Originally Posted by Mark Lem
I'm close to closing in on LCR of 228HT's for my home theater (single 8's/slant 8's sides&rear in a 7.1). I get that they are great at reference but what about say normal levels of listening. I know this is subjective, lets call it typical waf listening levels. things like voice articulation, music score in films. My wife will never watch a movie close to reference. currently have B&W 804's plus HTMC4 center for the three up front and they do a pretty good job at lower listening, though the other night while watching Avengers BD, they were a bit harsh and weak on the really loud scenes (like near end battle with lots of glass shattering)... So are the JTR's for those loud rocking sounds or can they be subtle and detailed at lower listening as well. I don't have the opportunity to listen before buying
Just keeping it real here -
At typical WAF listening levels -- JTR won't beat all typical low efficiency audiophile speakers hands down to every single listener's ears across the board. They are good (excellent in my opinion) - but everyone's opinion is subjective. My clearest opinion of JTR speakers is that they retain their good sound as they are turned up to levels that are beyond reasonable, so if you like their sound at low levels, you'll like them as they turn up! They do not degrade at all as you dial in louder -- if anything - they sound better as you turn them up.
To my first point - - - If it is only low level music you are listening to we know from past g2g's that JTR is not a single answer solution for everyone. At the recent Des Moines G2G where equivalently priced Salk and JTR front sound stages were A/B'ed blind by 11 avsforum enthusiasts, the JTR got 6 votes and the Salk got 5 votes for the music section for stereo listening. Thus it wasn't any kind of clean sweep for music listening at moderate levels, and the votes were cast close enough to 50/50 that it may be statistically insignificant. Thus the reason for my post. (I personally loved
the JTR, but there were those there that I talked to who were equally passionate about the Salk sound). However for movies - where dynamics come into play - the blind votes by the same group of people (only slighty smaller because two guys had to leave early) were 7 for JTR and 2 for Salk out of 9 total blind voters. So while the JTR sound great for music - they preform even better where dynamics and louder quality sound are the expectation. 7 of 9 votes in a blind test is statisically clear! Yet, I've learned from all the G2G's I've been to that people subjectively prefer many different things. There isn't a single answer 100% solution for everyone's needs. Even with 7 of 9 blind votes going to the JTR on movies - 2 people still prefered the Salks. At lower level listening, and close proximity that ribbon tweeter is really something as carp will attest. But, the ribbon tweeter design just isn't made to keep up at louder volume.
The above said -- the traits you mentioned on your B&W's about harshness increasing as the volume is increased is not a property of JTR. That's where a high dynamic speaker like the JTR, seperates itself from the cowd. --- and that seperation is not just due to lack of amp power. The Salks at the Des Moines g2g were on a 1000 watt monoblock each. The JTR were powered off the Denon 4311 AVR, because we couldn't get the JTR dialed back enough on the 1000 watt monoblocks (the mono blocks had no gain structure) to even level match correctly in David's room, and the super high sensitivity of the JTR Noesis 212HT was picking up a bit of amp hiss off the monoblocks to further complicate things.Edited by Archaea - 3/7/13 at 7:25am