JBL’s Project Everest DD67000s ($75,000/pair) are speakers that can keep up with the finest systems in the world. I know this to be true from first-hand experience listening to a pair owned by Harry Weisfeld (founder of VPI Industries). As a result, what I heard at AXPONA 2016 was a bit of a disappointment. While experienced the dynamics expected from such pricey and well-engineered horn-loaded speakers, soundstage and imaging was sketchy at best. The unfocused presentation was inconsistent with what I know—from experience—such a system can do.

The demo room happened to be empty when I entered it along with Wayne Myers and Dennis Young from Home Theater Shack . We had free reign to choose any seat, and we took full advantage of that freedom. Unfortunately, front row center (usually the prime seat) was no good. There was literally a huge hole in the center of the soundstage.

Moving back one row helped a little, at least vocals were rendered in the center of the soundstage but not to proper scale. The third row offered an additional (but slight) improvement in soundstage over the second row, but the system simply would not coalesce the way I’ve heard in the past. Granted these are not nearfield monitors, but I’ve certainly heard them image better in the past.
No code has to be inserted here.
Dennis concurred, saying that "David Runyon’s "Four Wild Horses" featured the lead singer to the left. His voice was easy to locate but it sounded four feet wide." when he moved back a row, he noted that it "improved the soundstage and imaging considerably, but never really brought the type of focus that I like to hear." Dennis concluded his comments expressing a sentiment similar to my own, stating "I have heard the Everest a few times before, enough to know that the room was dominating and better sound can be wrung out of the system. I suspect it's a victim of show conditions."

A rather fancy Mark Levinson system including a No.52 reference stereo preamp ($30,000) and twin No.536 mono block amplifiers ($15,000/each) provided processing and power for the system, which certainly did not lack clarity or impact. If only the imaging of the DD67000s had been more coherent, the demo could have been great.

The Mark Levinson system that ran the Project Everest DD67000s.
  Click here to check out more reports from AXPONA 2016.