JBL "Monitor" 4307 vs 4312G Beatdown!!!

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by JK47, Feb 22, 2020.

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  1. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    After listening to and being captivated by the monster JBL Cabaret speakers at EC Craig's Studio Jr. debut, that thankfully @purr1n bought, because I have no room for those beasts. I set out looking for a more friendly sized second set of speakers to compliment my Fostex BLH's, and I wanted to go in a different directions from simple, efficient, full/wide range horn speakers.

    After looking at vintage JBL's and a few Klipsch over the course of more than a year, I finally decided I didn't want to take on a someone else's project. Re-foaming a woofer wasn't my concern really, even correcting a sloppy previous job didn't seem too much of a big deal. It was the lack of replacement tweeters that worried me, as quite a few JBL's had dented tweeters that the seller swore didn't affect the sound, yeah, OK.

    I was seduced by the amazing looking Kenrick sound restorations, but that's BIG money, almost as big as BIG D. Sucked in by the wood veneer and blue front, I scored a set of JBL 4307 "Studio Monitor", and after revisiting a thread @GoodEnoughGear posted that an updated 4312G was debuting last year, and that piqued my interest in the 4312, as the 4312SE that was released in limited #'s was difficult to find. I ended up getting a set of the 4312G "Control monitor" on sale from Music Direct with a 60 day return policy, the only caveat was that if I wanted to return them they had to be sent back exactly the way they came... On a pallet, with both speaker boxes inside of a larger box, OMFG that is some serious weight to deal with, but manageable if I didn't like them.

    Out of the box the 4312G sounded like shit, I'm not joking, boxy, muted mid range, and a foul top end. The manual stated that they needed to be "broke in" and there was always the mid and high controls on the front. I used them for watching TV and movies, and finally after a week they started to open up, and sounding like something.

    The best orientation in my place is horizontal with tweeters and mid range on the inside.
    IMG_2873.jpg

    IMG_2872.jpg
    JBL 4312G.jpg


    The 4307 look sexy as fuck, and make the 4312G look like cinder blocks, they are drool worthy pieces for sure. I got them for a pretty good deal compared to the new price, and they arrived in their original boxes looking absolutely mint.
    IMG_2870.jpg

    OOOOOH GAAAAWD.....
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    JBL 4307.jpg

    All measurements for both speakers had the mid and high set at JBL's neutral setting as stated in the manual, don't refer to the 4307 close up.

    I used the Crown CDi1000 for the most part directly from my Sony DVP-S9000ES, Modi 3 for TV duty, and of course my vinyl rig. I threw in the Pioneer M-22 and it really brought the mid range magic out, but lacked the grip and control in the bottom end with both JBL's, and I want them to be the fun, slamming set of speakers.

    The mid and high control on both sets of speakers is awesome, and makes tailoring the sound from song to song, album to album, or source to source, super easy, and it was one of my major draws to the JBL line up.

    At the end of the day I don't have room for 3 sets of speakers, or that's what I'm telling myself right now anyway. The 4307 are more even keeled and linear, while the 4312G are more exciting and dynamic. So far the ugly duckling 4312G are in the lead and will most likely be staying with me. I'll probably make a decision in the next week or so and post a for sale ad here.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020
  2. e.schell

    e.schell Friend

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    Don't suppose you have access through local friends / sbaf to vidars / aegirs? Been wondering for awhile about these newer JBL's pairing with primarily aegir single and monoblock for both synergy and if they have enough power to make these jbl's sing like they should.
     
  3. The Zone

    The Zone Rando

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    I haven't heard the 4312G's, but I own the JBL L100 Classics, which I bet sound pretty similar, with a premium demanded for the wood finish, foam grills, nostalgia factor, etc., all BS I'm apparently not immune to. Anyway, I tried both Vidar and Aegir with it. Both were acceptable, with the Vidar giving them greater weight down the low but causing them to sound a bit too strident for my taste, whereas the Aegir was much smoother with better detail retrieval but a little lean. In a different context, I might have stuck with the Aegir, but I use these speakers in my main system for movies, parties, loud listening, mostly rock and pop music, all situations where I want more punch and some of the subtleties are lost. I ended up with one of the new Yamaha integrated amps which I felt gave me something close to the best of both worlds, but I do still wonder if Ragnarok 2 or two Aegirs might be as good or better than what I have. (FWIW, I really like Vidar with other speakers and I ended up keeping it for my office setup).
     
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  4. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    4307 is currently available still? Along with 4312G and the new L100, JBLs product line does seem confusing. That's three 3-way models with 12" woofer near the same price.

    I wonder of the driver differences.
     
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  5. murphythecat

    murphythecat Self Imposed Exile

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    the 4307 use a 10 inch woofer.

    but i agree, JBL's line of speakers is confusing and seems to be random and poorly organised
     
  6. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Ahh. Now makes sense why @JK47 thought they were more lively.
     
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  7. exocer

    exocer Rando

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    @JK47 - Hey there, have you made your decision yet?
     
  8. Riotvan

    Riotvan Got lost for three weeks at Delft City Hall

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    Yeah man either shit or get off the pot...
     
  9. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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  10. Psalmanazar

    Psalmanazar Most improved member; A+

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    JBL's product line is getting even worse due to Samsung. The other Harman brands are even messier like DBX and Crown. Harman had good sizes and crap sizes within the same line (305 good and 308 wtf midrange happened across the entire JBL brand). Support has nosedived post Samsung I've heard.
     
  11. Rayzilla

    Rayzilla Rando

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    There are so many different versions fo the 4312. Does anyone here have a good understanding of the various models?
     

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