Most helpful critical review
13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Has it got the beat? Maybe, maybe not
on June 3, 2007
As I discovered upon reading the JBL Radial's troubleshooting instructions, these units seem to be unusually susceptible to interference from other consumer electronics.
Most of my iPod music is exercise or dance music that plays well with headphones or through my car stereo. But when I initially plugged my iPod into the JBL Radial, every beat made a crackling noise. This seemed to happen no matter how low the volume was set. (I tend to keep the volume low since I live in an apartment building.)
If I turned my iPod's bass booster on, the experience was like listening to Rice Krispies -- Snap! Crackle! Pop! When I turn my iPod's bass reducer on, all was well -- but who wants to listen to dance or exercise music with every hint of bass stripped out?
The troubleshooting instructions suggested relocating a unit if it suffers from such crackling or popping noises, which might be due to interference. There were no sources of interference in my case, but perhaps the apartment tenants next door had equipment near our shared wall. Whatever the case, I moved the Radial to different positions in the same room, with no improvement in performance.
Weeks later, I tried the unit again, and this time it sounded fine. But I'm concerned that the crackle and pop might return, and while I appreciate the troubleshooting instructions, wouldn't it make more sense for JBL to simply make the Radial less sensitive to other electronics?