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JBL Classic Series celebrates its European premiere at the High End 2023

It was first presented at the beginning of the year in Las Vegas as part of the Harman ExPLORE 2023, and now Harman Luxury Audio is using the High End 2023 in Munich to present the new JBL Classic Series in Europe as well.

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  • The new JBL Classic Series from Harman Luxury Audio celebrated its European premiere at the High End 2023.

The JBL Classic Series celebrated its premiere at the Harman ExPLORE 2023 at the beginning of the year, an event that took place at the same time as the CES 2023 in Las Vegas. Now Harman Luxury Audio also presented the solutions of the JBL Classic Series at the High End 2023, celebrating their European premiere in Munich.

Just the right time, because as promised, the systems of the JBL Classic Series, the stereo integrated amplifier JBL SA550 Classic Integrated Amplifier, the streaming media player JBL MP350 Classic Streamer, the JBL CD350 Classic CD Player and the record player JBL TT350 Classic Turntable, will now actually be available soon.

JBL Classic Series – a broad product line

First of all, it has to be said that the JBL Classic Series is not entirely new, but Harman Luxury Audio used to refer only to loudspeaker systems, both active and passive, for example the JBL L100 Classic. What is new is that this product line now also includes hi-fi components, which means that we can now speak of a completely new series.

It is astonishing that the new JBL Classic Series is a really broad product line. Besides a stereo integrated amplifier, a CD player and a streaming client, there is even a record player.

In the field of hi-fi electronics, the JBL Classic Series offers, as already mentioned, the JBL SA550 Classic Integrated Amplifier, the JBL CD350 Classic CD Player and the JBL MP350 Classic Streamer, two digital source devices, and the JBL TT350 Classic Turntable, a record player.

Timeless design and state-of-the-art technology

The aim of the developers was to create a timeless design for the solutions of the JBL Classic Series, in which a certain retro touch, a direct connection to vintage hi-fi, can be recognised.

For example, the JBL SA600 Integrated Amplifier, which was launched in the 1960s and which already served as a model for the exclusive JBL SA750 Integrated Amplifier, which Harman Luxury Audio presented on the occasion of JBL’s 75th birthday in 2021.

Harman Luxury Audio itself speaks of a retro design, using the same natural walnut veneers as the JBL Classic Series speaker systems, as well as machined aluminium front panels and controls.

Most importantly, the latest technologies are used to provide electronics for both digital and analogue content that deliver an unsurpassed listening experience. The JBL Classic Series is designed to combine the finest hi-fi components and matching speakers to create audio systems that offer the charm of retro design and cutting-edge features paired with the best acoustic performance.

“Whether streaming audio from a mobile device or enjoying a CD or record, the latest additions to our Classic Series create immersive experiences for listeners that bring music to life. And they look as great as they sound. With their retro design, they pair perfectly with each other and with JBL Classic and Studio Monitor speakers for a sleek, cohesive look in any environment.”

Jim Garrett, Senior Director, Product Strategy and Planning, Harman Luxury Audio

JBL SA550 Classic Integrated Amplifier and JBL MP350 Classic Streamer

The JBL SA550 Classic Integrated Amplifier and JBL MP350 Classic Streamer from Harman Luxury Audio are designed to make it easy for users to stream music services and personal libraries from their smartphones and tablets. Featuring an advanced Class-G amplifier topology with high output power and the latest Bluetooth aptX Adaptive- technology for high-resolution wireless audio and low latency, the JBL SA550 Classic can be instantly paired with mobile devices to instantly deliver high-quality music.

Once connected to a network via WiFi or Ethernet, the Roon ready JBL MP350 Classic streamer allows listeners to enjoy music directly from Spotify Connect and TIDAL Connect, as well as a variety of additional music services via Google Chromecast or Apple AirPlay 2. According to the manufacturer, both components process digital audio using a reference hi-res audio DAC with time-domain jitter elimination technology for perfect sound every time.

JBL CD350 Classic CD Player and JBL TT350 Classic Turntable

For listening to CDs and records, the JBL CD350 Classic CD Player and JBL TT350 Classic Turntable are available. Here, too, the focus is on maximum flexibility and impeccable quality, as the manufacturer explicitly emphasises.

In addition to pure audio CDs, the JBLCD350 Classic also supports CD-R and CD-RW media and can play back audio data in FLAC, WAV, MP3, AAC and WMA formats. This also applies to data that is used here via a USB-A port.

It is also worth mentioning the particularly high-quality loading of the drive and the signal processing with state-of-the-art D/A converters for bit-perfect playback, as promised by the manufacturer itself.

The JBL TT350 Classic Turntable is a turntable with a direct drive, whereby Harman Luxury Audio promises a particularly precise speed control for 33 1/3 or 45 revolutions per minute.

The rotation speeds are controlled by a speed sensor for perfect pitch and adjusted accordingly.

The turntable’s curved aluminium tonearm features a high-quality MM cartridge mounted on a removable headshell for easy replacement and upgrade.

Cushioned and adjustable feet reduce vibration while allowing positioning on uneven surfaces. The JBL TT350 Classic features a tinted, hinged dust cover that matches its walnut cabinet and completes its authentic retro appearance. It is the perfect complement to the phono preamplifier input available on the JBL SA550 Classic Integrated Amplifier.

Prices and availability

The new JBL Classic Series solutions are expected to be available at retailers in the second quarter of 2023, according to the manufacturer. The company is quoting a suggested retail price of € 1.899,- for the JBL SA550 Classic Integrated Amplifier, € 899,- for the JBL CD350 Classic CD Player and € 999,- for the JBL MP350 Classic Streamer. The JBL TT350 Classic Turntable will cost € 1.049,-.

Getting to the point

Until now, the JBL Classic Series offered active as well as passive loudspeaker systems, with Harman Luxury Audio Group focusing on solutions that combine modern technology with the charm of vintage hi-fi. This concept is now being applied to the hi-fi components that will also be part of the JBL Classic Series, namely the JBL SA550 Classic Integrated Amplifier, JBL CD350 Classic CD Player, JBL MP350 Classic Streamer and JBL TT350 Classic Turntable.

PriceJBL SA550 Classic Integrated Amplifier 1.899,-
JBL MP350 Classic Streamer € 999,-
JBL CD350 Classic CD Player € 899,-
JBL TT350 Classic Turntable € 1.049,-
ManufacturerHarman International Industries
DistributionHarman Deutschland GmbH
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Michael Holzinger

Michael Holzinger, founder and editor-in-chief of HiFi BLOG and sempre-audio.at, has been working for years as a journalist in the fields of IT, photography, telecommunications and consumer electronics.

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