The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
JBL M2 crossover Studio Monitors
Old 11th January 2019
  #1
Lives for gear
 
Eganmedia's Avatar
JBL M2 crossover

I bit the bullet and ordered a pair of JBL M2s today. I’ve been shopping for a pair of stereo monitors that can grow as part of a new surround system. I’ve been using 5 Dynaudio BM15as and a pair of Dynaudio BX30 subs for the past 20 years. God that makes me feel old...

Back on track.

I had auditioned Barefoot MM27s and a few others similar in size and intended placement, wishing I could afford a pair of M2s, when I fhad an epiphany: the 20k+ price tag of the M2 system includes a pair of Crown I-tech 5000HD amps with the specific JBL crossover and DSP algorithms for the M2s running inside them. The only other way to get the proper crossover is with a BSS London processor. Or a JBL Intonato monitor controller. I bought an Intonato last year without even considering new monitors at the time. I liked that it could manage my 5.2 Dynaudio system. Realizing I could bypass buying the $12,000 worth of amps and use amps without built-in DSP made me realize I could add the M2s in to the mix of candidates I planned to audition. Most of what I mix these days is sound for picture, and although I don’t have a dubbing stage for a mix room, I feel that when I can add a center center channel M2 and a pair of 708i/p, Ill be closer to what so many dub stages are hearing.

Okay. Actually back on track.

Are there any Intonato users here who have used the device to cross over and process their M2s? It took me forever just to confirm that the Intonato would indeed do the trick. Is there any reason to think I’ll be missing out in any way by not using the I-Tech 5000 HD for its onboard processing? I have plenty of good amplification (a pair of bridged mono Crown CTS2000s (2000 Watts) for each of the speakers’ woofers and another CTS 2000 running in stereo (1000wpch) for the horns). I don’t know if the CTS 2000 use similar design to the I-Techs’, but they are fine amps in their own right with a very high damping factor and adequately low distortion. Has anyone ever heard a pair of M2s with any other amps/ processors than the I-Techs’?
Old 11th January 2019
  #2
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eganmedia View Post
I bit the bullet and ordered a pair of JBL M2s today. [. . .] Has anyone ever heard a pair of M2s with any other amps/ processors than the I-Techs’?
Hi Eganmedia -

Way to go, dude!

I've been holding off on the M2s until the I-Tech's start supporting Dante. . .crossing my fingers that a NAMM announcement will shed more detail; but we'll see.

Several months back I did look at other options - and remember there were some. Not sure if I still have the info; but I'll check later today and re-post if I find it. But there is a stipulation: It was only research - not something I actually tried or saw first hand.

Also, I was 'pitched' lower line Crown amps by the dealer after consultation with JBL's rep. . .as they knew I was only interested in Dante options. However, Crown's DriveCore Dante enabled amps were not for me and I will continue to wait for the I-Tech update. While I found JBL/Crown support itself completely unresponsive [sad customer service for such great brands], my dealer [Sweetwater] was very aggressive in helping me run down JBL responses.

Congratulations on your M2s. . .very exciting!


Best regards,

Ray H.
Old 12th January 2019
  #3
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayHeath View Post
Not sure if I still have the info; but I'll check later today and re-post if I find it.
Sorry about the delayed response. . .admin work for my software dev firm [my primary source of income] ate my whole day.

It looks like I didn't save much of the M2 artifacts that didn't fit my planned path. However, spelunking through the files reveled a couple docs that you may find useful [if you haven't already hit them]:
  1. Instructions for JBL LSR708i LSR705i M2 Crown DCi Tuning Files.pdf
  2. JBL M2 LSR705i LSR708i Tunings V1.0 20151208.DCi Series.SpeakerTuning

Of course, equivalent artifacts for the I-Tech & BSS Soundweb London are available from the JBL site as well.

The missing info were notes and links to YouTube or Vimeo clips of the DCi/M2 setup; but I don't currently see them with a quick search.

You can query google or bing with something like 'JBL M2 Crown DCi' and find users who have gone that route. There were some discussions on forums like Audio Science Review, and others.

Sorry, I didn't keep the info or links around - but I expect you will find it with a bit of effort.


Again, congratulations on your M2s! I'll be hoping you post your experiences with them in coming weeks.


Best regards,

Ray H.
Old 2nd February 2019
  #4
Lives for gear
 
Eganmedia's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayHeath View Post
Sorry about the delayed response. . .admin work for my software dev firm [my primary source of income] ate my whole day.

It looks like I didn't save much of the M2 artifacts that didn't fit my planned path. However, spelunking through the files reveled a couple docs that you may find useful [if you haven't already hit them]:
  1. Instructions for JBL LSR708i LSR705i M2 Crown DCi Tuning Files.pdf
  2. JBL M2 LSR705i LSR708i Tunings V1.0 20151208.DCi Series.SpeakerTuning

Of course, equivalent artifacts for the I-Tech & BSS Soundweb London are available from the JBL site as well.

The missing info were notes and links to YouTube or Vimeo clips of the DCi/M2 setup; but I don't currently see them with a quick search.

You can query google or bing with something like 'JBL M2 Crown DCi' and find users who have gone that route. There were some discussions on forums like Audio Science Review, and others.

Sorry, I didn't keep the info or links around - but I expect you will find it with a bit of effort.


Again, congratulations on your M2s! I'll be hoping you post your experiences with them in coming weeks.


Best regards,

Ray H.
So I finally got and installed the M2s. Holy cow. I had no idea how much information was missing from my previous monitors. I'd been mixing on Dynaudio BM15as with a pair of Dynaudio BX30 subs for the last 20 years. I can't say that I don't still like them very much, but I'm realizing I had learned to "mix around" their weaknesses. In my (somewhat) new control room they had to work quite hard to fill the space. The room is 5500 cubic feet, and at a listening distance of ~7 feet they were pretty much at their at their limits when anything really dynamic was being worked on.

I ended up buying 3 Lab Gruppen E 12:2 amps (one each for the bottoms, one in stereo for the tops) on a lark. The price was right and the little first-hand information I could find on them suggested they would work nicely. They do. I can't compare the Intonato/ Lab Gruppen/ M2 chain to the traditional Crown iTech 5000HD/ M2 chain as I don't own the Crowns. But I can compare them to what I have been using for two decades. The difference is far greater than I expected. All the problems I dealt with in getting the low end to translate seem to be figured out. I haven't actually mixed anything of significance on the M2s yet, but the problems I heard when I took mixes to other systems show up on the M2s in the control room. That's very reassuring. My room measures well in the low end, and I'm convinced the problems were due to issues with the subs and the output limitations of the BM15as. The dynamic range of the M2s is something to behold. I can't imagine ever working on a project where I would need all the headroom they have. I feel like I'm driving a McLaren on a country road at 50MPH. There is plenty left when I want to go fast, but the handling at that speed is itself a thing of beauty.

I think JBL has hamstrung themselves by suggesting that the iTechs are the best solution for most people. I get that they want to sell amplifiers as well as speakers, but I was able to piece together the whole thing (Intonato and remote for ~$3200, M2s for $8500, and used Lab Gruppen amps for $900) for a grand total of less than $13k. That's about half the list price of the M2/ iTech package they push. If I hadn't realized on my own that the Intonato had the DSP presets for the M2s I wouldn't have even considered them. The other speakers I was considering were all fantastic speakers, but they were all much smaller and intended for much closer placement. All the resolution I heard from the Barefoot MM27s I auditioned I'm hearing from the M2s, but the M2s are 5' farther away. It's unreal.

The Intonato has its fans and its detractors. But if someone is owns one and is considering new mains for either music or post, they already have a huge part of the M2 equation.

Now I just need a third one and a few 708/705s and I can replace my entire post B chain. Until then I 'll hang on to the Dynaudios, but for stereo I have a new amazing tool.

Back to listening...

Joe
Old 2nd February 2019
  #5
Congrats on the M2s, they're amazing speakers!
Running them with an I-Tech 4x3500HD here.
Old 7th February 2019
  #6
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eganmedia View Post
So I finally got and installed the M2s. [. . .]
Joe -

Thanks for the update! I hope you will post back here with additional detail of your experience after you've used the M2s a few weeks.


Best,

Ray H.
Old 5th March 2019
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Eganmedia's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayHeath View Post
Joe -

Thanks for the update! I hope you will post back here with additional detail of your experience after you've used the M2s a few weeks.


Best,

Ray H.
So it's been a few weeks on the new M2s and I am surprised by them every time I listen to something I thought I knew well. Listening back to projects I mixed on the Dynaudios I hear every mix problem I heard on other systems in other rooms. I've broken out a few old Pro Tools sessions to see what I did in the low mids/ low end that made the mixes less than clear down there. It's funny. Most of the tracks with lots of LF energy have a whole bunch of plugins and I can remember being frustrated trying to hear what was really going on down there. Now I hear it clear as a bell. I've remixed some music and some stereo audio-for-video projects I was never happy with and I really wish I could go back in time and remix everything.

But the wide, even frequency response is only part of what I like about them. The best way I can describe their sound is "effortless". I get that that's one of those nebulous audiophile terms that sounds like it is trying to say a lot while really saying nothing. What I mean is that I don't hear the crossover at all, they have so much headroom that transients never feel compressed or clipped. There is no distortion and I get zero fatigue from listening to them for long periods of time. It's almost like listening to really good headphones that just happen to be 9' in front of me rather than pushing on my ears. The phantom center in stereo is so solid I find myself checking to be sure I'm not sending anything to the center channel of my old system. I can hardly wait until I find a deal on a third for an LCR system. I check Reverb and Ebay daily for another pair of Lab Gruppen E12:2s and another M2. It's good to have a dream. Especially a dream that sounds so good.
Old 6th March 2019
  #8
Lives for gear
 
MIKEHARRIS's Avatar
I’m a fan of big drivers moving air ‘effortlessly’ and combined with new horn designs and DSP these sing.
With the distortion so low you may find your monitoring levels a bit higher.
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
wixom79 / Live Sound
2
jx-10recorder / So Much Gear, So Little Time
3
firby / Geekslutz Forum
7
goodwolf / Geekslutz Forum
4
dsoukup / Geekslutz Forum
4

Forum Jump
Forum Jump