View Full Version : A good all rounder

Jac Hawk
05-01-2011, 22:38
Ok not to go too much into my setup, rather looking for oppinions to what would be a good sub to go for in a 5.1 setup, but as well will be musical enough when playing music, at present i have a Yamaha yst-sw80 which is quite musical, but a crap movie sub, any ideas?

06-01-2011, 09:04
I have a Wharfdale SW250 sub in my AV system and it sounds pretty good to my ears. I don't use it for music playback though, so can't say how good it would be in that situation.

06-01-2011, 09:45
I have a Velodyne DD15. Its a mother. The big advantage of the better Velodyne subs is that you can tailor the response to your room, so in my case its tucked down the side of a settee away fro the cats claws. You connect it up to your TV and adjust an on-screen display.

electric beach
06-01-2011, 10:44
Hi Mike,

I have been very happy with my REL Strata 2. I only use it to augment a two channel system, primarily for music but I do play films through the set up via PS3.
The three critical points for me are:

1. The excellent crossover control to blend into the main speakers. I only want to hear the low frequencies extended, not hear a seperate bass element.

2. The facility to connect a high level signal directly from the amp's speaker terminals, to maintain common timing cues and the amp's character.

3. A design that "loads" the room, giving deeper bass that you feel rather than hear. This is the element which makes a sub essential for my two channel preference, improving imaging, presence and a more realistic quality to any sound via full tonal range.

My REL packed up just before xmas and I picked up a replacement - a Velodyne CHT15. While this has the first two criteria it does not have the third, due to being a direct radiating, ported design whereas the REL is sealed box and fires at the floor. Regardless of the volume of output (which is plenty) it never does the magic trick with music that gives an effect far greater than "a bit more low end wallop".

Admittedly I would usually turn the volume up a little for movies but essentially I want the same characteristics and the REL will be going to hospital and coming back home.

There is another company that I think is a spin-off from REL called MJ Acoustics and embraces similar design philosophy. For your 5.1 consideration I think the additional feature of dual high and low level input may well be your panacea for a sub that performs well with both music and movies.

06-01-2011, 12:54
I've not listen to a Rel but they always got good reviews, i use a B&W 150? not sure of the model but about 10 years old forward facing sub which is nice and subtle and okish for music, i also use a late 90's Paradign PS1000 in another system which has massive amounts of bass which is enclosed and fires downwards, that one really makes the plates rattle in the cupbourds, not one for close neighbours, great for movies but can be over over bearing on music, my son has my Audio Note AZ2 floor standers in his system and he doesn't need a sub these are very musical and provide adeqate bass, it also depends on the size of your room and whether it has suspended floors or solid.

I keep my Av and 2 channel systems seperate as i have always found subs a distaction in my applications, i found i was always fiddling to adjust the volume of the sub, sorry not much help just my 10p worth

Reid Malenfant
06-01-2011, 18:21
I'd suggest a decent sized sealed box if you want it to be musical as well as produce decent lows, you'll need to look at something with a 12" driver though. Some of the smaller Rel subs might do as they have plenty of excursion capability. On the other hand some of the ported Rel subs as has been pointed out are also very good, something like the Stadium, Stentor or an older (due to costs :eek:) Studio would knock your socks off :eyebrows:

Whatever you audition make absolutely sure that it has a variable crossover that allows it to cut off down to 35Hz or lower ;) Also another thing, make sure once again that it has a variable phase control as well as a phase reversal switch ;) This will allow you to integrate it properly into just about any system you are likely to come accross..

Don't go for a cheap ported sub, you'll get a nice lot of boom & no depth as well as bad overhang & one note bass :rolleyes: Also steer clear of any coupled cavity subs as unless properly designed these also tend to have the same problems as the above cheap ported systems.

Spectral Morn
06-01-2011, 18:33
Rel Quake (assuming you can still buy them new) or one of the better ones S/H

Regards D S D L

Mark Grant
06-01-2011, 19:23
BK Electronics are another good make.



Reid Malenfant
06-01-2011, 19:31
BK Electronics are another good make.


I think i'd second that :eyebrows: Looks like they are using the Tymphany (Peerless) XLS & XXLS subwoofer drivers & these are top quality :)

06-01-2011, 19:37
This is very old news now, but I was very fond of the M&K subs from the US. The two smaller ones were dated looking, but were perfect for music. I don't know if this firm still exists and is related to the MK site linked to by Mark Grant above.

One other, designed for music with a very heavy duty custom driver in a sturdy but simple box, is the AVI one for the ADM's. Adjustable as most are, music came first and foremost.

Reid Malenfant
06-01-2011, 19:43
Miller & Kreisel are still available from what i know Dave. Not pretty but certainly effective :eyebrows:

06-01-2011, 19:55
there's a Rel Storm for sale here (http://www.hifiwigwam.com/showthread.php?49563-REL-Storm-100W-Sub)

Reid Malenfant
06-01-2011, 20:01
Yep that's another good one Jon ;) Funny how all Rel ported sub names begin with an "S" :scratch:

Jac Hawk
06-01-2011, 22:37
thanks guys, you're renforcing what i already thought and the usual suspects turned up i.e rel, velodyne, m&k. think i'm gonna need to go out and audition a few or see if i can get one or two on loan, as i suppose unlike main speakers a sub is going to need to fit in rather than be the star of the show, so what sounds great in the shop may not be the same in my house.

What i need in reality is something that can comfortable get down below 35hz, you know the sound you feel and not hear, my old yammy just makes a horid farting noise at this frequrncy.

06-01-2011, 22:48
Studio would knock your socks off :eyebrows:

I used to have a REL Studio II for several years and it did have mighty power. It gave me the lowest octave (set for 21Hz) to augment my Mezzo Utopias of the time, as I rather like organ music.

I found in my current room with the dual 11" drivers per side of the Ushers that I didn't need it so I sold it. I highly recommend the Studio/Stentor/Stadium series if you need a 'hi-fi' sub capable of integrating very well with your main stereo pair.

Reid Malenfant
06-01-2011, 23:04
I found in my current room with the dual 11" drivers per side of the Ushers that I didn't need it so I sold it. I highly recommend the Studio/Stentor/Stadium series if you need a 'hi-fi' sub capable of integrating very well with your main stereo pair.
:eyebrows: Dual 11" per side i can't honestly say i'm surprised :) I bet they have a decent bit of excursion to being modern drivers ;)

Fair play, if you have read anything of where i'm going i know you'll understand :)

08-01-2011, 23:28
I have a REL Quake. It is pretty good with movies unless you are 0db nut and was good for music until I got the RX6's as my old Ruark Talisman 2's were kinda lost in my new house when I moved. The RX sub was very musical when I demoed it but cash flow and the fact a grill that low would be too much for the fur balls in the house to resist so can't see me buying one. I gather if you want cheap deep quality bass then BK are excellent and used to make REL's back in the day before REL changed hands. I always fancied a B&W PV series sub as it looks neat and wife friendly but it's trashed in AVforums sub section as being very vfm.

Reid Malenfant
09-01-2011, 19:39
:doh: Forgot to mention it & feel free to call me a dumbass (as i own one :o).

The Paradigm DSP series are rather good with music & films, well i can speak from experience as i own the DSP-3400 & it can rearange your innards if required :eyebrows:

I'd put it on a par with the Rel ported subs like the studio.

Peter Galbavy
10-01-2011, 16:38
I will third the BK range - the Monolith in particular. Had mine for a number of years and it's great for films and music. Made by hand in the UK and to order - so you can have custom colours and finishes if you are willing to wait.