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JBL Control 2.4G Wireless Speakers Review

JBL Control 2.4G Wireless Speakers

JBL Control 2.4G Wireless Speakers


  • Product Name: Control 2.4G Wireless Speakers
  • Manufacturer: JBL
  • Review Date: September 07, 2010 03:55
  • MSRP: $229.00
  • First Impression: Pretty Cool
  • Buy Now
  • Finish: Black
  • Frequency Response: 50Hz - 20kHz
  • Low-Frequency Driver: 4" Magnetically shielded
  • High-Frequency Driver: 1/2" Titanium-laminate, magnetically shielded
  • Amplifier power: 15W/channel
  • Operating frequency: 2.4GHz
  • Operating range: up to 70 ft.
  • Dimensions (speakers): 9" H x 6-1/8" W x 5-1/2" D
  • Dimensions (transmitter): 1-1/8" H x 4-7/8" W x 3-7/8" D
  • Weight (active speaker): 4.6 lbs
  • Weight (passive speaker): 4.3 lbs
  • Weight (transmitter): 0.5 lbs

Executive Overview

JBL has long been associated with both pro audio as well as solid home theater systems. Now, they are breaking into new ground with their Control 2.4G Wireless Surround Speakers that guarantee anyone can enjoy surround sound - even without wires... or at least without speaker wires... or at least without speaker wires going to your surround speakers from the front of the room... OK, here's how this works...

Let's say you want real surround sound, but you absolutely can't run speaker wire from the front of your room to the surrounds in back. If you can afford the $229 cost of entry, JBL can offer you a couple of speakers, barely 9" tall that can be placed almost anywhere. BUT the left speaker (the one with the amplifier) needs to have access to a power outlet, and you need to run a pair of speaker cables from that speaker to the right-channel (or passive) speaker. You also need to wire an output from your A/V receiver or source to the analogue inputs of the transmitter. You still with me? OK, so the left speaker contains a 15W per channel stereo amplifier that powers both speakers and receives its signal from the included transmitter. There is also a line input in the event that you simply want to use these as desktop powered speakers and there is even a subwoofer output, an 1/8" mini jack. This output is full-range, so make sure the sub you connect it to has a variable low pass filter.

As you can guess from the name, the JBL Control 2.4G speakers use 2.4GHz technology to receive a signal from up to 70 feet away. The speakers are rated to play down to 50Hz and they are two-way, meaning they have a 1/2" titanium tweeter and a 4" mid-driver. Both are magnetically shielded, though that doesn't matter unless you have an older CRT-style television. If you do have one of those, pause this video and go look for one of our television reviews... It's a video - we'll wait.

Each speaker is tiny, measuring roughly 6" wide and deep and standing just 9" tall. They weigh less than 4.5 pounds each, making them extremely easy to place.  Wall mounts are included in the event you want to get them up and out of the way. The transmitter is miniscule as well, no larger than a small portable hard drive. This system was fairly reliable in our testing, and it even exceeded the 70 foot claimed range. We did find that it got a bit dicey at long ranges when we introduced more wireless networking devices in its path, but overall we were quite pleased.

JBL has some very cool speakers in the Control 2.4G's. You can place them just about anywhere and they seem perfect for those living in an apartment or where you simply can't get wires to the back of the room without a major renovation. They also sound very good - better than most wireless speakers we've heard - and that's likely due to the JBL Control One series name, upon which these were built. Wireless speakers for $229/pair that do what they claim and sound good to boot? That's not a bad deal. Not in the least.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

allargon posts on September 08, 2010 16:34
These things are on sale at Fry's for 30-50% off that list price pretty much every other month.
timmay8612 posts on September 08, 2010 15:06
I could easily have utilized these as-is in my previous rental. As some have said, surrounds were to the back/sides of my couch, with a power outlet close by. I just happened to already have conventional surrounds and didn't mind running wires under the rug. Such is life in a rental.

One thought is that with a single amplifier, you only have to run one power cord instead of two, so for certain applications this might work out better.
sholling posts on September 08, 2010 13:33
I'm sure the speakers have their place but I'd think it was as patio speakers. The review itself was excellent. I really like the format and it looked very professional.
Seth=L posts on September 08, 2010 12:35
JJMP50, post: 749152
I can see them as a solution for a set of mobile patio speakers (gotta bring them in after your done) but as surrounds at best they remind me of my very first set of surrounds…little KLH metal things. But I think I only paid about $30 for them.
The Control series is much better than the KLH version. KLH copies the appearance, not the sound.
JJMP50 posts on September 08, 2010 05:39
I can see them as a solution for a set of mobile patio speakers (gotta bring them in after your done) but as surrounds at best they remind me of my very first set of surrounds…little KLH metal things. But I think I only paid about $30 for them.
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Andrew Gash was the online personality for Audioholics' video reviews back in 2010. He's an accomplished video editor and scriptwriter and enjoys masochistic events such as entering 48 hour film festivals each year, for which his last several attempts have placed in various nominations and awards.

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