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JBL's Stage 2 Architectural and Stage XD Outdoor Speakers are Shipping!

Dec 12, 2023

JBL's Stage 2 Architectural and Stage XD Outdoor Speakers

JBL’s architectural and outdoor speakers have been a longtime favorite of custom installers, restaurants, sports bars, and hotel pool areas. Yes, I’m one of those guys who looks. The compact size and affordable price point combined with JBL’s history of quality sound and craftmanship made them one of the most ubiquitous speakers I've encountered.

So when Harman Audio announced they would be releasing a new line of JBL architectural and outdoor speakers back in May, custom installers clamored for more information on a shipping date. JBL announced at CEDIA in Dallas, Texas that their Stage 2 Architectural Loudspeakers and Stage XD Series outdoor loudspeakers are now shipping!

We couldn’t be more excited to announce that our highly anticipatedStage 2 Architectural Series and Stage XD Series loudspeakers are nowavailable. Designed to be heard and not seen, the Stage 2 ArchitecturalSeries provides high-performance sound at an affordable price point tomeet the budget requirements of any installation. And by offering one ofthe highest levels of ingress protection available, not only are StageXD Series loudspeakers built for prolonged exposure to harsh conditions,they’re also designed to come apart and undergo repair in case ofdamage, instead of finding their way to the landfill. We can’t wait toshow these loudspeakers off at CEDIA Expo, so attendees should be sureto stop by the booth to experience them first-hand.

--Jim Garrett, Senior Director, Product Strategy andPlanning, HARMAN Luxury Audio.

The Stage 2 Architectural speakers feature eight models in various configurations for both in-wall and in-ceiling installations. The JBL Stage 2 loudspeakers feature a 1-inch/25-millimeter aluminum tweeter with an acoustic lens and waveguide. Polycellulose cone woofers, premium air-core inductors, and mylar cap capacitor crossover network components should ensure that sound remains dynamic at most listening levels. A rigid baffle design with acoustic smoothing is designed to provide improved transducer integration. All JBL speakers also go through Harman’s target curve acoustic performance system which help to ensure a smooth, accurate sound over a large listening area.

In wall models include the dual 5.25-inch Stage 250WL, 6.5-inch Stage 260W, and 8-inch Stage 280W models. These all come with larger waveguides with JBL’s patented High-Definition Imaging (HDI) geometry for smooth dispersion and low distortion.

In-ceiling models include the 6.5-inch Stage 260C, 8-inch Stage 280C, and the dual 6.5-inch Stage 260CDT. All three models incorporate nickel-plated, spring-loaded connectors and have mounting depths of under 4.5 inches.

Wrapping up the series are two unique Ceiling Square Angled (CSA) models; the 6.5-inch Stage 260CSA and 8-inch Stage 280CSA. Both feature a contemporary square footprint and a baffle with the transducers positioned at a 15-degree angle, allowing them to focus sound at the listening position. This makes them ideal for in-ceiling Atmos speakers for those that like their sound more directed at the listening area instead of just firing straight down.

All Stage 2 Architectural models will include paintable, zero bezel magnetically attached grilles that should blend easily into any décor. In the past, we liked JBL’s XL-2 mounting system. The system allows for quick installation and is compatible with up to 2-inch/50-millimeter material thickness. Preconstruction brackets are available for all models, and square grille accessory kits are available for the Stage 260C, Stage 280C, and Stage 260CDT round in-ceiling models.

JBL’s Stage XD Series outdoor speakers are offered in two sizes and like other JBL outdoor speakers we've seen in the past, we're sure they are built for extreme durability.

The Stage XD Series all-weather loudspeakers combine patented JBL acoustic technologies with IP-67 rated weatherized waterproof enclosures to bring the magic of JBL sound outdoors for year-round entertainment.

--Harman Audio

We know that JBL produces quality outdoor speakers, but IP-67 rating means the unit can be dropped into a body of water up to a meter deep for half an hour. The other unique feature of the new outdoor speakers are a sustainably designed packaging and product. The JBL Stage XD Series speakers are the first repairable IP-67 outdoor loudspeakers available.

The Stage XD-5 and XD-6 feature a 5.25-inch/130-mm and 6.5-inch/165-mm polycellulose cone woofer, respectively, and a 1-inch/25-mm aluminum tweeter with an acoustic lens and HDI waveguide. Wall-mounts are included, and the loudspeakers also feature Zero Bezel magnetically attached grilles and a rotatable logo for horizontal and vertical applications. Both speakers are offered in black or white finishes.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

Tony is our resident expert for lifestyle and wireless products including soundbars. He does most of the reviews for wireless and streaming loudspeakers and often compares soundbars in round ups and helps us cover the trade shows.

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Stage 260W, 280W, 250WL, 260C, 280C, 260CDT, 260CSA, 280CSA, Stage XD-6, Stage XD-5JBLNovember 08, 2022 00:20 150/each - Stage 260W, $225/each - 280W, $250/each - 250WL, $150/each - 260C, $225/each - 280C, $175/each - 260CDT, $150/each - 260CSA, $225/each - 280CSA, $600/pair - Stage XD-6, $450/pair - Stage XD-5--Jim Garrett, Senior Director, Product Strategy andPlanning, HARMAN Luxury Audio.--Harman Audio