JBL 4312A Floorstanding Speakers

4.07/5 (15 Reviews)


Product Description



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Reviews 1 - 5 (15 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Roni Solomon DDS a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: November 13, 2010

Bottom Line:   
I bought these from a pawn shop for less than $50 about one year ago. I read all about the JBL 4300 series on the major forums and I knew what lay before me was a great opportunity to try some coveted speakers. The cabinets were a little rough, but all the drivers were in good order. At the time I was coming off an East Coast speaker binge, the AR-4x, AR-3, KLH Model 6 and the like. The first piece of equipment I used these speakers with was a Pioneer SX-980. At first, I was really loving the top end and midrange, my 70s and 80s punk and rock LPs sounded great; I forgot all about the East Coast sound I was accustomed to.

Some time passed and I moved on to a restored McIntosh MC2105 with a PS Audio 4.6 Preamp, which was definitely an upgrade from my old Pioneer. I also moved into a new apartment where positioning became a challenge. High ceilings, an open floor plan, and hardwood floors made placing these speakers a real challenge. Two months passed where I absolutely hated these JBLs. I couldn't find any particular setup that I liked and it seemed that no matter what I did, every weakness of this particular speaker was highlighted. Off-axis listening was terrible, the highs seemed harsh and the bass was either boomy or non-existent depending on the placement.

It took me awhile before I finally found a setup that worked and I was able to tame most of the deficiencies that plagued my listening area. As a result, I have come to terms with these speakers, but it took a lot of consideration and careful placement. These speakers can benefit from being placed in corners, but the tradeoff is boomy bass. When you pull these away from the wall they will be incredibly bass shy with unimpressive performance. "Zilch plugs" may be a solution for those experiencing boomy bass in corner situations. Bringing the tweeter up to ear level helped improve my opinion of this speaker greatly. The level controls on the front of the speaker were great for the final tuning stages. Carpeting or floor treatments can minimize reflections and made a huge difference in my experience. There is a definite sweet spot in my listening area, and when I am in it, boy is it sweet.

Once I got the placement dialed in, I felt that my source material and amplification was more than adequate for these speakers. My McIntosh amp does a good job of coloring the material in a way that I can appreciate, warm while retaining detail, presence, and musicality. The bass still does not go down as much as I would like, but it is fast and accurate. I would like to add a sub to fill the lower registers, but I feel that these speakers are acceptable for the time being.

I can't say that these are for everyone, but I enjoy having them in my collection. If you're into rock, punk, or early electronic music, these are great. I prefer my AR-3s for classical or orchestral music (especially post-rock), but the 4312a does a fair job with these genres as well. They may be finicky, but I think they're worth the effort.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by David Hillman a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: December 23, 2006

Bottom Line:   
I have to agree with the review who said that people don't
understand what these speakers are supposed to be used
for and how they need to be positioned. As the name says,
these are control monitors. The are extremely revealing
and will sound horrible in some rooms (hardwood floors)
and with newer, bright amps. I've heard the 4312A in a
studio and it was pure heaven. They're fast and very
musical. I went out and bought
a pair of Control 10 monitors (same design) to use for PA
and home use. They're powered by a big, bright QSC pro
amp and I am not disappointed with the sound.
These speakers handle lots and lots of power. They
take a lot of the 500 watts from the big QSC. They
don't have a lot of bass, but it's tight, accurate bass.
These will need to be used with subwoofers, crossover
and an equalizer if you're planning on having a party.

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   ebay



Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:3
Submitted by edwardt a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: May 17, 2006

Bottom Line:   
Glad to have purchased this for £100 ($150), but I wouldn't have paid more than this.
The bass drops off rapidly below 60hz.
A very "boxed" sound as tweeter and mid range are on same horizontal plane.
The titanium dome is very tinny, very harsh on the ear. Outdated design and appallingly small soundstage.
Bass bottoms out at around 60hz (tested).
Not the best, sorry.

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $150.00

Purchased At:   Ebay



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Raimon a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: August 7, 2005

Bottom Line:   
after hear about this model a lot, finally I got a pair, I have to say this is one of the for rock music, I use them in a small room a sound very well

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Purchased At:   BARCELONA



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Lomtevas a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: March 2, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I have heard them all: the 5.1 speaker setups, subwoofer boxes/satellites, and plastic/paper cones. The 4312A continue to be my only speaker of choice.

I use them to play back my personal violin and piano performances off of DAT’s and reel to reel tapes. I pipe through them ordinary radio and store-bought disks of all kinds.

They do tend to be “bright” sounding because of the titanium domed tweeter and co-planar positioning with the midrange driver. So, I run them with a Carver m1.5t which deliberately warms the sound. This counter-balanced arrangement delivers a jaw-dropping performance no matter the type of music or its source. What is even more striking is that my 4312A’s date back to 1986 and my Carver system dates back nearly that far.

Let’s fast forward to the modern world: internet-based music. How good is it really? I had an idea to check out how good mp3’s really are. I connected an Athlon-equipped personal computer with a sound blaster PCI 128 sound card through a gold-ended cable I bought at Radio Shack. This wire ran into a Carver C-1 preamplifier which fed the amp and speakers.

The sound was as clear and as powerful as if I had used any tape or disk. Bit rates above 192 kbps yield the best defined and most properly spaced results. However, with complex rock and jazz, even 128 kbps sounds live.

So, based upon my ears and heart, the JBL 4312A’s are in incomparable purchase. If I was ever asked to render a recommendation to either a rich or poor person as to which speaker to buy with their money, the 4312A’s would be it. Value, longevity, musicality, and proficiency at rendering an impeccable sonic illusion make these speakers a precious possession.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $600.00

Purchased At:   Fort Dix Post Exchan




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