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Thread: Ashly XR1001 vs JBL M552

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    Senior Member Jakob's Avatar
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    Ashly XR1001 vs JBL M552

    Hi!

    Has anyone done a comparison between the two? I use the M552 as a sub x-over and thinks it does that job fine, but wasn't overly excited when I tried it with my ME150's and 2435 drivers with a x-over point of 800-1000hz. Is the Ashly better sounding?


    Regards: Jakob

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    Heather [Senorita member] hjames's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jakob View Post
    Hi!

    Has anyone done a comparison between the two? I use the M552 as a sub x-over and thinks it does that job fine, but wasn't overly excited when I tried it with my ME150's and 2435 drivers with a x-over point of 800-1000hz. Is the Ashly better sounding?


    Regards: Jakob
    I have used both when working with a biamp system and a crossover of approx 300Hz for my 2235s and 2122s in my 4341 systems. For me, the Ashley sounded better, and has the ability to change the slope shape at the crossover point ...
    But thats not exactly the question you asked ...
    2ch: Oppo, JoLida 502CRC, JBL L212, 18ti,240ti; Heath AS101, Von Schweikert VR4
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    Senior Member grumpy's Avatar
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    Hi Jakob,

    Is the M552 the only device providing the crossover function?
    If so, it might be that no generic crossover will provide satisfactory listening.
    If I recall correctly, there was a fairly well worked up passive crossover for
    the 435Be/H9800 here somewhere... Sorry if I may have missed details in
    other threads, regarding your setup. -grumpy

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    Senior Member Jakob's Avatar
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    Yes, sorry, I forgot to mention that. I use G.T's compensation circuit for the 2435's so I guess they should sound just fine. I'm interested in trying out the Ashly since they are reasonably priced, but no idea in doing that if it's no step up compared to the M552. I thought the M552 sounded dull and lifeless with limited dynamics. Maybe I should just go all in and buy the Marchand all-tubed XM26?

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    Senior Member grumpy's Avatar
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    I've played with the M553 and did not have the same experience, but
    our sensitivities could be different. Has consideration been given to the
    combined 24dB/oct slope of the M552 when added to the compensation
    network (i.e., any low freq rolloff components left out)? Have you considered
    a full passive network, perhaps the LF portion analogous to the 3100 network?
    (likely less $$$ than a full-on Marchand)

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    Senior Member Jakob's Avatar
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    Thank You Grumpy for your replies!
    I think both G.T and later Zilch used 24dB/oct filters in their work with the comp. circuit for the 2435. When listening the sound seems to be linear over the frequency spectra, and the imaging is great. However, compared to my all passive (using n333 filters) setup with E145, 2450 and 2405 the ME150 and 2435 combo seems lifeless and grey. So far I blame the crossover, 'cause I think if they are setup properly, these drivers should do as good a job as the others.

    Just like You suggest I've considered going fully passive and if so use the LF part of the S3100. The problem is the HF part. Should I use the comp. circuit together with an ordinary 12 or 18 dB/oct crossover? There isn't a JBL 2435 passive filter I just can rip, and I'm not that good in developing my own filters... Any suggestions? Maybe use a passive for the LF and an active + comp. circuit for the HF?

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    Hi Jakob,

    Quote Originally Posted by Jakob
    Just like You suggest I've considered going fully passive and if so use the LF part of the S3100. The problem is the HF part. Should I use the comp. circuit together with an ordinary 12 or 18 dB/oct crossover? There isn't a JBL 2435 passive filter I just can rip, and I'm not that good in developing my own filters... Any suggestions? Maybe use a passive for the LF and an active + comp. circuit for the HF?
    Some Thoughts :

    - I'd suggest you keep a 24 db per octave electronic crossover on the woofer .

    - Redesign GTs' "Key Filter" to include a 2 pole bump filter set to hipass at around 750 hz ( it first needs to buttress up the lower response of the 2435 on the H9800 before starting its LF roll-off ) .

    - The Hipass Amp ( when Biamped ) only needs a simple in line filter ( capacitor ) whos' F3 is set 2 octaves below the chosen crossover point ( 150 to 200 hz is good ) . This approach has the advantage of one not listening to any extra electronics in the single chain . The disadvantage ? One needs to balance the horn circuit with a volume knob on the horn amp ( this must be present ) . Personally, I'd replace any amp ( without attenuators ) before giving up on this approach .



    -Since you admit to not being able to develop a new HP filter more to your liking, I suggest you hire someone who can .

    - The candidates need to have those components on hand with enough knowledge ( & motivation ) to proceed to a successfull conclusion . These prerequisites drastically limit the field of candidates to around three from what I see ( & I'm not one of them ).

    - If after a complete redesign such as I'm suggesting ( & you are biamping in the method like I recommend ) & things are still a bit lifeless for you / then have the filter designer lessen the overall attenuation on GTs' filter in 1.5 db increments / until you hear something a bit less smoothed sounding .



    - ( There's no shame in admitting that you prefer to listen to a horn-driver a little less throttled back ) .
    - For reference ; look at Zilches' voltage drives for this filter / at 20K it already has @ 6 db of attenuation built into it . That's quite drastic & should be audible .
    - Myself ? I prefer a HF compensation filter ( for my Altec 288s ) that isn't attenuating much of anything after 10 or 12K . "Attenuation" also has a signature sound .


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    Quote Originally Posted by Jakob View Post
    When listening the sound seems to be linear over the frequency spectra, and the imaging is great. However, compared to my all passive (using n333 filters) setup with E145, 2450 and 2405 the ME150 and 2435 combo seems lifeless and grey. So far I blame the crossover, 'cause I think if they are setup properly, these drivers should do as good a job as the others.
    Greg uses a charge-coupled DX-1 which is substantially better than either the JBL M552 or Ashly. I think I still have the voltage drives for the H4338 / 435BE and H4338 / 476BE active filters on an old hard drive. I'll have to look in a couple weeks when I have time (that computer is out of service right now).
    Quote Originally Posted by Jakob View Post
    Yes, sorry, I forgot to mention that. I use G.T's compensation circuit for the 2435's so I guess they should sound just fine.
    The circuit was designed specifically for the H4338 and 435BE. I posted it for Zilch to play around with because I was getting tired of watching him grope around in the dark post after post after post. You may need to play around with it as well to adapt it to your personal situation. If I remember correctly, there are actually several compensation examples available for study. And if I remember correctly the H4338 / 476BE compensation circuit is completely different. I think some of them use large shunt capacitors in the 100 to 200 uF range and that usually means using N.P.E.'s. Alot of this tweaking is simply beyond what most people want to dink with.

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    Heather [Senorita member] hjames's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4313B View Post
    Greg uses a charge-coupled DX-1 which is substantially better than either the JBL M552 or Ashly. I think I still have the voltage drives for the H4338 / 435BE and H4338 / 476BE active filters on an old hard drive. I'll have to look in a couple weeks when I have time (that computer is out of service right now).
    I gather the CC DX-1 is a rarified bird ...
    2ch: Oppo, JoLida 502CRC, JBL L212, 18ti,240ti; Heath AS101, Von Schweikert VR4
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    Quote Originally Posted by hjames View Post
    I gather the CC DX-1 is a rarified bird ...
    Yeah, especially since some bright bulb in Singapore saw fit to dump the one hundred and eighty DX-1's still in stock into the harbor for use as an artifical reef. Both Paul and Greg were nearly as horrified as I was to discover that previously unknown tidbit of information. We were all set to buy a nice quantity of DX-1's at a great price Paul graciously arranged. Numerous forum members had already sent in their money and the big check was already made out to JBL.

    I can't remember who it was who actually designed the filters. I think it was the Levinson team.

    The DX-1 is nowhere near as versatile as the M552 or Ashly out of the box however. One actually has to design and build their own custom crossover cards.

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    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    I use G.T's compensation circuit for the 2435's so I guess they should sound just fine.
    Maybe not out of the box it depends on the horn. What horn are you using?? If it's the 9800 copies I would build up a 9800 crossover. At least use it as a baseline. You would have to modify it for 2 way use.

    Rob

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    Hi Jakob,

    Some additional thoughts about ( the dull sound that you experience );

    - If you haven't already, you need to check out the relative health ( specification ) of your 2435h drivers ( I'm assuming you bought them on eBay from that Ca seller " Hector " ) . If you can't do this yourself, you'll need to hire someone to do it for you ( maybe Guido , for instance ) .

    - There's a reason these 2435s are sold out JBLs' back-door / & that's because they are "factory seconds" that don't meet JBLs' "QC ( Quality Control ) standards" . I don't have any 2435s here , so I don't really know what it would take to bring them back into spec .. A complete cleaning of the gap ( with new ferrofluid installed ) would be a good first step .

    - I own many 2431H drivers ( also purchased from Hector ) / & from my perspective, they all need new diaphragms to matchup to the glowing specs. that I've seen published here at LHF. Most have ferrofluid splattered about the inside ( including up under the dome ) indicating they were either "overdriven ( for the weight of the fluid )" / or / the fluid weight that JBL chose was a bit light for the sound reiforcement application ( they were designed for ) .
    - A carefull cleaning of the gap & the diaphragm has improved the response of most of the drivers / though / I intend to purchase replacement daphragms before our Cdn dollar sinks back to 80¢ USD.

    - I'd recommend checking the drivers before spending money on other crossovers ( though a better crossover than the 552 is still recommended ) .

    <>

    ps ;

    - there's no free lunch when buying these "eBay specials" .

    - also, custom designing HF contour filters for compression drivers that don't meet spec. / is well, pointless .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Earl K View Post
    - there's no free lunch when buying these "eBay specials" .
    That's a fact.

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    Senior Señor boputnam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jakob View Post
    I thought the M552 sounded dull and lifeless with limited dynamics. Maybe I should just go all in and buy the Marchand all-tubed XM26?
    Or maybe a Bryston...

    Quote Originally Posted by Earl K View Post
    - I'd suggest you keep a 24 db per octave electronic crossover on the woofer.
    Second.
    bo

    "Indeed, not!!"

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    Administrator Mr. Widget's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Earl K View Post
    - I'd recommend checking the drivers before spending money on other crossovers ( though a better crossover than the 552 is still recommended ) .
    Yes, yes, yes!

    As I read your post Jakob, my first thought was check your 2435s. Yes, many people have bought secondhand examples of them and have loved them, but most people here on the forum have no idea what they are actually supposed to sound like.

    About three years ago Zilch and I measured a pile of JBL's 3" diaphragmed drivers on several horns. At that time we discovered that his pair of eBay 2435s measured quite differently from each other. This caused us to suspect them and Zilch sent them back to JBL for servicing. When they retuned they matched each other nicely and also closely matched a sample 435Be. If interested you can slog through this old thread:

    http://www.audioheritage.org/vbullet...ead.php?t=6050

    I think the driver will be the cause of this lifelessness. As for the M552, I would seriously consider an upgrade here as well, but I am not sure it is entirely to blame. Most of the JBL crossovers I have heard have sounded hard and metallic, but I am not sure that dull and lifeless would be my first impression. (I am not including the DX-1. It is a very different animal than the typical pro-audio crossover.)


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