Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #84456  by schmidtz
 Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:41 pm
Hello all,
A local guy has a pair of 1958 JBL D131's for sale for $150 each. Is this something a Jerry-Head should be interested in? They are in great condition with original cones and no dimples in the dome. Seems like a pretty cool deal, since they are 52 years old. :shock:
How do they compare tonally to the revered D120's?

 #84459  by JonnyBoy
 Mon Aug 02, 2010 7:24 pm
Some people like them, some people feel the K and E series is an improvement due to their sensitivity and power handling combined. I would never speak ill of the D series speakers, but they are more fragile than the K and E series for loud jamming and gigging, especially at there age. I would love a pair for a vintage amp at the house.... I guess it depends on what you are buying them for, but yes with the right tricks of the hand you will sound like Jerry all day long. I prefer the E series speakers despite the weight, The K series are a little too bright sometimes for me. From what I read around here you can get a new Weber speaker that clones the D series tone pretty well.

I have purchased all my JBL's at or under 100 bucks on the bay, but you have to be patient. These sound like a deal though considering the D series go for much more than the K and E. I wouldn't have remorse picking them up at that price. Good Luck man, Sounds like you got a good find. :smile:
 #84460  by Pete B.
 Mon Aug 02, 2010 8:09 pm
I own and use an orange frame D130F, and have often seen D131's discussed in related threads.

Anyone measure any 16ohm JBLs lately?
'Just came across this one in a D131 related thread...
Interestingly, according to post #37 by Harvey Gerst of JBL, all the 16 ohm-ers were really 8ohms. ... post119055
 #84469  by strumminsix
 Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:20 am
I do believe the 131s are voiced more like bass speakers are today. Would not be good for guitarists... D130s, by contrast, would be good for guitarists.
 #85106  by schmidtz
 Thu Aug 12, 2010 8:30 pm
From what I have ascertained, the D series cones are typically twice the cost of E and K, due to age and the fact that so many great guitarists used the D series (Jimi, Duane Allman, etc).

I passed on the D131's, FWIW, due to the bass voicing comment. Really holding out for some E120s.
 #143082  by tatittle
 Wed Dec 03, 2014 7:39 pm
I realize this is an old thread, but I couldn't pass up commenting on the tone of D131's...
D131's are the 12" precursor to the D120, indeed there was a D131F briefly (I own one) where the F is stamped by hand. They are essentially the same as D120's. The D131F added doping to the surround which addressed the primary flaw over time: cracking of the 1 piece paper surround.

The non-doped D131's (no F) are a bit brighter than D120's partially due to no dope. I sold my D131's because I didn't prefer the extra presence or whatever and I didn't see them lasting a long time. I added doping too. I have no idea what the comment referencing bass speaker voicing is about....that is just flat wrong as far as I gather. Sounds like they may be thinking about a 15" model anyhow.