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JBL L82 Classic: Spinorama and Measurements

Doodski

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the profit margin is likely $1-1.5K
The profit margins are nowhere near that high. I know I retailed home audio for 9 years. High profit speakers at full retail are about 36%-40% and by the time the dealer gives a deal they usually average ~32%-34% at the years end for a good salesperson. If it's a lower markup speaker line then you can calculate accordingly. The dealers usually have a cost of doing business of about 24% for a audio dealer dependant on location overhead and other factors.
 

ROOSKIE

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The profit margins are nowhere near that high. I know I retailed home audio for 9 years. High profit speakers at full retail are about 36%-40% and by the time the dealer gives a deal they usually average ~32%-34% at the years end for a good salesperson. If it's a lower markup speaker line then you can calculate accordingly. The dealers usually have a cost of doing business of about 24% for a audio dealer dependant on location overhead and other factors.
Weird, maybe things have changed but when I was working at Audio King in the Twin cities 20 years ago the average mark-up for passive speakers was around 50% once you climbed out of the lower price points.
We had stuff that was 70% mark-up (passive speakers, not electronics - some tv's at the time had effectively near zero mark-up) and that wasn't due to non-competitive pricing. My employee discount was cost plus a overhead/handing factor and I usually got 40-60% off on speakers. (not to mention the very different but awesome direct purchases deals from the manufacturer)
Anyway we sold speaker product all the time for 20%+ off retail when negotiating a sale.
Not to long ago I purchased a set of speakers from Crutchfield on a price match to an Amazon sale. $900 speakers for $425, no clearance, no nationwide manufacturer promo. I asked when price matching if Crutchfield was still making a profit having to ship them to me and match Amazon. (I didn't want Crutchfield to take a loss, though I preferred supporting them) They said yes, not much but yes it was still worth the sale. Now obviously I don't expect 50% off, but at more than 50% discount on that pair plus free shipping they still had room to eek out a positive sale.
I mean there is an opportunity to help someone make a living and at the same time get a nice price, especially as this would be a mater of slapping a shipping label on a speaker set that otherwise I won't buy at full price and would not return (unless defective/damaged).
 

sweetchaos

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Today, JBL released the smaller 5.25" woofer of their classic series.
1627962206030.png

JBL L52 Classic:
https://www.jblsynthesis.com/products/loudspeakers/series/classic-series/L52.html

The JBL L52 Classic is packed and sold in mirror-imaged pairs and will be available for the holidays beginning in Q4 of 2021 with a retail price of $1,000/pair.

Looks decent. I'd love to see a review.
 
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napilopez

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Today, JBL released the smaller 5.25" woofer of their classic series.
View attachment 145189
JBL L52 Classic:
https://www.jblsynthesis.com/products/loudspeakers/series/classic-series/L52.html

The JBL L52 Classic is packed and sold in mirror-imaged pairs and will be available for the holidays beginning in Q4 of 2021 with a retail price of $1,000/pair.

Looks decent. I'd love to see a review.

Well it should hopefully be able to avoid the midrange messiness at that size! Unless it's purely intentional
 

ROOSKIE

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Sweet. That looks pretty cool to me. Thanks for the info @sweetchaos

Here are some specs in a screenshot
1627966671207.png
 
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TimW

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I wonder how performance will compare to the JBL Stage A130. Interesting that they are using a 3/4" tweeter when most other 5 1/4" 2-way speakers they produce use a 1".
 

Tom C

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Well it should hopefully be able to avoid the midrange messiness at that size! Unless it's purely intentional
Are you referring to the dip in FR at the crossover frequency? It seems to be present in several recent JBL designs. I wondered if maybe it’s intentionally there to improve directivity, since the DI curve looks its lumpiest in that range.
 
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napilopez

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Are you referring to the dip in FR at the crossover frequency? It seems to be present in several recent JBL designs. I wondered if maybe it’s intentionally there to improve directivity, since the DI curve looks its lumpiest in that range.
According to this review of the 4349, JBL says the dip was intentional for at least that speaker.

"JBL comments: Notice that the design actually intentionally includes the slight dip in the sound power near crossover, as it helps accentuate and make the high frequencies sound more detailed without actually raising their level (as in our older studio monitors)."

At this point, I'm quite sure it's an intentional design choice as it's present in most of the 'retro' designs' but not the more modern-looking models like the HDI series or the pro series monitors.
 

ROOSKIE

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According to this review of the 4349, JBL says the dip was intentional for at least that speaker.

"JBL comments: Notice that the design actually intentionally includes the slight dip in the sound power near crossover, as it helps accentuate and make the high frequencies sound more detailed without actually raising their level (as in our older studio monitors)."

At this point, I'm quite sure it's an intentional design choice as it's present in most of the 'retro' designs' but not the more modern-looking models like the HDI series or the pro series monitors.
I agree.
I also like it.
I have both the 4309 and L82 here. Love the sound of both. So good.
 

Nicknack

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Seriously considering the L82, since it has minimum 7Ohm impedance across freqs and 88dB sensitivity. Also I saw some reviews saying that these can play at low level ie at 60-70dB volume and not lose detail, an at the same time can do loud 96dB with low distortion. Ie some speakers can't really play at low volume well.
Is it as good or better than the 4309 that Amir reviewed?
Aesthetically, the L82 is just right for placing on the short floorstands in my office room of about 19x15feet
Saw this review with some impedance measurements. Not sure why it's reported to have only 83dB sensitivity. https://stereo-magazine.com/review/jbl-l82-classic-review
 
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napilopez

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Seriously considering the L82, since it has minimum 7Ohm impedance across freqs and 88dB sensitivity. Also I saw some reviews saying that these can play at low level ie at 60-70dB volume and not lose detail, an at the same time can do loud 96dB with low distortion. Ie some speakers can't really play at low volume well.
Is it as good or better than the 4309 that Amir reviewed?
Aesthetically, the L82 is just right for placing on the short floorstands in my office room of about 19x15feet
Saw this review with some impedance measurements. Not sure why it's reported to have only 83dB sensitivity. https://stereo-magazine.com/review/jbl-l82-classic-review
I preferred the L82 to the 4309, but I have had a consistent preference for wider directivity/shallower waveguide designs for most of the speakers I've listened to. I also like that you can "tweak" the soundstage by having the tweeters on the outside or inside.

And of course, you're also getting an 8 inch woofer compared to a 6.5-inch woofer. Bigger speaker, wider directivity = win for me, even if the 4309 performs a little more technically perfect when it comes to directivity.
 

Nicknack

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Thanks for the comments with your personal experiences regarding the L82 vs 4309. Found a set of L82 in bright blue at 35% discount. Couldn't resist and pulled the trigger. Can't wait to test these out with variety of music from heavy metal, blues, vocal and some piano concertos.
I do like the styling of the 4309s but it's only 4Ohm impedance and as you pointed out it's on the small side. The 4349s, I was eyeing for awhile until I saw the test results on ASR.
 
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napilopez

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Thanks for the comments with your personal experiences regarding the L82 vs 4309. Found a set of L82 in bright blue at 35% discount. Couldn't resist and pulled the trigger. Can't wait to test these out with variety of music from heavy metal, blues, vocal and some piano concertos.
I do like the styling of the 4309s but it's only 4Ohm impedance and as you pointed out it's on the small side. The 4349s, I was eyeing for awhile until I saw the test results on ASR.

Looking forward to hearing your impressions; curious if they'll be similar to mine as not many have heard these here.
 

Garlic

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Hello,

Would installing them horizontally make a big "sound" difference ? anyone try it ?
I'm about to order them and wondering how i will install them in my bookshelf... ideally horizontally for space purposes...

thanks !
 

ROOSKIE

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Hello,

Would installing them horizontally make a big "sound" difference ? anyone try it ?
I'm about to order them and wondering how i will install them in my bookshelf... ideally horizontally for space purposes...

thanks !
Yes, the dispersion will be affected, they are definitely designed for upright use. I wouldn't do it myself with speakers I paid $$$ for.

Also these are really meant to be pulled out from a wall on stands. What kind of bookshelf situation do plan to use?

The front port will allow them to be able to be right near wall but these have really good bass response pulled out away from the walls and so I think they may be a bit over full near the wall.

Seriously considering the L82, since it has minimum 7Ohm impedance across freqs and 88dB sensitivity. Also I saw some reviews saying that these can play at low level ie at 60-70dB volume and not lose detail, an at the same time can do loud 96dB with low distortion. Ie some speakers can't really play at low volume well.
Is it as good or better than the 4309 that Amir reviewed?
Aesthetically, the L82 is just right for placing on the short floorstands in my office room of about 19x15feet
Saw this review with some impedance measurements. Not sure why it's reported to have only 83dB sensitivity. https://stereo-magazine.com/review/jbl-l82-classic-review
Thanks for the comments with your personal experiences regarding the L82 vs 4309. Found a set of L82 in bright blue at 35% discount. Couldn't resist and pulled the trigger. Can't wait to test these out with variety of music from heavy metal, blues, vocal and some piano concertos.
I do like the styling of the 4309s but it's only 4Ohm impedance and as you pointed out it's on the small side. The 4349s, I was eyeing for awhile until I saw the test results on ASR.

The L82 speaker has fairly low sensitivity.
The trade off is the woofer and design is simply superb. Extremely low distortion in the bass and able to handle vast amounts of power. Excellent room filling bass to 40hrz in my 12x23+ room.
I felt they were superb speakers for anyone who will crank it up(use a 100watt+ amp for this) but wants or prefers a smaller than tower sized speaker. The L82's are not so small for monitors but they are not big in grand scheme of audio. Really nice IMHO.
I had another speaker here with a 6.5" woofer and similar appearing bass response in measurements and in room MMM captures yet when actually playing music the L82 easily and I mean easily outdid that speaker in bass and dynamics at higher SPL.
That 8" design is a big gain over even great 6.5's in my space.
Anyway there is no question that JBL engineered these to handle very loud SPL's while still having HiFi characteristics.
I did turn/tilt the tweeter down so it is exactly -1db by 10k via the Knob

The 4309 is much smaller physically and does not have the bass response of the L82. That said if someone is high passing to subs around 80hrz-90hrz then the 4309 can play extremely loudly with a lot of life and at the same is somehow quite refined sounding and tonally correct. I have had no issues that some of the measurements here would suggest. They are very good.

I prefer the 4309's to the L82's as I have subs and really like the sound they produce. I do use them with the -0.5db setting which seem minimal and it is, but seems to be a good choice despite the tiny differences.

It was mentioned that the L82's can have the tweeter on the inside or outside. In my space they sounded best on the outside and actually the difference was not particularly subtle. At one point after I had swapped them back I kept thinking why do these sound so good now? And at another point I was think hmmm these are not what I remembered feeling. I did a little back and forth and the tweeter to the outside in my space was clearly superior to my taste. It was quite obvious there was a difference on most tracks I tried. I would play around.

I also have the L52's here and have only listened 3 times or so so far. So far they are incredible. Really. I need to do some further listening but as of now these are impressing me. They are very small and don't have much bass in my space but man are they good from 100hrz up. Tweeter is turned/tilled down -0.5db by 10k via the knob(Lpad).
 

Garlic

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Yes, the dispersion will be affected, they are definitely designed for upright use. I wouldn't do it myself with speakers I paid $$$ for.

Also these are really meant to be pulled out from a wall on stands. What kind of bookshelf situation do plan to use?

The front port will allow them to be able to be right near wall but these have really good bass response pulled out away from the walls and so I think they may be a bit over full near the wall.
thanks for the answer !

Unfortunately for me, no choice , they have to go in the bookshelf, WAF and all that ;)

What amp are you using to drive them ?

Is 2x180W (boxem 4215 / NAD C298 or similar) sufficient ? I like to listen loud, wondering if going dual mono is worth it...
 
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ROOSKIE

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thanks for the answer !

Unfortunately for me, no choice , they have to go in the bookshelf, WAF and all that ;)

What amp qre you sing to drive them ?

Is 2x180W (boxem 4215 / NAD C298 or similar) sufficient ? I like to listen loud, wondering if going dual mono is worth it...
Yes, I think and feel that Either of those amps will be great.
I dual mono is only worth it if you have a larger space and plan to really fill it with very high SPL. The difference between 200watts and 400 is only 3db. With 200watts the speaker is near the edge of what is possible for it, however that said as someone who cranks it frequently I do like having extra power just so I know the amp will not hard clip and I also protect the woofer in my 2-ways. If you want to do that I recommend you high pass the L82's at 28-30hrz. This will keep the cone from over excursion at ultra high volumes with ultra deep bass. (it is an 8 after all and not a 15 inch woofer)

Within my space I was able to use the L82's in such a way at volumes above what I would ever normally use and my normal usage includes some pretty rocking sessions. I did supplement with 15" subs below about 45hrz but even when using the L82's without the extra subs I always enjoyed myself completely.
 

LouB

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So, I was thinking of a DIY clone of L82's but now just buying them. But an open box set of L100 are avaible for about 600 bucks more than the L82's there at 2K a pair the L100 2.6K pair.
Question is, if the L100's are a better choice for me ? The listing room is fairly big, music only & don't listen too really loud music very often. In fact I'd take a speaker that sounds better at lower volumes than something that sounds best when really driven. I think paying 600 more for the L100's would be worth it but only because usually there 2K more, not the best reason to pick gear for sure.
Thanks
 
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