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JL Audio TwK™ 88 System Tuning Processor

8-channel digital signal processor

11 Reviews | 10 questions - 13 answers

Item # 13698101

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$449.99 or 3 payments of $150.00  Details

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Our take on the JL Audio TwK™ 88 System Tuning Processor

If you're a sound tweaker like me, you'll love JL Audio's TwK 88 System Tuning Processor for all the powerful and detailed adjustments it can apply to your vehicle's sound system. With JL Audio's TwK-TüN app on your laptop or tablet, you'll gain access to real-time tuning that can really dial in your system, including 10-band equalization, variable high- and low-pass filtering, and time delay/alignment on every channel.

Tweak the sound to high-fidelity 

If you're a sound tweaker like me, you'll love JL Audio's TwK 88 System Tuning Processor for all the powerful and detailed adjustments it can apply to your vehicle's sound system. With JL Audio's TwK-TüN app on your laptop or tablet, you'll gain access to real-time tuning that can really dial in your system, including 10-band equalization, variable high- and low-pass filtering, and time delay/alignment on every channel.

It's as easy or complicated as you want

JL Audio has given the TwK 88 three Project Levels of tuning complexity (Basic, Advanced, and Expert) so you'll get fantastic sound no matter how much experience you've had tuning an audio system. The Basic Level guides you through the setups, options, and simple adjustments to achieve great sound in about 10 minutes. The Advanced Level adds extra crossover features, limited-parametric equalization, and delay/time alignment — for a tune-up that takes about 30 to 60 minutes. The Expert Project Level gives you free rein with fully manual adjustments and assignments, fully-parametric EQs, and advanced signal diagnostics, so you can take as much time as you like to play around with the sound.

Versatile connections and controls

Digital inputs and outputs ensure the cleanest, highest-quality signal connections for your TwK 88 processor in a high-definition audio system. You'll use the wired dash-mount remote to control master and subwoofer volume, select user presets, and check on the operational status of the TwK 88 so you'll know what's going on from the driver's seat.

JL Audio TwK-Tun

TwK-Tun assignments, EQ, delays, crossovers and more

Product Highlights:

  • 8-channel digital signal processor
  • DSP adjustments and settings made via Windows PC running JL Audio's TwK-TuN app
  • Three Project Levels of tuning:
    • Basic: (10-minute set-up time) guided channel setups, basic crossover functions, 10-band graphic EQ, no delay
    • Advanced: (30-60-minute set-up time) adds crossover options, limited parametric EQ, delay functions
    • Expert: full manual controls with input mixer, parametric EQ, signal diagnostics
  • 8 analog preamp inputs: (RCA), 2 digit inputs (optical and coax)
  • 8 analog preamp outputs (RCA), 1 digital output (optical)
  • all inputs assignable to any output channel
  • channel settings can be separate or linked together
  • 10-band EQ (graphic in Basic, parametric in Advanced and Expert modes)
  • time alignment in 0.02 ms increments
  • fully adjustable high- and low-pass filters
    • selectable filter slopes (6, 12, 18, 24, 30, 36, 42, 48 dB/octave)
  • DRC-200 wired remote control included
  • dimensions: 4-7/8"W x 1-15/16"H x 6-3/16"D
  • warranty: 2 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • Processor
  • 5-Pin Euroblock (Phoenix) connector
  • 15' USB cable (Type-A on one end
  • Type-B on other end
  • 2.0)
  • 18' Control cable w/ RJ-45 connectors on both ends
  • DRC-200 Level Control Knob w/ 46" attached cord terminating in a female RJ-45 socket and attached status LED w/ 38" cord
  • LED mounting collar
  • Two locking nuts
  • Two flat washers
  • Owner's manual

Best DSP ever tweet your sounds to perfection

OTIS, Erie, PA


JL Audio TwK™ 88 System Tuning Processor Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(11 Reviews)

Quality Product

Michael from Columbia, MD on 12/16/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This processor- both the hardware and the configuration software- is a quality product. Upgrading my stock system with new speakers, an amp, and additional soundproofing improved the sound but it still wasn't quite right. The TwK is providing ample options to compensate for vehicle acoustics and give me the clean sound I want. I'm still working on it, but I'm pleased with where this is going.

Pros: Excellent software programming environment. Quality product.

Cons: None.

Amazing sound quality

Crutchfield customer from Littleton, CO on 9/25/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

before I installed the TwK 88, I had an Alpine CDE 149BT, an Alpine KTP 445U amp and 6 Alpine speakers (2 tweets in the dash, mids in the front doors 2 ways in the rear doors and a powered sub under the front passengers seat). My truck was originally wired so the tweeters and the front mids were powered from the same circuit. it sounded okay, but I got A LOT of volume from the tweeters (even on the -3dB cross over setting). So I decided to buy a JL AudioXD600/6V2 and the JL Audio TwK 88. I split the tweeters and front door mids into their own channels. All I can say is WOW. The sound quality is miles better even with the same speakers. I am able to adjusted the volume from each speaker and blend everything together. No more overpowering tweeters. the 10 band/8 channel equalizer let me listen to music the way I like it. I could not be happier. the software is intuitive, the wiring is straight forward and I cannot get over the sound quality. My wife helped me with the install and even she commented on the difference.

Pros: the sound quality

Cons: JL Audio provides instruction on how to set up the DSP, but now all the software functions are described. I foresee several calls to JL.

Sound are you listening sound

OTIS from Erie, PA on 8/31/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Best DSP ever tweet your sounds to perfection

Pros: Tweaking your system to perfection

Cons: None

JL Audio TwK™ 88 System Tuning Processor

Josh from Kankakee, IL on 8/12/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Great product. Very easy to install and use. Couldn't ask for anything better.

Pros: Quality, ease of install, ease of use.

Cons: None

Nice little unit

David from Butler, IN on 4/30/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This is a very nice DSP that has a lot of adjust ability. DSP rating of 5 stars IMO would be next to impossible because none of them are perfect but i would without a doubt put this up against processors that cost more . I went from an Audison Bit One to this and I actually think it was an upgrade according to the RTA it for sure picks up 20 hz better also less noise with other components vs the Audison so no funky grounding techniques required. You can compete with this unit and be competitive

Pros: Tons of adjust ability small size very simple software

Cons: At fist the software seemed complex do not over think installation set up.

JL Audio TwK™ 88 System Tuning Processor

Juan from Flanders, NY on 10/27/2017

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Awsome product worth every penny amazingly flexible was able to filter all sounds and adjust just right in my system. PS. pushing around 12K rms



High quality, great sound - par for the course for JL Audio!

Jim from Bloomfield, CT on 4/30/2017

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Love this thing... powerful, well-made, easy to use (slight learning curve with the TuN software) and sounds great. Wish it had a pink noise generator. While using TuN, occasionally the unit disconnects & is not discoverable any longer. At first, I thought it was because the auto-save feature was enabled, but I turned if off & it happened again. The only way to get TuN/TwK talking again is to close the software, power down the unit & reconnect & restart TuN. A little inconvenient, but not a big deal. You can load up to 6 active "projects" - set them up differently (for example, different EQ settings or X-over slopes & you can switch between them to see what sounds ideal in your car. Use this with the wMic i436 microphone for iPad & the Analyzer app, you can set up your EQ for each speaker & really tailor your sound. Once again JL Audio builds a high quality, great sounding product for a really fair price. You can't go wrong with this thing - highly recommended. (JL Audio - fix the disconnect issue - firmware update maybe?

Pros: Easy to use Great build quality; small for easy placement Highly configurable; easy to dial-in the perfect sound to your tastes TuN software has demo mode - practice setting up your system & easy to use, once you're familiar Graphic or parametric EQ Easy to set proper gain (multi voltage settings & visual meters to check for clipping) Remote, configurable controller included Low-ish noise floor, still very quiet BANG FOR BUCK!

Cons: TwK/TuN disconnect from each other while you're setting up/"tweaking" your system SNR could be better; better DACs would help. Then again - that would drive up the price.

JL Audio TwK™ 88 System Tuning Processor

Kenny from Lacombe, LA on 11/14/2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Great product. Was very easy to set up and gave me enough control to fix the issues I was having.



Great for O.C.D.

Dysasterpiece from Milford, CT on 10/11/2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

For those of us with O.C.D. The JL audio TwK88 may just be the prescription for your car audio TweaKing. Set ,& forget ! So much control over the audio settings. Program,& save file in presets. Call up your presets at the press of the volume controller supplied with unit. No more fumbling around with head unit controls,menu's, & sub menu's in order to change Sound settings. This unit is very versatile, the level controller also has a second level controller that can be programmed to control level of bass, or what ever you need for level control. In my application, I have this programmed as a 4 way cross-over. I am able to fine tune x-over settings for each speaker.

Pros: Too many to list.

Cons: No cons that apply to my application.

Missing a Key Feature

Kevin from East Syracuse, NY on 8/23/2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

The TwK is Awesome. Tun software is easy to use. One issue I have is the TwK cant be switched from Analogue input to Digital Coaxal input without connecting to the Tun software. If you make presets for a particular installation and one preset is set to Analogue input and a different preset is set to Digital input the Twk will stay set at the input setting that was configured for the initial setup. It would be nice to be able to have the ability to switch from Analogue input to digital input using presets and the DRC 200. I talked with JL and they indicated this may be fixed in a future firmware update. The TWK can be updated with a PC to the latest firmware using an Ethernet cable .

Pros: Small footprint. Easy setup. Tun Software very effective.

Cons: The unit cant switch from Analogue input to Digital input using DRC-200.

Go Active!!!

mattwilkes84 from warner robins, GA on 7/7/2016

Setting up the Twk 88 in the Tun software is super simple... there are 3 levels of tunning, basic, advanced, and expert. I chose advanced for initial setup, and with flat eq on my Pioneer 4200nex and flat eq in the Tun software I actually could leave it as is and enjoy this system tremendously! I will admit, it is cool to pull out your laptop and adjust this thing! I actually purchase a Lenovo Idealpad for $129, just to run this system, it works great btw (i am a mac user so i don't spend much on windows virus). The included DRC-200 remote has an LED to let you know what preset you are currently on. For example, I have a setting with subs off and my 8's in the rear deck crossed-over at a lower frequency for easy listening. I have a setting for just front speakers and sub without rear deck... If you make any serious changes to the configuration with the Tun software while audio is playing it will mute all speakers momentarily and make you un-mute them by clicking a red speaker icon in the Tun Software. I upgraded to JL RCA cables and I am running the12w7 in the ProWedge with the XD1000/1v2. I am running the ZR650 components in front, and ZR800 in rear with a XD800/8. the Front speakers/tweeters are bi-amped with first 4 channels, and the ZR800's are each using 2 channels bridged...

Pros: excellent sound quality, cool factor, Ultimate control, easy to toggle presets

Cons: none yet


Hands-on research

Product Research


Overview: The JL Audio TwK88 is a car audio signal processor designed to give world-class system tuning capabilities in an easy to use format. Featuring an advanced 24-bit DSP processor, 8 analog RCA and 2 digital inputs that can be fully configured to any of the 8 analog RCA and 1 optical outputs, eight banks of 10-band graphic or parametric equalizers with configurable assignment, a powerful crossover section with high-, low-, and band-pass filtering with selectable slopes, front-seat control of configurable level and preset selection with the included DRC-200 Digital Remote Controller, and more. Configuration and routing are all done through a USB connected PC using JL Audio's TuN 2.0 software. Mac not supported.

Configuration: The TwK88 offers very flexible signal routing with a clear, user-friendly screen interface for the TuN software which is separated into two main sections: Setup and Tune. Different tune settings can be saved and recalled as Presets. A total of 10 Presets plus a Valet Preset can be stored in one Project file, with 6 Preset available for quick selection during use. The Valet Preset is directly tied to the Valet wire, which if grounded, will switch the TwK88 to Valet mode. This Preset can be assigned with much lower output levels or even have channels turned off, lessoning the risk of someone damaging speakers from turning the system up too high while the vehicle is being worked on or valet parked.

  • Setup: The Setup screen is easy to read and gives a clear picture of the entire routing path for all channels. Each channel is listed in the Inputs column with "clickable" routing lines for the signal path that can be "drawn" on-screen to the next step in the signal chain. Input Sensitivity can be set here with tri-colored meters to show signal level with clipping. Each input goes through the Input Mixer section, then to the Equalizers. This screen shows which channels go through which of the eight 10-band equalizers and includes a basic Level adjustment for each. From there, the signal paths run through the Crossover section and then to the assignable Output section. Each Output Channel includes a tri-colored Level Meter and a Mute button. Any of the Input Channels can be assigned to the Optical Digital output, however, this acts as a pass-through for the signal and no processing will be applied to those channels. Any signal input on either of the Digital Inputs will be processed unless assigned to the Optical Digital output. The Setup screen also includes a channel assignment section for the DRC-200 Digital Remote Controller's two rotary controls, allowing each channel to be individually assigned to either or both rotary functions.
  • Tune: The Tune screen is where detailed settings can be made to the Equalizer, Crossover, Delay/Polarity, and Output Level.
    • Equalizer: The TuN software includes eight assignable, 10-band Equalizers that can be either Graphic or Parametric. The Graphic EQ's default bands are: 31, 63, 125, 250, 500, 1000, 2000, 4000, 8000, and 16000 Hz while in Parametric mode, they're variable. The Q, or width of the EQ band, is fixed in Graphic EQ mode and variable from 0.26 to 10 in Parametric mode. Either type can have the Level adjusted by +6 dB to -12 dB. There's an option for Input Channel pairs to be Linked, so they both have identical EQ curves. Each EQ band can be individually bypassed as well.
    • Crossovers: Each signal channel can pass through its own Crossover to further refine the sound. Crossover types are: High-pass, Low-pass, and Band-pass filters with a choice between two Alignments: Linkwitz-Riley (with 12, 24, or 48 dB per octave slope options) and Butterworth (with 12, 18, 24, 36, or 48 dB per octave slope options).
    • Delay/Polarity: In order to compensate for uneven distances between speakers, the TuN software allows each channel to be delayed up to 21.3 milliseconds, or 24 feet of speaker distance. An Additional Delay setting allows the user to add more to the baseline delay in either 0.2 or 0.02 ms increments. A Polarity setting allows each channel to have the polarity inverted if necessary.
    • Output Level: This section gives each Output Channel a level trim control with a range of +12.0 to -12.0 dB.

DRC-200: The JL Audio DRC-200 is a panel-mounted, wired digital remote controller that connects to the JLid port of the TwK88. It consists of dual-concentric rotary controls with stops, push-button functionality for the inner knob, and a separate RGB LED status indicator that can be dash mounted. The control knob and the LED are both wired into a single RJ-45 socket via 46" cables. An 18' control cable, terminating in male RJ-45 jacks, plugs into this socket and is run back to the TwK88. The inner knob controls the Level for any channel assigned to it, and the outer knob can be assigned to control Subwoofer Level, Fader, or Zone control. Each knob can be independently assigned to any or all signal channels.

Inputs: The input side of the TwK88 has the following jacks:

  • RCAs: These comprise the 8 analog main input channels and are completely assignable.
  • Optical/Coax Digital: Either of the two digital inputs, if used, automatically get assigned to Channels 1 and 2.
  • USB Port: A Type-B, 2.0 USB port is used for connection to the TuN 2.0 software and for firmware updates.
  • JLID Port: This RJ-45 port is used for the DRC-200 Digital Remote Control.


  • RCAs: 8 RCA jacks comprise the main outputs of the TwK88 and are completely assignable. The output channels will get run to an outboard amplifier.
  • Optical Digital: This jack can pass an un-processed signal from either the Optical Digital input or from one pair of RCA input channels.
  • Power/Ground Connector: A 5-pin Euroblock connector provides the inputs for +12 VDC Battery, +12 VDC Switched (remote input), Ground, Remote Out (provides a +12 V, 100 mA remote signal to trigger aftermarket amplifiers), and a Valet In. This is provided to switch the processor to the Valet Preset when it sees a ground on this terminal.

Top Panel:

  • Preset Toggle: A small push-button allows you to toggle through the Presets.
  • Status LEDs: Two Signal Status LEDs are provided, one for Input signals and one for Output signals.
    • Amber: Unit is powered on, but no signal is present.
    • Green: Signal is present.
    • Momentary Red: Signal is clipping.


  • Power Supply Type: Regulated DC-DC SMPS
  • Input Operating Voltage: 10 - 16 VDC
  • Operating Current Draw: 0.7 A
  • Standby Current Draw: < 1.5 mA
  • Recommended Fuse: 1 A
  • Input Channels: 8
  • Input Type: Line-level, differential-balanced
  • Input Voltage Range: 250 mV - 7.1 V RMS
  • Minimum Input Voltage: 10 mV RMS
  • Input Level Setting: Eleven discrete selections from 250 mV - 7.1 V RMS
  • Output Channels: 8
  • Analog Output: Unbalanced, stereo RCA jacks
  • Digital Output: Optical
  • Digital Inputs: Optical and Coax
  • Output Impedance: 450 Ω
  • Latency:
    • Analog - Analog: 5.425 mS
    • Analog - Optical: 5.470 mS
    • Optical - Optical: 4.860 mS
    • Optical - Analog: 4.805 mS
  • S/N Ratio: 98 dB (A-weighted, referred to 4V RMS output)
  • THD+N @ Rated Output: 0.02% (20 Hz - 20 kHz)
  • Audio Resolution: 24 bit/ 48 kHz
  • Number of EQ bands: 10 x 8 Channels
  • Remote Level Control: DRC-200 (included)
  • Remote Level Functions: Master Volume Control + Trim, Master Volume Control + Fader, Zone Control, LED Status reporting
  • Dimensions: Width - 4.83", Height - 1.88", Dept - 6.15"
  • Weight: 2.58 lbs.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Staff Reviews

Product reviews from the Crutchfield Labs

JL Audio presents their flagship C7 component car speakers for use in an active system — perfect for audiophiles building the car audio system of their dreams.

What are the Labs?
Q & A

Customer Q&A

Crutchfield asked  
Why did you buy this?

Was recommended. Looks to be a powerful tool to configure my system. [ Ron  Jul 31, 2018 ]
I require 2 and already have 1. [ Brandon  Dec 26, 2017 ]
Require a nice DSP at a good price from a reputable brand. Also, because it is controlled via computer software, it can constantly be updated for new configuration options including possible algorithms. [ Brandon  Jul 07, 2017 ]
Wanted the flexibility of tuning with 4 channel crossover and to compliment the rest of my JL Audio components. The price was great for all of the options. [ Christopher  May 10, 2017 ]
JL audio is a relly good brand [ Juan  May 08, 2017 ]
I chose this because of its features, system flexibility, known JLA build quality and the reasonable price for what you're getting. Plus no other "stuff" is needed with this DSP (unlike some other DSPs that require some kind of control unit) I just ordered it, so can't comment on ease of use or sound quality. I've used the Helix DSP & currently have the AudioControl DQDX so I should be able to post a comparison. [ J  Apr 08, 2017 ]
The 8 input, 8 output matrix worked well for my application, and the size was very nice. Strongly considered the Audiocontol DM-810 instead, but the Audicontol was larger, and the functionality did not warrant the additional $200. [ Daniel  Feb 15, 2017 ]
To gain complete control of my car audio system. JL Audio makes great audio gear. [ DEWEY L  Nov 29, 2016 ]
I need a 4 way cross over set up, with added features. This appears to fit the bill. [ Dysasterpiece  Sep 14, 2016 ]

10 questions already asked

I installed the dsp , but haven't gotten around to doing the set up part ... sorry .????..but I already notice the improvement in my sounds . [ DWYANE A  May 01, 2018 ]
The app is free, not sure what you need a microphone for though [ JAMES  Apr 30, 2018 ]
It's recommended that you only use its DRC to control it. The radio's these day to different things to the audio as you adjust the volume which would counteract all of its corrective processing. I would only use it's DRC. My Bio: [ Paul  Jun 05, 2017 ]  Staff
Yes, according to the owner's manual (page 11) the JL Audio TwK 88 will accept either line-level or differential balanced inputs via the analog input section. If you would like to discuss further, please feel free to contact an Advisor directly by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. Hope that helps! [ Larry  May 29, 2017 ]  Staff
Used buss bars to enable multiple connections. But he should run the remote output from his cd player into the dsp only. The dsp then has it's own amp turn on output. Use that to avoid turn on pop. [ MICHAEL  May 19, 2017 ]
Considering you have down loaded the software on a laptop, you would use the laptop to set up the TWK88. Plug in supplied cable from TWK88, into laptop and set up your cross overs, & EQ. You can also set up time alignment. There are so many adjustments with the TWK88. An RTA is used to measure the " in car frequency response". Unless you plan on going to car audio competitions, do you really need to use an RTA? Remember,.. RTA's are generally used in conjunction with pink,or white noise generators. With that being said, not all music is recorded the same. You would have to use your ears to tune your system to the type of music you listen to. So, you may be thinking, I can just use a equalizer, & you would be correct thinking that. However, the TWK88 goes well beyond a equalizer. For instance , I am using the TWK in a 4 way set up. So, the tweets ,mids, midbasses, & subs are separately crossed over and are independently powered by amplifiers. With this set up I now have total control of each speaker, & using time alignment, I can focus stereo image almost wherever I want on the dashboard. You can download the software from JL audio, and tool around with the settings to get an idea if this will work for your application. Be warned, after you see what can be done you may just be the proud owner of the TWK88. [ Dysasterpiece  Mar 08, 2017 ]
The TWK-88 allows for real-time tuning and adjusting of all the available parameters, meaning you can hear each adjustment as you make it while playing music with the system on and connected to your laptop. It does not include a built-in RTA, but it only makes sense - If you're chasing hard numbers for frequency response, then you'll want to use an outboard dedicated RTA anyways with a matching external/dedicated microphone in the correct location (I use TrueRTA and a UMIK-1). [ James  Mar 07, 2017 ]
I use the TuN software with VirtualBox (free from Oracle) and it works perfectly [ James  Mar 07, 2017 ]
Their website only has a download available for Windows. Looks like you need a Parallels session with Windows running inside your Mac OS to make it work [ Nigel  Jul 22, 2016 ]
The ability to retain steering wheel controls will be determined by the receiver you are using and the vehicle you have. For full information on this type of integration (including the parts you will need) please contact an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. [ Kenny  Jul 22, 2016 ]  Staff
The Eclipse stereo wouldn't offer a digital output for a CD changer as it wouldn't supply digital audio TO a changer. It may have a digital INPUT to accept the digital audio from CDs playing in the external changer. If so, you wouldn't be able to use the connection to provide digital audio out to the JL Audio. If your Eclipse does offer a digital audio output for some other purpose, yes, you can likely connect it to the optical input of the TwK system for processing. I hope that helps. My Bio: [ Ryan  Jul 09, 2016 ]  Staff
Refer to page 11 of the installation manual. The Twk 88 accepts line-level, differential balanced analog inputs; however, the analog outputs are unbalanced and not differential balanced. [ David  Jul 20, 2016 ]