Jamo S 803 vs. Klipsch Reference R-51M

Jamo S 803 Bookshelf Speakers Klipsch Reference R-51M Bookshelf Speakers
$330 $350
Dimensions (H × W × D)
13.94” × 6.56” × 9.94”
354mm × 167mm × 252mm
13.00” × 7.00” × 8.56”
330mm × 178mm × 217mm
Power Type
Passive Passive
Frequency Response
57-26,000 Hz 62-21,000 Hz

Key Takeaways

TLDR Summary: In the realm of affordable audio fidelity, the Jamo S 803 and Klipsch Reference R-51M stand tall. The S 803s exude European elegance with a balanced, warm sound that's room-friendly. Their tasteful design complements modern decor. Meanwhile, the Klipsch R-51Ms, with their trademark Tractrix horn, deliver a lively, dynamic experience, punching well above their weight class. They offer a more forward, detailed sound, ideal for those seeking audio with immediacy. Both are stellar performers in their price bracket, but your choice hinges on aesthetic preference and whether you lean towards laid-back or exhilarating listening sessions.

Speaker Comparison

When it comes to outfitting a space with the ideal bookshelf speakers, audiophiles often find themselves at a crossroads, torn between aesthetics and acoustics. Two contenders frequently juxtaposed are the Jamo S 803 and Klipsch Reference R-51M bookshelf speakers – both commendable for their unique contributions to the world of sound. At first glance, their distinct design philosophies are apparent – the Jamo exudes a contemporary elegance while the Klipsch boasts a classic, bold appearance. Yet, what truly sets these two apart is how they deliver on the promise of an immersive listening experience.

Sonic Character and Soundstage

The Jamo S 803 speakers present a sound profile that's warm and spacious, accentuating the richness of the midrange, which can be particularly pleasing for vocal-centric tracks and acoustic performances. Their soundstage offers a panoramic feel, allowing for a more enveloping experience. Conversely, the Klipsch R-51M speakers are known for their lively and dynamic sound signature, largely thanks to their proprietary Tractrix horn-loaded technology. This design choice ensures high-frequency sounds are crisp and projected more directly, creating a more assertive soundstage that Klipsch aficionados have come to love.

Jamo S 803 Bookshelf Speakers
Jamo S 803 arrow (at Amazon.com)

Build and Aesthetic Quality

Jamo's Scandinavian design influence is evident in the S 803 speakers, with their minimalistic clean lines and wood accents that can blend seamlessly into a modern interior. The build quality is robust, yet there's an air of refined simplicity in their construction. Klipsch, on the other hand, has always embraced a more traditional approach with the R-51M speakers. Their copper-spun IMG woofers and textured wood grain vinyl give them an almost vintage vibe that commands attention and pays homage to Klipsch's longstanding heritage in speaker design.

Power and Efficiency

When it comes to power, the Klipsch R-51M speakers tend to have an edge over the Jamo S 803. Klipsch's speakers are generally more efficient and can be driven to higher volumes with less power, making them an excellent match for a wider range of amplifiers and receivers. This efficiency does not come at the expense of control or finesse; the R-51M can handle delicate passages and raucous crescendos with equal aplomb. Meanwhile, the Jamo S 803 speakers offer a more laid-back approach, prioritizing balance and smoothness throughout the volume range, which can be particularly beneficial in smaller rooms or in setups where nuanced audio reproduction is key.

Klipsch Reference R-51M Bookshelf Speakers
Klipsch Reference R-51M arrow (at Amazon.com)

Despite the difference in approach to efficiency and power handling, both the Jamo S 803 and the Klipsch R-51M are capable of producing a satisfying level of sound pressure, filling a typical living room with ease. The listener’s preference for intimate listening sessions versus full-blown, high-energy playback will be the deciding factor here. It's worth noting that the sensitivity of the Klipsch R-51M can make them more suitable for those who like to push the volume without pushing their amplifier too hard.

Compatibility and Versatility

When it comes to compatibility and versatility, both Jamo and Klipsch have designed their bookshelf speakers to be highly adaptable within various setups. The Jamo S 803 includes a unique feature - a Dolby Atmos ready connection on top, catering to those who may wish to expand into an Atmos setup in the future. This forward-thinking feature demonstrates Jamo's commitment to adaptable and future-proof design. The Klipsch R-51M, while not Atmos-ready, still performs admirably in multiple configurations, be it in a stereo pairing for music or as part of a larger home theater system, showcasing its flexibility.

Ultimately, the choice between the Jamo S 803 and the Klipsch Reference R-51M bookshelf speakers will hinge on personal taste, both in sound preferences and aesthetic sensibilities. The Jamo offers a sleek, understated look with a warm, balanced sound that will appeal to those who enjoy a more relaxed listening experience. The Klipsch, conversely, delivers an energetic and forward presentation, both visually and sonically, for those who favor intensity and impact. What both share, however, is the ability to captivate and impress, marking them as worthy considerations for anyone looking to enrich their home audio environment.

Check Current Prices:

Jamo S 803 Bookshelf Speakers
Jamo S 803 Bookshelf Speakers
Klipsch Reference R-51M Bookshelf Speakers
Klipsch Reference R-51M Bookshelf Speakers

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Disclaimer: the speaker data listed on this website are correct to the best of our knowledge, but we do not guarantee the accuracy of the data. Please double-check any measurements with the manufacturer before making a final purchasing decision.