in the control room. The distance from speaker to listener is then more like 4 feet. Something like this:

Best-Budget-Studio-Monitors-Under-_200-That-Don_t-Suck---Mobile.jpg
HPro_InsightsBlog_StudioMonitors_Img1.jpg


A fellow over on diyAudio suggested putting a small value resistor in series from the power amp to the tweeter. The bi-wire pair of binding posts makes that easy to accomplish. I first tried 5 ohms, but that rolled off too much of the highs. Then I tried 3.3 ohms, and that made the speakers have a sort of 'audiophile' polite sound to them. TV sounds really good that way, but music sounds a little dull. So now I have a 1.5 ohm 5W wirewound resistors in place, and it sounds pretty good to me so far. TV sound is a bit too bright, but it always is. Music sounds really good this way. I also wound up toeing the speakers out more, which spreads the stereo image out nicely.

Still, any way you slice it, these are really good speakers for $216 USD.
503s?
 

Mal

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TV sound is a bit too bright, but it always is...
Always? Have you listened to all speakers? Have you used all systems? Have you listened through all ears? For me, in my set up, my Wharfedale Diamond 9.0s are too bright, my KEF LSXs are not. Amir gave quite a positive review to the KEF LSXs. Darko, and several other reviewers, as well. Have you considered them? The LSX 1s are being sold off at bargain prices now II has come out. People worry about the apps, but I'm happy with them. KEF have had 3 years to iron out the problems and I think they've done a "good enough" job. (OK, I found them a bit fiddly, but I got my essentials (CD aux in, TV optical in, Spotify connect, ...) working without serious problems. (Tidal Connect and Amazon Music Connect were a real pain... I gave up... but I'm happy enough with Spotify...)
 

Tangband

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Hi there,

I figure this might be a good place to ask for shopping advice, since it's difficult to personally audition all the speakers there are out there in the world.

A few years ago, Amir's review of the LSR305 sealed the deal for me, and I sprang for a pair of the first gen ones, as an experiment. I truly believed I'd hate them, but I wanted to hear what all the fuss was about. Long story short, they're still in my living room. I enjoy them pretty much every day.

I have a small listening room, in an apartment with downstairs neighbors who I actually like, so Klipsch or home theater style SPLs are completely out of the question. I think this is one situation where a pair of very accurate near-field monitors can be a good choice. I listen rather close to the speakers, about 4 to 6 feet away, depending on whether I've moved up close for some 'serious' listening.

I don't need more bass response than what the LSR305s deliver. They make enough bass, for sure, but it's not the tightest, fastest sounding bass I've heard. My room has a bit too much bass reinforcement as it is, and I'm not a 'bass head'. But I don't like a mid-prominent, shrieky sound (Klipsch bookshelf speakers, Lowther).

So, the question: If I want to spend about $1500 for a pair of top flight active near-field monitors that are a noticeable improvement on the LSR305s, what do you think I should listen to? I'm thinking Genelec 8030C would fit the bill. Or is Genelec 8330C better? What about Neumann KH-120? Any others that are highly recommended for home listening?

Or should I save up another $600 or so and get a pair of JBL 705p? JBL 4305P?

Or for home listening would it be better to go the traditional passive speaker route with something like a pair of Revel M16 and $500 for a good amplifier? (Is there a really good stereo amplifier for $500?)

I'm looking for small speakers with accurate frequency response, low distortion, nicely controlled horizontal dispersion, and ASR-approved :). I don't need loud, I don't need super-low bass. My room actually sounds OK if I sit close to the speakers, and 'not bad' if I move away from the listening window. But I'm definitely staying near-field for any serious listening.

What's the verdict? Is there a verdict?

Thanks for your opinions, experiences, etc.
--
Hi.
I own a pair of JBL studio 530 and I have own a pair of jbl 305. I have done comparisons, measurements and also comparisons with Genelec 8030c.

Yes, the 530 is a bit better loudspeaker than jbl 305 . The 305 is a bit unarticulated in the midbass.
Yes, the 530 is a tiny bit bright sounding.
The Genelec 8030c is better than 530 . Deeper bass, clearer, more neutral and you can play louder with lower distortion. The Genelec 8030c has much less hiss than jbl 305.

If I would subjectively rate those speakers soundquality it would be something like this:

Jbl 305 = 6 ( very good for the price )
Jbl 530 = 7
Genelec 8030c = 9

The Genelec 8330 and 8340 are still about = 9 , but the sound with digital connection is a tiny bit clearer than 8030c and has advantages If using GLM correctly, and 10 Hz deeper bass for 8340.
 
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pehu63

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I had the JBL 305 mkii, sounded quite good for the price. Ugly looks.
The interior architect in me switched to Genelec 8030, directly on mike stand, no iso-pod.
The genelec 8030 leaves these JBL 305 in the dust. Big difference in clarity, no resonances.
The interior architect was right, great looks, and big improvement in sound.

I used REW to compensate room modes, on both.
 

Descartes

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My listening room is a bit of …..And of course, the elephant in the room is going to be the KEF LS50 Meta at $1300. Since I don't need (or want) high SPLs, and I don't need super-low bass response, that would be the 'high end audiophile-approved' choice, and it also happens to measure very well (deemed "excellent" by Amir).

OK, sorry for thinking out loud in public like this.
KEF LS50 Meta get my vote!
 

Chrispy

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Makes me wonder where something closer to the cost of the Genelecs like the JBL 705p would compare....
 

program2000

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The 530 looks good to me. It's certainly smoother and flatter than the 305.

The stereophile measurements are unreliable because they splice a nearfield bass measurement to a quasi ancheoic measurement. They also lack spacial data. The director of engineering at a prominent speaker manufacturing company told me he considers their measurements to be worthless, and I'm inclined to agree.

The detractors of the "algorithm," are ignoring the fact that we are highly unreliable at evaluating sound. We know from double blind testing that we factor what we know about a speaker (appearance, cost) heavily into our subjective evaluation of the sound. If I'm comparing a 708p to the 308p, and I know the 708p costs 7 times as much, that's going to heavily bias my judgment of the sound quality, even if im tryi g to be objective. The knowledge of the price of the speaker can't be disentangled from the judgement of the sound unless we are in a double blind environment.

So while the 708p may be a better speaker, especially at very high output levels, we can see in the measurements it would be hard to distinguish from a 308p at 86dB or even 96dB. Yes, the distortion of the 308p is a lot higher than we like to see, but that probably doesn't matter because it's below the threshold of audibility (at least according to cea 2010).
I don't agree here. I did a blind test of the neumann kh120 vs "some cheap 5 inch speakers" a few years ago. What pained me was that they sounded almost identical, with a slight advantage for those $100 packs. Except that when I started talking about the advantage of the kh120, it turned out that the latter were playing. I put next to them after a few years loudspeakers from one company, which you don't like here on the forum. Neumann has gone down the drain. Such a loose throw-in on my part.

B.
 

Mal

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I don't agree here. I did a blind test of the neumann kh120 vs "some cheap 5 inch speakers" a few years ago. What pained me was that they sounded almost identical, with a slight advantage for those $100 packs. Except that when I started talking about the advantage of the kh120, it turned out that the latter were playing. I put next to them after a few years loudspeakers from one company, which you don't like here on the forum. Neumann has gone down the drain...
What were the "cheap speakers"? In what way did they sound better? What were the "next to them" speakers? There aren't enough blind tests going on, when they do, please give the full details!
 
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