Yamaha HS5 vs JBL One Series 104: Detailed Speaker Comparison 2024 Guide

You're ready to make a big purchase, but you're having trouble deciding between these two powerhouses, the Yamaha HS5 and the JBL One Series 104.

Trust me, I know how difficult that decision is… especially if you have no plans on whipping out that dreaded return postage label!

You know how the saying goes, buy right, buy once! Or something like that…

Either way, I've got you covered!

I've broken down the good, the bad and the ugly of these babies, so providing you have a clear idea of exactly what you plan on doing with it, you will have a clear idea on which one is best for you, by the end of this article.

Let get into it…

Yamaha HS5 vs JBL One Series 104

At A Glance:

Yamaha HS5


Yamaha HS5 Pros & Cons

  • Pros:
  • Sound quality is clear and uncolored.
  • Shows mid range and treble frequencies better than some headphones.
  • Great for mixing tracks, as they reveal every detail of the recording.
  • Speakers do not color the sound with any amplification.
  • After the break-in period, the sound becomes even better.
  • Highly recommended for those who want to modify their tracks.
  • Cons:
  • Sub 100hz isn't as juicy as some might prefer.
  • Initial impression may seem underwhelming due to the speakers sounding “normal”.
  • Not suitable for those who prefer bass-heavy sound or casual listening.
  • Each speaker unit requires its own power source, requiring extra wall outlets.
  • Requires external soundcard or audio interface, and specific cables for connection.
  • Requires careful placement and room acoustics for optimal sound.
  • May require additional investment in soundproofing or isolation pads for best results.
  • Sound becomes muffled if not sitting in the ‘sweet spot'.

JBL One Series 104

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JBL One Series 104 Pros & Cons

  • Pros:
    • Designed for optimum performance at arm's length from the listening position.
    • Good entry level reference speakers for home recording/production studio environment.
    • Reproduce digital masters well.
    • Perform well with commercial HD evaluation recordings.
    • Generally accurate, particularly for their price point.
    • Good imaging.
    • Quick and punchy lower midrange/midbass.
    • Sound is balanced and less ear fatiguing compared to some other speakers.
    • Excellent for the price point.
  • Cons:
    • A bit bottom heavy centered around 100Hz, up by about 3dB from a reference 1k Hz tone.
    • Mixes and masters made using the 104s may tend to be a bit light in the upper bass in some instances.
    • Top end is very peaky, affecting the sound of some female vocals and guitars.
    • Midrange is extremely thin, particularly affecting male vocals.
    • Low end is nonexistent.
    • Distort easily, particularly when used to fill a larger room.
    • Not a lot of fun to listen to due to lack of dynamics, thin midrange, and peaky top end.
    • Volume isn't as high as expected for their power rating.
    • Don't have the spacious soundstage some users might expect.
    • Shaped like a suppository, leading to stability issues.
    • Power cord doesn't fit tightly.

Key Differences Between The Yamaha HS5 And The JBL One Series 104

Yamaha HS5 vs JBL One Series 104

The main differences between Yamaha HS5 and JBL One Series 104 are related to their design, sound performance, power output, and user preferences.

The Yamaha HS5 serves a frequency response range from 88Hz to 20,000Hz (-3dB), assuring that you perceive every nuance in the sound spectrum. The built-in 60-watt Class D amplifier, which distributes 30 watts to each speaker, facilitates delivering lucid, intricate, and unblemished sound even at high volumes.

Contrastingly, the JBL One Series 104, despite its compact design suitable for confined desk spaces, doesn't compromise on performance. The JBL 104 produces an unbiased and detailed sonic profile thanks to JBL's superior sound technology.

When it comes to power output comparisons:

  • The JBL LSR305 is ahead, boasting an impressive maximum output of up to 80W.
  • In contrast, the Yamaha HS5 has a peak output of just 70W.

This difference empowers the JBL LSR305 with extra punchiness in bass presentation.

However, some users favor the Yamaha HS5 for mixing tasks due to its flat response feature. This trait allows one to create precise mixes by hearing every detail as they are without coloration or exaggeration.

Both monitors share a key characteristic – a wide sweet spot. This means they can distribute sound evenly across any space offering flexibility in your positioning while mixing or listening.

In conclusion: Both monitors are excellent choices; however, your final choice will depend on personal preference and requirements such as whether you prioritize power over compactness or accuracy over bass depth. Don't forget your budget too since there might be some price differences between these two models!

SpecificationsYamaha HS5JBL One Series 104
Type2-Way bass-reflex bi-amplified nearfield studio monitorJBL104 reference monitors
Woofer/Tweeter5″ cone woofer and 1″ dome tweeterCoaxial 4. 5-Inch (118 mm) LF driver and 0. 75-Inch (19 mm) soft-dome HF driver
Frequency Response54Hz-30kHzNot specified
Power Amplification45W LF plus 25W HF bi-amp system for high-performance 70W power amplificationIntegrated 60-watt Class D power amplifier; 30 watts distributed to each speaker
ControlsRoom Control and High TRIM response controlsFront-panel volume control and headphone jack with speaker mute feature
InputsXLR and TRS phone jack inputs accept balanced or unbalanced signalsInput connectors: 2x 1/4-inch balanced; 2x RCA; 1x 1/8-inch unbalanced
Additional FeaturesNot specifiedThree sets of inputs allow connection with professional equipment, personal music players and consumer products
Accessories IncludedNot specifiedPurchase includes: 1x extension monitor speaker wire (2-Conductor, 2 meters); 1x 1/8-inch (3. 5 mm) to RCA audio cable; 1x AC power cable; 1x quick setup guide

What You Need To Know About Yamaha HS5

The Yamaha HS5 is a top-notch studio monitor that's perfect for anyone looking to enhance their music production. This 2-way, bass-reflex, bi-amplified nearfield monitor comes with a 5-inch cone woofer and a 1-inch dome tweeter. It's capable of delivering clear, balanced sound across an impressive frequency range of 54Hz to 30kHz.

What sets the HS5 apart is its high-performance power amplification. With a combined power of 70W (45W LF plus 25W HF), this monitor ensures accurate sound reproduction. That means you'll be able to hear every detail in your tracks!

The HS5 also offers Room Control and High TRIM response controls. This allows you to adjust the output for optimal sound in any environment – whether in the studio or at home.

Plus, it comes with versatile XLR and TRS phone jack inputs that can accept both balanced or unbalanced signals. That means it's easy to integrate into any setup.

Want to know more about this fantastic piece of equipment? Check out Yamaha's official website where you can find all sorts of additional information on the Yamaha HS5!

My 1 Month Review Of The Yamaha HS5

My 1 Month Review Of The Yamaha HS5

One Month In: My Thoughts on the Yamaha HS5

First off, I've got to say, a month in and the Yamaha HS5 has completely bowled me over. It's been an absolute joy to integrate this speaker into my home studio setup.

I was initially drawn to it based on its sleek aesthetics alone (me being a sucker for clean lines and modern design), but upon firing it up, I quickly realized it boasts way more than just a pretty exterior.

Sound Quality

Without a doubt, this thing sounds incredible. The output is unbelievably clean – every beat and note sounds crystal clear. The highs are crisp without being shrill, the lows substantial without overwhelming the mix. And the mid-range? Absolutely spot-on.

The precision of sound reproduction has really helped enhance my music creation process. Whether I'm composing or listening back, every sound detail comes through.

Crisp Highs & Substantial Lows: Balanced output that doesn't compromise in any register
Meticulous Sound Reproduction: Every minute detail is accurately represented

User Experience

The HS5 is easy to use right out of the box – plug-and-play at its best. The rear panel controls allow for quick adjustments when required. It fits perfectly inside my setup with minimal fuss and takes up very little space despite its solid performance – a huge plus-point from someone who values compactness and low clutter.

The build quality feels robust – it’s clearly designed to last which makes me feel like I've invested in something worthwhile.

User-friendly Controls: Simple interface that's easy even for beginners
Solid Build: Robust construction designed for longevity

A Few Caveats…

Now onto some honesty – no product's perfect right?

I must mention there is slight coloration when you crank up the volume fully which can be mitigated by proper room treatment. Also as a budget speaker, don’t expect deep sub-bass frequencies from these babies – you might need an additional subwoofer for that sort of action.

Though these points didn't majorly impact my experience with them – thought they're worth mentioning so you know what you're getting into.

Overall though? The Yamaha HS5 has definitely won me over with its stellar combination of sound quality, ease-of-use and aesthetic appeal.

Would I recommend them? Absolutely! But remember: your ears should be your ultimate guide.

What You Need To Know About JBL One Series 104

The JBL One Series 104 is an impressive piece of audio equipment perfect for both professional and home use. You can connect it with most desktops, laptops, recorders and even your personal music players. Thanks to its special design, you can set it up on your desk and enjoy optimal sound.

This JBL speaker offers three sets of inputs. This means you can connect it not only with professional devices but also consumer products like your phone or tablet. It's got a useful front-panel volume control and a headphone jack.

What's cool here is the speaker mute feature; no need to unplug your headphones if someone walks in while you're jamming – just hit mute!

Let's talk about the sound quality now. The JBL 104 packs a coaxial 4.5-inch LF driver and a 0.75-inch soft-dome HF driver giving you balanced bass and treble sounds in one compact package.

Power? Oh yeah! This thing comes with an integrated 60-watt Class D power amplifier – that's 30 watts per speaker!

The purchase includes: a monitor speaker wire (2 meters), an audio cable for connecting to other devices (RCA to 3.5 mm), AC power cable to keep your tunes going, and a quick setup guide so you can start using as soon as possible!

In terms of input connectors, you get two each of balanced (1/4-inch) and RCA connectors, along with one unbalanced (1/8 inch). Now that's audio versatility!

So there it is folks – the JBL One Series 104 – designed for convenience without compromising on performance!

My 1 Month Review Of The JBL One Series 104

My 1 Month Review Of The JBL One Series 104

Design and Aesthetics

The JBL One Series 104 is quite a looker. With its sleek minimalist design, it easily fit into my workspace without being an eyesore. The black casing is quite sturdy too; it definitely feels like it can withstand a few bumps here and there.

Ease of Use

Setup was easy as pie. I had them connected to my desktop in less than five minutes.
The front panel controls were very accessible and straightforward to use – I could easily adjust volume or power them on and off. No fiddling around with hard-to-reach buttons or confusing interfaces.

Sound Quality

Now, onto the most crucial bit – how they sound.
The sound quality truly made an impression on me. It fills the room with crisp, detailed sound whether I'm working casually or having a movie night.

Bass response was impressive.
I wasn't expecting such deep lows from these small speakers, but they deliver without any distortion even at higher volumes.

Mid-tones are clear and pronounce themselves without being overly dominant or intrusive.
And let's not forget about the highs – the treble is clear-cut without any sizzling or harshness.


After using them for more than a month, I can vouch for their durability.
They've held up incredibly well through constant use, showing no signs of wear and tear.

In Summary…

The JBL One Series 104 has exceeded my expectations in terms of design, usability and indeed sound quality.

  • Aesthetically pleasing
  • User-friendly interface
  • Solid build quality
  • Fantastic sound output

They're compact yet powerful speakers that deliver excellent performance all around.
Worth every penny if you ask me! Would highly recommend the JBL One Series 104 to anyone looking for studio-quality audio at home.

Who The Yamaha HS5 Is For & Why You Might Choose It Over The JBL One Series 104

Who The Yamaha HS5 Is For & Why You Might Choose It Over The JBL One Series 104

The Yamaha HS5 is for you if you're a music enthusiast who mixes tracks and wants to capture every minute detail of your sound.

You might choose this if you're looking for a crisp, crystal clear audio experience, and you value the quality of mid-range frequencies and treble over bass. This is not for casual listeners or those wanting deep thumping bass.

A Few Reasons to Choose Yamaha HS5:

Incredible Detail: Users have reported noticing details in their music that they hadn't before. The model's ability to show up flaws in tracks can be useful when seeking to perfect your mix.

Vocals and Mid-Range Clarity: If clear vocals matter to you, the Yamaha HS5 won't disappoint. It has been compared favourably with monitoring headphones (ATH M50x) in the context of mid-range frequency and treble clarity.

Flat Response: Compared to other speakers which tend to colour the sound by dipping the mids, the Yamaha HS5 provides a more accurate representation of sound due to its flat response.

However, there are certain pre-requisites before purchasing:

• These speakers each require their power source, so plan accordingly.

• An external soundcard or audio interface (such as Focusrite Scarlett 2i2) will be required.

• Careful consideration may need to be given regarding room acoustics and speaker placement.

If these considerations overwhelm you or seem too much work, these might not be for you.

Note on Bass: If accurate monitoring of bass frequencies is essential for your work, then investing in a subwoofer such as Yamaha HS8S or some good headphones (like ATH M50X) would be advisable.

Remember that room acoustics play an important role in how your speakers perform. They are very directional so ensure that they are placed properly for optimum results. Be prepared for less optimal performance outside of their defined ‘sweet spot'.

Conclusively​ speaking​ about why these might appeal: For professionals who value precision over boosting certain frequencies, ​the Yamaha HS5 is a great choice!

Who The JBL One Series 104 Is For & Why You Might Choose It Over The Yamaha HS5

Who The JBL One Series 104 Is For & Why You Might Choose It Over The Yamaha HS5

Who is the JBL One Series 104 For?
The JBL One Series 104 speakers are designed for those who need a compact, cost-effective and high-performance audio solution. These are ideal for beginner music enthusiasts, home recording and production studio owners, and even professionals looking for an affordable set of reference speakers.

Why Choose the JBL One Series 104?
Here's why you might consider these speakers:

  • Optimum Performance: The JBL 104s offer a quality sound experience, reproducing digital masters effectively. Given their optimal design triangulated at arm’s length from the listening position, they deliver balanced audio suitable for entry-level studio work.
  • Affordability: Their affordability is a key selling point. According to a retired professional audio engineer and commercial studio owner, these speakers deliver ‘very credible' results at just $130 per pair.
  • Built by Professionals: JBL is a reputable brand in the sound industry known for their high-quality products. If you're already a fan of their offerings or seek assurance from a trusted name, this could influence your decision to purchase.
  • Potential Upgradable Sound Experience: The addition of accessories such as DAC/Amp combos may enhance your overall experience with these speakers.

Potential Drawbacks to Consider
Despite the positives, some reviewers highlight possible drawbacks such as distortion at higher volumes and uneven tonal performance across different frequencies. However, others find them perfect for close-quarters listening arrangements where volume isn't a major concern.

Before making any buying decision, it's always important to weigh all potential pros and cons against your unique needs and preferences.

If the Yamaha HS5 vs JBL One Series 104 comparison didn't quite hit the mark, not to worry. I've assessed several similar products in my other posts. I invite you to check out my comparison between the Yamaha HS5 and IK Multimedia iLoud MTM.

Or perhaps, you might want to explore how the Kali Audio LP-6 V2 stacks up against the Genelec 8010A. For fans of JBL, you might find my analysis of Kali Audio LP-6 V2 versus JBL One Series 104 insightful.

I’ve also scrutinized how the Kali Audio LP-6 V2 compares with IK Multimedia iLoud MTM. Hopefully, these alternative reviews can steer you towards a product that truly aligns with your unique needs and expectations.


What are the specific professional-grade features that these studio monitors offer?

Both the Yamaha HS5 and JBL One Series 104 come packed with professional-grade features. The Yamaha HS5 boasts a frequency response of 88 to 20,000 Hz and a built-in 60-watt Class D amplifier for clear, undistorted sound at high volumes. It also offers a flat response for accurate mixes. The JBL One Series 104, on the other hand, offers superior sonic profiles derived from JBL's advanced sound technology, compact design suitable for limited desk spaces without compromising on performance.

How does the wide sweet spot feature of these monitors benefit me?

A wide sweet spot in studio monitors allows them to disperse sound evenly across any space. This means you can position yourself virtually anywhere in your room or studio while mixing or listening and still hear an accurate representation of your audio. This provides more flexibility regarding where you set up your workstation.

If I prefer more bass in my audio mix, which monitor would be better suited for my needs?

If punchy bass is what you're after, then the JBL LSR305, with a power output of up to 80W may be better suited to your needs as it delivers more punchiness especially in the bass department when compared to Yamaha HS5.

In terms of budget considerations between these two models which one is likely cheaper?

This information guide does not explicitly state which model – Yamaha HS5 or JBL One Series 104 – is cheaper or pricer. Prices can vary based on retailer, location and potential discounts or sales offered at any given time. It would be advisable to conduct some market research across different retail outlets both online and physical stores before making a purchase decision.

Buyer's Guide: Important Things To Consider & Look Out For When Buying Speakers

1. Prioritize Audio Quality

When it comes to buying a pair of studio monitors online, the first thing you'll want to zone in on is audio quality. You're purchasing these speakers to get the best and most accurate sound performance out of your audio, so why settle for anything less?

Take the Yamaha HS5, for example. It boasts a reputation for delivering exceptional accuracy that is unparalleled in its price range.

2. Check Out Speaker Comparison Reviews

It's easy to get overwhelmed with all the options available online. This is where speaker comparison reviews can be extremely helpful. They provide a side-by-side analysis of different speaker models—like comparing the Yamaha HS5 to JBL One Series 104—by detailing their pros and cons, as well as their performance under various usage scenarios.

3. Pay Attention to Frequency Response

Every speaker has a specific range it can handle when producing sounds; this is known as frequency response. More expansive ranges mean more detailed so get familiar with your choices' frequency responses—this can be an indicator of how well they will reproduce sound across various genres.

4. Size Does Matter

Don't overlook the importance of size when shopping for your monitor speakers online—a compact-sized speaker like JBL One Series 104 offers superb flexibility without compromising on sound performance. The term “compact size” doesn't necessarily equate lower quality or volume; it simply means that they are easy to place regardless of studio size.

5.Consider Design Features That Suit Your Needs

Studio monitors aren't just about delivering high-quality audio; they should also blend well with your workspace's aesthetics while still being functional. Look at design features such as material used, color availability, placement options etc., that enhance both visual appeal and ease-of-use.

6. Investigate Accuracy Ratings

If you're planning on using these speakers mainly for music production or mixing tracks, then go for studio monitors known specifically for their accuracy.This critical feature enables you to hear every note distinctly so you can make precise adjustments as needed—a feature common in top-tier models like Yamaha HS5.

About Author

Arielle P

Arielle P

Songwriter | Music Producer | Engineer.

With a background in music production and a strong passion for education, Arielle is dedicated to helping emerging artists navigate the music industry. She has worked with a diverse range of artists, from indie rock bands to well-known hip-hop and grime artists. Arielle's unique approach to teaching focuses on empowering artists to take control of their brand, ensuring they retain creative ownership throughout their journey. In her free time, she enjoys experimenting with new sounds in her home studio and sharing her insights through music production tutorials and workshops.

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