get the jl audio f113-very easy to integrate --easiest sub I have ever used to set up also the best--real bass timbre not just one note thumps--? feel free to email me--rich
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I purchased a JLAudio F113 to augment my B&W 800 speakers and cold not be happier. JL may be the new guy on the block for high-end stereo, but they know bass really well. The digital set-up calibration is very straight-forward and easy to perform. Before this subwoofer, I thought it was impossible to integrate a sub in a fine music system. But subwoofers have come a long way. Getting that last octave dramtically enhances the feel of the soundstage. Enjoy!
I use the Velodyne SMS-1 (which is the mic, analyzer, crossover, and PEQ from the DD series, packaged separately for use with any subwoofer of your choice) with 2 8" Velodyne SPLR woofers. My first reaction is:
Whichever woofer you choose, use the SMS to integrate it with your mains. Your observation is spot on- this is an amazingly sophisticated tool for integrating subs. The better news: you can mate it with any sub you like, not just Velodynes (although I happen to like the Velodynes). The best news: The SMS-1 is $600 at AudioAdvisor.com
BTW, I'd love to get your feedback on the 121 with a properly EQ'd woofer system. I love many aspects of the MBL line, but the octave to octave balance (mid bass and presence region elevation) would eventually drive me nuts. My instinct tells me that a skillfully set up 121/subwoofer might well smoke any of the bigger MBLs.
Thanks guys. It sounds like either option will work for me. I may go for the 12" subs rather than bigger as I'm guessing they would be less likely to overpower a room (expecially if I do move to a smaller place which is a liklihood). I've also read that the 12" can work better for music.
Marty, thanks for the tip on the SMS-1. That does sound like a great idea. Do you know if I would need one for each sub or can it calibrate both subs? Also, does it stay in the signal chain, or is it more of a measuement tool that's used just in set up and then moved to the side?
Yes, my dream is to get that super integration that may give me more flexibility and better room accomodate vs. going for a bigger pair of MBLs.
The SMS stays in the chain as a low pass and PEQ for the subs. It also has a fixed 80Hz 6db/octave high pass built in. In your case, I seem to recall that the 121 already incorporates a high pass (or in this case "low cut") filter integrated into the speaker. If so, you could take a line out of your pre into the SMS and onto the woofer of your choice and a second line out of the pre into your main amps and on to the 121. In this set up, the SMS is out of the signal path to your 121s.
OTOH, the SMS also has a pass-thru. If you don't have a 2nd line out of the pre-amp, the SMS can output an unprocessed signal for this purpose. It will remain in the signal path of your mains, but they will see a full range line level input. Or you can route the signal from the pre through 80hz high pass in the SMS and your mains will see the 6db/octave roll off below 80hz.
BTW, the SMS will control up to 3 subs, but each will get the same signal. That is, room analaysis and PEQ are done with all subs set up in place, and the SMS will cumulatively analyze the room output. You then set EQ for flattest response (or for your taste) on that cumulative basis. The thing works amazingly well. The process involves a lot of trial and error (and a fair bit of time), but when you get a flattish line through the x-over region, you will be amazed at how good the thing sounds. At least, IME.