JBL N38 Bookshelf Speakers

JBL N38 Bookshelf Speakers 

DESCRIPTION

Northridge Series Hometheater Shielded 3-Way Floorstanding Speaker - 8" PolyPlas Bass Driver, 4" PolyPlas Midrange Driver, 3/4" Titanium-Laminate Dome Tweeter

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 78  
[Sep 18, 2012]
JBL N38
Audio Enthusiast

I needed a decent pair of stereo speakers for my upstairs den and I found a mint condition pair of these on an online audio classifieds site for $90. The guy was upgrading and priced these for quick sale, and at that price I didn't think twice. Brought them home, hooked them up to my Yamaha Natural Sound stereo receiver (100wpc) and played some Santana. I was smiling ear to ear, quite happy about my recent deal. The sound is warm and bright, with a natural sound stage and good stereo imaging (at 5ft apart). The tweeters are crisp and articulate and the midrange sounds smooth and matches well with the tweeters. The 8" woofer on this model does a great job in the low frequency end, I was surprised by the amount of "thump" these things have. While the bass isn't the deepest, it is abundantly present in all music on these speakers (I even have to turn the bass down on my receiver from time to time, depending on the music). One feature I like is the front firing port. It was impossible for me to put these in corners in the room I have so this front firing design came in handy as the low frequency response on these speakers is not influenced by corners/wall proximity as much as rear ported models would be. The build quality is very good, sturdy cabinets and quality materials (albeit plastic for some parts), and they have a nice look to them. I could see these being easily 4-5 times what I paid, so with that in mind, I give these speakers a 5/5!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Feb 10, 2010]
JohnMogambo
AudioPhile

Excellent speakers. Ton of bass, good highs. Still strong after 8 years of heavy use.
These are powered by Denon 1802.
Sound great for music and home theater.
Earlier, I had the JBL MR series and they sounded great as well

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Dec 28, 2003]
joe2m
Audio Enthusiast

Strength:

Very good imaging, solid tight bass (maybe not quite enough of it), highs are bright but are of good quality.

Weakness:

Annoying mid-range distortion on certain music. Narrow dispersion compared to other speakers I have used. Not an impressive stage presence.

For the price these speakers sound pretty good. They tend to be alittle bright but this quality alone would not stop them from having an excellent rating. This area is subjective, some like brighter speakers some like softer. The point I don't like about these speakers is a mid-range distortion that appears at moderate or higher volumes. This doesn't show up in all music I listen to but I find it aggravating when it shows up. When compared to my American Acoustics speakers they don't come close. I can push my amps as hard as I can and I have difficulty getting any appreciatable speaker distortion with the AA speakers but the JBLs die off. I am currently refurbing some Genesis Physics II speakers which I think are extremely good speakers. You can find an old pair of Genesis or EPI speakers for much less than 300 dollars and these will not disappoint. The technolgy hasn't changed much in speakers in the last 40-50 years and you wouldbe better off finding vintage speakers than purchasing anything under $300 from anybody. With the possible exception of Human Speakers. These are made in the Genesis/EPI tradition and the cheapest one of them will smoke anything in the $300 range or less. I will probably keep these speakers for my basement stereo but my 14 year old AA's will remain my mains.

Similar Products Used:

Genesis, real RTRs, American Acoustics

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
3
[Oct 06, 2003]
pkkiran
Casual Listener

Strength:

everything, looks, highs, bass.

Weakness:

none so far.

I have made all kinds of research before buying these speakers, and haven'nt seen even 1 negative review. Although some people tell you to buy Paradigm/Energy etc speakers, you will have to listen to the N38 first to appreciate it. First thing, you DO NOT need a subwoofer with these speakers, they put tons of bass if you can adjust bass in your receiver. But getting a sub is always a good idea for home theater use. For music, these speakers do not need a sub. Very good highs and mids, with excellent bass. I am very happy with these speakers.

Similar Products Used:

bose

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Oct 06, 2003]
Kris
Casual Listener

Strength:

everything, looks, highs, bass.

Weakness:

none so far.

I have made all kinds of research before buying these speakers, and haven'nt seen even 1 negative review. Although some people tell you to buy Paradigm/Energy etc speakers, you will have to listen to the N38 first to appreciate it. First thing, you DO NOT need a subwoofer with these speakers, they put tons of bass if you can adjust bass in your receiver. But getting a sub is always a good idea for home theater use. For music, these speakers do not need a sub. Very good highs and mids, with excellent bass. I am very happy with these speakers.

Similar Products Used:

bose

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Jul 31, 2003]
dsyg
Audio Enthusiast

Strength:

Price-performace. Finish. Whole audible range properly supported.

Weakness:

Soundstage.

I ran into the N28 first and had a great impression. Then I thought the N38 would keep all 28's qualities plus some extra bass. It did. The sound is excellent for a budget speaker like this. Sound is VERY detailed and clear. Highs and mids are very pleasant (and present), lows are tight and strong. The finish is first class and they look very nice with the grill off. I have them connected to a Pioneer Elite DV-45A and Yamaha RX-V430. Not part of a home theatre yet but stereo only.

Similar Products Used:

Paradigm, Polk, Jamo, B&W

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
[Jul 28, 2003]
G
Audio Enthusiast

I couldn't be happier with the JBL N38II's. I purchased them to replace my JBL N28II's as main speakers in my Home Theater. I am currently running the N38II's up front, the N28II's in surround, and N26II's for front and rear center channels. I've got a JBL PB12 sub. Everything's running out of a Yamaha RX-V2300 receiver. Incredible, pure crisp sound all around. I originally demo'd the JBL Studio series speakers, and found the sound of the Northridge series to be more pleasing (to my ears). Northridge all-around...that's my two cents. Check them out.

Similar Products Used:

N28II, N26II, N24II, NCenterII, PB12

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
[Jul 10, 2003]
milaz001
Audio Enthusiast

Strength:

Good bass extension, very good imaging.

Weakness:

None.

These are terrific floorstanding speakers which would do well in most theater or 2-channel applications. I have them as fronts in a theater setup, and they are fabulous. Many folks prefer the Studio series when demoing in a store; don't sell the Northridge series short until you've given them a proper demo at home. Good base response, nice soundstage, and very good imaging--all important characteristics for theater use. In many rooms, you might be able to get away without a sub, using the N38IIs. Highly recommended.

Similar Products Used:

Paradigm, B&W, Polk, Infinity, Athena

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Jun 04, 2003]
dwayland
Audio Enthusiast

Strength:

A tad top heavy. Very solid. Tight Bass responce from a "Reflex" speaker.

Weakness:

I little light on the Bass side, but don't let that change your mind.

These are actually the N38II's. These are simply fantastic speakers for home theater and or for music. The immaging these speakers create is simply fantastic. The sounds envelopes you even whith no special sound processing. They are very crisp and the bass is very tight, but a tad on the light side. If your reciever has the ability to kick up the bass a couple notches I would highly suggest doing so, but it depends on the type of music listened to.

Similar Products Used:

JBL S-CENTERII (Center) JBL N38II (Mains) JBL S36 (Surrounds) JBL PB12 (Sub)

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
[Mar 17, 2003]
grx8
AudioPhile

Strength:

Great highs, mids and bass. Tight bass. Very goodlooking without the grill.

Weakness:

I blown a tweeter, but It was my fault, cause I play Queen´s Bicycle Race to high when the bicycles´rings start so it lbows. It was in full treble in the receiver.

I wrote a reviw about a year ago so I have try a lot this speakers until know. Overall performance? Great, just great. Sound very good with any type of music or movie you play them. From Rolling Stones to Pink FLoyd, amazing. If you play Eminem or Eric Clapton, amazing. Electronic music? great. Im using them with a Onkyo 494 reciever that handles 60 WT RMS per channel, so maybe with an 80 Wt receiver they should sound even better.

Similar Products Used:

Technics, Bose, Jamo, Paradigm. JBL beat them all.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 78  

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