About the JBL HDI-3800
A true tower of power
A true tower of power
JBL has been developing brilliant speaker technology for decades, and they integrated that knowledge into this big, beautiful speaker. The JBL HDI-3800 features three 8" woofers and a horn-loaded compression driver that can stand up to all the sound the woofers produce. And it comes in three gorgeous finishes that match just about any decor.
Impressive compression driver
JBL uses horn-loaded compression drivers in speaker arrays for large concert venues — they fill space with clear sound in a way a standard dome tweeter can't. This same technology is used in the HDI-3800 floor-standers. That means you can enjoy for expansive, crystal-clear sound. The driver is recessed in a waveguide, which ensures that detailed high frequencies are dispersed across a wide seating area.
A solid foundation for midrange and bassEach speaker's three 8" woofers are lightweight, rigid Advanced Aluminum Matrix cones. They feature a long-throw voice coil for high output and low distortion, serving up midrange detail and deep bass. The drivers are housed in an elegantly rounded cabinet made from 3/4"-thick MDF and heavily braced to eliminate sound-muddying vibrations.
My first-hand experience with JBL HDI-3800 speakers
JBL demonstrated the HDI-3800 in our training room at Crutchfield HQ. I got a chance to listen to a pair powered by the Arcam SA20, which provides 150 watts at 4 ohms — plenty of power to fill the high-ceilinged room, which also contained around 20 Crutchfield employees.
I was just blown away by the room-spanning soundstage these speakers produced. A JBL rep used Jamestown Revival's cover of Helplessly Hoping by Crosby, Stills and Nash as a demo track, and the gorgeous vocal harmonies produced goosebumps. The singers' voices blended smoothly, but each voice was also distinct within the mix. You could hear every nuance, with an inviting sense of space around it.
The experience was similar with instrumental music. I could pick out individual instruments and locate them in space, which is exactly what I expect from a speaker in this class.
The percussion was powerful. With three 8" woofers in each speaker, you get an absolute wall of sound, including plenty of low end.
I'd be remiss if I didn't point out that they're flat-out beautiful to look at, too.
What about amplification?
The HDI-3800 speakers have a sensitivity rating of 92 dB. That's pretty efficient – especially for speakers in this class. But with a nominal impedance of 4 ohms, you'll definitely want an amp that's 4-ohm stable. We always recommend solid power to get the most out of any pair of speakers.
The HDI-3800 doesn't include any speaker wire. Read our article about choosing and installing speaker wire.
Shop our selection of speaker wire.
- 2-1/2 way design
- 1" horn-loaded Teonex high-frequency compression driver with HDI (High Definition Imaging) waveguide technology for smooth, uniform response across a wide listening area
- three 8" Advanced Aluminum Matrix cone woofers with cast frames for punchy midrange and bass
- curved cabinet is constructed of 3/4"-thick MDF and heavily braced to dampen internal vibrations
- bass-reflex design with dual rear-firing ports
- frequency response: 37-30,000 Hz (-6dB)
- sensitivity: 92 dB
- impedance: 4 ohms
- high-current amplification from a quality power amp or integrated amplifier is recommended for best performance
- recommended amplifier power: 25-300 watts
- dual five-way binding post speaker terminals allow bi-amping or bi-wiring
- magnetic cloth grilles
- automotive-grade high-gloss black painted finish
Dimensions and warranty:
- 11-13/16"W x 43-3/8"H x 16-1/2"D
- weight: 83.78 lbs.
- warranty: 5 years
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
- MFR # JBLHDI3800BLQAM
What's in the box:
- Floorstanding loudspeaker
- 2 Jumper-straps (pre-installed)
- 4 Spike feet
- Owner's Manual
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More details on the JBL HDI-3800
Features & specs
|Tweeter Size (inches)||1|
|Midrange Size (inches)||N/A|
|Woofer Size (inches)||8|
|Built-in Powered Sub||No|
|Dolby Atmos Drivers||No|
|Connector Type||5-Way post|
|Parts Warranty||5 Years|
|Labor Warranty||5 Years|
|Frequency Response||37-30k Hz|
|Subwoofer Amp Power||---|
2.5-Way Driver Design: The JBL HDI-3800 floorstanding loudspeaker uses a 2.5-way driver design featuring a 1" horn-loaded tweeter with patented High-Definition Imaging (HDI) waveguide technology and three 8" Advanced Aluminum Matrix cone woofers for powerful dynamics and incredibly accurate sound reproduction.
- 1" Horn-Loaded Tweeter with Waveguide: At the core of JBL's new 1" HDI horn-loaded tweeter is a lightweight, Teonex polymer, annular diaphragm that improves high-frequency extension by reducing diaphragm mass. The V-shaped geometry of the annular diaphragm reduces breakup modes, eliminating time smear and reducing distortion. The result is incredible dynamics with accurate reproduction and a lack of power compression. The HDI tweeter also utilizes JBL's revolutionary HDI waveguide technology for exceptional high-frequency detail with uniform directivity and smooth in-room response. JBL engineers pioneered this design to deliver neutral frequency response both on- and off-axis, and provide a seamless transition between the high and low frequency drivers.
- Three 8" Aluminum Matrix Cone Woofers: Three 8" HDI woofers take advantage of core JBL engineering techniques to ensure very high output with low distortion. The long-throw 1.5" voice coil in conjunction with the symmetrical field motor design, flux stabilization ring, and copper shorting ring guarantee maximum output with significantly reduced distortion. The Advanced Aluminum Matrix cone provides a lightweight, rigid diaphragm and eliminate breakup modes ensuring proper pistonic motion throughout the operating band.
Bass Reflex Cabinet: The HDI-3800 enclosure is constructed from 0.75" MDF and is heavily braced to provide a solid acoustic foundation. It incorporates a bass reflex design with two rear-firing, computer-optimized flared ports for bigger bass response and greater efficiency. The sophisticated curved cabinet features a modern design finished in a choice of automotive-grade painted High Gloss Black, or furniture-grade satin Walnut or Gray Oak wood veneers. A gloss black plinth is integrated into the base of the cabinet and it comes with a black cloth, magnetically attached grille to complete the enclosure's elegant appearance.
Dual Binding Posts: The JBL HDI-3800 is outfitted with two sets of gold-plated, 5-way binding posts allowing to bi-amp or bi-wire the floorstanding loudspeaker. These gold-plated binding post terminals offer an exceptional audio signal and resistance to corrosion. The 5-way binding posts also ensure a secure connection to many types of cable and connectors. The binding post terminals will accept bare wire (up to 10AWG), pin-connectors, spade-lugs and banana plugs (single or dual).
- Bi-Wiring: Bi-wiring can provide noticeable improvements in the overall transparency of your loudspeakers. Run separate speaker wires to the low & high frequency drivers from a single amplifier (the upper set of binding posts are for the high frequency drivers; the lower set of binding posts are for the low frequency drivers).
- Bi-Amping: Bi-amping allows you to use separate amplifiers for the high & low frequency sections of your loudspeaker for greater dynamic range & lower distortion. We recommend that your separate amplifiers have identical gain to preserve the speaker's voicing balance.
Note: If you decide to bi-wire or bi-amp, you must remove the jumpers between the terminal posts (failure to do this could result in damage to your amplifier and loudspeakers).
Rubber or Spike Feet: The JBL HDI-3800 floorstanding loudspeaker features integrated rubber feet for hardwood, ceramic, vinyl, and laminate flooring. Spike feet are also included that screw into the bottom of the rubber feet for carpeted floors.
- Dimensions with Rubber Feet: 11.9375" (w) x 45.0" (h) x 16.5625" (d)
- Dimensions with Spike Feet: 11.9375" (w) x 45.125" (h) x 16.5625" (d)
Application & Placement Options: The JBL HDI-3800 floorstanding loudspeakers can be used as a stereo pair in a 2ch music application, or as front and surround speakers in a multichannel home theater application. Following these guidelines when positioning your speakers for your type of application.
- As Stereo or Front Speakers: A pair of loudspeakers should form an equal-distant triangle with the main listening position. For the best results, place a pair of speakers 6 to 10' apart from one another and the main listening position (on either side of your TV in a home theater application). Angling the speakers toward the listening position can improve the stereo imaging. The speakers will provide the most accurate stereo sounstage when the angle between the listener and the speakers is between 40 and 60 degrees.
- As Surround & Surround Back Speakers: When used as surround channels, place the speakers slightly behind your main listening position facing one another. When used as surround back channels, place the speakers directly behind the listening position facing the front speakers and approximately 3 to 6' apart.
Note: Generally, bass output will increase as the speakers are moved closer to a wall or corner. For the best performance, it is recommended that you place the speakers at least 20" away from the side walls.
HDI (High Definition Imaging) Series: JBL's new HDI Series featuring patented High-Definition Imaging waveguides and revolutionary JBL compression driver technology showcases a wealth of JBL acoustic technologies and high quality audio performance to go with a contemporary and beautiful look. The HDI series consists of two floorstanding loudspeakers (HDI-3600/HDI-3800), one bookshelf loudspeaker (HDI-1600), a center-channel loudspeaker (HDI-4500), and a powered subwoofer (HDI-1200) - all sold separately).