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LSR 305 and 308 discontinued.............read below

watchnerd

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The 305 woofer crosses over lower than the 308. 305 and sub is a good combo. If I already had 308 s I think I would add subs. That combo would have the highest possible spl. You can always swap out for 305s later if you wish.
1800 Hz vs 1725 Hz makes them almost the same. That being said, it's surprising that it's the same / lower than the 308 at all....
 

RayDunzl

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That combo would have the highest possible spl.
I think the 308's are good enough at moderate levels, but distortion seems (don't have much to compare to) a bit much too soon at elevated SPL.

A sweep tone doesn't care whether you have subs or not (offloading) so I don't see much help for the distortion levels in the midrange by adding subs and reducing the low range of the woofer.

You only get so much perfection in that price range (I know, price is a poor barometer of quality).

Roughly 75/85/95dB sweeps:

THD, dB relative to fundamental

upload_2018-3-12_23-50-12.png


THD, as %, Normalized to fundamental

upload_2018-3-12_23-51-59.png


The harmonics are easily heard on pure tone at the same levels.

---

At moderate levels, they're fine, I use them all the time for TV, movies, and casual listening.

They're running right now (TV), hadn't even thought about it till I looked.
 
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jdubs

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Thanks for all the feedback, fellas. I think I'm going to add subs to my 308s.

Sooooo, what subs? Is it worth it for a pair of the "matching" JBLs?

-Jim
 

Blumlein 88

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I think the 308's are good enough at moderate levels, but distortion seems (don't have much to compare to) a bit much too soon at elevated SPL.

A sweep tone doesn't care whether you have subs or not (offloading) so I don't see much help for the distortion levels in the midrange by adding subs and reducing the low range of the woofer.

You only get so much perfection in that price range (I know, price is a poor barometer of quality).

Roughly 75/85/95dB sweeps:

THD, dB relative to fundamental

View attachment 11319

THD, as %, Normalized to fundamental

View attachment 11320

The harmonics are easily heard on pure tone at the same levels.

---

At moderate levels, they're fine, I use them all the time for TV, movies, and casual listening.

They're running right now (TV), hadn't even thought about it till I looked.
Wasn't thinking of distortion so much as spl. If the amp on the woofer is the limit on woofer spl, then knocking off 80 hz and lower will make life a touch better with sound having lots of low end. They may have matched things so the woofer amp isn't the limit and instead the woofer itself is.

Using 305s in a video system in a fair size room, adding the 310 woofer was a big help with opening up the point at which the sound quality struggled on loudness. But movies have much more sub 80 hz content than most music.
 

Blumlein 88

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Thanks for all the feedback, fellas. I think I'm going to add subs to my 308s.

Sooooo, what subs? Is it worth it for a pair of the "matching" JBLs?

-Jim
The lsr 310 is pretty good. The best part is you can send it line level signals, it does the crossover, and outputs signals to your stereo speakers. This works with one or a pair.

Now if you have a way to handle the crossover to the main speakers, I think Dayton's 10s or 12s are a better deal. I've have friends with the Dayton's.

Unless you have a large room one lsr 310 is probably enough. If you think not you can add a 2nd one later. For the same price as one 310 you could buy a pair of Dayton 12s.
 

Frank Dernie

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On waveguides, there are obvious reasons for them. Dutch & Dutch uses them also for example. Still, I do think it's likely that most waveguides will color the sound in some way or the other. Form a tract with your hands and put them before your mouth when talking, and the sound will change. That's just how it is. Perhaps it might not always be audible, and there are clearly designs that do a better job than others. It seems reasonable to me that more narrow waveguides will color the sound more than shallow and broad waveguides. And many things in audio is a trade-off: The benefit of controlling dispersion may outweigh the slight coloration (which might not be audible). But I would find it very surprising if a given waveguide did not color the sound at all.
What if the sound/dispersion of the driver alone is not what is required but with a properly designed waveguide it becomes so?
In that case your analogy is correct in the inverse sense, the voice sounds different with cupped hands but this is the sound one is trying to achieve, so the change when removing the hands is, unlike with the familiarity of voice, in the wrong direction and the without cupped hands is thew coloured one.
 

Old Listener

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I think the 308's are good enough at moderate levels, but distortion seems (don't have much to compare to) a bit much too soon at elevated SPL.

A sweep tone doesn't care whether you have subs or not (offloading) so I don't see much help for the distortion levels in the midrange by adding subs and reducing the low range of the woofer.

You only get so much perfection in that price range (I know, price is a poor barometer of quality).

Roughly 75/85/95dB sweeps:

THD, dB relative to fundamental

View attachment 11319

THD, as %, Normalized to fundamental

View attachment 11320

The harmonics are easily heard on pure tone at the same levels.

---

At moderate levels, they're fine, I use them all the time for TV, movies, and casual listening.

They're running right now (TV), hadn't even thought about it till I looked.
Ray, I'm at the point of getting active monitors in home. JBL 308 IIs are one of the alternatives so your posts are especially useful to me.

Are the 75/85/95 dB levels measured at your listening position or close to the speakers?

I've found that 75-80 dB at my listening position ~9.5 feet from the speakers is as loud as I need. That translates to ~ 90 dB ~1 foot from the speakers. The room is about 21 by 15 by 9 feet with some bookshelves on three walls. It is a music only application where sound quality does matter. Are the 308s worth a try (with a 45 day return policy)?
 

RayDunzl

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Ray, I'm at the point of getting active monitors in home. JBL 308 IIs are one of the alternatives so your posts are especially useful to me.
The new ones mention new drivers, "lower harmonic distortion courtesy of an enhanced woofer design."

I suspect the electronics hardware remains the same, firmware/setup could be tweaked.

Are the 75/85/95 dB levels measured at your listening position or close to the speakers?
Those sweeps were at 10 feet with both speakers. This room is 18 x 14 x 9 with left rear corner open, drywall over concrete block on three sides, slab floor.

I've found that 75-80 dB at my listening position ~9.5 feet from the speakers is as loud as I need.
Me too until it is time to go crazy.

The room is about 21 by 15 by 9 feet with some bookshelves on three walls. It is a music only application where sound quality does matter. Are the 308s worth a try (with a 45 day return policy)?
Opinion:

They're good enough for the price. I bought mine for the garage, they've stayed in here for economy operation (10 watts instead of 300 or so from the wall outlet).

A little bass-heavy (or just imbalanced) for my critical ear (sometimes), so I trim that (beyond the trim switch on the back) via room correction. Same thing with the mains (which I listened to and enjoyed without DSP for 15 years), so maybe it's just me.

Track 1, Al DiMeola, World Sinfonia , Heart of the Immigrants - Nightclub 1960

At listening position with DSP assist:

upload_2018-3-13_14-59-35.png



Without:

upload_2018-3-13_14-53-3.png


Michael Jackson - HIStory - Track 6 - Bad

With DSP:

upload_2018-3-13_15-9-40.png


Without:

upload_2018-3-13_15-26-30.png


My use of DSP is to bring the measured frequency response of the in-room presentation closer to the measured frequency response (without DSP) of the recording itself.

It's not adjusted for me ear (or anybody elses), although, as it turns out, that's what me ear (what's left of it) currently likes.

Single channel RTA of in-room and that of the recording match very closely (with the mains, may need to look at the JBL filter settings again). See Below.

YMWV.

I tend to go astray from "common wisdom" or "recommended procedure" in many areas of life.

MartinLogan/Cheezewoofers/Krell with DSP, MJ Bad:

upload_2018-3-13_15-50-3.png
 
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Old Listener

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The new ones mention new drivers, "lower harmonic distortion courtesy of an enhanced woofer design."

I suspect the electronics hardware remains the same, firmware/setup could be tweaked.

Those sweeps were at 10 feet with both speakers. This room is 18 x 14 x 9 with left rear corner open, drywall over concrete block on three sides, slab floor.
Thanks, Ray, for your very detailed reply.

The text and the screenshots are quite useful for me.

A few days ago, I set up 36" stands and experimented with Audioengine HD6 speakers in the room where I planned to use the powered speakers I'll buy. The HD6s measured well with a single ~ 8-10 dB dip centered at 60 Hz. I spent hours listening to favorite music of various kinds. The HD6 list for $ 750 / paid and have a 5-6" woofer. I enjoyed everything I heard.

Today I listened to the same music through the current speakers ( twenty year old Waveform Mach 17s.) They are 3-way active speakers with crossover and 6 channels of amplification external to the speakers. Each speaker has 2 12" woofers, a ~ 5" midrange and a ~ 1" tweeter. They measure very well and sounds very good. Everything sounded great with more detail than I heard through the HD6s. I'm not sure how much money I have to spend to get performance that is at the level of my current speakers.

I've got some more tests to run and then I have to decide whether to start ordering new speakers. I'm not much on buying several alternatives with the idea of returning all but one pair.
 

RayDunzl

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To me, 305/308 are fairly inexpensive speakers. I originally bought mine to have something somewhat portable.

Your Waveforms, $6,995 in 1997 → $10,851.66 in 2018... plus amplification and whatever else they entail...

I'm not sure how much money I have to spend to get performance that is at the level of my current speakers.
Don't know. I don't get out much.

Are you replacing the Waveforms? If so, why, after all this time, if you like them?

Or is this for a new system?
 

Sal1950

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Are you replacing the Waveforms? If so, why, after all this time, if you like them?
:eek: That's gonna be a tuff rig to surpass substantially, gonna be pricey.
 

Fitzcaraldo215

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Thanks, Ray, for your very detailed reply.

The text and the screenshots are quite useful for me.

A few days ago, I set up 36" stands and experimented with Audioengine HD6 speakers in the room where I planned to use the powered speakers I'll buy. The HD6s measured well with a single ~ 8-10 dB dip centered at 60 Hz. I spent hours listening to favorite music of various kinds. The HD6 list for $ 750 / paid and have a 5-6" woofer. I enjoyed everything I heard.

Today I listened to the same music through the current speakers ( twenty year old Waveform Mach 17s.) They are 3-way active speakers with crossover and 6 channels of amplification external to the speakers. Each speaker has 2 12" woofers, a ~ 5" midrange and a ~ 1" tweeter. They measure very well and sounds very good. Everything sounded great with more detail than I heard through the HD6s. I'm not sure how much money I have to spend to get performance that is at the level of my current speakers.

I've got some more tests to run and then I have to decide whether to start ordering new speakers. I'm not much on buying several alternatives with the idea of returning all but one pair.
Yes, the Waveform's were Peter Aczel's (The Audio Critic) rave favorite for awhile decades ago until he discovered Linkwitz, also multi-amped and externally xovered.
 

Blumlein 88

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Waveforms? Man, if I had some Waveforms, I'd be thinking DSP. Waveforms were a formidable design in many ways. A little extra sophistication with a little DSP is what I would do. Not replacement, more like enhancement. Not sure which amps you are using, but maybe switching them out for some quality class D to ease the electricity drain. Combined with DSP that would be nice, nice, nice!
 

Old Listener

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To me, 305/308 are fairly inexpensive speakers. I originally bought mine to have something somewhat portable.

Your Waveforms, $6,995 in 1997 → $10,851.66 in 2018... plus amplification and whatever else they entail...


Are you replacing the Waveforms? If so, why, after all this time, if you like them?

Or is this for a new system?
I've been interested in good sound for ~50 years. My interest in tinkering and troubleshooting as a recreational activity is long gone.

Some recent problems:

1. Ground loop related noise through the speakers. Happens with Laptop -> USB DAC -> external crossover
Didn't happen with Intel NUC -> USB DAC -> external crossover
Doesn't happen with laptop -> USB DAC _> HD6 speakers

2. No sound in one speaker. Bad connector in a passive volume control used to match DAC output level to external crossover. I had to find another way to adjust DAC output.

3. Power supply for the external crossover doesn't come on reliably. Power cord got a little loose.

4. hum coming from crossover power supply. I've lived with this for ~ 20 years. Swapping power supplies didn't fix the problem. Bryston (who manufactured the crossover) had no further help for me.

That's a sample of problems from the last couple of weeks.

The Waveforms were my highpoint in striving for the best sound quality. Now, I want something that just works when I want to listen to music without giving up on sound quality completely.
 

Blumlein 88

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I've been interested in good sound for ~50 years. My interest in tinkering and troubleshooting as a recreational activity is long gone.

Some recent problems:

1. Ground loop related noise through the speakers. Happens with Laptop -> USB DAC -> external crossover
Didn't happen with Intel NUC -> USB DAC -> external crossover
Doesn't happen with laptop -> USB DAC _> HD6 speakers

2. No sound in one speaker. Bad connector in a passive volume control used to match DAC output level to external crossover. I had to find another way to adjust DAC output.

3. Power supply for the external crossover doesn't come on reliably. Power cord got a little loose.

4. hum coming from crossover power supply. I've lived with this for ~ 20 years. Swapping power supplies didn't fix the problem. Bryston (who manufactured the crossover) had no further help for me.

That's a sample of problems from the last couple of weeks.

The Waveforms were my highpoint in striving for the best sound quality. Now, I want something that just works when I want to listen to music without giving up on sound quality completely.
May I suggest some middle of the range Revels. Those are very, very good. Take advantage of the modern research into what works well in most places for most people. They aren't terribly expensive. You would need a good amp for two channels. No more. So laptop>USB DAC> power amps (maybe some you have are fine)> Revel speakers. This will be excellent sound, not too hair shirted at all, and not too terribly dear in terms of money or effort to get the good sound from them.

Revel F35 are about $1600/pr new. F36 are $2k/pr new. Some used ones crop up from time to time. Floor standers that aren't very large, have nice appearance, work very well etc etc. If you wanted the extra slam partner with some okay subwoofers and you have it all (almost).
 

Old Listener

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Waveforms? Man, if I had some Waveforms, I'd be thinking DSP. Waveforms were a formidable design in many ways. A little extra sophistication with a little DSP is what I would do. Not replacement, more like enhancement. Not sure which amps you are using, but maybe switching them out for some quality class D to ease the electricity drain. Combined with DSP that would be nice, nice, nice!
Well, I think about implementing the crossover with DSP every so often but I'm not looking for such a project.

I switched from a high-bias Class AB 6 channel to a Class D 7 channel amp a few years ago.
 

Old Listener

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May I suggest some middle of the range Revels. Those are very, very good. Take advantage of the modern research into what works well in most places for most people. They aren't terribly expensive. You would need a good amp for two channels. No more. So laptop>USB DAC> power amps (maybe some you have are fine)> Revel speakers. This will be excellent sound, not too hair shirted at all, and not too terribly dear in terms of money or effort to get the good sound from them.

Revel F35 are about $1600/pr new. F36 are $2k/pr new. Some used ones crop up from time to time. Floor standers that aren't very large, have nice appearance, work very well etc etc. If you wanted the extra slam partner with some okay subwoofers and you have it all (almost).
Your suggestion makes me think. I've been simplifying my audio systems for some years and going to active monitors for the library system was the last step.

I haven't had unpowered speakers in the house for 20 years. A burglar stole my library speakers and the office speakers. The Waveforms were the replacement for the stolen speakers.

Since I do have amps on hand, the Revel speakers would be cost effective. I kept a two channel power amp for years before finally giving it away. However, I have a 7 channel Class-D amp and a 6 channel high bias Class AB amp that could be used. I'd want to remove some modules from the AB amp to cut down heat production.

Do you think that the F35 or F36 would produce better sound quality than JBL 705Ps or Dynaudio Lyd48 monitors?

I can see cost and functionality advantages in both directions:

Revels: no cost of amplification in the speaker product, no stands
Active monitors: cheaper cabinet cost and lower markup through the distribution channel. settings for sensitivity and near wall placement
The JBL 705P has user accessible DSP which would be quite useful for room response adjustments.
 

Blumlein 88

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Your suggestion makes me think. I've been simplifying my audio systems for some years and going to active monitors for the library system was the last step.

I haven't had unpowered speakers in the house for 20 years. A burglar stole my library speakers and the office speakers. The Waveforms were the replacement for the stolen speakers.

Since I do have amps on hand, the Revel speakers would be cost effective. I kept a two channel power amp for years before finally giving it away. However, I have a 7 channel Class-D amp and a 6 channel high bias Class AB amp that could be used. I'd want to remove some modules from the AB amp to cut down heat production.

Do you think that the F35 or F36 would produce better sound quality than JBL 705Ps or Dynaudio Lyd48 monitors?

I can see cost and functionality advantages in both directions:

Revels: no cost of amplification in the speaker product, no stands
Active monitors: cheaper cabinet cost and lower markup through the distribution channel. settings for sensitivity and near wall placement
The JBL 705P has user accessible DSP which would be quite useful for room response adjustments.
Well other than reading about the 705 and 708 I've not heard them in action. What I think the Revel will do with a solid amp is be less constrained on loudness. It will have that quality of ease when playing loud like larger speakers. Even good smaller speakers seem to cloud up or not quite have the aplomb that larger speakers do. The Revels are made to similar design criteria as the JBLs. They may not play necessarily louder, but are using a larger number of drivers and this seems to make such setups handle loudness better most of the time.

The Dynaudio is also likely very good, but I've only read about it too. I suspect in general smaller monitor speakers don't have the easy open quality at higher volumes in larger rooms. If used within a couple meters as monitors its not a problem.

DSP is very good, but it depends upon the owner to use it to good effect. The Revels are the old school approach. But they do perform very well and without much bother. Don't know if the 705 or Lyd48 could edge them out or not. I do think it would be edging out and not a huge sound quality difference upon playback. I like active speakers, but laptop>USB dac> power amp>Revels is pretty simple. Crutchfields sells Revel speakers. You get a 60 day period to return them. You pay $75 to ship speakers back if you get a return. But that is reasonable to try them out at your house.
 

Old Listener

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Well other than reading about the 705 and 708 I've not heard them in action. What I think the Revel will do with a solid amp is be less constrained on loudness. It will have that quality of ease when playing loud like larger speakers. Even good smaller speakers seem to cloud up or not quite have the aplomb that larger speakers do. The Revels are made to similar design criteria as the JBLs. They may not play necessarily louder, but are using a larger number of drivers and this seems to make such setups handle loudness better most of the time.

The Dynaudio is also likely very good, but I've only read about it too. I suspect in general smaller monitor speakers don't have the easy open quality at higher volumes in larger rooms. If used within a couple meters as monitors its not a problem.

DSP is very good, but it depends upon the owner to use it to good effect. The Revels are the old school approach. But they do perform very well and without much bother. Don't know if the 705 or Lyd48 could edge them out or not. I do think it would be edging out and not a huge sound quality difference upon playback. I like active speakers, but laptop>USB dac> power amp>Revels is pretty simple. Crutchfields sells Revel speakers. You get a 60 day period to return them. You pay $75 to ship speakers back if you get a return. But that is reasonable to try them out at your house.
The points you make about more drivers and larger speakers are very sound in theory. I experimented with the HD6s as a surrogate for the stand mounted monitors that I might buy. Always good to supplement theory with experiment. The HD6s produced very enjoyable sound and no extra in-room response problems.

The JBL 705P might be a bit of a gamble. The 708P would be less of a gamble but I didn't want to spend $ 4000 for a pair. The Dynaudio LYD 48s are 3 way systems with 8 inch woofers. Dynaudio describes the optimum leading distance for thee monitors as up to 2.5 meters. I'd be listening from about 3 meters. Might be OK.

I hate to buy and return stuff. However, if I'm serious about listening to the 705P or the LYD 48, I'll probably have to order and return them if they aren't right for me. I've been working myself up to ordering one or more pairs of monitors for several months. There are several local places that seem to carry Revel speakers.

I'm glad to have DSP as a tool for addressing in-room response problems. I use a pair of filters in the JRiver player software in my office system to fix low frequency peaks and dips. I expect to use DSP to solve problems that I can't address with optimizing the speaker and listening positions.
 
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Been listening to the LSR305p Mk II for an hour so far. I tell you, nothing prepares you for the stellar fidelity these budget speakers produce! On my reference tracks it can be stunning, easily outperforming high-end speakers. I will do a review in a day or two when I have more miles on them. For now, I have to keep shaking my head on the level of detail, and absence of distortion. Level wise, I am listening at -22 to 0-15 db or so. Plenty of reserve power. I can't get them distorted before I get uncomfortable with the loudness!

The only downfall is that it absolutely will not play deep bass. It acts as if it is not even there. I think they may have smartly filtered that out. I will do some measurements to figure out. I should say though I have them out in open room in a very large space. Against the walls it may do better.

Mind you as soon as bass frequencies go up some, it reproduces them with incredible clarity. So it is not like a little whiny bookshelf speaker.

Absolutely, absolutely, incredible value and performance here! I don't care what system you have now. You need to get a pair of these and listen to them.

I am driving them with the Topping DX7 which makes a fantastic package with them. I hooked up a sub to the unbalanced output and let the balanced drive the LSRs. That gave me the lows but measurements and tuning is necessary for best performance there. Hard to imagine that this is a $600 package from DAC to amp and speakers!
You've sold me on these then! I've got LSR 308s in the bedroom for movies, but I really need a little speaker system for our living room and a plain ole music listening system. This might be exactly what I go with. Price is good and every one is in agreement that the bass is a little tighter vs the older models. I also see that with a -10 dB output it'll go down to like 43ish. Not too bad, what do you think of the 6.5 size vs the 3? Is it worth the extra 50 per unit

As to the comments on the 308 and their distortion, I do agree. As they get a little louder in our moderately sized bedroom I can hear some break up, nothing to major. Though again aside from the lack of low end, most people feel the smaller models do better with detail. So here's to hoping that stands true. Either way I'll have a little set soon enough and have my own thoughts on them!

Wife & I just looked at our living room and I've already got the perfect space for them! But a quick question for you guys, we have a very high slanted ceiling in our living room. My thoughts are to have the speakers on that back wall there the ceiling is the highest and aim'ed at our door where the ceiling is the lowest. There's also a window back there. Now for the little 305s the space isn't too big, maybe 10 feet long and 12 feet wide, should I treat my windows prior or will it not make too big of an impact
 
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