View Full Version : JBL mostly no-show at AES...

10-30-2004, 04:31 PM
Well, I stopped in for exhibits only today at the AES convention in San Francisco, and while just about everything imaginable in the pro-audio spectrum was represented, (the Moscone Center convention floor was packed with exhibits!), all JBL had was a little demo room showing the LSR series, (shared with Studer), a little booth on the floor selling JBL covers, (for EON, etc.), and a last booth shared with a bunch of manufacturers where all they had was a 2003 product CD. Not a single bit of info or even a single JBL pro series speaker represented anywhere else, (other than the LSR). While all the other big-name sound reinforcement manufacturers, (Meyer, EAW, Mackie, etc.), had mostly huge displays complete with hanging suspension systems, etc., it looks like Harman must not feel the bang for the buck is worth it at AES. I saw nothing from DBX or most of their other brands, other than at that booth with info CD's.

I really expected JBL to have a presence, especially with so much new stuff in their pro-sound division. Are they really that successful that they can completely shun AES? While I do admit they have quite a bit of info on their website, this was one event I at least expected they'd show up. They didn't even have any JBL reps in their studio demo room - the Studer reps said there were a couple JBL guys earlier, but didn't know what happened to them.

Just how DOES JBL promote their pro stuff?

Anyway, a lot of the other new stuff was incredible! Now I just need to win the lottery or something...


scott fitlin
10-30-2004, 05:22 PM
I always go to the AES when its in Manhattan at the Javits center, and I also found JBL to be aloof when it comes to showing on the floor! But in the last few years, JBL would have a booth, have most of their portable speakers, one or two cutaways of whatever they were premiering at the time, lots of posters, and lit! But, never, as they used to do back in the 70,s and 80,s, did they have any of the speakers they were showing hooked up for demoing! Just a static display. And whenever someone would question them on this, as I always did, they gave you major attitude! The last show I was at in manhattan, same thing, and then someone else came up and asked pretty much the same things I had, they got the same response, they didnt like it either, and also walked away!

Whatever is their buisiness and marketing strategies, they are ones I dont understand at all! In the meantime, all the other manufacturers had booths with working displays of their processors and EQ,s and you could fiddle with them while listening to music through headphones, and the big companies had full blown demo rooms set up. Genelec, Dynaudio, EAW, Meyer, TAD! These comapnies had nice setups and they were demoing their speakerts, the Genelec setup had a large area setup like a theatre with seating, facing a stage with the entire Genelec line, and then they when the seats were filled they closed the doors, and demoed the speakers. It was a great demo, people waited to get into this room, and everyone loved it! And TAD also had a good suite, with working speakers, they were featuring the push/pull cabinets at the time, and they let us pick music we wanted to hear, adjust volume and tone, and were very freindly to talk to! The main thing was that after being in any of the above demos, and talking to reps from these companies, everyone was smiling, talking about which new product they liked best, etc!

Everyone who walked away from the JBL booth, just walked away, some with frowns, some just expressionless, I have yet to figure out exactly how JBL runs its show! Or why they do and act the way they do.

:confused: :confused:

10-30-2004, 06:47 PM
A lot of the booths were set up for live auditioning, though obviously the sound reinforcement speaker booths were usually static, though most of them did have some cut-aways. Most of the small studio monitor booths were active, though, and several manufacturers, (Tannoy, in particular), had large live demo rooms. And some of the manufacturers even had special tech seminars detailing the usage and benefits of their systems. This is where JBL could have done some really nice stuff, but even the LSR monitors in the small demo room seemed to be more of an adjunct to the Studer stuff being demonstrated in the same room.

'Really a difference from earlier days of the AES, where JBL seemed to be one of the main presenters of technical seminars and papers... It just really seemed to me it would have been an excellent venue for comparing JBL with other stuff, at a place that lends itself to more detailed info. It's not like they would have had any real big expenses, (already being based in California). I wonder if they'll even show up at next year's convention, being that it's to be held in Barcelona, Spain...


Don McRitchie
10-30-2004, 09:07 PM
They seem to focus their efforts on the LA venue and not spend much when AES is out of town. I don't know the logic behind this. In 2001, Harman Pro had the largest amount of floor space of any vendor. They had virtually their entire line on display and a Vertec setup at the Staples Center that they were shuttling customers to. Sidney Harman was a featured speaker in one of the conference rooms.