No one ever said speakers should be in a cabinet. Hence, JBL created speakers specifically for building in walls and ceilings.
importer Reference Sounds writes about the series of in-wall speakers: ‘JBL Synthesis symbolizes the non-plus-ultra in movie and music experience with speaker systems specifically designed for in-wall applications. Technically optimized for wall or ceiling integration to enjoy immersive sound without visible speakers. Now of course that product category is far from unique and almost every manufacturer claims to have the best in-wall speakers in the assortment but still JBL Synthesis is different. Not sexier to look at, flashier to market or easier to install but better engineered for that built-in application. Custom Install speakers with JBL’s professional roots and HDI technology as the common thread running through each concept. Of course, that technology comes at a price. However, with four new Architectural series, JBL now also introduces its qualities in a much lower price range, starting far below the Synthesis line’.
Out of the box
Every sound source reacts to its environment. The sound resulting is therefore the sum of the direct sound and its reflections. ‘JBL knows this better than anyone else. When the loudspeaker moves from its position in front of the wall to inside the wall you immediately eliminate part of the reflections. Or rather you prevent some of the irregularities in its acoustic coupling with the wall behind it. So out of the cabinet and into the wall doesn’t have to be a bad idea at all, as long as the speakers are conceived for that location. JBL’s Architectural series are specifically designed and acoustically tuned for infinite baffle applications, built into the wall or ceiling in other words. Where many flush-mount speakers seem to have a bit of a hit or miss application in the low end, a JBL Architectural model – assuming a solid flush-mount wall – always sounds rich, balanced and tight in the low end,’ we read in the message the importer sent us regarding the speakers. Reference Sound continues: ‘Because this category of speakers are usually built flush into the wall or ceiling, a tap in, as we can do with freestanding speakers is just a little more difficult. Therefore a balanced sound path right in front of, but certainly right next to the axis of the speaker is extremely important. A goal on which JBL has based almost its entire research facility in Northridge. 75 measurements around the axis of the speaker and advanced, proprietary simulation software form the basis for a speaker that sounds good no matter which angle you listen to it from
JBL Architectural Series
With four new series, the choice is vast. Below is the description in the words of Reference Sounds in the message sent to us:
JBL Studio 6 Series
The Studio 6 series has the most similarities to the superior JBL Synthesis line. Developed for Cinema and top class sound from inside your wall. With the Studio 6 you build extremely energetic sound systems with tremendous dynamics. Like the JBL Synthesis models, all Studio 6 speakers are equipped with a compression driver with HDI Waveguide. No ordinary tweeter like almost all other manufacturers apply but a special tweeter with super high efficiency combined with specifically shaped High Definition horn. With this typical JBL approach, the Studio 6 speakers achieve a very wide and balanced radiation behavior and enormously powerful sound. It makes the Studio 6 a series of high-efficiency loudspeakers. Therefore, even with a somewhat less powerful amplifier, the Studio 6 makes tremendous music. Even the smallest Studio 6IW with 6.5″ woofer and a suggested retail price of € 489, – already has an efficiency of 91dB. The largest Studio 6 Theater with a suggested retail price of € 1,199 even reaches 96dB. Thanks to the sophisticated filter, the models are also an easy burden for the amplifier. An aspiration found in every JBL Architectural loudspeaker. With the Studio 6 series, film reproduction is therefore given unprecedented expression with crystal-clear precision. With special switches on the front, tuning of high and low tones is super easy.
JBL Stage Series
Like the Studio 6 Series, the Stage Series is also different from the average in-wall speaker. Although the Stage models are equipped with a standard dome tweeter instead of the more complex compression drivers, JBL engineers have paired it with an HDI Waveguide. This specially shaped horn in front of the tweeter again provides improved radiation behavior a higher efficiency and less distortion. Easy to drive so that even with modest amplifier power they realize more than enough output. The Studio 6 series has three wall models. Stage 260W with 6.5″ woofer, Stage 280W with 8″ woofer and a version with the tweeter sandwiched between two 5.25″ woofers, the Stage 255WL. The minimalist magnetic grills also let them blend tightly into the wall. For ceiling applications, JBL applies the same tweeter but with acoustic lens instead of HDI Waveguide. In addition to the 6.5″ version, an 8″ version and a 6.5″ model with dual tweeters, the Stage series also has two super interesting models where tweeter and woofer are placed at an angle of about 20degrees. Perfect for getting the sound image aimed at the desired listening position. Think for example of Atmos speakers in a surround configuration but also for example for a living kitchen where the sound is projected towards the dining table. Given the quality offered, the prices are particularly attractive as far as we are concerned. With a recommended price of € 179,- for the smallest Stage 260W, this series is actually simply unbeatable in terms of energy and enjoyment!
JBL Studio 2 Series
The Studio 2 Series includes proven technology as we know it from Revel flush-mount speakers but in a JBL jacket. With a Waveguide around the tweeter instead of an HDI horn, the treble response is slightly less energetic but still optimized for smooth frequency response. Even far beyond the axis of the speaker. High-quality filter components and drivers also ensure a particularly refined sound reproduction. A switch on the front allows fine tuning of the treble. With seven models, three of which are specifically for the ceiling, the Studio 2 offers a wide range of solutions. Of these, the mighty Studio 2 88IW with dual 8″ woofer is the most impressive. Perfect for applications where maximum sound quality, full bass response and impressive detail are high on the priority list.
JBL B Series
JBL’s new B Series make up the Basic line of the JBL Architectural series. Perfect for multiroom, multi-zone situations and corporate venues where the sound needs to be good but the Studio and Stage series become too budgetary. Very interesting for projects with multiple speakers distributed throughout the building for even reproduction of background music. Thanks to the use of less expensive materials, the B series starts at a low price point while the acoustic tuning is still above average. The line has five models, two of which are for in-wall installation and three for the ceiling. In addition to the 6.5″ and 8″ standard round ceiling models, there is also a 6.5″ ceiling model with dual tweeters for “stereo” application from a single speaker. The 6.5″ models of the B series have a recommended retail price of € 139, – (version with dual tweeter € 179, – ) the 8″ versions have a recommended retail price of € 169, –