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Review of Jamo 606 and 718

Rega

venkatcr

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IMPORTANT NOTE
I had posted a review of Jamo speakers on 18th September, 2008 under the following thread

http://www.hifivision.com/speakers/1952-floorstanders-marantz-amp-3.html

I am posting a copy here so that the data is easily accessible. I should have posted the review here in the first place. This is a not a new review but just a re-posting of the 18th Sep review.
END NOTE

There are at least two threads running that ask about views on Jamo / Wharfedale and other speakers. I did not see any serious review, and TheVortex had sent me a special request. So I took off this afternoon to Cinebels to listen to the Jamo 606 and 718.

Here are my comments. I must warn that these comments are extremely subjective, though I have tired to keep them as objective as possible. Unfortunately all audition, that are not supported by extensive technical analysis, are subjective. This is the first time, I am undertaking such a review in this Forum. In addition the listening environment was not perfect. I had to listen to the speakers in a shop where they were lined alongside a number of other speakers. In addition, the listening room was right next to a road that had very high traffic.

1. The Jamo S606.

These are narrow speakers that are about 3.5 feet tall. They have two 5 inch mid range drivers, one 1 inch tweeter, and an 8 inch woofer. The woofer is side firing. The mid range and tweeter are shiny black that made them look very fragile. The 606 has a frequency range of 45Hz to 20Khz, and can handle 130-210 watts with a sensitivity of 89dB. The impedance is 6 Ohms.

This wattage specification sounded strange to me. Are these speakers hard to drive? You will see below.

2. The Jamo S718.

These speakers are broader than the 606, and have a silvery front, and shiny side panels. They have two 6.5 inches midrnage drivers, and one 1 inch tweeter in the front. They have a 10 inch sub woofer in the side. The speakers have a sensitivity of 92 dB, an impedance of 6 ohms, and a frequency range of 40Hz to 20Khz. Again, like the 606, the wattage specification is 200 to 300 watts.

The source used was a Marantz 5001 CDP, and the amplifier was a Marantz 7001 Integrated Amplifier pumping out 70 watts per channel.

The Audition

At the outset, I must thank Mr. B. Prasad, Customer Support Engineer at Cinebels. He was very patient with me and played each CD and track that I chose twice - once for the 606 and again for the 718. At the end he did not even push me for a sale, and just requested for my name and address. The only issue we did not agree upon was which speaker was better.

A. Shambho Maha Deva - OS Arun. Recorded by Charsur Digital Studio. Released by Tmes Music.

I started with OS Arun, as I know his voice very well. In addition, the track 'Pratah Smaram' is very simple with OS Arun singing, a Tambura in the back, and a Mridungam at the end. Since I know Arun's voice very intimately, I felt neither the 606 nor the 718 could deliver his voice with a natural transparency. The 718 had more clarity than the 606, but lacked the transparency that I was looking for. I must say both speakers rendered Arun's numbers well at low volumes.

B. Drums on Fire. James Asher and Sivamani, Times Music.

To have an immediate contrast to the soft number of Arun, I played the track 'Raindance' from Drums on Fire. This is a lively number that catches tempo very quickly into a Red Indian tune. It starts with a heavy drumming by Sivamani, followed by a male voice humming the tune. The heavy base that I was expecting was completely absent from both speakers. This was surprising in the 718 as it had 10 inch woofer. The 606 sounded very weak. .

C. Breathless. Music by Javed Akthar and Shankar Mahadevan. HMV.

The 606 started well with the first track 'Breathless'. The track starts with the gentle strings of a guitar followed by Shankar starting his non-stop singing. After about 10 seconds, the violins add to the sound stage, followed by electronic percussion. The percussion always gets me tapping my feet.

The 606 failed to present the percussion well, and got completely muddled as the electronic accompaniments piped in. The 718 had much more clarity in the beginning, and presented the percussion very well. Somewhere in between, the accompaniments step back a little. When Shankar starts singing, 'kaisi meeti bathein thi woh kaisi mulakhathen thi' the accompanients catch on in full gusto. This is where the 718 surprised me. I just could not hear Shankar's voice or hear his words clearly.

D, Fusion Mosaic - Vol 1. L Subramaniam, Shankar Mahadevan, Sivamani, Rahul Sharma, Bikram Ghosh. Rhythm House.

The first track - Tandav - start with the very gentle sound of a small triangle idiophone. This starts on the right speaker, and slowly moves to the background as the drums and tablas start the rhythm. When the flute starts, the triangle idiophone moves to the left speaker. With proper sound staging you can hear the triangle floating in the air some 6 to 8 feet above your left year.

The 606 again could not present either the drums or the tablas well. I could not hear the transition of the triangle as they moved across the stage.

The 718, again, had much more clarity and I could hear the triangle floating in the air. But, I would have been happy with a little more base.

E. 2002 New Year's Concert. Weiner Philharmoniker conducted by Seiji Ozawa. Philips.

The last track - Radetzky-Marsch by Johann Strauss is a beautiful number that has strains of a military band. I don't know how many have seen this particular album (it is available as a DVD). Seiji actually invites the audience to clap along with the orchestral drums. The sound of some 5000 pair of hands clapping together is quite overwhelming. In between when the violins take on, the audience goes completely quite. The swift change from the sounds of the violins to the thunderous clapping and drums need a very capable combination of CDP, amplifier and, speakers.

Both the 606 and the 718 failed completely with orchestral music. Neither of them could deliver the sound stage of the auditorium in which the concert was recorded. When the volume was raised substantially, the sound started becoming distorted and jarring. But the sound stage was completely absent.

Conclusion

Maybe the combination of CDP, Amp, and speakers were wrong, But I doubt it. One issue was that the speakers were kept next to each other in addition to a number of other speakers. It is possible, the speakers did not have enough space for the woofers to play well.

I felt that both the 718 and 606 were good at playing modern electronic music. The mids and high were rendered well. But the minute we had some percussion being played, the speakers came out weak and muddled. As the number of instruments increased, the speakers became less clear.

Between the two the 718 was far ahead of the 606 in terms of clarity and ability to render each note, voice, and instrument independently.

Cheers
 

mahiruha

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Hello,
I have been using Jamo s606 for past one year. I bought it basically to set up my home theater. Then I started to use it also for listening to music. To be honest it fills my big room very well. I quite enjoy the music produced by it. I must admit when I started to listen to vinyls I found that quality of music produced by them has imrpoved a lot. I don't know what are the things that I am missing. May be I will find out after listening to Lyrita system.
Thanks.
Mahiruha.
 

RSRAMESH

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Hello,
I have been using Jamo s606 for past one year. I bought it basically to set up my home theater. Then I started to use it also for listening to music. To be honest it fills my big room very well. I quite enjoy the music produced by it. I must admit when I started to listen to vinyls I found that quality of music produced by them has imrpoved a lot. I don't know what are the things that I am missing. May be I will find out after listening to Lyrita system.
Thanks.
Mahiruha.

I do have a similar setup Onky 606 & Jamo 606, i invited Mr.Venkat for auditioning my setup, infact Venkat Sir was really impressed with the sound output from Jama 606, no serious negative comments from him, i do like the sound quality, unfortunate i have not auditioned the Wharfies & MS's the favourites for most among the forum members.

Thanks
Ramesh S
 

theVatansever

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I sincerely signed up in this forum to thank you,,, I am about to purchase one of these two speakers, where i live s708 is 50$ cheaper than s606...but its not the case,, i just need better sound i like...i like ATB, Armin Van Buuren, Dj Tiesto and other techno-pop sounds...not like most of you...I never listen classical music...I like high treble and mid sounds, and nice bass filling entire room and beating in my chest...My setup includes Technis SE 800MarkII Pre-Power amplifier and Technis SH-GE70 eq and also Technics Cd player....I really like high and clear trebles,,, thats why i use eQ...so in this aspects, which of these speakers you should recommend to me....
 

cha_indian

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I have Jamo S708 speakers and i think they are good. One good thing with the speakers are they are neutral and also they are efficient. 40W amp would be too much for a small apartment.
 

theVatansever

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Here are the drivers all basic Jamo speakers use (you'll probably recognise some of the faceplates, I can see the tweeter of the 606), note the fact that they are cheaper than even drivers made in India. I replaced a pair of blown Jamo drivers with those made by Peerless, and the latter sounded much cleaner and more precise than the originals.

Parts Express

Since they are factory buyouts, the stocks won't last so depending on when you click the link, there may be no results.
awesome man,,,, thnks for this great post....i'm ordering 4 tweeters right now, hope they ship international...
 

sbg

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My taste in music seems to be similar theVatansever.
I am no audiophile but i know what i like.
For me deciding on speakers and amps was a very slow process - it took 3 years to commit . During this period i did have lots of demos/auditions - polk(RTi,LSi), focal(chorus - bookshelfs ),jamo(s408 HCs1,s406 HCs1),kef (iQ series). And i have to admit i settled for a A7s+denon based on what i felt was good for my listening pleasure, though i know there is something better setup avlb that i had auditioned.
venkatcr seems to be so articulate in puting the details that you feel you could corelate to what you had experienced. At time i wonder why these speakers/systems are not so articulte in what they are supposed to do.
I do have disc in B, C's part of venkatcr review with me, so this helps me in knowing what he means( may be his ears are more sensistive to that of mine:) if i could not make out what he says).
But finally it seems like we chose what we like based on an environment.
so first thing first - i would suggest - always carry your References CD/DVDs with you like a shool bag ( umm more like a luch box) for all the auditions and keep it consistent.
Hope venkatcr keeps the same references in all the reviews. Reasons for this is that we normally tend to compare one speaker to the other and not appreciate a pair of speaker on its own - you see "There is something out there better for that Price Range".

Good hunting and looking for more reviews.
 
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svenkateshsmart

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venkatcr seems to be so articulate in puting the details that you feel you could correlate to what you had experienced.

+1 to the above post. Very true and we had seen that in person in the first HFV Chennai meet.

Cheers!
 

venkatcr

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Here are the drivers all basic Jamo speakers use (you'll probably recognise some of the faceplates, I can see the tweeter of the 606),

Wow Cranky, where did you dig this info from? This is news to me.

Hope venkatcr keeps the same references in all the reviews. Reasons for this is that we normally tend to compare one speaker to the other and not appreciate a pair of speaker on its own - you see "There is something out there better for that Price Range".

Good hunting and looking for more reviews.

I am not a great audiophile or anything, but I do focus when I listen to music. When I like a song, I listen to it many times and come to understand the nuances of the song. One of the easiest way to becoming familiar with a song is to listen to it on a pair of headphones. Even at low volumes, simply because the drivers are very near you ears, you hear a lot of stuff that you might miss otherwise.

Any audition is always a comparison. When you listen to speakers for the first time with a song you are familiar with, and the song sounds nice to your ears, you are automatically comparing it to some speakers on which you have heard it before. Hey! I never heard that twang before, that bell is new, that guitar seems more centered, I can hear the lead singer drawing breath, there is no echo.... all these are impressions that you create in your mind.

Unfortunately speaker auditioning is very subjective. A technical analysis can say things about a speaker - its frequency range, sensitivity, power capacity... - but whether it sound nice or not is purely what your ears tell you.

I also feel the environment you listen in also makes a huge difference. A well designed room, low or zero external noise, and low disturbance makes a difference. Unless the room is acoustically perfect, the times I like best for conducting an audition is late into the night - somewhere between midnight and say, 0400 hours.

Cheers
 
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theVatansever

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SOOOO what do you guys recommend for tecno music? s606 or s708??? i need high trebles, mids and bas...i need everything:yahoo:
 

theVatansever

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Actually they've been on PE quite a while now. I remember the range was much bigger in August.

On the downside the drivers are really cheap so one feels a little cheated when one sees the price service guys charge in India (I was quoted Rs 5000/- for that $9 woofer, guess where I told them to install it. With screws. Long ones.) and the price the finished stuff actually costs.

On the upside, they make their own drivers even in this day and age, so...
frankly i started to feel being rubbed by Jamo after i saw that link....so what do you recommend for high treble sounding musics????
 

sbg

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I do empahize with you (venkatcr) .

My primary listening is still in in-canal earphones (not headphones) as i felt these method was good in moving an air column (earphones'diaphram to eardrum) in your ear-canal to give you the best transperancy. I did not have much of testing with various earphones/headphones but from what all i had, SE310 seems the best (among sony(xd300/...), sennheiser(some cx series),creative(stock) ) - not much of bass,but good overall punch.
Source is pc based (2)- Cd/mp3 - X-Fi fatality pro and X-Fi Titanium -
when not using SE310 - it is optical out(titanium only) to Denon2310->polk A7s+DSWpro500 - normally for Movies - SPL seems heavy.

SOOOO what do you guys recommend for tecno music? s606 or s708??? i need high trebles, mids and bas...i need everything:yahoo:
The reason i gave a brief setup that i have is that, using PC , you do have a good(may be substantial) reason to control different frequencies( in my case X-Fi's - audio creation mode).
Again - xonar essence stx could be a better choice. But for me only RCA out was a BIG trun off.
Next comes the Delivery - speakers capable of delivering the needed frequency without clipping or distortion.
I too wanted everyting - but in the long i realised being moderate/balanced is less stressfull to well-being ( this is my pernl opnion as i normally put up 2-4 hrs in listening music.)
 

NMyTree

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I have not heard the Jamo S606 and 718.

But having spoken with a few S606 owners and having read several descriptions of what people have experienced with the S606. I have a difficult time taking venkatcr's review, as a definitive description of the S606.

With all due respect to venkatcr. The conditions, positioning of the speakers and the fact other speakers were in the room and right next to the S606; defeats any possiblities of the S606 being demonstrated to their fullest potential. Or the potential of any speaker, not just Jamo speakers.

In that type of setup, you truely do not get the full experience of the S606 (or any speaker) performing to the best of their abilities.

Way too much stuff in the room and the positioning of the speakers was not executed correctly. Remember, the S606 have the 8 inch side firing woofers and anything cluttering the drivers ability to breathe or fire freely; defeats them.

The Marantz PM7001 Integrated amp is just okay. I wouldn't use it to drive the S606 speakers, though.

It is very common for PM 7001 and less quality preamps/amps and integrated amps like it, to easily compress and distort when there is a lot of activity in the music...or should I say, when there are many active instruments/vocals playing at the same time. So it's difficult to determine the problem as being the S606.

Especially since other people have told me the S606 do not have this problem.

The one thing I can say is this. I have several C60 and C80 Jamo speaker models. And even the Jamo C603 bookshelf has wonderful poise and control with very active music. I love that about all my Jamo speakers. They just simply don't break a sweat when there's a lot of musical information all at the same time. The C603 are incredible at it, considering their modest price.

Had to be either the amp, or the setup or then room acoustics.

One of these days I will have to audition the S606. I hear so many good things about it.
 
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theVatansever

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does anyone think wharfedale 10.7 is better than these two??? i'm about to buy an whrfdl 10.7 @400USD as display item, it looks nice to me...
 

venkatcr

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does anyone think wharfedale 10.7 is better than these two??? i'm about to buy an whrfdl 10.7 @400USD as display item, it looks nice to me...

As I have mentioned many times before, speakers are a very personal choice. The auditions/reviews that you read here and in magazines are only pointers to where you should go. But, at the end always let your ears decide.

A lot of us (including me:)) like the Wharfedales. There are others who do not like it at all. So please do audition it before buying it.

Cheers
 

cha_indian

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SOOOO what do you guys recommend for tecno music? s606 or s708??? i need high trebles, mids and bas...i need everything:yahoo:

S606 sounded a little hazy to me... a bit like British sound. To me, it does not sound good with high frequency sounds. I think you must buy S708 and also a equalizer. Equalizer would be great if you want a particular freq to dominate.

I would also like you to audition Bose Acoustimass speakers.....They sounded very 'electronic' and 'airy' to me !!
 

cha_indian

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Actually they've been on PE quite a while now. I remember the range was much bigger in August.

On the downside the drivers are really cheap so one feels a little cheated when one sees the price service guys charge in India (I was quoted Rs 5000/- for that $9 woofer, guess where I told them to install it. With screws. Long ones.) and the price the finished stuff actually costs.

On the upside, they make their own drivers even in this day and age, so...

You are worth your weight in Gold :clapping:
 
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