JBL has launched their MS-8 integration digital processor, a $799 system that, the company claims, can tune your factory-fit (or aftermarket) in-car audio setup to produce audio of the sort even the designers couldn't envisage. Designed to install in the trunk, with only the dash-mounted display on show, the JBL MS-8 uses a binaural microphone headset to automatically adjust frequency response, bass performance, dynamics, clarity, detail and stereo imaging.
Video demo after the cut
Up to eight channels can be independently managed, and there's a 31-band graphic equalizer, preamp controls for system volume, subwoofer volume, left/right balance, front/rear fader and bass/mid/treble tone controls, and overriding DSP equalization, time correction and Logic 7 processing, and the ability to store five presets that can even tailor the audio to a specific seat in the car. Alternatively users can create pseudo 5.1 or 7.1 channel surround sound from a stereo source.
In the box is an RF remote so you can flip between settings and tweak on the move, and it's all apparently relatively straightforward to install. $799 seems like a lot to pay for a set-it-and-forget-it system, so you'd have to be the kind of listener who likes to regularly tweak their audio, but it's also potentially a lot less than you might pay for a new head-unit, speakers and amps.
JBL® MS-8 Revolutionizes In-Car Sound Experience
New Integration Solution Engineers Superior Sonic Performance for Any System
June 15, 2010 09:03 AM Eastern Daylight Time
NORTHRIDGE, Calif.--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Harman International Industries, Incorporated (NYSE:HAR) today announced the launch the of the new JBL MS-8 integration digital processor. Unless you’re driving a classic, your car probably came from the factory with speakers, a CD player and an amplifier. If you want to make the car sound better, you have to go through a confusing, technically complicated process of choosing components from a wall of speakers, radios and amplifiers, and having the car taken apart to install the new gear.
“Literally, it is a box that encapsulates some of the most advanced technology in the world. And with it, people will never experience music in their car the same way again.”
But not anymore. JBL® engineers have found a groundbreaking way to achieve a luxurious in-car audio experience: the brand-new MS-8 sound integration solution.
For more information click here: http://press.jbl.com/ms-8
The heart of the MS-8 is a powerful digital signal processor that operates like a little computer. Intelligent custom programming within the processor maximizes frequency response, bass performance, dynamics, clarity, detail and stereo imaging – every important parameter of sonic greatness – from virtually any combination of factory-installed or aftermarket components. After an elegantly simple, step-by-step setup process that takes about 10 minutes, you’ll enjoy your favorite music like never before.
The MS-8 sends sound to the listener’s ears from all individual speakers within the car simultaneously, improving clarity and stereo imaging to a vast degree. The system includes a simple, menu-driven calibration based on detailed input from an included binaural microphone headset. It optimizes up to eight input channels, producing a full-bandwidth and flat-response signal. Its system integration processor features premier sound-optimization technology such as digital sound processing (DSP) equalization and DSP time correction – automatically improving tonal accuracy and compensating for the characteristics of your speakers, electronics and vehicle interior. The MS-8 can even store calibration settings for up to four seating positions, so you can select best-seat-in-the-house performance for almost anyone in your car. If you want to adjust the sound, the MS-8’s display and wireless controller will let you change it to suit your preferences. If you make a mistake, returning to the original settings is as simple as pressing a button.
“No one has ever invented an entirely new approach and product that transforms how consumers easily and non-invasively upgrade the music experience in their car,” said Christopher M. Dragon, director of consumer and field marketing at Harman International, parent company of the JBL brand. “Literally, it is a box that encapsulates some of the most advanced technology in the world. And with it, people will never experience music in their car the same way again.”
The MS-8 includes a sophisticated digital crossover function, which allows precise, user-selectable crossover points and crossover slopes for up to eight separate outputs. In addition, the MS-8 offers rich, crisp, realistic sound, using Logic 7® technology to create the ideal 5.1- or 7.1-channel surround-sound experience in the car from two-channel source material. “If you want to try your hand at installation, the MS-8 will let you fine-tune and manipulate the sound to customize your very own in-car listening experience, unique to your personal taste and needs,” said Gary Biggs, applications specialist, Harman Consumer, Inc. “With unrivaled, never-before-seen JBL technology, the MS-8 is redefining and reshaping the entire in-car sound customization experience.”
The MS-8 also includes capabilities such as a 31-band graphic equalizer, which allows users to adjust the system’s tonal balance to suit personal taste or to compensate for specific recordings, and the “Favorite Settings” feature, which stores up to five custom settings for one-button recall, optimizing the sound no matter what song or genre is being played.
31-band graphic equalizer that overrides automatic equalization to suit your personal taste
Preamplifier controls that control system volume, subwoofer volume, left/right balance, front/rear fader and bass/mid/treble tone controls, and override DSP equalization, time correction and Logic 7 processing
Favorite settings to store up to five custom settings for one-button recall
LCD display that includes five-line, 128 x 64-pixel screen that displays setup menus and operation status
Wireless RF remote to control menu navigation, volume and mute function
Onboard 20 watts x 8 amplifier, eight-channel preamp-level and speaker-level inputs and outputs, full-range stereo aux input
Pricing and Availability
The JBL MS-8 system integration digital processor’s selling price is $799 and available now. For more information please visit http://press.jbl.com/ms-8