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Genelec 8361A Review (Powered Monitor)

Rate this speaker:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 3 0.6%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 4 0.8%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 21 4.1%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 488 94.6%

  • Total voters
    516

ROOSKIE

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My own active speakers are rated 500+ 100+100=700. Apparently that is the kind of power needed for clean bass, midrange and treble respectively?
Well I don't know about yours but a dedicated mid and tweeter can be made very efficient, and usually robust bass woofers are pretty inefficient.
So if the mid and tweet were 90-92db sensitivity and the woofer(s) 85 you would need 400watts to the woofer for 100ish to the mids/tweets. Add in some bass boost down real low to boost it a bit before it falls off, 3db of if would then require the woofers to have about 800watts to the 100 for the tweets and mids. But really this is about sensitivity not a baseline requirement. Sensitive woofers could potentially need less power than the mids, tweets. Say a dual 18" example with 95db sensitivity, that would need potentially only 50watts to keep up with the 100watts to 90db sensitive mid/tweet combo.
 
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amirm

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I also would like to see the indivisual driver contribution and see what the port noise looks like.
Oops. Just added it to the review:

index.php
 

Sancus

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I wonder if there is any difference between the 8361A and the 8351B if you use subs. I have the 8351B with subs and can't say I notice any SPL limits.

The 8351B uses the same midrange and tweeter, powered by the same amps, as the 8361A. So the main difference would be output between your sub crossover and ~320hz. This is a fairly narrow range, however, and honestly you will usually end up being sub-limited with this setup. My 12" sealed sub starts clipping on tracks with any amount of bass long, long before the 8351B does. Getting 2x Arendal 1723 2S soon which will alleviate this problem :p
 

ROOSKIE

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Time for everyone else to fall on their swords.
well to be fair there are deff a few passive speakers out there, coupled with DSP and big separate subwoofers could likely equal these for less money - even beat them. Obviously more complex but not that much more.
 

Ron Texas

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well to be fair there are deff a few passive speakers out there, coupled with DSP and big separate subwoofers could likely equal these for less money - even beat them. Obviously more complex but not that much more.
Our host does not like the idea of having to add a sub. I can understand it, because it took me a long time to get my subs working with LS50's. Many here say, just add a sub, but it's not a trivial task. The weaker the mains are in the bass, the harder it is to get it working right
 
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amirm

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Amir,

Would you give up your salon2 for a pair?
I would not but it is a close call. The Salon 2s project a larger image and similar bass capability so not an advantage over them.
 

Maiky76

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This is a review and detailed measurements of the Genelc 8361A studio monitor (powered active speaker). It is on kind loan from a member and costs US $4,995.

The 8361A looks identical to the rest of the series except massively scaled up:
View attachment 164823

It doesn't look it but it is extremely heavy. It has a handle in the back but I could barely carry it a few steps using that before having to ask my wife for help. This is a 3-way speaker with coaxial mid and tweeter helped by dual woofers hidden behind the front massive waveguide/baffle.

Measurements that you are about to see were performed using the Klippel Near-field Scanner (NFS). This is a robotic measurement system that analyzes the speaker all around and is able (using advanced mathematics and dual scan) to subtract room reflections (so where I measure it doesn't matter). It also measures the speaker at close distance ("near-field") which sharply reduces the impact of room noise. Both of these factors enable testing in ordinary rooms yet results that can be more accurate than an anechoic chamber. In a nutshell, the measurements show the actual sound coming out of the speaker independent of the room.

Measurements are compliant with latest speaker research into what can predict the speaker preference and is standardized in CEA/CTA-2034 ANSI specifications. Likewise listening tests are performed per research that shows mono listening is much more revealing of differences between speakers than stereo or multichannel.

Reference axis was the center of coaxial driver (aligned by eye). Unit was factory reset and all dip switches were in off setting. It is getting colder with the measurement room temp at 16 degrees C.

Genele 8361A Measurements
Acoustic measurements can be grouped in a way that can be perceptually analyzed to determine how good a speaker is and how it can be used in a room. This so called spinorama shows us just about everything we need to know about the speaker with respect to tonality and some flaws:

View attachment 164824

What beautiful results! It almost doesn't get any better than this. The only minor nit is slightly lower bass output. I have seen this in another Genelec speaker. Company's measurements don't have this. So either it is slight measurement error due to lower temp, or level is set slightly too low by Genelec due to their measurements not showing the same.

Due to excellent directivity index, early window reflections are all similar to on-axis but slightly rolled off as they should be:

View attachment 164825

Put the two together and we get predicted far-field response of:

View attachment 164826

Perfection! :)

Drilling into beam width shows the same precision and attention to bot on and off axis response:

View attachment 164827

View attachment 164828

Notice how not only are the red portions of the graph smooth, but that the transition to white happens with very little chaos indicating lack of diffraction errors due to cabinet, driver edges, etc.

Same praise almost goes for vertical axis naturally:

View attachment 164829

Modelling the full 3-D sound field at three critical frequencies shows the near perfection of this speaker/driver:


View attachment 164830

Forward projection is so controlled and well formed.

As I was running the sweeps for distortion tests, i could detect the deep bass and super smooth response from low to high indicating absence of distortion:

View attachment 164831

Speaker simply doesn't feel the pressure of being asked to pump out this volume so I cranked it up another 10 dB:

View attachment 164832

Now the clipping indicator was blinking and as I have seen with other Genelecs, it aims to protect the tweeter by limiting its output. Listening through my hearing protection, I thought the sound was still fine.

Waterfall shows some resonances:

View attachment 164833

Impulse response is impressive in approximating the ideal:
View attachment 164834

Assuming Klippel has measured the latency correct, we are looking at almost 5 milliseconds.

Genelec 8361A Listening Tests
While many pros buy the Genelecs for near field listening, our membership here is mostly interested in far field so that is how I tested it (pictured above). The first impression is that of clarity with slightly light tonality. I did want to see if it could benefit from some bass boost per measurements though so dialed that in:


View attachment 164835

The increased bass performance was phenomenal. So much so that in some tracks my room mode at 105 Hz became a bit much so I dialed it down as you see. Once there, I was greeted with a level of clean and deep bass which I had never experienced with any other speaker I have tested. It was like having the most perfectly integrated subwoofer next to a very powerful and capable speaker. Dynamics knew no limit. Turn it up and it simply gets louder and louder with deep notices rocking the entire room!

With the bass boost the sound was so wonderful and fun that I did not want to stop to eat dinner and then type this review! No speaker I have tested come close to this level of performance. Yet I keep looking at a speaker that is less than half the height of my own speakers! You keep wondering where the incredible bass tones are coming from.

And it is not just the bass. Midrange and treble clarity was superb.

Conclusions
Do I honestly need to write this? That this is one of the most perfectly executed speakers both objectively and subjectively. No longer does a powered speaker have a limit in either deep bass or loudness. I was testing just a single one. I can just imagine a pair being able to bring the house down with perfect clarity and dynamics. $5,000 sounds like a lot of money but you are getting multiple levels of amplification and DACs for free plus in-built DSP, room EQ, etc., etc. Buy a pair for $10K and you are done with your journey as an audiophile.

It is my absolute pleasure to strongly recommend the Genelec 8361A. I killed my back (and that of my wife's) carrying it around to measure and listen to but it was all worth it. If you can afford it, run, don't walk to get them for your system!

----------
As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Any donations are much appreciated using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/

This is a review and detailed measurements of the Genelc 8361A studio monitor (powered active speaker). It is on kind loan from a member and costs US $4,995.

The 8361A looks identical to the rest of the series except massively scaled up:
View attachment 164823

It doesn't look it but it is extremely heavy. It has a handle in the back but I could barely carry it a few steps using that before having to ask my wife for help. This is a 3-way speaker with coaxial mid and tweeter helped by dual woofers hidden behind the front massive waveguide/baffle.

Measurements that you are about to see were performed using the Klippel Near-field Scanner (NFS). This is a robotic measurement system that analyzes the speaker all around and is able (using advanced mathematics and dual scan) to subtract room reflections (so where I measure it doesn't matter). It also measures the speaker at close distance ("near-field") which sharply reduces the impact of room noise. Both of these factors enable testing in ordinary rooms yet results that can be more accurate than an anechoic chamber. In a nutshell, the measurements show the actual sound coming out of the speaker independent of the room.

Measurements are compliant with latest speaker research into what can predict the speaker preference and is standardized in CEA/CTA-2034 ANSI specifications. Likewise listening tests are performed per research that shows mono listening is much more revealing of differences between speakers than stereo or multichannel.

Reference axis was the center of coaxial driver (aligned by eye). Unit was factory reset and all dip switches were in off setting. It is getting colder with the measurement room temp at 16 degrees C.

Genele 8361A Measurements
Acoustic measurements can be grouped in a way that can be perceptually analyzed to determine how good a speaker is and how it can be used in a room. This so called spinorama shows us just about everything we need to know about the speaker with respect to tonality and some flaws:

View attachment 164824

What beautiful results! It almost doesn't get any better than this. The only minor nit is slightly lower bass output. I have seen this in another Genelec speaker. Company's measurements don't have this. So either it is slight measurement error due to lower temp, or level is set slightly too low by Genelec due to their measurements not showing the same.

Due to excellent directivity index, early window reflections are all similar to on-axis but slightly rolled off as they should be:

View attachment 164825

Put the two together and we get predicted far-field response of:

View attachment 164826

Perfection! :)

Notice how port/cabinet resonance is kept at extremely low level:
View attachment 164854

Drilling into beam width shows the same precision and attention to bot on and off axis response:

View attachment 164827

View attachment 164828

Notice how not only are the red portions of the graph smooth, but that the transition to white happens with very little chaos indicating lack of diffraction errors due to cabinet, driver edges, etc.

Same praise almost goes for vertical axis naturally:

View attachment 164829

Modelling the full 3-D sound field at three critical frequencies shows the near perfection of this speaker/driver:


View attachment 164830

Forward projection is so controlled and well formed.

As I was running the sweeps for distortion tests, i could detect the deep bass and super smooth response from low to high indicating absence of distortion:

View attachment 164831

Speaker simply doesn't feel the pressure of being asked to pump out this volume so I cranked it up another 10 dB:

View attachment 164832

Now the clipping indicator was blinking and as I have seen with other Genelecs, it aims to protect the tweeter by limiting its output. Listening through my hearing protection, I thought the sound was still fine.

Waterfall shows some resonances:

View attachment 164833

Impulse response is impressive in approximating the ideal:
View attachment 164834

Assuming Klippel has measured the latency correct, we are looking at almost 5 milliseconds.

Genelec 8361A Listening Tests
While many pros buy the Genelecs for near field listening, our membership here is mostly interested in far field so that is how I tested it (pictured above). The first impression is that of clarity with slightly light tonality. I did want to see if it could benefit from some bass boost per measurements though so dialed that in:


View attachment 164835

The increased bass performance was phenomenal. So much so that in some tracks my room mode at 105 Hz became a bit much so I dialed it down as you see. Once there, I was greeted with a level of clean and deep bass which I had never experienced with any other speaker I have tested. It was like having the most perfectly integrated subwoofer next to a very powerful and capable speaker. Dynamics knew no limit. Turn it up and it simply gets louder and louder with deep notices rocking the entire room!

With the bass boost the sound was so wonderful and fun that I did not want to stop to eat dinner and then type this review! No speaker I have tested come close to this level of performance. Yet I keep looking at a speaker that is less than half the height of my own speakers! You keep wondering where the incredible bass tones are coming from.

And it is not just the bass. Midrange and treble clarity was superb.

Conclusions
Do I honestly need to write this? That this is one of the most perfectly executed speakers both objectively and subjectively. No longer does a powered speaker have a limit in either deep bass or loudness. I was testing just a single one. I can just imagine a pair being able to bring the house down with perfect clarity and dynamics. $5,000 sounds like a lot of money but you are getting multiple levels of amplification and DACs for free plus in-built DSP, room EQ, etc., etc. Buy a pair for $10K and you are done with your journey as an audiophile.

It is my absolute pleasure to strongly recommend the Genelec 8361A. I killed my back (and that of my wife's) carrying it around to measure and listen to but it was all worth it. If you can afford it, run, don't walk to get them for your system!

----------
As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Any donations are much appreciated using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/

Hi,




Here is my take on the (unnecessary) anechoic EQ.


These EQ are anechoic EQ to get the speaker right before room integration. If you able to implement these EQs you must add EQ at LF for room integration, that is usually not optional… see hints there: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...helf-speaker-review.11144/page-26#post-800725

The raw data with corrected ER and PIR:

Score no EQ: 6.6
With Sub: 8.0
Spinorama with no EQ:
  • WoW!
  • couple of low level resonances
Genelec 8361A  No EQ Spinorama.png

Directivity:
Better stay at tweeter height
Horizontally, better toe-in the speakers by 10/15deg and have the axis crossing in front of the listening location, might help dosing the upper range.

Genelec 8361A 2D surface Directivity Contour Only Data.png
Genelec 8361A LW better data.png


EQ design:

No Need for anechoic EQ...

I have generated one EQ. The APO config file is attached.
  • The EQs are designed in the context of regular stereo use i.e. domestic environment, no warranty is provided for a near field use in a studio environment although the LW might be better suited for this purpose.
  • Tiny EQ so might not translate well on other units better do your own measurements...
  • EQ to taste still possible...

Score EQ Score: 7.1
with sub: 8.4

Code:
Genelec 8361A APO EQ 96000Hz
November122021-130727

Preamp: -0.7 dB

Filter 1: ON PK Fc 144.09,    -0.88,    2.20
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 232.09,    0.92,    2.35
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 318.36,    -1.62,    4.81
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 593.15,    -1.10,    6.95
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 1331.25,    -1.00,    6.95
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 1821.01,    -0.55,    6.99
Filter 7: ON PK Fc 2552.84,    -0.80,    6.91
Genelec 8361A EQ Design.png


Spinorama EQ Score
Genelec 8361A  Score EQ Spinorama.png


Zoom PIR-LW-ON
Genelec 8361A Zoom.png


Regression - Tonal
Genelec 8361A Regression - Tonal.png


Radar no EQ vs EQ score
No real improvements
Genelec 8361A Radar.png


The rest of the plots is attached.

EDIT:
Add one HF biquad, still theoretical...
The tonal balance then matches the the raw speaker perfectly.

Score EQ Score: 7.2
with sub: 8.5

Code:
Genelec 8361A APO EQ 2 96000Hz
November122021-132830

Preamp: -0.6 dB

Filter 1: ON PK Fc 147.09,    -0.91,    1.83
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 226.23,    0.96,    2.59
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 319.36,    -1.62,    4.81
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 593.65,    -1.10,    4.95
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 1327.25,    -1.29,    6.95
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 1822.01,    -0.73,    6.99
Filter 7: ON PK Fc 2553.84,    -0.95,    6.98
Filter 8: ON PK Fc 11774.19,    -1.00,    2.13


Genelec 8361A  Score EQ 2 Spinorama.png
 

Attachments

  • Genelec 8361A  Score EQ Spinorama.png
    Genelec 8361A Score EQ Spinorama.png
    158.2 KB · Views: 26
  • Genelec 8361A APO EQ 96000Hz.txt
    386 bytes · Views: 14
  • Genelec 8361A 2D surface Directivity Contour Data.png
    Genelec 8361A 2D surface Directivity Contour Data.png
    291.8 KB · Views: 29
  • Genelec 8361A 3D surface Vertical Directivity Data.png
    Genelec 8361A 3D surface Vertical Directivity Data.png
    456.5 KB · Views: 31
  • Genelec 8361A 3D surface Horizontal Directivity Data.png
    Genelec 8361A 3D surface Horizontal Directivity Data.png
    453.9 KB · Views: 34
  • Genelec 8361A Normalized Directivity data.png
    Genelec 8361A Normalized Directivity data.png
    321.1 KB · Views: 28
  • Genelec 8361A Raw Directivity data.png
    Genelec 8361A Raw Directivity data.png
    516.8 KB · Views: 23
  • Genelec 8361A Reflexion data.png
    Genelec 8361A Reflexion data.png
    137.1 KB · Views: 21
  • Genelec 8361A LW data.png
    Genelec 8361A LW data.png
    120.1 KB · Views: 26
  • Genelec 8361A APO EQ 2 96000Hz.txt
    435 bytes · Views: 20
Last edited:

tktran303

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I would not but it is a close call. The Salon 2s project a larger image and similar bass capability so not an advantage over them.

Thank you.

Certainly the measurements are near faultless; particularly the 106dB test and impulse response.

What parts of the spinorama or measurements are we, as a Audio enthusiast community, doing or not doing that describes large sound image.

This is interesting because I’ve noticed this too.
Is there something about sound in 3D space that we are yet to capture or understand by measurements?
 

GWolfman

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I'll have to see what one step down gives up.

Edit: looks like just one step down in the family and you're left with only 250W amplification for the bass. This includes the second step down as well.

@amirm Think a sub is needed or even useful?
 
Last edited:

beefkabob

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Thank you.

Certainly the measurements are near faultless; particularly the 106dB test and impulse response.

What parts of the spinorama or measurements are we, as a Audio enthusiast community, doing or not doing that describes large sound image.

This is interesting because I’ve noticed this too.
Is there something about sound in 3D space that we are yet to capture or understand by measurements?
The Salon2s might sound larger because they are larger. Psychoacoustics.

The Salon2s will sound different because they're a different size and shape, and they'll interact with rooms in different ways because of it.
 

tktran303

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Hi Beefkabob,

Yes I believe so too. Agreed 100%.

But my understanding is that the NFS takes 360 degree measurements. Is there something in the measurements that can say “this is a large sounding speaker”

I wonder what the Supersized Genelec would measure or sound like?


Eargasm?
 

voodooless

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I’m still wondering about the tiny voice coils on those racetrack drivers. How can they handle 350W each for a prolonged time? Luckily the magnet system is quite massive, so cooling will be relatively good. But still would expect some thermal limiting with prolonged pushing hard.

That doesn’t take away from the excellent results though. Clearly there went some engineering into it to make this work. One can only admire that.
 
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amirm

amirm

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What parts of the spinorama or measurements are we, as a Audio enthusiast community, doing or not doing that describes large sound image.
The directivity angle partially explains this. The other is sheer size of the speaker spread over nearly 6 foot in the case of my Revels.
 
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amirm

amirm

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@amirm Think a sub is needed or even useful?
Not needed at all for music playback. For movies, then LFE channel should get its own sub.
 
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