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Neumann KH420 Review (Studio Monitor)

Rate this speaker:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 2 0.5%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 2 0.5%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 26 6.2%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 392 92.9%

  • Total voters
    422

Frank Dernie

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*Well the drivers are 10 years old
*KH310 has the same drivers minus the woofer and costs less than half
*The Ones drivers are developed from the ground up, cabinets also and are new
*Aluminum of this quality should cost more than MDF
So i don't think I'm 100% wrong here
Obviously these are just assumptions but other opinions are also just assumptions
Sorry, bit grumpy this morning, I am not a big fan of wild speculation from enthusiasts on the internet who are technically ignorant and you, I am afraid seem to be incapable of stopping yourself producing a huge amount of it.
Sorry to be blunt.
 

mmi

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*Well the drivers are 10 years old
*KH310 has the same drivers minus the woofer and costs less than half
*The Ones drivers are developed from the ground up, cabinets also and are new
*Aluminum of this quality should cost more than MDF
So i don't think I'm 100% wrong here
Obviously these are just assumptions but other opinions are also just assumptions
Why don’t you name a price then? It sounds like you have access to their parts, manufacturing, freight and shipping, r&d, market research, divestment, payroll, tax, real estate and marketing costs - to mention only a few - plus their short, medium and long term profit targets and the resulting pricing strategy built upon analysis of all the above.

It’s not an assumption to say you are talking about this like it’s a diy project where they nailed a few old drivers into some mdf they had lying around and - TADA - 7.2 pref score + a price made up by putting on a blindfold and bashing a calculator.

Edit: will add that very smart people who are technical experts in a field with years of experience will go and do MBAs just to know how to go about pricing a product or service.
 
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FeddyLost

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Question is if you add 2 not so expensive subs like SVS for example how close are you to KH420 sound
You need to check your use case and approximate if their capability is enough in midbass, for example.
And to have consistent "speed of bass", I'd also try to find out sub with equal or better GD than fronts. Smaller SVS are not OK in this department.
And "image size" thrown at you usually have correlation with woofer size, not LF extension. So, 420 might "image bigger" than 310.

It's multiparametric quiz, and there is similar topic already
 

Mtbf

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I am not in the least bit interested in spending my money on active loudspeakers, especially internally tri-amplified.

In my past experience there will be a day in the future when the internal amplification fails, and when that day comes I have already learned the bitter truth that the correct replacement amplifier(s) will no longer be available from the OEM. This one will be even more complex to replace with what plate amps will be available for purchase at that time, and that will not fit/work properly, such that $11,000 becomes a total loss (including the cost of the speaker grills, but not the sales tax). I would rather buy passive speakers that will last several decades and are simple to replace the amplification for.

OTOH, if the OEM is offering a 20 year warranty, or even a solid guarantee in writing that replacement internal amplifiers will be stocked in inventory for at least 20 years, then I might become interested in purchasing active speakers. Funny though that none offer such a warranty/guarantee. I guess active loudspeakers are just another example of premature obsolescence.

FWIW, JBL and EV already left me stranded in this way...

I completely agree with you. I’ve always tried to avoid « all in one » products, be it hifi or coffee machines, just for that reason. Simply because if one part fails, everything fails. And this seems to be even more important nowadays, because things, especially electronic components, seem to last a lot shorter than they used to do. In our current « throw-away-society ». What a drag. The same way I stay rigorously away from subs that are controlled (solely) by an app, because you can be pretty sure that app support will fail in the near future, way before the sub is end of life.

But what probably could be said for the benefit of this and some other Neumann products is that, since they are all analogue, they are servicable right up to the end. Which means a very extensive life-cycle.
 

hmt

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I dont know if that has been mentioned but here in Germany the KH420 are 4000€ vs the 8361 are 4800€. The higher price of the 8361 is imo justified due to some advantages but that the price differences are non existent in the US might have some other reasons.
 

DjBonoBobo

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I completely agree with you. I’ve always tried to avoid « all in one » products, be it hifi or coffee machines, just for that reason. Simply because if one part fails, everything fails. And this seems to be even more important nowadays, because things, especially electronic components, seem to last a lot shorter than they used to do. In our current « throw-away-society ». What a drag. The same way I stay rigorously away from subs that are controlled (solely) by an app, because you can be pretty sure that app support will fail in the near future, way before the sub is end of life.

But what probably could be said for the benefit of this and some other Neumann products is that, since they are all analogue, they are servicable right up to the end. Which means a very extensive life-cycle.
I don´t know how much this is relevant for people who are worried about the electronics, but Neumann offers a Remote Electronics Kit (for flush mounting speakers). So you could pretty easily take the box apart. I guess this makes repairs at least more likely, but i don´t know.

Some pictures from the manual:

1651657600126.png


1651657495640.png

1651657523494.png


And from an installation:
1651657692817.png
 

xaviescacs

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thewas

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You are right that a stiffer cabinet pushes the resonanses uppwards in frequency but you are wrong about that this fact is more problematic. Its exactly the opposite - the loudspeaker cabinet will sound better , the higher in freq the resonanses are .
I have been listening togethet with a number of people ( other DIY:er ) and all agrees on this .
Releasing delayed cabinet resonanses at lower frequensies are the absolute worse you kan imagine in a cabinet, soundwise.

Thewas- have you done any listening tests at all for yourself, or are you just saying that more damping , and resonances at a lower freq should sound better ?
The topic is long researched like since the 60s by the BBC, there are enough papers if you are interested.
As said stiffness is not enough, very important is the damping. Have a metal structure with no damping and it can ring like a bell as the material damping of metal is very low.
There are even recordings where you can see for example that a thinner 16mm MDF with damping gives a much lower coloration than a thicker 22 mm one without:
https://www.hifi-selbstbau.de/bauvorschl-mainmenu-36/2-wege-lautsprecher-mainmenu-75/416-duo-dxt
 
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Robbo99999

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Robbo99999

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Sorry, bit grumpy this morning, I am not a big fan of wild speculation from enthusiasts on the internet who are technically ignorant and you, I am afraid seem to be incapable of stopping yourself producing a huge amount of it.
Sorry to be blunt.
Aww, that's not very nice, go grab yourself a coffee or get some kip!
 

test1223

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The 420 looks a bit rough in comparison, but You might acknowledge how small the deviations in the simulated (!!) in-room response (PIR) are. Once e/q'ed to the same IR response, the on-axis direct sound would only differ by a single dB with some dips n' peaks here and there.

What is the on-axis sound made for?

It mostly generates the stereo-pan, but the 'timbre' is mostly derived perceptually from the IR response. So, does a dB in on-axis response really do something to the stereo-panorama?

How would the stereo-pan change when turning the head slightly, listening ever so slightly off-center pp.? Relevance of a single dB?
You have to take the beaming into account.
With your logic a Genelec 8010 with subwoofer would sound the same as a 8361 or KH420, which isn't true. The brain is able detect the direct sound and to process it with taking the reflections into account. Therefore speakers which beam differently will not sound the same.

Where both differ vastly is the authority of the bass measured by the distortion, and subsequent intermodulation of the lower midrange. Nobody measures it. Hence people tell, the Genelec was weak, muddy, probably due to "reflection of bass energy in the coax plate", or so. Nice guess. But better to support the Genelec with a bass that would go up to at least 150Hz--no "sub".
The speculation of IMD is pointless without measurements. I wouldn't give sighted listening impressions any credibility, if there are also impressions which say the exact opposite (like the test on this site which I give much more credit). The woofers of both speakers will produce some IMD if the excursion is higher due to low bass playback.

--
Sadly such bigger speakers aren't that popular therefore the bigger price difference. Speakers of such size or bigger are therefore never the best price performance speakers. You get about 75 decent small monitor speakers like the Swissonic A 305 for the price of a pair of KH420 or if you stay with Neumann you get about 14 of the KH120. So the price performance is not good with almost any bigger speaker.
 

DSJR

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This review any use to you, at least on the practical side of this model's evolution? -

 

CMB

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Sorry, bit grumpy this morning, I am not a big fan of wild speculation from enthusiasts on the internet who are technically ignorant and you, I am afraid seem to be incapable of stopping yourself producing a huge amount of it.
Sorry to be blunt.
Come on, I need to express this.

To my knowledge Pearljam never has presented himself as an highly skilled expert but rather as an enthousiaste.

I think anyone should respect him for its participation here, which I understand also more as a « student » or « moderator » or « interviewer » role, asking many questions, making assumptions in the name of all us technical ignorant enthousiastes, so that the real knowledgeable persons/experts can answer, explain, correct, teach and share their knowledge.

I also think that this is a real asset to the different threads and he never gets upset despite some bashing happening from time to time.

I would thank him for that.

I don’t think to have understood that this site would have been reserved to highly skilled ingenieurs only.

Thank you for understanding my irritation.
 

thewas

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I think anyone should respect him for its participation here, which I understand also more as a « student » or « moderator » or « interviewer » role, asking many questions, making assumptions in the name of all us technical ignorant enthousiastes, so that the real knowledgeable persons/experts can answer, explain, correct, teach and share their knowledge.

I also think that this is a real asset to the different threads and he never gets upset despite some bashing happening from time to time.

I would thank him for that.
I also agree that he stays always on the polite site which gives a big plus on me for his character and contribution here, on the other hand though sometimes he writes posts which surprise and sadden me as they give me the impression that either all the past input he got here just went from one ear to the other, or he enjoys ̶t̶r̶o̶l̶l̶i̶n̶g̶ provoking.
 
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DjBonoBobo

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I also agree that he stays always on the polite site which gives a big plus on me for his character and contribution here, on the other hand though sometimes he writes posts which surprise and sadden me as they give me the impression that either all the past input he got here just went from one ear to the other, or he enjoys ̶t̶̶r̶̶o̶̶l̶̶l̶̶l̶̶i̶̶n̶̶g̶ provoking.
To avoid the discussion becoming too personal: Perhaps it helps to accept that the questions themselves are okay to be asked and can be helpful for the discussion.
 

Frank Dernie

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I don’t think to have understood that this site would have been reserved to highly skilled ingenieurs only.

Thank you for understanding my irritation.
I don’t take issue with keen enthusiasts making comments about appearance and listening experience.

Making confident statements about design and manufacturing cost without knowledge of quantities, tooling and driver cost is what annoyed me. And still does.
 

thewas

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To avoid the discussion becoming too personal: Perhaps it helps to accept that the questions themselves are okay to be asked and can be helpful for the discussion.
Questions are always ok to be asked, it just gets sometimes frustrating when the same ones are repeated from the same members.
 

JustJones

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KH420 ARE cheaper at least in the US(~$5200 vs $6000). Also, the biggest cost in any complex product is labour. It is possible that, after the (large) capital cost of the molds, it's actually cheaper for Genelec to mass produce their cabinets with casting. Especially since they're made in Finland where the workers are paid relatively well.

Either way, though, the price of high end products like these are more about what the market is willing to pay relative to alternatives. The KH 420 is competitive with the 8361A. If Neumann CAN make them cheaper, then that's extra margin for them. Though I suspect they're not really that much cheaper to make. I wouldn't be too surprised if the analog crossover and EQ system is actually more expensive than a DSP version would be.
The 8361a is cheaper in US. $4995


Neumann KH 420 $5195

Cheaper than either, Focal Trio11 be $4199
 

Pearljam5000

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Sorry, bit grumpy this morning, I am not a big fan of wild speculation from enthusiasts on the internet who are technically ignorant and you, I am afraid seem to be incapable of stopping yourself producing a huge amount of it.
Sorry to be blunt.
90% of what people say are assumptions
 
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