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Thread: New JBL 4348

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giskard
    That 4338 looks like a nice update to the L300/4333.
    Is that 650,000 for one speaker or two? 650,000.00 JPY = 6,223.39 USD

    If that's for the pair, that's probably pretty close or even better to an inflation adjusted pair of L300's. I've no doubt the technoloy/fidelity improvement is well worth it, but if that's the price each, I just don't think the American market will pick up on it, other than those that travel in the K2/Synthesis circles...

    I may have to track down current pro component prices, just to get an idea what building "current" versions of 4333/4343 would come up to...

    John

  2. #32
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    Well this is just my two cents but the current prices that jbl is asking are most likely fair market value. I am not in the market for any of there current lineup. But if I was in the market for the new product's from JBL I would shop around for the best price and just buy it. About Westlake's if your pissed off about the JBL prices you do not even want to look at westlakes I remember Ken P. Saying the ones he had were going for $60.000 and they are not even the top of the westlake line. Maybe we should look at the prices of pick up trucks and cars. What were they selling for in the 70's??? What are they selling for now??? I drive all over the U.S.A. and Canada and everyone is Driving brand new rides. I had the pleasure of getting a inside look at one of our forum members new van. If the shaw of iran was still around he would be tooling around in one of these.I guess it all depends on what turns your crank and what your priorities are.Seems to me the asian market is where it's at and the north american market is not as far as speakers go and JBL know's it.

  3. #33
    Administrator Mr. Widget's Avatar
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    Now we're talkin... bag that silly little honkster.

    Ok, I realize that by pushing the crossover point up you can get away with a mid horn with lower cut off... but I bet this bigger brother sounds better.

    Ti Dome did bring up some good points... even when this stuff is available at 1/2 or more off in the second hand US market people are not tripping over themselves to get it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Giskard
    One thing that is blatantly obvious is that the days of being able to walk into the neighborhood Audio store to see and hear all the JBL's in their replendent glory are gone.
    Are there any neighborhood Audio stores left anyway? Come on guys this is the next millennium. The only company making real cash in audio is a funny little computer company that stole the walkman market from Sony while THEY were living in the past.

    Widget
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  4. #34
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    Smile

    Okay, let's combine these two:

    Quote Originally Posted by Giskard
    One thing that is blatantly obvious is that the days of being able to walk into the neighborhood Audio store to see and hear all the JBL's in their replendent glory are gone.

    Maybe people find it irksome that not every single model JBL makes today is available at least somewhere in the U.S. to see and hear, whether a purchase is in their future or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Widget
    Are there any neighborhood Audio stores left anyway? Come on guys this is the next millennium. The only company making real cash in audio is a funny little computer company that stole the walkman market from Sony while THEY were living in the past.

    Widget
    When Apple finally figured out that the authorized retail channel concept was not working out, it decided to open its own stores. Whereas once people could find a few Apple products here and a few broken ones there, now there was a place to go where everything was available, and these stores were put in demographically significant areas so that anyone, Mac user or not, could walk in, see the entire line, and find something that they might be able to use: iPod, PowerBook, iMac, digital camera, software, printer, etc. People are encouraged to come in, browse, use the stuff, and stay as long as they want.

    Now speakers may be seen as a harder sell in that environment, but I think it's worth consideration. An Apple PowerBook can be a $2600 purchase, a G5 could go over $3000, an an XServe might hit $5000+.( I know because we just bought one.) By going to the Apple Store, I could see the entire line, try it out, and get what I needed. And I didn't have to subsidize the middleman (distributor).

    Obviously Harman would need to do its research at least as well as Apple, but most Apple Stores were profitable within a year of operation, and traffic and revenue keep growing.

    One other thing: JBL like Apple is a vertical company, in that it does pretty much the whole widget. It makes the speakers, builds the cabinets, assembles the product, and prepares it for distribution. The thing it doesn't really have is the true retail presence, which we've sort of been grousing about.

    (An online store is not a retail presence in my mind.)

    So should JBL continue to compete for space with consumer-priced competitors in low margin stores where only the mass market shops, usually for a bargain, or is there another way? Should it follow Apple's example and build its brand with a few dedicated shops where, once even one product (iPod) or two (Mac Mini) take off, then suddenly BB, CC, GG, Target, Robinson-May, and everyone else (even HP) suddenly want to sell the product?

    Just more speculation on a theme...
    Out.

  5. #35
    Steve Gonzales
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    Yeah nice "updated" L300

    It looks like it is also a Japan only market. Does anyone know ?. Looks like my marketing strategy IS working! In Japan.......

  6. #36
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    Aesthetically, a good looking horn - gotta love that .

  7. #37
    Steve Gonzales
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    [QUOTE=Giskard]One thing that is blatantly obvious is that the days of being able to walk into the neighborhood Audio store to see and hear all the JBL's in their replendent glory are gone.

    Ahhhh.... Those were the days!!!!!! I'm starting to sound like my Father. But really, wasn't that COOL!. I actually used to play hooky to go to Bakersfield Audio and absolutely marvel at all the Great JBL models, they would even discuss and demonstrate them for me even though they knew I didn't have a dime. I would then peddle my Schwinn all the way across town to Casa Moore Stereo, just to hear the Mighty Altec 19's. The salespeople there had a pro Disc Jockey friend who did some fantastic Vinyl to Reel to Reel transfers and they used to demo the 19's with a Technics RS1500US and boy did THAT just do it for me!! This very thing is why I am so sad about the state of affairs in the domestic market. What happened?. I guess all those little snot -nosed kids turned out to be Harvard MBA's and put the Almighty DOLLAR bottom line -period- new aged, global- CRAP into the mix. Do I blame them?. No one thing can be blamed. As many of you have so rightly pointed out, JBL went where the MONEY is. There are so many of us on this site that are blameless. Widget, you nailed it, if I'm being truthful, it is that, by and large, the American Consumer is generally to blame. We want it cheap and a lot of it, as Widget correctly asserted. Walmart "think" is America "think". Somewhere down the line we lost track, AND our Market, for what appears to be Awesome incarnations of the Legendary Models of great days gone bye. So, you see, that I'm not on a soap box just to cry FOUL!. No, I just echo what Giskard so eloquently stated. You've got to admire the Japanese, they didn't steal the market, they just continued to SUPPORT IT!. And for their unwaivering loyalty, LOOK WHAT THEY GET!!!!. I think what really stirs so much emotion from this small community is that we are witnessing the first big salvo in what is sure to be a long line of "can't ever haves"-at least without going through a lot of international mumbo-jumbo and extra $$$$. I think that if you didn't at least feel a little disappointed about it, you'd better check your pulse.....

  8. #38
    Administrator Mr. Widget's Avatar
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    Walmart's America is one of my pet peeves but...

    You know there is also the changing times. Call it fad or fashion. In the 70's when JBL ruled the Earth (think dinosaurs here) home entertainment, i.e. stereos were all the rage. Even my dad who doesn't give a damn about music felt compelled to enter an audio shop and buy a system that cost him a month's wages. I of course applauded his decision and soon began upgrading his stereo for him. For the record my practically deaf parents currently have a NAD system with Klipsch Belle clones I built for them.

    So yesterday a buddy came over to borrow some shop time. I suggested he take a minute and give the Project May system a listen. Yes he was blown away. Yes he had exactly the right expression on his face. Yes in the 70's he had a Sansui etc. system. He has the means to buy what he would like, he owns multiple homes, drives a Ducati and Porsche Boxter, and yes he owns a Bose surround system. When I said I guess you forgot what good can sound like his reply was, "That was amazing!" ...will he sell his Blows system? Not a chance in hell. He has no interest in this shit.

    Widget

  9. #39
    Steve Gonzales
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    Yup!

    Still, it blows me away to think that in a country of 300,000,000 PLUS, that we lost a market for a couple thousand pairs. You ARE right Widget. Hell, when I was an installer for NW Sony Only (sorry), I retrofitted a TON of Dr.Bloses' sh#ttie lil' cubes. As I said before, I am thankful for what I DO HAVE and for the ability to share this common bond amongst like-minded people. That is all I REALLY need anyways. Break a leg this weekend Bud.

  10. #40
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    Angry A couple more rants

    If you frequent other forums like I do (and I know you do), then you know that some Americans are willing to spend an unseemly amount of money for speakers that I would consider marginal at best. Heck, some folks will even spend thousands of dollars to buy speakers over the internet--speakers they HAVE NEVER HEARD but took another fan's word that they were terrific.

    I tried for a while to evangelize JBL on AVS Forums, but discussions on the higher end stuff died after a few posts. The only thing any one talks about over there in the JBL line is the Northridge E Series, and all too often it's "I heard these JBLs at CC and they sounded great but instead should I get these Rockets/Axioms/Athenas/whatevers that I've never heard but the threads are buzzing about them?" BTW the threads are usually buzzing from company reps that are juicing up the brands with testimonials.

    There are so many more speaker brands today and lines within those brands that JBL doesn't have a chance of getting the traction it once had. Anybody with a jig and a mitre saw can buy components and build speakers, then sell them on the Web. Get a fews hacks to praise them, and you've got the speaker flavor of the month. They don't have to sound good, they just have to LOOK like they sound good. "Sh!t, what great looking speakers. I bet they sound GREAT!"

    -------------------

    I see that Harman's Revel brand is going down market with a new line that looks a lot like a hybrid Infinity/JBL with a price in the $1200/pr bracket.

    is that all about? Well, how about the high end stuff isn't generating volume sales in the US, so let's go to the consumer's level.

    http://www.revelspeakers.com/products/images.asp?ID=19

    Another JBL episode in the making at Harman?
    Out.

  11. #41
    RIP 2014 Ken Pachkowsky's Avatar
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    Hmmmm

    I sure stired up a hornets nest here!

    NO WAY, would I have ever been in the position to buy my Westlakes if they were over the 10,000.00 mark. As it was, I pushed my budget to the limit.

    Westlakes prices for new HR1's at 60,000.00 (including the 4 way HRX crossover) is simply out of the realm for home use. And John is right the HR1 is second from the top. The SM1 is 90,000.00 with black wrinkle paint cabs and 120,000.00 with walnut cabs. Hmmm 30,000.00 more for walnut...gimme a break. They do come with a custom 5-way crossover similar to the HRX. The HRX is now 12,000.00 as well. Went up 3,000 in the last year.

    I keep my eye on Ebay for BBSM Westlakes. These can be a bargain at times and are damned fine sounding speakers.

    By the way, if you are a well established member of the forum and live close by I would be happy to have you over to listen to the HR1's.

    Ken

  12. #42
    Senior Member 4345's Avatar
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    Complacency

    By not catering to U.S. enthusiast, I think JBL hurts their brand in the long run. In high end circles you rarely hear their name mentioned. Eventually, this may lessen the value of their brand and may effect sales in the future. This effect may even transfer over into pro sales. It may take a while, but it may happen.

    Just because things might be going well now (has anyone been following HAR stock for the last few years), does not mean they will stay that way. Altec had a huge market share in the 60's and 70's and let it all slip away. New competition may emerge in the future and do the same to JBL. Unfortunately, in todays world of industry consolidation and the large regulatory burden placed on business, it makes it that much more difficult for new companies to get started. Perhaps this new competitor will come from China.

    I am sure there are some at JBL today that can excuse their diminished market share in the consumer end of the business. I am sure this market share must be much less than it was in the 60's or 70's. They probably have lots of excuses. However, I think the JBL consumer division is being mis-handled. My friends all have Bose systems. NOT JBL. Word of mouth among the enthusiast crowd might influence the less interested in buying more JBL products.

    In the meantime we will just have to buy JBL's new pro-products (which are very good) and vintage consumer models. I am sure most of us on this forum suffer from too much JBL gear rather than too little.

  13. #43
    Charley Rummel
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    Originally Posted by Giskard
    One thing that is blatantly obvious is that the days of being able to walk into the neighborhood Audio store to see and hear all the JBL's in their replendent glory are gone.

    One of my acquaitences who owns a 3-store chain in the Chicago, area which caters exclusively to high end audio and (later) home theatre and has been around since the late '60's, told me that one fine day in the late '70's (right after the Beatrice acquizition ) the Man from JBL stopped by to meet with them to introduce himself (their previous rep had just lost the line) and explain a new marketing plan in which JBL was going to require all of their dealers to carry their up and coming new line of mid-line and economy products as well as the high end stuff if they expect to remain JBL dealers. Since this wasn't pursuant to their business plan, and the Man conducted himself in a way that was a little too cavalier for their liking, they made their decision in under 2 seconds to drop JBL all together.

    Regards,
    Charley

  14. #44
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    I've heard the same story unfortunately.

  15. #45
    Tom Loizeaux
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    So Ken, many of us JBL owners wonder (and dream) about Westlakes. You've owned big JBL studio monitors and now have the Westlakes. We've followed your crossover work and know that you've labored to get your Westlakes in top form. Could you please tell us how you think they compare to the large JBL studio monitors.

    Tom

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