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Hi guys. I'm new here. I have a question about my JBL ES80's. I got them last December for about 280.00 per pair. I have them bi-amped to a Marantz 6007 receiver 100 watts per channel and I'm running it in 5.1 surround. I had a Yamaha receiver first but they were way to bright with the Yamaha. They are in my finished basement in a large room about 800 square ft. They sound better with the Marantz but the sound still seams a little boxy, like its kind of trapped inside and not very open and spacious.  From all of the research I have done it seems the JBL l890 would be quite a step up. I thought of moving the ES80's to the rear  to replace some older venue series bookshelf speakers for the mean time and then possibly sell the ES 80's later and get the matching L series bookshelves for the rear later. I have read some professional reviews that the L890's have a more open sound  which I'm looking for and obviously more base with the bigger 8" woofers. I would settle for the smaller L880's but Amazon is selling the L 890's a lot cheaper than the L880's right now. At first I thought the es80's were too bright but I think they are broken in now and seam to sound a little warmer. I was actually thinking of getting the Boston acoustic a360's for a warmer sound but then I would have to buy a new Boston Acoustics center channel also to replace my JBL ES25C center channel. Has anybody heard the JBL L890's? Would they be a substantial upgrade from the ES80's and have a more open sound? There are no stores close by to Listen to JBL l890's or the Boston acoustics a360's. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Since this is AV Science, I'll ask a science question:

Have you measured the speakers to see what their response is in your room?

You sound like you'd benefit from seeing the frequency response, and if you're up to it, the response in the time domain.

A sound meter (that any audiophile should already have) and a couple cables and adapters and the free REW software would get you on your way.

 
  • What are the reflections doing in your room? Maybe you're absorbing much more bass than high frequency so you're hearing reflected sound. 
  • "Not open and spacious"... could that mean you don't have enough reflections from the speakers?
  • Or run the music (is it music you're talking about?) through DPL II, DTS Music, etc. to engage surround speakers for ambiance ?
  • Is your bass response peaky with some frequencies accentuated and others diminished? Just about every room does this, and it doesn't matter the speaker.
    • Moving speakers, subs, listening position, and adding bass trapping fixes this. Auto EQ in the better receivers performs the final touch up.
 
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