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Heritage Jubilee in a Small Room – Three Months in


MMurg
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After living with the Heritage Jubilee in my smallish (13’ x 17’) living room for about three months now, I have a few insights and tips that have improved my enjoyment that I’d like to share.  Apologies for the length but I wanted to include as much detail as possible in the hope that this is helpful for anyone who has purchased them or may be considering a purchase.  I also apologize if some of this may be old news to some, such as Underground Jubilee owners, but it was new to me.

 

The first major insight has to do with positioning the Jubilee.  About a month after getting the Jubilee someone on the Klipsch Forum asked me how I was liking them.  My only complaint at the time was that I couldn’t listen to a lot of the not-so-great recordings on this system.  I was unable to EQ them to sound decent the same way that I did on my other systems.  So, I decided to use my UMIK-1 microphone with the REW software to see if I could figure out the bad recording mystery (which I had recently learned how to use during "the speaker project that must not be named" 🙂).  Thanks to Klipsch Forum member @Chris A for all the help with REW, interpreting the measurements, and help with the solutions during this effort too.

 

First, I made a few near field measurements at 1 meter on-axis horizontally to see the response in the mids and highs uninfluenced by the room (above the Schroeder frequency).  My first measurements were at the height of the dividing line between the LF and HF sections, about ear height.  I wasn’t sure where I should be measuring these speakers, and this seemed like a reasonable place to try.  However, the response was not flat at that that location.  It looked more like a bell curve.  There was a broad hill from about 4 kHz to about 11 kHz and a tail off above that.  So, I moved the measurement position to on-axis vertically as well with the K-402 horn.  Now the response above the Schroeder frequency was nice and flat.  This information turned out to be the key to what I was experiencing.

 

When I moved the mic to ear height at the main listening position (MLP) to see what was going on there, the response looked similar to the 1m ear height measurement.  Now I understood why the bad recordings sounded worse on this system.  My initial setup was to place the Jubilee snugly in the corners at 45° just like Roy had them in the Hope lab listening room at JubFest.  This gave me a smidge more separation than pointing them at the listening position as I usually do with speakers.  However, doing that in my small room put the K-402 horns too far off-axis horizontally at the MLP.  Also, the short distance to the MLP (a little over 9’) put them off-axis vertically as well.  That was causing the upper mid and lower high frequency emphasis that was making the bad recordings sound even more shrill.  So, I turned the speakers to put the K-402 on-axis horizontally with the MLP.  I then tilted the horns down to put the K-402 on-axis vertically with my ear height the MLP.

 

At this point I must mention what seems to be design issue with the Heritage Jubilee top-hat (HF section) that may not allow the horn to be tilted in the way that I was told was intended and what can be done about it.  I’ve included pictures where you can see what I’m about to describe.  The mounting bracket at the horn throat/driver is fully adjustable and is not the problem.  The issue is with how the front baffle and base board are attached together with two L-brackets.  I believe Roy mentioned a JubFest that these brackets are supposed to be bendable to allow the horn to be pointed down.  However, because the front baffle is butted up against the front of base board and the L-brackets only have circular holes for the screws, any attempt to turn the front baffle down may be prevented as the bend in the L-bracket cannot move forward with the front baffle.  I believe that the screw hole in the L-bracket at the base needs to be a slot so that the screw can be loosened allowing the L-bracket bend to move with the front baffle.

 

***** Update – @Chief bonehead replied to my Facebook post about this saying he had no problem pointing the horn down as is. So, I guess I was in error with my assessment of the L-bracket situation. However, I think I still prefer my method of tilting the horn described below as it doesn’t involve messing with the factory adjustment of the horn/driver bracket or deforming the L-brackets. *****

 

So instead of trying to tilt the horn down that way, I simply placed a spacer board under the rear of the top-hat base board on top of the bass bin.  I determined the angle of tilt that I needed by placing my tripod-mounted UMIK-1 at the MLP at ear height, pointing it at the throat of the K-402, and measuring the angle from level.  This was about 6°.  So, I experimented with various spacer board heights until I got close to this angle.  I ended up using a 2.5” x 2.5” x 18” long poplar square dowel wrapped at the contact edges with some three-layer Duralux shelf liner to prevent the edges from digging into the MDF.  This was placed under the rear of the top-hat just behind the two rubber pucks that support the top-hat when it’s level.  This got me to within 1/2° of my desired angle.  You can’t really use a bigger spacer than this as the two front veneer panels are very close together, a little over 1/16” on one speaker, using a 2.5” high spacer.  Any attempt to go to a steeper angle would require lifting the front of the top-hat as well.  This might lift it off the three rubber support pucks at the front edge and cause it to slide forward.  I can’t imagine needing a steeper tilt than this unless you had an even smaller distance from the speakers, which is unlikely.  If you want to try this method of tilting the horn, I recommend that you temporarily put some cushioning material between the two front veneer panels before starting so that you don’t accidentally crash the veneer panels together.  I used two pieces of Duralux for that.  I’m glad I came up with this method of tilting the horn since it is so easily changed or undone.  I wasn’t too keen on loosening the bracket holding up the heavy Celestion driver or bending the L-brackets.

 

Once I had the K-402 on-axis in both directions at the MLP, the response there above the Schroeder frequency was now fairly flat.  I put on a few of the not-so-great recordings.  They now sounded like they do on my Palladium systems and are correctable with a similar amount of EQ. This also corrected an intermittent imaging issue I experienced.  On some recordings, the instruments or vocals at the speaker positions would sometimes be higher than ones in the center, appearing to be at the horn throat height instead of level with the rest.  Now, everything is always level and solid with the acoustic center always at ear height.  So, my conclusion from this is get the main listening position on-axis with the K-402 horns in both directions for best results.  My front wall may look even more like a wall of speakers now, but the improvement is worth it.

 

The second major insight has to do with bass room gain.  It might be expected that putting a speaker like the Heritage Jubilee in a small room corner might lead to some pretty large room gain.  I could hear such a gain when I was close to the corners.  However, I thought I was spared this at the MLP since I didn’t hear that when listening there.  Well, it turns out that I just hadn’t put on the right program material yet.  One day, I decided to listen to some tracks from the Lord of the Rings soundtrack.  The deep organ bass on this was so overblown that I couldn’t continue listening.  The measurements I made for the positioning issue showed my why.  While there was some room gain in the mid-bass at the MLP, most of that gain was below 30 Hz, peaking in the mid 20’s.  Only the sustained low bass the LOTR soundtrack made this obvious at the listening position.  Luckily, the processor that I am using in the Jubilee system, the Emotiva XMC-1, has two equalization presets that allow up to 11 PEQs to be defined per speaker per preset.  REW was used to determine two PEQs per channel that were enough to tame this at the MLP in my room.  This very low bass room gain was quite large.  The largest peak required more than a 10 dB cut to correct.  So, if you are going to have Heritage Jubilee in a smaller room, you will need some way to do bass room correction.  It’s unfortunately that Klipsch does not allow the end user to adjust the DSP in any way (apart from the gain knobs that allow different amplifiers to be used with the LF and HF which wouldn’t help with this).  This would be a good way to do such correction.

 

Now that I have the speaker position and room dialed in, the Jubilee sound better than ever.  The response at the MLP goes out to 20 kHz close to spec and the -3 dB point for the bass is about 16 Hz.  I even get useable response (-10 dB) down to about 10 - 12 Hz (depending on which channel is measured since the room isn't quite symmetrical).  These speakers have not been over hyped.  They are the real deal.  Last week I went to a concert at Lehigh University featuring the Lehigh University Orchestra and Choir.  (My son sings bass in the Choir.)  It was another opportunity to hear what a live, unamplified orchestra and chorus sounds like.  I have to say that of all the speakers I’ve owned over the years, only the Jubilee seems to successfully reproduce the detail, dynamics, and sheer power of a live orchestra and chorus.  One other thing the Jubilee do best is producing the “performer in the room” tangibility, that feeling that you could reach out and touch the performer.  A few days ago, I purchased a used CD at a thrift shot of the Persuasions, a “doo-***” a cappella group, doing covers of U2 songs.  While it’s not something I would normally buy, I was mainly interested in the recording as demo/test material.  It was done by the audiophile label Chesky Records and was recorded direct to digital (no overdubs or remixing) in a Manhattan church.  The imaging of the semicircle of the singers with this recording is amazingly precise and realistic.  The “reach out and touch” feeling is astounding, as is everything else with these speakers.  After three months of owning the Jubilee, I have no regrets.

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The Belle looks so cute in there.. Wow.. Talk about dwarfed!!!!!

 

There is some content that can't sound good because it isn't good. I don't think you can fix it with EQ. I have learned to live with it. These things are true to your source material like nothing else. A good problem to have me thinks. Congrats again. Just an amazing setup.

 

 

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1 hour ago, seti said:

The Belle looks so cute in there.. Wow.. Talk about dwarfed!!!!!

 

There is some content that can't sound good because it isn't good. I don't think you can fix it with EQ. I have learned to live with it. These things are true to your source material like nothing else. A good problem to have me thinks. Congrats again. Just an amazing setup.

 

 

 

While it's true that some recordings are not correctable with EQ (over compressed, distorted, completely missing bass, etc.), there are many that can be made much more listenable with some EQ (usually some bass boost, a mid-treble shelf down, or both).  On my Palladium setups, the same recordings are corrected by the same EQ settings.  The Jubilee system was the odd man out until I got the K-402 horns on-axis in both directions with the listening position.  Now, it behaves the same as the Palladium systems in this regard.

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Thank-you for posting what you did and --- especially --- how you did it.

 

I'll try using your measurement and placement techniques. I've never been entirely satisfied with how my La Scalas are "dialled in". Perhaps your experience will be of help.

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2 hours ago, Dave MacKay said:

Thank-you for posting what you did and --- especially --- how you did it.

 

I'll try using your measurement and placement techniques. I've never been entirely satisfied with how my La Scalas are "dialled in". Perhaps your experience will be of help.

 

I will be doing the same.  I have La Scala AL5 as the surrounds in this setup in the corners behind the couch.  In that position, they are a little too low.  The horns are not ear height and since they are even closer to the listening position than the Jubilee, the horns are not on-axis vertically with my ears.  So, I purchased two platforms to raise them up about six inches.  They came the other day.  I just need my son to get a break from classes at college to help me move the speakers.

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the platforms look great and they should work well but I had a pair years ago and I had use

2”. 1/2 granite under each of them with pads stabilizers  for a Washer. Nothing fell but I knew I was in a concert lol 

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I had the same issue with risky forward tilt on my 402 setups.  I removed the front brackets (that don't bend) and installed door hinges from Home Depot.  Look and work just fine.  Can tilt safely forward/backward without fear of breaking the horn plastic.

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15 hours ago, OO1 said:

 and Very well built .

 

Those platforms really do look fine.  However (you’re probably thinking, “Here we go!” at this point), depending on the feet that come with the AL5s, you might need to add something.  I don’t know which feet they come with, the traditional steel “button” feet, or rubber feet.  With rubber feet, you should be fine, but with the steel buttons, the speakers might creep around it you play them at fairly high volume for a while.  On the other hand, they’re heavy enough to press the steel button feet into the wood, so the resulting dimples in the wood of the bases should keep the speakers located where they belong.

 

I was surprised to see the L-brackets.  I may be wrong, but I had the impression that the HF stands on the UG Jubilees had hinges at the front, so that they could easily be tilted to whichever angle the particular installation called for.  However, it could be that 99% of the buyers of Heritage Jubilees will never do much tweaking of them, especially not to the level of precision that you’re working with, so the simple strap/L-bracket makes good acoustic and economic sense in almost every instance.  The used K402s that I bought came with homemade stands made of plywood.  During installation, I checked and found that a 7 degree forward tilt would line up the horns with my ear level at the MLP.  Each homemade stand consisted of an upright post, secured to a small base, around 4”x4”, with no front parts.  I got some 2’x2’x2” Styrofoam, which would be covered in black once the last cut was made.  Once I noticed that the Right 402 horn would not clear the adjacent cabinet by 1-1/2”, the simple solution was to add a second slab of 2” thick Styrofoam, and the Left speaker got it, too, for the sake of symmetry.  The stands/bases were rigid enough for the job, while still being light and easy to move.

 

For the fronts of the 402 stands, I used what I call steel strapping.  It looks similar to the Klipsch L-brackets, but is a bit narrower and has 3/8” holes along its length, roughly every inch or so.  It’s typically used for making lightweight brackets.  Since I already knew the angle of bend that was needed, it was easy to bend each bracket to precisely 7 degrees, after cutting them to the correct length.  When everything was assembled, it looked pretty good, with the bases covered in black material.  The bases are light but rigid.

 

In the case of your Jubilees, I can see how you’d hesitate to bend the Klipsch L-brackets, but the material I referred to is readily available at most hardware or automotive supply shops.  You could get some of that, cut it to whatever length you need, and then bend it it to whatever angle you need.  You could even make up some extras in various bends, say 5, 6, and 7 degrees, for dialling in the angle if something else changes.  The strapping is often galvanized, but you might prefer to paint it black, flat or glossy finish, or the stock battleship grey.

 

You weren’t kidding about the minimal clearance at the fronts of the HF sections.  However (last time I’ll use that word), with the care that you’re taking, you should be okay.  Move carefully, assume nothing.  Even so, sometimes it’s good to remember (in the case of speakers, motorbikes, cars, boats, and so on) that they’re only new the first day.  As I wished for you before, happy listening, and keep us up to date!

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Thanks for the detailed write-up, explained very well and clearly. I will remember this if I decide to pull the trigger on a set of HJubes. My room is 20 x 20 so I don't know if I would have the off-axis issues you describe. However, I would engineer and fabricate a new front support system that would work with the rear driver moveable support to allow easy tilting of the horn and clearance of the front edge veneered sections. Per your pictures, I think I could use the factory mounting holes so no new ones would need to be drilled (I hate permanently changing something like these). I would also post the plans for any HJube owners to do the same.

 

I did a similar concept for a design/build to allow two horns per cabinet to be tilted independently on a modified Altec VOTT project. Haven't mounted them yet but it does work as designed.

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2 hours ago, babadono said:

3 months with the new Jubes....just think in another year or two you'll have had them as long as you waited to get them:)

 

Here's the thing about waiting for stuff like this (of which I have waited quite a while for some stuff):

 

Once you get it and it meets/exceeds expectations you quit thinking about how long it took to get it, aside from knowing that it was worth it.

 

I effectively toasted a home theater two months into COVID and it took until just recently to finally install and use the finished product but it was completely worth it.

 

Usually stuff that comes easy oft isn't really worth it where the really GOOD stuff takes time to get and is worth the effort to procure.

 

I have a 5.1 theater system with rebuilt Cornwalls and a twin pair of JBL twin 15" LFE cabs in a slightly larger room, and I thought I was running a nuke as a flyswatter, but this is   on another level entirely. I set my rear Cornwalls on short end tables to achieve a similar end for the rears with effective results.

 

Fantastic system. Truly "Big Time". Thanks for showing that....

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I have the exact opposite reaction to 'waiting' as it rarely measures up to the anticipation... Like sex for instance.

 

I find that after waiting for something for a LONG time, that the chase was more rewarding than the payoff.

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"The response at the MLP goes out to 20 kHz close to spec and the -3 dB point for the bass is about 16 Hz.  I even get useable response (-10 dB) down to about 10 - 12 Hz (depending on which channel is measured since the room isn't quite symmetrical)."


😲

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On 11/1/2022 at 1:05 PM, mark1101 said:

I had the same issue with risky forward tilt on my 402 setups.  I removed the front brackets (that don't bend) and installed door hinges from Home Depot.  Look and work just fine.  Can tilt safely forward/backward without fear of breaking the horn plastic.

That's right and a cheap easy fix. This is the way a set of 942/4's is set up in my shop right now.

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I've been reading your posts, this one, and the previous ones, with great interest and a great bit of jealosy as well, I must admit. And I have hesitated about reacting to it, because these days, any 'negative' reaction online is seldom tolerated, even if it is an honest one.

Here's the thing: in my opinion, Klipsch Heritage speakers come in different sizes, proportional to the size of the room they are put in. Each model has its 'sweet spot' size of room. Put a pair of Heresy speakers in a large hall, and they won't sound right. Put La Scala speakers in the average teen's bedroom, and they won't sound right. 

If you put Heritage Jubelee speakers in a room that is too small, they won't sound right. They are truly mammoth in size, and according to the user manual (yes, I read it) they should be between 12 and 15 feet apart, and the MLP (main listening position) should be equally 12 to 15 feet distant, forming a triangle. My instinct also tells me there should be reasonable 'breathing space' behind the back of the MLP too, though this is not mentioned in the user manual. In other words, you need a really big room to do justice to these really big speakers.

It is quite obvious you are aware of the fact that your listening room is small-ish for these speakers, and your observations and tweaks are certainly worthwhile, but often it reads like this analogy: you bought a marvelous muscle car, and you ride it on you driveway, while you should be taking it out to a race circuit and enjoy its full potential!

I am aware you are not the only one putting these speakers in a small room:

An Unofficial Klipsch Jubilee Buyer's Guide - Klipsch Pro Audio - The  Klipsch Audio Community

 

Compare the above with a still image from one of Klipsch's official youtube videos:

image.png.4b1cbbe9e7250107563492edb4a5ea7d.png

 

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1 hour ago, MeloManiac said:

Here's the thing: in my opinion, Klipsch Heritage speakers come in different sizes, proportional to the size of the room they are put in. Each model has its 'sweet spot' size of room. Put a pair of Heresy speakers in a large hall, and they won't sound right. Put La Scala speakers in the average teen's bedroom, and they won't sound right. 

 

I appreciate that you have an opinion but I can offer you real world experience since the picture you posted is of my “Underground Jubilee” in my first room which was about 12ft x 17ft and the only room I had available when I bought them and I had Klipschorns in the room previously as well as Heresy in this room. My experience was that the Heresy was clearly outperformed by the Klipschorn and the “Underground Jubilee” outperformed them both in this room.

 

I will say they all have the ability to perform even better (especially as it pertains to imaging and soundstage) in a larger room if the larger room has good acoustics.

 

When I bought the “Underground Jubilee” it was always my plan to eventually place them into a larger room but until I had that larger room I had the best performing Klipsch Loudspeaker which gave me the best sound this room would ever be capable of.

 

miketn🙂

 

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Picture taken when I first moved them to the current listening room.

 

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On 10/31/2022 at 1:11 PM, MMurg said:

The first major insight has to do with positioning the Jubilee

Excellent thoughts & commentary (and nice pictures to boot)

 

It's amazing how puny the Belle looks   lol, I just called the Belle puny.

 

So....  is it however true?  Horns are honky, right?!!

 

 

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