JBL Gurus: I need advice!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by DerekF, Nov 19, 2002.

  1. DerekF

    DerekF Stunt Coordinator

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    A friend of mine wants to spend $5000CAD ($3200 USD) on an entire HT setup. All he has so far is a DVD player, so that means stretching the $5000CAD to cover 5 speakers, 1 sub, a receiver, an RPTV and cables.

    I need your feedback on the audio portion!

    JBL comes up quite a bit for lower-cost installations, but since I am unfamiliar with the brand, I would appreciate your feedback on the following 90% HT setup:

    JBL S-CENTERII $128.00
    JBL S26II $169.99/pr (x2, mains & surrounds) $339.98
    Denon AVR-1803 $379.99
    Sony SA-WM40 Active Subwoofer $139.99
    Total $987.96 ($1565 CAD, $1900CAD after taxes & shipping)

    That leaves around $3000CAD for an RPTV...which may be cutting it close....

    Should I go with the N series? Will the S26 work well as a main?

    I appreciate your feedback!

    Derek
     
  2. Phil Iturralde

    Phil Iturralde Screenwriter

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  3. DerekF

    DerekF Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the excellent info Phil!

    I just noticed the sensitivity is only 87 dB for the S26s...would that be too low for pairing with the modest output of the AVR1803? A rule of thumb is that you need twice the amplifier wattage to achieve the same level of sound for every three dB of speaker sensitivity--meaining a speaker rated at a higher sensitity might be easier to push...thoughts?
     
  4. Pablo Abularach

    Pablo Abularach Supporting Actor

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    Derek,

    The Studio series from JBL is a great option, I have four S26 and S center with and SVS 25-31PCi. A great setup.

    So,

     
  5. Angelo.M

    Angelo.M Producer

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    If you're going with the Studio series, consider the S38's for the main speakers.

    Don't overlook the Northridge series. With due respect to Phil, for a first-time home theater setup, the Northridge will more than fit the bill. The N28's and N38's are terrific for front speakers.

    --AM
     
  6. DerekF

    DerekF Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks Pablo,
    I'd love to get my friend into an SVS (it's on the wish list for my Psb system!), but it's a tug-of war for cash--especially since he's relying on me to pick out equipment and somehow include an RPTV in the $5000CAD HT purchase! [​IMG]
    Because of the firm budget, I can't see spending more than what I already have on the above (hence my questions on the N series...)...
    Basically, my (his) budget looks like:
    $2000 CAD set aside for a receiver, speakers & sub
    $2800 CAD for RPTV
    $200 CAD for cables (he has most of them already)
    Getting any of the SVS subs into Canada will easily eat up $1000 CAD [​IMG]
     
  7. Phil Iturralde

    Phil Iturralde Screenwriter

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  8. DerekF

    DerekF Stunt Coordinator

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    One other thing I noticed: Authorized JBL dealers cost a LOT more. Is there any reason I should spend more than twice as much on the S26IIs in order to get a warranty? Logic would dictate that if I have a problem that the unauthorized dealer will not fix, I could simply buy another pair...and still be ahead!

    s26II - Pair
    $399 @ harmanaudio.com
    $169 @ eTronics.com

    ...thoughts?
     
  9. Phil Iturralde

    Phil Iturralde Screenwriter

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  10. Pablo Abularach

    Pablo Abularach Supporting Actor

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    I bought all my JBL speakers and Pioneer Car stereos in Etronics.com without any problems at all. So even if they aren't a authorized dealer, they do have great prices and service.
     
  11. Angelo.M

    Angelo.M Producer

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    Terrific prices at www.consumer-direct.com. Although not listed at JBL's webpage, I believe they are authorized as they have a true brick and mortar store now (in Raleigh, NC) in addition to their web-based business.
    -AM
     
  12. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
    HW Reviewer

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    If color isn't a real issue, you should consider the S36AWs all around. They can be had for $170 a pair through yahoo shopping's lowest price. They are similar in design to the S38, but utilize a 6" woofer instead of an 8". They also have a plastic wall mountable enclosure, similar to that of the N24s and N26s, yet are closer to the size and orientation of the S38s.

    If you search for just the S36s, you won't come up with the $170 price point. You have to search for the S36AWs, which are the white indoor/outdoor version. The only differences are the color (white), the grille (metal instead of cloth), and the cones are coated with a weather resistant version of the normal poly-plas coating found on the non-AW JBL speakers.

    The S36AWs would provide performance more in line with the S38s with a price that's only $10 more a pair than the best yahoo shopping price for the S26s. I'm not sure about the room or the decor, but the S36AWs may blend better with the decor, and wall mounting may be a plus.

    Hope this helps.
     

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