JBL NSP1II review: JBL NSP1II

CNET Editors' Rating

3 stars Good
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good Curvaceous styling; full-sized center speaker; swivel wall-mount hardware.

The Bad Brash treble; plasticlike feel.

The Bottom Line The NSP1II will appeal to home-theater fans rather than music-oriented listeners.

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Boxes are boring, so JBL's NSP1II speaker package nixes the clunky, old, square look for a curvaceous style. The appeal is more than skin deep: JBL's engineers applied a liberal dose of high-tech engineering to the Mark II update of the company's popular Northridge Series speakers. The NSP1II sounds detailed and lively, but it lacks refinement. Boxes are boring, so JBL's NSP1II speaker package nixes the clunky, old, square look for a curvaceous style. The appeal is more than skin deep: JBL's engineers applied a liberal dose of high-tech engineering to the Mark II update of the company's popular Northridge Series speakers. The NSP1II sounds detailed and lively, but it lacks refinement.

Tech talk
The NSP1II package consists of four Northridge Series N24II satellites and one N-CenterII center-channel speaker. JBL has fashioned the dark-gray speaker cabinets from an exotic plastic-composite material, but when we rapped our knuckles on one of the sats, it felt hollow and lightweight.

The N-CenterII speaker is a good deal larger than the N24IIs and feels even more resonant. Because of its size, it's destined to sit atop a TV. And thanks to its rear-mounted ports, it won't breathe freely if you stash it in a cabinet or put it under your set. The N24IIs' front-mounted ports permit greater placement flexibility. Swivel wall-mount hardware for the four sats is provided, and the speakers' binding posts are of good quality.

Both the center unit and the sats feature titanium-laminate, 0.75-inch dome tweeters that sit in computer-designed waveguides, which the company claims delivers balanced sound to on- and off-axis listeners. The woofers' polymer-coated, cellulose-fiber cones minimize internal resonances and lower distortion. The N-CenterII sports dual 5-inch woofers while the N24IIs utilize a single 4-inch woofer.

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Where to Buy

JBL NSP1II

Part Number: NSP1II
Pricing is currently unavailable.

Quick Specifications See All

  • Speaker System Type home theater speaker system
  • Speaker System Configuration 5.0-channel
  • Color black
  • Nominal Impedance 8 Ohm
  • Amplification Type passive
  • Crossover Channel Qty 2-way
  • Connectivity Technology wired