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Test of new speakers for HT Atmos stage
Old 14th September 2019
  #1
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Test of new speakers for HT Atmos stage

We're right now testing the LCR candidates for our new Dolby certified HT Atmos room:

Neumann KH420, Genelec S360, JBL 708p

will keep you updated how we decide..
Attached Thumbnails
Test of new speakers for HT Atmos stage-img_5286.jpg  
Old 15th September 2019
  #2
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I wish I could be there to hear this test!
Old 15th September 2019
  #3
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dr.sound's Avatar
 

Of the choices:
Nearly every small/small mid size room in LA has the JBL 708's.
Not an endorsement, just an observation.
The JBL's had lot's of QC issues since Samsung has taken over.
I personally not a Genelec fan. Sound great, translates, not so great.
A very good friend who I respect works for a company that has
lots of Genelec rooms. They are not impressed with they way they
sound or translate.

The Neuman review here sounds like they could be the speaker of the bunch:
https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/neumann-kh420

https://en-de.neumann.com/kh-420
Old 15th September 2019
  #4
Gear Nut
 

REALLY looking forward to the results of this test!
Old 15th September 2019
  #5
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Well, what I can say until now is that the choice is between the Neumanns and the Genelecs.

The JBLs are not in the same league. The others are better in every regard. Power, frequency response, transient handling, stereo image etc.

That doesn't mean they aren't good speakers though.
They are a lot smaller and less expensive than the others.

Full disclosure: I'm a sucker for speakers. I was a full time mastering guy years ago (still do it once in a while) and worked on the really expensive stuff like the big PMCs, big B&Ws etc., and have B&W 802 in my living room.

So I know what a really great speaker can sound like.

And FWIW, my experience with Genelecs is different. IMO they are very very fine speakers and translate well.

Last edited by kosmokrator; 15th September 2019 at 11:20 AM..
Old 15th September 2019
  #6
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My impressions so far:

The S360 is truly remarkable. That you can get 100dB SPL at 10m distance(!) out of a 2-way speaker that size and also have it sound great is really astonishing. They go loud. Like REALLY LOUD!!

For other rooms, their speaker management system GLM could be the deciding factor. It's really well thought through and works well.
We have that covered though since we're using Trinnovs in our rooms.
I really like how the Genelecs are not 'loose' at all, they are sounding really compact. (Always difficult to put these things into words.)
Great stereo image as well.

The Neumanns are also really awesome.
For me they are (almost) up on par with the really good mastering speakers I know. They are a bargain for that (compare the price let's say to a PMC MB2XBD)
You can really hear that this is a 3-way-system, IMO especially on voices this is becoming obvious - in a good way.
IMO, they are a bit more relaxed sounding than the Genelecs, which is a personal choice who likes what better. Might be easier on the ears for long periods.
They also go loud, not as loud as the Genelecs though. The limiters kick in earlier. Still enough for the Dolby certification for our room layout though.
Another plus is that they are a full-range system. They go down to about 26Hz without a big drop, the Genelecs to about 35Hz, so you want to bass-manage them. And while I like the Genelec subs, the lowest octave is not as 'fast' as on the Neumanns.

Apart from the sound, the Genelecs are more 'modern'. With built-in DSP, and you also can complement them with their really great coaxial siblings for the surrounds and tops. And control all of them via the GLM network. Great features!

The Neumanns are way more 'traditional'. But the 310 as surrounds and tops (or maybe 120s, let's see what Dolby says..) are not shabby either.
A pro is that we use the Neumann range in our other rooms, and also in all edit and QC bays in our company. And although they are the biggest cabinets by far, you can align the center horizontally, and that way you save space under the TV which then can be a bit bigger (we're having both TV and projection in that room).

That's my impressions so far. Let's see what the team says..

Last edited by kosmokrator; 15th September 2019 at 07:45 PM..
Old 17th September 2019
  #7
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matt82aust's Avatar
 

Looking forward to hearing more about the S360. I personally find the Genelecs translate to television well, is the criticism moreso directed at theatrical / large room translation?
Old 17th September 2019
  #8
Looking forward to hear more!
Old 17th September 2019
  #9
I'm guessing the KH310s on the wall are in the room already - what kind of work are you doing on those? How do they translate? I'm considering them for a small film premix room in the future. Really liked them for a stereo music mix I did (not post).

Rob Walker AMPS
Old 17th September 2019
  #10
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dr.sound View Post
Of the choices:
Nearly every small/small mid size room in LA has the JBL 708's.
Not an endorsement, just an observation.
The JBL's had lot's of QC issues since Samsung has taken over.
I personally not a Genelec fan. Sound great, translates, not so great.
A very good friend who I respect works for a company that has
lots of Genelec rooms. They are not impressed with they way they
sound or translate.

The Neuman review here sounds like they could be the speaker of the bunch:
https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/neumann-kh420

https://en-de.neumann.com/kh-420
Do you happen to know which model or models? Apparently the "One" are pretty impressive. Not in the same realm as the old 1031s.
Old 17th September 2019
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thermisonic View Post
I'm guessing the KH310s on the wall are in the room already - what kind of work are you doing on those? How do they translate? I'm considering them for a small film premix room in the future. Really liked them for a stereo music mix I did (not post).

Rob Walker AMPS
The particular room in the picture is our biggest picture edit suite. It has similar dimensions than the mix room that is being built. It has 310s in a 5.1 layout,

We have the 310s as stereo sets in our smaller audio rooms as well (KH120 for 5.1), they are fine speakers.
We are doing mostly tv and web, with about 5-10 projects a year that get played in theaters.

Last edited by kosmokrator; 17th September 2019 at 07:53 PM..
Old 17th September 2019
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Concept Chelia View Post
Looking forward to hear more!
Well, actually all of the team interestingly came to the same conclusions as my first impression. Even though I had them test individually and share their findings just with me first.

So the 420s are the choice. I’m happy.
Old 18th September 2019
  #13
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minister's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by kosmokrator View Post
IMO, they are a bit more relaxed sounding than the Genelecs, which is a personal choice who likes what better. Might be easier on the ears for long periods.
One of the many reasons I ditched my 1032's....My ears were really tired at the end of the day, like someone scrubbed them with steel wool gently. The K+H's I have now are not fatiguing at all. And, I agree, Genny's do not translate as well, it's always like, "what happened to the high end?".
Old 18th September 2019
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by minister View Post
One of the many reasons I ditched my 1032's....My ears were really tired at the end of the day, like someone scrubbed them with steel wool gently. The K+H's I have now are not fatiguing at all. And, I agree, Genny's do not translate as well, it's always like, "what happened to the high end?".
Well, FWIW, juding the brand Genelec by a speaker that was a studio standard 20 years ago (I remember that the 1032 and 1031 were in almost every studio I worked in that time, alongside NS10s) is not fair.

The new models are completely different, and by 'new' I'm even talking about the old 80xx series, which is also out now for what - 12 years?

Again, IMO all of the newer Genelec speakers I've heard are very very fine speakers.
Old 18th September 2019
  #15
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nixt's Avatar
Just out of curiosity, which subwoofer are you gonna use ?
Old 18th September 2019
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nixt View Post
Just out of curiosity, which subwoofer are you gonna use ?
Not sure yet.
For the Dolby certification you need a lot of LF power.
So one of the Neumann 870 won't be enough. One of the big Genelecs would work though.
Which is then of course also a budget issue..

Let's see what Dolby say.
Old 18th September 2019
  #17
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Can you run two of the 870s?

Randall


Quote:
Originally Posted by kosmokrator View Post
Not sure yet.
For the Dolby certification you need a lot of LF power.
So one of the Neumann 870 won't be enough. One of the big Genelecs would work though.
Which is then of course also a budget issue..

Let's see what Dolby say.
Old 18th September 2019
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kosmokrator View Post
Not sure yet.
For the Dolby certification you need a lot of LF power.
So one of the Neumann 870 won't be enough. One of the big Genelecs would work though.
Which is then of course also a budget issue..

Let's see what Dolby say.
If you plan to have sub(s), I guess the S360 would show itself from another side; its rollof at 35 Hz is very sharp, and having extra membrane area to take some stress off of the 10 inch woofer of S360 would lead to even lower distortion from ca. 80 Hz to 1200 Hz as well.

A sub would make the S360 a sort of 2.5 way speaker. No coincidence it was released together with 7382.

And now you have the W371 as well for a full 3 way S360 based system.

Old 18th September 2019
  #19
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We tested the S360 also with the Genelec sub.
Good combination, but still the Neumanns won.
Old 18th September 2019
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quadraphonics View Post
Can you run two of the 870s?

Randall
Should be possible, yes.
Old 18th September 2019
  #21
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We have a few rooms with the single Genelec subs. Granted, our rooms are slightly different, but I think the bass dispersion in the room would be more even if I had two smaller subs that I could position differently.

Randall


Quote:
Originally Posted by kosmokrator View Post
Should be possible, yes.
Old 18th September 2019
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quadraphonics View Post
We have a few rooms with the single Genelec subs. Granted, our rooms are slightly different, but I think the bass dispersion in the room would be more even if I had two smaller subs that I could position differently.

Randall
Good info, thanks Randall.
According to the Dolby Room Calculator we might have to stack the subs though to achieve the necessary headroom.
Old 18th September 2019
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kosmokrator View Post
We tested the S360 also with the Genelec sub.
Good combination, but still the Neumanns won.
May I ask which sub you used with the S360, and did you use GLM to pair the S360 and the sub to achieve phase alignment?

In another post you worried about subwoofer headroom. Both 7382 (ca. 130 dB), but W371 too (ca. 120 dB, more in stereo or multi channel configuration) offer quite some headroom?
Old 20th September 2019
  #24
Gear Maniac
 

Sorry for being late to the party, but congrats on the Neumanns.
I see you are in Salzburg and Berlin, if I would have known earlier, I would have invited you to my Studio in Berlin, Dolby approved Atmos Home with the Neumanns as LCR. PM me anyway, if you are around, you're always welcome.

About the KH120 as surrounds or tops:
According to what Dolby told me a year ago, the KH120 don't qualify for Atmos. Even though on Neumann paper they do, in reality they have a 5-6db lower SPL. Kinda like the VW of speakers https://static.gearslutz.com/board/i...lies/smile.gif
Old 20th September 2019
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clipgod View Post
Sorry for being late to the party, but congrats on the Neumanns.
I see you are in Salzburg and Berlin, if I would have known earlier, I would have invited you to my Studio in Berlin, Dolby approved Atmos Home with the Neumanns as LCR. PM me anyway, if you are around, you're always welcome.

About the KH120 as surrounds or tops:
According to what Dolby told me a year ago, the KH120 don't qualify for Atmos. Even though on Neumann paper they do, in reality they have a 5-6db lower SPL. Kinda like the VW of speakers https://static.gearslutz.com/board/i...lies/smile.gif
Thanks Clipgod. I'm not too often in Berlin these days, but when I'm visiting das Dicke B I'll get in touch.
Thanks for the info on the 120s, funnily enough Dolby told me exactly the opposite regarding the KH870 sub. Apparently on paper it's performing worse than Dolby thinks.
Old 20th September 2019
  #26
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the kh870 is a veeery capable sub and mentioned issues/confusion with dolby are only further prove how much flawed their ponzi scheme is: too bad there is no way around them!
Old 20th September 2019
  #27
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What did you end up using for your overheards if you don't mind me asking?

Randall


Quote:
Originally Posted by clipgod View Post
Sorry for being late to the party, but congrats on the Neumanns.
I see you are in Salzburg and Berlin, if I would have known earlier, I would have invited you to my Studio in Berlin, Dolby approved Atmos Home with the Neumanns as LCR. PM me anyway, if you are around, you're always welcome.

About the KH120 as surrounds or tops:
According to what Dolby told me a year ago, the KH120 don't qualify for Atmos. Even though on Neumann paper they do, in reality they have a 5-6db lower SPL. Kinda like the VW of speakers https://static.gearslutz.com/board/i...lies/smile.gif
Old 21st September 2019
  #28
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by quadraphonics View Post
What did you end up using for your overheards if you don't mind me asking?

Randall
Hi Randall,

for the surround, overhead and Wides I went with KS Digital:

C5 for overhead
C8 for surrounds
A100 for the Wides


best,
Nico
Old 23rd September 2019
  #29
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Thanks for that. I am assuming there is no issue getting them to blend against the 7.0 bed of Neumans?

Randall


Quote:
Originally Posted by clipgod View Post
Hi Randall,

for the surround, overhead and Wides I went with KS Digital:

C5 for overhead
C8 for surrounds
A100 for the Wides


best,
Nico
Old 24th September 2019
  #30
Gear Maniac
 

Not really. MTRX and SPQ Card is your friend.

The 420 are flush mounted behind the screen, so even 420s as surrounds would sound different, as they would be on speakerstands. Proberly tuned, the KS Digital blend nice with the Neumanns.
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