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JBL HDI-4500 Center Channel Speaker Review

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hardisj

hardisj

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I do wonder why you don't see something like this more often, which looks like a decent compromise (Focal Twin 6 Be... I think Infinity used to have have similar ones at one point):
View attachment 121627

Something like this?...

DSC00493.JPG
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:D :D ;)
 

Music1969

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I say all of that to say this: when evaluating a horizontal center channel you know you are already starting with a disadvantage compared to a typical bookshelf or floorstanding speaker. As I said, if one is able, they should orient the center channel vertically (unless, in the rare case, the speaker is designed solely to be oriented horizontally).

My KEF centre channel doesn't have this directivity issue with coaxial tweeter and mid driver.

But of course I don't know how it measures overall in other things. Might be garbage in FR and distortion etc.
 

MZKM

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I do wonder why you don't see something like this more often, which looks like a decent compromise (Focal Twin 6 Be... I think Infinity used to have have similar ones at one point):
View attachment 121627
I do wonder how much better the raised tweeter design performs in terms of horizontal off-axis (and thanks to Erin we will see).
 

Mnyb

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Wonder if not speaker mfg is digging a hole for them self here .

True 3 way for L & R is rare in lower price classes ( or any price class ) these days and the thing you see are 2 ways or some 2.5 way .

Can a 3 way center match well with 2 way or 2.5 way L & R or is then so that you better have all 3 front speakers as tru 3 ways ?

That's another topic we should have here. where are all 3 way speakers theses days ? ( make that discussion another tread )
 

pierre

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Great review as always.

Would you mind posting the data for this speaker too? Also I may have missed it, but I also would like to have the data for the KEF R3. And better and better, can the NFS generate / export the impulse response of speakers? or the phase? That would be great. Format is not important if documented.

Thanks.

P.S.: waiting for the twins review, I had one, replaced by Trio Be6 for the better.
 
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hardisj

hardisj

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Would you mind posting the data for this speaker too?

https://www.dropbox.com/s/vym1hh2hm3olhze/JBL HDI-4500.7z?dl=0


Also I may have missed it, but I also would like to have the data for the KEF R3.

It was buried in that thread. Here's the post with the link:






And better and better, can the NFS generate / export the impulse response of speakers? or the phase?

That requires a separate module from Klippel. I'll see what I can do, though.
 

MZKM

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Preference Rating
SCORE: 3.8
SCORE w/ sub: 5.9

Sensitivity: 88.5dB (300Hz-3kHz ; spec: 90dB)
Frequency response: +/-6.6dB 80Hz-20kHz

Take care of that 1kHz resonance and it should sound great.

I am assuming they are using 1kHz for sensitivity. I didn’t ask JBL but I did ask Harman and here is the response:
"Our sensitivity ratings are based on the 1 watt voltage onto the nominal impedance (so, 2.83V for 8 Ohm, etc.) curve in our chamber. The design engineer reports the sensitivity based on the curve. We calculate the nominal impedance per industry standard – 1.15 x impedance at the mid-bass minimum, rounded to the closest of 4 Ohm, 6 Ohm, or 8 Ohm. Since we have had many varying engineers over the years, I have seen various methods by the engineer in our files, including reporting peak sensitivity. Having said that though, most of the engineers call out an average sensitivity, trying to pick a value between dips and peaks over as much of the band from 100 Hz to 20 kHz as possible, depending on smoothness of the high frequency reproduction. We typically don’t look at the level below 100 Hz for this because it is so room dependent, but we do aim for close to linear in our tunings, so this band doesn’t affect the overall average anyway. So, this is more of a C-weighted visual average over the full frequency band. It is done on axis because that is typical by reviewers. Since many companies aren’t as rigorous as this and many don’t follow the proper method to calculate nominal impedance, it is better to experience the speaker than to hold this reported number as an absolute indicator of what a speaker will actually do."

- Tom Pfister (Field Support Engineer)
 
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richard12511

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pierre

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Here is an EQ for this center speaker:

Code:
EQ for JBL HDI-4500 computed from ASR data
Preference Score 3.6 with EQ 5.8
Generated from http://github.com/pierreaubert/spinorama/generate_peqs.py v0.7
Dated: 2021-04-05-10:10:29

Preamp: -2.8 dB

Filter  1: ON PK Fc   546 Hz Gain +3.13 dB Q 3.41
Filter  2: ON PK Fc 14428 Hz Gain -4.34 dB Q 2.02
Filter  3: ON PK Fc  1915 Hz Gain +2.34 dB Q 5.50
Filter  4: ON PK Fc 10402 Hz Gain +3.55 dB Q 12.00
Filter  5: ON PK Fc  6005 Hz Gain -1.10 dB Q 1.02
Filter  6: ON PK Fc  9741 Hz Gain +0.98 dB Q 12.00
Filter  7: ON PK Fc  1560 Hz Gain +1.38 dB Q 12.00
Filter  8: ON PK Fc  2966 Hz Gain +1.21 dB Q 12.00
Filter  9: ON PK Fc   603 Hz Gain -1.19 dB Q 12.00
Filter 10: ON PK Fc   452 Hz Gain -0.85 dB Q 12.00
Filter 11: ON PK Fc   392 Hz Gain +1.32 dB Q 12.00
Filter 12: ON PK Fc   693 Hz Gain +0.85 dB Q 2.68
Filter 13: ON PK Fc  1118 Hz Gain -1.25 dB Q 12.00
Filter 14: ON PK Fc  1446 Hz Gain -0.38 dB Q 12.00
Filter 15: ON PK Fc   694 Hz Gain -1.25 dB Q 12.00
Filter 16: ON PK Fc   992 Hz Gain +1.56 dB Q 12.00
Filter 17: ON PK Fc  3177 Hz Gain +0.49 dB Q 12.00
Filter 18: ON PK Fc  3658 Hz Gain -0.77 dB Q 5.57
Filter 19: ON PK Fc  6105 Hz Gain +0.54 dB Q 12.00
Filter 20: ON PK Fc  2390 Hz Gain -0.92 dB Q 12.00

Visually:
filters0.png


Here is the spinorama with/without EQ:
filters1.png


same with the PIR which get smoother:
filters2.png
 

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hardisj

hardisj

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I have updated my reviews with a linearity metric and a statement regarding sensitivity/linearity to help people more easily see. I was doing this before but forgot to include this in my latest reviews.


The mean SPL on-axis is 88.58 dB (300Hz to 3kHz).
Response linearity is -4.37/+3.01 dB (80Hz to 16kHz).

1617913239014.png
 
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hardisj

hardisj

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Huh, I get 88.49dB (using Pascal conversion) from frequency 307.62Hz to 2928Hz.

Eh, 0.09dB difference isn't really worth either of sweating over. Could just be in the way it is calculated in matlab vs excel.
 

tifune

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I say all of that to say this: when evaluating a horizontal center channel you know you are already starting with a disadvantage compared to a typical bookshelf or floorstanding speaker. As I said, if one is able, they should orient the center channel vertically (unless, in the rare case, the speaker is designed solely to be oriented horizontally).

Hope you get to review the KEF RC2 one day Erin. Given the off (vertical) axis placement realities of horizontal centers, I think the concentric design would prove to be of substantial benefit, especially if it performs in line with the R3.

This is, in a roundabout way, what lead me to this thread. I've been wondering, does the R5 only offer more bass due to cabinet size? On paper + given the nature of a concentric design, R2C and R5 are basically the same speaker. In my specific case I have a R2C I barely use, because for TV/movies R3's image so well that I get a phantom center with almost no effort. Even in cases where that's not sufficient (e.g. content with a lot of whispering like A Quiet Place), Denon's dialog enhancer gets me where I need to be.

Additionally, my system was built around 2ch upmixing and I have yet to find any upmixer that utilizes a center to my liking. The sound always seems to get 'pushed inward' as if the shared L/R, mono-ish aspects (snares, basslines, lead vocals) are sucked out of L/R and placed solely in the center. Dolby center spread kind of has the right idea, as well as offers superior front wide support compared to Neural:X, but overall my preference is Auro3D w/ center off.

To that end, I was considering getting another R2C and bringing my own stands + small sub to make a pair of R5's for use elsewhere but I can't find any vertical directivity plots of R2C to confirm my suspicions. @hardisj are you interested in testing R2C? If so, PM me and let's figure something out. Maybe the result will inspire someone to submit R8a's :) Not many comprehensive Atmos measurements out there AFAIK

Strange to me Kef is so forthcoming with FR on the R-line except for that one model, perhaps they feel it might come off as a poor performer if consumers don't understand it's intended use case. Just spit-balling here as I have been told by one well-known (in the USA) manufacturer "we stopped publishing [CEA] because it just confuses people."
 
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