Behringer B215XL and B212XL Speakers for Home Theater - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 28 Old 05-06-2020, 07:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Behringer B215XL and B212XL Speakers for Home Theater

Six years ago I wrote a post about the Behringer B215XL speaker and how I found its 2-way design featuring a compression horn tweeter made it quite suitable for home theater use and its overall pleasant sound even allowed it to excel at music. The one caveat is that they require a subwoofer because that’s how they are designed: Deep bass response is sacrificed for efficiency.

Read about how and why this affordable PA speaker from Behringer makes a great choice for home theater applications by clicking here.



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post #2 of 28 Old 05-06-2020, 08:38 AM
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Curious how the DIY guys would compare these to the HT and HTMs or the old Fusions. Could be a nice alternative.

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post #3 of 28 Old 05-06-2020, 08:48 AM
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I believe the DIYSG designs use higher quality drivers and certainly have more sophisticated crossovers specifically designed for home use as opposed to pro use like the Behringers are.
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post #4 of 28 Old 05-06-2020, 08:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klimo View Post
Curious how the DIY guys would compare these to the HT and HTMs or the old Fusions. Could be a nice alternative.
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Originally Posted by Dave in Green View Post
I believe the DIYSG designs use higher quality drivers and certainly have more sophisticated crossovers specifically designed for home use as opposed to pro use like the Behringers are.
It's all buried in old threads with too many comments to sort through, but I did bring the B215XLs with me to an AVS GTG and we auditioned them vs. some heavy-hitting "pro" home theater speakers but also against a DIYsoundgroup SEOS design.

Long story short is the Behringers were surprisingly close to the SEOS DIY design, overall. During that GTG they did not have the advantage of a subwoofer to fill out the bass.

Basically yes, a DIY build will likely spec out a better compression driver and put in a better crossover. Also likely a more capable woofer and a lower port tune.

In particular a DIY design would aim to lower the crossover point to something closer to 1000 Hz, for better overall dispersion characteristics. I did this by converting the Behringers to an active crossover and they had the headroom to do it, but I get why for a commodity PA speaker Behringer decided to make the 15" woofer do all the dirty work.

Anyhow, one of the great things about the Behringer is the cabinet, for numerous reasons (curved baffle, integrated horn, one-piece construction, all-black, compact for a 15" with horn, accommodates mounting) and overall the value for a "turnkey" solution is there.

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post #5 of 28 Old 05-06-2020, 11:11 AM
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My old S8v1 speakers can get pretty loud and make my ears ring. My son has Power Sound 210t front and a third one for center, and these can HURT you.I would be very careful with these pro sound speakers. A lot of them have warnings on them saying they can cause permanently damage your hearing.He got carried away when he first got them and he messed up his hearing for a couple of weeks. Thats why I like huge subwoofers,they can shake the stuffing out of you with no permanent damage.
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post #6 of 28 Old 05-07-2020, 05:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psyduck103 View Post
My old S8v1 speakers can get pretty loud and make my ears ring. My son has Power Sound 210t front and a third one for center, and these can HURT you.I would be very careful with these pro sound speakers. A lot of them have warnings on them saying they can cause permanently damage your hearing.He got carried away when he first got them and he messed up his hearing for a couple of weeks. Thats why I like huge subwoofers,they can shake the stuffing out of you with no permanent damage.
They are built for clubs and stages.. not for living rooms..

Just for comparison.. In studios they usually mix at 80db levels at ear level.. This is already quite load, much loader most people listen at home.. 80db at home and you have a reference volume level where loudness/base is perfectly matched for a flat sounding system..

But PA Speakers pump out almost 100db 1watt, at 1m distance.. If you sit 4m away, you still get 96db with 1 Watt.. which is already in the danger zone for your ears.. Crank it up, give them 100 watts.. 116db That is crazy..

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post #7 of 28 Old 05-07-2020, 08:59 AM
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They make volume controls!

I owned the Behringer speakers, I had 7 B215xls for my bed speakers and 4 B212xls for my atmos speakers. It was an awesome system. It was my first system with atmos and it was better overall than my big JBL 5 speaker Imax type system. The speaker itself was not better than the JBL one on one but I could not fit the JBLs for a full atmos system so I kept the Behringers. Now, I have built speakers with a 12 and horn loaded domes which I like better than the behringers, smoother, smaller, and better looking. However, they are more expensive just in drivers alone. My friend has my old system mated to a Cinema F20 horn sub I gave him and listen to it periodically. The behringer can scream at you on certain scenes but overall they do a great job. I have owned many different setups, too many to count. Ironically I prefer them with movies over music which they were designed for music.

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post #8 of 28 Old 05-07-2020, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by MKtheater View Post
... Ironically I prefer them with movies over music which they were designed for music.
Of course movies have dialog and a lot of music features vocals, so pro speakers are also designed to reproduce the human voice as well as musical instruments.
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post #9 of 28 Old 05-07-2020, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Bruce2019 View Post
(snip)

But PA Speakers pump out almost 100db 1watt, at 1m distance.. If you sit 4m away, you still get 96db with 1 Watt.. which is already in the danger zone for your ears.. Crank it up, give them 100 watts.. 116db That is crazy..
???

For 100dB/W at 1m, arithmetic gives about 88dB at 4m. Still loud. There may be a 2-3dB room gain added to that.
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post #10 of 28 Old 05-07-2020, 03:23 PM
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Of course movies have dialog and a lot of music features vocals, so pro speakers are also designed to reproduce the human voice as well as musical instruments.
Yes, but they are not meant for HT. They are meant for PA which is all music. They are ok for music but as you said they are much better at dyanmic explosions and speech.

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post #11 of 28 Old 05-07-2020, 03:57 PM
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But PA Speakers pump out almost 100db 1watt, at 1m distance.. If you sit 4m away, you still get 96db with 1 Watt.. which is already in the danger zone for your ears.. Crank it up, give them 100 watts.. 116db That is crazy..
I think your math is off. In general, with speakers, sound pressure level decreases by 6 db with a doubling of distance. So at 2 meters, in the example you provide the speaker drops by 6 db to 94 db, and if you double the distance again to 4 meters the speaker's output will be reduced by another 6 db and drop to 88 db. I should note, line sources behave differently as long as they are operating as a line source at a given distance. Line sources decrease by 3 db at each doubling of distance. So a line source would be 97 db at 2 meter and 94 db at 4 meters.

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post #12 of 28 Old 05-07-2020, 08:10 PM
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I think your math is off. In general, with speakers, sound pressure level decreases by 6 db with a doubling of distance. So at 2 meters, in the example you provide the speaker drops by 6 db to 94 db, and if you double the distance again to 4 meters the speaker's output will be reduced by another 6 db and drop to 88 db. I should note, line sources behave differently as long as they are operating as a line source at a given distance. Line sources decrease by 3 db at each doubling of distance. So a line source would be 97 db at 2 meter and 94 db at 4 meters.
Damn..

6db per doubling the distance, not 3db.. you are right..

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post #13 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 03:39 AM - Thread Starter
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Yes, but they are not meant for HT. They are meant for PA which is all music. They are ok for music but as you said they are much better at dyanmic explosions and speech.
Well, they are not marketed for HT. But they are a good choice for HT regardless. Better than many speakers sold at the same price as home theater speakers, I'd argue.

The B215XL speaker is a good design that provides vocal clarity. There's no logical reason to distinguish a PA speaker and other styles of "pro" speakers. At the end of the day it's a horn tweeter and 15" woofer in a ported cabinet, which is a classic combination that works for all kinds of sounds, not one subset of sound.

The distinction of PA speaker mostly has to do with how this speaker is marketed and the channels through which its sold. With the B215XL, music is clear, vocals and speech are also clear etc. The Behringers even image OK when used in a stereo application.

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post #14 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 05:25 AM
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Relevant in the sentiment of "trying unconventional things" - I have found active studio monitors to be very effective in my living room as well.

I started experimenting with a pair of Presonus Eris E8s I was given. Surprised I was. I got the itch and ran a pair of KRK 10-3 G4s for a while. They were very impressive - incredibly detailed, clean and played loud without any effort. Ultimately their aesthetic and the amplifier hiss at low listening levels were deal breakers.

I am now running the Kali IN-8. They are a balanced compromise of the attributes I was after (decent looks, little to no audible amplifier hiss at listening position, etc). The off axis response is fantastic as a result of the driver sizes and crossover points. They play plenty loud but do not feel like they have the same headroom the KRKs did.

All of these were sitting on top of a pair of Power Sound Audio XV-15 subwoofers.

I still want to try a 3 way active "PA speaker", like the Mackie DRM-315. I have a 2 year old toddler, the lack of grills on the mid-field studio monitors has been a bit of a challenge. A PA speaker with robust metal grills would be a lot more child tolerant.
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post #15 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 05:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Relevant in the sentiment of "trying unconventional things" - I have found active studio monitors to be very effective in my living room as well.

I started experimenting with a pair of Presonus Eris E8s I was given. Surprised I was. I got the itch and ran a pair of KRK 10-3 G4s for a while. They were very impressive - incredibly detailed, clean and played loud without any effort. Ultimately their aesthetic and the amplifier hiss at low listening levels were deal breakers.
Those KRK made an appearance at one of the AVS GTGs I went to. I don't specifically recall if it was the one where I brought my Behringers. What I do recall is exactly what you describe, turn them up and they just hammer away. They kept up with some heavy hitting competition at any listening level that I would consider reasonable and then went well beyond that. I was surprised.

Too bad about amplifier hiss.

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post #16 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 06:09 AM
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Those KRK made an appearance at one of the AVS GTGs I went to. I don't specifically recall if it was the one where I brought my Behringers. What I do recall is exactly what you describe, turn them up and they just hammer away. They kept up with some heavy hitting competition at any listening level that I would consider reasonable and then went well beyond that. I was surprised.

Too bad about amplifier hiss.
They never left me wanting more volume, for sure. My subs couldn't hold up their end of the bargain.

The Kali's still get plenty loud when I want them to, it just doesn't "feel" as effortless.
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post #17 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 06:14 AM
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Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Well, they are not marketed for HT. But they are a good choice for HT regardless. Better than many speakers sold at the same price as home theater speakers, I'd argue.

The B215XL speaker is a good design that provides vocal clarity. There's no logical reason to distinguish a PA speaker and other styles of "pro" speakers. At the end of the day it's a horn tweeter and 15" woofer in a ported cabinet, which is a classic combination that works for all kinds of sounds, not one subset of sound.

The distinction of PA speaker mostly has to do with how this speaker is marketed and the channels through which its sold. With the B215XL, music is clear, vocals and speech are also clear etc. The Behringers even image OK when used in a stereo application.
I agree with you 100%. I meant marketing when I said not meant for. They are not sold in a HT shop. Where I bought mine it is a musical instrument store sharing space with a HT store and the Behringers were better than their HT speakers but they would never even know. Besides, they would not sell those more expensive HT speakers they have. I have used The Behringer truth speakers as well which actually sound nicer than the 215xl but they tap out before reference in my room. Their clip indicator would lite up. I also tried their QSC K10 speakers.
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post #18 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 06:56 AM
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Originally Posted by MKtheater View Post
They make volume controls!

I owned the Behringer speakers, I had 7 B215xls for my bed speakers and 4 B212xls for my atmos speakers. It was an awesome system. It was my first system with atmos and it was better overall than my big JBL 5 speaker Imax type system. The speaker itself was not better than the JBL one on one but I could not fit the JBLs for a full atmos system so I kept the Behringers. Now, I have built speakers with a 12 and horn loaded domes which I like better than the behringers, smoother, smaller, and better looking. However, they are more expensive just in drivers alone. My friend has my old system mated to a Cinema F20 horn sub I gave him and listen to it periodically. The behringer can scream at you on certain scenes but overall they do a great job. I have owned many different setups, too many to count. Ironically I prefer them with movies over music which they were designed for music.
Damn you !!

I have 5 x Wharfedale Pro Titan 8 PA Speakers as my ear level speakers and now I need to go and upgrade my Atmos to match.
I was trying to find a ceiling or bookshelf speaker that might be a good match to the Titans (Cloth compression driver tweeter) as I used to have a complete match 7.x.4 setup and know just how good it is when all your speakers are identical. But after reading your post I realise I have to bite the bullet and buy 6 more Titans
Of course I already knew that deep down - I actually started with 2 B215XLs as L&R with the Titans for the other 5. Individually the Titans and Behringers sounded almost identical, but when I swapped the Behringers for the Titans (and just ran 5.x.4) the difference was very noticeable as the soundfield was a lot more seamless.

Back closer to the topic - I listen to mainly heavy electronic music but I stumbled across Audiophile Test CDs on youtube and played some of them.
OMG I did not know music could sound so good - crystal clear cymbals and vocals and string plucks etc etc. I was absolutely gobsmacked.
Of course big action movies are also amazing and the vocals are also crystal clear, even at reference levels during the action scenes.

So PA speakers get a huge thumbs up for me for music and movies.
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Cool

I'm thinking about upgrading the basement with PA speakers too. I might go with 8 Monoprice Stage Right 15's. They are close in price with the Rockville 15's when you buy 4-9 speakers.
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Talking

Center channel and rest of basement.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MKtheater View Post
They make volume controls!

I owned the Behringer speakers, I had 7 B215xls for my bed speakers and 4 B212xls for my atmos speakers. It was an awesome system. It was my first system with atmos and it was better overall than my big JBL 5 speaker Imax type system. The speaker itself was not better than the JBL one on one but I could not fit the JBLs for a full atmos system so I kept the Behringers. Now, I have built speakers with a 12 and horn loaded domes which I like better than the behringers, smoother, smaller, and better looking. However, they are more expensive just in drivers alone. My friend has my old system mated to a Cinema F20 horn sub I gave him and listen to it periodically. The behringer can scream at you on certain scenes but overall they do a great job. I have owned many different setups, too many to count. Ironically I prefer them with movies over music which they were designed for music.
Just curious, how did you hang those B212xls for Atmos?
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I bought their wall brackets and bolted them to the ceiling joist. I have a picture somewhere.

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Here they are



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post #24 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 11:13 AM
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In theory, if you stuffed the cabinet, it would lower the port tuning to make these better without a sub. In practice, is there enough space to do that inside without blocking the ports or hitting the cone?
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post #25 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Well, they are not marketed for HT. But they are a good choice for HT regardless. Better than many speakers sold at the same price as home theater speakers, I'd argue.

The B215XL speaker is a good design that provides vocal clarity. There's no logical reason to distinguish a PA speaker and other styles of "pro" speakers. At the end of the day it's a horn tweeter and 15" woofer in a ported cabinet, which is a classic combination that works for all kinds of sounds, not one subset of sound.

The distinction of PA speaker mostly has to do with how this speaker is marketed and the channels through which its sold. With the B215XL, music is clear, vocals and speech are also clear etc. The Behringers even image OK when used in a stereo application.
It was your review of the Monoprice Stage Right 15 that led me to buy a pair when they had open box deals for $99 each. It's been a fantastic upgrade. Not only do they sound great, but they freed up my JBL 4311s to be used as surround speakers. Wow, what a difference having beefier surrounds is! Anyway, thanks for the review and for thinking outside the box. These PA speakers are amazing value for the money.
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post #26 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 12:06 PM - Thread Starter
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It was your review of the Monoprice Stage Right 15 that led me to buy a pair when they had open box deals for $99 each. It's been a fantastic upgrade. Not only do they sound great, but they freed up my JBL 4311s to be used as surround speakers. Wow, what a difference having beefier surrounds is! Anyway, thanks for the review and for thinking outside the box. These PA speakers are amazing value for the money.
I noticed that the Stage Right lineup has expanded. I'm going to ask monoprice to send me some, maybe the 12".

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post #27 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by imagic View Post
I noticed that the Stage Right lineup has expanded. I'm going to ask monoprice to send me some, maybe the 12".
The newer ones look a little nicer for home use with black grills covering the fronts. The 12" unpowered version is currently selling for $99.99 with free shipping, so quite a bargain compared to the going price on the Behringers. The crossover for the current 12" is 2.2kHz vs. 2.0kHz for the 15".
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post #28 of 28 Old 05-08-2020, 12:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dave in Green View Post
The newer ones look a little nicer for home use with black grills covering the fronts. The 12" unpowered version is currently selling for $99.99 with free shipping, so quite a bargain compared to the going price on the Behringers. The crossover for the current 12" is 2.2kHz vs. 2.0kHz for the 15".
I just put in a request for the 12", hopefully I can check them out soon.
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