Subwoofers

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Ed Selley  |  Oct 03, 2018  |  0 comments
SVS's heavy-duty SB-4000 subwoofer partners a large driver and 1,200W amp with intelligent operation. Ed Selley tries his hardest to ruffle its feathers
Richard Stevenson  |  Oct 25, 2017  |  0 comments

Commemorating 25 years of REL sub-bass systems in some style, the company's No.25 is a very special subwoofer and mad as a box of frogs. A really, really big box of frogs, too. Weighing in at a whopping 76kg, its width is close to 75cm, it's over 80cm deep including connectors poking out and it stands 54cm tall. And even if you have a large room to house it, you'll need a big wallet as well. The price? A cool £6,500.

Ed Selley  |  Sep 29, 2017  |  0 comments

We seem to be in the middle of a faintly deranged arms race on the subwoofer front at the moment. The challenge of this contest is to see who can direct the largest amount of power at the largest spread of drivers in the smallest overall box (although a separate competition to design the biggest device going is also apparently underway). 

Mark Craven  |  Jun 15, 2017  |  0 comments

Bass is a vital part of the home cinema package. Hefty, heaving, humongous low-frequencies are guaranteed to add scale and impact to a surround sound experience, in a way that crystalline high frequencies or robust dialogue just don't. For some AV enthusiasts, their subwoofer is their favourite toy.

Richard Stevenson  |  Dec 01, 2016  |  0 comments

Here at HCC we rather liked REL’s Serie S subwoofers, even if it has involved repeatedly telling sub-editors that there isn’t an ‘s’ on the end of Serie. When the company announced a Super High Output overhaul of the S/5 and S/3 models we had questions. Could they be better than the original? Would the price remain competitive? Might REL find that lost ‘s’? The answer to the last is 'no', but I'm happy to reply in the affirmative to the first two. 

Adam Rayner  |  Jul 07, 2016  |  0 comments

JL Audio straddles both the AV and car audio markets, delivering deep bass thrills to those who seek them. On the home cinema side it is best known for its premium-priced, insanely potent Gotham and Fathom subwoofers. This offering, new to the UK and debuted at the Bristol Show, is the company's idea of an entry-level product, and is called Dominion.

Mark Craven  |  Dec 05, 2015  |  0 comments

When it comes to bass, bigger is generally better. After all, hitting low frequencies at high output requires large drivers able to shift plenty of air, and said  drivers obviously need to be mounted in sizeable boxes. In an ideal world, we'd all have 18in woofers the size of a Smart car.

Adam Rayner  |  Sep 09, 2015  |  0 comments

I've reviewed a few high-end subwoofers recently, but this is a simple and affordable offering that is, in its own way, equally impressive.

Adam Rayner  |  Aug 18, 2015  |  0 comments

Eclipse is the audio side of Japanese automotive technology company Fujitsu Ten. As a speaker brand, it is famous for its egg-shaped single-driver models, the Time Domain series. The design of these premium speakers isn't just for show – its effect upon the internal physics is to reduce back wave disturbance. And a single full-range transducer has no passive crossover, nor tweeter, thus no distortion in that crucial part of our hearing. In these days of bat-frequency super-tweeters there are those who deride the ability of a single driver to reproduce the absolute top tones, saying they are not as bright as designs with separate HF drivers. But then you actually hear the Eclipse speakers and such discussion goes out of the window. It's hilarious to watch someone get their first Time Domain experience; the detail and accuracy literally boggles.

Applying cunning enclosure acoustics and profoundly muscular motors driving very rigid small diaphragms works a treat for most musical frequencies. But bass is different. It requires logarithmically more energy and power to move a thousand times more air than a mid-band/high-frequency transducer. Yet essentially, Eclipse’s approach to bass remains the same. It wants speed and it wants accuracy. 

Adam Rayner  |  Aug 01, 2015  |  0 comments

The 212SE, the newest venture from sub-bass specialist REL, is a mighty quad-driver woofer capable of making profound, structure-borne seismic lows that will flow through walls and foundations. It probably isn't fit for semi-detached suburbia, unless – like me – you have The Best Neighbours Ever.

Ed Selley  |  Mar 25, 2015  |  0 comments

As a company, SVS has taken the ‘no substitute for cubic capacity’ maxim and flogged it to death. Then flogged it a bit more. The PB-2000 subwoofer is at the affordable end of its portfolio but it is still a huge piece of kit. The PB classification denotes a ported model, so as well as a 12in forward-firing driver, there is a 4in port working on the same axis. Now, no 12in woofer is ever going to be tiny, but at 55cm deep and over 50cm high, the PB-2000 is a bit of a whopper.

Adam Rayner  |  Aug 15, 2014  |  0 comments

REL makes superb active subwoofers in general and this one is so good, it is peer to at least one 15in model and other products nearly twice the price. In the S5, driver and amplifier engineering have created a new benchmark.

Mark Craven  |  Jun 30, 2014  |  0 comments

Priced at £650, the SB-2000 is targeted at those eager to sample the delights of serious subwoofer technology without breaking the bank, or rearranging their furniture. A sealed design (SVS has a new ported woofer, too, the PB-2000), the American manufacturer claims it's 'compact'. I'd take that with a pinch of salt – it's not massive, but it's hardly dinky.

Ed Selley  |  Aug 30, 2013  |  0 comments

SV Sound (SVS) was a pioneer in the field of direct sales in its native US and carved out a solid reputation for producing no-nonsense designs that punched well above their price point. Initially, it mainly offered cylindrical types, which we've previously likened to giant-sized scratching posts, but more recently the designs have also included more conventional boxes, like the SB12-NSD reviewed here.

Ed Selley  |  Aug 19, 2013  |  0 comments
REL Acoustics has been at the business of subwoofers for a very long time and has a slightly different set of design priorities to many other brands. RELs were originally all about giving a bit of low-end shove to your stereo system before ‘home cinema’ was a gleam in Dolby’s eye. To this end, the T-7 is a somewhat different proposition to many of its rivals.

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