Originally Posted by Crblanz
You're the only one to say that the polks are bad, why do you think so?
Because I'm an elitist snob who thinks they sound very poor and overpriced - dirt cheap as they may be.
something that doesn't make much sense to me. How can a pair of speakers, (the "monitors") each with 1 tweeter and 1 woofer, be better than something like the the polks or pioneers, which have more woofers and whatnot, and are larger at a much smaller price? Especially the monitors that cost $800, just seems like it costs a lot for what you get.
I won't comment on the pioneers, as i've only heard their ~5k EX series speakers which are just a notch below world class...
But basically there's a few things involved in loudspeaker design:
- Getting frequency response as flat as possible and power response tapering down as frequency response rises
- Making a cabinet which does not resonate (cabinet)
- Getting drivers with low distortion in their passband (drivers)
- Integrating drivers together seemlessly (crossover)
- Getting a final impedance and sensitivity which allows available amplficiation to obtain good sound quality
Now the Polk Monitor 70 speakers do have "more drivers (albeit 6.5 inch)" but they're the types of drivers which are manufactured cheaply - mediocre excursion and low linearity - so you basically "need" more to compensate. The cabinets are tall and bracing is probably sub-par to say the least. The crossovers are poor - coherency is a mess. Impedance is a question mark - they state 8 ohms but it never means a thing unless you've got a frequency response vs impedance and phase angle plot. Polks also tend to overemphasize a certain higher frequency region - whether it's on axis response or off axis flaring causing this I don't know, but that's the gist of it.
Now the JBLs (and many studio monitors in general) do a few things
- Strive for flat frequency response for monitoring purposes (no need to impress anyone with hype for sales... reproduction is what sells monitors)
- Strive for tapering power response as a function of harman research
- Making well braced and short cabinets
- Use high excursion, high linearity 8" driver
- Use excellent waveguides to reduce tweeter distortion and thus increase SPLs, not to mention create coherent match from tweeter to woofer.
- Only use two drivers, which keeps things simply
- are active, which eliminates amp purchasing from the equation.
Also, while these aren't towers, they are by no means "small" speakers.
as for a single tweeter - most loudspeaker designs only use a single tweeter. With a waveguide this is usually fine as it increases low end output. Multiple tweeters are never a good idea. Again, better drivers sound better as volume rises, whereas the inferior tweeters on the polks will likely just become unpleasant.
With a good speaker "loud" isn't "too loud".
So maybe the polks can play "louder" but it won't be the same sort of pleasant loudness.