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Neumann KH420 vs Genelec 8361A

Pearljam5000

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#1
Hi I'm considering spending $10K on monitors, it's pretty insane but i think I'm mentally ready lol
Kii Three and D&D 8C are unavailable in my country so I'm left with :

KH420
Pros:
More traditional design.
Goes down to 25 Hz
More SPL

Cons :
No DSP and my room is untreated.
I listened to the 8000 series and had the KH120 so I'm pretty familiar with the "house sound" of each company.
If you had $10K to spend on monitors which one would you buy?


8361A

Pros :
Coaxial
DSP
More powerful amps
Screenshot_20201118-030926.jpg
Screenshot_20201118-030847.jpg
Neumann_KH420_01-9KPLXEwbpJkaRu44fC85_gdjjyfzn9Q8.jpg
1575292036_1507381.jpg


I listened to the 8000 series and had the KH120 so I'm pretty familiar with the "house sound" of each company.
If you had $10K to spend on monitors which one would you buy?
 
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#2
Genelec. Get a subwoofer or two also, preferably from Genelec.

honestly, I’m not saying this on the specs, since those are basically identical in the ways the matter, and I trust both manufacturers. The Genelec build quality is distinctive here, and they have a product lineup which works well as an ecosystem.
 

Sancus

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#3
Pros:
More traditional design.
Goes down to 25 Hz
More SPL
Well, I would go with the 8361, but, to address these specific points:

1) I don't think the KH420 gets louder in practice. KH420 vs 8361A S&R distortion graphs.
Neumann KH420 ----------------------------------------------------- Genelec 8361A
1605663912744.png

Without a sub you are limited by your SPL output at 100hz and below in most music, and the 8361A has more output and lower distortion throughout this range(3% limit is much higher). Yes, the 8361A has a bit of a dip at 100-200hz capability, but it's academic IMO. For all practical purposes, the 8361A is equal or higher SPL output.

Goes down to 25 Hz
True, however I should point out your -6dB in-room will be different from the anechoic. For example, I have 8351B and my -6db point is 25hz in-room, not 32hz as spec. And it is a quite large, open space.

Finally, room correction is critical IMO and the bass from uncorrected speakers will never match corrected ones. So you should be planning to get some kind of room correction with the 420. GLM works very well and is super quick and easy to use, especially compared to REW or Audyssey. It is a major plus of Genelec.

Good luck; I'm sure you will be happy with either since they are both fantastic speakers.
 

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#9
ALSO Genelecs are prettier, end of story.

I would like to see your rear / surround speakers. Are they the same model?
 

Sancus

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#10
I would like to see your rear / surround speakers. Are they the same model?
They're currently Neumann KH80s. I just ordered a pair of 8341As for surrounds, and then the Neumanns will be moved to height(front and surround) duty for now. I may eventually get Genelec 8330A or 8331As($$$) for heights, but upgrading to 2-3 subwoofers and a better surround processor(HTP-1 or SDP-55, maybe, we'll see) are going to come first I think.

If you're wondering why I didn't go all-Genelec from the start, well, I've been putting this together slowly since last year, and the black KH80s were on sale for ~20% off here :) After the 8341A review, I decided to focus on Genelec going forward.

 

richard12511

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#11
ALSO Genelecs are prettier, end of story.

Love the white(that's what I got too). Have you tried them all horizontally? Horizontal config gives you horizontal directivity control all the way down to ~250Hz
 

richard12511

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#12
Or do what I did and go for 8351b + subs. Is this for professional use, or fun?
 

Sancus

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Love the white(that's what I got too). Have you tried them all horizontally? Horizontal config gives you horizontal directivity control all the way down to ~250Hz
I haven't, but it'd be an interesting experiment to see which measures better. I think I need one of the adapter brackets from K&M to mount them that way though. Might do it sometime. I also wanna do comparisons of GLM vs Audyssey vs Dirac. Right now I use GLM, and then only let Audyssey touch 200hz and below for the front speakers(with the app). It seems to work OK. All this takes time though and I'm spending most of my time just enjoying music on them for now ;)
 

richard12511

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#15
That's also a good option
For fun only. :)
Yeah I would definitely also consider the 8351b.

8351b advantages(no subs):
1. Slightly better on and off axis response
2. Slightly more consistent beam width
3. Cheaper

8361a advantages(no subs):
1. 5dB more output(
2. Slightly lower directivity control
3. Better extension

Adding subs definitely changes the game. If this were for professional use, I would Genelec subs(these 7370s are a swiss army knife of connections and options on the side). Since this is for enjoyment, and you don't need all those options, then I would actually recommend not getting Genelec subs. The 7370s are impressive for their size, but there are much better sounding subs out there for $4,000(I paid far less than this, though).
 

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richard12511

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I haven't, but it'd be an interesting experiment to see which measures better. I think I need one of the adapter brackets from K&M to mount them that way though. Might do it sometime. I also wanna do comparisons of GLM vs Audyssey vs Dirac. Right now I use GLM, and then only let Audyssey touch 200hz and below for the front speakers(with the app). It seems to work OK. All this takes time though and I'm spending most of my time just enjoying music on them for now ;)
Yeah I'm gonna be exploring a bunch of that stuff this weekend.
 

FrantzM

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#17
Hi

I haven't heard any of those speakers... I believe in multiple subwoofers and DSP/EQ ... I would be tempted by the Neuman, I am a bit of old school and IMO, there is no substitute for displacement. I have come to believe that the 100 to 200 Hz is critical in providing what, in the absence of a better term, I call realism and authority. We tend to focus on the low bass, the mid-bass reproduction is as important for accurate and realistic reproduction , IME and I would think the Neuman to be better in that area. Its directivity is very good, the Genlec is perhaps better but ...
 

Vintage57

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#18
I’ve already voted, and I have never heard or had better.
 

richard12511

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#19
I’ve already voted, and I have never heard or had better.
Part of it for me is definitely the aesthetics, although I do like the look of midrange domes(always have). I just like the futuristic high end look of the Genelec more.

Sonically, I'd bet these speakers are pretty similar.
 

Ilkless

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#20
8361. More future-proof. 420 is a bit long in the tooth. That said, it's still a wonderful "conventional" speaker, pretty much as good as possible in that format. Crazy smooth, crazy amounts of detail and dynamics.
 

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